Scuttlebutt Europe #2555 - 23 March

Brought to you by Boats.com Europe, Scuttlebutt Europe is a digest of sailing news and opinions, regatta results, new boat and gear information and letters from sailors -- with a European emphasis. Contributions welcome, send to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Team Sanya Working On Repairs After Breaking Rudder
Photo by Andres Soriano / Team Sanya / Volvo Ocean Race. Click on image for photo gallery.

Volvo Ocean Race Team Sanya are working to repair damage to their Volvo Open 70 racing yacht after a broken windward rudder caused the aft compartment of the boat to take on water.

Sanya, who were leading Leg 5 from Auckland to Itajaí in Brazil at the time, reported the damage to Race Control in Alicante at 0800 UTC

The team, skippered by the experienced New Zealander Mike Sanderson, said they were working through the aft deck hatch to pump water from the aft watertight compartment. There is no water leaking into the main compartment of the boat.

The reasons for the broken rudder were not immediately clear.

The damage occurred while the boat was doing between 20 and 25 knots in waves of between 2.5 and 3 metres.

* Groupama sailing team and CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand have been slugging it out for the Leg 5 lead since shortly after 0800 UTC on Thursday when Sanya's starboard rudder broke and about three tonnes of water gushed into the aft watertight compartment.

The leading crews have since been busy stowing away valuables, ensuring essentials are within reach and checking their survival suits as they gain ground on the back of a low-pressure slingshot.

Volvo meteorologist Gonzalo Infante said the Southern Ocean low would pack winds in excess of 40 knots and propel the fleet into potential 24-hour distance record breaking territory.

"The low has very strong, very violent, very cold winds from the deep south, so strong that they are likely to reach gale force,'' Infante said. "The boats will be going very fast, and depending on the sea state, we could see the 24-hour record smashed over the coming days."

At 1315 UTC Groupama were clinging to first place with a 3.9 nautical mile lead over CAMPER as the fleet sailed with more than 20 knots boat speed.

volvooceanrace.com

Maserati Sailing Team Begins Record Run
Click on image to enlarge.

Maserati Sailing Team Begins Record Run Miami, Florida, USA: Italian, German, Spanish and American sailors, largely known for their independent offshore sailing expeditions, have come together in a quest to set a new pace for speed on the water under sail. The impressive collection of globetrotting extreme sailors collectively have more than one million miles of experience offshore. Italian Giovanni Soldini leads the rogue crew of eight, including German Boris Hermann as Navigator, and American Brad Van Liew and Spaniard David Vera as Watch Leaders. They set out today from Miami, Florida aboard the VOR70 Maserati to establish the official monohull sailing record from Miami to New York City.

"The wind directions should offer us nice downwind sailing," said Navigator Boris Hermann. "The conditions are not perfect, but we hope to play the local shifts, the Gulf Stream and other weather details on the route."

American Brad Van Liew added, "We had a fantastic hospitality event hosted by Maserati North America this week and now the crew is fired up and anxious to get back to the mission at hand: beating and setting records. The boat and crew are ready to get back up to full speed."

The record attempt can be followed live on Giovanni Soldini and Maserati's website www.maserati.soldini.it . The site contains news, videos and photos of the crew life on board, and provides continuous monitoring of the marine weather conditions, as well as online tracking to check the position and speed of Maserati in real time. Continuous updates are also available on Facebook (through Giovanni Soldini's official page) and Twitter (@giovannisoldini, @borisherrmann, @bradvanliew).

The challenge is being sponsored by Maserati as main partner and inspiration for the boat's name, by the Swiss bank BSI (Generali Group) and by Generali itself as co-sponsor.

Seahorse Sailor Of The Month
Last month's winner:

Hap Fauth (USA)
‘A sailing gent’ - Sean Clarkson; ‘Beetle cat or maxi, he will find a way to stay in front of you!’ - Ted Matthews; ‘Exactly the sort of positive role model we need’ - Jay Hansen; ‘A great ambassador’ - Bill Gladstone; ‘We need more gents like Hap’ - Jack Orr; ‘Got to vote for the boss!’ - Danny Weeks; ‘He exemplifies what this prize is about’ - Melissa Seamans; ‘Grounded and admirable’ - Brian Kinsella; ‘Hap is great for sailing... and architecture!’ Rehn Hassell.

This month's nominees:

Darren ‘Twirler’ Jones (AUS)
Another unsung hero with multiple world titles in the Farr 30, Farr 40 and Swan 45 classes to name but three. Plenty of other major titles in the Etchells and Melges 32 classes and a handy set of results on the left coast in the sleds. Plus, and maybe more important, this Hobart native’s got a pretty scary fan club who have been leaning on us for a while... Sailmaker, trimmer and all round top bloke. Good enough...

