Never a victory had been played in a finish so tight for 40 years and the first edition! At 62, Francis Joyon won this Monday morning the Route du Rhum after a great body to body with the young François Gabart.
The seventh was the good one! Since his first participation in 1990, Francis Joyon had never managed to win on the Route du Rhum.
He cut the line by winning at 23h21 local (04h21 metropolis, 03h21 GMT) after 7 days 14 hours 21 minutes and 47 seconds spent at sea, a new record (the precedent was established by Loïck Peyron in 2014, 7d 15h 8min 32sec).
And Gabart, who held the lead for almost the entire seven days of this solo Atlantic crossing, finished second with just 7 minutes and 8 seconds behind Joyon.
But who would have thought that Joyon, at the helm of a 12-year-old boat, could blow the victory to new-generation sailors, pilot of super machines of 32 m long able to fly +? Still chimerical 36 hours ago, Joyon's victory became possible when the 60-year-old merged on Gabart to offer the second closest finish in the history of the Route du Rhum.