Joyon's new Jules Verne Trophy steed

Lending Club returns to Multiplast to be transformed into IDEC Sport

Wednesday September 9th 2015, Author: James Boyd, Location: France

Francis Joyon is gradually getting his hands on the new IDEC Sport trimaran. The former Groupama 3, Banque Populaire VII trimaran has just arrived in Vannes in the colours of Lending Club, after a successful crewed record campaign. She will now be entering Chantier Multiplast in Vannes, ready to be switched to her new colours of IDEC Sport, while being prepared to go on stand-by for the Jules Verne Trophy.

The trimaran has just arrived in Vannes - when will you get your hands on her? "She will officially be handed over on 15 September. But with Ryan (Breymaier, the skipper when she was in the colours of Lending Club), we are spending a few days together for the handover process. Yesterday in very fine weather, we delivered the boat to Vannes. She was lifted out of the water at Multiplast, where she will be decorated in the colours of IDEC Sport. Meanwhile, we are removing some equipment and the sails, removing the Lending Club branding and between the two of us, Ryan and I, looking at everything that needs to be done on the boat. There are all the little jobs that need to be done after the charter period, while I’m looking at what improvements can be made as we look forward to the Jules Verne Trophy…"

What improvements exactly are you planning to make? "We shall be fitting systems to protect the helmsman and the crew on the winches taking care of the sheets. I think that these positions are too exposed for the Southern Ocean, as it gets very wet there. They need to be better protected for the watches in that part of the world with handholds on to avoid getting swept overboard by the waves. We also need to install a watermaker, as well as a system to dry the waterproofs and boots. In fact, this is very interesting, as it means we can be lighter with less gear and fewer clothes on board than would be required without this equipment. We’re looking at minor points like these… To sum up, we are getting the trimaran into round the world mode to face the hostile Southern Ocean."

How long is this work going to take? "That will rather depend on the weather, as there isn’t enough room in the shed so we are on the hard at Multiplast, but let’s say that in three weeks or a month, we should have finished. We also have to adapt the smaller mast and fit two new sails. I hope that we will be out there sailing on 7th or 8th October."

So the countdown has begun? "You could put it like that. The clock is ticking. We knew before that the boat was fast and Ryan and his crewmen proved that grabbing some new records. They did what they wanted to do and are very pleased… Now, we’re really getting going. This is the time for getting things ready, and we shall be announcing the crew later. We shall set off with six sailors on board and for the moment we have seven on our list, as we need a substitute, just in case. All that requires things to be organised… and that’s what we’re doing for the moment."


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