On November 5 at 12:00Z, during its stopover in Cape Town, South Africa, the surveillance frigate (FS) Floréal had the honor of giving the start of the second leg of the Ocean Globe Race (OGR).
50 years after the 1973 Whitbread Round the World Race, for which Eric Tabarly designed Pen Duick VI, this year the OGR sees fourteen crews compete in a GPS-free sailing race. Among the competitors, five yachts fly the French flag, including the famous Pen Duick VI, skippered by Eric’s daughter, Marie Tabarly, and Triana, skippered by Jean d’Arthuys.
During the days leading up to the start, the exchanges with the competitors were of great richness for the sailors of the Floréal. The difficulties of this race require great human qualities and excellent navigating skills as well as an iron determination. Access to the commis’s networks, informed recommendations from the METOC, intervention on radios by the SIC sector, technical diagnosis of the electric generator by the machine group are all contributions through which the French Navy has demonstrated its know-how! At the same time, they underline his attachment to sailing and reveal the extent to which the same passion for the sea unites French sailors: in sailing as in combat, the crew is required to give the best of itself so that the boat can be raised to the highest of its abilities. The presence of a Navy vessel at the start aroused great enthusiasm among the race organisers and skippers.
Departing from Southampton in England on September 10, 2023, the yachts arrived in Cape Town between the end of October and the beginning of November. They are now heading back to New Zealand.
The entire crew of the Floréal wishes them “fair winds, fair seas”!