Brought to you by 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

VOTE for your favourite bar in the Wight Vodka Favourite Yachting Bar competition:

Audi Melges 20 World Championship
Photo by Joy Dunigann / International Audi Melges 20 Class. Click on image for photo gallery.

Audi Melges 20 World Championship Key Largo, Florida, USA: The second day of the 2013 Audi Melges 20 World Championship, hosted by the Ocean Reef Club started with a brief postponement and ended with a blast. Travis Weisleder aboard Lucky Dog/Gill Race Team still sits firmly in the lead, ahead of second overall Jason Michas on Midnight Blue by a whopping 30 points. In third overall, behold is Jim Richardson's world-famous Barking Mad.

The first race of the day, Race Four in the series, commenced under 12-15 knots of breeze, sunny skies and moderate seas.

As the Race Committee put wheels in motion for Race Five, the last and final race of the day, the breeze increased further to 15-18 knots at the finish with gusts over 20 mph.

Five races of the ten World Championship race series is now complete. Upon the completion of a sixth, each team will discard their worst score. This truly will change the leaderboard landscape not to mention the points spread.

It is still yet to be known as to whether or not racing will take place on Friday as the breeze is forecasted to be very close, possibly above the class wind speed limit. If racing commences, it is scheduled for Friday, December 13 at 11.00. If not, the Race Committee may strive for four races on Saturday and implement an earlier start time.

Top five after five races:

1. Travis Weisleder/Scott Nixon, Lucky Dog/Gill Race Team, 21 points
2. Jason Michas/Mark Mendelblatt, Midnight Blue, 51
3. Jim Richardson/Terry Hutchinson, Barking Mad, 39
4. Marcus Eagan/Marc Eagan, Cajun Underwriting, 55
5. John Taylor/Bill Hardesty, Ninkasi, 61
6. Jeff Ecklund/John Kostecki, STAR, 61
7. Richard Davies/Charlie McKee, Section 16, 62
8. Alessandro Rombelli/Paul Goodison, STIG, 62
9. Marc Hollerbach, Jonathan McKee, Fu, 65
10. Bob Hughes/Morgan Reeser, Heartbreaker, 65

Top Three Corinthian after five races

1. Marcus Eagan, Cajun Underwriting
2. John Brown, Blind Squirrel
3. Paul Currie, Wild Deuces

An Unusual Strategy...
In an interview published in a leading Australian newspaper, the CEO of of the Hamilton Island Yacht Club challenge, which is operating under the name of Team Australia, has said they will stay out of the bidding war for the leading Australian proponents of the most recent foreign Cup campaigns and will build a new young team from scratch.

IainMurray, appointed last month to lead the Oatley family's challenge, is confident that Australia has enough elite sailing talent to go around, despite the loss of key figures to foreign America's Cup teams already.

Olympic gold medallist Tom Slingsby has re-signed with Oracle Team USA after serving as strategist for its winning campaign this year, while fellow Olympic medallist Glenn Ashby has committed to Team New Zealand, and Murray rated the chances of luring Australia's winning skipper Jimmy Spithill away from Oracle as 'slim'.

But he noted that Spithill was 19 when he made his America's Cup debut and therefore the next such talent was 'a kid of 15' at the moment.

'We are going to let a lot of that go past us,' he said of the rush to sign America's Cup stars. 'There's a lot of kids who haven't had that opportunity that we want to give that opportunity to. With the right coaching we think they can do just as good a job.'


Citing The Australian:

Fine Art Classic Boat Prints
Fine Art Classic Boat Prints A selection of limited edition classic, historic and contemporary sailing prints spanning the beginning of yachting photography to current images of classic yachts, printed on fine art paper for the home, office, boardroom and reception areas.

Each edition within the Classic Boat range is limited to 100 numbered prints, individually produced using the Giclee fine art printing system. This matches high quality archival standard inks with selected 300gsm fine art photo rag textured paper to produce outstanding black & white and colour images.

Limited edition prints are supplied unframed and deliverd in art tubes.

We also offer a mounting and framing service, but due to the irregular size of many of these prints, prices have to be quoted individually and orders can ony be taken over the telephone or via e-mail.

