sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery

 

Sail-World.com : Thomas Coville on Sodeb'Os North Atlantic crossing

Thomas Coville on Sodeb'Os North Atlantic crossing

'Water view for the first test sails of the 105 feet trimaran Sodeb’O, skipper Thomas Coville, arriving in Sydney Harbour.'    © Christophe Launay

Setting out from New York 5 days earlier, the French sailor Thomas Coville, the skipper of the trimaran Sodeb’O, beat the legendary solo North Atlantic record under sail on Tuesday 15th July at 07 hours, 17 minutes and 20 seconds; a record held since 2005 by Francis Joyon.

Francis Joyon’s time on Idec in 2005: 6 days 4 hours, 1 minute and 37 seconds

Thomas Coville’s time on Sodeb’O: 5 days, 19 hours, 29 minutes and 20 seconds (to be approved by the WSSRC)


Already the holder of the 24 hour distance record since January 2008, with 619.3 miles at an average of 25.8 knots, this latest victory is clearly not down to chance. At 40, this multihull specialist is a sailor with one of the largest number of miles single-handed under his belt, thanks to his racing background in the 60 foot class with a second place in The Transat 2004 and a fabulous podium finish in the Route du Rhum in 2006. Since 2005, the young sailor from La Trinité, father to two children, has been committed to his loyal sponsor Sodeb’O in a single-handed record programme, which enabled him to become successively the fastest man around the British Isles, between Spain and the Bahamas and between Miami and New York.

This single-handed North Atlantic crossing on a 32 metre multihull is an amazing achievement, particularly given that Thomas didn’t benefit from exceptional conditions as was the case for Play Station. The latter completed the crossing in crewed configuration in 2001 in a time of 4 days 17 hours along the direct route without ever performing a single change of tack. Favourable for the first three days, manageable and without surprises between the currents, fog and dense shipping, the weather conditions over the last 48 hours proved to be particularly testing and tactical for Thomas.

In order to get the boat making as much headway as possible, the skipper spent hour after hour at the helm, constantly trimming the sails 'which enables you to keep optimal balance and gain speed and comfort. In this way you are sparing on yourself as well as being sparing as regards the wear and tear on a boat under extreme stress'. Over the last 48 hours, Thomas thus performed a series of gybes (to change direction with the wind on the tail and move the sails from one side of the boat to the other): 'To gybe is not very difficult' explains the skipper, 'it takes 10 minutes but those 10 minutes are extremely stressful as you can’t afford to make a mistake. If the mainsail, which measures 227 square metres, switches to the other side of the boat too brutally, you break battens, you reduce the boat’s performance and therefore your chances of victory. At these speeds, the slightest mistake is fatal. The North Atlantic record is something a lot of people think about but few people achieve'.

This victory is something Thomas has had to hunt down. 'These records,' he continued an hour after crossing the line, 'are also stories and voyages which associate a sporting challenge with a human adventure. I was looking for scale. Through sailing I found a personal balance. I understand who I am. At sea, we are who we are, beneath the cover' concluded Thomas who admitted having been at 100% for 5 days, devoted to driving the boat 'almost slave-like', snatching two to three minutes of sleep here and there, that is around two hours in total for the first three days. That’s not to mention the last 48 hours during which I remained standing the whole time so as not to sit down and give it my all'.

For the skipper of Sodeb’O, this maxi-multihull which is also the largest boat built for a single man 'is a world, a dragonfly, a dream. This boat is a monster of technology, a dragonfly on the same scale as the sea, a dream of human proportions. It’s a guitar with tight strings, which works like a wind instrument. Inside it is monastic but concise, spatial and simple. Even if it’s a little pretentious, I would like everyone to look at this boat with the eyes of a child or an expert, and understand it. I want there to be no more questions, or if there are then solely those of the imagination'.

