Global Ocean Race - Final prizegiving in Les Sables d’Olonne

GOR Les Sables d’Olonne Prize Giving

In the Global Ocean Race, separated momentarily from their Class40s, the teams attended the final, official event of the GOR 2011-12 in Les Sables d’Olonne and joined 150 guests at the event’s prize giving held in the town’s Salle Audubon on Boulevard Pasteur in the middle of Les Sable’s old town on Saturday evening.


For Leg 5 from Charleston to Les Sables d’Olonne, trophies were presented by Yves Roucher, Stéphane Tournade and Nathalie Fougere from the mayor’s office and for the overall prizes for the entire 32,000-mile circumnavigation, each team was presented with stainless steel, chromed sculptures by the Charleston artist, Fred Moore, depicting Class40 sails with the distinctive orange flat-top mainsail unique to GOR Category 0 boats (see GOR Leg 5 and overall ranking below).

Josh Hall, Race Director of the GOR, opened proceedings by thanking the town of Les Sables d’Olonne; the Class40 Association; the Capitainerie of Port Olona and Sports Nautiques Sablais: 'We’ve had a very warm welcome here in beautiful Les Sables d’Olonne and we’re very proud to finish this edition of the GOR in such a famous sailing town,' commented Hall. 'I also think the GOR competitors and Race Organisation should thank themselves,' he added. 'This race is all about people,' Hall explained.

'It’s a race run by sailors for sailors and it’s a race that has to thank – on behalf of the organisers and the skippers – all the families, the children, the sponsors and the friends and supporters who came down to the pontoons in the stopovers to help the teams,' said the Race Director. 'I think we can be really, really proud of the impact that the race and the individual teams have had around the world, so thank you all very much.'

GOR 11-12 Les Sables d'Olonne Prize Giving - Global Ocean Race

Hall went onto read messages of congratulations to Cessna Citation from the Prime Minister of New Zealand, the Rt. Hon. John Key, and from the Commodore of the Royal Cape Yacht Club in Cape Town for Phesheya-Racing (see below for the messages) before handing over to Stéphane Tournade, the local official responsible for all marine events in Les Sables: 'We’re very proud to host the Global Ocean Race here,' said Tournade.

'It’s very special as Class40 have their Head Quarters here and having a round-the-world race arriving in Les Sables is normal for us as hosts of the Vendée Globe,' he added. 'We have to discuss the next edition of the GOR, but we’re very keen on having the event back here,' he confirmed. 'Thank you for coming and congratulations and we’re waiting for you to come back with the race again,' concluded Tournade.

In a special award, Phillippa Hutton-Squire of Phesheya-Racing was presented with the overall Spirit of the GOR Award and received a Luminox Yachting Countdown Timer from the GOR’s Timekeeping Sponsor. Two further Luminox Yachting Countdown Timers were awarded to Conrad Colman of Cessna Citation for winning the Leg 5 Luminox Photo Competition and Frans Budel of Class40 Sec. Hayai left the prize giving stage with a Countdown Timer for the GOR Spirit of Leg 5 Award.

Phesheya Racing Trophy - GOR 11-12 Les Sables d'Olonne Prize Giving - Global Ocean Race

New Zealand skipper, Conrad Colman and his Australian co-skipper, Scott Cavanough returned to the stage to collect two Luminox Colormark Watches for the bluQube 24-hour Run Prize having hit the highest average speed in Leg 5 with Cessna Citation at 339.2nm over 24 hours as the duo shot through the bluQube Scoring Gate in mid-North Atlantic, although this phenomenal speed falls short of Colman’s Leg 2 24-hour run of 359nm.

Race Committee member, Alan Green, presented Phillippa Hutton-Squire and Nick Leggatt of Phesheya-Racing with the Cape Horn Navigation Award for submitting the most accurate ETA at the world’s southernmost cape when 1,000 miles west of the landmark, an award that included brass sculptures and membership to the Royal Institute of Navigation in Kensington, London.

For the second time in the GOR, the Seahorse Magazine and www.thedailysail.com Media Prize was split between two Class40s with Frans Budel from Sec. Hayai and Nick Leggatt from Phesheya-Racing winning a year’s subscription to Seahorse Magazine and www.thedailysail.com for the high quality of the video footage, text and images recorded on board during the North Atlantic leg and for media coverage in their home countries.

GOR 11-12 Les Sables d'Olonne Prize Giving - Sec Hayai - Global Ocean Race

In another split from the normal format of previous GOR prize giving ceremonies, the Garmin Navigation Award was shared between Scott Cavanough of Cessna Citation and Sergio Frattaruolo from Financial Crisis with the two GOR 2011-12 skippers and two competitors for the GOR 2013-14 accepting a handheld Garmin eTrex 30 GPS unit each to – as the GOR’s Race Director commented – 'help you find your way to the next GOR in 2013'.

