Please select your home edition
Edition
SailX 728x90

Vendee Globe - Jean Le Cam takes fifth place

by Vendee Globe on 7 Feb 2013
Vendee Globe finish for Jean Le Cam (FRA) / Synerciel after 88D 00H 12mn 58sec - 5th Jean-Marie Liot / DPPI / Vendée Globe © http://www.vendeeglobe.org
In the Vendee Globe, Jean Le Cam crossed the finish line at 12h:14m:58s UTC (local time France minus one hour) this Wednesday 6th February to end a gale stricken final passage across the Bay of Biscay and secure fifth place overall after a long, protracted battle with English skipper Mike Golding, an adversary which he has enjoyed many previous encounters with, not least the 2004-5 edition of the race when Le Cam took second ahead of Golding’s third.

Le Cam’s elapsed time is 88 days 00 hours 12 min 58 sec. His average speed over the theoretical course of 24,394 miles is 11.5kts. He actually sailed 27,575 miles on the water at an average speed of 13.1 kts.

He finished 9 days 21hrs 56 mins 18 sec after race winner François Gabart (Macif) and 1 day 21hrs 09 mins after fourth placed Jean-Pierre Dick. Sixth placed Golding had just 88 miles to the finish when Le Cam crossed the line.


Jean Le Cam has once more proven himself one of the most experienced, talented and wily skippers on the Vendée Globe course, not only delivering a good result considering the relative lack of racing miles he had completed in the IMOCA class since he abandoned in the 2008-9 edition, but again the charismatic Breton soloist has shared his experience with the public widely, passionately and with typically understated humour throughout the highs and lows of his race.

In fact Le Cam could be considered lucky to have made it into the race at all. At nine months before the start he still had hardly any backing for his quest to take the start line of his third Vendée Globe. Since his dramatic capsize on VM Materiaux before Cape Horn in the last edition it had seemed like an uphill struggle for Le Cam to land a major backer. And starting and not finishing the last Barcelona World Race, due to a broken mast, did not help his cause, especially considering the straitened economic times.

It was through the help of the Absolute Dreamer organisation that Jean Le Cam was able to set off on this race. In February when he started the project the clock really was ticking. He took the former boat of Loick Peyron, which lead the last Vendée Globe. It became Renault ZE and completed the last Barcelona World Race which it finished undamaged in any way, but the Farr design was given a serious weight loss programme to try and allow Le Cam to be more competitive with the newer generation boats.

Given the limited time before the start, Le Cam chose to focus his efforts on the preparation of the boat rather than training against his contemporaries in Port La Fôret. 'To compare you need to be evenly matched otherwise it is useless. I prefer to work to be ready and save my energy instead of pretending against guys who have been training for two years.'

The race itself runs something close to expectations. The latest generation boats sailed by the top seeds open the gap early. Speed potential and weather conditions which generally favour the leaders, play to the strengths of the newer boats. But Le Cam finds himself quickly locked into a group of close contemporaries he knows well, Mike Golding and Dominique Wavre. Crossing the Doldrums is good for the trio who pull back some miles on the leaders.


On entering the Roaring Forties, King Jean gets a rope around the bulb of his keel and the solo skipper finds himself with no choice but to dive to get rid of it. As soon as he has succeeded in the operation he makes sure, typically, that he sends images of his adventure. Short Le Cam videos are informative and entertaining, like when he learned of the penalties for the alleged infringement of the traffic separation zones off Cape Finisterre.

On the morning of December 7 Jean Le Cam and Dominique Wavre found themselves side by side on the waters of the Southern Ocean. Two of the most experienced racers, friends with huge respect for each other, sailed within a few metres of each other on a flat sea watched by an attendant albatross. It was one of the iconic images of this race. They sail in company for a few hours before their courses diverge. On 22nd December he gives his rivals the slip and in three days is nearly 500 miles ahead of Golding. And across the Pacific he maintains a relatively comfortable lead over his pursuers. He passed Cape Horn in fifth position close to the tip of Tierra del Fuego in the early morning with the Cape Horn light still illuminated. But in many respects this was the start of an Atlantic climb which was purgatory.

The South Atlantic offered little mercy to Le Cam and the group who pursued the leading four boats. Winds were variable, the seas often confused, and the most struggled with inaccuracies of the weather models and the climb from Cape Horn to the Equator was tough. Increasingly Le Cam had to watch the comeback of Mike Golding, who from being nearly 500 miles behind in the South Pacific came back to 0.7 of a mile as the pair converged courses between Rio and Recife. But to the Equator and beyond Le Cam managed to hold his lead over his British rival.