Designed by Nigel Irens and Benoît Cabaret, also the architects of Francis Joyon’s IDEC, the maxi-Sodeb’O has already traversed a fair amount of the world’s oceans. Built and launched in Australia in June 2007, this 32 m long three hulled machine (105 feet) and 16.55 m wide (55 feet) craft is equipped with a 35 m mast and can carry up to 650 square metres of sail area. Thomas, who has never hidden the fact that he is a fan of reliability, has not hesitated in racking up the miles since its launch. In order to benefit from the exceptional performance of his ‘dragonfly of the seas’ as much as possible and enable him to sail a succession of almost 600 mile days, he and his team have worked hard for the past 13 months, even making the boat nearly a ton lighter since its launch.

As for his partner Sodeb’O, which has been loyal for nearly 10 years, Patricia Brochard, co-president declared just a few minutes after the finish: 'Emotion has got the upperhand. We are proud. It’s a victory for freedom, commitment and generosity, values which are dear to Thomas and Sodeb’O. For the past 10 years, we’ve experienced highs and lows, and some difficult moments that we’ve got through together. Another word springs to mind, that of loyalty, the spirit of a family clan, which enables you to go ever further'.




by Kate Jennings translation

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=46532

12:12 PM Wed 16 Jul 2008 GMT






Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.


News - USA and the World





A complete recap of the most successful Melges 20 World Championship by International Audi Melges 20 Class Association,












ISAF Santander - Upwards path for Austrian women's 470 crew + video by Luissa Smith, International 470 Class Association,
























2014 Rolex Big Boat Series - Farr 40 Day 4 by William Wagner, San Francisco


























GBR aiming for first ever Nacra 17 Games berth at Santander Worlds
Volvo Ocean Race: Man and sail overboard as Leg 0 serves up drama
ISAF Sailing World Championships Santander 2014 – Images by Dan Ibsen
Santander Worlds – already a spectator success
ISAF Sailing World Championships Santander 2014 - Day 3 morning report
Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 - Tales from the extreme
Volvo Ocean Race: Latest starter wins opening race
2014 J/70 World Championship - Healy, Abdullah, Becker and Borges win
2014 Rolex Big Boat Series - Full-blown, once again
ISAF Worlds - Americans jump up Laser and Laser Radial leaderboard
2014 Rolex Big Boat Series - Farr 40 Day 3
America's Cup: Luna Rossa sailing with two foiling AC45's + Video
Extreme Sailing: Emirates Team NZ retain second overall
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Rio Olympic Laser spots snapped up
Rolex Swan Cup - All set for final showdown
Upper Midwest sailors need help to take it to the next level
ISAF Sailing World Championships - RS:X action begins in Santander
ISAF Sailing Worlds, Santander - Americans rise in Laser and Radial
Extreme Sailing Series - A remarkable penultimate day’s racing + Video
Marseille One Design - GC32 GDF Suez unstoppable in the light
Rolex Swan Cup - Day 3 images by Carlo Borlenghi   
ISAF Sailing World Championships - Images of the leaders in Santander   
Rolex Big Boat Series - Good day for Double Trouble   
Rolex Big Boat Series - Day 2 images by Erik Simonson   
Royal Cup Marina Ibiza - TP52 fleet ready for tricky race tracks   
Rolex Big Boat Series - Plenty maintains lead   
2014 Asia Pacific Student Cup - Count down begins   
Extreme Sailing Series: Live coverage of Day 3 - view here   
Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 - Going away   
Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 - Practice makes perfect   
2014 J/70 World Championship - Contrasting conditions on Day 4   
Rolex Big Boat Series - 50 years of big boat racing: a retrospective   
2014 Rolex Big Boat Series - Day 2   
Snipe Western Hemisphere and Orient Champ: Rios takes the Championship   
Volvo Ocean Race: Leg Zero signals start of the significant racing   
Extreme Sailing Series: Physically demanding racing for BAR on Day 2   
Emirates Team NZ: Holding second overall after Day 2 in Istanbul   
Extreme Sailing Series: A force to be reckoned with in Istanbul +Video   
ISAF Sailing Worlds - Day 1 images by Jesus Renedo and Pedro Martinez   
Marseille One Design: GC32's Armin Strom storms ahead on day 2 + Video   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT