— 03. 05. 2024
— 03. 05. 2024

Last night at sea for Amaury Dumortier and Geoffrey Thiriez

To note in this press release:

  • Amaury Dumortier and Geoffrey Thiriez expected to cross the finish line on Sunday morning UTC.
  • They have been leading for the past 10 days
  • The competitors will dock in to the Marina de l’Etang Z’abricots, near Fort-de-France
  • 27 boats are due to finish between Sunday and Monday

It is the final few moments at sea for the competitors in the Cap-Martinique. According to the organisation team’s latest estimates, the duo of Amaury Dumortier and Geoffrey Thiriez might well cross the finish line shortly before midnight (local time) on Saturday, which equates to around 05:00 hours UTC on Sunday. As such, this is the last night at sea in the warm waters of the West Indies for the sailors from northern France. Line honours are theirs for the taking and only a last-minute incident could deprive them of victory in elapsed time. In an email sent to the organisation team, they made no allusion to the promise of a win but were thrilled at the prospect of rekindling their ties with terra firma and their loved ones: “We’re seeing more and more birds, which is a good sign. We’re approaching land… and we’re looking forward to getting in”, they write. 

Amaury and Geoffrey have posted a stellar performance in this race since they are on the verge of securing the win on an ocean they have been crossing for the very first time. Both of them are members of the Cercle de la Voile des Flandres, a family club based on Lake Palluel in north-east France. Race Director François Seruzier pays tribute to this achievement: “They are sailing a remarkable course and have known when to put pedal to the metal at the right time,” he comments. “In this type of race, the winner is the one who makes the fewest mistakes and the leading boats have continued to push hard.” In fact, it was shortly after Madeira, some 10 days ago, that Amaury and Geoffrey took control of the fleet and have continued to consolidate their lead to over 30 miles today, which equates to a whole train carriage on an oceanic scale. The duo in the second spot, Gerard Quenot and Bertrand Daniels are expected in on Sunday (local time), which is around 6 hours later. The sailors from La Rochelle on France’s Atlantic coast also look set to reap the rewards of their fantastic performance since they’re on track to secure victory in corrected time. 

Astern of the two leading boats, there is likely to be a swift succession of finishers in the Marina de l’Etang Z’Abricots, near Fort-de-France. Indeed, Sunday is shaping up to be rather hectic since 27 boats are expected to finish in less than 48 hours, which is more than half the fleet. The first solo sailor, Ludovic Gérard, is due to make landfall on Sunday night through into Monday. However, the winner in corrected time in this category may well be Régis Vian, who could even win the overall ranking, ahead of the duos.

For now, with all the fleet still at sea, everyone is savouring each and every moment despite the fatigue and energy expended slaloming between the squalls and the calm conditions that have coloured this 3,800-mile oceanic race. Happiness reigns as evidenced by the latest news from aboard Even Job: “All’s well aboard Shom/Epilepsie France deep in the south. There have been a few lively nights of late with a series of squalls. The NKE instrumentation has lost the plot, the GRIB files are a bit long to download and the routing is a headache… but other than that the boat’s doing well and me too. The only thing is that I haven’t brought enough sweets and cold sausage… Okay, back to it as I try to catch up with my mates from the north.”

These are also the last few miles for the fleet to appreciate simply being where they are, right here, right now. Aboard Sleep Sailing Lab, “we are eager to get from one side to the other, but we’re not keen for it to end and not keen for this wonderful sea passage to become but a memory.” This sentiment is echoed by Eric Bastard and Alexandre Castelnau on Ishsha – l’Arche la Belle Porte in a message received yesterday: “It’s important to acknowledge the fact that the sailing conditions are absolutely exceptional. Imagine a backdrop of big waves, wide enough apart for us to enjoy some epic surfing, with between 15 and 25 knots of breeze, glorious sunshine (between the squalls) and a boat slipping along on her rail for hours on end. We’re also enjoying some wonderful starry nights meditating whilst slouched on a beanbag. This is the ambiance, free of the technicalities of everyday life, that we’ve been navigating for the past 2/3 days.”

Evidently, making the finish line will bring a sense of deliverance, wrapped up in the joy and emotion of hooking back up with loved ones after 3 weeks of racing. By the end of the race, every one of them will have changed. Whether it’s their first time or a confirmation of past experience, everyone will be ‘different’ upon crossing the line. That too is what makes a transatlantic so unique and full-on.


+ d’actualités

  • — 13. 05. 2024

    La seconde édition de la Cap-Martinique s’achève aujourd’hui avec l’arrivée de Marine et Sébastien Péjoan, 51ème et dernier concurrent de cette seconde édition. Thibaut Derville et Jean-Philippe Cau, co-organisateurs [...]