Press release: Lanzarote start for the Atlantic Odyssey


Sunday 17 November marked a unique moment for the people of Lanzarote as for the first time in the island’s long and eventful history a sailing event set off across the Atlantic for Martinique, 3000 miles away in the distant Caribbean.

Over the last week, a fleet of 23 sailing yachts flying the flags of 11 nations gathered in the new Marina Lanzarote, the largest among them 17 metre (57 ft) Happy Joss from Germany to the smallest, the 9 metre (30 ft) Capibara from Denmark. The noncompetitive nature of this truly amateur event for cruising sailors is reflected in the fact that nearly half the boats are crewed by families with children, the youngest among the 16 children being two-year old Temoe Bellier-Pontais on Touta. At the other extreme, the oldest participant is 77 year-old Rudi Hart on Happy Joss.

CAPIBARA (9m – 30ft) HAPPY JOSS (17m – 57ft)

The start of the Atlantic Odyssey marks the 20th anniversary of Lanzarote having been declared a UNESCO biosphere reserve in 1993. The main objective of a biosphere reserve is to enable sustained economic development compatible with the conservation of natural resources. To reflect those aims, participants the Atlantic Odyssey will take part in a NOAA funded research project during their transatlantic voyage. Four satellite-tracked drifting buoys will be launched at certain locations across the Atlantic for the observation and measurement of currents, sea surface temperature, atmospheric pressure, winds and salinity.

During the Atlantic crossing the yachts will be automatically tracked by satellite and their position shown on the Atlantic Odyssey website.


Jose Calero, owner of Puerto Caleros Marinas, and Philippe Volny-Anne, president of the Martinique Yacht Club, representing the Regional Council of Martinique

The Atlantic Odyssey is sponsored by Puerto Calero Marinas. Marina Lanzarote, based in the island’s capital, Arrecife, is due to be completed in April 2014. Set to become the best-endowed yachting facility in the Canaries, the marina will include a complete repair and service facility with two separate hoists; one of which, at 820 tonnes, will be largest of its kind in Spain.

The Martinique sponsor of the Atlantic Odyssey is the Regional Council of Martinique, which will be represented at the start by Philippe Volny-Anne, President of the Martinique Yacht Club. While in Martinique, the Atlantic Odyssey will be hosted by Marina Le Marin.

The Atlantic Odyssey is organized by Cornell Sailing Events.

More information on the Atlantic Odyssey

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