40 years in 2017, such an ANIVERSARY!
1977, October 8th in Penzance (England): 24 small 6.50meters long sailing boats are leaving the harbor solo handed. Destination Teneriffe where they’ll restart for a transatlantic race to Antigua West Indies.
They are called crazy but the mini-transat is born!
These are the years where offshore racing explodes, boat size (and budgets) are dramatically increasing, the “Route dub Rhum” will start next year. Bob Salmon, subject of her majesty, propose to simplify it all :
6.50 meters long for the boat, the Atlantic Ocean to cross for the solo sailor !
Amongst the 24 sailors heading on the starting line, Daniel Gilard Halvard Mabire, Bruno Peyron, Jean Luc Van Den Heede will later write main pages of the offshore racing.
In 1979, for the second edition,new boats are specially designed and built for this race : the Mini6.50 boat will now be the most innovative and creative class.
In1985, the minitransat start leaves the UK to settle in France. Brest, Concarneau, Douarnenez, La Rochelle for the starts, Madeira or Canary Islands for the stopovers, west Indies or Brazil for the finish,The Mini transat will alwways be renewed.
Each two years, more and more sailors plan to join the minitransat, In 2009They will be 89sailors leaving La Rochelle to reach Salvador de Bahia in Brazil.
After the 2013 & 2015 editions that started from Douarnenez to Guadeloupe, La Rochelle is proud to host the two next events , leading 84 solo sailors from about 15 countries to Le Marin Martinique.