On the 4th of October, the first round of the Tempest Challenge 2008 took place, organized by the Yacht Club at Fort de France (YCM), in which nine boats took part with three legs completed in Fort de France Bay.
“This first day of racing took place in showers, squalls and rain, but a few gusts nevertheless allowed us to get underway,” said Albert Jean-Charles from the Reha Tempest team; Max Volny and J-Marc Lauren on Go took all three legs; Reha Team finished in second place.
The series will start again next year when it reunites all the sailors in Martinique for the 10th January and 25th April, finishing on the 6th June.
About the Tempest: From architect Ian Proctor, the Tempest has the stability of a keelboat with the sailing behavior of a dinghy; thanks to its sail shape and a spinnaker, the Tempest can reach an impressive speed. Its keel is fitted with a steel bulb but looks like a daggerboard. The boat rolls little but remains easy to maneuver.
About Reha Team: the two crewmembers Albert Jean-Charles and Alain Lataut comprehensively won the 2007 French Senior Tempest Championships. More recently, our two Martiniquais broke into the top ten when they finished 9th in the World Tempest Championships out of 33 global crews!
The World Tempest Championships took place from the 16th to 22nd August 2008 at the Weymouth Sailing Academy in England, a mythical place since this will be the forum for the 2012 Olympic Games.
Albert Jean-Charles describes the races: “The nine legs took place in ‘muscular’ conditions, with the wind between 20 and 30 knots during the whole week, dropping on the last day only to 18 knots where the sun finally made an appearance. Eight nations took part, with six German crews, of which five were in the World Top Ten, including Franck Weigelt and Christian Rusitschtka (2008 World Champions), Christian Schafer and Andreas Mader (World Champions from 2000 to 2005 inclusive).
The World Championship in 2009 will take place in Spiez in Switzerland on Lake Thoun. Martinique currently has 15 Tempests and could be a candidate for an organizer in the 2010 World Championships, which would satisfy the wishes of many European and American crews.