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Phuket King's Cup Regatta
Photo by Max Ranchi, www.maxranchi.com. Click on image for photo gallery.
The 27th Phuket King's Cup Regatta launched in beautiful sunshine and in consistent winds as this classic race in the Andaman Sea kicked off with one of its largest ever fleet of keelboats; 105 entries competing over a newly expanded range of 15 individual classes.
In the Grand Prix class IRC0, a six way contest between representative vessels from Hong Kong, Australia and Thailand will do battle during the course of this Regatta week. Jelik skippered by Frank Pong started this year's competition with the kind of form this team enjoyed last year. On corrected times, they won the first race and were quicker than second-placed 'Oi!' by 17 seconds on times adjusted for handicap. The team look set to dominate again in 2013, although race two of the day brought them only a fourth place finish, yielding to Ray Roberts' OneSails Racing team.
Ten super-fast craft competing in the IRC1 class were headed by familiar leaders Foxy Lady 6. Their nearest rival from last year's King's Cup, EFG Bank Mandrake, finished fourth in the first race. This class plays host to the Royal Malaysian Navy entry, Utarid, which managed a fifth-place finish. Race two saw foxy Lady rule the class also - staking an initial claim in eventual class honours.
IRC2, a class which this year features several Russian entries all racing popular larger variants of the Beneteau First type of boat, will see close racing between the aforementioned Eastern European entries versus two Australian and one Japanese boat. In the first race, it was the Japanese who bested all competitors. Yasuo Nanamori and his Karasu team put in a great display in last year's competition, and are beginning again this year in similar form. IRC2 race two was won by Karasu also, ahead of Peter Sorensen's 'Fujin.'
Last year's lightning-quick Ichi Ban skippered by Matt Allen finished as runner-up in its first race, behind new team Red Kite 2 in the IRC3 class.
Conditions have been very good today with overnight rain keeping itself at bay, setting the scene for a week of superb competition.
The Phuket King's Cup Regatta will be held from November 29 to 6 December, 2013.
Seahorse Sailor Of The Month
Last month's winner:
Franck Cammas (FRA)
Once seen mainly as a talented big multihull specialist, the world is continually having to revise its opinion of this compact French superstar. Earlier this summer Cammas dominated the Tour de France on a M34. Last year he closed out a dominant Volvo Ocean Race win at his first attempt. Most recently he crushed his rivals at the Little America’s Cup on the back of a typically well judged technical programme. And throughout this time the former Jules Verne champion is successfully campaigning a Nacra F17...
This month's nominees:
Bora Gulari (USA)
Attention to detail was a major contributing factor when Bora Gulari won his second Moth world title in Hawaii last month... that and some brilliantly consistent sailing in challenging tactical conditions. Gulari was so determined to ensure every element of his Mach 2 Moth was as low drag as was humanly possible that he bought a 3D printer in order to make a multitude of slinky micro fairings
Ray Davies (NZL)
The quiet hero of America’s Cup 34 did not return to New Zealand with the trophy but he did take back an even further enhanced reputation for unflappable sailing genius. Dean Barker’s tactician of choice never blinked in the increasingly arduous battle against Oracle, although his body language in the latter stages of the event gave an indication of how the tables had turned in performance. A mighty fine showing nonetheless
Seahorse Sailor of the Month is sponsored by Musto, Harken McLube & Dubarry. Who needs silverware, our prizes are usable!
Cast your vote, submit comments, even suggest a candidate for next month at seahorsemagazine.com/sailor-of-the-month
To subscribe to Seahorse Digital £30 for one year with discount promo code SB2 click www.seahorse.co.uk/shop/digital
Eileen Ramsay - The Queen Of Yachting Photography
Eileen Ramsay was at the centre of a unique period in yachting history, and this wonderful book, featuring her classic photography, celebrates an extraordinary woman and her extraordinary subjects. Eileen's heyday was between 1950 and 1970 - a time when eccentrics ruled, records were there for the setting, and women weren't often to be found behind the lens.
But Eileen established herself as one of the greatest yachting photographers of her time, taking famous portraits of sailing icons like Francis Chichester and Eric Tabarly, Olympians, including Rodney Pattisson and Keith Musto, and historic pictures from the first Observer Singlehanded Transatlantic (OSTAR) Races.
