CAP POUR ELLES by ENGIE – the 100% female crew has arrived!

By Engie - 04 December 2023 - 18:29

Our two navigators Tiphaine et Pamela crossed the finish line of their first Transat Jacques Vabre race on Sunday, 26 November 2023! They came 29th out of 44 boats and showed determination, courage and positivity to overcome all the obstacles and cross the finish line in 21 days. 


Remember that the ENGIE DFDS Brittany Ferries boat was one of three boats with a 100% crew for this transatlantic race. ENGIE is proud to have supported this energetic duo. 


A summary of their adventure:

Departure Sunday, 29 October 2023 on choppy seas just as storm Ciaran was getting underway. Mandatory layover in Lorient for all Class40s until the storm had passed.  

New departure on Monday 6 November from Lorient, bound for the Canaries before setting sail for Martinique.  

While navigating a wave, their large sail (an A2 Spinnaker) was ripped. Pamela had to climb to the top of the mast to free the A2’s sock which had become caught. The manoeuvre was performed without any problems and the women turned their attention to repairing the sail. 

Tiphaine, a vet, shared this experience with us in an amusing fashion: “The difference between sewing up a spinnaker and a cow is that the spinnaker doesn't try to kill you every time that you stick the needle in”. 

Despite the difficulties involved in hoisting up the A2 spinnaker without it breaking, the team mates stayed positive and continued with their efforts. 

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A few periods without any wind tested the duo's nerves, but served as an opportunity for them to perform repairs safely and enjoy the natural wonders of their adventure. Tiphaine and Pamela were able to admire the starry sky and enjoy a number of chance encounters with dolphins, tortoises and moon fish, as well as flying fish, which seemed to have a bit of a thing for Tiphaine. 


Little in the way of respite, the team mates crossed an enormous squall, full of black clouds. They managed to haul down their spinnaker without anything breaking. The wind was so strong that they surfed at 20 kn – their record for this race.  


Just as they were approaching the finish, the A2 spinnaker gave out and their A4 and A6 also ripped. They still managed to maintain speed on their approach to Diamond Rock, which signalled that the finish was not far off. 


The women were pleased to see the Martinique coast and were in a hurry to drink fresh water and eat!  


Well done Tiphaine and Pamela who finished this excellent adventure in exactly 21 days, 23 hours, 1 minute and 13 seconds, arriving on Sunday 26 November at 5:24 PM. 

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