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Tour de France à la Voile

The 40 teams are getting ready to start fro Dunkerque

jeudi 27 juin 2002Information Tour Voile

The Tour de France à la Voile 2002 is about to start. The 40 Mumm 30’s are lining up in the marina of Dunkerque-Dunes de Flandres. The measurements have been done over the last few days. The crews are now sorting out the last details in order to be ready for Friday’s prologue. The prologue is a non point scoring race that gives a chance to the crews to tune up and meet the other competitors.

The first two point scoring inshore races will take place in the waters of Dunkerque-Dunes de Flandres on Saturday. Most of them are eager to start this four weeks regatta. Once again, the level of competition of this one-design event mixing inshore and offshore racing promises to be high and we should see some tight and fierce racing.

One of the specificity of the Tour de France à la Voile is to see professionals, amateurs and students lining up on the same start line and racing against each other.

With 40 entries, the 25th Tour de France à la Voile equals its 1988 record Record #sailingrecord . Among the many French entries are a few foreign teams. There are two British teams, a professional one, Panther Team GBR skippered by Rob Greenhalgh and an amateur team, Royal Thames, skippered by Owen Modral.

Both British skippers are looking forward to starting racing. "We’re pleased to be here. It’s an exciting event. I’m very impressed with the set up. I hope things will go right. We’re eager to start as we’ve been sitting around ashore for a few days and it’s getting tedious", comments Rob Greenhalgh. Panther Team GBR hopes to finish in the top five. In order to train they’ve participated in the European and the French national Mumm 30’s championship. "We know it’s going to be difficult as this event is very competitive. At the French national the fleet was very strong, far more than the British fleet. This is probably equal or even more competitive that the European and World championship", adds Panther Team GBR skipper.

Royal Thames are also ready to start racing. "We’re well on course. The boat is in the water. The sails have been measured. We’re ready to start", says Modral who sailed two weeks last year onboard Simon Shaw’s British University and is happy to be back. "It’s an excellent event. It’s the best boat to sail like that, the best event to do for racing and for good time". Royal Thames expectations are to try and win the amateur division and finish in the top ten. "We’d like to produce what we did last year. We’ve learned a lot form last year and we hope to improve through the Tour. Here are our aims but we’re quite realistic and know it won’t be easy. We can be good on our day but we might not have consistency. We don’t know how strong is the fleet this year, but we have an idea", adds Modral. For offshore races, Royal Thames will have the precious help of good navigators such as Larry Rosenfield. "France is a very offshore sailing nation. We’re learning so much about how to prepare and sail the boat offshore. We have got a fair idea of how to approach the 70 to 100-mile legs but we’ll be learning as we go the very long ones".

There are also some international teams such as Vincent Portugal’s Cassis-Maugio Carnon with Italian Mumm 30 World Champion Vasco Vascotto and Aussie Nick Moloney who is part of Ellen MacArthur’s Offshore Sailing Team. There is a team comprised of Aussies and Brits competing in the student division. Force EDC is skippered by Australia’s Simon Sutherland.

The two Swiss teams are back. Etienne David’s Ville de Genève Carrefour Prevention competing in the overall division and Lorenz Müller’s Bienne Voile in the amateur division.

The Belgians are also back onboard T Service Interim Brussels Hoofdstedelijk Gewest.

These foreign teams will have to face serious French contenders such as Mart Hiercelin onboard Kenzo, Pierre-Loïc Berthet’s Nantes-St-Nazaire and Jimmy Pahun’s Région Ile de France with Isabelle Autissier and Pascal Bidégrry, winner of the single handed race Solitaire du Figaro Solitaire du Figaro #LaSolitaire in 2000. "I have a nice team. They read extremely well. I hope they will do well. I tried to have a team of "Figaristes" (Firgaro sailors). Erwan Tabarly will be joining us in Dieppe. I wanted to have people who know well how to sail and stand well long offshore legs as this year’s course will be pretty tiring", comments Jimmy Pahun.

