Please select your home edition
Allen Brothers

TF35 2024: New team and fresh influx of crew

by TF35 Trophy 21 May 22:26 PDT 24-26 May 2024

After a long winter break, racing for the TF35 high-performance one-design foiling catamaran resumes this week with a new team joining the fleet and crew changes on all the boats ahead of the TF35 Nyon Cup. The first of a six-event series raced on Lake Geneva in Switzerland.

Eight months ago, season three for the TF35 concluded in Malcesine, on Lake Garda, in Italy. Throughout the 2023 season, Esteban Garcia's Realteam Sailing was an exceptional force, winning all seven events. For 2024, skipper Jérôme Clerc and tactician Sébastien Col's biggest challenge will be to keep the momentum: "This year's objective for Realteam Sailing is even more difficult. When you win everything, the bar is set high, and you can only do worse," Clerc points out.

To keep the team dynamics fresh for 2024, Realteam has recruited Swiss SailGP sailors Jeremy Bachelin on the mainsheet and Eliot Merceron as bowman.

"We're aiming for quality sailing. Our training sessions enabled us to integrate the new crew members and build our team spirit and performance, preparing us for the first regatta. The competition will be tough, with the new software smoothing out the boats' performance, making the fleet even tighter. We'll have to be creative to stay ahead," he adds.

Last season, Yann Guichard and Dona Bertarelli's Spindrift Racing was the biggest challenger to Realteam's lead. For 2024, the team has rebranded to Sails of Change and will run a two-boat programme, with Guichard handing the helm and crew of Sails of Change 10 (was Spindrift) over to mainsail trimmer Duncan Späth.

At 26, Späth is the youngest helm in the fleet, but having sailed with tactician Yann Jauvin and his crew for the last three years and guided by Xavier Revil, the team is easily a contender for the podium.

"Last year, I was in Yann's (Guichard) crew on the mainsail trimming and I've competed in three TF35 seasons, so I know exactly the challenge ahead of us," says Späth. "Both Sails of Change teams have a lot of potential, and we're targeting areas where we know we can make further progress. That's our aim from the start of the season."

Guichard will return this season with a brand new boat, Sails of Change 8, and a brand new crew led by French 49er olympian Noé Delpech as tactician alongside sailors François Morvan, Bruno Mourniac, Adrien Mestre and Solune Robert.

"The TF35 circuit is extremely competitive. It features some of the best sailors in the world," explains Guichard, Skipper/Helmsman and President of the Sails of Change sailing team. "We're looking forward to revealing our full potential over the course of the six events in the 2024 season. It's going to be a great year racing against determined opponents."

In third place overall at the end of 2023 was Bertrand Demole's Ylliam XII - Comptoir Immobilier. Just one point off second, the team was on the event podium all season, winning the Genève-Rolle-Genève long-distance race. This year, Thomas Le Breton will be taking over tactics from Erwan Israel, while ETF26 skipper Matthieu Salomon steps onboard as bowman.

"We were happy with our season. But with the adjustments we've made this year, we need to put things into perspective and be very realistic," explains Ylliam XII - Comptoir Immobilier's Billy Besson. "What we want is to get to know each other and try to work efficiently together. The most important thing is group cohesion on the boat, but the desire to perform remains the same."

Guy de Picciotto's ZEN Too also has a fresh influx of crew for this season with 44cup bow woman Celia Willison taking over boat captain duties and spare crew, 69F sailor Valentin Sipan stepping onboard as headsail trimmer and French olympian Franck Citeau joining as coach.

The ZEN Too team always seems to be 'in the hunt', but struggles to put together a consistent series as helm Loïc Forestier admits: "We set our goals three years ago and have tried to make progress on as many aspects of the project as we can. Last year, a deep result at the Bol d'Or Mirabaud affected our annual ranking and our result at the end of the year didn't reflect the progress we felt we had made."

"We have integrated three new members into the team and have focussed on the data this spring during training with the help of Franck (Citeau) as coach. We've adopted a different approach, and most importantly, we are focusing on hours on the water," Forestier adds.

