Record Setting Day for IDEC SPORT

Published on January 2nd, 2017

(January 2, 2016; Day 18, 23:30 FR) – Francis Joyon (FRA) and his five crew on the 31.5m VPLP-designed trimaran IDEC SPORT had a record setting day in their bid win the Jules Verne Trophy for fastest outright time around the world.

With their latest 24 hour run of 754 nm, the team has increased their lead to 529.7 nm (+182.4 nm) ahead of the current time set in January 2012 by Loïck Peyron and his crew on the 40 VPLP-designed trimaran Banque Populaire V of 45 days, 13 hours, 42 minutes and 53 seconds.

Their fast pace in the Indian Ocean has already allowed them to claim two preliminary records.

When the IDEC SPORT maxi-trimaran crossed the longitude of Cape Leeuwin today at 1518hrs UTC, their time of 17 days, 6 hours and 59 minutes after leaving Ushant was almost 16 hours and 57 minutes ahead of the reference time set by Loïck Peyron and his men on Banque Populaire V (17 days, 23 hours and 56 minutes) having sailed at an average speed above 28 knots out on the water.

A bigger feat was their crossing of the Indian Ocean between the Cape of Good Hope and Cape Leeuwin as their reference time of 4 days, 9 hours and 37 minutes is one day, 1 hour and 46 minutes ahead of the reference time set by Francis Joyon and his men in 2015 (5 days, 11 hours and 23 minutes) and one day, 12 hours and 31 minutes ahead of the title-holder Banque Populaire V (6 days and 8 minutes). The Indian Ocean was crossed at an incredible average speed of 35.08 knots (3705 miles).

By crossing the longitude of Cape Leeuwin in SW Australia this afternoon after entering the Indian Ocean on Thursday 29th December, the IDEC SPORT maxi-trimaran has just achieved one of the most amazing feats in the history of the Jules Verne Trophy. The team has sailed seven whole days at more than 800 miles a day with peaks from 28th to 31st in December respectively of 876, 871 and 869 miles, meaning an average speed of more than 36 knots.

After setting out from Ushant on December 16, taking advantage of what he called an average weather opportunity, Joyon and his incredible gang had to work hard in an Atlantic that was far from cooperative and fell some 755 miles behind the pace set by the title-holder, the maxi-trimaran Banque Populaire V skippered by Loïck Peyron with a crew of thirteen.

Diving down into the Forties, they hopped onto the front of a low on which they are still sailing a long way off Cape Leeuwin. There have been supersonic speeds throughout this crossing and all carried out on a straight line, shattering all the records today. Crossing the longitude of Cape Leeuwin in 17 days, 6 hours and 59 minutes, Joyon and his gang have improved on Peyron’s performance by sixteen hours. Groupama 3, which became IDEC SPORT, took 21 days and 14 hours to sail this distance in 2010.

It is true that Ushant is still a long way ahead and they will only be at the halfway point at the end of the week. But IDEC SPORT has not yet finished sailing on her straight trajectory at speed and hopes to continue to do this until they approach the Pacific.

“Conditions were right to allow us to sail quickly and without too much work,” explained Joyon. “We are concentrating on our job at the helm, staying there for no longer than half an hour and paying attention to the trimming. Always on the port tack, manoeuvres involved taking in or shaking out a reef and modifying the headsail. That was the case last night, when we ran into an area of squalls that were not forecast. The talent of the helmsmen is working wonders on these calm seas.”

“We are entering a transition zone today between the low that has been behind us for several days and a new low forming ahead of us,” added Bernard Stamm. “As long as these two systems don’t merge, wind conditions should remain unstable.”

IDEC SPORT is continuing at high speed with wind on the beam from the north, which can be tricky when the giant trimaran lifts up her windward float. “More than ever, as we are beginning to feel tired, we need to be cautious at the helm and at the sheets,” insisted Captain Joyon.

The men on IDEC SPORT, far from celebrating their achievement, are looking ahead to what is coming up and aim to continue on this winning tack. “We thought it would take us longer to catch Banque Populaire V,” declared a surprised Joyon, “in the Pacific, where Loïck had a few difficult days. We are pleased. The Pacific is looking good for us, and we are determined to make the most of that.”

Status as of 22:00 FR
Distance to Finish: 12484.8 nm
24 Hour Distance: 754 nm
24 Hour Speed Average: 31.4 knots
Ahead/Behind: +529.7 nm


Note: The 24 hour speed record of 908.2 nm (37.84 knot average) was set in 2009 by Banque Populaire 5, a 131-foot trimaran skippered by Pascal Bidegorry (FRA).

The Jules Verne Trophy is a prize for the fastest circumnavigation of the world by any type of yacht with no restrictions on the size of the crew, starting and finishing between the Le Créac’h Lighthouse off the tip of Brittany and the Lizard Point in Cornwall.

After starting on November 16, Francis Joyon (FRA) and his five crew on the 31.5m VPLP-designed trimaran IDEC SPORT need to finish by 22:00:53 UTC on Monday January 30 to beat the current record set January 2012 by Loïck Peyron and his crew on the 40 VPLP-designed trimaran Banque Populaire V of 45 days, 13 hours, 42 minutes and 53 seconds.

Francis Joyon, Gwenole Gahinet, Clement Surtel, Bernard Stamm, Alex Pella, Sebastien Audigane during the press conference of IDEC Sport prior to their 2nd attempt for the Jules Verne Trophy, crew circumnavigation non stop, on December 13th, 2016 in Paris - Photo Jean-Louis Carli / DPPI / IDEC

Francis Joyon (fourth from left) and his crew comprising Clément Surtel, Alex Pella, Bernard Stamm, Gwénolé Gahinet and Sébastien Audigane.

Jules Verne Trophy
Record to beat: 45 days, 13 hours, 42 minutes and 53 seconds set by Loïck Peyron and his crew of 13 in January 2012 on the trimaran Banque Populaire V (40 m)
Average speed to beat: 19.75 knots
Course: around the world via the three capes, Good Hope, Leeuwin, Horn.
Great circle distance: 21,600 miles
Start and finish line between Ushant (Créac’h Lighthouse and The Lizard (Cornwall).

IDEC SPORT trimaran
Trimaran with foils
Designers: VPLP
Previous names: Groupama 3, Banque Populaire VII
Initial launch: June 2006
Length: 31.50 m
Beam: 22.50 m
Displacement: 15 t
Draught: 5.70 m
Mast height: 33.50 m
Structure: carbon-nomex


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