Please select your home edition
Edition
Spinlock - Deckvest - 728x90

The Mini shake-up in the Mini-Transat La Boulangère

by Aurélie Bargat on 7 Oct 7 October 2017

In both the prototype and production boat categories, the situation is becoming clearer at the head of the race. Ian Lipinski (Griffon.fr) and Arthur Léopold-Léger (Antal XPO) are going it alone at the front of the leading pack, whilst Clarisse Crémer (TBS) is extending right away from her pursuers.

Swiss skipper Valentin Gautier (Shaman – Banque du Léman) and Erwan Le Draoulec (Emile Henry) look to be the only sailors still in a position to challenge her takeover. However, behind the favourites, there is massive upheaval.

In order to understand all the jostling in the rankings over recent days, take a look at the respective positions of the skippers just 48 hours before. In the production boat category, after Rémi Aubrun's long reign (Alternative Sailing – Constructions du Belon), it was the turn of Tanguy Bouroullec (Kerhis Cerfrance) to take over the regency for a few hours, in readiness to hand over power to the new queen of the Pogo 3s, Clarisse Crémer (TBS). Her place at the top of leaderboard is much deserved, given how regularly she and travelling companion Erwan le Draoulec (Emile Henry) have impacted the front of the pack since the start in La Rochelle. In that time, some sailors have fallen victim to the light airs, including Rémi and Tanguy, who are now positioned over 50 miles shy of the head of the race. However others, those more familiar with evanescent breeze and hunting down gentle puffs of air, have reaped the benefits, as is the case for Valentin Gautier and Frédéric Moreau (Petit Auguste et Cie), the latter a regular on the Alpine lakes. These light airs are also favourable to the older generation boats, like the Pogo 2 and the Nacira 6.50, which have a smaller wetter surface and have got right back into the action as a result. Like Frédéric Moreau, Yann Burkhalter (Kalaona) has also sailed an excellent leg to get back into the top 10, with some equally great performances posted by Mathieu Lambert (Presta Services Bat) and Estelle Greck (Starfish), who have both been making steady progress for the past four to five days since they found their sea legs.

Ian, Arthur and the others...

In the prototype category, with the exception of Arthur Léopold-Léger, who must really be savouring his time on the racetrack after the abrupt end of his Mini-Transat 2013, the dilemma for those in hot pursuit of Ian Lipinski essentially comes down to "how to limit the damage" in the face of the utter domination by the cheeky Raison design. A chasing trio made up of Simon Koster (Eight Cube Sersa), Erwan Le Mené (Rousseau Clôtures) and Romain Bolzinger (Spicee.com) are nearly a hundred miles off the pace of the leader this evening. Patrick Jaffré (Projet Pioneer), sixth, is 130 miles behind the leader, whilst Julien Héreu (Poema Insurance) and Thibault Michelin (Eva Luna) have been relegated to some 200 miles astray of the head of the fleet. In these conditions, the age of the boats is no longer the main point of reference. As such, Jonathan Chodkiewiez (Tasty Granny) on one of the oldest prototypes, is managing to stay in contact with Charlotte Méry (Optigestion – Femmes de Bretagne) and Quentin Vlamynck (Arkema 3), who would surely have preferred other conditions to test the potential of his highly innovative machine.

Saturday Night Fever

A way off the front of the pack, the strategic considerations are somewhat different. Aboard Mariolle.fr, Julien Bozzolo hasn't forgotten his disco ball and playlist so he can treat himself to what must be particularly stimulating breakfasts for both his stomach and his ears. It's party time too for Camille Taque (Foxsea Lady) as she has managed to resolve her power issues and can now communicate with her playmates by VHF once more. The news is also good for the Croatian sailor. Indeed, currently in Porto, Slobodan Velikic (Sisa 2) is trying to repair his bowsprit and a hole in the deck resulting from a broken stanchion. Apparently, the familiar Mini solidarity has kicked into action once again since Portuguese sailor Antonio Fontes, who competed in the Mini in 2015, has rallied together his friends to track Slobodan down and give him a helping hand.

Ranking at 15:00 UTC:

Prototypes
1 Ian Lipinski – Griffon.fr – 305 miles from the finish
2 Arthur Léopold-Léger – Antal XPO – 32.8 miles behind the leader
3 Simon Koster –Eight Cube Sersa- 56.6 miles behind the leader
4 Erwan Le Mené – Rousseau Clôtures – 95.7 miles behind the leader
5 Romain Bolzinger – Spicee.com - 98.7 miles behind the leader

Production boats
1 Clarisse Crémer – TBS 418.5 miles from the finish
2 Erwan Le Draoulec – Emile Henry – 25.2 miles behind the leader
3 Valentin Gautier – Shaman – Banque du Léman – 29.7 miles behind the leader
4 Rémi Aubrun – Alternative Sailing – Constructions du Belon - 56 miles behind the leader
5 Tanguy Bouroullec – Kerhis Cerfrance – 63 miles behind the leader

www.minitransat.fr/en

Related Articles

Mini-Transat La Boulangère Leg 2 day 15
Make way for the young Amidst all the fanfare of the finish, the race continues... Indeed, there have been a succession of arrivals in the port of Le Marin, but for the overwhelming majority of the racers, there are still some days to go. Posted on 15 Nov
Mini-Transat La Boulangère Leg 2 day 13
Vedran Kabalin's boat has dismasted Things are complicated for Vedran Kabalin (Eloa Island of Osinj), who has managed to contact Race Management to alert them to the fact that his boat has dismasted. Posted on 13 Nov
Mini-Transat La Boulangère Leg 2 day 12
A friend indeed Whilst the fleet carves out a route between the latest squalls in what is a very shifty trade wind, each of the skippers has his or her own method of keeping up morale and making the most of this adventure, right the way to the finish. Posted on 12 Nov
Mini-Transat La Boulangère Leg 2 day 11
No lasting armistice out on the ocean... 99 years ago, the armistice of 11 November 1918 heralded the end of the First World War. This Saturday, on this its anniversary on the great Atlantic chessboard, by way of a nod to history. Posted on 11 Nov
Mini-Transat La Boulangère Leg 2 day 10
A storm brewing You could get a sense of it from looking at the competitors' trajectories. The trade wind, never totally steady at the best of times, has been ruffled by stormy squalls, which are causing significant variations in the wind. Posted on 10 Nov
Mini-Transat La Boulangère Leg 2 day 8
A touch of the blues in the big blue These are what the regulars call the crucial days, those where you realise that from here on in there's no way back and that there are no options until you reach Martinique. Posted on 8 Nov
Mini-Transat La Boulangère Leg 2 day 7
Traverse in convoy… or not Virtually in single file, the solo sailors competing in the Mini-Transat La Boulangère are attacking their oceanic crossing on a WNW'ly heading, slightly above the direct course. Posted on 7 Nov
Mini-Transat La Boulangère Leg 2 day 6
In search of the lost wind There are now six sailors making a pit-stop to effect repairs at Mindelo with the arrival of Thibault Michelin (Eva Luna), victim of rudder damage a few days earlier. Posted on 6 Nov
Mini-Transat La Boulangère Leg 2 day 5
The funnel settles the accounts Between the islands of Santo Antao and San Vicente, the competitors have to make their way along a channel spanning seven miles wide. Posted on 5 Nov
Mini-Transat La Boulangère Leg 2 day 3
Breakage colours play After two days of racing in this second leg of the Mini-Transat la Boulangère, the fleet is already lamenting a number of issues. For some, there's nothing irremediable and they should be able to effect repairs at sea. Posted on 3 Nov