Groupama has won the Challenge Mondial Assistance having crossed the finish line at 0604 hours and 22 seconds today
Groupama has won the Challenge Mondial Assistance having crossed the finish line at 0604 hours and 22 seconds today. In driving rain and storms Franck Cammas and his crew, comprising Franck Proffit, Ewen Le Clech, Jean-Baptiste Levaillant, Ronan Lucas and Benoît Briand, sailed in to first place after 9 days, 15 hours, 4 minutes and 22 seconds at sea, averaging 11.68kts boatspeed.
Having taken the lead on 13 May at 0800, less than 48 hours after the start of the 2,700 mile race from Cherbourg Octeville (France) to Rimini (Italy), Groupama lost it again a couple of times but on 17 May regained it once again and never looked back managing to hold off the ever-threatening Lalou Roucayrol on Banque Populaire.
Cammas commented after the finish: “Conditions were hellish. Just two reefs in the mainsail and 45 knots of wind. It veered round 90° for no reason. There was a big squall with lightning. All our electronics went down and our three GPS too. We didn’t sleep at all during the night. The weather’s been terrible since we’ve been on the coast. I really thought Banque Populaire was going to be in front, so he must have made more mistakes than us (laughs). They were 20 miles away which is nothing, it was close, really close.”
The remaining boats in the fleet are gradually making their way across the finish line at Rimini. Recent arrivals include Bonduelle skippered by Jean Le Cam, taking third position, with Michel Desjoyeaux in Géant fourth.