Subjects include

- America's Cup
- Contemporary Classics
- Cowes
- Dinghies
- Dragons
- Eileen Ramsay
- Historic Collection
- Keelboats
- Sir Francis Chichester

Available from 10x8 to 60x40 ins.


Phone (UK) 44 (0)1243 555561

A great gift idea:

Last day for ordering for Christmas delivery is December 16.

Clipper Race Leaders Reach Sydney At End Of Race 5
Henri Lloyd crossed the finish line into Sydney, Australia at 0315 local time (UTC+11), claiming its fourth consecutive podium result and its first win in the Clipper 2013-14 Round the World Yacht Race.

The team celebrated its win with Champagne on arrival to Rushcutters Bay which further consolidates the team's overall lead in the race series.

Just under three hours later, OneDLL secured second place after crossing the Race 5 finish line at 0614 local time (1914 UTC). "We had a good start in Albany and that continued with competitive sailing with Henri Lloyd and Derry~Londonderry~Doire," explained skipper Olly Cotterell.

The third podium was taken by Chinese entry Qingdao which crossed the finish line at 0911 local time (2211 UTC); provisionally securing a podium position overall. Skipper Gareth Glover said: "That was one of the toughest races so far, as the weather was constantly changing so we had to change tactics on the spot."

The Restart From Hobart
Hobartians will see a spectacular re-start of the international fleet contesting the Clipper Race around the world on January 1, only days after the twelve Clipper 70s finish the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

The Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania today announced plans for the re-start at 3pm on Wednesday, January 1, off Castray Esplanade. The Club will conduct the start of the leg from Hobart to Brisbane on behalf of Clipper Ventures.

Spectators will get a bonus view of the yachts as they will sail a short windward/leeward leg on the River Derwent before heading down the river to the Iron Pot and into Storm Bay.

Depending on the wind direction, the RYCT plans to set a windward rounding mark near the John Garrow Light off Lower Sandy Bay, with the boats then heading back to the starting line mark off Castray Esplanade before heading off to Brisbane.

After the Clipper 70s finish the Sydney Hobart they will be berthed together at the end of the Elizabeth Street Pier in Hobart's historic Sullivans Cove.

The Sydney Hobart will be Race 6 of the Clipper Race around the world, with the Clipper 70s starting with the rest of the 95-strong Sydney Hobart fleet, from two lines, on Boxing Day, December 26. -- Peter Campbell

Canadian Team For Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup
Hoping to bridge an almost 30 year gap in Canadian Offshore racing, Sail Canada has announced its intention to lodge a challenge for the 2014 Commodores' Cup by forming a three boat team of Canadian sailors.

"The likely make up of the team will draw on sailors from right across the country, with serious interest being expressed by Halifax, Toronto and Vancouver sailors," confirms Paddy Boyd, Executive Director/Directeur General, Sail Canada/Voile Canada.

"Canada's last foray into offshore team racing was at the 1985 Admiral's Cup, where the three boat team of Pachena, Amazing Grace and Impetus crossed the Atlantic to race against 17 other countries. Since then, offshore team racing and Canadian involvement in such events has waned, but recently, there has been an upsurge of interest. IRC, the rating system used in the Commodores' Cup has a strong following in Lake Ontario and there are plenty of competitive IRC rated boats available for charter on the South Coast of England, reducing the cost to compete quite considerably," continues Boyd.

The Commodores' Cup 2014, based in Cowes, Isle of Wight will start on Saturday 19th July 2014 and follow a similar format to previous years. A mixture of inshore races in the Solent, an offshore race in the English Channel and a race around the Isle of Wight will finish with a final race and prize-giving on Saturday 26th July 2014.

The Commodores' Cup started in 1992 and is an international three-boat team event using the IRC Rating system and is open to boats rated between 1.020 and 1.230, with only one boat rated above 1.150. or contact the RORC Race Office:

G.L. Watson - The Art And Science Of Yacht Design
G.L. Watson The genius of yacht designer G.L. Watson shines through Martin Black's profusely illustrated biography. Watson was born in 1851, the year the schooner America led the cream of British racing yachts round the Isle of Wight. By age 22, he opened the world's first yacht design office in Glasgow.

Designing four challengers to bring the America's Cup home might be a lifetime's work for mere mortals, but during the Golden Age of yachting G.L. Watson became widely recognised as the greatest all-round designer.

