Oakcliff Saplings with Ryan Breymaier and Jean-Pierre Dick

Oakcliff Saplings with Ryan Breymaier and Jean-Pierre Dick at North Cove Marina in New York, NY

May 30, 2014 – Oyster Bay, NY – Our Saplings went on an exciting once in a lifetime field trip to visit two popular offshore racing boats, Banque Populaire VII and Hugo Boss, on Wednesday afternoon in Brooklyn, NY and New York, NY.

The team of seven, first visited Banque Populaire VII, a 31.50 meter (about 103 feet) Trimaran, and had a discussion with Pierre-Yves Moreau, the rigger of Banque Populaire VII, in Brooklyn, NY. Moreau discussed the history of Banque Populaire VII, Armel Le Cléac’h’s plans for the future, and the new technology advancements that the crew has developed for the boat.

Banque Populaire VII was originally called Groupama 3. However, Armel Le Cléac’h needed to reconstruct the boat to meet his single-handed requirements. Soon after, Groupama 3 became Banque Populaire VII, the maxi solo trimaran.

This year, Le Cléac’h plans on setting a new single-handed transatlantic record. Le Cléac’h arrived in New York on Friday May 23rd after leaving France on May 15th. Le Cléac’h made the cross Atlantic journey with five other crewmembers from Banque Populaire V.

Banque Populaire

A few of the Saplings aboard Banque Populaire VII in Brooklyn, NY

After the Moreau discussed Banque Populaire VII’s history, the Saplings boarded the vessel for a tour. During the tour, the Saplings were extensively shown the exterior and interior of the boat; they were amazed by the new technologies the Banque Populaire VII crew had created.

One system that the Saplings found fascinating is the Upside Up cleat system. The Upside Up system allows for the jib to be depowered through sensors within the cleat system. When the trimaran becomes too heeled over, the sensors release 1 meter of the sheet in order to depower the jib.

After the tour, Moreau answered any questions that the Saplings had. To find out more information about the Banque Populaire VII team, please visit their website at

Once their visit with Banque Populaire VII was completed, the Saplings headed over to North Cove Marina to tour Hugo Boss, an IMOCA 60 monohull, with Ryan Breymaier. For Breymaier, this tour was a huge pleasure; he had never shown an IMOCA 60 on United States soil before and could share the experience with younger offshore sailors. Breymaier said, ” It was great to meet the guys and awesome to finally have the opportunity to show the boat to budding US ocean racers.”

After the tour, the Saplings got the chance to sit down and have a discussion with Breymaier in Hugo Boss. Breymaier discussed how hard it has been to sail in the IMOCA 60 class as an American and offered his professional advice to our Saplings.

Breymaier has faced several challenges in the IMOCA 60 class in the United States due to its large popularity in the European market. Up until recently, the IMOCA 60 class had little recognition within the U.S.

One piece of advice that Breymaier has for the Saplings is to choose to specialization in within sailing. This specialization should exist without any actual sailing, and it can consist of boat management, maintenance, tactics, and other important skills.

Ryan Breymaier talks about Hugo Boss with our Saplings

Ryan Breymaier talks about Hugo Boss with our Saplings at North Cove Marina in New York, NY

Breymaier only started offshore sailing during college at St. Mary’s College of Maryland in St. Mary’s City, MD. From this experience, he learned the importance of developing young sailors and has made evolving younger sailors a priority in his career.

Breymaier is now preparing for the IMOCA Ocean Masters race that begins on Sunday in New York and head for Barcelona as their final destination. On Thursday, Hugo Boss prepared for the race along with four other IMOCA 60s in the Hugo Boss Watches Charity Race where the winning boat received $10,000 to the charity of their choice. The Hugo Boss crew continued their philanthropic efforts after their win on Thursday in the race by donating their winnings to Angel Flight.

While at North Cove Marina, the Saplings also got a chance to take a picture with Jean-Pierre Dick, the former skipper of Hugo Boss, and see other prominent sailors.

If you want to find out more information on Ryan Breymaier, please visit his website

Overall, this was an enjoyable and invaluable experience for our Saplings. For them, it was a chance to see two ways they can experience sailing on a professional level through other sailing professionals in the business, and they also learned about new advancements and advice that they bring back and use during their sailing at Oakcliff.

Throughout the summer, our Saplings get to have other experiences similar to this in addition to gaining valuable sailing experience both on and off the water. The goal of the Sapling program is to fully prepare sailors to enter the world of professional sailing.

If you or someone you know may be interested in the Sapling programs, please contact Oakcliff at 516-802-0368 or visit our website