A mandatory passage for the vast majority of the fleet, the exit from the floating basin is still an emotion-packed moment for the locals and also for the Gitana Team. It’s an opportunity to greet the crowd and thank those in the corsair city for their welcome. For Sébastien Josse and the members of the racing stable depicted by its five arrows, it remains a tricky manœuvre despite the euphoria of the moment: “We need to be very precise as the lock gate is narrow and the boat is pretty wide,” explains David Boileau, the boat captain of the trimaran fitted out by Baron Benjamin de Rothschild.
Orchestrated by the Race Management of the Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe, each team has to scrupulously respect its order of passage. In this way, at 1450 hours on the dot, the Multi70 Edmond de Rothschild will leave Bassin Vauban in second position so as to make the lock together with three other Ultimes. “We’re going to move the boat with the help of two ribs as we leave the dock, then we’ll sit it out for a few minutes as we wait for the bridge to open and the entry into the lock. For this 10th edition of the Route du Rhum, the last nine winners, aboard another rib, will open our lock gate for us. Once all the boats are in the lock, the water level will drop to that of the sea level. It’s not a complicated manœuvre but we need to remain vigilant throughout this stage and carefully control the mooring up procedure,” explains David Boileau. Once we’ve reached sea level, the lock gates will open onto Dinard harbour, leaving the multihull to make her mooring for a last night prior to start day.
Mooring out in the harbour is a great classic of the Route du Rhum. The whole fleet of 91 boats not being able to leave the marina in a single tide, a section of the yachts will spend the night on the buoys near Dinard on the other side of the Rance.
Aboard, the Multi70 Edmond de Rothschild, David Boileau and Benoit Piquemal (on-board electronics and computer specialist) will be on watch: “Mooring in the outer harbour is an unusual situation for a multihull. On this occasion, the Multi70 Edmond de Rothschild will be on a trot mooring, which means supported by two buoys, attached fore and aft. The boats all being aligned on the same trot mooring, some will pull more than others. To check and adjust the moorings according to the wind and the tides, each boat will have one or two people aboard. David and I will take it in turns throughout the night,” explains Benoit Piquemal.
On Sunday morning, the two men will be joined by Sébastien Josse and his inner circle: Cyril Dardashti and Yann Le Govic completing the foursome and together they’ll make for the start zone. The starting gun will set the entire fleet on their way at exactly 1400 hours.