Rolex Fastnet Race: full speed ahead for the MACIF Trimaran


29/11/2019 - 12:12

The MACIF trimaran crew are about to begin a commando operation on the Rolex Fasnet Race, which will start on Saturday, 3 August 2019. François Gabart and his crewmen have decided to leave the Bay of Port-la-Forêt as late as possible, to present themselves at the starting line, without stopping in Cowes harbour marina beforehand, where 463 crews will be getting ready for the legendary British race, which will make manoeuvring in the harbour and quite difficult. 

Back in the water again since late May, the MACIF trimaran has undergone several improvements focusing mainly on her reliability and her centre of gravity. “Racing with several crew members means we can sail really fast,” explains the skipper, “and that’s exactly what we’re going to do.  It’s also a good test for the MACIF trimaran before the Brest Atlantiques.”

The MACIF trimaran crew for the Rolex Fastnet Race will include:

François Gabart (skipper), Gwénolé Gahinet, Pascal Bidégorry, Antoine Gautier, Guillaume Combescure, and Jérémie Eloy (media man).

Six Men for the Best Performance

Gwénolé Gahinet, François Gabart’s co-skipper in the Brest Atlantiques (start on 3 November) is new to racing on the MACIF trimaran, whose performance he has been trying to measure since he started training in mid July. Pascal Bidégorry, an expert on the MACIF trimaran (win in the Transat Jacques Vabre 2015), will bring along his experience and his well-known steering techniques. Antoine Gautier (manager of the MACIF team studies), Guillaume Combescure (in charge of the MACIF team’s performance) and Jérémie Eloy (media man) will complete this crew of six in which no role is defined, with the exception of the leading role of François Gabart. “We are competing in the Rolex Fastnet Race to do as well as possible,” says Antoine Gautier. Almost everyone will take a hand at the helm, trimming and winches. Even Jérémie, whose role will primarily be to act as our media man, will also lend a hand.”

If weather permits, the MACIF trimaran will try to beat the excellent record held by Loïck Peyron and his crew since 2011. Even though the Ultimes have made huge technological progress by adopting foils since then, it will still require some help from the weather to beat his time of 1 day, 8 hours, 48 minutes, and 46 seconds, which has gone down in the annals of the legendary Fastnet.

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