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Solitaire du Figaro

Nicolas Troussel wins the 39th edition

Gildas Morvan 2nd • Fred Duthil 3rd • François Gabart 1st in the rookie rankings

Saturday 16 August 2008Information Solitaire du Figaro

All the versions of this article: [English] [français]

Nicolas Troussel finished 18th on the last leg of La Solitaire du Figaro Solitaire du Figaro #LaSolitaire , but the 6 hour lead he had over his closest rival was more than enough to clinch the overall win of the 39th edition of La Solitaire. Gildas Morvan (Cercle Vert) and Frédéric Duthil (Distinxion Automobile) take 2nd and 3rd places respectively. François Gabart (Espoir Région Bretagne) wins the 2008 Beneteau Rookie Ranking by finishing 17th overall for his first time participation on the race.

Nicolas Troussel owes this win to an exceptional race on the first leg from La Rochelle to Vigo. The battle to get ahead in the light conditions and reach the wind first allowed him to continually extend the lead, a lead in terms of time that his fellow 49 competitors would never break over the course of the three legs. Recognition for Troussel’s astounding success story is unanimous among the skippers. The ability to build such big gaps and to climb places from behind is astonishing. “Nico sailed really well on the first two legs. On the first, I was close to him when he managed to get away. I was tired and he still had the willpower and clear mindedness to try anything, to go and search and grab the opportunities. This does not come down to good luck, this comes down to pure talent.” Describes Frédéric Duthil. I have been sailing like this for some years now” explains Troussel, “I believe in myself and my strategy and not necessarily just intuition. I try and see the long-term situation. When it works out it is a bit like a spiral, and that is were I do well. I am also confident in my ability which has just grown over the years.” He continues.

Gildas Morvan (Cercle Vert) enjoys his best performance so far after 13 participations in La Solitaire and takes the 2nd place in the overall rankings. The 2nd spot in Aber Wrac’h assures him the place and “even though I came to win, I still feel I have had a great Solitaire. He confides, “It all came down to the first leg when Nicolas (Troussel) pretty much killed the race. He has sailed brilliantly. I have finished 3rd so many times so finishing 2nd it great…now I have to come back next year to win it!” concludes a grinning Gildas. Frédéric Duthil (Distinxion Automobiles) takes the third place and can be proud of two excellent years on La Solitaire. In 2007 he won two legs and came second to Michel Desjoyeaux and this year, the Olympic trained sailor has not once stepped down from a podium finish. “It is funny, Nicolas (Troussel) wins the first leg and overall, Gildas (Morvan) wins the second leg and is second overall and I win the third leg and am third overall. We have had to work hard but then what is really self-assuring is that I have been very regular and finished on the podium on all the legs. I think that I have become more of an all rounder and more consistent.” Concludes Duthil. Jeanne Grégoire (Banque Populaire), on her 7th participation finishes just behind Eric Tabarly (Athema) to take 5th place, her best to date. She equals the best female ranking when Clare Francis finished 5th overall in 1975. François Gabart. (Espoir Région Bretagne), the 25 year old competing for the first time, wins the overall rookie rankings and proves worthiness of being selected to train in one of France’s best established training camps, the Centre d’Entraînement de Port La Forêt. “I was expecting lots of things but then none of them where what I actually experienced. You have to do this race to understand it. I found out lots of things about myself, about what drives me to want to win, about what I am good at. I tried to keep going the whole way. The only little fright I had was on the second leg when I crossed paths with whale and we missed colliding by just a couple of centimetres. On the third leg I went hell for leather, it was a real sprint and even broke things on the boat. I thought I was going to enjoy it and I just loved it!” enthuses Gabart.

“We have had two legs where low pressure systems have meant we could not sail the planned courses, but then we just have to adapt” explains the race director, Jacques Caraës, “I am so happy now to see all the boats safely back and think that everyone is pleased now and when you see the level of these competitors you understand why this Solitaire has such a high standard”, continues Jacques. “It is no fluke that you see these very talented and experienced sailors on top of the podium. I am also truly surprised by the rookies, the first three are of extraordinary ability, François Gabart, Adrien Hardy and Isabelle Joschke, but then they are good sailors who train hard and perform well all year long.”

This brings a close to the 39th edition of La Solitaire du Figaro Solitaire du Figaro #LaSolitaire , we will have to wait for the 4th of December to find out where the race will go to celebrate the 40th year of Europe’s oldest solo offshore yacht race.

