IMOCA Globe Series17th
Points63 pts
Age50 (12/28/72)
Top performanceWinner of the Vendée Globe 2020-21
Joined Imoca on2008
TeamEquipe Voile Maître CoQ
CommitmentAssociation ECHO-MER


At the age of 48, Yannick Bestaven became the winner of the Vendée Globe 2020-21. An experienced figure in ocean racing, he is recognized by his peers and has a complete oceanic record of achievements.

Yannick was born in Saint Nazaire, then spent his childhood in Arcachon. He is initiated to sailing from a very young age. Hardly finished his engineering studies, Yannick is interested in competition and more particularly in ocean racing. It was during a decisive meeting with the sailor Yves Parlier in 2000, that Yannick launched himself into transoceanic competition by entering the 2001 mini-transat (6.50m monohull) which he won without leaving any chance to the other competitors.

In 2007, Yannick launched, as a precursor and out of personal conviction, the project to sail around the world in a race using only renewable energies (sun, wind, water....) to produce the electricity necessary for the boat's proper operation.

In 2008, Yannick took the start of the Vendée Globe on the former Aquitaine Innovations belonging to Yves Parlier. Keen to reduce the weight of his boat to improve performance, he had the idea of substituting the 300 litres of fuel on the boat for a device to produce electricity aboard. He installed a reliable, light and eco-friendly hydrogenerator.

In 2009, Yannick created the Sarl (LLC) WATT & SEA, which designs, develops, manufactures and distributes hydrogenerators.

In 2010, the hydrogenerators graced several international boat shows: Grand Pavois in La Rochelle (France), METS in Amsterdam (Holland), Nautic de Paris (France). They proved to be a big hit.

Yannick has been involved in a series of double-handed Class40 projects, until he launched his IMOCA campaign again in 2018, ten years after his first Vendée Globe campaign. Accompanied by Maître CoQ, the skipper from La Rochelle is taking part in all the solo races, but also in double-handed races with Roland Jourdain. On November 8, 2021, he lined up at the start of the famous solo round-the-world race, which he won after 80 days of racing and following the rescue of Kevin Escoffier.In the summer of 2022, Yannick launched his new IMOCA, a Verdier design, sistership of 11th Hour Racing Team-Mālama, with which he participated in the Route du Rhum a few months later and finished 19th. At the beginning of 2023, the Maître CoQ team left to train in Cascais, Portugal, in order to gain experience on this latest generation foiler.

Yannick Bestaven, injured, will not race the first race of the season, but will line up at the end of the year, with Julien Pulvé, at the start of the Transat Jacques Vabre.

Sailing Highlights

2023: Défi Azimut-Lorient Agglomération - 15th
Rolex Fastnet Race - 8th
Route du Rhum - 19th
Transat Jacques Vabre - 9th
Winner of the Vendée Globe (80d 03h 44m 46s - 10:15 of bonification)
Vendée-Arctique-Les Sables d'Olonne - 6th

2019: Défi Azimut - 4th
Rolex Fastnet Race - 6th
Bermudes 1000 Race - 2nd
2018: Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe - Retired
2017: Transat Jacques Vabre - 5th IMOCA
2015: Transat Jacques Vabre - Winner Class40
2015: Les Sables- Horta - Les Sables - Winner Class40 
2015: Normandy Channel Race - 2nd Class40
2014: Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe - 7th Class40
2013: Transat Jacques Vabre - 4th Class40 
2011: Transat Jacques Vabre - Winner Class40 
2010: Transat AG2R - 11th
2008-09: Vendée Globe - Retired
2008: Transat Quebec - Saint-Malo - 2nd
2001: Transat 6.50 - Winner


Sail numberFRA 17
ArchitectGuillaume Verdier
Construction2022, CDK Technologies
Former names
Length18,28 m
Draught4,5 m
Mast height29 m
Mast typeWing mast
Sail area max.


© Bernard Le Bars/Alea
© Bernard Le Bars/Alea