From racing cutters and schooners heavy with clouds of canvas, via pro-bono pioneering work on lifeboats, to sumptuous steam yachts - the super yachts of their day - and America's Cup challengers, Watson's adage: straight is the line of duty, curved is the line of beauty... was consistently evident.

Perhaps uniquely, the book also describes the emergence of the modern independent designer, of any discipline. Watson's career spanned a seminal period of transition from instinctive and evolutionary craft work to the application of disciplined technological innovation, using new materials and tank testing.

It's a passionate combination of knowledgeable sleuthing, high production values, sheer good looks and a rattling good yarn.

496 pages, over 300 images, €89 including worldwide shipping.

Delux Nappa leather-bound limited edition, €300 including worldwide shipping.

Nationality Rule May Come Back For Cup
Russell Coutts has hinted it is likely a nationality clause will be reintroduced for the next America's Cup.

Discussions are well under way between Oracle Racing and challenger of record Team Australia, representing the Hamilton Island Yacht Club, over what shape the next event will take. And it appears there is a lot of support for stronger nationality rules in the next event.

The nationality clause was abolished following Team New Zealand's successful Cup defence in 2000, which paved the way for Coutts to link up with Swiss syndicate Alinghi, headed by billionaire Ernesto Bertarelli. The move prompted a huge furore in New Zealand and in the international sailing community, and since then the nationality debate has remained contentious in the sport.

In this year's event the only stipulation was that the hulls of the boats had to be constructed in the nation of the challenging yacht club, but there was no nationality restriction on sailors involved. That is why Oracle, which represents San Francisco's Golden Gate Yacht Club and the United States, had just one American - Rome Kirby - in their 11-man crew, while Swedish team Artemis had no Swedes in their team.

But in an interview with Yachting World magazine, Coutts said there is strong support in the Cup community for a nationality clause. -- Dana Johannsen

New Zealand Herald:

Gruber Holds Oceanic Championships Lead Despite Penalty
Despite obtaining a penalty after breaking the start in Race 6 today, World Champion Florian Gruber from Germany held his lead finishing top after Day Two of the Kiteracing Oceanic Championships at Leighton Beach, Fremantle, Australia.

British youngster Olly Bridge has moved into second fastest position and Maks Zakowski from Poland into third after consistent sailing in light wind conditions averaging 11.4kn and high temperatures in the mid 30's.

Tomorrow the course racing will be followed by the first heat of the Freestyle Jam, from approximately 3pm, where competitors aim for the best tricks and big air to score the best points.

The medal series races will be fought out on Saturday and Sunday with A$30,000 in prize money up for grabs in the course racing and A$5000 for the Freestyle competition.

The Kiteracing Oceanic Championships is officially sanctioned by the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) and the International Sailing Federation (ISAF). 100 championship points are awarded to the event winner.

Top 3 Men after 7 races:

1. Florian Gruber, GER, 7 points
2. Olly Bridge, GBR, 13
3. Maks Zakowski, POL, 13

Top 3 Women after 7 races:

1. Aga Grzymska, POL, 9
2. Ariane Imbert, FRA, 11
3. Nuria Goma, ESP, 24

Launceston To Hobart Yacht Race
For the Derwent Sailing Squadron's seventh annual National Launceston to Hobart Yacht Race 2013 a quality fleet, full of offshore sailing talent, will line up later this month.

Entries have come from Victorian, Northern and Southern Tasmanian yacht clubs and include eight past handicap division winning skippers of the 285 nautical mile race, with the 2013 edition starting from Beauty Point on December 27.

Sailing in its first L2H race will be the winner of the 1993 Sydney Hobart Race, John Mills and Ian Douglas' Lyons 40 Nexedge, from Bellerive Yacht Club. Back in 1993 the yacht raced as Cuckoos Nest and more recently as Bombora.

Also entered is Lawless, a 31-footer which placed second overall in the 1984 Sydney Hobart, skippered by its designer and then owner, Victorian John Green. Lawless will be skippered in the L2H by Stephen McElwee from the Port Dalrymple Yacht Club at Beauty Point.

Heading the fleet is two-times line honours winner The Fork in the Road, skippered by former Olympic sailor and dinghy world champion Garry Smith. Not only is Smith looking for back-to-back line honours but also has his sights set on the race record.

