The final showdown

France SailGP to showcase world’s fastest sail racing in front of home crowds in Marseille.

10 September 2019


On 20-22 September 2019, the Mediterranean city of Marseille will host the Grand Final of SailGP Season 1 – the new global championship aiming to redefine sailing. For the first time ever in France, the world’s fastest flying catamarans and top athletes will take centre stage, offering a unique and high speed maritime show in Marseille for the spectators expected.

This new annual event, launched at the end of 2018 by Sir Russell Coutts and Larry Ellison, co-founder of Oracle, pits nation versus nation in a series of short format racing in some of the most iconic harbours in the world.

Following four events in Sydney, San Francisco, New York and Cowes, UK, the six teams representing France, Australia, China, Great Britain, Japan and the United States will go head to head in Marseille for the season finale.

The penultimate event in Cowes saw a new F50 speed record broken, with Dylan Fletcher’s British team hitting 50 knots (nearly 60 mph / 100 kph) in training on the revolutionary catamaran, before overall leader Tom Slingsby and his Australian team went one better, to hit the incredible speed during racing for the first time. Marseille promises to be an equally intense and spectacular event.



Currently Australia’s Tom Slingsby is leading the charge at the top of the leaderboard but will have to fight off strong competition from fellow Olympic gold medallist Nathan Outteridge of Japan, Rome Kirby’s young United States team and the British team helmed by Dylan Fletcher. After two days racing in Marseille, the top two ranked teams from the whole season will do battle for glory and the $1 million prize.

The French Team, helmed by Billy Besson, will be looking to continue its success from Cowes SailGP, where they scored their best race position of the season, and hope that a home advantage will elevate them up the leaderboard.

“We are very excited to be racing at home, it brings us extra energy and motivation to do well.

We accomplished some great performances in Cowes and will sail in Marseille with more confidence. A new speed record was established for the F50, of more than 52 knots, so depending on weather conditions during the event, it promises a high tension experience for this Grand Final, both for the teams and the fans.” -Billy Besson, helmsman of the France SailGP Team, four-time Nacra 17 world champion.

For the SailGP Grand Final, there will be a SailGP Fan Zone in front of the MuCem. Giant screens and live race commentary will enhance the fan experience. The offshore seawall has been completely redesigned, with the support of the harbour of Marseille, and hosts a large spectator stand and VIP area, placing fans right at the edge of the action. For French fans unable to get to the event, the races will be broadcasted live on Canal+ Group channels during the three days of the competition.

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