Never rest on your laurels: this appropriately defines the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez mindset, indefatigable organizer of the 25th edition of the Voiles de Saint-Tropez, backed-up by its board of directors and the municipality of the most famous port in the Var.
In lieu of a well-deserved rest, the Société Nautique have been working on a brand-new formula which invites more than 250 of the world’s most beautiful Maxi, Modern and Classic yachts, beginning Friday, September 29 and finishing Sunday, October 8. A revisited formula that promises to be super-vitaminized.
Ten days of racing, with the Maxis as the opening act
That this latest formula is totally new, it is not without echoes of founding event, the Nioulargue. The superyacht fleet will have the honour of opening racing for Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez 2023, with the novelty of racing beginning on the first Sunday, October 1st. This new configuration will allow the public, numerous in turnout during the opening weekend of the event, to see the Maxi fleet in training and to watch high-flying racing between the most impressive monohulls over 18.28 meters, led by eminent international crews, with race starts and finishes happening right in front of the town.
For these giants of the sea, a tailor-made programme will allow them to stand alone in their racing on Sunday, alongside the Modern fleet on Monday, and then from Tuesday to Friday on the water with the whole fleet, notably the Classic yachts. The incredible reunion at this Voiles de Saint-Tropez of more than a century of naval architectural history has been in strong demand for several editions. Importantly, the programme includes a “Lay Day” for the Maxis on Wednesday, which will allow for a second edition of the “Maxi Club 55 Cup”.
Modern and Classics: a renewed programme
From Sunday, the Classic fleet arrive in Saint-Tropez as part of the feeder race of the now well-established “Yacht Club de France Autumn Cup”. Monday, October 2, the Modern fleet will start its racing session with a structure permitting the adjustment of type and distance of racecourse according to the weather. This is made possible by a race committee system of ‘agile’ self-driving, geo-postionable marker buoys, coordinates of which can be transmitted electronically to the participants on the racecourse. The show gains even more momentum on Tuesday with the entry of the Classic boats, with all fleets being on the water at the same time, reviving the DNA of the Nioulargue and the Voiles de Saint-Tropez.
The Challenge Day for the Modern and Classic yachts will be, as usual, scheduled for Thursday, October 5, with combined activities on water and ashore.
Pierre Roinson, president of the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez: “The configuration of the 2023 calendar, in which the last weekend of September straddles the month of October, does not leave much room to complete the regattas before October 10, which is the collective aim. We therefore had to reimagine an event that would allow each of the fleets – Maxi, Modern and Classic – to meet and race in Saint-Tropez in the best possible conditions. This is the challenge we have taken up by proposing a new format over ten days for this 25th edition, which revives the pillars of the Nioulargue where the Maxis race first. Our philosophy has not changed: to set up the most beautiful regattas for the most beautiful boats on our magnificent stretch of water, with the best atmosphere on land.”
Benoit de Froidmont, president of the International Maxi Association: “This new format is a return to the spirit of Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez. “Les Voiles” is a magical and unique blend of Classic and Modern yachts in an enchanting setting. The IMA and the organisers have been working for many years to make this event one of the most important Maxi Yacht gatherings in the world. Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez is also the final round of the IMA Mediterranean Inshore Challenge, one of the most prestigious trophies in the Maxi circuit. 2023 will be the second edition of the IMA Club 55 Cup which will be held during the Lay Day- the quintessence of the festive and sharing spirit of the event. We are very happy to open the show this year, with no doubt a good turn-out. We are looking forward to racing on this magnificent stretch of water.”
- Friday 29 September: (beginning of the afternoon) Maxi registration (over 18.28m)
- Saturday 30 September: Maxi registration (over 18.28m) and registration for Classic and Modern yachts up to 18.28 meters
- Sunday 1st October: regattas for the Maxis, registration for Classic and Modern yachts up to 18.28 meters
- Monday 2 October: regattas for Maxi and Modern yachts
- Tuesday 3 October: regattas for all fleets
- Wednesday 4 October: regattas for Modern and Classic yachts,
- Lay Day, Maxi Club 55 Cup and Challenge Day for Maxis
- Thursday 5: Challenge Day and Club 55 Cup for Modern and Classic yachts,
- regattas for the Maxis
- Friday 6 October: regattas for the whole fleet
- Prize giving for the Maxis
- Saturday 7 October: regattas for Modern and Classic yachts,
- Sunday, October 8: Prize-giving ceremony for Modern and Classic yachts