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2nd Transat New-York Vendee Les Sables d'Olonne - Preview

by IMOCA Globe Series 22 Jul 17:54 BST 16-25 June 2020
Transat New-York Vendée 2016 © Thierry Martinez / Sea&Co

An event on the IMOCA Globe Series 2018-2021 programme, the next edition of the Transat New-York Vendee - Les Sables d'Olonne will set sail from New York on Tuesday 16 June 2020, with an initial ETA in France's Vendée region of 25 June.

Following on from Jérémie Beyou's (Maître CoQ) win in 2016 in nine days, 16 hours, 57 minutes and 49 seconds, the second edition of the New-York Vendee - Les Sables d'Olonne in 2020 promises to be a top-flight match gathering together the majority of the skippers signed up for the 9th edition of the Vendée Globe.

20 to 25 IMOCA skippers will likely take the start of the next Transat New-York Vendee - Les Sables d'Olonne compared with 14 for its inaugural edition in 2016. The Transat New-York Vendee - Les Sables d'Olonne now has a fixed slot in the four-year IMOCA Globe Series as the last event before the Vendée Globe, which will set sail a few months later.

"Crossing the North Atlantic in June generally offers up ideal conditions," explains Antoine Mermod, President of the IMOCA Class: "This transatlantic will be the final race in the Globe Series before the Vendée Globe so it will serve as a genuine 'warm-up' prior to the singlehanded round the world race. Having just participated in The Transat, the competitors will have attained a fairly high level of preparation, which bodes well for a top-rate competition. A lot of transatlantic races set sail from France, but the New-York Vendee - Les Sables d'Olonne is unique in that it's the only one to finish in France, in the Vendée region. The finish in the famous channel into Les Sables is sure to be a very emotional moment once again... With this race, the Vendée region will be able to show just why it's the place to be for event organisation. It's a very important partner to the IMOCA class and this race reinforces the strong bond we have."

For the President of the Vendée, Yves Auvinet: "Having the opportunity to organise a major event is a significant asset for a tourist region like the Vendée. This second edition of the Transat New-York Vendee - Les Sables d'Olonne will serve as additional entertainment to kick off the summer season in style. The Council of the Vendée Department will be pulling out all the stops in terms of the entertainment and promotion of the event to make this race a nautical event par excellence as well as a popular festival. We're expecting the first competitors to arrive from 25 June with a prize-giving on 28 June. In so doing, the Vendée is demonstrating its powerful links to the sea, thus reinforcing its image as a leader in the sailing domain".

For the Mayor of Les Sables d'Olonne, Yannick Moreau: "It's an international event, which will kickstart the tourist season. It's also a boost for the tourist industry and the reputation of the Town of Les Sables d'Olonne. We'll pull out all the stops to ensure the public is in the channel to welcome in the skippers."

List of potential participants in the New-York Vendee - Les Sables d'Olonne 2020:

Fabrice Amedeo, Romain Attanasio, Alexia Barrier, Yannick Bestaven, Jeremy Beyou, Conrad Colman, Manuel Cousin, Clarisse Cremer, Charlie Dalin, Samantha Davis, Benjamin Dutreux, Kevin Escoffier, Clément Giroud, Pip Hare, Boris Herrmann, Ari Hussela, Isabelle Joschke, Stéphane Le Diraison, Erik Nigon, Giancarlo Pedote, Yoann Richomme, Alan Rroura, Thomas Ruyant, Damien Seguin, Kojiro Shiraishi, Sébastien Simon, Maxime Sorel, Alex Thomson, Armel Tripon, Nicolas Troussel, Denis Van Weynbergh.

Revival: the broad outlines of the 2016 edition

We recall the key difficulties of this race across the North Atlantic, in the month of June that is fairly synonymous with downwind conditions and very high speeds. The start off Manhattan and the passage beneath the famous Pont de Verrazzano are a colourful spectacle that precedes the stress of an intense race, the start of which skims past the Banks of Newfoundland and the ice drifting down from the north...

On 29 May 2016, there were fourteen skippers taking the start of this first edition and the beginning of the race was marked by a number of competitors colliding with unidentified floating objects (UFOs). Five skippers (Yann Eliès, Armel Le Cléac'h, Morgan Lagravière, Jean-Pierre Dick and Pieter Heerema), had to divert to Newport to effect repairs. One of the favourites, Armel Le Cléac'h would be forced to retire from the race. At the end of this Atlantic sprint, it was Jérémie Beyou (Maître CoQ) who took the win in the Vendée, ahead of Sébastien Josse (Edmond de Rothschild) and Alex Thomson (Hugo Boss) who completed the podium.

Reminder of the Top 5 in the Transat New-York Vendee 2016:

1 - Jérémie Beyou (Maître CoQ)
2 - Sébastien Josse (Edmond de Rothschild)
3 - Alex Thomson (Hugo Boss)
4 - Paul Meilhat (SMA)
5 - Vincent Riou (PRB)

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