Photos: Alexis Courcoux

Yann Elies fights back

As Artemis Offshore Academy sailor Sam Matson hangs on to the rookie lead at the end of La Solitaire's leg 2

Wednesday June 18th 2014, Author: James Boyd, Location: France

After dismasting on leg 1, Solitaire du Figaro defending champion Yann Elies (Groupe Queguiner) was first to cross the line in Roscoff to win leg two and his ninth Solitaire leg.

This represents an impressive comeback for the sailor who is hoping to enter the history book by becoming the first Figaro sailor to win the Solitaire three times in a row.

Elies dominated leg two and wasn't out of the top two since the fleet left Land's End, 440nm from Roscoff. He had a jostle with Gildas Morvan (Cercle Vert) as they raced across the Irish Sea, but after Fastnet Rock he pulled away from the other 36 solo sailors to cross the line almost 7nm ahead.

Elies commented: “I was inspired all the time on the first night, and from the Isles of Scilly I widened the gap. I was at one with the boat and what would happen. I was no longer competition for the others, it may be easier when you are no longer part of the race. The dismasting was difficult mentally but this puts the record straight. My new goal is to win stages. My strength is mental... I heard a little squeak in my mast when there was a little sea after the Isles of Scilly, I'm a little traumatised, I think that'll look all the time on the Solitaire. This is the first time I lost a mast like that, I thought that it does not dismasted Figaro. I look back at Wolf Rock, I have not seen, it is hidden, it was a little ashamed ... I often need to fall below before bouncing. It was hard to take after I'm never as good at the foot of the wall. I am not surprised, I started telling myself that I would win, I thought."

Sadly following his dismasting Elies is still only in 35th position overall with a 12 hour 16 minute deficit on the race leader. Given that Elies spanked the fleet on leg 2 and only finished

The battle for 2nd, 3rd and 4th place was closely fought. Corentin Horeau (Bretagne - Credit Mutuel Performance) managed to hold off Roscoff's own Jeremie Beyou (Maitre Coq) and Fabien Delahaye (Skipper Macif 2012), to cross the line 59 minutes after Elies.

Corentin Horeau commented: "I am super happy. This is a nice gift to get to Roscoff for my partners. I am also happy for Yann. Happiness is in place and in the ranking; this is the first time that I stayed this long with the best in the leading group. The Fastnet, it was magic, it was a first for me! We did not have much time to watch it, because I had a gybe. The Isles of Scilly I had never done either."

Sebastien Simon (Bretagne - Credit Mutuel Espoir) was the first rookie to finish, arriving in Roscoff at 02:05:48BST in 12th place. The 24 year old from Concarneau was 54 minutes ahead of British sailor, Sam Matson (Artemis 21).

Matson arrived at 02:59 BST this morning, surfing into Roscoff under a moonlit sky to finish the second leg 18th overall and third Rookie. Having raced two of the four legs that make up the full 2014 mile Solitaire course, Sam maintains his overall Rookie lead by 18 minutes and 14 seconds and sits 14th overall on the Solitaire du Figaro leaderboard after two legs.

Positioned 31st on the second day of racing (Monday), by that evening Matson had pulled back 12 positions to 18th on the approach to the Scilly Isles. It was here that he entered into a Rookie podium grudge match with Artemis teammate Rich Mason (Artemis 77) and Gwenolé Gahinet (Safran-Guy Cotten).

With early front-runner Sébastien Simon having sailed away with the Leg 2 Rookie podium top spot, the race was on for second and third. Mason was the first skipper to drop behind, leaving Matson and Gahinet to battle it out to the end – Matson eventually finishing just one minute behind the young Frenchman after three days, five hours, 33 minutes and 51 seconds of racing.

Matson reported: “First British skipper home for a second time, leading Rookie overall and top 20 on the overall leader board – of course I’m happy, I’m chuffed. It was a great race.

“I think I paced myself quite well in this leg. There’s always the danger that when you’re at the back of the fleet like I was at the beginning of the race, you push too hard and then knacker yourself out for the rest of the race. I started at the back of the fleet after a poor windward leeward start in Plymouth Sound, but from there I slowly gained places and didn’t loose any – that’s a really nice feeling.

