Events / sponsoring - 14 June 2022
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The result achieved by Ylliam XII – Comptoir Immobilier in the Bol d’Or Mirabaud 2022 did not meet the expectations of its crew. Despite this disappointment, the team compensated for their desire to shine in the rankings by enjoying the pleasure of sailing in an exceptional landscape.


The 2021 victory in the prestigious Bol d’Or Mirabaud should have propelled Ylliam XII Comptoir Immobilier to repeat its success. Unfortunately, despite the unwavering commitment of the entire team during the 16 hours of racing, a stroke of bad luck altered the course of events and prevented the TF35 of Bertrand Demole from showcasing its potential as intended.


Optimal Preparation

The weather forecast was certainly not encouraging, and everyone knew that the race could be long. The TF35s, which require a minimum amount of wind to fully utilize their potential, knew from the start that it would be tough, and that flying moments would be limited.

The boat had been prepared in the days leading up to the departure. The crew even went out for a short maintenance outing on Thursday before the race, to identify any final potential issues. On Friday, everyone worked on refining small details. Cleaning, oiling… “We don’t prepare the boat specifically for the Bol,” Thierry Briend remarked the day before departure. “We’re always ready, it’s a boat that races throughout the season. The only thing that changes is that we bring a little more water and food on board.”


Climb in the Pack

The cannon shot was fired as planned on Saturday at 10 a.m. in particularly light airs. Ylliam XII – Comptoir Immobilier navigated fairly well and stayed in the pack of TF35s, led by Spindrift. At the exit of the small lake, Bertrand Demole and his crew were in the middle of the fleet. No clear option was taken, and the competitors followed the breeze regimes throughout the day’s evolution, mainly on the Swiss side until after Lausanne, then after crossing to St-Gingolph on the French coast before the halfway mark. At the end of the lake, in the middle of the afternoon, the wind completely died down, and the sailboats remained stuck before picking up a little wind to head back to the big lake. Ylliam XII – Comptoir Immobilier passed the Bouveret mark 3rd in the TF35 class, behind Alilnghi Red Bull Racing and Zen Too. Spindrift, leading the pack throughout the first part of the race, was forced to retire due to a technical problem.


Shock on the Return

On the return leg, the fleet led by Team Sailfever, which had attempted a bold option south of Lausanne to escape, found itself grouped at the entrance to the small lake in the evening in a new windless area. A collision with a floating branch forced Ylliam XII – Comptoir Immobilier to stop to clear the object, and the time lost in the maneuver could never be recovered. “It was a long race, we had to hang on,” Bertrand Demole remarked upon returning to shore. “There was a little wind but still some action. Unfortunately, we hit a piece of wood during one of the rare moments when we were flying back. We had to heel the boat, do some tinkering before continuing, but there were no serious damages. Just lost time. The end, however, was very long, there was no wind at all. Of course, we always have fun, there’s a beautiful environment, beautiful light, motivation, competition. But when there’s no wind, especially for a flying sailboat, it can be quite painful.”


Laborious Finish

In the end, and after an endless descent towards Geneva in the small lake, Ylliam-XII – Comptoir Immobilier crossed the finish line at 2:56 a.m., after 16 hours and 56 minutes of racing. Fifth in the TF35 class, the boat is 21st overall. The light airs were beneficial to the light boats designed to glide in displacement mode… Foilers have their limits in very light wind. But it wasn’t a surprise. “I think this is my worst result in the Bol d’Or, so obviously, we’re not super proud. But it was a good day, there was a good atmosphere on board, we ended up having a good time.”

It is worth noting that the event was won by Christian Wahl on his D35 Double You Team. The lake wizard secured his 8th victory in the event, a record in the history of the race.

At the end of this first part of the season, Ylliam XII – Comptoir Immobilier finds itself in 6th place with 16 points ahead of Vitamina Sailing, which has 21 points. Zen Too, in 5th place, has 14 points, while Spindrift and Team Sailfever, in 4th and 3rd respectively, are tied with 12 points each. The championship is led by Alinghi Red Bull Racing with 4 points, closely followed by Realtam for Léman hope with 5 points. The small gaps keep the game open for the upcoming races.

The TF 35s will now take a summer break before leaving Lake Geneva to join Lake Garda. The Malcesine Cup will take place from September 8th to 11th, and the final will be held in Cannes from October 6th to 9th.

photo : ©Yves Ryncki


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