Rumblings of commercial discontent in Les Sables shot down

The headline in local newspaper Les Sables on 6 November reads ‘When the mustard gets up your nose: Don’t have a go at the Vendée Globe’.

Restauranteur Marc Berriau (left) and café owner Bernard Gruzon have mounted a stout defence against criticisms from local businesses that they’re not getting a big enough piece of the Vendée Globe pie.

‘Some local businesses have complained of a gloomy atmosphere and slim pickings since the Vendée Globe village opened,’ said Gruzon. ‘The benefits of the Vendée Globe are huge, for sailing and for the economy. It’s shameful to hear these negative opinions from people who aren’t grateful to the Conseil general for keeping this race.’

‘I’ve welcomed the teams in my restaurant for 12 years,’ said Berriau. ‘It’s hard work but it’s put us in a strong position. I’m not in competition with the Vendée Globe village restaurant because I can’t provide 2,600 meals a day.’

Gruzon concluded ‘We’re proud and pleased to be part of this event and everyone knows that the financial benefits are, and will be, significant for the local economy.’