Her unique archive records the explosive growth in dinghy and offshore sailing during post-war years, and includes pictures of the first Enterprises, Mirrors, Ospreys, Optimists and the first America's Cup 12 metres Sceptre and Evaine.
Eileen, now into her 90s can remember just about every photograph she has taken and relate an anecdote or story about each one. Many of these memories are also recorded in the book.
Eileen Ramsay - the Queen of Yachting Photography, is a spectacular celebration of a pioneering photographer and a fascinating time in yachting history.
160 pages, 123 classic pictures. £25 + postage & packing
2014 ORC Worlds
Kiel, Germany: The 2014 ORC World Championship held off Kiel, Germany next August is already building momentum only two weeks into the opening of the online entry system.
To date almost 40 teams from eight countries have already registered with the organizers at Kieler-Yacht Club, thus nourishing hopes for a racing fleet of over 100 yachts to fight on the waters of the Outer Kiel Fjord for world championship titles awarded in each of three different classes. Competitive teams from over a dozen nations are expected to come to Kiel.
Among these is Vincenzo de Blasio's NM38 Scugnizza from Italy, the reigning ORC World Champion in Class B, and a past ORC European Class B Champion in 2012. Scugnizza will be returning to the Baltic after winning their first World championship in 2012 in Helsinki, and for 2014 they will be pursuing an unprecedented third World title.
One of the top entries amongst the larger Class A yachts is also from Italy: Giorgio Martin's TP52 Aniene will set out to win their first World Championship title after succumbing to fellow Italian TP52 Hurakan in this year's Worlds in Ancona. Aniene also has the credentials to win, being the ORC European Class A Champion in 2012.
But the fight for gold could well turn into a close competition of the spectacular TP52 yachts, since this year's ORC European Class A title holder, Thomas Nilsson's Trucknor Wolfpack from Norway will also be in the game, and so will Sweden's Blixt Pro Sailing, who was the 2012 Worlds Class A runner-up.
ORC Announces New Improvements For 2014
Milan, Italy: At its Annual General Meeting held in Muscat, Oman, the Offshore Racing Congress (ORC) reviewed its activities and policies for 2013, one of its most successful years to date: to the beginning of this month there was an almost 15% increase in ORC International and ORC Club certificates over 2012, with over 8200 certificates issued worldwide. 2013 also saw a record number of 60 participants at this year's ORC European Championship in Sandhamn, Sweden, and it was the third consecutive year of having over 100 entries at the annual ORC World Championship, held this year in Ancona, Italy.
With this strong report card ORC is ready to take on the New Year with several improvements to its rating system for 2014. The ongoing research done by the International Technical Committee (ITC) this year found a few areas of improvement to be implemented for next year into the Velocity Prediction Program (VPP) that lies at the heart of the ORC rating system.
The changes were made both from ITC's own research and from recommendations made by countries using the ORC rating system. In general, this year's VPP was found to work well for most constituencies, so only small adjustments were suggested to improve the accuracy of the system. Initial test runs of the VPP have revealed only modest changes for the new season
The full set of Minutes from the ORC AGM can be found at www.orc.org/meetings
Since 1969, ORC has provided the most scientific and transparent VPP-based rating system in the world, used to create fair racing among a broad variety of boat types.ORC Rating products and services are used in 35 countries around the world, and ORC organizes the annual ORCi Offshore World Championship, sanctioned by the International Sailing Federation (ISAF).
Full list of changes at www.orc.org
Sail Fast and Multi-Task
The Volvo Ocean Race has always been about the crews competing. There were a total of 11 people onboard each Volvo Open 70 and there will be nine onboard each Volvo Ocean 65 in the 2014-15 edition, and 12 for an all female team.
Nine or 12 people including an Onboard Reporter to tackle precisely the same challenge - to sail around the world as fast as possible for nearly nine months.
"Eight is a good number for a crewed race - it allows you to do two watches of four," said race director Jack Lloyd. "We've limited the number to 11 for a female team. 11 plus an OBR makes 12 so we can still use a 12-person life raft. And eight people plus an OBR in a 12-person life raft will still be safe."
"Skippers will be looking for people that can drive the boat fast," added Lloyd. "I don't think there will a navigator as such anymore - he or she will have to be in the watch system like everybody else.
