07-12-2021 - News

Brest to host the start and finish of the ARKEA ULTIM CHALLENGE - Brest 2023


In July this year, the first ever Solo Ultim World Tour was confirmed – a single-handed race around the planet in the world’s fastest oceanic trimarans. Today, the next major milestone for the pioneering race has been announced with the confirmation that the city of Brest will host the start of the inaugural race in 2023, welcoming six of the world’s best skippers before they set off on the ultimate challenge – a solo circumnavigation of the planet on the world’s most highly advanced ocean-going race boats, before returning to the same port.


The city was confirmed jointly at the Nautic Paris Boat Show by OC Sport Pen Duick, organiser of the event, François Cuillandre, Mayor of Brest and President of Brest Métropole, Loïg Chesnais-Girard, President of the Region Bretagne and Maël de Calan, Chairman of the Finistère departmental council.


Already regarded as a territory of oceanic excellence, as host of both the start and finish of the Solo Ultim World Tour, Brest will reinforce the territories commitment to the sailors, the sea, and the most advanced technological challenges. A region that is passionate about navigation, innovation and human challenge, the city in westernmost France is a natural fit for the race and this incredible adventure.


In 2023, six of the world’s best solo sailors will take on this incredible test of both man and machine at the helm of their giant multihulls. They will depart Brest and its famous harbour for an oceanic battle around the planet, before returning to the waters of the Iroise Sea, off the coast of Brittany in north-western France.


The concept of the Solo Ultim World Tour was first conceived 15 years ago, and this long-awaited event will be organised by OC Sport Pen Duick - organizer of The Transat CIC which will depart from the same Finistère port in 2024 - and all the skippers and owners of the large 32-meter oceanic trimarans, who will unite around these incredible machines.


While the start date for the Solo Ultim World Tour is still to be announced, one thing is certain: institutions, sailors and organisers already have their sights set on 2023.


They said:

François Cuillandre, Mayor of Brest and President of Brest Métropole:

"This is an important announcement for Brittany, for our territory and for sport in general. We are very proud to welcome in Brest the start of this new great adventure of racing around the world. It is of course a privilege for our territory, but it is above all the result of ambition and long-term work to make Brest, and its harbour, the most beautiful in the world, a stronghold of the yachting and sport industries. We are all looking forward to seeing the giants of the seas, the Ultims, set off from the port of Brest, with the best skippers in the world. I have no doubt that the public will be out in force, and that this event will become a hugely popular celebration.”


Loïg Chesnais-Girard, President of the Brittany Region:

“This solo Ultim Round the World Tour will be an extraordinary adventure which is already fascinating our territory. This event reflects Brittany and the Bretons with its values ​​of humility, passion, and commitment, but also its ability to work together as a team supporting the sailors who will embark on these extraordinary boats.

These boats are also thought out, designed, and built in Brittany, where we have companies which are able to come together for common projects. The sea, this desire for adventure, this pledge for commitment - this is Brittany and what we are going to experience in 2023!"


Maël de Calan, President of the departmental council of Finistère:

"We didn't hesitate when the Groupe Télégramme and the city of Brest asked us to be partners, because, fundamentally, these great ocean races belong to Brittany. It was important for us to have a great race around the world, and this completely meets our level of ambition. The Finistère department is proud to be one of the main partners in the practice of sailing in Brittany, from amateur clubs to great champions.


We are also associated with this event for Brest, where we know the role that the metropolis plays in economic and tourist attraction, and in the notoriety of our department. We will seek to ensure that all those who follow this feat remember that Brest is at the tip of Brittany and in Finistère. The Finistère department is extremely happy to be a partner in this race - for sailing, for Brest and for Finistère!"


* Actual Ultim 3 / Yves Le Blevec, Banque Populaire XI / Armel Le Cléac'h, Brest Ultim Sailing / Skipper TBC, Maxi Edmond de Rothschild / Charles Caudrelier, Sodebo ultim 3 / Thomas Coville and SVR-Lazartigue / François Gabart (TBC).

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