Helsal 3 set the benchmark in 2011 with an elapsed time of 1 day 16 hours 28 minutes and 18 seconds for the 285 nautical mile offshore race around Tasmania's East Coast.

The Fork in the Road's time last year was 1 day 17 53 minutes 00 seconds and Smith is aiming to better that time, and Helsal 3's record, in this year's race. The boat will also have a new medium-light headsail specifically made for possible use in the light winds often experienced sailing south through the Mercury Passage. -- Peter Campbell in


David Lovegrove to be ISA President
As the Irish Sailing Association prepares for a fundamental review, succession plans for Irish Sailing Association president Niamh McCutcheon reached an advanced stage at a board meeting of the national authority on Tuesday evening.

The Irish Times has learnt that Howth Yacht Club's David Lovegrove is the outgoing president's nominee to take over next spring when her term ends.

Lovegrove is a past commodore of his north Dublin club and a former director of the ISA. An active sailor, he is best known as one of the country's leading International Race Officers, responsible for managing international championship-grade events as well as local regattas.

The Puppeteer class sailor wouldn't be drawn on what his priorities might be though he points to recent ISA board decisions as a source of confidence for the future. "One thing I hear a lot of in clubs is 'what does the ISA do for me?' when it actually does quite a lot. The clubs are our customers and we need to deliver and be more proactive."

Letters To The Editor -
Letters are limited to 350 words. No personal attacks are permitted. We do require your name but your email address will not be published without your permission.

* From Euan Ross: Guardian journalist Donald McRae, in his recent piece on Ainslie and the possible English Cup bid, propagates the misconception that "Britain has never come close to lifting the cup" and implies that a sea change may be in prospect. McRae should do his homework. Famously, Britain had a fast boat in 'Shamrock IV' and a clearly faster boat in 'Endeavour 1'; and so, like TNZ in 2013, we came within a single race of lifting the Cup in both 1920 and 1934.

And there were other promising British challenges that fell by the wayside following 'own goals' of stunning bravura. We always had the designers, we usually had the sailors, we often had the technology and we sometimes had the resources. Britain has been unlucky or just plain perverse as often as we have been hopelessly uncompetitive.

Overall, the British experience is nothing to be ashamed of in the phylum of unsuccessful challengers. On the other hand, if the rumours concerning the format of the next contest are true and the AC72 remains the 'weapon of choice', few would bet on England coming anywhere near the Cup, let alone lifting it, this next time round. Caveat emptor!

Featured Brokerage
Featured Brokerage Boat 1991 Hoek Design Classic Ketch. EUR 980,000. Located in Edam, Netherlands.

Built by the top Dutch yard Engelaer in 1991, Kim was one of the first of many epic retro classics from the boards of Hoek Design. With her low profile, long overhangs and beautiful sheer line, this 70 ft ketch is an excitingly pretty yacht. Moreover, her classic appearance is combined with an ultra-modern underwater body with wing keel and elliptic spade rudder. She has travelled the world in classic style.

In 2006, Kim was completely refitted by another leading yard, Holland Jachtbouw. The expert craftsmen modified the interior and she is now perfect for chartering, sleeping up to six guests in four separate cabins. An entirely new saloon and comprehensive equipment upgrade ensures that your on board life will be very pleasant indeed.

Brokerage through Hoek Brokerage BV:

Complete listing details and seller contact information at

The Last Word
If you can quote the rules, then you can obey them. -- Tony Soprano

About is a highly powerful and effective global marketing solution for the boating industry. With half a million new and used boat listings, offered across the globe by manufacturers, brokers, dealers and private advertisers, it is the most comprehensive site in the World. Over 1.4 million boating consumers visit our sites every month, generating up to 16.5 million page views, with over 500,000 of these visitors coming from within Europe. Whether you are providing a product or service or selling new or pre owned boats, offers an extensive and varied range of solutions, tailored to suit all marketing budgets offering extensive local and international coverage.

Editorial and letter submissions to

Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see

Search the Archives

Phoca Gallery Search
Search - Categories
Search - Content
Search - News Feeds
Search - Web Links

Our Partners

Seahorse Magazine

Wight Vodka

Robline Ropes


Ocean Safety

Yacht Club Monaco

St Thomas YC

Grenada Sailing Week

Antigua Sailing Week