Final ranking

Le classement Général Le Figaro, résulte du cumul des temps de course de chaque bateau sur l’ensemble des étapes.

- 1 1 Troussel Nicolas Financo en 226h 32min 51s
- 2 4 Morvan Gildas Cercle Vert à 02h22’15’
- 3 10 Duthil Frédéric Distinxion Automobile à 03h34’38’
- 4 18 Tabarly Erwan Athema à 03h53’57’
- 5 40 Grégoire Jeanne Banque Populaire à 04h54’50’
- 6 97 Pratt Christopher DCNS 97 à 04h55’37’
- 7 68 Bérenger Nicolas KONE Ascenseurs à 05h03’54’
- 8 3 Mahé Gildas Le Comptoir Immobillier à 05h52’27’
- 9 31 Pellecuer Laurent Docteur Valnet aromathérapie à 05h52’46’
- 10 92 Chabagny Thierry SUZUKI Automobiles à 06h23’08’
- 11 7 Drouglazet Eric Luisina à 06h37’54’
- 12 70 Lepesqueux Marc Les Conquérants de Normandie/Caen la Mer à 08h00’00’
- 13 72 Biarnes Vincent Côtes d’Armor à 08h05’16’
- 14 22 Rivet Frédéric BUREAU-CENTER à 08h17’32’
- 15 74 Koch Antoine Sopra Group 1 à 08h28’29’
- 16 * 25 Gabart François Espoir Région Bretagne à 08h37’47’
- 17 50 Lunven Nicolas Foncia à 08h58’51’
- 18 60 Loison Alexis ALLMER INEO GDF SUEZ à 09h22’13’
- 19 6 Treussart Ronan Groupe Celeos à 09h46’46’
- 20 85 Belloir Aymeric CAP 56 à 09h56’52’
- 21 62 Attanasio Romain DCNS 62 à 10h21’51’
- 22 9 Tripon Armel Gedimat à 10h41’07’
- 23 2 Rouxel Thomas Défi Mousquetaires à 11h04’38’
- 24 * 32 Hardy Adrien AGIR Recouvrement à 11h49’32’
- 25 94 Veniard Gérald Macif à 11h56’27’
- 26 15 Nicol Jean-Pierre Gavottes à 12h24’06’
- 27 23 Le Miere Grégoire OTCex Group à 13h07’22’
- 28 13 Mouren Jean-Paul M@rseillEntreprises à 15h56’50’
- 29 11 Lebas Christophe LOLA à 15h59’29’
- 30 * 19 Joschke Isabelle Synergie à 16h33’47’
- 31 33 Monnet Jean-Charles Degrémont SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT à 17h17’10’
- 32 79 Péron Eric L’esprit d’équipe à 17h43’22’
- 33 48 Gouezigoux Laurent BOISTECH à 18h49’30’
- 34 26 Nagy Robert THEOLIA à 19h16’58’
- 35 16 Douguet Corentin E.Leclerc Mobile à 19h28’45’
- 36 * 64 Jossier Nicolas Esprit Voile 50 à 20h28’38’
- 37 14 Bos Christian Région Midi Pyrénées à 21h00’37’
- 38 47 Da Cruz Antonio-Pedro Baïko à 21h04’45’
- 39 42 D’Ali Pietro Mc Louis à 21h37’05’
- 40 69 Bouillard Didier MEDevent à 22h36’43’
- 41 * 52 Greenwood Andy Imtech à 23h03’59’
- 42 * 99 Szekely Malko Région Basse-Normandie à 23h48’52’
- 43 * 36 D’Hooghe Eric FMC Recyclage-Thompson Recyclage à 25h22’45’
- 44 8 Wardley Liz Sojasun à 25h57’58’
- 45 * 44 Gendron Grégory Sopra Group 2 à 33h20’23’
- 46 5 Le Gal Franck Lenze à 35h13’56’
- 47 * 37 Riou Elodie KPMG à 35h41’50’
- 48 * 57 Amedeo Fabrice à 37h24’54’
- 49 * 21 Bard Philippe à 38h31’43’
- 50 43 Le Meitour Jean-Philippe La voix de l’enfant à 47h32’23’

* Bizuth (première participation)

NDR : Nicolas Troussel et d’autres skippers ont écoppé d’une pénalité de 2 heures pour avoir enfreint des règles de navigations lors de la 3e étape.

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