29-06-2022 - News
Two years before the next edition of The Transat CIC, race organisers OC Sport Pen Duick and title partner CIC are pleased to announce a new venue will now take up the mantle as start city for the oldest, single-handed transatlantic race. The city of Lorient and the Lorient Agglomeration have been confirmed as host city and will be the scene of the final preparations and the big start of the event in 2024 and 2028.
Known as one of the world’s toughest solo ocean races, The Transat CIC has enjoyed a wealth of highlights and a variety of courses over the years, all the while remaining true to its pioneering promise: One man, one boat, the ocean.
Held every four years at the beginning of Spring, the first edition was staged in 1960, and since then many legends of the sport have taken on the demanding route of more than 3,000 miles in the North Atlantic between Europe and America. From Chichester to Tabarly via Colas, Poupon, Peyron, Joyon and Gabart - the greatest sailors have all inscribed their names on the list of winners of this pioneering offshore race.
Lorient and the Brittany region
In 2020, as The Transat CIC was preparing to celebrate its 60th anniversary, the pandemic forced OC Sport Pen Duick, the organising company, Title Partner CIC, and all the event's supporters, both institutional and private, to cancel the event just a few weeks before its departure. The start for the next edition was then immediately confirmed to take place four years later. To mark this new chapter, Lorient has committed to the next two editions, and will now host the start of the race in both 2024 and 2028.
The sailors will therefore prepare their weapons in the heart of a port that many know perfectly well. A territory that has been at the centre of ocean racing and innovation for several years, Lorient and the Brittany Region, now as Main Partner of the event, will offer The Transat CIC the most beautiful of start locations.
With the economic fabric of the city orientated towards offshore sailing, and an infrastructure perfectly suited to the organization and hosting of major events, the port is an obvious choice. The partnership is driven by the elected officials of Lorient Agglomeration, whose deep desire is to put the city and the entire territory back at the heart of the most important ocean events.
The port of arrival in North America will be confirmed shortly.
A major sporting event in 2024
Open to several classes – both monohulls and multihulls - The Transat CIC is already a key event in 2024. While the list of classes will officially be confirmed with the release of the Notice of Race, the race will, without a doubt, be an essential part of the racing calendar for many top sailors. For the IMOCA class, the race will be the last oceanic test before the Vendée Globe, while the standard of racing in the Ocean Fifty and Class40 will no doubt be exceptionally high.
While OC Sport Pen Duick and all the sailors who have The Transat CIC in their sights can celebrate this milestone announcement of a start from Lorient in 2024 and the strong involvement of local players, nothing would have been possible without the event's major partners. Since 2020, the CIC and the Brittany Region have committed their ongoing support and loyalty, which today allows the organisers to prepare for the next edition with confidence and to do everything possible to make it a new chapter worthy of the history of the race.
See you in Lorient in 2024!
Joseph Bizard, Managing Director of OC Sport Pen Duick: "When we announced the cancellation of the 2020 edition of The Transat CIC, and put aside the immense frustration, we were immediately working with our partners to make the 2024 edition of the race a success. Since then, this momentum has not weakened. Few events bring together as many assets as The Transat CIC. It already has its place in the offshore racing calendar, and it needed a top-tier starting city. We found that in Lorient, among the elected officials, there is a strong desire to welcome and be part of an event like The Transat CIC. Lorient, the Brittany Region, and the CIC will help take this race to the dimension it deserves. It is a chance for us, the organizers, to set sail for this 2024 edition knowing that everything is in place to make it a success, for the sailors and for the general public.”
Daniel Baal, Managing Director of CIC: "CIC's attachment to Brittany, its commitment to the regional economic fabric and the recognition of the quality of the maritime infrastructure that you find in Lorient, makes it the perfect launching pad of The Transat CIC, which we are looking forward to. Our teams will be at the rendezvous of this great moment of sport. Long live 2024!”
Loïg Chesnais-Girard, President of the Brittany Region: "After the forced cancellation of the 2020 edition, I am delighted to return in 2024 to one of the biggest gatherings in single-handed ocean racing - The Transat CIC, with its demanding course of more than 3,000 miles in the North Atlantic on which Eric Tabarly distinguished himself very early on. We will have the pleasure of seeing his successors set off from the port of Lorient, a land of welcome resolutely turned towards the open sea and open to innovation, with the support of the Brittany Region as Main Partner. This race, open to different classes, will also be a popular event from both a sporting and entertainment point of view, for all Bretons and lovers of the ‘English’ transatlantic race. The Brittany Region faithfully, once again, is committed alongside the organizers to bring to life a new chapter of this historic race.”
Fabrice Loher, President of Lorient Agglomeration and Mayor of the city of Lorient: "This is a very important moment for us, following two years of work between the Lorient Agglomeration and Lorient Grand Large in order to set up a program of races which involves all the actors of La Base, whether in competition or leisure, over four years. This significant investment will allow us to consolidate the image and attractiveness of our offshore racing division.
We invest in the maritime sector out of passion. There are also economic spinoffs for Lorient businesses, with more than 650 jobs in Lorient, including 480 at La Base, as well as potential development spinoffs with other territories. But we do it above all for our love of the sea.
We have experienced many race departures and arrivals at Lorient La Base which always give rise to magnificent events for the public. We now want to go further in the animation of the site and in the exchange between land and sea, to encourage locals to come to the pontoons, to meet the skippers – this is unique because such proximity is not given in all sports.
The icing on the cake is the involvement of the territory with this particularly prestigious race. I am indeed pleased to announce that Lorient will be the departure city for the next two editions of The Transat CIC. We are very happy to take over from the city of Brest and to host this event, which will also allow us to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Eric Tabarly's victory in the English Transat*.” (*Editor's note – The Transat CIC is commonly referred to as the ‘English Transat’ due to its origins).
Jean-Philippe Cau, President of Lorient Grand Large: "Lorient La Base is an emblematic site where everything is adapted to the practice of offshore racing: the players are present there, the harbour represents an exceptional body of water with île de Groix just opposite and the gateway to the Atlantic, many teams are based there, as are specialised companies in the sector. Everyone shares a certain pride at being in Lorient.
It is this link between land and sea that we want to strengthen. Lorient is an obvious start port, located in the heart of Brittany, and the creation of new events will allow us to address as many people as possible and to offer a variety of events organized on site. We do not want to confine ourselves to a single event or a single class of boat, but to be open to all offshore racing players, and to host events of all sizes, thus making it possible to reposition Lorient as an essential place for the discipline.
We are therefore unveiling today a sports program over 4 years, and the particular involvement of The Transat CIC, which will allow La Base to be active all year round and attract a large audience. This is really what we want: that the site be open so that the Lorient, Morbihan and Breton public can access it, as a new symbol of well-being and good living, which is so characteristic of Lorient.”