Five months after nearly severing his foot in a training accident Franck Cammas will rejoin Groupama Team France at next month’s Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series in New York.
Cammas fell overboard while sparring with seasoned King Edward VII Gold Cup campaigner Adam Minoprio in one of Team France’s foiling GC32 catamarans and was hit by the rudder at full speed, leaving his right foot partially severed.
Following an operation and intense rehabilitation, the distinguished offshore sailor and multihull specialist is now looking forward to racing again in the America’s Cup foiling catamarans.
“Racing in New York will punctuate five extremely intense months and a rehabilitation programme, which I’ve tried my best to control,” the Frenchman said.
“I focused on the positives the minute I learnt that my foot had been saved.
“From that point, I gave my all to my rehabilitation and the other team-related activities. I think this approach helped my recuperation.
“However, it’s important not to lose sight of the tough times where the pain really called for me to grit my teeth. I put myself in the red in a bid to recover as quickly as possible.
“When you’re aware that the group is in training and progressing and you can’t be part of all that it’s frustrating and inevitably led to tension at times.
“I had to get back to the top of my game, which took a great deal of effort and self-sacrifice.”
However, Cammas acknowledges that the psychological scars from the serious accident are still fresh.
“Today, I’m still cautious when it comes to jumping on the trampoline, but I’m more motivated than ever and I’m happy to be in a position to face up to the competition with a talented crew,” Cammas said. “I’ve missed the competition environment.”
Cammas thanked Minoprio, of New Zealand, for doing a good job at the helm of Team France in his absence at the previous World Series regatta in Oman.
“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Adam Minoprio, who fulfilled his role as replacement to perfection in Oman,” Cammas said. “It was a very positive experience for the whole team.”
Next month’s World Series regatta in New York will take place May 7-8.
The event is the first stage of competition for the 35th America’s Cup to be held in Bermuda in June 2017. Featuring all of the America’s Cup teams, the series is an opportunity to earn points that will count towards the America’s Cup qualifiers and play-offs, which will determine who competes against defender Oracle Team USA.
Emirates Team New Zealand are the World Series leaders.
This story appeared in the Royal Gazette on April 23rd, 2016.