Archive | Franck Cammas

Franck Cammas expected to win the Route du Rhum later today

Posted on 09 November 2010 by Valencia Sailing

At 0500hrs (CET) this morning Cammas on Groupama 3 was still sailing in a contrary southerly breeze of between 10 and 12 knots. Maintaining his present VMG he is expected at Basse-Terre at between 1200hrs and 1400hrs (CET) and at the finish line some two hours later. Cammas has been maintaining the required exceptionally high work rate since yesterday, tacking solo the giant trimaran on which he sailed round the world fully crewed to win the Jules Verne Trophy. Since very early yesterday morning Cammas had completed more than a dozen tacks, and at 0400hrs this morning passed 12 miles north of Antigua, sailing through between the chain of Caribbean islands. By 0800hrs he had just 76 final miles to go, tacked back on starboard tack and was ten miles to the SSW of Antigua.

“The end of a Transatlantic race is always long. It feels like you have finished but you have not.” Pointed out the Groupama 3 skipper this morning, positioned 76 miles from the Basse Terre buoy by 0500hrs (CET). If the wind conditions and direction remain as is, the green tri should reach the SW of Guadeloupe in seven to eight hours.

Franck Cammas approaches the finish line of the Route du Rhum – Banque Postale. Guadeloupe, 9 November 2010. Video copyright Route du Rhum – Banque Postale

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Franck Cammas expected to win the Route du Rhum later today

Posted on 09 November 2010 by Valencia Sailing

At 0500hrs (CET) this morning Cammas on Groupama 3 was still sailing in a contrary southerly breeze of between 10 and 12 knots. Maintaining his present VMG he is expected at Basse-Terre at between 1200hrs and 1400hrs (CET) and at the finish line some two hours later. Cammas has been maintaining the required exceptionally high work rate since yesterday, tacking solo the giant trimaran on which he sailed round the world fully crewed to win the Jules Verne Trophy. Since very early yesterday morning Cammas had completed more than a dozen tacks, and at 0400hrs this morning passed 12 miles north of Antigua, sailing through between the chain of Caribbean islands. By 0800hrs he had just 76 final miles to go, tacked back on starboard tack and was ten miles to the SSW of Antigua.

“The end of a Transatlantic race is always long. It feels like you have finished but you have not.” Pointed out the Groupama 3 skipper this morning, positioned 76 miles from the Basse Terre buoy by 0500hrs (CET). If the wind conditions and direction remain as is, the green tri should reach the SW of Guadeloupe in seven to eight hours.

Franck Cammas approaches the finish line of the Route du Rhum – Banque Postale. Guadeloupe, 9 November 2010. Video copyright Route du Rhum – Banque Postale

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Franck Cammas heads south in the Route du Rhum – La Banque Postale

Posted on 01 November 2010 by Valencia Sailing

[Source: Groupama] Twenty four hours after a spectacular start, Franck Cammas is continuing his course at a hellish pace. Heading southward, the skipper of Groupama has already passed Cape Finisterre and is beginning his descent along the Spanish coast. Accredited with fourth place due to her SE’ly position, in reality Groupama 3′s position is doubtless much envied by her rivals.

“We’re trying to pick our way along the eastern edge of the zone of high pressure. For this, it was necessary to go fast and drop down the coast at full pelt by keeping the gennaker aloft. The sailing was borderline at times but we came out of it just fine” said Franck during a quick radio link-up with Press HQ for the Route du Rhum La Banque Postale at midday.

An attacker through and through, the skipper of Groupama 3 benefited from a powerful, fast boat to traverse the Bay of Biscay at high speed despite a sizeable swell and a dark night.

Contacted via telephone at 1600 hours, Jean-Luc Nélias, one of Franck Cammas’ weather advisors gave his view of the situation: “The tricky section is in Groupama 3′s wake now. It was important not to get caught up by the ridge of high pressure. Franck is carrying everything aloft, as he was at the start, namely full mainsail, staysail and gennaker. He’s in good shape and managing to sleep in 20 minute chunks”.

By sailing at an average of 23 knots, Groupama 3 is making up nearly 7 miles an hour on the leader of the ranking, Thomas Coville. Positioned further North and West, his Sodebo is logically closer to the finish, but has less pace. This trend could continue over the next few hours, that is unless Thomas decides to strike right out to the West.

Even further to the North and further West, Sydney Gavignet has definitively opted for the great circle route. This is synonymous with the shortest route but also the most testing as the bulk of it will be raced in headwinds. Skippering a trimaran which is theoretically a little less speedy than the other favourites, he’s trying his luck by typically committing himself to an option.