“I was pretty gutted to lose out to Gwenolé just coming into the finish line, but he made some good calls and I think he probably was working a bit harder that I was, not that I was taking it easy, but I didn’t see him leave the helm once on the final leg – he was just driving hard all the way home and for that he deserved his lead. Sébastien (Simon, Leg 2 Rookie winner) sailed a killer race from the off, as did Gwenolé sail a great race. They deserve first and second. It’s nice to know I’m competitive amongst the fleet.”

The next British skipper on the dock was Rich Mason in 21st position, seeing Rich sit 22nd on the overall leader board. Next into the harbor was a disappointed Sam Goodchild (Team Plymouth) in 24th, Jack Bouttell (GAC Pindar) in 27th, Nick Cherry (REDSHIFT) 28th, Rookie Alan Roberts (Artemis 23) 32nd, Henry Bomby (RED) in 35th and Ed Hill (Macmillan Cancer Support) 36th. See full results below or on the Solitaire du Figaro website.

As the sun rose over the Brittany Port, Gwenael Gbick (Made in Midi) made it across the finish line, the last of the Solitaire fleet almost 5.5 hours after Elies. At 535nm, Leg 2 was the longest of the 2014 edition of La Solitaire du Figaro - Eric Bompard Cachemire. Now the sailors have the longest stopover, four whole days to rest and recharge in Roscoff before Leg 3 starts on Sunday.

Results Leg 2


Pos Boat / Skipper Finished Time Av speed
1 GROUPE QUEGUINER - LEUCEMIE ESPOIR Yann Elies 18/06/2014 01:26 3d 3h 0m 1s 7.13
2 BRETAGNE CRÉDIT MUTUEL PERFORMANCE Corentin Horeau 18/06/2014 02:24 3d 3h 58m 23s 7.04
3 MAITRE COQ Jérémie Beyou 18/06/2014 02:25 3d 3h 59m 47s 7.04
4 SKIPPER MACIF 2012 Fabien Delahaye 18/06/2014 02:26 3d 4h 0m 19s 7.04
5 INTERFACE CONCEPT Gildas Mahé 18/06/2014 02:29 3d 4h 3m 12s 7.03
6 AGIR RECOUVREMENTAdrien Hardy 18/06/2014 02:36 3d 4h 10m 57s 7.02
7 GROUPE FIVAAlexis Loison 18/06/2014 02:37 3d 4h 11m 4s 7.02
8 NORMANDY ELITE TEAMCharlie Dalin 18/06/2014 02:37 3d 4h 11m 45s 7.02
9 CERCLE VERTGildas Morvan 18/06/2014 02:39 3d 4h 13m 17s 7.02
10 UN MAILLOT POUR LA VIECorentin Douguet 18/06/2014 02:49 3d 4h 23m 26s 7
11 GEDIMATThierry Chabagny 18/06/2014 02:50 3d 4h 24m 26s 7
12 BRETAGNE – CRÉDIT MUTUEL ESPOIRSébastien Simon * 18/06/2014 03:05 3d 4h 39m 48s 6.98
13 SMAPaul Meilhat 18/06/2014 03:10 3d 4h 44m 24s 6.97
14 OVIMPEX - SECOURS POPULAIREAnthony Marchand 18/06/2014 03:11 3d 4h 45m 53s 6.97
15 ARMOR LUX - LE COMPTOIR DE LA MERErwan Tabarly 18/06/2014 03:18 3d 4h 52m 30s 6.96
16 GUYOT EnvironnementVincent Biarnes 18/06/2014 03:38 3d 5h 12m 58s 6.93
17 SAFRAN - GUY COTTENGwenolé Gahinet * 18/06/2014 03:58 3d 5h 32m 59s 6.9
18 ARTEMIS 21Sam Matson * 18/06/2014 03:59 3d 5h 33m 51s 6.9
19 GENERALIAlain Gautier 18/06/2014 04:08 3d 5h 42m 56s 6.88
20 SKIPPER MACIF 2014Yoann Richomme 18/06/2014 04:20 3d 5h 54m 24s 6.87
21 ARTEMIS 77Rich Mason * 18/06/2014 04:22 3d 5h 56m 0s 6.86
22 SKIPPER HERAULTXavier Macaire 18/06/2014 04:42 3d 6h 16m 42s 6.83
23 FULL IRISH - Le Comptoir IrlandaisDavid Kenefick 18/06/2014 05:08 3d 6h 42m 5s 6.8
24 TEAM PLYMOUTHSam Goodchild 18/06/2014 05:09 3d 6h 43m 21s 6.8
25 IN EXTENSO experts comptablesNicolas Jossier 18/06/2014 05:13 3d 6h 47m 27s 6.79
26 DFDS SEAWAYSFrédéric Rivet 18/06/2014 05:23 3d 6h 57m 26s 6.78
27 GAC PindarJackson Bouttell 18/06/2014 05:24 3d 6h 58m 27s 6.77
28 REDSHIFTNick Cherry 18/06/2014 05:26 3d 7h 0m 44s 6.77
29 DARWIN - Les marins de la LuneClément Salzes * 18/06/2014 05:35 3d 7h 9m 53s 6.76
30 LA SOLIDARITÉ MUTUALISTEDamien Guillou 18/06/2014 05:38 3d 7h 12m 2s 6.76
31 GENERALI - HORIZON MIXITEIsabelle Joschke 18/06/2014 05:45 3d 7h 19m 30s 6.74
32 ARTEMIS 23Alan Roberts * 18/06/2014 05:58 3d 7h 32m 41s 6.73
33 GROUPE SNEFJean Paul Mouren 18/06/2014 05:59 3d 7h 33m 5s 6.73
34 PORT DE CAEN OUISTREHAMClaire Pruvot 18/06/2014 06:00 3d 7h 34m 24s 6.72
35 REDHenry Bomby 18/06/2014 06:04 3d 7h 38m 3s 6.72
37 MACMILLAN CANCER SUPPORTEdmund Hill 18/06/2014 06:11 3d 7h 45m 47s 6.71
37 MADE IN MIDIGwenael Gbick * 18/06/2014 06:54 3d 8h 28m 19s 6.65
abd REGION BASSE NORMANDIEJoan Ahrweiller Retirement    