Morgan Larson (USA)
The Oman Air Extreme Sailing team made a nice call taking on the America’s Cup veteran for 2012. Larson arrived in Muscat to make his debut as a X-40 skipper and promptly wiped the floor with his experienced rivals to dominate the opening regatta. Nice result too for Muscat, as the runner-up spot was taken by The Wave Muscat, skippered by Leigh McMillan... who introduced Morgan Larson to the series last year...

Seahorse Sailor of the Month is sponsored by Harken McLube, Dubarry & Musto. Who needs silverware, our prizes are usable!

Cast your vote, submit comments, even suggest a candidate for next month at
sailor.seahorsemagazine.com

* Seahorse has a special subscription offer for those who vote and/or comment on the Sailor of the Month... vote and see!

Clipper 11-12 Race 9: Qingdao To Oakland, San Francisco Bay
While Gold Coast Australia and Singapore are slogging it out at the head of the fleet there is an interesting battle ensuing for third place in the race across the Pacific Ocean.

With fewer than 30 miles separating Derry-Londonderry in third place and Edinburgh Inspiring Capital in sixth, with Qingdao and New York sandwiched in between, there is plenty more excitement to come in the second half of this marathon stage.

Skipper of the entry representing Scotland's capital city, Gordon Reid, says, "It's a tough race for sure, probably the toughest so far, but we will keep pushing hard all the way to the finish and that podium place.

The Race Committee has implemented a boundary of 42 degrees north for this race to keep the fleet out of the worst of the storms in the North Pacific. It is something the tacticians will have to keep firmly in mind as they negotiate the high pressure systems.

The fleet is due to arrive in Oakland, California, between 1 and 7 April. They will be berthed in Jack London Square and hosted by the 2012 Strictly Sail Pacific boat show.

Positions at 1200 UTC, Thursday 22 March 2012

1. Gold Coast Australia, 2132nm to leg finish
2. Singapore, 74nm to leader
3. Derry-Londonderry, 186nm
4. Qingdao, 203nm
5. New York, 204nm
6. Edinburgh Inspiring Capital, 212nm
7. Welcome to Yorkshire, 226nm
8. Visit Finland, 249nm
9. Geraldton Western Australia, 266nm
10. De Lage Landen, 269nm

www.clipperroundtheworld.com
www.facebook.com/clipperroundtheworld
twitter.com/clipperrace

Wins For Zbogar and Gaspic in Scarlino, but Baldassari Leads
Photo of Ivan Klajkovic Gaspic by Robert Deaves. Click on image to enlarge.

Finn European Championship Another mixed up day at the 2012 Finn Europeans in Scarlino, Italy brought wins for Slovenia and Croatia, but Italy ended the day in pole position. A second race win for Vasilij Zbogar (SLO) and and a first win for Ivan Klajkovic Gaspic (CRO) significantly improved their championship chances, but it is Filippo Baldassari (ITA) who holds a narrow overnight lead into Friday's final opening series races. Zbogar is in second, while Giorgio Poggi (ITA) is in third.

The fleet had another long wait on the water before race four could get under way. Eventually the committee boat moved further offshore where a nice 7-8 knot wind was waiting. After a general recall it got away under black flag. The left side seemed to be favoured with reigning Junior European Champion Josip Olujic (CRO) rounding ahead of Thomas Le Breton (FRA), Alican Kaynar (TUR) and Giorgio Poggi (ITA).

The results after five races look like a different regatta to yesterday. The top three this morning are now 8, 9 and 10 after some shocking results; overnight leader Rafael Trujillo (ESP) picked up a 21 and 20 to drop to eighth. But a string of consistent results has moved Baldassari from tenth to first, Zbogar rises from eighth to second and Poggi climbs from ninth to third.

Friday is the final day of the opening series, with three more races possible. With five races, the sailors now have a discard and the medal race will be sailed on Saturday for the top ten, while the rest of the fleet will sail a final race.

Results after 5 races
1. Filippo Baldassarri, ITA, 22 points
2. Vasilij Zbogar, SLO, 23
3. Giorgio Poggi, ITA, 27
4. Ioannis Mitakis, GRE, 27
5. Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic, CRO, 30
6. Deniss Karpak, EST, 35
7. Florian Raudaschl, AUT, 35
8. Rafael Trujillo, ESP, 38
9. Eduard Skornyakov, RUS, 38
10. Pieter-Jan Postma, NED, 41

Juniors
1. Michal Jodlowski, POL, 58
2. Dimitar Vangelov, BUL, 77
3. Arkadiy Kistanov, CZE, 109

Follow the racing on the live blog each day at finneuropeans.org/ec2012/index.php/news-blog with Twitter feed from the media team and the sailors, photos, videos and much more. All you need to know in one place.

