Photos: Artemis Offshore Academy

Strong start for Artemis Offshore Academy Figarists

Jack Bouttell, Ed Hill and Henry Bomby competed in the ICOM Cup Méditérranée

Tuesday March 12th 2013, Author: James Boyd, Location: France

Artemis Offshore Academy skippers Jack Bouttell (Artemis 77) and Ed Hill (Artemis 37) alongside graduate sailor Henry Bomby (Artemis 23) finished the three-stage ICOM Cup Méditérranée, after sailing 365 miles and over six days of racing.

For Hill and Bouttell it was their first solo yacht race, while for Bomby it was his first race of the 2013 season and they were all embracing the challenge. “The race was an opportunity for the skippers to measure themselves against experienced Solitaire du Figaro competitors and at various points during the event, Henry, Ed and Jack have all been up there in contention with two of the best Figaro sailors in the class,” said Artemis Offshore Academy Performance Director, John Thorn.

The regatta was the first official competition of the 2013 Figaro season after an intensive three-month winter training period – a steep learning curve for the Academy sailors.

The first 24 hour long stage of the event was a wet and windy 160 mile race from La Grande Motte to Marseille. This race highlighted the promising talent that Hill and Bouttell possess, finishing third and fifth respectively.

Hill’s podium finish was no fluke: “Before the start I decided that a southerly route would be more advantageous and I stuck to my plan, which paid off and it felt good to lead the fleet around the second mark.” Bouttell was also racing with the leaders for a while and held onto second place before the fleet converged to round the second mark when Hill took the lead.

Unfortunately Bomby was one of three sailors who had to retire from leg one after damaging the headsail luff grove during a sail change in the night in big seas and strong winds.

The second stage of the race was a much shorter inshore 10 nautical mile race: “We had about 6 knots for the start, which built up to as much as 20 knots at some points, before dropping back to 6kts for the finish. It was a short but frustrating race, but I’m learning a lot and was a good experience,” reported Bouttell.

The final 195nm leg back to La Grande Motte took around 48 hours to complete and was a real chance for the sailors to put their solo offshore ability to the test with two nights at sea.

Bomby was on a mission to prove himself going into the third leg: “My aim for the final leg was to race front runners Xavier Macaire, Jean-Pierre Nicol and Pietro D’Ali to the finish and get a result I could be happy with. After a bad start for me in 11th, I spent the first half of the race pushing my way through the fleet into fourth. Although I didn’t race the leading pack across the finish line, I did win the race that raged between Jack, Matthieu Girolet, David Keneflick and myself – so I’m happy with that.”

Overall this set of races has been the first competitive test for the Artemis sailors and has provided the lessons needed to move forward before the competition ramps up significantly for the next race in just four weeks time: “Going into our next race, the Solo Arrimer, I’ll try to stay more in touch with the fleet – in this regatta I made a few bold decisions that at times paid off and others didn’t. The race also boats more top level skippers including Vendée Globe skipper Jeremie Beyou, and racing against them will be an opportunity to learn more in a larger fleet of exceptional sailors,” furthered Hill.

As one race finishes, another begins with Academy Mini skipper, Nikki Curwen, set to embark on her first solo Class Mini race, the 190nm Solo Roma-Solo Race, starting on Friday at 11:00 GMT.

Overall results:
Position/Skipper/Figaro no./Nationality/Time

1. Xavier Macaire/8/FRA/2d, 16h, 26’ 10"
2. Jean Pierre Nicol/68/FRA/2d, 18h, 30’ 49"
3. Matthieu Girolet/86/FRA/2d, 22h, 27’ 13"
4. Pietro d’Ali/42/ITA/2d, 22h, 52’ 30"
5. Jack Bouttell/77/GBR/2d, 23h, 01’ 05"
6. Gwenael Gbick/29/FRA/3d, 00h, 15’ 49"
7. Ed Hill/37/GBR/3d, 00h, 33’, 00"
8. Yves Ravot/31/FRA/3d, 00h, 35’ 05"
9. Alexia Barrier/49/FRA/3d, 2h, 11’ 55"
10.Henry Bomby/23/GBR/4d, 2h, 29’ 23"
11.David Kenefick/45/IRL/4d, 2h, 38’ 01"
12.Jean Paul Mouren/13/FRA/5d, 6h, 20’ 40"

Leg one results:
Position/Skipper/Figaro no./Nationality/Time

1. Matthieu Girolet/86/FRA/1d, 2h, 49’ 17"
2. Xavier Herault/8/FRA/1d, 3h, 07’ 57"
3. Ed Hill/37/GBR/1d, 3h, 8h, 18"
4. Yves Ravot/31/FRA/1d, 3h, 10’ 51"
5. Jack Bouttell/77/GBR/1d, 3h, 22’ 54"
6. Gwenael Gbick/29/FRA/1d, 4h, 32’ 25"
7. Alexia Barrier/49/FRA/1d, 4h, 38’ 36"
8. Jean-Pierre Nicol/68/FRA/1d, 4h, 56’ 36"
9. Pietro D’Ali/42/ITA/1d, 5h, 16’ 52"
RTR Jean-Paul Mouren/13/FRA/2d, 6h, 52’ 00"
RTR David Kenefick/45/IRL/2d, 6h, 52’ 00"
RTR Henry Bomby/23/GBR/2d, 6h, 52’ 00"

Leg two results:
Position/Skipper/Figaro no./Nationality/Time

1. Xavier Macaire/8/FRA/1d, 35h, 54’
2. Jean Paul Mouren/13/FRA/1d, 36h, 41’
3. Jean Pierre Nicol/68/FRA/1d, 37h, 06’
4. David Kenefick/45//IRL/1d, 37h, 52’
5. Pietro D’Ali/42/ITA/1d, 38h, 03’
6. Matthieu Girolet/86/FRA/1d, 38h, 13’
7. Gwenael Gbick/29/FRA/1d, 38h, 04’
8. Jack Bouttel/77/GBR/1d, 39h, 13’
9. Henry Bomby/23/GBR/1d, 39h, 28’
10. Ed Hill/37/GBR/1d, 39h, 32’
11. Alexia Barrier/49/FRA/1d, 41h, 05’
12. Yves Ravot/31/FRA/1d, 41h, 19’

Stage three results:
Position/Skipper/Figaro no./Nationality/Time

1. Xavier Macaire/8/FRA/1d, 11h, 42’ 16"
2. Jean Pierre NicoL/68/FRA/1d, 11h, 57’ 10"
3. Pietro d’Ali/42/ITA/1d, 15h, 57’ 35"
4. Henry Bomby/23/GBR/1d, 17h, 57’ 55"
5. David Kenefick/45/IRL/1d, 18h, 08’ 09"
6. Jack Bouttell/77/GBR/1d, 17h, 58’ 58"
7. Matthieu Girolet/86/FRA/1d, 17h, 59’ 43"
8. Gwenael Gbick/29/FRA/1d, 18h, 05’ 10"
9. Ed Hill/37/GBR/1d, 19h, 45’ 10"
10. Yves Ravot/31/FRA/1d, 19h, 42’ 55"
11. Alexia Barrier/49/FRA/1d, 19h, 52’ 14"
RTR Jean Paul Mouren/13/FRA/2d, 21h, 51’ 59"

 

 

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