The experienced Olivier Herlédant returns to the France SailGP Team in Season 2 – alongside fellow grinders Devan Le Bhihan and Timothé Lapauw – in what is shaping up to be a strength for the squad in the 2020 campaign.
Herlédant got his start in sailing much later than most of his fellow SailGP athletes, picking up the sport while he was at university in Concarneu, Brittany. With a physique mirroring an American football player, he was soon noticed on the world stage and called up to the World Match Racing Tour.
The Douarnenez native found himself in the thick of medal contention during the 2010 ISAF Match Racing World Championship as a member of French M.R. Team, falling just short of British entry TEAMORIGIN helmed by fellow SailGP competitor Ben Ainslie, to take home the silver medal.
Since then, Herlédant competed in two America’s Cup campaigns, most recently alongside his current SailGP teammates Devan le Bihan and Matthieu Vandame with Groupama Team France representing Yacht Club de France in the 2017 edition of the competition.
Herlédant has a PhD in fluid dynamics and an engineering degree in naval hydrodynamics. He has also installed a grinder in his home to help hone his skills.
He and his wife, Armelle, have two children and he’s now stepping into a new role in the sport – Opti dad. His oldest daughter started racing the small dinghies last year, and he's proud to cheer her on as she follows in his footsteps. When he’s not spending time with his family, he enjoys fishing and is an avid gardner, gorwing fruit tres in his backyard.