St Barts gives details of its programme and welcomes some new partners

With three months to go to the start of this new event on the international sailing calendar, everyone in the Voiles de Saint Barth organising committee is hard at work sorting out the racing details, but they are also looking at the entertainment and festive features of the event. The teams under the authority of the president, Bruno Magras, assisted by Luc Poupon and François Tolède, have been working on the major features in the programme, which will bring together the finest boats racing in the Caribbean.
Three new partners have joined the Voiles de St Barth : Richard Mille Watches becomes the headline partner, with the Banque des Antilles Françaises and the St. Barts Hoteliers Association as official partners.
Some top names as patrons
Such a special event deserves exceptional patrons and partners. The French photographer, who is in most demand at the moment in the fashion world, Patrick Demarchelier, who is also a successful sailor and happens to live in St. Barts, has willingly agreed to become the patron of the Voiles de Saint Barth. His work alongside the world’s greatest clothes designers and in the world of fashion is renowned and his name is now automatically linked to beauty and the finer things in life.
A poet, well known artist, and someone who is also searching for beauty often in seascapes, Titouan Lamazou (the first winner of the Vendée Globe) has designed the official poster for the Voiles de Saint Barth.  He will of course be present during the races, maybe out on the water, but certainly ashore, as some of his works will be on show in a gallery in Gustavia.
The headline sponsor for the Voiles de Saint Barth, Richard Mille, who is famous for his F1 watches, is once again showing his interest in yachting by becoming involved with the Voiles de Saint Barth.  A partner to the Superyacht Class, he would like his name to be permanently associated with a top class event, capable of bringing together the finest boats racing in the Caribbean.  Official partners for the Voiles de Saint Barth, the Banque des Antilles Françaises and the St. Barts Hoteliers Association are offering considerable support to organise this event, which has the backing of all of the authorities in St. Barts. 
A real racing calendar
The decision to put on this event in early April was taken by the organisers, as they wished to offer sailors from around the world a well-defined race programme, which as well as being an enjoyable experience in the warmth of the trade winds, keeps the logistical aspects simple for the crews.  Placed in between the Heineken Regatta, the Bucket Regatta and Antigua Week, the Voiles de Saint Barth has filled a gap in the racing calendar.  With a week of intense racing using various formats, this new date on the calendar fits in perfectly with what the skippers and owners are looking for.  This has been confirmed by the large number of requests for information and registrations, which have been pouring in over the past few weeks.
The festive spirit in St. Barts
As they wish to unite sailors from around the world with the locals, the organisers are setting up a festive event on the island with music and where a friendly atmosphere is guaranteed.  Racing is scheduled to finish each day at around four, depending on the weather, but the fun will go on inside the special Voiles Village to make this a truly festive occasion. Live music, a giant screen and a bar for the crews mean that each evening between six and ten the sailors will be meeting up with visitors to the event. Each evening will be given a particular joyful theme and you can be sure that it will be a relaxed and enjoyable occasion as we have come to expect in St. Barts.  The best pictures of the day’s racing will be projected as night falls, and will offer a fascinating backdrop to the atmosphere in the village. The village will once again be open the next morning for the crews’ breakfasts, before racing gets underway again at ten.
For the final day of the event, a Richard Mille picnic will be organised on the paradise beach in Colombier with all of the crews. The aim is to mark this first edition of the Voiles de Saint Barth with a friendly gathering before everyone lines up at 4.30 in the afternoon for the start of the rally to Antigua, the final leg of the 2010 Caribbean racing season.