IMOCA Globe Series57th
Points63 pts
Age51 (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, with a shoulder injury, will not be taking part in the first race of the season, the Guyader Bermuda 1000 Race. He took part in the other races of the season with Julien Pulvé, notably the Transat Jacques Vabre 2023, which they were forced to stop due to a torn mainsail and a broken structural bulkhead. But he will be lining up at the end of the year, with Julien Pulvé, at the start of the Transat Jacques Vabre.

Sailing Highlights

2023 : Transat Jacques Vabre - Abandon
2023 : Défi Azimut-Lorient Agglomération - 15th
2023 : Rolex Fastnet Race - 8th
2022 : Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe - 19th
2021 : Transat Jacques Vabre - 9th
2021 : Rolex Fastnet Race - DNS - Collision before the start
2020-2021 : Vendée Globe - Winner
2020 : Vendée Arctique - 6th
2019 : Transat Jacques Vabre - 11th
2019 : Défi Azimut-Lorient Agglomération - 4th
2019 : Rolex Fastnet Race - 6th
2019 : Guyader Bermudes 1000 Race - 2nd
2018 : Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe - Abandon le 9/11
2017 : Transat Jacques Vabre - 5th
2008-2009 : Vendée Globe - Abandon le 11/11/08
Other highlights

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: Mini Transat 6.50 - Winner


Sail numberFRA 17
ArchitectGuillaume Verdier
Construction2022, CDK Technologies
Length18,28 m
Draught4,5 m
Mast height29 m
Mast typeWing mast
Sail area max.
© Bernard Le Bars/Alea
© Bernard Le Bars/Alea
© ean-Marie LIOT / Defi Azimut Lorient Agglomération