Interview Louis Balcaen

Interview Louis Balcaen

“Annalisa allows you to make data-based decisions

without having to be an IT expert”


Two-time Volvo Ocean Race participant Louis Balcaen (BEL) has used the annalisa software since about one and a half year. As he is a professional sailor, we were curious about his experiences, so we asked him a few questions:
 

 

In which sailing projects are you involved at the moment?

“After having done two Volvo Ocean Races, I took a small step back from the professional sailing circuit. At the time, my focus is also partly on the family business activities. Next year, I will participate in two super yacht events, two events with the VO70 and four RORC races.”

 

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Does another Ocean Race appeal to you as a first-time father?

“It is often said that once you have the VOR virus in your blood, it is hard to get rid of it. I am afraid that the same is true for me. I would not do it again in the VO65, but I would consider a project in the new Open 60 class. However, due to the crew limitations, I fear that there won’t be many opportunities.”

 

What is your experience with annalisa?

“Annalisa makes performance software accessible in an intuitive way and is easy to use by both the novice and the experienced navigator. For inshore races annalisa is an excellent tool that gives you direct input and increases the quality of decisions on board. Refining the polars, setting up the sailcross-over chart, determining laylines and distance to the starting line are our most frequently used annalisa features. Unlike the more extensive offshore routing/performance software, annalisa is easy to use because of the user-friendly app and the smooth feedback loop. After the race, you can give the entire team access to the performance report via the annalisa website or app, which is useful for quick debriefing and receiving feedback from the wider team. It is also important to note that the developers themselves are experienced sailors and speak the same language as the competitive sailor, making the application ever better and more efficient.”

 

What was the decisive reason for you to choose annalisa?

“The use of data is on the rise in the sailing sport and the complexity is sometimes frightening. Annalisa enables you to make data-based decisions without having to be an IT expert.”

 

What do you think is the biggest advantage of annalisa?

“Mainly the smooth integration on board, the ease of use of the app on the iPad and the support we received from Gert [van der Heijden] during the initial phase.”

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