Route du Rhum 2022 – Destination Guadeloupe

R-E-S-P-E-C-T! This race is not for the faint-hearted, mastering the Atlantic Ocean single-handedly…on your own…solo skippering…racing against time and your opponents.
The start point is the beautiful French port of Saint-Malo in Brittany on the English Channel coast, destination is Pointe-à-Pitre in Guadeloupe in the Lesser Antilles. A huge and dangerous ocean lies between these two harbours and winning is everything. TA-DAH.TV was at the race start to catch the vibe and sample the atmosphere.

Taking place every 4 years, this race pushes singlehanded sailors to the max. Thousands of punters lined the harbour and coastline to see the boats off to give their captains courage. Over the years, the boats have dramatically improved and it’s a mighty impressive view, as they don’t just to make it to Guadeloupe, but to hopefully win as well. What is also impressive, is the fact that more and more women are taking part these days. Talk about courage, ambition and ability – it’s genderless, and these women sailors prove it, including Ellen MacArthur, who came first twice: once in 1998 in her monohull of 50-feet and again in 2002 in Imoca monohull . Watch our video now and check out the race progress and individual stories at the race’s online portal as well (routdurhum.com)

 

Route du Rhum – The Ultimate Race for Solo Sailors

The Frenchmen Michel Etevenon created this exciting race La Route du Rhum > Destination Guadeloupe in 1978. 44 years on it is still known as the queen of transatlantic solo races, pushing skippers to their utmost ability. Bringing together the largest fleet in ocean sailing to the same start line, to offers a chance to professional and amateur sailors alike the chance to make history by covering a distance of 3,542 miles or 6,562 kilometres to Pointe-à-Pitre in Guadeloupe.

Having become the most legendary of singlehanded transatlantic yacht races, it has not lost any of its magic or popularity over the years through its incredible diversity of classes and skippers. These days 6 categories are admitted to the start line, comprising of 6 boat categories: Ultim32/23, IMOCA, Ocean50, Class40, Rhum Multi & Rhum Mono. The winning race time in 2022 was achieved by Charles Caudrelier in his Maxi Edmond de Rothchild Ultim, who crossed the finish line in a hugely impressive 6 days, 19 hrs, 47 minutes and 25 seconds. Francois Gabart followed a few hours later in 2nd place, having sailed the Atlantic in 6 days, 23 hrs, 3 minutes, 15 secs and Thomas Coville came 3rd with a race time of 7 days, 6 hrs, 37 mins and 25 secs. Veteran Francois Joyon came a very impressive 4th – nous te saluons, Francois!

The 40th anniversary of the race saw other records broken as well with 1,35 million visitors turning up at the race village before the race even took off. A record number of 123 sailors entered the race, with a record number of women skippers taking part that year. The architects Marc van Pethegem & Vincent Lauriot-Prévost saw their 8th consecutive success with their multihull designs, which is nothing short of remarkable. First, Florence Arthaud won the race in one of their designs in 1990, and her boat provided the master plan for subsequent winners, including Franck Cammas, Loïck Peyron & Francis Joyon.

6 Boat Categories – All In Excess Of 39ft

IMOCA
The Imoca class comprises of ocean racing monohulls with a length of 60ft. It’s the IMOCAs that race in the Vendée Globe and are considered to be experimental boats. With more than 30 years of technological innovation, creators have been able to improve keels, sail plans, cockpits, the coach roof, and most recently include foils too – exciting times!

OCEAN FIFTY
The Ocean Fifty class brings together 50-foot multihulls, having been set up in 2021 by the original Multi50 class. Over the past fifteen years, these boats have constantly developed – they should raise the competition by a considerable level, putting on real pressure on the whole fleet.

CLASS40
This class consists of 40ft monohulls, aiming to establish a race programme with ocean and coastal races for experienced amateur racers, who are able to compete alongside pro racers. Set up as a joint programme between sailors and designers, planning on ocean-racing fit boats fitting in between the 6.50 mini racers and 60-foot boats.

ULTIM32/23
Make no mistake, these boats are FAST! These giants of the sea represent the leading category of the Route du Rhum and are, of course, expect them to cross the finish line in Guadeloupe first. These boats are designed to smash records, taking up the most extreme challenges. They are amongst the newest boats in the race, including the SVR-Lazartigue, the Banque Populaire XI maxi and the Sodebo Ultim 3.

RHUM MONO
Comprising of monohulls in excess of 39ft, these boasts, which are not able to enter any other class, they make up a rather wide range of vessels, from prototypes to more historic vessels. With boats in this class ranging from between 40ft – 60ft, add to that builds ranging from between 1967 to 2011, they will certainly add some excitement to the race.

RHUM MULTI
Measuring less than 64ft for two or three hulls, this is the class in which Florence Arthaud won ’the Rhum’ in 1990 aboard ‘Flo’! Highly competitive, this category could easily turn out like a race within a race and should through this Atlantic challenge wide open.

Saint-Malo Village

13 days of special events precede the race start, such is the hype! Each class will have its own parade day for visitors to get to know the boats, and for the first time ever, the Ultim boats, being the giants of the sea and which previously found it hard to dock in the port, are joining the rest of the fleet being able to moor in the Vauban and Duguay-Trouin docks, now grouped together along the famous race quays close to the city walls. The city is looking forward to welcome keen enthusiasts and sailing fans once again in their millions.

The historic Breton city of Saint-Malo was built between the 17th and 18th centuries and stands out because of its beauty and architectural and environmental heritage. Staying true to its authentic character, the port city has always expressed its passion for the sea in the past and with the Route du Rhum found the perfect vehicle to be put firmly on the map of the European-wide sailing community. As a place associated with great navigators, explorers, discoverers, privateers, fishermen and famous ocean racers, Saint-Malo has been hosting major sailing race events for over four decades – the Route du Rhum has set sail there for 44 years, as we release our programme.

 

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