"We will probably end up with more helmsmen. We'd still need trimmers and bowmen, but they should be able to drive fast. There are lots of young sailors driving fast boats right now, especially in Olympics, but these need to be balanced with offshore experience.
In an effort to encourage younger sailors to take part in the race, all teams include two Under 30s. And as in the previous two races, each team must have an Onboard Reporter at all times.
The "Open" crew size will be 8 plus 1 non-sailing multimedia reporter.
Mixed teams (with no more than five male sailors) will be able to race with 9 plus 1 non-sailing multimedia reporter.
All women's teams will be able to race with 11 sailors plus 1 non-sailing multimedia reporter.
Each team will have to race with 2 Under-30s crew members at all times.
No weight limit on the crew.
Ramsgate Performance Sailing Suit - The Swiss Army Knife Of Sailing Suits
More than 22 years of experience and expertise are behind every functional garment designed by Marinepool. Cutting edge technology, optimized down to the smallest detail. Developed, tested and chosen by some of the world´s finest sailors and worn on the fastest yachts on the planet like giant trimaran Spindrift2, the MOD70 Oman Air and other leading offshore teams.
Marinepool's new Ramsgate performance sailing suit takes fabric innovations to the next level. Ramsgate is entirely made from Dermizax® NX membrane which is renowned for minimum weight, extreme breathability, highest waterproofness and ultimate elasticity. Indeed, the utilization of this NX membrane in sailing clothing is absolutely unique since the creator of the membranes Toray supplies Marinepool exclusively with fabrics made to the innovative NX formula.
Crucially, important but usually contradicting qualities are incorporated in one product without compromise. Despite ultimate breathability and enormous elasticity of the fabric, Ramsgate is extraordinarily durable and robust and indeed the perfect choice for the demanding conditions of ocean sailing when the going gets tough.
Ramsgate jacket and trousers are available in two colours: orange and dark grey. Ramsgate convinces with a very dynamic, fashionable and attractive design that simultaneously meets the demands of professional sailing due to intelligent features. These include for instance highly abrasion resistant reinforcement patches on shoulders and sleeves, reflecive patches by 3M, a high offshore collar, an adjustable hood in signal yellow, smart eyelets and loops to fix equipment as well as a separate intelligent YKK zipper system for the integration of an optional fleece into Ramsgate jacket.
The new Ramsgate by Marinepool. Design. Technology. Passion.
Monday Morning Rush? Not Quite!
Photo of Miranda Merron and Halvard Mabire by Jean-Marie Liot / DPPI / TJV2013. Click on image to enlarge.
A sticky, light winds finish was not really what was wanted by the Class 40 duos which finished over the course of Monday morning in Itajaí, Brasil. One of the tightly knit groups which have both endured and enjoyed their close rivalries down the second half of the 5450 miles Transat Jacques Vabre race course from Le Havre had only very light overnight winds which dragged out the final miles for six or eight hours of additional suffering.
The trio, Solidaires en Peloton, BET1128 and Fantastica, compressed in the gentle airs, but although the Italian duo on Fantastica, Stefano Raspadori and past class winner Pietro d'Ali, got to within 1.5 miles of long time rivals BET1128, Sam Manuard and Gaetano Mura were still able to cross the line 17 minutes for 12th ahead of Fantastica in 13th.
At a little after 0916hrs this morning (local time) Victorien Erussard and Thibaut Vaschel had lead the that Monday Morning 'rush', finishing 11th.
As the mid-fleet finishers recover from what all continue to describe as a relentless, one sided speed course - 20 days on port gybe as one skipper reflected - most of the recent group are pleased to have finished but not too enamoured with their results.
Earlier yesterday evening Britain's Miranda Merron and her French partner Halvard Mabire secured their 9th but after being up to third on Campagne de France, they really struggled after the head blew completely off their medium spinnaker after Madeira. Merron, completing her fourth Transat Jacques Vabre, rued the loss of their kite which they had only just managed to fix and set just before the finish, but also reflected she would have liked to have seen the race restart in Roscoff, rather than start in time order of finishing.
