The Tour de France is not just cycling's global major, it is a sporting major. And for more than 20 years, there has been a sailing equivalent: the Tour Voile, a stage race around the coast of France with a rolling support circus and teams mainly French in origin but with a sprinkling of international flavour.
But the Tour Voile has recently been acquired by ASO, the organisation responsible for the cycling tour, and this year, for the first time, the Tour Voile will be contested in rapid, exciting, visual catamarans.
CNN MainSail joins the Tour for a couple of key stages where the logistical challenges are the hardest and where keeping the show on the road on time on shore is as challenging as sailing the coastal course. Shirley takes control of one of the entries and finds out how it feels to sail the Tour Voile while checking out what has been brought from cycling to sailing. And we will be asking if the new energy from ASO is about to take this French race global.