Astern but practically following the same line as Groupama 3, Francis Joyon and Yann Guichard are also seeking to make headway to the south. In a less well established wind, they’re just a few knots off the pace.

So the daggers are drawn then and it’s a fairly uniform fleet in terms of performance, despite the disparity of the trimarans. Once again it’s the sailors who will make the difference on what is a demanding course, where the weather may well have a few surprises up its sleeve…

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Franck Cammas heads south in the Route du Rhum – La Banque Postale

Posted on 01 November 2010 by Valencia Sailing

[Source: Groupama] Twenty four hours after a spectacular start, Franck Cammas is continuing his course at a hellish pace. Heading southward, the skipper of Groupama has already passed Cape Finisterre and is beginning his descent along the Spanish coast. Accredited with fourth place due to her SE’ly position, in reality Groupama 3′s position is doubtless much envied by her rivals.

“We’re trying to pick our way along the eastern edge of the zone of high pressure. For this, it was necessary to go fast and drop down the coast at full pelt by keeping the gennaker aloft. The sailing was borderline at times but we came out of it just fine” said Franck during a quick radio link-up with Press HQ for the Route du Rhum La Banque Postale at midday.

An attacker through and through, the skipper of Groupama 3 benefited from a powerful, fast boat to traverse the Bay of Biscay at high speed despite a sizeable swell and a dark night.

Contacted via telephone at 1600 hours, Jean-Luc Nélias, one of Franck Cammas’ weather advisors gave his view of the situation: “The tricky section is in Groupama 3′s wake now. It was important not to get caught up by the ridge of high pressure. Franck is carrying everything aloft, as he was at the start, namely full mainsail, staysail and gennaker. He’s in good shape and managing to sleep in 20 minute chunks”.

By sailing at an average of 23 knots, Groupama 3 is making up nearly 7 miles an hour on the leader of the ranking, Thomas Coville. Positioned further North and West, his Sodebo is logically closer to the finish, but has less pace. This trend could continue over the next few hours, that is unless Thomas decides to strike right out to the West.

Even further to the North and further West, Sydney Gavignet has definitively opted for the great circle route. This is synonymous with the shortest route but also the most testing as the bulk of it will be raced in headwinds. Skippering a trimaran which is theoretically a little less speedy than the other favourites, he’s trying his luck by typically committing himself to an option.

Astern but practically following the same line as Groupama 3, Francis Joyon and Yann Guichard are also seeking to make headway to the south. In a less well established wind, they’re just a few knots off the pace.

So the daggers are drawn then and it’s a fairly uniform fleet in terms of performance, despite the disparity of the trimarans. Once again it’s the sailors who will make the difference on what is a demanding course, where the weather may well have a few surprises up its sleeve…

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Volvo Ocean Race: The French are coming…

Posted on 21 June 2010 by Valencia Sailing

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Video: Groupama 70 races in Transmanche

Posted on 25 May 2010 by Valencia Sailing

Groupama has just published an interesting video, albeit in French, from Transmanche, the maiden race for the French Volvo Ocean Race entry. Created in 1985 by the members of the Yacht Club des Abers, the Transmanche has become a classic over the years. Its 220-mile course is extremely simple, in the form of a return trip between the famous Breton Aber and Plymouth’s breakwater in the UK.

It is a race reserved for crews sailing double-handed, but with a special invite given to Groupama 70 and the boat that ranked second in the Vendée Globe, the IMOCA 60 Britair skippered by Armel Le Cléach. A bit over 75 competitors raced in this year’s Transmanche. Groupama 70 crossed the finish line on Saturday afternoon, having covered 280 miles in around twenty hours, or what amounts to an average speed of 14 knots. “We constantly had a little more wind than that forecast on the grib files. Those one or two extra knots of breeze have a big influence on the average speed” explained Charles Caudrelier on his arrival in Aber Wrach.

For Cammas this was the first chance to test the sailing and shore crew in view of the team’s future races, mainly the RORC Round Britain and Ireland Race, where they will have the opportunity to race against Telefonica. The race is due to start from the Royal Yacht Squadron line on 23rd August. The approximate race distance around the British Isles is some 1760 miles and the first yachts should cross the finishing line about ten days after the start.