Overall results after leg 2


Pos Boat / Skipper Leg 1 Leg 2 Total From 1st
1 SKIPPER MACIF 2012 Fabien Delahaye 3d 3h 1m 17s 3d 4h 0m 19s 6d 7h 1m 36s -
2 MAITRE COQ Jérémie Beyou 3d 3h 3m 32s 3d 3h 59m 47s 6d 7h 3m 19s 0h 01m 43s
3 GROUPE FIVAAlexis Loison 3d 2h 53m 50s 3d 4h 11m 4s 6d 7h 4m 54s 0h 03m 18s
4 BRETAGNE CRÉDIT MUTUEL PERFORMANCE Corentin Horeau 3d 3h 18m 26s 3d 3h 58m 23s 6d 7h 16m 49s 0h 15m 13s
5 NORMANDY ELITE TEAM Charlie Dalin 3d 3h 6m 6s 3d 4h 11m 45s 6d 7h 17m 51s 0h 16m 15s
6 CERCLE VERT Gildas Morvan 3d 3h 9m 34s 3d 4h 13m 17s 6d 7h 22m 51s 0h 21m 15s
7 AGIR RECOUVREMENT Adrien Hardy 3d 3h 19m 2s 3d 4h 10m 57s 6d 7h 29m 59s 0h 28m 23s
8 INTERFACE CONCEPT Gildas Mahé 3d 3h 31m 36s 3d 4h 3m 12s 6d 7h 34m 48s 0h 33m 12s
9 GEDIMAT Thierry Chabagny 3d 3h 16m 18s 3d 4h 24m 26s 6d 7h 40m 44s 0h 39m 08s
10 SMA Paul Meilhat 3d 3h 10m 26s 3d 4h 44m 24s 6d 7h 54m 50s 0h 53m 14s
11 ARMOR LUX - LE COMPTOIR DE LA MER Erwan Tabarly 3d 3h 8m 24s 3d 4h 52m 30s 6d 8h 0m 54s 0h 59m 18s
12 UN MAILLOT POUR LA VIE Corentin Douguet 3d 4h 17m 3s 3d 4h 23m 26s 6d 8h 40m 29s 1h 38m 53s
13 OVIMPEX - SECOURS POPULAIRE Anthony Marchand 3d 4h 12m 28s 3d 4h 45m 53s 6d 8h 58m 21s 1h 56m 45s
14 ARTEMIS 21 Sam Matson * 3d 3h 52m 39s 3d 5h 33m 51s 6d 9h 26m 30s 2h 24m 54s
15 GUYOT Environnement Vincent Biarnes 3d 4h 27m 47s 3d 5h 12m 58s 6d 9h 40m 45s 2h 39m 09s
16 SAFRAN - GUY COTTON Gwenolé Gahinet * 3d 4h 11m 45s 3d 5h 32m 59s 6d 9h 44m 44s 2h 43m 08s
17 BRETAGNE – CRÉDIT MUTUEL ESPOIR Sébastien Simon * 3d 5h 14m 8s 3d 4h 39m 48s 6d 9h 53m 56s 2h 52m 20s
18 GENERALI Alain Gautier 3d 4h 31m 25s 3d 5h 42m 56s 6d 10h 14m 21s 3h 12m 45s
19 SKIPPER HERAULT Xavier Macaire 3d 4h 12m 10s 3d 6h 16m 42s 6d 10h 28m 52s 3h 27m 16s
