Please select your home edition
Edition
Raymarine 2021 Element - LEADERBOARD
Product Feature
Zhik ZK Seaboot 900
Zhik ZK Seaboot 900

Encouraging start to the Figaro 3 season for Phil Sharp in the Solo Maitre CoQ

by OceansLab 29 Jun 2020 17:03 BST
Phil Sharp, OceansLab Figaro 3 © Vincent Olivaud / www.olivaud.com

Phil Sharp threw himself into the deep end of the Figaro class with the Solo Maitre Coq, which proved to be an invaluable training race ahead of September's target and main event, the Solitaire du Figaro.

The race identified areas which exceeded Sharp's expectations, racing in the leading pack, neck to neck against some of world's best including Vendée Globe winner Armel le Cléac'h and Gildas Mahé, among the most experienced.

"As my first race in Figaro 3 it was really encouraging to be able to stay in contact with the leaders and battle against some big names. I was pleased with my overall routine and focus, never losing the hunger to fight. I kept a close eye on my competitors and used their speed as a reference to learn and optimise the boat's configuration." Commented Sharp.

Sharp, who maintained a top 10 position through the majority of the race finished on an adjusted 16th place, with a race time of 2 days, 22 minutes and 47 seconds, arriving 49 minutes and 22 seconds after the eventual winner.

Areas for development

Saturday morning's windy and downwind conditions did not present the fun and fast ride home Sharp had longed for. Instead he fought to keep control of the boat, broaching close to 20 times with a suspected steering or rudder problem.

"The final leg was like controlling a wild bull! The boat was a nightmare and I have never experienced anything quite like it before. I suspect it is a problem with the newly fitted rudders, which will be a priority to resolve ahead of next month's race, the Drheam Cup." Continued Sharp.

New to the Figaro 3, striking a balance between pushing the best speeds out of the boat and defining tactics was a challenge for Sharp.

"The race was a great opportunity to benchmark myself against other skippers on boat speed. I now know that I must make improvements in reaching under the gennaker.

"On reflection I spent too much time pushing the boat for speed, with less time for strategy. This lost me more than a mile of distance in the final morning as the shift I expected did not arrive. Then after rounding the final offshore mark a wave caught the spinnaker mid-hoist, dragging it into the water. Fortunately I managed to pull the sail back on board avoiding any damage, but it cost me a lot of time." Continued Sharp.

Objective: Solitaire du Figaro

Sharp's aim is to compete in the pinnacle event, the Solitaire du Figaro, starting in September, for which his the team are looking for further sponsorship. Until then he will have two more significant development opportunities in solo races, the Dhream Cup and the Solo Concarneau.

"It's been nine years since I competed in the Solitaire du Figaro, France's solo offshore racing championship. The race attracts the world's best single-handed sailors, and I am really eager to be a part of this elite competition." Confirmed Sharp.

Related Articles

Team The Magenta Project at Spi Ouest-France
Banque Populaire Grand Ouest French Figaro Nationals I am sat reflecting on the events of the past two weeks, and by coincidence my phone has reminded me that it is exactly one year ago since myself and Pamela Lee set out from Dun Laoghaire to break the Double Handed Round Ireland Record. Posted on 18 Oct
2021 Marina Militare Nastro Rosa Tour, day 22
After a month of competition, the tour has come to an end The event, organized by Difesa Servizi SpA, Marina Militare and SSI Events under the aegis of the Italian Sailing Federation and supported in Venice by the Compagnia della Vela, closed with the award ceremony. Posted on 28 Sep
2021 Marina Militare Nastro Rosa Tour, day 19 & 20
Home Waters Victory for Italy at Hempel Mixed Two Persons Offshore World Championship Italian team Claudia Rossi & Pietro D'Alì have been crowned winners of the 2021 Hempel Mixed Two Person Offshore World Championship after a hard-fought final leg to Venice. Posted on 27 Sep
Hempel Mixed Two Person Offshore Worlds overall
Italian team Claudia Rossi & Pietro D'Alì have been crowned winners Italian team Claudia Rossi & Pietro D'Alì have been crowned winners of the 2021 Hempel Mixed Two Person Offshore World Championship after a hard-fought final leg to Venice. Posted on 26 Sep
2021 Marina Militare Nastro Rosa Tour, day 19
The final leg of the Hempel Double Mixed Offshore World Championship On the eve of the final leg (Marina di Ravenna - Venice) of the Hempel Double Mixed Offshore World Championship, the main event of the Marina Militare Nastro Rosa Tour, three crews are fully entitled to fight for the final success. Posted on 25 Sep
2021 Hempel Mixed Two Person Offshore Worlds Leg 3
Title to be decided on final sprint to Venice The outcome of the 2021 Hempel Mixed Two Person Offshore World Championship will be decided at the finish line in Venice on Friday 24 September. Posted on 24 Sep
2021 Marina Militare Nastro Rosa Tour, day 17
Giovanna Valsecchi and Andrea Pendibene sail to a resounding victory on Leg 2 Giovanna Valsecchi and Andrea Pendibene have sailed to a resounding victory on Leg 2 of the 2021 Hempel Mixed Two Person Offshore World Championship in Italy. Posted on 23 Sep
2021 Marina Militare Nastro Rosa Tour, day 16
Slender Leg 2 lead for Giovanna Valsecchi and Andrea Pendibene Giovanna Valsecchi and Andrea Pendibene have sailed to a slender but useful lead on Day two of Leg 2 of the 2021 Hempel Mixed Two Person Offshore World Championship in Italy. Posted on 22 Sep
An exciting 52nd edition of La Solitaire du Figaro
Now heading for 2022! 'Where legends are born!' is the strapline of La Solitaire du Figaro. One reason that legendary sailors are made and crowned on the La Solitaire du Figaro is the magnitude of the challenge. Posted on 21 Sep
Figaro Beneteau 3 – Quintessentially French
Can the Figaro Beneteau 3 be summed up in a headline or just one or two sentences? Maybe... She's quite happy to slap you back and forth across your face, or go off and sulk at a corner table with an espresso martini and deliver you scorchingly deathly stares. Posted on 21 Sep