After a few days’ break in mid-August, Giancarlo Pedote got back down to work last week. Accompanied by Anthony Marchand, his co-skipper for the next edition of the Transat Jacques Vabre, the Italian sailor started off with a complete check-up of his steed, which somewhat inevitably was really worked hard during the Rolex Fastnet Race, followed by a period of sailing, including one 24-hour inshore session. “The aim was to validate the new autopilot, as well as get back into the swing of things. We tested different sail configurations, precisely outlined the fast angles and went through the manœuvres… all of which formed part of the training programme to prepare for the fast approaching Coffee Route race”, explained Giancarlo, who will first be lining up for the Tour de Bretagne à la Voile – the fifth and final event that counts towards the French Elite Offshore Racing Championship 2019 – later this week. “Anthony suggested that I race with him on the Groupe Royer – Secours Populaire and I jumped at the chance. The standard on the Figaro Bénéteau circuit is very high and very uniform. It’ll be the perfect opportunity for the pair of us to continue working on our automatic reflexes and refine the way we work in double-handed format with a view to the transatlantic passage. It’s clearly an experience which will continue to improve our pair bonding”, said the delighted skipper of the 60-foot IMOCA in the colours of Prysmian Group, who will be in Saint-Quay-Portrieux this Friday for the race prologue, before the first leg kicks off the following day.