20 DFDS SEAWAYS Frédéric Rivet 3d 4h 21m 23s 3d 6h 57m 26s 6d 11h 18m 49s 4h 17m 13s
21 IN EXTENSO experts comptables Nicolas Jossier 3d 4h 34m 45s 3d 6h 47m 27s 6d 11h 22m 12s 4h 20m 36s
22 ARTEMIS 77 Rich Mason * 3d 5h 31m 33s 3d 5h 56m 0s 6d 11h 27m 33s 4h 25m 57s
23 SKIPPER MACIF 2014 Yoann Richomme 3d 5h 33m 29s 3d 5h 54m 24s 6d 11h 27m 53s 4h 26m 17s
24 GENERALI - HORIZON MIXITE Isabelle Joschke 3d 4h 18m 35s 3d 7h 19m 30s 6d 11h 38m 5s 4h 36m 29s
25 FULL IRISH - Le Comptoir Irlandais David Kenefick 3d 5h 31m 41s 3d 6h 42m 5s 6d 12h 13m 46s 5h 12m 10s
26 GAC Pindar Jackson Bouttell 3d 5h 16m 0s 3d 6h 58m 27s 6d 12h 14m 27s 5h 12m 51s
27 LA SOLIDARITÉ MUTUALISTE Damien Guillou 3d 5h 5m 18s 3d 7h 12m 2s 6d 12h 17m 20s 5h 15m 44s
28 TEAM PLYMOUTH Sam Goodchild 3d 5h 35m 28s 3d 6h 43m 21s 6d 12h 18m 49s 5h 17m 13s
29 RED Henry Bomby 3d 4h 43m 34s 3d 7h 38m 3s 6d 12h 21m 37s 5h 20m 01s
30 REDSHIFT Nick Cherry 3d 5h 41m 57s 3d 7h 0m 44s 6d 12h 42m 41s 5h 41m 05s
31 DARWIN - Les marins de la Lune Clément Salzes * 3d 5h 35m 7s 3d 7h 9m 53s 6d 12h 45m 0s 5h 43m 24s
32 ARTEMIS 23 Alan Roberts * 3d 5h 24m 10s 3d 7h 32m 41s 6d 12h 56m 51s 5h 55m 15s
33 PORT DE CAEN OUISTREHAM Claire Pruvot 3d 6h 1m 56s 3d 7h 34m 24s 6d 13h 36m 20s 6h 34m 44s
34 MADE IN MIDI Gwenael Gbick * 3d 5h 47m 38s 3d 8h 28m 19s 6d 14h 15m 57s 7h 14m 21s
35 GROUPE QUEGUINER - LEUCEMIE ESPOIR Yann Elies 3d 16h 17m 49s 3d 3h 0m 1s 6d 19h 17m 50s 12h 16m 14s
36 GROUPE SNEF Jean Paul Mouren 3d 12h 57m 49s 3d 7h 33m 5s 6d 20h 30m 54s 13h 29m 18s
37 MACMILLAN CANCER SUPPORT Edmund Hill 3d 14h 57m 49s 3d 7h 45m 47s 6d 22h 43m 36s 15h 42m 00s
38 REGION BASSE NORMANDIE B7Joan Ahrweiller 3d 12h 9m 53s   3d 12h 9m 53s -

Latest Comments

Add a comment - Members log in

Latest news!

Back to top
    Back to top