The Dèfi AtlantiqueGuadelupe-Horta-La Rochelleis the ocean crossing considered as the “return transat”, the return race that brings many of the Class40s that took part in the Route du Rhum back from the Caribbean to the European continent.
Organised by the Grand Pavois Organization and the City of La Rochelle – in collaboration with the Region of Guadeloupe, the City of Horta, the Class40, the Department of Charente-Maritime and the Fédération Française de Voile – the Dèfi Atlantique (“Atlantic Challenge”) is dedicated to the Class40 only and it includes 3,500 miles of crewed navigation, divided into two legs: the first of about 2,200 miles from Pointe-à-Pitre, in Guadeloupe, to Horta, in the Azores Archipelago; the second 1,300 miles from Horta to La Rochelle, in France.
The departure of the second edition of the Défi Atlantique is scheduled for Saturday, April 1, 2023, with the arrival in Horta estimated after about 15 days; the departure from the Azores – after a stopover that will allow the crews to rest and fix any technical problems – is instead set for Sunday, April 16, with the arrival in La Rochelle expected between Friday 21 and Sunday 23 April.
In this period of the year, the Défi Atlantique is a route that becomes demanding, due to the difficulties in interpreting the unstable weather conditions typical of the season.
For the second regatta of the 2023 season, Spanish sailor Pablo Santurde del Arco will once again be in Alberto Bona’s crew, as well as Pietro Luciani, vice president of the Class40 and runner-up at the Défi Atlantique 2019, together with Catherine Pourre, aboard the Class40 Eärendil.