Groupama’s VO70 takes her maiden race. Aber Wrac’h, 21 May 2010. Video copyright Groupama

The crew aboard Groupama 70 was the following:
1. Franck Cammas, skipper
2. Damian Foxall, watch leader
3. Jean-Luc Nélias, navigator
4. Charles Caudrelier, piano and trimmer
5. Laurent Pagès, watch leader
6. Sébastien Audigane, helmsman and trimmer
7. Magnus Woxen, helmsman and trimmer
8. Philip Harmer, trimmer
9. Michael Pammenter, number 2
10. Martin Krite, number 1
11. Yann Riou, media man
12. Didier Ravon, guest journalist

While we’re at it, here’s another nice video of how Ericsson 4 became Groupama 70:

Transforming Ericsson 4 into Groupama 70. Video copyright Groupama

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Video: Groupama 70 races in Transmanche

Posted on 25 May 2010 by Valencia Sailing

Groupama has just published an interesting video, albeit in French, from Transmanche, the maiden race for the French Volvo Ocean Race entry. Created in 1985 by the members of the Yacht Club des Abers, the Transmanche has become a classic over the years. Its 220-mile course is extremely simple, in the form of a return trip between the famous Breton Aber and Plymouth’s breakwater in the UK.

It is a race reserved for crews sailing double-handed, but with a special invite given to Groupama 70 and the boat that ranked second in the Vendée Globe, the IMOCA 60 Britair skippered by Armel Le Cléach. A bit over 75 competitors raced in this year’s Transmanche. Groupama 70 crossed the finish line on Saturday afternoon, having covered 280 miles in around twenty hours, or what amounts to an average speed of 14 knots. “We constantly had a little more wind than that forecast on the grib files. Those one or two extra knots of breeze have a big influence on the average speed” explained Charles Caudrelier on his arrival in Aber Wrach.

For Cammas this was the first chance to test the sailing and shore crew in view of the team’s future races, mainly the RORC Round Britain and Ireland Race, where they will have the opportunity to race against Telefonica. The race is due to start from the Royal Yacht Squadron line on 23rd August. The approximate race distance around the British Isles is some 1760 miles and the first yachts should cross the finishing line about ten days after the start.

Groupama’s VO70 takes her maiden race. Aber Wrac’h, 21 May 2010. Video copyright Groupama

The crew aboard Groupama 70 was the following:
1. Franck Cammas, skipper
2. Damian Foxall, watch leader
3. Jean-Luc Nélias, navigator
4. Charles Caudrelier, piano and trimmer
5. Laurent Pagès, watch leader
6. Sébastien Audigane, helmsman and trimmer
7. Magnus Woxen, helmsman and trimmer
8. Philip Harmer, trimmer
9. Michael Pammenter, number 2
10. Martin Krite, number 1
11. Yann Riou, media man
12. Didier Ravon, guest journalist

While we’re at it, here’s another nice video of how Ericsson 4 became Groupama 70:

Transforming Ericsson 4 into Groupama 70. Video copyright Groupama

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Multiplast to build the Groupama VO70

Posted on 07 May 2010 by Valencia Sailing

[Source: Multiplast] Recent holder of the Jules Verne trophy, Franck Cammas and his Sponsor, Groupama, have just signed with the Multiplast boatyard for the construction of a 21 m monohull for the next round-the-world fully crewed race (Volvo Ocean Race 2011-2012).

After building the Groupama III maxi trimaran in 2005-2006, the Groupama Team has renewed its confidence in Multiplast and entrusted the yard with the production of this monohull, based on the plans by Juan Yacht Design. Yann Penfornis, General Manager of Multiplast: “…This new order is wonderful recognition of our know-how. We are all the more proud in that the team in question is particularly demanding of themselves, and also of any of the partners involved in the project. For us, this boat will be an opportunity to compare our work with that of the large foreign teams, who have dominated this discipline for many years…”


Close collaboration
As with the building of every racing boat, Multiplast works in close collaboration with the sailing crew’s technicians. Pierre Tissier, Construction Manager for Team Groupama: “…We have been working with Multiplast for several years, we know each other very well and we communicate openly. We know that we can trust them again to build a reliable, high-performance boat…”

Very strict measurement
At this level of competition, the construction quality should come close to perfection and be as near as possible to the limits required by the very strict measurement rules. Dominique Dubois, President of Multiplast: “… This new boat must be a marvel. In addition, we have had to make new investments, such as an anti-dust paint for the flooring and new curing ovens to guarantee that Groupama will benefit from a new quality close to the demands of the aeronautical or space industry. This is another new step taken by the Multiplast boatyard with regards to quality control. Our experience in the production of parts for the aeronautical industry will be useful to us to take on this new challenge…”

This project propels Multiplast into the very close circle of Volvo 70 builders. Groupama IV is the first boat of this kind to be built in France. This new reference will reinforce the boatyard’s image of excellence in France and abroad. Production has now begun.

With the launch planned for early March 2011, there is no doubt that there will be a lot of activity during the summer in the Multiplast workshops.

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