Francois Gabart, his four-man team and three others managed to rally Marseille to Tunis in just 13 hours 55 minutes. This was the fastest time they had ever crossed the Mediterranean. It happened on Saturday 28 May to Sunday 29 May. The French improved the record held by Pascal Bidegorry (11 crew) for 12 years at Banque Populaire V (14 hours 20 minutes 34 sec).
Gabart was joined by Bidegorry, Emilien Levigne, and Guillaume Gatefait this weekend. Five men rode a maxi-trimaran 32-meters long capable of flying thanks its foils (side appendages). It left the shipyards last summer and covered the theoretical distance of 455 miles (about 842km) at an average speed of 33.7 knots/hour (about 62.5 km/h).
Francois Gabart has been in the Mediterranean for one month and explained that the attempt was not on his program. He and his team were going to Tunis on Sunday, and that there was an "episode de mistral" coming. "So why not (the record, editor’s note)?"
The Vendee Globe winner 2012-2013 (solo nonstop round the globe race aboard Imoca monohulls) set a new record. He also holds the record for the solo round-the-world race in 42 days and 23 hours.
The 39-year old skipper is now in command of the new giant of the seas. This boat is the latest addition to an elite fleet. We have the ambition not only to win races, but also to break records with this boat. The Jules Verne Trophy is the most coveted, and it's the one that makes us dream. It was non-stop crewed around the globe, a record held by Francis Joyon of Idec Sport in 40 days 23hrs)," said the sailor.
Francois Gabart registered for the Route du Rhum. This solo transatlantic race will begin on November 6th from Saint-Malo. However, he is unable to participate in the start. He must show a certificate of measurement from the Ultim class, on which he relies, which will allow him to take the start. This is due to a dispute about the conformity and safety rules. The sailor filed legal proceedings.