Nova Scotia

French victory marked at yacht race from Halifax to St-Pierre

The Route Halifax St-Pierre yacht is held once every two years. One of the sailboats participating is marking the 200th anniversary of when St-Pierre-Miquelon became a French territory from the British.

Race falls on 200th anniversary of St-Pierre-Miquelon becoming French territory

Thirteen yachts left for Saint-Pierre from Halifax Harbour on Sunday. (Stephanie Blanchet/Radio-Canada)

Thirteen sailboats left Halifax on Sunday for St-Pierre-Miquelon as part of the Route Halifax St-Pierre yacht race. 

The race is held once every two years. One of the yachts competing is the celebrating the 200th anniversary of when St-Pierre-Miquelon became a French territory from the British.

"We will have an English skipper and a French skipper so the image is pretty nice," said Philippe Paturel, a co-skipper of the yacht Celebrations*1816-2016. Paturel is from St-Pierre and co-founded the race.

'A long maritime history'

Of the ten member crew of the nearly 20-metre Celebrations*1816-2016 yacht, five are French, two are English and three are Canadian.

"There has always been a long maritime history between France and the UK. Some of it's good, some of it's bad," said Chris Stanmore-Major, the other skipper of Celebrations*1816-2016.

Stanmore-Major said should his team win the race, the trophy would either stay in St-Pierre or go to Nova Scotia. The journey is 360 nautical miles from Halifax, or just a little over 666 kilometres.

"It's about everybody coming together and enjoying the sea and enjoying racing and sailing. That's what's most important," said Stanmore-Major.

Eighteen boats registered for the race, ranging in size from more than six metres to nearly 20 metres. There is a mixture of Canadian, French, American and British participants.

There will be an arrival ceremony in St-Pierre at the end of the race.

With files from Stephanie Blanchet