Once again, member of the France’s Olympic sailing team are participating such as 470 world champion Gildas Philippe, skippering Dieppe Seine Maritime, or 49ner sailors like Dimitri Deruelle onboard Marseille and Julien Farnarier and Marc Audineau onboard Ville d’Antibes-NEC.

List of competitors

Professional division
- France CASSIS - MAUGUIO CARNON Bernard Mallaret – Vincent Portugal – Vasco Vascotto
- France COTES D’ARMOR TOUTES VOILES DEHORS Vincent Biarnes
- France DEFI PARTAGE Thierry Bouchard – Maxime Paul
- France DIEPPE SEINE-MARITIME Gildas Philippe
- France KENZO Marc Thiercelin
- France MARSEILLE Dimitri Deruelle
- France NANTES SAINT-NAZAIRE Pierre-Loïc Berthet – Marc Guessard
- G-B PANTHER : TEAM GBR Rob Greenhalgh
- France REGION ILE DE FRANCE Jimmy Pahun -France THEOULE - MANDELIEU Sylvain Chtounder
- France VILLE D’ANTIBES - NEC Julien Farnarier
- Suisse VILLE DE GENEVE – CARREFOUR PREVENTION Etienne David
- France VITAMINE – HYERES - COYCH Nicolas Clément – Pierre-Laurent Garnero – Fabien Henry

Amateur division
- France ACCENTURE – TIBCO SOFTWARE Pierre-Yves Lambert
- France CODIAM ENSP dh Jean-Claude Nicoleau – Nicolas Loday
- France CSC - ESSEC Hervé Gautier
- France DEFI JEAN BART Luc Meurisse – Tanguy Blondel – Christophe Patou – Vincent Vandekerkhove – Olivier Gellez
- France DINARD LA PACHANGA Eric Basset
- France ILE DE LA REUNION - RFO Yann Dubois
- France NANTES SAINT-NAZAIRE AU FEMININ Christelle Philippe – Emilie Constant
- France PSA PEUGEOT CITROEN Eric Blouet – Pierre Bigot – Odilon Darodes G-B ROYAL THAMES Owen Modral
- Belgique T SERVICE INTERIM REGION DE BRUXELLES – CAPITALE BRUSSELS HOOFDSTEDELIJK GEWEST Jean-Marc Fobert – David Spruyt – Yannig Loyer
- Suisse TEAM BIENNE - VOILE Lorenz Mueller
- France TEPACAP Sophie Gilibert – Richard Quantin
- France VILLE DE BANDOL CASINO DE BANDOL Christian Berhault – Laurent Boudal

Student division
- France BREST Brest #brest GRANDES ECOLES ENSIETA – ENST BRETAGNE Tanguy Mahé
- France CAP UNIVERSITE ST-QUENTIN-EN-YVELINES Jean-Marie Gout
- France CENTRALE PARIS - MEDECINS DU MONDE Ferdinand Rey
- France EDC Antoine Horellou
- France ENSAM - HEC Marc Emig
- France ESTUDINES.FR – PORT DE COMMERCE LA ROCHELLE Yann Dube – Rodolphe Jacq
- G-B FORCE EDC Simon Sutherland
- France GROUPE DASSAULT – X – ESCP - EAP Marc Lepesqueux
- France INSA Bruno Barbarin – Jean-François Quelen
- France JACQUES VABRE - ESC LE HAVRE Guillaume Got
- France PAPREC RECYCLAGE – NORMALE SUP CACHAN - ENSAE Sébastien Petithuguenin
- France PONTS-TELECOM – ESTACA – DEFI SEP Stéphane Venel
- France SCIENCES-PO MECENAT CHIRURGIE CARDIAQUE CIC Jean-René Guilloux
- France SECURITE ROUTIERE Yannick Bestaven – Boris Rohou



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