Man – boat: a solid pairing
“The man-boat pairing is the most important factor when it comes to performance”, such is the sentiment often voiced by Francis Joyon, holder of multiple sailing records, including that of the crewed round the world in a time of just over 40 days. It’s an opinion fully supported by Giancarlo Pedote: “I feel very much at one with my boat. We form a great pairing. In fact, I believe I’ve felt a sense of complicity with all the boats I’ve sailed on. With my Mini 6.50, the bond was also very strong. I piloted her with my mind and she satisfied my desires. Here, it’s obviously a bit different as 60 footers are complicated machines. You have to constantly anticipate what’s going to happen, but I love their technical aspects. I find it fascinating to understand how they work, the ways in which you can repair them… it’s all part and parcel of my job”, noted the skipper of Prysmian Group, who has spent a great deal of time mulling over possible optimisations for his steed, especially in the Deep South. “I’ve designed lots of hulls and I’ve put a lot of thought into the ergonomics of the coachroof and so on. I’ve really had fun considering solutions for performing even better”, continued the Florentine, who is constantly striving to progress. “On IMOCAs, you never stop discovering new things. These boats are complex and their tweaking knows no bounds. You can try flatter sails, different triangulation points… There are never any end points, only new starting points and that’s exactly why it’s so thrilling”, assures Giancarlo, who is currently playing around with the Azores High. “Right now we have an E’ly wind, but it will gradually continue to veer till it shifts round to the south, then the south-west with the low-pressure systems which will propel us towards the Bay of Biscay”, explained the sailor, who might well take advantage of the situation to reduce his deficit in relation to the leaders thanks to his position further to the east. Indeed, such positioning will enable him to cut the corner and hence shorten the distance to sail to Les Sables d’Olonne.