Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez: The vim and vigour of Les Voiles!

03/10/2020, Saint-Tropez (FRA,83), Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez 2020, Day 7

            – Act 1 of Les Voiles concludes this evening!
            – Eva (Fife 1906) secures the Rolex Trophy
– All the results online at 

http://www.lesvoilesdesaint-tropez.fr/regates/resultats-vdst/

Enjoying breeze, sunshine, numerous races validated and a sporty and resolutely positive atmosphere barely altered by the health context, the first part of the new format Les Voiles, which has this year been extended to two weeks, rounds off after a final day of racing contested in a medium wind and azure skies. The prize-giving ceremony organised in the Race Village this evening brings to an end Act 1 of the 2020 edition of Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez. As the big boats, maxi yachts and large schooners prepare to join the fray this coming Tuesday, the 130 racers measuring less than 20 metres, which have been putting on a dazzling spectacle throughout the week in France’s Var region, will this evening be justly rewarded for all their efforts as numerous Trophies are awarded to the different fleets. Sailors, skippers and owners have given their all during these past 4 days of racing, really adding some pizzazz to what has otherwise been a rather forgettable season, scarred by numerous cancellations. As such, satisfaction was the overriding sentiment among the participants tonight, who are grateful for the great variety of wind and sea conditions throughout the week. This evening, the event celebrates the crews who have demonstrated the greatest versatility and adaptability, as much in the light airs as the meatier breeze. The next two days will be dedicated to a wave of comings and goings as the event prepares to host Act II of Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez, the Voiles Super Series, with play set to kick off on Tuesday 6 October.

Results online this evening!
The Prize-giving will be held this Saturday evening in the Village des Voiles, where the social distancing guidelines will be of paramount importance. All the results and Trophies will be posted up at http://www.lesvoilesdesaint-tropez.fr/regates/resultats-vdst/

Eva, Power to the women!
No fewer than 12 Trophies will be awarded to the winners of the various groups in the competition. Among the most prestigious is the Rolex Trophy, which has shone a spotlight on one of the classes of classic yachts since 2006. This year, it will go to the group of Period Gaffer Bs, a category grouping together the oldest yachts signed up for Les Voiles. And it is Eva, the 1906 Fife design which has enjoyed a brilliant regatta, winning two of the three races validated. Up against the formidable Viola (Fife 1908), Eva (Fife 1906) dominated play with a crew which was predominantly female, since 7 of the 9 crew were women, including skipper Charlotte Franquet. Eva also happens to be owned by Pete Townsend, the famous guitarist in The Who. Charlotte Franquet (Eva – Fife 1906):
“We’re delighted to win the Rolex Trophy, amidst an atmosphere of joy and good humour to boot, with a crew that is 80% female. This last day was a bit complicated for us as we didn’t have the right sail. This year, the Rolex Trophy comprised a very fine group, the Period Gaffer Bs, which boasted some exceptional craft. It’s really nice to win here. I’ve helmed Eva for the past 16 years and she’s a fantastic Fife design. She is a precursor of the metre boats, but she was designed before the ‘international rule’ came out in 1907. She had two sisterships, which have not survived, and in fact Eva herself was abandoned for a long time in Spain. Her present owner, since 2013, maintains her well and enables her to sail. It’s crazy how elegant these yachts are and we’re here not just for performance but to show what we’re made of. These craft have a lot of constraints and it’s down to us to adapt to them. We try to sail well and cleanly so that everyone enjoys themselves and if we get the results we’re after then it’s fantastic. Les Voiles is a very special event for me, as I’ve lived around the bay for a long time. It’s quite a moment and it’s wonderful that Les Voiles has been able to go ahead. It’s part of a tradition. It’s an unmissable meet. I race with local sailors from Saint Tropez, 7 girls and 2 boys, and the bay is our playing field of choice.”

Tony Oller, Managing Director of the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez:
“It’s all systems go this evening. The week has gone very smoothly, as everyone’s played the game. I’d like to thank all the crew who have taken heed of the gravity of the pandemic and have adapted their behaviour accordingly, which has allowed us to host the event. The weather has been full of contrasts, with some great days of racing, but also one difficult day yesterday with the storm phenomenon. We’ll attack the second week with real gusto. Despite everything, the restricted village this year has proven to be a hit as a result of its more intimate feel. Of course I very much hope that next year’s event will see the return of the bar, which really adds to the sociability and atmosphere of our evenings. The sailors do greatly appreciate the fact that we’ve really had to work hard to ensure Les Voiles could be run. We’ve done it for them and they know that, which is another reason why their behaviour has been exemplary.”
2020 programme:
Week 1: Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez
Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th September: registration for boats up to 20 meters (except for certain classes)
Monday 28th September: racing for modern yachts
Tuesday 29th, Wednesday 30th September, Friday 2nd, Saturday 3rd October: racing for modern yachts and classic yachts
Thursday 1st October: Challenge Day
Saturday 3rd October: prize giving (week 1)
Week 2: Les Voiles Super Series
Sunday 4th and Monday 5th October: big boat registration (Wally, IRCA, Maxi yachts, big Classic, big Schooner)
Tuesday 6th, Wednesday 7th, Thursday 8th, Friday 9th: big boat racing
Friday 9th October: prize giving (week 2)
The measures set out by the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez (outside the plan for competitors):
Staff and volunteers
– Screening of all the contributors before and during the event
 
Les Voiles Village
– Slimming down of the village to 400m2 (instead of the usual 1,500m2), maximum of 400 people
– Exhibitors’ spaces limited to partners. Access to the official North Sails boutique will solely be from the outside.
– Wearing of a mask, temperature check at the entrance and hand sanitising gel: compulsory
– Collaboration with the Cerballiance laboratory to screen those wishing to undergo testing.
– Entertainment: The traditional boules (bowling) competition, crew parade, crew festival and sardine feast will not be able to be hosted this year.

Media
– Remote registration formalities, no press office, contact with the press office via email, text or telephone only.
For embarking aboard a boat : negative test within 72 hours, wearing of a mask compulsory, meeting point for boarding the boats dockside.

Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez’s partners.
ROLEX
BMW
NORTH SAILS
CHAMPAGNE BESSERAT DE BELLEFON
EAUX 808
SUZUKI MARINE
MERCANTOUR EVENT
MARSHALL
TORPEZ (VIGNOBLES DE SAINT-TROPEZ)
BERNARD OPTIC
LORO PIANA
INTERNATIONAL MAXI ASSOCIATION
DERBEZ JARDINS
PORT DE SAINT-TROPEZ
LES MARINES DE COGOLIN
FEDERATION FRANCAISE DE VOILE (FRENCH SAILING FEDERATION)
YACHT CLUB DE FRANCE

Organisation:
Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez

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