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Solitaire Afflelou Le Figaro

Last leg for Duthil • The race for Desjoyeaux

Third win in the Solitaire for Mich’Desj "The Professor"

mardi 21 août 2007Information Solitaire du Figaro

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Frédéric Duthil wins in Les Sables d’Olonne and Michel Desjoyeaux (Foncia) overall winner of the 38th edition of La Solitaire Afflelou Le Figaro race Michel Desjoyeaux (Foncia) wins La Solitiare Afflelou Le Figaro race, one of the toughest single-handed sailing events in the French Figaro racing circuit. The third place finish in Les Sables d’Olonne, 41 minutes and 55 seconds behind Fréderic Duthil (Distinxion) and Gérald Veniard (Scutum) respectively, was enough to secure him the overall time lead to clinch the title of winner. Three third places and one win on the second leg produced a sufficient gap with total time deficits to win the race overall.

The overall top three spots, subject to final jury decision, go to Michel Desjoyeaux (Foncia), Frédéric Duthil (Distinxion) and Corentin Douguet (E.Leclerc/Bouygues Telecom).

Michel Desjoyeaux makes the Figaro history books on his 10th participation, joining Jean Le Cam and Philippe Poupon as three time winners of the event. “Mich’Desj” covered the four races between Caen, Crosshaven, Brest Brest #brest , La Coruña and Les Sables d’Olonne, making up a total 1,659 miles in 247 hours, 20 minutes and 47 seconds.

Desjoyeaux adds yet another feather in his cap. Michel has dominated single-handed sailing for more than 15 years : winner of the Vendee Globe Vendee Globe #VG2020 in 2000/2001, winner of the English Transat, winner of the Route du Rhum Route du Rhum #RouteDuRhum , solo on monohulls, solo on multi hulls and now three time winner of La Solitaire. Everything has been won, so what next, another Vendee Globe Vendee Globe #VG2020 in 2008 ! Fréderic Duthil wins the fourth and final leg between La Coruña and Les Sables d’Olonne. The skipper of Distinxion, with raised arms and a huge grin, crossed the finish line at 02h20m10s this morning to win the 4th conclusive leg of La Solitaire, covering the 340 mile course in 1 day 11 hours, 20 minutes and 10 seconds at 9.62 knots of average boat speed.

Duthil won the Prologue race, the first leg to Ireland, came second on the next leg (finishing 50 seconds behind Michel Desjoyeaux in Brest Brest #brest ) and came 8th on the 3rd leg (2 hours and 9 minutes behind Corentin Douguet). This is the fourth time the former windsurf Windsurf #Windsurf champion competes in La Solitaire and it is his best performance to date.

Just before the start on Sunday morning in la Coruña, Duthil declared, “This is my kind of race ! It is going to be wet but fun…it will be short, a sprint…well more like a marathon after 30 hours ! I am happy about the conditions we are going to get ; it is the kind that I go pretty fast on. So that is a good sign. I am not looking at the overall rankings anymore. My objective is to win the leg and forget about anything that has happened up until now.” This could not have been more of a premonition.

“You see my friends, I said that this would be a race for surfers. I really dug deep to win this one. We fought like dogs and dogs and had some huge average speeds. There was 35 to 40 knots constantly with gusts of up to 47 knots. It is mad, I did not think I was in the lead, I thought that it was Mich” exclaimed the skipper upon crossing the finish line.

Frédéric Duthil : I did not realise I was leading

Second leg win for Frédéric Duthil on La Solitaire this year ! First words from the leg winner upon arriving on the pontoons :

Fred, was this a tough one to win ?
- Huge. It is so nice to finish as this has been really, really tough. You can’t imagine when you are not on the boat just how tough it was. You just got huge waves in your face. The last two hours I could barely carry on, we kept calling each other over the VHF to say, come on it’s not far to go. We were all below deck with the autopilot on and no one wanted to drive the boat, we had had our fill !”

