Significant regional involvement

Resolutely geared towards the sea, the city of Brest has transformed itself into a reference maritime venue for major offshore races. As such, it is no coincidence that for the second consecutive year it is preparing to host the Guyader Bermudes 1000 Race Brest-Brest, a course that forms part of the IMOCA GLOBE SERIES from 4 to 14 May 2023. Its sporting dimension will undoubtedly shine a spotlight on its port and provide a fantastic show for the locals. Indeed, the programme is set to include speed runs around the famous Brest speed base and the harbour will host the start and finish of an offshore sprint that will gather together the stars of sailing, including a large number of Vendée Globe competitors.  

“I’m very happy to be working with Antoine Mermod and Class IMOCA once again. Every year for the past couple of decades or so, we have been creating major events fuelled by the same passion and the same desire to write some of the finest stories in ocean racing. As in previous years, this fourth edition of the Guyader Bermudes 1000 Race - Brest / Brest  promises to be an emotional rollercoaster ride,” says Gwen Chapalain, founder of Sea to See, the event organiser, who has been won over by the many assets on offer in the region, which undoubtedly owes its maritime vocation to its geographical position. “Brest harbour is a fantastic playground for watersports activities. It’s also a genuine invitation to travel,” adds the event director. Therefore, the start and finish of this year’s event will be contested in this fine city on Brittany’s Atlantic coast for the second time in a row with the locals being treated to a number of highlights, including the hosting of the IMOCA fleet at the Marina du Château on Thursday 4 May, the Défi Pom’Potes speed runs on Friday 5 May, the start of the sprint race on 7 May at 14:00 hours local time and the race finish from 11 May. 

Local children join in the adventure

“It’s an incredible opportunity to be able to host an event like this in Brest, on the tip of Brittany, which is where it all began. I’d like to express my sincere thanks to all the local protagonists, the Région Bretagne, the Département du Finistère, the city of Brest, the Fêtes Maritimes de Brest, as well as Le Télégramme, Ouest-France, France Bleu Breizh Izel and all the partners who are supporting this venture. I’d also particularly like to thank Christian Guyader, President of Guyader Gastronomie, and Jean-Guy Le Floch, founder and CEO of the Armor-Lux hosiery, with whom I’ve been working for a number of years, for their unfailing trust,” continues Gwen Chapalain, who sets great store by promoting and getting the local region involved, as well as developing close relations with the local population. In this way, associates from the ocean science institute IFREMER and, above all, nearly 1,000 nine to ten-year-olds and students from the Brest Métropole naval college, as well as sailors and authors from the Gallimard publishing house, will be participating in the Guyader Bermudes 1000 Race literary break, with each of them coming up with a few lines on a common theme: ‘The ocean a mirror of our dreams’. At the same time, the organisation has teamed up with the Department of the Finistère and set up ‘A day for children’, a day-long journey of discovery dedicated to children placed under the protection of the Departmental Council, with Jean Le Cam as its patron. “The children will be able to enjoy a tour of the dock, chat with the skippers and teams and enjoy a trip out to sea on a boat,” explains the organiser, who is keen to enable as many people as possible to learn all about offshore racing and get a taste for the real effort and excellence that characterises the sport. The other strong values brought to the fore through this event will be commitment, boldness and inclusiveness, which are values shared by the city of Brest, the Department of the Finistère and the Breton Region. 


Emilie Kuchel, Regional Councillor of Brittany: “The Breton region is a maritime land and it is very proud to welcome the Guyader Bermudes 1000 Race, which promises to showcase Brittany as a whole, the Department of the Finistère and the city of Brest. It’s an event, which inspires dreams and adventure and it’s important for the whole of the region on a technological, economic as well as sporting level. It’s also an event which unites people and that’s something that is absolutely essential.  It doubtless requires an element of craziness to organise this type of race, and even more so to participate in it, but it does our society good to embrace people who are enthusiastic, ambitious and willing.”

Maël de Calan, President of the Conseil Départemental du Finistère: “The Conseil départemental du Finistère is especially proud to be supporting the Guyader Bermudes 1000 Race Brest - Brest. The 2023 edition will be punctuated by the hosting of children placed in the department’s care, at the heart of this unmissable nautical event. The children will benefit from a special day dedicated to them to discover all about the adventure of offshore racing.”

Charles Kermarec, vice-chairman of Brest Métropole, Head of Boating: “The city of Brest is very pleased to be able to welcome and support this latest edition of the Guyader Bermudes 1000 Race. The locals have a real love for the sea so they’re sure to make their presence felt. Brest is a port synonymous with records and it’s also a port that has past experience of organising large-scale events. We’re sure that conditions here will meet the sailors expectations and that the show will be as fantastic as it was during the last edition.”

Mélanie Kerguenou, Director of Bermudes: “We’re very pleased to continue our commitment to the organisers. On both a technical and operational level, helping to promote the Finistère region is essential for the Bermudes brand, which belongs to the Armor-Lux group. Confirming our commitment to top-level sport is fundamental to our brand. This Guyader Bermudes 1000 Race is a guarantee of a very fine race. A race which, since its creation, has managed to wonderfully combine performance and sociability, as well as providing a platform on which skippers, partners and the general public are always happy to reconnect. Brest is a city I’m particularly fond of and it’s preparing to play host to a stellar line-up once again.”

Christian Guyader, President of Guyader Gastronomie: “I’d like to thank Gwen Chapalain and all his team who, once again, have managed to reconcile performance and conviviality. The Guyader Gastronomie company, a major advocate of convivial gastronomy, is very proud to extend its support to the race. For its fourth edition, the event will gather together inspirational boats and sailors and this year in particular it will inspire the children of the city of Brest and those under the protection of the Department of the Finistère. Each and every one of them will get the chance to discover the offshore racing universe and, hopefully, learn that the sea is an extraordinary playground, the likes of which are very few and far between today.”