But, she smiled, having got the spinnaker finally fixed 'It is a shame we don't have another couple of weeks to get back into it'
Class 40 finishes:
1. GDF SUEZ (Sebastien Rogues-Fabien Delahaye) : 20d 21h 41' 25''
2. Tales Santander 2014 (Alex Pella-Pablo Santurde) : 21d 01h 22' 15''
3. Mare (Jorg Riechers-Pierre Brasseur) : 21d 03h 21' 55''
4. Watt and Sea-Region Poitou Charentes (Yannick Bestaven-Aurelien Ducroz) : 22d 08h 14' 46''
5. Groupe Picoty (Jean-Christophe Caso-Aymeric Chappellier) : 22d 10h 26' 47''
6. SNCF Geodis (Fabrice Amedeo-Armel Tripon) : 22d 10h 54' 39''
7. ERDF-Des pieds et des mains (Damien Seguin-Yoann Richomme) : 22d 12h 14' 14''
8. Vaquita (Christof Petter-Andreas Hanakamp) : 22d 13h 39' 33''
9. Campagne de France (Halvard Mabire-Miranda Merron) : 22d 23h 47' 47''
10. Phoenix Europe (Louis Duc-Stephanie Alran) : 23d 02h 40' 07''
11. Solidaires en peloton (Victorien Erussard-Thibaut Vauchel-Camus) : 23d 10h 02' 05''
12. BET1128 (Gaetano Mura-Samuel Manuard) : 23d10h 29' 48''
13. Fantastica (Stefano Raspadori-Pietro D'Ali) : 23d 11h 43' 40''
Eighty One... A Laser Master
Click on image to enlarge.
Robert Scheidt proved last week that age is no barrier to success in Laser racing and this week at the Laser Masters World Championships in Oman, Japan's Haruyoshi Kumera is defying his 81 years to tread the same path.
It is only every four or five years that he attends a Laser Masters - his last competition was in Halifax in Canada in 2009 but he has been racing Lasers since 1985 and taking part in the Laser Masters all that time.
His best result, he says proudly, was at Melbourne in 1999 when at the age of 67 - already competing in the Great Grand Master fleet - he finished second.
His fitness regime comprises a programme of daily squat training and push ups, swimming and Nordic walking as well of course as his Laser racing though he only managed to get in his boat around five times this summer.
Back home, he sails out of the Ashiya Marine Centre, a community sailing centre at Ashiya City between Osaka and Kobo where there is a large fleet of Lasers. In total there are 600 Laser racers in Japan, six of whom are competing in Oman and his commitment to the class has seen him in charge of Japan's Laser Class Association as President.
After two days racing, the octogenarian was lying in 11th place overall in the Radial Great Grand Masters fleet, 20 points behind 76 year old leader Peter Seidenberg from America who won the last race after an exciting tacking duel with Australian Robert Lowndes on the final upwind leg to the finish.
All eight fleets had to stay patient as the sea breeze took its time to fill in but race management finally started them at 2pm and managed to fit in two races as wind nudged over 10 knots.
Racing continues on Tuesday at 12.00pm with two races scheduled.
Full results and live blog at: omanlaserworlds2013.com
KRYS Ocean Race Postponed To 2016
Due to the difficulty of mobilising the competitors in this complicated economic environment, the organiser and partners (MOD SA, Krys Group, Brest) are postponing the second edition of the Krys Ocean Race until 2016 (it was originally scheduled for May 2014) and moving to a four-year cycle, alternating with the Route du Rhum.
The conditions to guarantee an event that aims to be the first transatlantic race 100% for multihulls were not met. Supported by the race partners, the Opticians Krys and the City of Brest, and buoyed by a first successful edition in 2012, when nearly 350,000 visitors came to the race village in Brest, the organisers had ambitious goals for this second edition on both a sporting level and as mode of communication. With six months to go until the event, there was still too much uncertainty hanging over this second edition in terms of participation, particularly among the MOD70. The organisers have already initiated discussions with other multihull classes to expand the fleet and create a new event dedicated to oceanic multihulls...This will be the format for the next edition in 2016.
Beautiful classic schooner built in 1922 in Belgium as fishing vessel and now completely refitted in Denmark to the highest standard and equipped with latest technology including RECKMANN hydraulic reefing systems for all sails! Very easy to handle fo a small crew due to bow- and stern thrusters. Nearest airport for inspection is Hamburg. Ship's history with refit list available on request!
Brokerage through Sea Independent BV: www.yachtworld.com/seaindependent/
Complete listing details and seller contact information at uk.yachtworld.com
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