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Transat Jacques Vabre, what's the stake for the Vendée Globe?

Four years after the very first edition of the Vendée Globe in 1989, the first Transat Jacques Vabre set off from Le Havre. While the solo, non-stop, non-assisted round the world race is preparing to celebrate its 10th edition in 2024, the transatlantic race is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. 40 IMOCA boats will be at the start, representing 80 skippers, all dreaming of the Vendée Globe in the more or less distant future...


This year, 40 duos will set off from Le Havre on 29 October bound for Martinique. But their rest in the West Indies will be short-lived: as soon as they arrive, they'll have to get back into 'race mode', this time solo. They will be lining up at the start of the Retour à la Base, the final qualifying race for the 2022-2023 period, on 26 November in Fort-de-France. As a reminder, the candidates for the 2024 Vendée Globe must take the start of two qualifying races (on the boat on which they will be racing around the world), one in the 2022-2023 period and one in 2024. They must finish at least one of them in a time no more than one and a half times faster than the winner's time.

Retour à la Base 

The Return to Base is particularly important for those who have not raced in either the Vendée Arctique - Les Sables d'Olonne or the Route du Rhum in 2022. Among them are the skippers of the new IMOCA boats due to be launched in 2023, namely Charlie Dalin on MACIF - Santé Prévoyance, Thomas Ruyant on For People, Yoann Richomme on Paprec Arkéa and Éric Bellion on Stand as One. The same goes for Sébastien Simon, who is taking part in his very first race on his Groupe Dubreuil boat in the Transat Jacques Vabre.

Clarisse Crémer (L'Occitane en Provence), Violette Dorange (DeVenir) Sam Goodchild (For the Planet) will also begin their qualification process during the Return to Base.

Bien qu’ayant validé la Vendée Arctique – Les Sables d’Olonne, les skippers Nicolas Lunven (Holcim – PRB) et Fabrice Amédéo (Nexans - Arts & Fenêtres) doivent eux aussi nécessairement prendre le départ de cette course, car ils ont tous deux changé de bateau en 2023.

Jean Le Cam (Tout Commence en Finistère - Armor Lux), Phil Sharp (OceansLab - Cleantech Accelerator) and Nicolas Lunven (Holcim - PRB) will not be lining up at the start of the Transat Jacques Vabre, but will make a delivery trip to Martinique to take the start of the Retour à la Base on their new IMOCA boats.

It should be noted that the Vendée Globe organisers have stipulated in their regulations that they may grant an exemption to this qualification rule and accept that the start of the Transat Jacques Vabre 2023 may replace the start of the Return to Base in the event of major damage during the Transat Jacques Vabre making it impossible for the skipper/boat pairing to take part in the Retour  à la Base.

Beyond the stakes of qualifying for the Vendée Globe, all the skippers will be keen to shine in this great transatlantic race, the longest two-handed race. They will be logging precious miles on this race, with a view to a possible selection. As this is a two-handed race, each skipper will log half the miles of the course, a total of 2700 precious miles.

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