Route du Rhum : Erwan Le Roux wins the Multi 50 Class
jeudi 13 novembre 2014 –
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The solo skipper completed the 3,542 miles theoretical course in 11 days 5 hours 13 minutes and 55 seconds at an average speed of 13.16kts. In terms of actual miles on the water, Le Roux sailed 4,071miles for an average speed of 15.12knots. Le Roux sets a new course record, beating the 2006 course record of his former co-skipper Franck-Yves Escoffier by 12 hours and 15 minutes.
Erwan Le Roux enjoyed a great duel with his nearest adversary Lalou Roucayrol who finished runner-up in the last edition in 2010. Although they were close for most of the first half of the race, Erwan Le Roux finished with an advance of over 100 miles.
He completes a rare Transatlantic double, adding solo success in this La Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe to double-handed victory one year ago when he triumphed in the Transat Jacques Vabre with Yann Elies into Itajai, Brazil. On his way to this keynote victory Erwan Le Roux has shown a solid mastery of all the vital variables required to win, meteorology, strategy, sleep, manouvres, strength and stress management.
After finishing 6th in the 2010 edition of this race, this is Le Roux’s biggest solo success.
Le Roux is as talented as he is pugnacious and determined. He started from Saint-Malo determined to add to last year’s success. The Breton skipper from Auray has now won most of the major events since he purchased the boat in 2011. Built in 2009 as Crepes Whaou 3 to the VPLP design, Le Roux actually won the 2009 Transat Jacques Vabre on the boat when it was new, as co-skipper to owner-skipper Franck-Yves Escoffier.
Le Roux, 40, has grown in experience and stature in recent years. He served his time in the ORMA class at the shoulders of Marc Guillemot, Loïc Peyron, Thierry Dupré, Daniel Souben, and in the Multi 50 along with Franck-Yves Escoffier. He also had earlier success in monohulls previously, twice winning the Tour de France a la Voile, also racing successfully in Classe40 and the Mini 650.
He fought a tough, close game, head-to-head off the tip of Brittany with Yves Le Blevec (Actual) and Lalou Roucayrol (Arkema-Region Aquitaine). Loic Fequet (Maitre Jacques) was very quickly eliminated from the action after damaging a float on the first night.
The first part of Biscay was a classic chess board with Roucayrol hunting offshore out in the west. Yves Le Blevec lead early on, on Actual. He fell away after having to make a double pit-stop to repair his wind instruments. The early profit, being closer to the rhumb line was to Roucayrol. Le Roux went inside the TSS at Finisterre and after duelling since Finisterre with Roucayrol, he took the lead on the night of 6th November and has never been challenges.
Lalou Roucayrol’s newer 2013 launch Neyhousser/Verdier/Muyl design is faster downwind and the battle between the two went on for nearly 2000 miles until Erwan Le Roux eases progressively further ahead, opening up to 100 miles in the fina 48 hours to record a well earned victory into Guadeloupe.
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