An indisputable winner – King of the Globe, Yannick Bestaven is in the vein of great sailors

The 48-year-old Rochelais capped Charlie Dalin in the bonus game. But his victory, deserved, consecrates an endearing and tenacious man. Portrait of a skipper who has changed dimension.

Yannick Bestaven, a face unknown to the general public but eyes that sparkle with happiness on the pontoon of Sables-d’Olonne.

Jean-Guy Python

There are stars that shine more than others in the Vendée night. Two nuggets, blue. The same blue that we sometimes find off the coast of Brazil, when the ocean becomes a postcard. Yet it is there, in this dream setting, that he almost lost everything. Under the dodger, he remained planted like a duck fearing the firecracker of a furious hunter. Motionless, Yannick Bestaven took command on the 16th December and led the fleet for 26 days. He had packed himself just after crossing Cape Horn before falling into a bubble near Cape Frio. Forty eight hours to see his lead (nearly 1000 km) melt as fast as the ice capaire. Two days to ruminate. «When I was in front of Brazil losing my 400 miles lead, I couldn’t believe it at all», admits the Rochelais. But the time that stops is also the time that allows us to remember who we are. Where we come from. Why are we here. To bounce back better?

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