Sydney Harbour a fresh backdrop for the Globe40

Between Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean and Chile’s city of Valparaíso on the west coast of South America, the city of Sydney, Australia, will form the link between the two in the Asia – Pacific region of the GLOBE40 2025/2026 course. Indeed, Sydney Harbour is set to provide a fantastic backdrop for the finish of the event’s 3rd leg in mid-December 2025 and the start of the 4th leg in early January 2026. In the meantime, the same venue will also host the start of the legendary Sydney – Hobart race on boxing day. The Antipodean stopover in this round the world race on Class40s, replacing Auckland in New Zealand from the first edition, this new venue will give competitors the chance to explore the Australian continent and the very attractive metropolis of Sydney.

A sea passage connecting the Indian Ocean and the waters off South Australia

Setting off from the second stopover of Reunion’s Pointe des Galets marina in the urban area of Territoire de l’Ouest, the competitors will have to sail 5,120 miles on a direct course to the leg finish in Sydney Harbour. Just a stone’s throw from Shark Island (…) with views across to the world-renowned opera house, the venue will also play host to the start of the Sydney-Hobart race a few days after the GLOBE40 fleet makes landfall. The course will initially involve a rapid descent towards the Roaring Forties, past the French Southern and Antarctic Lands, like Amsterdam Island negotiated in 2022, before passing the longitude of Cape Leeuwin, the 2nd legendary cape on this circumnavigation of the globe. From there, the Class 40s will navigate the area to the south of the Great Australian Bight and the notoriously tough Bass Strait, before putting into Sydney some 400 miles north in the Tasman Sea. On the menu are around 25 days of full-on racing, which is set to be particularly complicated on the approach to the Australian continent.

Sydney, a city reconciling heritage and modernity

The most famous of Australia’s cities, even though it is not the capital, Sydney will provide the perfect backdrop for this third leg of the GLOBE40. Indeed, this particular stretch of water lies within a large, highly protected natural harbour lined with charming little towns like Manly, Watsons Bay and Rose Bay, with Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge and the skyscrapers rising up like a mirage at the far end. Sydney is a city that attracts one and all thanks to its intriguing architectural character combing modernity and heritage, green space and major construction. It enjoys an Anglo-Saxon influence with accents ranging from London to New York blending into the culture and history of a city, which has been opening up its borders to help swell the population.

The sea forms part of Sydney’s heritage on a daily basis

In Sydney, catching a ferry at the Circular Quay shipping terminal is as commonplace and rapid as riding the underground in Europe’s capital cities. A fleet of little green and yellow ferries connects all the numerous destinations around the bay on either side of Sydney Harbour Bridge. The city’s portside architecture is also punctuated by its links to Sydney’s maritime past as a venue welcoming newcomers who would go on to build the Australian nation. Finger wharves colour its geography, with the entire length of the city fringed by kilometre upon kilometre of old quays and warehouses restored and transformed into marinas, housing, offices and hospitality spaces. Often stunning creations blending modernity, old wood and steel with nostalgic names like Wooloomooloo, the network of quays and wooden walkways make it the perfect spot for walkers and joggers making their way from Marina Harbour to the west to the prestigious Cruising Yacht Club of Australia (CYCA) marina to the east. Each year, the latter organises the world-renowned Sydney-Hobart race. Slotted in midway through the GLOBE40 stopover, the skippers will be free to mix it up in the festive atmosphere prior to the start or get away from it all and go surfing on the huge sandy expanses of some treasured spots like the popular Bondi Beach.
 
Between Reunion or Intense Island, the epic destination of Sydney, and the colourful city of Valparaíso steeped in a history carved out by the sea and by art, it is evident that a rather unique course is on offer to the skippers competing in the 2nd edition of the GLOBE40.

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