Vendée Globe – Sam Davis aims for podium finish

Sam Davis on all fronts - Vendée Globe 2012
© Vincent Curutchet / Saveol
Vendée Globe 2012-12 gets underway on November 10th in Les Sables d'Olonne, France.

She just finished her Vendée Globe qualifying route, took on photo calls after photo calls and interviews after interviews...


She was barely back in her daily routine as a mother but was already about to start as a Volvo Ocean Race commentator before taking part in the parade marking the start of the stage start to Galway on Sunday 1st July. Samantha Davis never takes breaks and is on all fronts. The yachtswoman, who left again on the 3rd July for another training course, will sail around the world for the second time of her career on November 10 and does not forget about her goal: the Vendée Globe.

In 2009, Sam Davies took everyone by surprise. The petite Englishwoman, coming from the Figaro circuit, finished fourth of the 2008-2009 edition of the Vendée Globe, ahead of several of the favourites and other experienced sailors. This year, she is ready to do it again on Savéol. Even though she is aware there are going to be more expectations around her this time, nothing will spoil her happiness to sail offshore: 'People expect a lot from me, but I don’t see it as pressure. It’s only positive energy and pleasure'. The yachtswoman is full of energy and she will put it to good use during these 'three months of liberty' with the goal of staying safe until the end of the race. And, as she explains: 'If possible, faster than the last time'. If she mostly hopes 'to have no regret at the finish, no matter the result' and to do her best, Sam aims at the podium for her second Vendée Globe.

Beyond the performance, Samantha Davies has made it clear that 'this race is above all an adventure with a lot of unknown elements' she cannot wait to start for many different reasons. First, she wants to sail around the world again, which involves 'amazing days of gliding on the water, when the boat seems to be moving by herself' and she is also looking forward to enjoying some places again: 'I can’t wait to be back to Cape Horn, which I couldn’t even see the last time I was there because of strong winds and showers that made the boat hard to deal with, it was hell! This time, I’d like to see it under spinnaker, with the sun out!' Another thing she wants to feel again is the unique sensation of solo racing, something she does not experience often enough since she usually sails with a crew. As she says: 'In a single-handed race, you have to save your energy and think in the long term, like you would in a marathon. You have more time to observe the ocean, see gorgeous things, whales... There is definitely some pleasure and comfort.' And if the only woman to be pre-registered for now is looking forward to a fight around the world again, it is, of course, to get to struggle one more time against 'harder conditions' which lead her to push her own limits. The British skipper, who is confident and feels better prepared than four years ago, likes to 'fight in a real race' and to face others competitors even though she 'still feels like a rookie' compared to other skippers.

Vendée Globe website