In 2007, the ex-Groupe Bel is one of the latest creations by VPLP-Verdier. Though the hull is that of Safran, she is equipped with a wing mast and two steering wheels.
Designed for Kito de Pavant in preparation for the Vendée Globe, she finishes 6th in the Transat Jacques Vabre (with Seb Col), but further down the track she dismasts in the Bay of Biscay. Up and running again, 2009 is an opportunity to beat the Trans-Mediterranean record (1d 20h 20’) before the Transat Jacques Vabre with François Gabart (2nd). However, the Route du Rhum 2010 campaign comes to an end following a faulty keel pin, as is the case in the Barcelona World Race (with Seb Audigane). Kito de Pavant amasses a series of technical issues (dismasting, then collision), hampering the performance of this IMOCA, which beats the solo Trans-Mediterranean record (1d 02h 53’) in 2013 prior to being sold to Imagine and taking part in the Route du Rhum with Armel Tripon (4th). Next, Thomas Ruyant takes the helm for the Transat Jacques Vabre 2015 with Adrien Hardy (4th) before a Vendée Globe that ultimately comes to a halt in New Zealand after colliding with a UFO. Bought up by Enda O’Coineen and repaired in Christchurch, the ex-Souffle du Nord arrives in Les Sables d’Olonne and is promptly sold to Maxime Sorel in late 2018, VandB-Mayenne going on to compete in the Bermudes 1000 Race (5th), then the Transat Jacques Vabre with Guillaume Le Brec (16th).