The word is that the dark horse of the race has Mich Desjoyeaux worried


I’ve written a synopsis here about how the British skippers might do in the Vendée Globe. But this isn’t just a question for those of us from the UK; it’s also of great interest here in France.

One question that particularly interests race fans and skippers alike is how the super-powerful new boats, Artemis and Pindar, will do. Neither has yet raced against French rivals.

The consensus is that Artemis is too new a boat and Jonny Malbon has too few sea miles on board as yet to be a great threat. But Pindar? Well, the new Bahrain Team Pindar is a very different matter.

A little bird tells me that no less a figure than race favourite Michel Desjoyeaux is extremely concerned about Pindar. The potential combination of the Juan Kouyoumdjian rocketship with the highly able Brian Thompson as skipper has been gnawing at him.

Mich Des must think he has everyone else’s strengths and weaknesses worked out. But Pindar is the dark horse of the fleet. The rumour is that even the president of the race committee, Sylvie Viant, thinks this is a boat so fast it could win the race.

Psychologically speaking, this is a useful position for Brian Thompson to be in. The quiet, statuesque Englishman is Sphynx-like at the best of times. “Suits me,” he smiles enigmatically, as he walks around with a faint smile playing on his lips.