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Entries open as Bermuda-Lorient challenge looks to continue ocean conservation efforts

Sailing with purpose: The Bermuda Lorient-Pure Ocean Challenge will set off from the island on May 8 and is being staged to help highlight ocean conservation efforts as well as raise funds to support the work of the foundation. (Photographs supplied)

Organisers of the Bermuda Lorient-Pure Ocean Challenge, which will set off from the island on May 8, believe the multi-class sailing event will highlight ocean conservation efforts as well as raise funds to support the foundation’s work.

Entries are now open for the transatlantic race that will see participants looking to better the crossing time of 12 days 23 hours and 16 minutes, which was set in 1983 by Eugène Riguidel and Jean-François le Menec, in the catamaran William-Saurin.

They will also be encouraged to collect ocean data, during the crossing, to help scientific ocean research.

“The Pure Ocean Challenge allows us to combine science with sailing. The sailing community can make a real difference by helping raise funds to support our state-of-the-art research to increase our understanding of the ocean and protect and restore its biodiversity through taking part in this challenge,” said David Sussmann, founder of Pure Ocean.

Meanwhile, Pure Ocean ambassador Jean-Pierre Dick, four-times Transat Jacques Vabre winner and CEO of Absolute Dreamer racing team, has announced that he will be taking part in his JP54.

“This route provides a perfect opportunity, after the Caribbean regatta season, for all classes of boats to head to Europe for the summer racing calendar whilst taking part in a competitive race. This 2900nm Atlantic crossing, during a time of year with warm weather and long daylight hours, is the optimal distance and start configuration for highly enjoyable downwind sailing,” he said.

“I’m also proud to be involved with an event that combines the sport of sailing with efforts to raise awareness of ocean health and the need to protect our precious blue planet.”

While race entry is free, participants are being encouraged to make a donation of $1000, or more, to Pure Ocean. Race fans will be able to track the boats’ progress on the Pure Ocean website, where they will be able to make donations to help its future work.

Jean-Philippe Cau, president of Lorient Grand Large, said: “The Bermuda Lorient – Pure Ocean Challenge builds upon the great story around the historic Lorient-Bermuda-Lorient race.

“The two editions of this race, in 1979 and 1983, were the very first offshore sailing events to be followed by the general public. This is also the story of the strong link between Lorient and the offshore sailing world as it is a port that is totally dedicated to this offshore sailing discipline and the ocean conservation goal of the challenge aligns perfectly with our mission.”

The transatlantic race replaces the previous Pure Ocean Challenge between St Pierre and Miquelon and Lorient.

For more information, interested persons can send an e-mail to mission@pure-ocean.org.

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Published February 17, 2022 at 7:55 am (Updated February 17, 2022 at 7:55 am)

Entries open as Bermuda-Lorient challenge looks to continue ocean conservation efforts

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