But the finale to their race proved to be a chess game around the Azores high pressure. Le Cam, who had the small speed advantage, went west – sailing more miles but to be rewarded with faster downwind and reaching angles – whilst Golding went east, fighting lighter winds but trying to sail shorter miles. Le Cam’s popularity in the race is evident at the finish. The crowds in Les Sables d’Olonne always ask to dream the Vendée Globe dream, but Le Cam – more than most – lives the dream and shares it from the heart in glorious technicolour.

The Vendée Globe of Jean Le Cam in figures

Biggest distance covered in 24 hours : 432 miles (18kts average) on the day of 30 November
- Les Sables – Equator : 11d 20h 08mn (does not beat his own record from 2004-1005 of 10d 11h 28mn)
- Equator to Cape of Good Hope : 12d 16h 40mn (record JP Dick 12d 02h40mn)
- Good Hope – Cap Leeuwin : 14d 03h 25mn (record F Gabart 11d 06h 40mn)
- Cap Leeuwin – Cap Horn : 20d 03h 03mn
- Cap Horn – Equator : 16d 11h 41mn
- Equator – Les Sables d’Olonne : 12d 17h 14min









Réveil musclé ce matin à bord de SynerCiel by VendeeGlobeTV


Ça fume ce matin autour de SynerCiel by VendeeGlobeTV

http://www.vendeeglobe.org/" target="_blank">Vendee Globe website

Related Articles

Shape of next Volvo Ocean Race revealed at Southern Spars - Part 1
Southern Spars has been confirmed as the supplier of spars for the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. In mid-April, Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Stopover Manager Richard Mason outlined the changes expected for the 40,000nm Race during a tour of Southern Spars 10,000sq metre specialist spar construction facility. A total of up to seven boats is expected to enter, but time is running out for the construction of any new boats.
Posted on 3 May
Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr
From Olympic flag to Olympic Gold and maybe another
The Sydney Olympics was a Sailing double 470 Gold event for Australia. Having won the 420 World Championship in 2000, the feeder class to the 470, while still at school in Australia young Matt Belcher was given the honour of carrying the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Posted on 28 Apr
The Road to Rio now 99 days short
The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win. The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres, at some World championship events and Weymouth World Cup but for many crews: 'It's 106 miles to Chicago we got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses.' Whoops wrong movie.
Posted on 28 Apr
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
Thou doth protest too much, me thinks
And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen about now. At any rate, it is simply an adaptation of Lady Gertrude’s original line. We merely seek to use it as a way to demonstrate that when there is a lot of brouhaha going on, the smoke screen ultimately ends up as a lovely, colourful flag as to the real intent behind it.
Posted on 18 Apr
An interview with Jake Beattie about the 2016 Race to Alaska
In 2014, Jake Beattie and a few friends envisioned the Race to Alaska. Now, it’s time this wild race’s second edition. In 2014, Jake Beattie-the executive director of the Northwest Maritime Center in Port Townsend, Washington, and a few friends hatched the bold idea of a human-powered race to Ketchikan, Alaska, took flight. They decided that their human-powered race would start in Port Townsend, Washington and run to Ketchikan, by way of the inside passage between Vancouver Island and British Columbia.
Posted on 14 Apr
Children of the Internet, Rio and Hong Kong
I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. The kind of conversations I have with her run along these lines.... In the olden days we did not have television until I left school and they had a thing called print magazines, that reported events between two weeks and four months after they happened. And her sceptical response... Hoh! Daddy, Hoh!
Posted on 14 Apr
Go fast girls - 49er FX sailors Paris Henken and Helena Scutt
Paris Henken and Helena Scutt will be representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics, which will be their first Olympiad. American’s Paris Henken (20) and Helena Scutt (23) recently won a berth to represent the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the high-performance 49er FX skiff, a goal that the team has been working on for almost three years. While this is their first Games, writing them off as Olympic newbies would require ignoring their recent results and their strong teamwork.
Posted on 13 Apr
World Sailing Cup V3 - A Dead Rat in a Shoe or Spring Daffodils?
While a host of major sailing events go from strength to strength, the Sailing World Cup has very major issues. Last night my Irish better half was sitting beside me on the sofa watching an Australian version of the popular TV Cooking Program My Kitchen Rules on a tablet with her headphones while I was watching Diehard II for the seventeenth time (it’s a boy thing) on TV. She suddenly spluttered and laughed, took off her headphones and motioned for me to mute Diehard. (Seriously!!)
Posted on 9 Apr
Barz Optics - Kids rangeT Clewring AC72Bakewell-White Yacht Design