Passionate about offshore sailing, trained for the merchant navy and now entirely devoted to the first hydrogen vessel around the world, Victorien Erussard is the Energy Observer’s Captain and Founder. Discover his exceptional career.
Victorien was born in Saint-Malo, the year after the first Route du Rhum. 26 years later, he was on the starting line of the legendary race aboard the trimaran Laiterie de Saint Malo. It was his very first solo ocean race, aboard an old 60 feet trimaran that he had updated himself with great willpower and a grinder… Although he had never spent a single night at sea before this crossing, he finished on the podium.
In parallel to building a track record which pushed him among the elites of his field, Victorien deepened his knowledge of the sea by pursuing his studies as a multitask officer in the merchant navy.
Young European Champion in Hobie Cat 16 in 1999, winner of the “Raid des Corsaires” in F18 and of the Catagolfe in 2004, its a few years later, in 2007, that he raced in his first Transat Jacques Vabre, alongside Frédéric Dahirel, sixteen years his elder, and finished second.
2007, it’s also his first encounter with Nicolas Hulot. While he was walking in the streets of Saint-Lunaire, in France, he saw him in the driver’s seat of his car. Such as Nicolas Hulot explains, He just knocked on the window to ask myself if he could bother me a few minutes… From that day, he never stopped!” Ever since, Nicolas sponsors all its vessels, follows its career, but also creates the wish to Victorien to engage itself.
Victorien has the freshness and spontaneity of a teenager, combined with the insight of a man of experience. What surprised me, the first time I met him, was that he didn’t seem to fear anything.
Starting in 2011, Victorien decided to use his competitive appetite towards the fight against multiple sclerosis. For that project, he built from scratch the “Défi Voile Solidaires en Peloton” in favor of the ARSEP foundation with his friend Thibaut Vauchel-Camus. This adventure led them to the Class40 championship title and to a fourth place in his fourth Transat Jacques Vabre in 2015.
His desire to serve a cause finally prevailed over the thrill of the competition. Hence the reason he agreed, in 2013, to join Frédéric Dahirel in the construction of a solar-powered catamaran. Thanks to a perfect blend of spontaneity and experience, he convinced AccorHotels and Thélem assurances to finance the launch of the first experimental and self-sufficient energy vessel powered by a complete hydrogen production chain coupled to renewable energies, today known as Energy Observer.
· 10 years as on offshore racer
· 1 Route du Rhum
· 4 Transat Jacques Vabre
· 3 podiums over 6 transatlantic races
· 3 F-18 French championships titles
· 2 Transat Quebec-Saint-Malo… one without rudder
· 1 year expedition in the South Pole
· 80 partners reunited around the sailing challenge, Défi Voile Solidaires En Peloton
· 80 partenaires réunis autour du Défi Voile Solidaires En Peloton