Renovation of Damien

August 1, 2012



Damien starts. 2012.

• A restore operation Damien officially launched at Grand Bulwark
• Damien, exhibited in the state, the Grand Bulwark
• Open to all donation
• A common desire to see Damien navigate.

Fil info : The Grand Pavois International afloat boat show will be held from 19 to September 24, 2012 at the Port des Minimes in La Rochelle. More than 850 exhibitors are expected on 100,000 m2 of exhibition space. 300 boats will be exhibited afloat over 750 presentations at the show. Thematic areas are once again available to all visitors and Brazil will be the guest of honor at the 40th country. Reference for enthusiasts, the Grand Pavois offers a unique opportunity to try the boats at sea before purchasing. The Grand Pavois is in the top 5 international boat show afloat.

Let it be said: there is work to do! But what incredible challenge and what bet to say that Wednesday, September 19, 2012 will begin the 40th Grand Pavois, a great adventure: the review navigate Damien. An adventure that has nothing in common with that started in May 1969 by two men, Gerard and Jerome Poncet Janichon who take off La Rochelle aboard a boat that will become legend. Five years of sailing and 55,000 miles traveled, five years of sailing and the birth of a true philosophy facing the sea, nature, effort and personal achievement. Back …

Gérard Janichon and Jérôme Poncet, then students dream of a round the world sailing. 1965 marks the beginning of the project. « Our dream was to leave to tour the world on a yacht 10 meters specially designed, and a crew of three boys of the same youth. Young and determined we were. We did not have a penny, I had never set foot on a sailboat and, what is more, it is in Grenoble we spent hours on the nose blue globes. « These are the words of Gerard Janichon from the book, a true literary success today, » Damien around the world. « 

There is 39 years old…
They take off May 25, 1969 in La Rochelle on a boat out of cardboard drawing of a British architect, Robert Tucker. Going back to Spitsbergen in the Svalbard archipelago, they sail in the ice, joining Greenland then down the American coast to the West Indies. They run along the east coast of South America, reach Cape Horn sailing March 4, 1971, after ascending the Amazon over 2 000 kilometers. They will visit the sub-Antarctic Islands, South Georgia, Crozet, Kerguelen, Heard, Macquarie, join Tasmania, Australia, New Caledonia before crossing the Pacific against all winds and rally Tahiti. From there, they go down to Antarctica, berthed in the Arctic Circle, before returning to the South Shetland, South Georgia, Argentina and Brazil. A myth is born!

September 22, 1973, pushed by a breeze from the west, Damien slips between the two towers of La Rochelle. A guard of honor is improvised. Enthusiasts, photographers, journalists are there. Jérôme Poncet even has his camera in hand to capture it back. Their world tour is finally over, 55,000 miles were swallowed and Damien slips into stride first Grand Bulwark, which then takes the 21au 24 September 1973 at the Port des Minimes. Gerard and Jerome are surrounded solicited commended for this achievement. A book in three volumes born this initiatory journey around the globe « Damien: Spitsbergen to Cape Horn » that mark the lives and minds of many browsers and future browsers circumnavigators future! Damien legend is born … « Leaving, will leave all barely out of adolescence, it was deliberately give a direction (a direction too) in his life, accept being ostracized, outcast for some, like the other  » Gérard Janichon.

Facing the Grand Pavois in 1973 … and 2012!
June 2012, a conversation begins in the offices of the organization of the Grand Bulwark. Where is Damien? Can you find it? In what state is it? And if we take the challenge to do it again navigate to the image of Joshua Moitessier, now present in the Pertuis La Rochelle? The quest begins … The boat is located: it is not far, it is the Site of the old port of La Rochelle, which keeps him alive. Who owns it? Hubert de Chevigny is the current owner of the boat. We share with him by mail, it is in Canada. He agrees, want to review the sail boat, who had been saved from certain death by the finding in a shed in northern France. Damien is already listed building, an important point. Immediately, enthusiasm and commitment are clearly expressed. DRAC (Ministry of Culture) provides us with a full support behind this project. Friends of the Maritime Museum of La Rochelle (AMMLR) are requested to ensure the associative part and post-restoration Damien management, they are enthusiastic and outgoing to the image they have built around Joshua Moitessier the Museum Maritime La Rochelle and sailing all year round, thanks to them. Finally, the keystone of the whole: Gérard Janichon agrees to the conditions of the project to follow the restoration of Damien to see the boat sail and Damien hosts many enthusiasts for this new life. Great Bulwark, at the initiative of this great adventure, exhibiting Damien and monitor the project involved: The idea is to navigate Damien reviewed within three years! Damien will be exhibited at the Grand Pavois every year to allow each and everyone to follow the evolution of the restoration. A true story of passion takes shape …

True restoration work
Damien is ill, sick … In summary, the boat is in bad shape. Also, it is in this state that will be presented at the Grand Pavois in Wood Village. No embellishment last minute, no « fig leaf » Damien will be presented in its current state to all of those he did dream. While some partners such as DRAC have already committed to participate in the restoration must today seek additional aid to private partners, but also launch an inclusive donation. Media side, no doubt that this project should have the response it deserves. The Grand Pavois engages therein!

Donation launched the Great Bulwark
If the boat will be exhibited at the Grand Pavois, it is also possible to as many people to participate and contribute to the restoration of Damien. The Friends of the Maritime Museum of La Rochelle collect donations that will be used to « slow » reconstruction of the legendary ship. Together « Save Damien!  »

Damien in few numbers is:
• Plan: Robert Tucker (GB)
• Construction: Construction Nautic Saintonge (Mr. Yves Desbordes) Saujon (17) 1967-1968
• Length: 10.10 m
• Width: 3.08 m
• Displacement: 5 tons
• Shell: Molded wood, mahogany 4-ply 5mm.
• Shins, keel, stern, lengthens vault mahogany glulam
• Varangues: mahogany and laminated
• Smooth and greenhouses: pinewood
• Deck: mahogany and marine CP 27 mm
• Facilities: Nirvana 10.40 meters mast on deck, Sarma rigging, sails Herve Goiot fittings, motor Couach BD2 15ch gas tank 10 liters

Photo credit: Damien navigation / Personal Collection Gerard Janichon – Damien starts / JMCA Great Bulwark

To remember…
Name : The Grand Pavois
Place: Port des Minimes in La Rochelle
Dates: Wednesday 19 to Monday, September 24, 2012 from 10 to 19 hours
Exhibitors: 850 exhibitors from 38 countries on 100,000 m2 of exhibition
Exposed boats: More boats 750 with 300 afloat
Guest of Honour: Brazil
Specifics: Villages and themed areas, sea trials, new in world premiere …
The number of visitors: 100,000 visitors
Free pictures in high definition: Press

Tel: +33 5 46 44 46 39 / Fax: +33 5 46 45 32 24

Pierrick Garenne / – Véronique LARGEAU / / Floriane BOUILLARD / fbouillard @ grand bulwark. com

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