winner of a formidable tussle against Dalin, Ruyant wins in Imoca

At the helm of LinkedOut, the Northerner resisted the return of Apivia to win in Guadeloupe this Monday morning in 11 days, 17 hours, 36 minutes and 25 seconds.

Special envoy to Pointe-à-Pitre

The sailors of the Route du rhum had therefore decided to play with our earthly nerves until the end this year. After the showdown between Charles Caudrelier (Maxi Edmonde de Rothschild) and François Gabart (SVR-Lazartigue) separated by 3h15 on Wednesday in Pointe-à-Pitre at the Ultims, then Erwan Le Roux (Koesio), winner ahead of Quentin Vlaminck (Arkema) for nineteen miserable minutes on Sunday, it was the turn of Thomas Ruyant (LinkedOut) and Charlie Dalin (Apivia) to play a formidable score overnight from Sunday to Monday. With the victory, at the end of the suspense, of Ruyant.

Dalin returned to within 8 miles of Ruyant

We thought that Dalin, dispossessed of his first place on Friday after having masterfully dominated the debates from Saint-Malo, was going to be able to reverse the trend. In the very tricky bypass of the island from the west, the Northerner found himself stuck along the coast, almost at a standstill. Apivia thus returned to less than eight miles from Le Ruyant, under pressure, but who passed the last freeing buoy in front of the Saintes archipelago before finding some wind and heading towards the finish line in the Caribbean night (just before 8 a.m. in Paris). Its time: 11 days, 17 hours, 36 minutes and 25 seconds. Dalin is expected a good hour later, logically followed by Jérémie Beyou (Charal), an excellent third on a boat launched very recently. A royal top three.

The native of Saint-Paul-sur-Mer already knew the taste of victory on the Route du rhum. Twelve years ago, it already won in the monohulls, but in Class40. At 41, he has written the most beautiful line of his record against the great favorite in the category, who had recently won everything except the Vendée Globe last year (first on the line but second after the compensation granted to Yannick Bestaven for his participation in Kevin Escoffier’s research).

To say that the victory of this father of two children is a surprise would be greatly exaggerated. Ruyant was at the helm of a boat almost identical to that of his rival, released the same year and designed by the same architect, the brilliant Guillaume Verdier. The Northerner knew how to bide his time, ready to jump at Dalin’s throat, waiting for the slightest weakness. The exhausting battle of tackling the tacks when hitting the trade winds on Friday turned the race upside down. Ruyant took control of the event and has not left them since.

The success of Dunkirk also carries a strong symbol, a powerful message of solidarity. Solitary and united, the browser defends the colors of LinkedOut, a platform for helping the most disadvantaged. “ Not browsing just for my apple brings more meaning to what I do », he told Le Figaro before setting off in the Vendée Globe, which he finished in sixth place.

Thomas Ruyant before the start of the Route du rhum Jean Louis Carli

A great disappointment for Dalin, 2nd as in the Vendée Globe

For Dalin, this second place will certainly have a bitter taste. Apivia was unquestionably the best boat on the board, the most optimized anyway. The page of the marriage between Le Havrais and Apivia will turn on this failure since the Imoca has been sold (to Clarisse Crémer and Banque Populaire). The Norman will continue the adventure in Imoca on a new boat, currently under construction, with victory in the Vendée Globe (2024) in sight. Like Thomas Ruyant who will swap his LinkedOut for a new monohull. These two have not finished writing the history of ocean racing in the most emblematic class of single-handed monohulls.

The sailors who have written the legend of the Route du rhum since 1978

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