Full results at: finneuropeans.org/ec2012/index2.php?Itemid=6

ISAF Evaluation Trials: Glorious Conditions As Sailors Vacate The Bay
Today saw the multihull and skiff sailors move out of Santander Bay and into more challenging conditions outside of the bay.

And it was glorious sailing conditions for the multihull, skiffs and kiteboarders with a steady 10 knot breeze and glorious sunshine.

Sailing finished later today due to the fabulous conditions and a reception was held at City Hall with the mayor of Santander, Inigo de la Serna, who spoke about the ISAF Sailing World Championships which head to northern Spain in 2014.

There are some great plans for the 2014 ISAF Worlds and with the mixed multihulls and women's skiffs on the menu it'll no doubt attract the general public.

Just three days remain in the 2016 Equipment Evaluations and tomorrow is set to be a challenging day for the sailors with big winds predicted.

* With the sunshine and warm temperatures the wind arrived as well at the second day of the ISAF kiteboarding format trials in Santander, Spain. After the morning briefing, the whole kiteboarding fleet headed over to Playa Sardinero the prepare their equipment and to be ready as soon as the wind kicks in.

Unfortunately it took until 1300 before the wind stabilized in direction and strength to allow a course to be set. The race committee announced to firstly go for two standard windward/leeward course races to have a baseline before testing all the new course options on the agenda.

Both races went underway in light conditions between 6 and 9 knots on a two lap course with a leeward gate to give everybody an idea of todays kiteboard course racing abilities. Then the race committee quickly changed the course to a standard downwind slalom with a reaching start - in the meantime the sailors headed out to the race courses of the multihull and skiff evaluations to race these nice new boats. Coaches and spectators were impressed on the board speeds and upwind angles of the kiteboard sailors

A full round of Slalom went underway then with the reaching starts proving to be tricky, but a lot of action on the gybing marks and also some crashes and tangles.

In the later afternoon the whole fleet and the ISAF staff headed back to the CEAR sailing center then to get feedback from the sailors on the formats tested today and different options that could be taken into consideration.

Tomorrow will see the evaluation of the two new racing formats short track and enduro in different configurations. After the feedback from the sailors the evaluation panel will then look into further testing of the most successful formats. -- Markus Schwendtner

www.sailing.org/classes/2016-Equipment-Evaluation.php

Macif Hits The Water
Photo by Francois Gabart / Macif. Click on image to enlarge.

Macif Hits The Water What a special day Thrusday was for Francois Gabart and his 60-foot monohull MACIF, with the launch of the boat marking the kick off of the preparation period leading to the Vendee Globe for the Finistere-based yachtsman and his technical team.

MACIF is a brand new yacht, whose construction ended in 2011, and therefore still hasn't experienced the tough conditions of the Vendee Globe. The same could be said about her skipper, Francois Gabart, almost 29 (his birthday is on March 23), who has never participated in the "Everest of the round-the-world races".

The yachtsman, his partners and his team will have to be patient again as the Vendee Globe does not start before another eight months. But that wait will probably be easier to handle as the sailing sessions will now be intense and frequent. In the weeks to come, the youngest of the skippers who have already confirmed their Vendee Globe participation will have the opportunity to develop the skills he sees as the most important when sailing: Feel confident, stay focused and always improve your knowledge of the yacht you're sailing on. That is a lot to do and there is no risk of ever getting bored…

www.vendeeglobe.org

History and Endeavour set to be Celebrated Again
St.Tropez, France / San Remo, Italy: The Giraglia Rolex Cup is one of the most popular yachting events in the Mediterranean and has been a tradition for European sailors close to 60 years. The event is a pageant of sailing and runs over a full week each year in mid-June.

2012 marks the 60th edition of the Giraglia Rolex Cup, an event that came to life in 1953 in a show of camaraderie between Italian and French sailors wishing to prove that the rigours of World War II were behind them.

The key dates this year are Friday, 8 June to Friday, 15 June. Inshore racing on the Bay of Saint-Tropez takes place from Sunday, 10 to Tuesday, 12 June, and, the offshore race starts on Wednesday, 13 June. The period in Saint-Tropez has a quintessential French Mediterranean feel, with the three days of inshore racing allowing competitors to enjoy the culinary highlights of an engaging port, before embarking on the more serious challenge of a 241-nautical mile race to San Remo, via the Giraglia, a rocky outcrop off the northern tip of Corsica.

