Here at French Waterways we are thrilled to hear that Juliette Petres has completed the Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe. The Trans-Atlantic yacht race is a gruelling 3542 mile solo race from Saint-Malo in France to Guadeloupe in the French West Indies and Juliette crossed the finish line on 22nd November.
We have been following Juliette’s progress with interest, as our partners, specialist waterside and heritage property agency Eau et Patrimoine, sponsored her and her boat ‘Water and Heritage’. They have been blogging about her journey and the tales are truly remarkable. 32 year old Juliette managed a top 20 finish and completed the 4353 mile feat in 19 days, 23 hours and 52 minutes at an average speed of 7.38 knots. You may notice that she did almost 1,000 miles more than the direct route and that’s because of her efforts to navigate the route with the perils of changing winds and unpredictable weather! The Route du Rhum is a tough race, with fatigue and sleep deprivation reaching dangerous levels and racers contending with storms, high winds and lumpy seas.
The gruelling race takes place every 4 years in November and this time had a record number of entries – with 91 boats starting the race. The start is an amazing sight to behold with Saint-Malo welcoming 200,000 visitors to wave off the racers.
The race record was broken this year by Loick Peyron who completed the course in a mind-blowing 7 days, 15 hours and 8 minutes. However, there are different classes of yachts and the Class 40 tend to start coming across the finish line in about 17 or 18 days. Although we were obviously cheering on Juliette, it was great to see Sir Robin Knox-Johnson claim third spot in his 60 foot yacht ‘Grey Power’.
We’d like to offer our congratulations to all of the racers, Eau et Patrimoine and of course Juliette Petres.