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Southern Spars

Mini Transat - We went after our dream

by Solene Rennuit on 8 Dec 2013
2013 Mini Transat ©Jacques Vapillon / Mini Transat 2013
In the Mini Transat, with each arrival brings the same deep happiness, the same relief to be able to say we went after our dream. They do not all express it in the same way, some are more exuberant than others. But everyone knows they battled their fears, sometimes against the hostile elements, at times with boredom. And they won the battle.

We expected no less of Nico Boidevezi. The skipper of Nature Addicts put on a show this morning as he crossed the finish line : with acrobatics on the bowsprit and a noisy expression of his relief at the passing line, the Alsatian browser has remained true to his reputation. And yet there he tied up his third Mini Transat. One might think, by dint of his accrue miles across the Atlantic, that he would become jaded, but one would be unfamiliar with the curious mixture of masochism and intense pleasure that comes with Mini ... This race is unique because it is as much about physical pleasure of skiing at the water's edge, than the permanent discomfort and travel in solitude. Paradoxically, without the sting, this competition across the Atlantic would not have is piquancy.

It is therefore no a coincidence that a few days after their arrival, the competitors continue to flit around the race village, hesitating to break the bonds that united them when they found themselves alone on the ocean, facing themselves. They all express it differently : the talk of technical problems, the choice of trajectories, the DIY tips, are all subtle devices to return them once again to this exceptional adventure. Crossing the Atlantic aboard a Mini is not trivial.

For the majority of the fleet, the witching hour has not yet come. They will have to fight again to win the last miles in a complicated weather regime. A storm front is currently developing to the north of the West Indies, breaking the trades, causing sudden changes of wind capable of rotating 180 degrees in minutes and varying by more than 30 knots at the same time. For Louis Segre (Roll my Chicken), these last few miles will be made easier because the boats of the organisation, family and friends are there to encourage the sailor in his last meters. They forget fatigue, minor injuries and rain soaking them to the bone to eagerly grasp the fun of these last few minutes.

Others must wait until Sunday to live those moments. Behind Louis, Michele Zambelli (Fontanot) and Annabelle Boudinot (Agro 650) continue sailing almost glued-together battling to gain ninth place. They could see Renaud Mary (www.runo.fr) blowing off their politeness by arriving on a more southerly route with a better wind angle. This three could arrive in Pointe-à-Pitre in the heart of the Caribbean night.

Behind them, the peloton of the series boats will tumble in with a sprint finish between Alberto Bona (onlinesim.it), Tanguy Le Turquais (Terreal Dream Childhood) and Jean-Baptiste Lemaire (L’œuvre du Marin Breton). Still further behind, another duel opposes Jérôme d'Aboville (Bel) and Damien Audrain (Gerinter). For them, the time to begin their introspection is after the finish line.

Last minute information: Louis Segre (Roll my Chicken) has crossed the finish of the Mini Transat at 13h32m47s local time (17h 32m 47s GMT).

Cegelec / Eurovia Ranking (prototypes) at 16.00 (GMT +1)

7. Nicolas Boidevezi (719 – Nature Addicts) arrived at 12h 10mn 14s (GMT+1)
8. Louis Segré (679 – Roll my Chicken) + 21 nm
9. Michele Zambelli (342 – Fontanot) + 90.3 nm
10. Annabelle Boudinot (791 – Agro650) + 90.6 nm
11. Alan Roura (284 – Navman) + 145.9 nm

Yslab Ranking (series boats) at 16.00 (GMT +1)

4. Renaud Mary (www.runo.fr) with 104.5 nm to finish
5. Alberto Bona (Onelinesim.it) + 54.1 nm
6. Tanguy Le Turquais (Terréal Rêve d’Enfance) + 54.2 nm
7. Jean-Baptiste Lemaire (L’œuvre du Marin Breton) + 59.9 nm
8. Jérôme d’Aboville (Bel) +81.5 Mini Transat website
Zhik Dinghy 660x82NaiadKilwell - 5

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