Jacques Vapillon / www.vapillon.com

Range and diversity

A look forward to next weekend's Mini Transat entry

Sunday September 13th 2015, Author: James Boyd, Location: France

One of the charms of the Mini Transat îles de Guadeloupe is the wide selection of sailors taking part. You find people who have travelled great distances to come and compete while others who have the race on their doorstep in Douarnanez. There is also great range in terms of experience and age. The variety is what makes the race so special, one that embraces the diversity.

Many participants have ambitions to become professional sailors. This is the case with France's Julien Pulvé and Clément Bouyssou from France as it is for Belgian entry Jonas Gerckens and Patrick Girod from Switzerland. They all dream of making this their career and all hope to win the race which would give them a significant step up on their career path.

For others, the Mini Transat îles de Guadeloupe is a break, time off from their usual activity. This is the case for Thomas Guichard who works in a large shop in Rennes and who has decided to take an unpaid year off work to take part. There are also a number of entries that work year round in jobs that are related to the marine world, be it a rigger, engineer, sailing instructor… Meanwhile others are there for the adventure, these include Carl Chipotel who is a fire-fighter in Guadeloupe, Arnaud Machado a landscapist and Guillermo Cañardo from Spain is an accident and emergency doctor in Tarragona.

Some have come from very far. Katrina Ham moved from Australia to Lorient two years ago to prepare for her dream race the Mini Transat. Xi Jingkum, a sailing instructor from Qingdao, has arrived accompanied by his wife and son. For others the start is on their doorstep; Olivier Taillard lives nearby in Quimper for example.

The age range of the competitors is also impressive. The two youngest are Quentin Vlamynich, 22 and Nicolas d’Estais, 23, while at the opposite end of the age spectrum is 56 year old Carlos Lizancos or Hervé Aubry, 54. There are over 34 years of age difference between the youngest and the oldest competitor.

Then there is a wide range of experience, ranging from old hands to first timers. For example Davy Beaudart will be concluding his seventh season racing Minis, at present aboard his latest boat, a Raison designed Proto scow. He is a race favourite and plans to demonstrate how valuable his experience in previous races will be. However there are talented newcomers and the likes of Mathieu Bordais will want to prove him wrong having only started racing Minis this year. With an Olympic background, he hopes to be one of the surprise rising talented sailors the Mini seems to produce each year.

Race Director, Denis Hugues, announced during the skipper briefing that the prologue is to be cancelled: “While conditions are not dreadful, the prologue is meant to be fun for all and the gusts and rain storms would mean this could turn into an unpleasant day for all on the water."


Latest Comments

Add a comment - Members log in

Latest news!

Back to top
    Back to top