Billy Besson was born in Polynesia where multihulls are central to the sailing culture. A child of Tahiti, he lived there with his family and learned to sail there. Besson has devoted the majority of his career to multihulls and is famed for his instinct, which will be crucial on board the F50.
World Champion on the Dart 18 and F18, Besson has also amassed four world championship titles in the Nacra 17, forming a dynamic duo with Marie Riou. The skipper’s serious back injury deprived the pair of their chance to vie for the Olympic title in Rio 2016 but, with unfinished business, the pair are back campaigning for Tokyo 2020.
Last year, whilst Riou was taking part in Volvo Ocean Race, Besson was discovering offshore sailing for himself competing with two of France’s most prestigious maxi-trimaran campaigns.
His new goal is to hit the 50-knot barrier on the F50. In his spare time, he enjoys surfing, wake surf and mountain biking.
“We have one objective: to go fast whilst ensuring everyone is safe.”