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60 boats on the start line and a major new partner for the Transat Jacques Vabre Normandie Le Havre

by Soazig Guého 18 Sep 00:44 PDT 18-22 September 2019
2017 Transat Jacques Vabre start © Jean-Marie Liot

The 14th edition of the "Route du Café" - the world's longest and toughest two-handed transatlantic sailing race - will have 60 boats on the start line on October 27 and a major new title partner: the Région Normandie, organisers announced at the official launch on Tuesday, September 17, at the Eiffel Tower Theater in Paris.

A new partner, a new name

The Région Normandie (the administrative body promoting and developing the Normandy region), a partner of the race since 2017, is working alongside the two founding partners, Le Havre and Jacques Vabre, to develop this event, which has strong Normandy roots. With a financial commitment almost four times higher than in 2017, the Région is becoming a major partner of the event.

"The Région Normandie is really happy to be strengthening its support for this race, which contributes to the economic, touristic and sporting development of our region," Hervé Morin, chairman of the Région Normandie, said.

60 duos, 120 skippers

The 2019 edition is already shaping up to be historic. This is the first time since the creation of the "Route du Café" in 1993 that so many competitors have wanted to brave the Atlantic double-handed. There will be 60 duos from 10 nations, that is 120 sailors, spread across the three classes of boat - 27 Class40, 3 Multi 50 and 30 IMOCA - who will be on the start line in Le Havre on Sunday, October 27 and heading to Salvador de Bahia in Brazil. The list of entries for this long and challenging transatlantic race includes many potential winners and exceptional duos and skippers from all horizons: Swiss, German, Belgian, British, American, Irish, Finnish, Italian, Turkish and Japanese, not to mention the 12 new boats (6 Class40 and 6 IMOCA), who everyone will be keeping an eye on.

The Transat Jacques Vabre Normandy Le Havre remains the longest transatlantic race at 4,350 miles. It is a challenging route, fraught with meteorological pitfalls, which has become a much-anticipated fixture in the offshore racing calendar.

Competition, partnership, demanding, solidarity, patience - these, and so many more words will express the story of these sailors throughout their crossing.

Le Havre, a city in celebration

From the opening of the festival race village, on Friday, October 18 at 14:00 (local time), the public will be find the 60 boats in the Bassin Paul Vatine in Le Havre.

The Transat Jacques Vabre Normandy Le Havre is particularly highlighting sustainable development this year with engaging activities such as the Ocean as Common exhibition, the collaborative fresco of Teuthis that will be given to the UN to raise awareness about the safeguarding of the oceans, and the #NoPlasticChallenge - a challenge to reduce our plastic consumption.

Activities and shows will punctuate the 10 days of the village, culminating in a high point: the firework display on Saturday, October 26 at 20:00.

www.transatjacquesvabre.org/en

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