Crossing the finishing line at 2018hrs on Wednesday 16th December after 10 days, 5 hours, 18 minutes and 17 seconds, Sébastien Josse has won the Transat St.Barth – Port-la-Forêt and qualified for the 2016 Vendée Globe. This win confirms Sébastien’s determination and reminds everyone that he will be one to watch from the start on 6th November 2016.
After dealing perfectly with the weather systems that he encountered throughout the 3400-mile race, Sébastien Josse has won this second edition raced between St.Barth and Port-la-Forêt in Brittany. The route taken by the most recent Gitana boat tells us a lot about the skills of this solo sailor, while the average speeds also prove that the skipper of the 60-foot IMOCA, Edmond de Rothschild has found the right way to set up and get the most out of his Verdier-VPLP designed boat, the only foiler setting out from St. Barth on 6th December.
Summary of Seb Josse’s declarations at the finish. “I must say I set off with the main aim of qualifying for the Vendée Globe and seeing how my boat behaves, rather than trying to get the best performance out of her. This race was a fantastic test for the boat and for me. We found exactly what we were looking for. Since her launch on 7th August, we have been racing against the clock. The Jacques Vabre wasn’t kind to us and it was important to set off again quickly to sail as many miles as possible and gain experience with this new boat. The boat is well built and very pleasant with the protective cover, under which we feel really safe. She is fast and in some points of sail, when the foils come into play, is really impressive. Sailing at 30 knots on a monohull isn’t the same as doing that on a multihull. It’s not as stressful.
We do wonder how we are going to slam down from the wave, but we don’t worry about flipping right over. One thing is certain. I’m a fan of the foils and I don’t need to think about them. I’ll be keeping them. My only regret is how the rest of the fleet suffered over the past few days with a special thought for Paul, who showed great determination. It was nice racing against him for the first few days.”