Game, set and match to Groupama 34
After three in-port races, two first place finishes went to Groupama 34, confirming their supremacy over Courrier Dunkerque 3, which claimed second place overall. Bretagne Crédit Mutuel Elite claimed the third place on the podium. Normandy captured first overall among a top-flight line-up of amateur entries.
37 races and 22 first place finishes for Franck Cammas' crew: the green boat dominated the 36th Tour de France a la Voile. Finally relaxed, Cammas was thrown into the water by his seven crewmates.
“I’m very happy to finish the Tour de France in style," said Cammas. "We knew it was a done deal a few days ago, but we made the effort to sail our best right to the end. We did exactly that today, in great wind, bright sunshine and clear water in Marseille.
"This month of racing has truly been a pleasure. We’ve made our share of mistakes, but obviously less than the others. I’m not good at saying thank you, but my teammates know the respect we have for one another. This respect is something you feel, not something you say. We took a lot of pleasure sailing today. I love yacht racing, it’s my passion and the Tour is one very intense regatta. It will remain a very good memory for me with a team that perfectly came together.”
A staggering 107 points behind Groupama 34 was Courrier Dunkerque. Skipper Daniel Souben was happy with second place, but was caught somewhere between stunned and impressed with the Tour winner. "It was a tough, beautiful tour with very good conditions. Sure, we’re frustrated that we didn’t beat Groupama because we came to try and win the Tour. But they won by sailing an impeccable, consistent race. Congratulations to them.
"Our crew has remained focused despite a difficult start where we raced well below our level. Today we were in phase with the wind, sailing in conditions we would have loved to have the entire month. To finish on a day like this, it's great, but it's a little frustrating because we should have raced like this the entire time. But it’s good and the guys still made me proud."
In third place overall, Bretagne Crédit Mutuel Elite -long poised to capture second place overall - was overtaken by Daniel Souben only yesterday during the La Seyne-Marseille offshore leg. Bretagne Credit Mutual finished 4th, 9th and 2nd in today’s in-port races, leaving Nicolas Troussel’s crew 12 points behind Courrier Dunkerque 3.
Troussel, a double Solitaire du Figaro winner, said “This is the third year in a row we’ve taken third place! But what we have to keep in mind is yes, Groupama is far ahead, but Courrier Dunkerque was far ahead last year. And today the two of us are practically tied for points. I want to thank my teammates because we did great things together. It was really nice to play with Groupama. Everything came together.”
Sodebo, skippered by Thomas Coville, finished fourth overall. Coville commented: “Overall, I’m happy with this Tour. We wanted to make the podium but we can’t hide the fact that we narrowly missed it. We knew it would be hard work. We knew that the three teams ahead of us started training earlier and had more experience than us, but we had our own cards to play. We had all the problems of a young team. We’d go from winning an offshore leg to crumbling the day after. I came here to fight, to learn and to take risks before embarking on my winter record campaign. And from that point of view I enjoyed every bit of this very intense month of racing.”
The young team from Normandy led by Benoit Charon, captured first place overall amongst the amateur rankings, 39 points ahead of the German entry, Iskareen.
The 36th Tour de France a la Voile received a huge welcome in each city it visited. More than 53,000 people visited the race village in Dieppe in three days. To conclude the 2013 edition though, a pro-am race is scheduled tomorrow in Marseille.
1 GROUPAMA 34, CAMMAS Franck 1328 pts - Blue spinnaker
2 COURRIER DUNKERQUE 3, SOUBEN Daniel 1221 pts
3 BRETAGNE CREDIT MUTUEL ELITE, TROUSSEL Nicolas 1209 pts
4 SODEBO, COVILLE Thomas 1199,7pts
5 TEAM OMANSAIL, POULIGNY Cédric 1152 pts
6 TOULON PROVENCE MEDITERRANEE - COYCH, BERNAZ Jean-Baptiste 1067 pts
7 VILLE DE GENEVE - CARREFOUR ADDICTIONS, METTRAUX Elodie-Jane et GROUX Nicolas 1051 pts
8 NANTES - SAINT NAZAIRE - E.LECLERC, DOUGUET Corentin 1026 pts
9 NORMANDIE, CHOQUENET Baptiste 964 pts
10 ISKAREEN, DITTMERS Christiane et BRUHNS Sönke 925 pts
11 MARTINIQUE - BE.BRUSSELS, WOLTERS Delphine et MOURES Matthieu 902 pts
12 BIENNE - VOILE – SRS, PETER Luzius et KUNZ François 813 pts
Offshore results after 9 legs:
1 GROUPAMA 34, CAMMAS Franck 649 pts
2 BRETAGNE CREDIT MUTUEL ELITE, TROUSSEL Nicolas 628 pts - Spi Vert
3 SODEBO, COVILLE Thomas 609,7pts (...)
Amateur class results after 37 races:
1 NORMANDIE, CHOQUENET Baptiste 964 pts - Pink spinnaker
2 ISKAREEN, DITTMERS Christiane et BRUHNS Sönke 925 pts
3 MARTINIQUE - BE.BRUSSELS, WOLTERS Delphine et MOURES Matthieu 902 pts
4 BIENNE - VOILE – SRS, PETER Luzius et KUNZ François 813 pts