Victorien Erussard, captain and founder of Energy Observer, and Thibaut Vauchel-Camus, skipper of the double-outrigger Solidaires En Peloton, are dock neighbors in the Route du Rhum basins. A chance for the two sailors and long time accomplices at sea to share their respective projects.
These two know each other very well. Victorien Erussard and Thibaut Vauchel-Camus first crossed paths on racing catamarans, about twenty years ago.
After competing against each other in many regatta, often in the lead, the two decided to work together on a common project in 2011.
With their Class 40 monohull Solidaires En Peloton, the two navigators racked up miles, podiums, and titles.
Since 2015, their paths have gone parallel but their friendship and complicity are as strong as ever.
The two skippers are now working separately, but both remain activists in their sailing.
Thibaut continues with his compelling story of Solidaires En Peloton, and his investment in fighting alongside the victims of multiple sclerosis.
Victorien has set himself a new challenge by tackling the technological feat that is Energy Observer.
Nonetheless, the two men stay in touch and never miss an opportunity to meet.
Thibaut Vauchel-Camus : “Energy Observer is an incredibly wide-reaching project”
As October comes to a close, Energy Observer and Solidaires En Peloton docked next to each other in the Route du Rhum basins. A great opportunity to exchange ideas.
“Energy Observer is spreading the message about environmental awareness, and that’s a subject I care deeply about, says Thibaut Vauchel-Camus, skipper of the Multi 50, sailing challenge Solidaires En Peloton. Victorien offers vital solutions for a better future and gives me confidence that the solutions currently being “sold” as good are truly viable in the long term. It also gives me insight about how to carry out such a large-scale project.”
What really motivates this ocean racer, who is equally interested in the environment and technology, is the aspect of developing and integrating innovative energy solutions in a hostile environment. “We’re talking about an autonomous boat, that goes out to sea and does exploratory voyages. “
Victorien Erussard : “I miss ocean racing”
For Victorien Erussard, these encounters sometimes take a rather nostalgic turn. Victorien, who chose the sea as a young child, can’t help but be a bit envious when he looks at his former partner’s new over-powerful double-outrigger.
“I tell everyone that I don’t miss ocean racing… but, to be honest, I really do miss it, confides Energy Observer’s founder and captain. They’re exhilarating vessels. Energy Observer doesn’t move at high speeds, but everything we do is absolutely inspiring and for the common good. That makes up for the lack of competition. I’m living the race through Thibault, but I did take the opportunity to raise my hand and ask Thibault to give me spot on board for the next Quebec-Saint-Malo. ”
But the two projects could cross paths soon. At least regarding energy management, an issue the two boats share. Hydrogen fuels cells, that have capacities vastly superior to the current ethanol fuel cells, could make their appearance in the world of ocean racing soon.