Where you surprised ?
- Up to an hour before I finished I did not know that I was in the lead ! I was sure that Michel Desjoyeaux was ahead and I thought that maybe I was third or fourth…It is incredible that I am here when you think that I managed to get the spinnaker under the boat in a squall and had lots of trouble trying to pull it out the water. I could not believe it when I announced I was coming to the finish line. I really thought others had already announced themselves. I am really happy, it’s great ! I passed Gérald (Veniard) over the last 3 or 4 miles. I did not have time to get used to this feeling, I am so happy ! Winning two legs on La Solitaire Afflelou Le Figaro is a dream come true…

You had some really tough conditions at sea…
- When the depression came in this morning it really blew. I had up to 47 knots and then it get’s worrying ! We had to fight it out like dogs. I had said that this would be a fast leg, on paper this leg was like windsurfers leg, but it was unexpectedly tough. And if I end up in one of the top three spots, well that would be just great !

What do you think of Michel Desjoyeaux’s overall win on the race ?
- When I started sailing he had already won his first Solitaire. What make a great champion is having the ability to continually question oneself. He knows how to do that and I hope that I will have the same motivation he has after having done so much. Michel really merits his victory. He sailed perfectly.

Are you not keen to become a professional sailor ?
- Not for now. All year I work in an insurance company. I have found a balance like that and it suits me well even though sailing has been my passion ever since I was a child. When I think about it, I started sailing solo four years agoand remember how on the last leg I packed away the spinnaker because the wind was too strong. I have made some progress since then, even though there is still lots more to learn. What is the first thing you want to do ? I am going to try and savour this will all my family and friends who have come and even more so as it is my girlfriends birthday today !

Ordre d’arrivée aux Sables d’Olonne
- 1 7 Duthil Frédéric Distinxion arrivé le 21/08/2007 à 2H20
- 2 4 Veniard Gérald Scutum arrivé le 21/08/2007 à 2H55
- 3 45 Desjoyeaux Michel Foncia arrivé le 21/08/2007 à 3H01
- 4 68 Berenger Nicolas KONE Ascenseurs arrivé le 21/08/2007 à 3H41
- 5 2 Drouglazet Eric Luisina arrivé le 21/08/2007 à 3H42
- 6 24 Le Gal Franck Lenze arrivé le 21/08/2007 à 3H47
- 7 6 Morvan Gildas Cercle Vert arrivé le 21/08/2007 à 3H53
- 8 10 Douguet Corentin E. Leclerc / Bouygues Telecom arrivé le 21/08/2007 à 3H56
- 9 70 Lepesqueux Marc Rapid’ Flore - Caen-La-Mer arrivé le 21/08/2007 à 4H03
- 10 80 Treussart Ronan Groupe Celeos arrivé le 21/08/2007 à 4H12

Classement Général de la Solitaire Afflelou Le Figaro 2007 (avant jury)
- 1. Michel Desjoyeaux (Foncia) en 247 heures 20 minutes 47 secondes
- 2. Frédéric Duthil (Distinxion) à 26’38’’
- 3. Corentin Douguet (E.Leclerc /Bouygues Telecom) à 1h03’50’’
- 4. Nicolas Troussel (Financo) à 01h41’26’’
- 5. Gildas Mahé (Le Comptoir Immobilier) à 2h14’23’’
- 6. Eric Drouglazet (Luisina) à 2h39’05’’
- 7. Gérald Véniard (Scutum) à 3h16’53’’
- 8. Gildas Morvan (Cercle Vert) à 3h19’48’’
- 9. Thomas Rouxel (Défi Mousquetaires) à 3h29’34’’
- 14*. Nicolas Lunven (BOSTIK) à 05h11’04’’ (1er bizuth)

Dans la même rubrique

Solitaire Afflelou Le Figaro • 3rd Leg : Corentin Douguet victorious in La Coruña

Solitaire Afflelou Le Figaro • 2nd leg : Sixth leg win for Professor Desjoyeaux in Brest

Solitaire Afflelou Le Figaro : Fred Duthil wins leg 1 in Crosshaven

Solitaire Afflelou le Figaro : Overview and final ranking of the race

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