Please select your home edition
Edition
Absolute Marine

Francis Joyon's legendary quest on hold in New York

by Mer et Media on 17 May 2013
Francis Joyon, IDEC on standby in New York © V. Curutchet / DPPI / IDEC http://www.trimaran-idec.com/
On a legendary record quest, Francis Joyon is at North Cove Marina in New York taking care of his maxi trimaran IDEC. On Thursday 16th May, the official stand-by began as he awaits a weather opportunity to tackle the North Atlantic record between Ambrose Light and the Lizard.

Francis Joyon is in the thick of it. From Thursday 16th May, in association with his faithful router, Jean-Yves Bernot, the helmsman of the maxi-trimaran IDEC has been watching the weather closely.


The goal is to find the right low-pressure area – or preferably one which strengthens off the Gulf of Saint Lawrence – to be able to sail straignt across the North Atlantic in under five days 19 hours and 29 minutes. Or in other words keeping up an average speed of 21 knots… These figures may appear beyond belief and out of reach of ordinary sailors. But Francis Joyon is not just anyone and the maxi-trimaran IDEC is not just any old boat.

Fortunately, as when sailing solo, the task is truly reserved for an elite. We can remember how Ellen MacArthur just missed out on it, and indeed only five solo sailors have managed to improve on the record launched by Bruno Peyron back in 1987. A time beaten by Florence Arthaud, before Bruno Peyron grabbed the record back. Then, there was Laurent Bourgnon and yes, already up there, Francis Joyon. It was in 2005 aboard the first IDEC trimaran (six days and four hours). In 2008, Thomas Coville bettered that time with the record that is still his today after completing the voyage in five days 19 hours and 29 minutes.

'This is not an easy record,' Francis Joyon warned us. 'To keep up such a high average speed, you need to find the right weather and work hard at it all the time without any easing off.'

So that is the real difficulty from a mathematical perspective… while in terms of sailing, he will also have to deal with the legendary mists, marine animals, shipping… and maybe also the wind dropping off as he approaches the coast of SW England.

For Francis Joyon and IDEC, this is a huge challenge. If he pulls this off, Joyon will become the only sailor ever to claim the Grand Slam of outright records. The skipper of IDEC already holds three other record times: the solo round the world record, the 24-hour distance record and the Columbus Route record. It will also be a way for him to gain his revenge after a failed attempt in 2011, when IDEC capsized at the start in New York. An incident that shows just how tricky the task of sailing this incredible wind-making machine can be, and indeed how scary it can be for a solo yachtsman.

The North Atlantic record requires an all-out effort. However, that is something that attracts Joyon, who enjoys taking it to the limit, while making it all look so easy, giving the impression that he is just doing a normal sailor’s job. Two things that are far from being the case in reality.

The five record times so far set on solo crossings of the North Atlantic:

1987 : Bruno Peyron, catamaran, Explorer, in 11 days, 11 hours 46 minutes and 36 seconds
1990 : Florence Arthaud, trimaran, Pierre 1er, in 9 days, 21 hours and 42 minutes
1992 : Bruno Peyron, catamaran, Explorer, in 9 days, 19 hours and 22 minutes
1994 : Laurent Bourgnon, trimaran, Primagaz, in 7 days, 2 hours, 34 minutes and 42 seconds
2005 : Francis Joyon, trimaran, IDEC 1, in 6 days, 4 hours, 01 minute and 37 seconds
2008 : Thomas Coville, trimaran, Sodebo, in 5 days, 19 hours, 29 minutes and 20 Trimaran IDEC website

Doyle Sails NZ - Never Look BackMondo Travel - Americas Cup - 5785PredictWind.com 2014

