1984 OBSERVER / EUROPE 1 STAR
Ninety-one boats started and in the early stages of the race it was two catamarans of Patrick Morvan (Jet Services) and Gilles Gahinet (33 Export) that dominated until they were forced to retire through damage to the hull and mast problems, respectively.
But it was the capsizing of Philippe Jeantot (Credit Agricole) in the middle of the Atlantic that was the talk of the town posing a problem at the finish. Philippe Poupon (Fleury Michon) was first to finish in Newport in a record 16 days, 11 hours and 55 minutes (which was increased by 30 minutes for his start line penalty), but Yvon Fauconnier (Umupro Jardin) was declared the winner after standing-by Jeantot for 16 hours. His finish time of 16 days, 22 hours and 25 minutes were reduced by 16 hours to 16 days, 6 hours and 25 minutes. Philippe Poupon on hearing the news during the middle of his victory press conference, could not disguise his immense disappointment and broke down in tears. At the prize giving Fauconnier received the overall winner prize and Pupon was awarded a special Line Honours prize.
Out of the top 10 finishers only two skippers were not French and only the 10th placed boat was not a multihull. All the top 10 skippers had completed the course in under 17 days.
The French were back and the race was fast becoming a transatlantic sprint.
Click here for full results of the 1984 OSTAR.