Following Safran’s invitation to tender for the technical preparation of the boat, Kaïros, Roland Jourdain and Sophie Vercelletto’s team, will assist Morgan Lagravière for the next Vendée Globe. It is a choice that is as much about the team spirit that it is essential to foster around Lagravière as the technical skills of the team.
Kaïros, the company built by Roland Jourdain, has immense experience, a high-quality infrastructure, a favourable geographical location and a culture that is about people as much as sport and which will be sensitive to the needs of assisting Lagravière to improve his performance.
"Roland Jourdain has experience of managing projects like this already, and Concarneau is an ideal base with a port accessible regardless of tide," Gérard Le Page, Chairman and CEO of the Safran Sailing Team explained. "And that is not to mention the close proximity of Port-la-Forêt and the Pôle France (the high-level sailing training centre), where Morgan will attend training camps to prepare him for the Vendée Globe. Finally, the bond between Roland Jourdain and Morgan confirmed the choice with eight months to the Vendée Globe. We routinely operate a call to tender when a significant contract expires. The one that we had with SOG, the company created by Marc Guillemot, was coming to an end in the spring of 2016. Therefore, we decided to conduct a wide consultation before making our decision."
Sail, sail and sail again
For Jourdain, this challenge cannot be managed without trust. "Morgan and I knew each other a bit, but our relationship was really strengthened during the delivery of the IMOCA, lent by Nico Boidevézi, from Concarneau to St. Barts before Morgan's Transat," Jourdain said. Clearly, there are some similarities in the approaches of the two sailors: the same ability to express their feelings without jargon, the same desire to work with others in order to improve.
"There's no secret," Jourdain said. "We'll spend as much time as possible sailing together in various forms: two-handed, crewed, faux solo...We have no more than eight months before the Vendée Globe, so, we have to be efficient. That requires having a fairly close understanding of each other."
Safran should be back in the water in Port-la-Forêt at the end of the month and will then be delivered to Concarneau. April will be primarily dedicated to checking the winter refit before a shared delivery of the boat to New York for the New York - Vendée race, which will be the first solo race for Morgan on his new boat. June and July will once again be devoted to training sails before the final preparatory work in the boatyard for the Vendée Globe.