All posts by Simon Jourdan

An exceptional race.

An apocalyptic crossing of the English Channel with about a dozen teams who have abandoned, the charm of the Irish coasts, the legendary Fastnet Lighthouse followed by a calm and nerve-racking period, and finally a very exciting finish: this was the 34th Mini Fastnet. As Thomas Coville puts it: “It’s an exceptional race with diverse challenges”. On top of that, a new speed record was set, making this year a memorable 34th edition of the Mini-Fastnet. The looks and smiles of the sailors on arrival tell you about the intense and fantastic adventure that they just had.
Last Friday we celebrated in particular the two champions who, like last year, won the Mini-Fastnet: Axel Tréhin in proto and Ambrogio Beccaria in series. It was also the end of three busy weeks for the team of volunteers from the Marie-Agnès Péron Trophy and the Mini-Fastnet, two races that add to the reputation of Douarnenez among the Mini races.
The adventure continues for the competitors of the Mini circuit, with the Transgascogne at the end of July and the Mini-Transat in September, for some of them.
Thank you all! See you next year!

Daoulic 6th!

12h46m57s Thursday June 20: Ronan Jezegou, from Brest, and the race’s local, Hervé Corlay from Douarnenez, finished at a great 6th place in this 34th Mini-Fastnet, on the 692.

“We used the indicator and overtook! “exclaims Ronan.

“The start was very sporty, I’ve never been so fast for so long with a sailing boat!” says Hervé. They are very happy that they have only caught up and gained places throughout the course, with great conditions, topped by the emergence of the legendary lighthouse in the fog.

It was a wonderful experience for Hervé, who was racing in Mini for the first time.

The podium in series

4h12’38s Thursday June 20: Ambrogio Beccaria and Alberto Riva win the Mini-Fastnet in the series category.

5h58m00s Thursday June 20: Nicolas D’Estais and Sam Goodchild, on the 905, finished at the second place.
Nicolas D’Estais: “I’ve never been so fast, the way up to the Fasnet was pretty rough. I learned a lot from Sam”. Super happy with the result, he remembers his teammate’s philosophy: “At one point, we spent more than 4 hours without seeing anyone… Sam reassured me that you can’t be overtaken by an entire fleet without realizing it!”
Sam Goodchild is a team member of Thomas Coville and is delighted with this first Mini experience.

6h18m37s Thursday, June 20: Amélie Grassi and Davy Beaudart, on the 944, crossed the finish line, at the third place.
Amélie: “They were solid” when talking about the winners Ambrogio Beccaria and Alberto Riva. After the English Channel, Amélie and Davy quickly realized that there was no Maxi left in front of them. Even if she deplores some mistakes, Amélie is still happy and is sure to have fought well in this race.
On his side, Davy really enjoyed the way up to Fastnet. He is really pleased with the racing conditions, as well as the splendid coastal landscapes of Ireland. He is very happy with this 2019 edition.

The rest of the fleet will continue to arrive until late tonight.

The awards ceremony is scheduled for tomorrow, Friday 21 June at 6:00pm at the “Maison du nautisme” in Tréboul.

First place for Ambrogio Beccaria and Alberto Riva, both surprised!

4h12’38s Thursday June 20: Ambrogio Beccaria and Alberto Riva win the Mini-Fastnet in the series category.

“When we saw the Maxi coming in the English Channel, we said to ourselves, alright, for sure they’ll be in front of us” But Ambrogio and Alberto never saw them again (and for good reasons!). They did their own race, often competing with the prototypes. “A perfect race, but very wet” says Ambrogio ” zero problem, and at the Fastnet it was amazingly beautiful! ».

For Alberto, it was a race for the Maxi, and he is delighted to take his first win on the Mini-Fastnet, after winning the prologue three times.

Ambrogio, for his part, wins the Marie-Agnès Péron Trophy twice in a row and the Mini-Fastnet twice in a row!

Arrival of Cerfrance

1h49m15s Thursday, June 20

It was the first offshore journey for this boat. And the test run was quite successful! Tanguy Bouroullec and Rémi Aubrun finished in a fine third place.

We remember that just before England the 969 stopped for a while before setting off again at a good speed. It was at this point that the crew lost the use of the starboard rudder. The leeward rudder for the long tack to Ireland, which made the situation complicated.

“In the English Channel, we wanted to not exceed 17 knots to finish the race. When there is no wind, the foils transform the boat into a flying carpet, it’s quite crazy! “says Tanguy. While Rémi says in a smile: “This is the beginning of a legendary boat”.

