Out of 95 entries competing in past editions of the Transat Jacques Vabre only six mixed teams have been on the start line, and only since 1999 have any mixed teams at all competed.
Catherine CHABAUD and Laurent BARTISSOL and Yves PARLIER and Ellen MACARTHUR were the only two who competed in 1999, Ellen MACARTHUR then followed in 2001, competing with Frenchman Alain GAUTIER. Karine FAUCONNIER and Franck PROFFIT, Dominique WAVRE and Michele PARET and R LANGEVIN and Henriette LEMAY all competed as mixed crews in 2001. In the first edition of the race in 1993 one female skipper started but Marie SERGENT capsized and did not reach the finish.
Since 1999 there have only ever been three all-female teams - Emma RICHARDS and Miranda MERRON in 1999 and Emma RICHARDS and Mikki von KOSKULL and Miranda MERRON and Frederique BRULÉ in 2001.
For the 2003 race there are a record number of mixed teams including Nick Moloney and Samantha Davies on TEAM COWES... Ten in total across all 4 classes and no all-female teams. Favourites for podium finishes in both the monoulls and multihulls include mixed teams - Karine Fauconnier, Ellen MacArthur, Sam Davies, Isabelle Autissier are amongst them. This is some indication of how offshore female skippers are now competing on equal terms in the sport of offshore sailing.
Sam Davies commented on this statistic. "I guess in the past the majority of female sailors may not have done enough to be accepted in a mixed crew because there have been guys with greater experience but now that is changing through the advancement of all-female teams, like Maiden, that have gone out there and done the offshore miles or done it for themselves like Ellen and Isabelle Autissier.
For me, it is a progression from sailing with a mixed crew on Maiden II last year and seeing how successful that was - we set four world records. We had an incredible atmosphere on board and the crew totally accepted each other and the different abilities they bought on board. This was something I had not experienced before as often in the past I had either sailed with all-female crews or been the only girl amongst a male crew.
It is not just a male v female thing - every crew member accepts that you cannot be good at every job on the boat and the important thing is that the crew bring together the necessary skills to race at an optimum level.
It is really good for this sport and should continue to encourage more girls to enter into the sport and push to get on the boats and campaigns they want to."
List of 10 mixed team entries:
Alain Gautier/Ellen MacArthur - Foncia (60' multihull)
Karine Fauconnier/Damian Foxall - Sergio Tacchini (60' multihull)
Anne Caseneuve/Christophe Houdet - anne-caseneuve.com (50' multihull)
Emma Richards/Mike Sanderson - Pindar (60' monohull)
Dominique Wavre/Michelle Paret - name tbc (60' monohull)
Sébastien Josse/Isabelle Autissier - VMI (60' monohull)
Nick Moloney/Sam Davies - Team Cowes (60' monohull)
Roger Langevin/Henriette Lemay - Branec III (50' monohull)
Jean-Marie Bouchired/Marie Sergent - Défi Vendéen (50' monohull)
Luc Coquelin/Chantal Foligné - Top 50 Croisieres Sportives (50' monohull)