May 3, 2013

Francois Gabart @Eurocat 2013: Smooth Transition, Vendee to F18

If you want to have your event, project or brand promoted in the best way it is a must that you to contact a Pro photographer. All Images Pierrick Contin / Sail Innovation , Click for HQ
This guy is good. After travelling solo around the World on a 60 foot monohull, having such a performance in course racing on an F18 major event with conditions varying from 4 to 20 knots with two different crews is a sign of things to come. An F18 World Title is not an easy thing to achieve but Gabart may have a chance with Vandame to aim for the crown if he continue to train hard for Grossetto. Besson-Lagarrigue will be there too for sure as favorites.
Styles as always speeding hard, he just need a little more luck with boats! At LA he told me about a freaking mast breaking story a day before the event when he came to BA to race the T Worlds in 2006, then at Erquy 2010 the Press boat crash while leading, and last year a daggercase damage left him out of the race while having chances for a podium. He needs to visit some Shaman or a Druid back home!

Below report (& images) sent by Udin. Check the second picture, a perfect lineup of the 4 top crews at Carnac: Styles, Besson, Heemskerk & Gabart
Sent by Alex Udin-- A very promising start for the Team Sail Innovation
What a great start for the first race of the season with two boats on the podium at the Eurocat, Hugh Styles and Richard Mason who never sailed together before end second, François Gabart and Matthieu Vandame who also have their first try together finish third.

Alex Udin : “It is brilliant to have two Phantom on the podium, I am really impressed to see how consistent Francois is, knowing he only trained one hour on the boat before the race and sailed Tornado 10 years ago. We have still a lot of work to be competitive enough to catch to best team for the world’s, Billy and Jeremie were very consistent here, Mischa and Bastian were also very fast especially in the last day of breeze, they will for sure be some strong pretenders for the World’s...”

François Gabart (Skipper of 60’ MACIF) : “ I am glad of this 3rd place, I was very happy to race again on a small cat with such a great crew as Matthieu, I straight away felt very confident a fast with the boat. Unfortunately Matthieu injured his shoulder during the third day in the strong breeze, I have raced the last day with Louis Viat who did a great job too. “

Hugh Styles: “ It was great to be back racing the Phantom and also to be in Carnac. Richard and I improved through the regatta and really made excellent progress and had a really consistent last day. We're now looking forward to training and preparing for the F18 worlds in July - we will have improved again there so excited to see how we will finish ! “ .

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