figaro-route1La Solitaire du Figaro is a solo, multi-stage, international sailing race. Created in 1970 by French sailors Jean-Louis Guillemard and Jean-Michel Barrault, the 2011 Figaro is a race between 47 identical Figaro Bénéteau 2 boats, and is one of the most coveted prizes in world sailing.

This year, the race started in Perros-Guirec in Brittany on the 31st of July, with the first leg finishing in Caen in Normandy this week. You can see the full route here.

Ireland is to be the only non-French stop-over on the new course with Dún Laoghaire a destination for the first time. The National Yacht Club is preparing to welcome the single-handed sailors at the end of the 2nd leg next weekend.

For more information on La Solitaire du Figaro 2011, click here.

figaro-start2To celebrate the stopover, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council and the Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company have joined forces to create the Festival Des Bâteaux, from the 11th and 14th of August.

The 2nd leg of the 1,695 nautical mile race will start on the 7th of August as the yachts leave Caen on their 470-mile journey to Dún Laoghaire, arriving on 11th of August and departing again on the 14th.

The Festival Des Bâteaux will feature a wide variety of French-themed events and attractions, including a grand opening ceremony and fireworks on the 12th of August, a festival village with public access to visiting boats, a colourful and varied festival market, a festival stage at Harbour Plaza, and a spectacular closing ceremony.

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Programme

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Friday (August 12th)

2–10pm Festival Market at Carlisle Pier

10pm Opening Ceremony Fireworks from East Pier

Saturday (August 13th)

10am–8pm Festival Market at Carlisle Pier

2–6pm Live Bands (Harbour Plaza Stage); Street Entertainment (Carlisle Pier / Harbour Plaza / Town Centre)

Sunday (August 14th)

10am–8pm Festival Market at Carlisle Pier

11am Boats Depart

2–6pm Live Bands (Harbour Plaza Stage); Street Entertainment (Carlisle Pier / Harbour Plaza / Town Centre)

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