At the end of a day full of action and suspense, the catamaran, Ladycat powered by Spindrift racing, helmed by Xavier Revil, won the 78th edition of the largest freshwater regatta in the world, on Lake Geneva in Switzerland. More than 520 yachts of all sizes and categories, representing eight nationalities, started this legendary 123km (76 mile) race from Geneva to Le Bouveret and back. After 8 hours and 31 minutes of sailing in capricious weather conditions, Ladycat crossed the finish line in first place ahead of Alinghi and Mobimo. The Spindrift team can add this victory at the Bol d'Or Mirabaud to those in 2010 and 2014, when Dona Bertarelli was at the helm.
In the top three all the way
This morning at 10:00, the 520 monohulls and multihulls lined up for the start of this edition of the Bol d'Or Mirabaud in a sunny Geneva. The catamaran, Ladycat, in the black and gold colours of Spindrift, had an excellent start and led the race into the middle of the lake. After 4 hours and 15 minutes of sailing, Ladycat rounded the first mark at Bouveret a few minutes behind Alinghi.
The rain then poured down all afternoon, but it did not to dampen the thrilling spectacle being played out on the water. The race back was particularly tough and tactical, keeping the teams and the spectators in suspense right until the finish line. Close to Evian, the two leading teams, Spindrift and Alinghi, were neck and neck with only 0.1 miles between them. Both teams began a series of tacks in search of the most favourable wind and, fter some good tactical decisions, the Spindrift team seized an opportunity close to the entrance to the Petit Lac, which took them to victory after 8 hours and 31 minutes of sailing. Spindrift’s victory in the Bol d'Or Mirabaud, means that the team maintains its position at the top of the 2016 D35 Trophy ranking.
Xavier Revil, helmsman on Ladycat, reviews the key moments of the race:
“We made a great start that put us to the front of the action, then on the return, we were second and on the attack, just behind Alinghi, when we managed to pull off a truly incredible move: our tactician, Erwan Israël, suggested making a “dummy gybe” - trying to convince them that we would gybe, but not actually doing it. They fell into the trap and gybed and we were able to reclaim the most favourable side of the water. It worked out and the wind picked up. There was a great battle on the water between the D35 and the other boats. The whole team did an amazing job in this race. We’ve really enjoyed sailing Ladycat. It’s a huge moment and it was great that Dona Bertarelli was able to be at the finish to congratulate us.”
A third victory in the Bol d'Or for the Spindrift team
With this victory on the Bol d'Or Mirabaud, Spindrift racing added its name for the 3rd time to the impressive list of winners of this legendary race.
Competing on the circuit since 2007, the D35, Ladycat, has repeatedly shone on this course, winning the race on two other occasions, in 2010 and 2014 when the team, helmed by Dona Bertarelli, covered the course in a record time of 5 hours and 38 minutes. Bertarelli was also the first woman to win the legendary race.
Dona Bertarelli reviews this great race and victory for the Spindrift team:
“Luck had nothing to do with winning this Bol d'Or Mirabaud. The team sailed very well and managed the tactics and execution really well from start to finish. A true match race developed between Alinghi and Ladycat, who both showed great fighting spirit and tenacity right to the end, with our black and gold catamaran ultimately victorious after a masterfully managing their hand. Since 2011, with Yann [Guichard], we’ve built and developed a strong and competitive team, which embodies our values and we’re as proud of this result as if we’d been on board. I won this race with an all-female crew in 2010, I won it four years later in the colours of Spindrift, and this year I can say that I feel the same happiness after all the work that’s been done. As a sailor, team leader, and on behalf of the whole of the Spindrift racing team, I’m very proud of winning this legendary race.”
D35 ranking Bol d’Or Mirabaud 2016
1: Ladycat powered by Spindrift racing
4: Team Tilt
8: Racing Django
9: Ylliam Comptoir Immobilier
10: Zen Too
D35 Trophy ranking after Bol d’Or Mirabaud competition
1: Ladycat 10 pts
2: Alinghi 19 pts
3: Team Tilt 21 pts
4: Swisscom 25 pts
5: Mobimo 28 pts
6: Realteam 33 pts
7: Okalys 33 pts
8: Racing Django 35 pts
9: Ylliam Comptoir Immobilier 35 pts
10: Zen Too 36 pts
The crew of Ladycat powered by Spindrift racing:
Xavier Revil, helmsman
Erwan Israël, tactician
Jacques Guichard, headsail trimmer
Malo Bessec, bowman
Benjamin Amiot, mid-bow
Fred Moreau, mainsail