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#NSVICTORYLIST: VENDÉE ARCTIQUE

Familiar Faces Crowd the Podium After 1200 NM Cold Weather Course

Dalin, Beyou, Ruyant. By now, these names are likely familiar to you, and if not, don’t fret; North Sails will help get you up to speed. The top three boats completed the 1200 nm Vendée Arctique course a short four days after they first departed on June 12th. Dalin’s Apivia was first to finish, a trend that’s becoming a habit for the solo skipper. If you remember, Dalin was also the first boat to complete the grueling 2020-21 Vendee Globe and then followed it up with a first-place finish in the 2021 Rolex Fastnet Race. Charal’s Jérémie Beyou and LinkedOut’s Thomas Ruyant closely followed Dalin, with the top three Vendée Arctique finishers arriving into Les Sable d’ Olonne within seven hours of each other.

The Vendée Arctique is the first of five qualifying races for the 2024 Vendée Globe. The planned course is a demanding loop course that takes competitors on an unprecedented sailing adventure into an arctic environment. The skippers set off single-handed and non-stop towards the Arctic Circle, expected to sail around Iceland and navigate through the weather systems in the rough seas of the far north before returning to the race’s home port in France.  

But the weather conditions proved more challenging than expected for the 2022 edition. Race officials determined a  strong low-pressure system in the  North Atlantic near Iceland was churning to be more dangerous than first forecasted. As a result, the race was shortened and the finish moved to the Iceland Gate – to the east of Iceland. 

 

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Of the 25 skippers participating in the 2022 race, 16 are Vendée Globe veterans, and they’ve chosen North Sails to help them deliver the results they and their sponsors expect. The North Sails team knows that sailors have a choice among sailmakers. Our market share within the IMOCA class is a result of the best people paired with the best product and a competitive spirit that never quits.

“Innovation and going beyond is the North Sails DNA,” remarked Gautier Segrent, Head of North Sails France. “Our presence in the IMOCA class is because of years of intensive development that translates into three main elements; our investment in the creation of innovative products such as 3Di and Helix Structured Luff; our strong involvement and North Design Suite software available to the design teams from the very first drafts; and finally, our hands-on support for custom projects to best meet the expectations of the teams.”

A longtime collaborator with the individual teams, North Sails stepped up their support and signed on as an official supplier for the 2022 Vendée Arctique. North Sails France Managing Director Philippe Touet commented: “The North Sails involvement as an official supplier of the Vendée Arctique is closely linked to our relationship with the racers of the Vendée Arctique and the Vendée Globe; the two major offshore races organized by the Vendée SAEM. These events are both the playground and a testing ground for North Sails. So partnering with the Vendée SAEM in the second edition of this race was an obvious choice.”

The next edition of the Vendée Globe commences in November 2024. These next two years will see sailors putting their boats through the paces and testing their equipment to its limits. Their onboard experiences will provide critical feedback for the North Sails design team to continually tweak and optimize the IMOCA sail inventories. They often say you win races before you even reach the start line, and with the first event completed, the race is on.

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