Tour de France à la Voile 2012 - Bay racing ahead of offshore leg 3

Tour de France a la Voile 2012. Photo:© Jean-Marie Liot/ASO
© Jean-Marie Liot
The third offshore leg of the Tour de France à la Voile 2012 starts tomorrow at 11.00am.

After a long offshore leg 2 against the wind from Dieppe to St Cast Le Guildo, the first technical races of this Tour de France à la Voile 2012 started today at 12.30am.

Racing commenced in 10 knots from the west south west, inside the bay at the front of the Fort La Latte fortress. The course was 1.4 nm long.

The first race started off well with Bretagne Crédit Mutuel Elite first at the upwind mark. Just behind them was Daniel Souben’s team from Dunkerque with BAE Systems third.

After hoisting spinnakers the fleet compressed. Courrier Dunkerque 3 led at the second upwind mark, in front of Nicolas Troussel’s men, then Elodie Jane Mettraux and Jérôme Clerc’s Swiss. Souben managed to distance his rivals and Courrier Dunkerque 3 kept control and the finish. They also kept their lead in this edition of the Tour de France à la Voile.

After a short break the Race Committee set a new course, less than 1.5nm long.

Nantes St Nazaire E. Leclerc git a great start, as did Courrier Dunkerque 3 and Ville de Genève Carrefour Prévention.

The boats continually crossed, a new leader appearing after every cross. Manoeuvres were sleek and as the boats round the marks, the teams seem at ease with their M34s.

‘During the second upwind leg, Nantes St Nazaire E. Leclerc took the lead by a couple of lengths. TPM Coych and Bretagne Crédit Mutuel Elite were pushing hard behind. In that situation you have to choose between attacking Nantes or controlling your followers to stop them’ explained Souben.

‘We went for the second option because the ones just behind us were also our rivals in the overall ranking,' said Souben.

The team from Nantes finish ahead of the Dunkerque and take their first victory.

However Courrier Dunkerque 3 managed to hold their first place overall and increased their margin over TPM Coych, and now hold a 25 point lead. Souben and his crew keep the blue leader’s spinnaker.

Nantes St Nazaire E. Leclerc are now sixth overall after a good day today.

'The presence of Damien Iehl helped us to realize we were not pushing the boat as hard as possible,' confessed Gildas Mahé. 'Iehl pushed us further and we saw how it worked!'
Île de France too had some ‘new blood’ onboard with Armel Le Cleac’h. The skipper of the Open 60 Banque Populaire arrived this afternoon to be Île de France navigator until Talmont St Hilaire.

The boats will leave St Cast Le Guildo for Roscoff tomorrow. This will be a 75 nm offshore leg, and will be a tactical and tricky one in upwind conditions with a medium to strong breeze.

Provisional general ranking after 15 races:
1 - COURRIER DUNKERQUE 3 (FRA 08) - Daniel Souben / 408 pts -SPI BLEU
2 - TOULON PROVENCE MEDITERRANEE –COYCH (FRA 07) - Fabien Henry / Tugdual Becquemie / 383 pts
3 - BRETAGNE - CREDIT MUTUEL ELITE (FRA 18) - Nicolas Troussel / 376 pts
4 - VILLE DE GENEVE – CARREFOUR PREVENTION (SUI 19) - Jérôme Clerc / Elodie Mettraux / 373 pts
5- BAE SYSTEMS (OMA 4) - Cédric Pouligny / 364 pts
6- NANTES SAINT NAZAIRE - E.LECLERC (FRA 6) - Corentin Douguet / 358 pts
7- ILE DE FRANCE (FRA 1) - Vincent Aillaud / 331 pts
8 - CÔTES D'ARMOR BRETAGNE (FRA 14) - Josselin Le Moine / 295 pts
9 - BRED / La NORMANDIE (FRA 15), skippé par Arthur Herreman / Baptiste Choquenet / 294 pts
11 - TU DELFT (NED 1) - Pieter Van Notten / 279 pts
12 - ISKAREEN (GER 11) - Christiane Dittmers / Sönke Bruhns / 266 pts
13-MARTINIQUE - MEDIABAT (FRA 2) - Mathieu Mourès / 262 pts
14 - FASCINATING SEAS INTERNATIONAL (RUS 023) - Léonid Klepikov / 229 pts
15-BIENNE VOILE - SRS (SUI 22) - Lorenz Mueller / François Kunz / 171 pts

Provisional amateur ranking after 15 races:
1 - Ville de Genève - Carrefour Prévention, Elodie Jane Mettraux / Jérôme Clerc, 330 pts- SPI ROSE
2 - Côtes d'Armor Bretagne, Josselin Le Moine, 258 pts
3 - BRED / La Normandie, Arthur Herreman / Baptiste Choquenet, 256 pts

Provisional technical ranking after 12 races:
1 - COURRIER DUNKERQUE 3 (FRA 08) - Daniel Souben / 276 pts
2 - Bretagne Crédit Mutuel Elite, Nicolas Troussel, 264 pts SPI ROUGE
3- NANTES SAINT NAZAIRE - E.LECLERC (FRA 6) - Corentin Douguet / 252 pts

Provisional offshore ranking after 2 races:
1 - Toulon Provence Méditerranée - COYCH, Fabien Henry, 167 pts SPI VERT
2 - COURRIER DUNKERQUE 3 (FRA 08) - Daniel Souben / 164 pts
3 - Ville de Genève - Carrefour Prévention, Elodie Jane Mettraux / Jérôme Clerc, 159 pts