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Transat Jacques Vabres 2023

© Jean-Marie Liot

Andreas boards Fabrice Amedeo for the Transat Jacques Vabre on the Imoca Nexans – Art et Fenêtres.

For his return to the open sea and to the competitions, the skipper Nexans – Art et Fenêtres has chosen to take on board a German co-skipper. Goal: a nice double hand race
to contest, to revive oceanographic measurement campaigns on the high seas, and to symbolize the Franco-German friendship that is close to the hearts of several project partners.

A year after the Route du Rhum, Fabrice Amedeo will be back on the open sea for the Transat Jacques Vabre. An important race that he will compete with a German sailor: Andreas Baden. The two sailors will train as much as possible from August to make the new IMOCA Nexans – Art et Fenêtres, recently launched, more reliable and to prepare in the best possible way for the Transat Jacques Vabre. The schedule includes a qualifier at the end of August that will take them to the mythical Fastnet Rock, the Azimuth Challenge in September, and the transatlantic doublehanded race that starts in Le Havre on October 29.

For Fabrice’s return to the open sea and his new team of two, the ambitions are measured: “The
Gap between the new boats and the rest of the fleet is widening,” comments Fabrice. On the other hand, my priority is to qualify for the Vendée Globe, which means arriving in Martinique and getting back to the basics: Have fun, surpass myself and have a nice adventure with Andreas, conduct measurement campaigns and raise awareness for ocean conservation.”

“I am very happy to join the project of Fabrice, whose DNA is in line with my values
matches,” says Andreas. “Like Fabrice, I also have a very close relationship with nature. I studied agriculture and environmental science with a focus on environmental protection. Today, in addition to sailing, I am involved in consulting in the field of sustainable energy and energy transformation. I think this is an important issue for Fabrice and his partners, who are planning to sail around the world without relying on fossil fuels. I am looking forward to the start of this great transatlantic regatta ahead. I am delighted to join Fabrice in reporting on our adventures on the high seas and to deliver this beautiful message together for the energy and climate transition and the protection of our oceans, both of which are very close to my heart.” The 34-year-old skipper comes from Bonn and has been sailing since he was a teenager. After school, he moved to Kiel to have the opportunity to pursue his passion for sailing. Most recently, he successfully sailed to third place as navigator with the Berlin Rafale team in the RORC Transatlantic Regatta in January.

Andreas, like Fabrice, is also a passionate sailor: “As soon as I’m on the water, I really feel like I’m immersed in another universe. I love being in the middle of nature, in this raw element, the vastness of the sea. You are confronted with yourself, you have to deal with what you are offered and find your balance. These are emotionally charged moments that shape many unforgettable memories and bring one back to the basics.”

The choice of a German co-skipper on board Nexans – Art et Fenêtres is no coincidence. Several of the project’s partners, notably Nexans and Guillin, are international corporations. It’s also a nod to partner Hager Group, which historically has always had one foot in France and one in Germany. This collaboration, in the form of a symbol of Franco-German friendship, will also give the group the opportunity to better spread the messages of the Ocean Calling project in Germany.

For Andreas, joining forces with Fabrice for Transat Jacques Vabres is the logical next step. He has continuously pursued his way into offshore sailing and successfully participated in many national and international regattas. In particular, he has had his eye on the French offshore scene for quite some time. The challenge to concentrate on the essentials, to deal with all the challenges that arise in the race with minimal equipment on board, especially in doublehanded mode, is what makes it so appealing. In particular, the topic of sustainability and energy transition is in Andreas’ DNA, so that linking the two together, as in Fabrice’s project, represents an optimal symbiosis for Andreas.

“I am very happy to have Andreas, a German sailor, on board for the Transat Jacques Vabre,” explains Fabrice. We want to take our sports and citizenship project beyond the borders of France to reach a wider community and connect with our partners, many of whom are based around the world. It’s quite natural that I chose a German co-skipper because I really appreciate this country and culture and they are becoming more and more interested in ocean racing thanks to Boris Herrmann’s achievements.”