For those on the offshore race, the rounding of the Giraglia marks the turning for the home. The rock itself is like many others, topped with a lighthouse to help navigators with their bearings. It lies less than one nautical mile off the coast of Corsica, rises 66-metres at its highest point and measures 600-metres in length. Yet, it has achieved mythic proportion in the minds of racing sailors, who view it in similar terms as the Fastnet Rock: somewhere small and uninhabitable, but crucial in the quest to complete the challenge of the race.

www.giragliarolexcup.com

Industry News
Mark E. Watson, President and CEO of Argo Group, and Jonathan Brewin, Commodore of The Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, are pleased to announce that Argo Group has signed a new, two-year agreement to continue as title sponsor of the Argo Group Gold Cup. Argo Group International Holdings Ltd, an international underwriter of specialty insurance and reinsurance products in niche areas of the property and casualty market, returns as title sponsor for the fifth consecutive year.

This year will mark the 62nd staging of match racing for the King Edward VII Gold Cup. The Cup was originally presented in 1907 by King Edward VII to Sherman Hoyt at the Jamestown Tri-centennial Regatta marking the commemoration of the 300th anniversary of the first permanent settlement in America.

Racing for the 2012 Argo Group Gold Cup will take place from the 2nd to the 7th of October. The spectator friendly racing in Hamilton Harbour adjacent to the Royal Bermuda YC Marina is a spectacular attraction for tourists and Bermuda residents. The Argo Group Gold Cup stands as the 8th and penultimate stage of the Alpari World Match Racing Tour where the teams compete for the ISAF Match Racing World Championship.

In announcing Argo Group's title sponsorship, Mark Watson said, "We are proud to renew our title sponsorship of the Argo Group Gold Cup. This race for the King Edward VII Gold Cup is one of most prestigious on the match race circuit and it's also one of Bermuda's great traditions."

argogroupgoldcup.com

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The Royal Southern Yacht Club have announced that Brewin Dolphin will back the 175 anniversary race programme including the Brewin Dolphin British Open Metre Regatta in 2012. Brewin Dolphin also sponsor the Scottish Series, Commodores Cup and Dragon Gold Cup.

Part of the Royal Southern's sponsorship strategy was to look for other companies that were celebrating milestone or anniversary years in 2012. Brewin Dolphin is celebrating its 250th anniversary this year.

A highlight in the Club's racing calendar will be the 16-day 175 Anniversary Regatta taking place in late May/June. Some 33 classes and 500 sailors are expected to descend on the Hamble-based Club for this unique festival of sailing.

www.yachtracing.biz/blog/

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Bolle, part of the Bushnell Group which specialises in high performance sports optics, are announcing their partnership as Official Sunglasses supplier to the GAC Pindar sailing team, skippered by Ian Williams, the reigning Match Racing World champion. The team will be wearing Bolle's specialist polarised Marine sunglasses, as they compete in the 2012 Extreme Sailing Series, starting in Oman 28 February, and the World Match Racing Tour 2012 series.

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Marina d'Arechi S.p.A. has announced the opening of its Port Village in Salerno which it is hoped will go some way to addressing the chronic shortage of moorings for private boats in the Gulf of Salerno.

Designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, the project comprises 1,000 slips to accommodate boats of up to 100m (328ft), 28 piers with 5,000 metres of wharf for docking, and a heliport within the boatyard.

Built within the Gulf of Salerno, only a short distance from Rome, Naples and the Capodichino

From IBI News:
ibinews.com

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Warsash Sailing Club is delighted to have the expertise of professional sports weather forecaster Weatherwhiz on board throughout the Warsash Spring Series, which gets underway from Sunday 18th March 2012.

Weatherwhiz will be working with the race management group providing information on both pre-race and race days so that the team can maximise the best racing conditions to ensure another highly successful and competitive series. Competitors can also benefit from a free, basic forecast available throughout the event.

Featured Brokerage
Featured Brokerage Boat 2007 J/ 133. EUR 275,000. Located In Bretagne / Brittany, France.

A very smart example of this capable cruiser racer with few miles under her keel. Nicely kitted for racing or fast cruising. Significant price reduction for July 2011 - owner's age beginning to tell!

These boat details are subject to contract. Note: Offers on the asking price may be considered.

Brokerage through Boatshed St Malo: www.yachtworld.com/boatshedstmalo/

Complete listing details and seller contact information at uk.yachtworld.com

The Last Word
Happiness? A good cigar, a good meal, a good cigar and a good woman - or a bad woman; it depends on how much happiness you can handle. -- George Burns

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