Monday, April 19, 2021
Home Events Regatta Back to land, next is Cousin the 23rd skipper on this Vendée...

Back to land, next is Cousin the 23rd skipper on this Vendée Globe

Manuel Cousin, the 52 year French skipper who retired from his role as an executive with the Toyota motor group to pursue a career ocean racing will bring his Imoca Groupe SÉTIN across the finish line of the Vendée Globe tomorrow morning – estimated for between 0500hrs and 1000hrs UTC – and return back into Les Sables d’Olonne the town where he has lived for 12 years.

Cousin will be the 23rd skipper on this 9th Vendée Globe and it will be an arrival that promises to be quite emotional as he has struggled regularly with serious technical problems with his rudder and keel which have threatened to force a premature end to his race. He cracked his rudder in the Indian Ocean and snapped a keel ram in the north Atlantic and has largely nursed his boat to the finish line since then.  But even though he has had to still deal with a couple of big low pressure systems, again sailing today in 35 plus knots of wind, Cousin is enjoying the final 24 hours of his race.

“I never thought about quitting, I always thought about solutions to make it to the end. I have to reflect now what I have achieved when even a few years ago I never thought I could be at the start and finish of this race. I’ll take advantage of my last few hours solo, on my own to reflect on that.”

In coming to the Vendée Globe from a professional career outside of sailing – albeit many years since thanks to the unfailing support of Groupe SETIN for ten years – Cousin has a lot in common with Ari Huusela, the Finnish airline pilot who is 25th and bringing up the rear of the fleet. Huusela, 57, will return to flying long-haul after recovering from his Vendée Globe epic. On a ‘once in a lifetime’ Vendée Globe challenge, Huusela finds himself in two minds – wanting to carry on enjoying every last day – but at the same time becoming increasingly frustrated that the weather systems are conspiring against him and with that his ETA keeps slipping.

“Mentally it has been quite hard recently, I have been struggling mentally with these things these last three days, sometimes it is very depressing after two days of sailing that your ETA is still two or three days more sailing than expected. It feels like getting to the finish line is a never ending story. It would be nice to be back on dry land, especially now when all the others are there. But I am not in a hurry, I just try to concentrate on these moments and enjoy these days. The weather has been quite nice since yesterday, the waves have not been too bad. Now it is quite good, light conditions and I will try to enjoy it, with a nice sea state.”

Huusela’s big bonus that is adding to his motivation is that his sponsorship programme with Stark a leading Finnish building materials company has just won two awards in a national marketing and sponsorship competition.

Meantime Sam Davies and Isabelle Joschke, sailing outwith the race, are due back in Les Sables d’Olonne next Tuesday both having slowed down last night to let an Atlantic depression pass in front of them.

- Advertisment -

Subscribe to our newsletter

To be updated with all the latest news, offers and special announcements.

LATEST ARTICLES

Tuxedo Yachting House launches its first boat: the Tuxedo 13.800

Founded by Laura and Francesco Ceccarelli, Tuxedo Yachting House launches its first boat: the Tuxedo 13.800, a walk-around by Italian designer Luca...

Australia capsize US team’s F50 during training in Bermuda

There was huge drama as we continue the countdown to the Bermuda Sail Grand Prix presented by Hamilton Princess, as the Australia...

Alicante is confirmed as final host city for The Ocean Race Europe

The Ocean Race Europe will visit in Alicante, with the Spanish city confirmed as the fourth host city to be announced for...

Vicem 50 Classic has successful public debut in the United States

Turkish yacht builder Vicem Yachts is proud to announce the successful public debut of the first two hulls in their new 50...

SailGP Launches Second Season with Oracle Cloud Technologies

Oracle and SailGP, sailing’s premier racing league, have expanded their successful data analytics platform leading into the second season. SailGP taps Oracle...

SailGP: Bermuda Sail Grand Prix presented by Hamilton Princess

 SailGP and the Bermuda Tourism Authority have been working closely following the Bermuda Government’s tightening of COVID-19 protocols to ensure that the...

Maserati and Soldini ready for the Plymouth-La Rochelle record

Maserati Multi 70 and Giovanni Soldini ready to set sail for the Plymouth-La Rochelle record Possible departure scheduled for Thursday 15 April...

Heesen Yachts announce the sale of Project Altea, YN 19550

Heesen is delighted to announce the sale of Project Altea, YN 19550, the second yacht to be built on the Nova Plus...

Technohull’s T7 creates a stunning new breed of smaller boat

A brand-new category of sporty, comfortable dayboats will hit the water near Piraeus later in April, when Technohull launches its new 7.8m...

Yanmar and the new sponsorship deal with The World Wake Association

Yanmar Marine International (YMI) has announced a new sponsorship deal with The World Wake Association (WWA), confirming its support for key international wakesurf...