Lorient Horta Solo: Gwénolé Gahinet in the starting blocks on Safran-Guy Cotten

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On Saturday, September 6, the skipper of the Figaro Safran-Guy Cotten will start the final race of the season, the Lorient Horta Solo. This race is a round trip (2,260 miles in total) between Lorient and the island of Faial in the Azores. It is a straightforward route, but a strategic race, for which Gahinet has prepared keenly.

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There will be 20 competitors at the start of this new biannual race on the Figaro class calendar. This year, the Lorient Horta Solo will close the Championnat de France Elite de Course au Large en Solitaire (France’s elite offshore solo sailing championship), so the sailors will be giving everything on this long race where sleep management and weather analysis will be crucial. “You have to get into a good rhythm and analyse the weather properly,” Gahinet says. “I love it, I’m more comfortable on longer routes than on round the cans races. Also, it will be the first time I have sailed to Azores in the race.”

A good hand to play
In his first season in Figaro, Gahinet has already had some very impressive results. He won the Transat AG2R LA MONDIALE with Paul Meilhat, he was the leading rookie and 13th overall in La Solitaire du Figaro–Eric Bompard cachemire. The skipper of Safran-Guy Cotten has shown real talent in handling his Figaro. For the Lorient Horta Solo, the young sailor from La Trinité-sur-Mer knows he has a good hand to play. He enjoys weather analysis and strategy, he knows his boat really well and is a master of sleep management. “The longer the race goes on, the better I am,” Gahinet enthuses.

On Sunday, August 31, the prologue for Lorient Horta Solo will begin in the famous harbour of Lorient, that Gahinet is very familiar with. Then, on Saturday, September 6, the fleet of 20 Figaro will depart from Lorient BSM (the submarine base) to the Azores. After a five-day stopover in Horta, the sailors will resume the race, with arrivals expected in Lorient from September 26 to 28.

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