Having driven direct to the prize giving from Austria, the team from the GOR sponsor Celox Sailing, including Gottfried Poessl and Peter Fabrowski, also presented two special prizes: 'We have followed the race closely throughout the GOR,' explained Gottfried Poessl. 'Every month we run a competition with our customers, clients, friends and employees and asked them to vote for the best boat in the GOR and the best sailor,' he added. 'We know that the budgets for the teams are small and with the race now over that their pockets are now empty,' said Poessl. 'So we decided to give €2,000 to each winner,' he explained, awarding the two prizes to a delighted Marco Nannini of Financial Crisis for the best boat and to Phillippa Hutton-Squire for the best sailor. 'Next time, we’re in the game for the GOR 2013, so the Celox Sailing team will be fighting hard for the best boat and the best sailor award!'


Finally, in recognition of their skill, knowledge and judgement throughout the GOR, the event’s Race Directors; Sylvie Viant, Alan Green and Peter Cockayne were invited on stage to receive a special, additional, engraved Fred Moore sculpture for their service to the race and the teams.

With the final official event of the GOR completed, the four Class40s are heading home after the nine-month circumnavigation. Phesheya-Racing and Financial Crisis are heading to the Solent; Sec. Hayai is heading for the Budel’s homeport in Holland and Cessna Citation is sailing to Lorient – Conrad Colman’s home town in Europe - at the invitation of the town’s mayor to celebrate a local sailor winning a round-the-world race before continuing to the Solent for corporate sailing.

Messages of congratulations to the teams:

To Cessna Citation from the Rt. Hon. John Key, Prime Minister of New Zealand: 'Congratulations on your win in the Global Ocean Race along with your co-skipper Scott Cavanough. This is a remarkable achievement, and spending 150 days at sea shows the high level of endurance and perseverance that you both have. Sailing is a true Kiwi pastime and it’s great that you have been able to take your passion for being on the ocean to such a high level. I see you have more global circumnavigations planned, and I’d like to wish you all the best with these. I’ll be watching your future success with interest.'

To Phesheya-Racing from Dale Kushner, Commodore of the Royal Cape Yacht Club, Cape Town: 'The product of your focus, determination and seamanship over the last nine months of racing have not only in the achievement of having successfully and safely completed the Global Ocean Race but has also resulted in Phillippa’s first circumnavigation and Nick’s third – an achievement shared by a few. Phesheya’s campaign of promoting global ocean racing to our local South African amateurs and formally disadvantaged sailors remains a shared objective of the Royal Cape Yacht Club and we will continue to promote and support the aims and objectives of your campaign going forward.'

To the GOR from Dale Kushner, Commodore of the Royal Cape Yacht Club, Cape Town: 'The Royal Cape Yacht Club hereby extends its sincere compliments to you and your team in having successfully concluded the 2011-12 Global Ocean Race campaign. Your continued dedication towards the success of the GOR and your commitment and unfailing support towards its competitors is truly matchless. You have made your dreams a determined reality and now you find yourself allowing others to reach theirs. The RCYC remains proud to be partnered with the GOR and we look forward to having the next fleet in Cape Town.'

GOR Leg 5 ranking:

1. Cessna Citation 17d 22h 50m 14s
2. Financial Crisis 19d 01h 19m 48s
3. Phesheya-Racing 21d 09h 10m 21s
4. Sec. Hayai 22d 08h 24m 44s
Buckley Systems RTD
Campagne de France RTD

GOR overall ranking after five legs:

1. Cessna Citation: 150d 02h 59m 39s; Av. SOG 8.96kts; best 24hr 359.1nm (162 points)
2. Financial Crisis: 158d 13h 28m 03s; Av SOG 8.46kts; best 24hr 301.3nm (132 points)
3. Phesheya-Racing: 168d 13h 15m 41s; Av. SOG 8.04kts; best 24hr 277.9nm (96 points)
4. Sec. Hayai: Legs 1, 4 and 5

Buckley Systems RTD
Campagne de France RTD

Guests at the GOR Leg 5 Prize Giving included: Muriel Robin (Secretary Class40); Coralie Rassinoux (Service Communication Les Sables d’Olonne); Mark Blomfield; Edita Filadelfiova (Slovak Embassy, Paris); Di and Johnny Hutton-Squire; Mike Thrower; Paul and Sue Peggs; Maja Strakova; Ella Connolly; Frédéric Meunier (MC-TEC); Marco Lefebvre (V1D2); Lorraine Allison (bluQube); Gottfried Poessl and Peter Fabrowski (Celox Sailing); David and Abby Thomson; Jenny Amouraben-Launay (Ouest-France); Carine Baran (Les Sables Infos); Jean-Pierre Giraud; Julien Zajac; Duff; Myrna and Jolanda Budel; Patrick and Michelle Conway; Yvonne Beusker; Tom and Joek Boeke; Guy Dumas; Mark Featherstone; John and Liz Mansell; Salvo Mirabella; Marc Lombard; Alessandro di Benedetto

Global Ocean Race website