Coville Starts Solo Record Attempt

Published on November 6th, 2016

(November 6, 2016: Day 1) – Thomas Coville (FRA) and the 31m maxi trimaran SODEBO ULTIM started the attempt to break the solo round the world record from in Brest (France) today.

Coville’s team had reported a weather situation would offer a departure slot between Saturday and Sunday, November 5 and 6. SODEBO ULTIM ‘crossed the start line of the round the world solo record today at 14 hours 49 minutes and 52 seconds.

To beat the record that Francis Joyon, on the trimarin IDEC, set of 57 days 13 hours and 34 minutes, he will close the loop before Tuesday, January 3, 2017 at 04:22:57.

This morning at the Port du Château in Brest, the audience on the pontoon was impressed by the serene and determined mood of the skipper of Sodebo Ultim, who was happy with this start early in the season. For Coville, it is an asset.

Aged 48, Thomas Coville cast off around 8:30. The sailor, who has physically and psychologically trained for months, knows what to expect and he developed this multihull, 31 meters by 21 meters wide, with a single goal, to have the most efficient support to become the fastest solo around the world.

Starting today, the sailor should benefit from optimal weather conditions on the first part of the voyage that goes to Ecuador. After seven rounds, the competitor confided last night that he had never seen such an exceptional window for starting. The descent through the Bay of Biscay looks fast and straight, close to the Great Circle and especially without much maneuvering to achieve, always very engaging on these gigantic ships, moreover when you sail alone.

Sodebo Ultim should pass Cape Finisterre tomorrow night.

Interview with Thomas Coville before departure:
“It is an excellent window to go to Ecuador. Jean-Luc Nélias (router) told me the windows like this, there is a year or sometimes not at all. So if you ask me in addition to the good road, to be rigged with the CAC 40, Ligue 1, Champions League, the US elections and the Vendée Globe is going to be complicated!

“I had Armel Le Cléac’h and Vincent Riou on the phone, and they were not surprised to see me go too. I will be their weather station and help to address their path to find out what they might wind in the South Atlantic.

“It was 10 years ago, we thought we were crazy to go round the world multihull. Compared to previous attempts, I feel much more confident, more experienced and better equipped with Sodebo Ultim ‘. I have experience with this boat, which also has the soul of Geronimo, and has already done the Tour (with Olivier de Kersauson and his crew in 2004). We are pioneers; it opens pathways as climbers in the mountains.

“Arrive before 31 December? I would not leave today if I did not think I could do it. This record, it is part of my story. It is within my reach. I would like to spend the New Year with you all!”

The current record of 57d 13h 34m 6s, which starts and finishes between the island of Ushant and Lizard Point in southern England, was set by Francis Joyon (FRA) on the 29.8m trimaran in January 2008.

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Source: Team Sodebo

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