The prize-giving ceremony this Saturday 9 December, live at the Paris Boat Show, enabled the grand champions to celebrate this 2017 edition of the Mini-Transat La Boulangère, whilst providing an opportunity for the organisers and partners to take stock of this rather unique event.
The Mini sailors were easy to recognise with their tanned complexions and their lost air in the aisles of the Paris boat show, coupled with the unique way they fall into the arms of like-minded souls as they flit from one stand to the next. Even though they’ve sailed the race singlehanded, they know that they shared a one-off adventure, which will have undoubtedly formed some indelible bonds between them.
The prize-giving is also an opportunity for one and all to take stock, with the organisers able to pinpoint the areas with which they’re satisfied and those that need to be worked on to further improve the event’s fluidity. Equally, it’s a chance for the partners to analyse and justify their decision to support the organisers in this 2017 edition of the Mini-Transat La Boulangère.
Patrick Maurin, President of the Collectif Rochelais for the Mini-Transat
“Some very fine stories have been written here. Thank you to the racers for what you’ve shared with us. Thank you to the patrons of the event, La Boulangère and the greater administrative district council of La Rochelle, the Town of Las Palmas and the Town of Le Marin, as well as to all our other partners. Equally, I mustn’t forget the FFVoile and its umpires. Thank you to the entire organisation team as well as the support boats.”
Christophe Aillet, CEO of La Boulangère & Co
“We’re delighted to have been a part of the Mini-Transat given the mindset required for this race, which is very much in line with what we’d perceived.
The wind was a little lacking on the first leg and the trade wind wasn’t very strong on the second, which meant we didn’t see the true potential of these incredible boats. However, that didn’t stop our 81 skippers from having an extraordinary experience. The performance posted by Ian Lipinski, who took victory in this year’s prototype category, after finishing first in the production boat category in 2015, needs to be applauded. Similarly, I can’t forget how well the female skippers sailed: Clarisse Crémer who came 2nd in the production boats and Camille Taque who ranked 9th out of 25 in the prototype category. With La Boulangère being committed to greater male/female equality in 2017, it can only congratulate itself on such a track record. We’re very proud to associate ourselves with a transatlantic race, which enables ten women to make both the start and the finish! Massive congratulations to them and to all the participants!”
Antoine Grau Vice-President of the greater administrative district council of La Rochelle
“Two years ago to the day, the Classe Mini entrusted us with the responsibility of organising the Mini-Transat 2017. It was a major challenge: we had to strike up relations with partner venues like Las Palmas and Le Marin. We also had to put together an organisation committee. Thank you too to our private partners: Enedis and La Boulangère & Co. The Classe Mini entrusted us with a tough mission given the quality of the organisation of the Mini-Transat 2015. We hope we managed to rise to the challenge and that we lived up to the expectations of all those racers involved. You the racers pulled off a fantastic sporting feat and our performance had to be equal to the occasion.”
Lucas Montagne, President of the Classe Mini
“Thank you to all the organisation team and to Race Management. A considerable amount of work goes on in the background to make this race what it is. For today’s racer, it’s a real luxury to allow yourself this time out. It wouldn’t have been possible without the support of the FFVoile (French Sailing Federation) and Henry Bacchini in particular, who has been continuously giving the race its backing for the past thirty years or so.”