Having joined the fleet for the first time at the start of the 2023 season Julien Firmenich's Ylliam 17 hopes to continue its ascent with improved consistency after scoring second at the Genève-Rolle-Genève and fourth in the Bol d'Or Mirabaud long-distance races.

For 2024, they will be leaning on the experience of their all-star crew, including SailGP grinders Ed Powys and Stewart Dodson and Swiss sailors Nelson Mettraux, Guillaume Rol and Matthieu Ravussin.

"Ed and Stew bring a constant search for performance and valuable experience. Nelson and the local talent do an outstanding job, they know the lake like the back of their hand; it's like they've been sailing there since birth. It makes for a very cool combination with unique diversity and know-how. We're enjoying sailing together and feel better prepared this year, so we're looking forward to racing and competing," explains Firmenich.

The TF35 Nyon Cup hosted by Société Nautique de Nyon will start this Friday, 24 May. To follow the race tracking visit

Related Articles

Sails of Change wins thrilling Bol dOr Mirabaud
Lake Geneva sees the team's fifth win Sails of Change has taken the team's fifth win in one of the most exciting recent editions of the iconic Bol d'Or Mirabaud on Lake Geneva. Posted on 16 Jun
Sails of Change 8 wins 85th Bol d'Or Mirabaud
Masters of the long-distance race in a TF35 Sails of Change 8 have proved themselves as masters of the long-distance race in a TF35, winning the 85th Bol d'Or Mirabaud in 6h22m24s after winning the Geneve-Rolle-Geneve last weekend. Posted on 16 Jun
2024 TF35 Mies Cup overall
Consistency key as Realteam Sailing Esteban Garcia's Realteam Sailing, helmed by Jérôme Clerc, was the top-scoring boat on a testing day of shifting, light breezes on Lake Geneva, Switzerland, for the final of the TF35 Mies. Posted on 9 Jun
Sails of Change 8 wins 60th Genève-Rolle-Genève
Mastering the delicate breeze on Lake Geneva After 04h 41m 02s, Yann Guichard and his Sails of Change 8 crew consisting of tactician Noé Delpech, trimmers François Morvan and Bruno Mourniac, bowman Adrien Mestre, and grinder Solune Robert, mastered the delicate breeze on Lake Geneva to win. Posted on 8 Jun
2024 TF35 Mies Cup Day 1
Racing at its best for day one in Mies It was a solid opening day for the TF35 Mies, the second event of the 2024 tour, with four different race winners over the five races sailed and every boat in the fleet hitting the podium in at least one race. Posted on 7 Jun
TF35 Nyon Cup overall
Final day shakeup sees Sails of Change 8 win in Nyon With a new boat and an all-new crew, Yann Guichard's Sails of Change 8 clinched the first victory of the 2024 TF35 season in a to-the-wire final race at the TF35 Nyon Cup. Posted on 26 May
TF35 Nyon Cup Day 2
Zen Too shines Day two of the TF35 Nyon Cup started with a beautiful but glassy still morning on Lake Geneva. At the 10:00 skippers briefing, PRO Benoit Deutsch delayed the teams ashore, hoping for a repeat of the previous day's afternoon wind. Posted on 25 May
TF35 Nyon Cup Day 1
New team Sails of Change 8 tied at the top with Realteam Sailing After three good races today on Lake Geneva - each with a different winner - Realteam Sailing leads the TF35 Nyon Cup after day one but only on tie break ahead of Yann Guichard's new boat and new crew onboard Sails of Change 8. Posted on 24 May
Six-stop tour of Lake Geneva for TF35 Trophy
The TF35 Nyon Cup will be the first chance for the teams to compete against each other The fourth season of the TF35 high-performance one-design foiling catamaran will kick off this month in Nyon, Switzerland, with the first of six events on Lake Geneva. Posted on 9 May
TF35 Malcesine Cup 2 overall
Realteam Sailing wins every event of the season to be crowned 2023 TF35 champions In an impressive show of skill, skipper Jérôme Clerc, tactician Sébastien Col and the crew of Realteam Sailing have clinched the sixth and final event victory of the 2023 TF35 season and the overall season title. Posted on 17 Sep 2023
Lloyd Stevenson - AC ETNZ 1456x180px BOTTOMHyde Sails 2022 One Design FOOTERMySail Crew