The 2018 edition of the French J/80 National Championships took place in Pornic, France and was hosted by the CN Pornic Club from November 1st to 4th.
Forty-four teams from France, England, Spain, and Ireland enjoyed a total of nine races sailed over the four-day event on the beautiful Bay of Biscay.
The fleet enjoyed a wide variety of weather conditions. Nevertheless, it was quite apparent one crew stood head and shoulders above the rest of the teams from the four nations that were participating; Simon Moriceau’s team on Armen Habitat (Jean Queveau, Pierre Loic Berthet, Paul Medinger, and Vincent Guillarm). After starting off with a 1-1-2, Moriceau’s team never looked back. Despite a 16th in race four, they closed with a 4-1-4-1-2 to win with just 16 pts net; a full 18 points clear of the second place team.
While not maintaining the same pace of podium finishes, the English crew on J.A.T. (skippered by Kevin Sproul and crew of Phil Taylor, Chris Taylor, Jessica Slater, and Helen Yates) nevertheless kept the pressure on the French team. Their tally of 5-3-4-8-1-8-3-6-4 was good for 34 pts net to take the silver medal.
Rounding out the podium was another French team, Simon Bertheau’s APCC Equipage Jeune; they barely took that honor over the next two boats in the top five. Simon’s crew of Nicolas Bouchet, Baptiste Hulin, Marine Cottenceau, and Theau Guilcher managed a 7-9-17-5-8-3-9-8-9 for 58 pts net. Just one point back in fourth place was a leading Spanish team, Iker Almondoz’s Garatu with 59 pts net. Then, only one more point in arrears in fifth place was the top women skipper for the regatta, Maxime Rousseaux’s CN ST Cast Grand Ouest Etiquette team.
As for the other top awards, here is the list:
- First Women crew – SAMBA skippered by Christelle Philippe
- First Masters crew – the Spanish Garatu skippered by Inigu Jauregui (J/80 World Champion- silver)
- First Youth crew (under 25)- Simon Bertheau’s APCC Equipage Jeune