Related Articles

America's Cup - Racing schedule and sights for fans in Bermuda
Those considering making the trip to Bermuda need to be aware of the race schedule and the different options. With the America's Cup due to get underway in five months time, those considering making the trip to Bermuda need to be aware of the race schedule and the different options. The travel blog extract and images outline some of the tourist attractions in Bermuda, that are available during the gaps in racing, or give an alternative if your team gets eliminated and you need grief therapy.
Posted today at 3:04 am
RNZYS seek Sailing Coach - join the world's leading Youth Program
This new role has been created to assist in the improvement and expansion of the RNZYS training programmes. The Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron is one of the most successful Yacht Clubs in the world and continues to be on the forefront of modern sailing. This new role has been created to assist in the improvement and expansion of the RNZYS training programmes. Reporting to the Sailing Director and Training Manager this role is critical to the core operations of the club.
Posted today at 1:33 am
Collinson FX Market Commentary - Jan 19 - UKP surges on Brexit news
The AUD maintained 0.7500, while the NZD drifted back towards 0.7150, shy of the important technical level of 0.7200. UK PM May quelled many critics with her outline of Brexit and provided some plan for the future. Her vision of the return to a global power in trade was appreciated by markets, with the GBP surging to 1.2300, while overnight employment data remained strong.
Posted on 19 Jan
Le Cléac'h smashes Vendée Globe race record in spectacular style
Dozens of spectator boats took to the water to welcome their new hero back to the French port of Les Sables d'Olonne. Dozens of spectator boats took to the water to welcome their new hero back to the French port of Les Sables d'Olonne.
Posted on 19 Jan
Sailing World Cup Miami – New challenge ahead for the 'legend'
Among the 453 sailors racing out of Regatta Park at Coconut Grove, Robert Scheidt is teaming up with Gabriel Borges Among the 453 sailors racing out of Regatta Park at Coconut Grove, Miami from 22-29 January, Brazil's Robert Scheidt is teaming up with Gabriel Borges in an attempt to master the 49er like he has the Star and Laser.
Posted on 19 Jan
Armel Le Cléac'h wins the Vendée Globe in record time
Armel Le Cléac'h has today won the Vendée Globe, setting a new record for the solo non-stop round the world race French sailor Armel Le Cléac'h has today won the Vendée Globe, setting a new record for the solo non-stop round the world race in the process.
Posted on 19 Jan
RORC Caribbean 600 – Winning ways
American yachts have had a winning streak in this classic race, winning five out of eight editions of the 600-miler. American yachts have had a winning streak in this classic offshore race, winning five out of eight editions of the 600-miler, starting and finishing in Antigua.
Posted on 19 Jan
Preparation well under way for Two Handed Round North Island Race
With less than six weeks till they cross the start line, 29 boats have their preparation well underway With less than six weeks till they cross the start line, 29 boats have their preparation well underway for the 2017 SSANZ Two Handed Round North Island race. This 1200nm race starts Saturday February 25 at 1400hrs off Devonport Wharf and the boats will race Leg 1 to Mangonui, Leg 2 finishing in Wellington, Leg 3 to Napier and the final leg finishing back in Auckland approximately two weeks later.
Posted on 19 Jan
Vendee Globe - Le Cleac'h flying home
Vendee Globe race leader Armel Le Cleac's is on the final tack for the finish of the 2016/17 Vendee Globe Race. Vendee Globe race leader Armel Le Cleac's is on the final tack for the finish of the 2016/17 Vendee Globe Race. At the 0400UTC position report he had 145nm to sail to the finish at Les Sables D'Olonne and was expected to be greeted by a crowd of hundreds of thousands of French sailing fans on Thursday afternoon or early evening local time.
Posted on 19 Jan
Le Cléac'h closes in on Vendée Globe finish line
French sailor Armel Le Cléac'h has one hand on the Vendée Globe trophy this morning as he bears down on the finish line French sailor Armel Le Cléac'h has one hand on the Vendée Globe trophy this morning as he bears down on the finish line in Les Sables d'Olonne, France. At the latest position update Le Cléac'h, skipper of Banque Populaire VIII, was 146 nautical miles from finishing the solo round the world race with a lead of 87nm over second-placed Alex Thomson.
Posted on 19 Jan