Québec City, April 2012 — Every four years since 1984, professional ocean racers taking part in the Transat Québec Saint-Malo have set sail from Québec City with one single goal—to navigate their way along the St. Lawrence River and cross the Atlantic Ocean in record time! On July 22 nearly 25 of the world’s best crews will gather in Québec City, ready to take on the 8th edition of this colossal challenge in an ocean race held to mark Jacques Cartier’s first crossing in 1534 from his home town of Saint-Malo to the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
A unique event
Recognized as a “classic” by the International Sailing Federation (ISAF), the Transat Québec Saint-Malo is the world’s oldest continuous west-to-east offshore crewed race. Navigating the St. Lawrence is a major challenge in itself, and sailing it can require all manner of tactics and strategies. As well as spotlighting the mighty river, the Transat is also a great showcase for the ports of Québec City and Saint-Malo.
The race covers 2,897 nautical miles (5,365 km) and this year will include a program of activities in Québec City’s Old Port July 14 to 22 and in Saint-Malo July 21 to August 5. Skippers will once again have the opportunity to race one of the greatest routes from the heroic history of sailing. And it all starts on a 376 nautical mile (696 km) stretch of the St. Lawrence, marked out by five buoys.
Different boat classes
True to form, the 2012 edition of the Transat has an Open formula allowing several types of racing yachts to compete. Monohulls and multihulls will be crossing the starting line in Québec City before crowds of spectators gathered on both sides of the river to see them off. The standing record for the Transat Québec Saint-Malo was set by French skipper Loïck Peyron in 1996: he completed the crossing in 7 days, 20 hours, and 24 minutes. This year, depending on their class, boats are expected to arrive in Saint-Malo 10 to 15 days after the start of the race.
The Transat in figures
The Transat Québec Saint-Malo is proud to count on the financial support of its partners: the Canadian Wildlife Foundation, Korem, Croisières AML, the Port of Québec, Québec City and Saint-Malo, Ministère du Tourisme du Québec, the government of Canada, and Québec City Tourism.
About the Transat Québec Saint-Malo
The Transat Québec Saint-Malo is a Voile Internationale Québec event organized by Gestev. Gestev is an innovative event management company that has specialized in sports and cultural events in the Québec City area since 1992. Gestev is certified under the BNQ 9700-253 standard for responsible event management.