French Team Kalix Wins Archipelago Raid 08

Eric Proust and Romain Motteau, Team Kalix, have completed an outstanding six day Formula 18 catamaran race through the Stockholm, Åland and Finnish archipelago. Since the first day the highly experienced duo has been difficult to beat, showing great tactics and excellent boat handling. Since last Friday the competitors have passed 47 island checkpoints and sailed a total of 550 - 600 nautical miles. It was skipper Eric Proust’s fifth go at the Archipelago Raid when he finally took first, having reached the second and third step of the podium three of the previous races and had to abandon once. This year the team has since the start been the team to beat. Out of 47 checkpoints the team was first at 16, second at 14 and won four of the 11 legs.

”We have been preparing a lot for the Archipelago Raid this year. Romain trained one month entirely for the raid!” said Eric Proust on finally winning, and sums up the race as “difficult, superb, and unique”. Of the 22 starting teams, 20 teams made it to the finish line after six days and five nights of intense sailing on small Formula 18 catamarans.

The Archipelago Raid is considered one of the toughest sail races in the world, with physical sailing 14-16 hours per day. The short northern summer nights means the competitors get little sleep, around 2-5 hours per night. The navigation is a difficult challenge with small rocks and islands literally littered all over the archipelagos. With the high level of the competitors, there is no room for tactical errors. Endurance, team work, and a good sense of repairing boats are also important factors to succeed in the race.

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