Arrival of the first group

At 10:00 pm:

Chaffoil, the 969, with Tanguy Bouroullec and Rémi Aubrun, seems to have escaped from the small group of 13. Less than 30 miles from Douarnenez, south of Molène, they are in a good situation to maintain their third place until the finish line.

On the series side, the 943, Ambrogio Beccaria and Alberto Riva, are still in the lead and 37 miles away from the finish, with a speed of 6.3 knots. 6 miles behind, the 905, Nicolas D’Estais and Sam Goodchild, have made a good comeback to the second place. He is now fighting with the 944, Amélie Grassi and Davy Beaudart to keep this place.

The arrival of all these teams is scheduled between 1:00 and 4:00am next morning, if the wind remains the same.

Behind, the fleet of the second group is very spread out due to the lack of wind over the last 24 hours. The fleet is still more than 80 miles from the finish.

A new Mini-Fastnet record

 “It was such a fast way up! “says Thomas Coville.

Thomas Coville and Axel Tréhin won the race and set a new Mini-Fastnet record by completing the race in 3 days 4h58’26s at an average speed of 7.86 knots. (The previous record was 3 days 08h52’19s from 2017 and was set by Ian Lipinski and David Raison)

After passing the Fastnet, the duo experienced an electric blackout and sailed without a weather vane or compass from the Irish Sea.

“It was really great, the navigation was amazing. Axel is really very, very strong” said Thomas Coville, obviously delighted with the experience: “It’s an exceptional race, a complete journey”.

“We didn’t eat hot food, crossing the English Channel was very sporty. It was a big fight with François Jambou and Pascal Fievet. They didn’t give up, we had to give everything we had! “said the crew of the 945.

 

On the pontoon, Axel and Thomas thank Fabio Muzzolini (716) once again warmly for helping them out with a daggerboard just before the start.

Axel Tréhin won his second Mini-Fastnet in a row, it was Thomas Coville’s first attempt.

For François Jambou and Pascal Fievet: “The consolation prize is to be 60 miles ahead of the rest of the fleet! ». They are of course a little disappointed: “I tried everything and I didn’t find the solution,” François said. There was also some little damages on the 865: a winch torn off and the daggerboards stuck.

On the pontoon of Tréboul, the four sailors enumerated their many interactions throughout the race, which was intense from one end to the other. “We couldn’t reach Ireland any faster”, according to François. Axel agrees.

François Jambou and Pascal Fievet completed their Mini-Fastnet in 3 days 5h58’20s, at an average speed of 7.76 knots.

These two crews arrive with a huge lead over the fleet. But the race continues! The next arrivals are expected in the middle of next night. We notice that in the series, Ambrogio Beccaria and Alberto Riva on the 943 have manoeuvred with a master hand and have a good lead over their competitors.

These two crews arrive with a huge lead over the fleet. But the race continues! The next arrivals are expected in the middle of next night. We notice that in the series, Ambrogio Beccaria and Alberto Riva on the 943 have a good lead over their competitors.

THE LAST AND THE FIRST

At 11:00 pm

The last one, the 917, skippered by Marie Pousset and Yan-Yvon Le Dantec, is about to round the Fastnet.

160 miles further south, François Jambou and Pascal Fievet have taken the lead and are now sailing at nearly 11 knots towards Douarnenez.

The first arrival are finally expected at noon tomorrow, according to the last routing.

Returning at a gentle pace.

 At 6pm, the Mini fleet is clearly divided into 3 groups :
The first, more than 25 miles from the leaders (945 and 865), is led by the 800. In this first group, we find the prototypes: 950, 679, 888, 900, 969, 969, 759 and the proto-series 956; as well as the 5 Pogo 3 (series): 947, 943, 944, 905 and 902. They are all moving at a speed of about 4.5 knots.
The second group consists of 29 boats, with the 802 and the 962 at the head. More scattered, this group seems to be looking for wind.
The last group, the rest of the fleet, has been stuck west of the DST for almost two hours.
The 961 probably missed the Stags mark and after passing the Fastnet Lighthouse, they bypassed the DST to pass the South Cardinal again.
At the front of the race, the 945 and 865 are still side by side and do not let go. The smallest mistake could cost the victory.
A routing, done at the end of the afternoon, gives an estimated arrival on Thursday June 20 between 3:00 am and 5:00 am.