Mini En Mai
The Mini En Mai is the first race for Sandy and with a 500 mile course which will be sailed solo, he is really jumping into the deep end! A maximum of 50 boats will depart from La Trinite Sur Mer on May 20th where they will sail up and down the Western coast of France for what could be up to five days depending on wind strength. This will be a real testing event for Sandy as he sees first hand where he places amongst the competitive French fleet.
Next up on Sandy’s racing calendar is the extremely popular Armen Race. The 300 mile course will test the team’s double handed sailing abilities as they race against not only other Minis, but Class 40s, Open 60s, and Maxi Trimarans.
Les Sables Azores runs on alternate years to the Mini Transat. The race is a total of 2560 miles long, consisting of two separate legs: from France to the Azores, and back again. Like the Mini Transat, navigation and communication equipment is restricted so its back to navigating with paper charts and sextants!
Qualification for the Azores race is simple:
– 1,000 mile non stop solo passage in the boat they wish to enter with
– A minimum of two Mini races covering a minimum of 500 race miles in total, with one of these races being a solo race
Just finishing the Mini Transat is a major feat for any sailor who dares brave the hell and fury the Atlantic Ocean can unleash on such a small boat. At the very least, surviving the trek invariably means getting beaten and tossed around for weeks on a 6.50-meter boat that merits its “Mini” name. Let’s face it: it’s a funny idea to want, in the age of widely available Internet, satellite links and instant communication, to undertake a Transatlantic crossing with your means of communication limited to the absolute essentials in a tiny boat of 6.50 m. And yet, for every edition, there are more than a hundred wanting to try their luck.
The Mini Transat is an experience of a lifetime that just isn’t another tick on a bucket list. The race known as the toughest on the earth starts in Douarnenez, France, with the first leg ending at Lanzerote. After a few days rest the fleet set off again with the second leg finishing off Pointe a Pitre, Guadeloupe.
In order to qualify for the Mini Transat, competitors need to sail:
– 1000 miles worth of races, one of which must be solo
– 1000 mile non stop solo passage in the boat they wish to enter wish