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:

Dark Horse Arrives
Beau Geste has arrived in Sydney ready to take on the Rolex Sydney Hobart - Darren McManaway, Click on image for photo gallery.

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race The new boat every Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race competitor aiming for line honours and overall glory has been waiting to see has arrived in town and sailing master Gavin Brady warns "We've arrived ready and probably more prepared than anyone else."

Beau Geste, the 80 foot Botin design that everyone is talking about, was ordered by Hong Kong business identity, Karl Kwok, following the near-demise of his previous Beau Geste.

Brady and the Rolex Sydney Hobart race crew, minus Kwok, sailed the yacht from New Zealand into Sydney Harbour last evening after leaving Auckland on Tuesday. Brady was bemused when people questioned: "What took you so long?"

The Kiwi sailor, whose resume includes five America's Cups, 10 Hobarts and Volvo Ocean Races and match racing titles, said: "We didn't deliver the boat to Sydney for the race, we raced the 1400 nautical miles here - that's two and a half Hobarts".

"We tested everything; our watch systems, sail changes, we put reefs in the main, shook them out, we did everything we would normally do racing a boat, down to getting the milk right in people's tea."

Beau Geste arrived in Australia with no damage on her maiden voyage. "The worst that happened to us was hitting a sunfish 20 minutes into our voyage - hopefully it was the last one. We left it with a headache," Brady said.

The Rolex Sydney Hobart, will be broadcast live on the Seven Network throughout Australia, the Australia Network throughout the Asia Pacific Region and webcast live to a global audience on Yahoo!7 from 12.30pm until 2.00pm on Boxing Day. -- Di Pearson

Small Boat... Big Dreams
Nick Cannar is undaunted about skippering the smallest boat - Wilparina - in this year's Rolex Sydney Hobart.

As if skippering the smallest boat in the fleet isn't daunting enough, Wilparina's owner Nick Cannar will also be embarking on his first keelboat contest when he takes-on the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race aboard the 33-footer.

It'll be a bouncy and a long race aboard the S&S 34 - and Cannar knows that.

But what's important to the 66-year-old is getting his four dinghy sailing mates and one experienced offshore crewman safely to Hobart.

"It's a huge challenge,'' Cannar admits. "I've never raced a keelboat before; we've cruised, but never raced.

"As part of the qualifier, we crewed the Tasmanian entry in the race, Martela, up to Sydney.

"We had 50 to 60 knots of breeze; it was a shock but it gave us a good understanding of what it will be like."

You'd be hard struck to find a better boat to start the learning curve of offshore keelboat racing.

The American designed and Australian made yacht is as sturdy as they come.

The yacht's association boasts that they've completed more long distance voyages, especially solo, than any other design.

Most Australians might not know it, but the S&S 34 features prominently in the country's maritime history.

It was the boat of choice for Jesse Martin and Jessica Watson on their endeavours to become the youngest to sail non-stop, solo and unassisted around the world. It was also the boat of choice for Jon Sanders too - and for the same reason.

Clipper 68s Prepare for Rolex Sydney Hobart Race
The two Clipper 68 yachts which are to be permanently located at the new Clipper Race training base in Australia are currently preparing for their first major event - The Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race (RSHYR) 2013.

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston welcomed the crew aboard the two yachts berthed at the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia (CYCA) ahead of their training leading up to next week's famous race.

He will participate as navigator aboard CV10 with Skipper Jim Dobie, a dual citizen of the UK and Australia, and Chief Instructor at the new base in Sydney. The other Ed Dubois design 68 is CV5 under the leadership of former Clipper Race skipper Piers Dudin.

Ocean Safety's Magic Kru Sport and R10 Combo
Ocean Safety A couple of vital safety products from Ocean Safety give a massive boost to the chances of survival at sea when they are combined into one technically advanced formula and worn by each crew member. They are the Kannad R10 AIS Survivor Recovery System (SRS) and the Kru Sport Pro lifejacket. The Kru Sport Pro is designed to have the R10 fitted to it, so there is nothing else to think about when putting on a lifejacket.

That's easy to do because the Kru's waistcoat design makes it very comfortable and barely noticeable to wear. Plus there's even more to the Kru Sports Pro than just keeping afloat. The Kru can be fitted with the innovative and compact R10 to make a completely integrated personal safety system. The R10's size means it can be also carried in a pocket. The R10 alerts AIS receivers on vessels within a four mile radius with precision position information, so if a crew member falls overboard, the alert will transmit both onboard the yacht, and also on other vessels in the area.

The combination of Kru Sports Pro and R10 is a winning one for providing the best possible safety back up. Every crew member on five of the six yachts in the last Volvo Ocean Race wore them, proof that the combo is an elite choice.

GAES Christmas Race
The 38 GAES Christmas Race finished today in the bay of Palamos Spain wih double Olympic medallist Slovenian Finn sailor claiming the Absolute Winner title, Trofeo Manuel Albalat. The absolute youth winner -Trofeo Miguel Company- was Ukrainian 470 women team Anna Kyselova and Anastasiya Krasko.

Sun and an excellent SW Garbi wind, average 15 to 20 knots, provided excellent conditions for the medal races. All races could be sailed according to the schedule and the top ten competitors in each class enjoyed battling for victory on the last day of racing in Palamos.

Top three final places by class (results site lists only the skipper)

Laser Standard
1. Jesus Rogel, ESP, 37 points
2. Martin Evans, GBR, 41
3. Joaquin Blanco, ESP, 42

Laser Radial women
1. Tatiana Drozdovskaya, BLR, 16
2. Agata Barwinska, POL, 20
3. Monica Azon, ESP, 28

Laser Radial men
1. Mon Canellas, ESP, 31
2. Hector Dominguez, ESP, 32
3. Jerzy Bajko, POL, 49

1. Max Clapp, GBR, 30
2. Paula Barcelo, ESP, 39
3. Ewa Romaniuk, POL, 47

470 men
1. Onan Barreiros, ESP, 23
2. Jordi Xammer, ESP, 25
3. Leboucher Pierre, FRA, 29

470 women
1. Anna Kyselova, UKR, 26
2. Agnieszka Skrzypulec, POL, 40
3. Lemaitre Maelennn, FRA, 40

1. Julien D Ortoli, FRA, 30
2. Lauri Lehtinen, FIN, 39
3. Jonas Warrer, DEN, 44

1. Nil Mas, ESP, 8
2. Cas Van Dongen, NED, 12
3. Mimi El-khazindar, GBR, 17

1. Lin Ea Cenholt, DEN, 24
2. Phillipp Muller, GER, 29
3. Ida Marie Baad, DEN, 31

1. Vasilij Zbogar, SLO, 23
2. Deniss Karpak, EST, 24
3. Alejandro Muscat, ESP, 44

Onion Patch Series Turns 50
2014 is the 50th anniversary of the biennial Onion Patch Series. In 1962, the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club donated the Onion Patch Trophy for the series and the first competition was held in conjunction with the 1964 Newport Bermuda Race. In 2014, the series will be sailed for the 25th time. Join us in Newport June 14, 2014 for the first of three events, the New York Yacht Club 160th Annual Regatta, and help make the Silver Anniversary Series the biggest and best ever.

All yachts racing in the 2014 Newport Bermuda Race in the St David's Lighthouse Division or the Gibbs Hill Lighthouse Division are invited to compete in the fantastic Onion Patch events. The series consists of racing in the New York Yacht Club Annual Regatta, the Newport Bermuda Race and the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Anniversary Regatta. This is a hard-fought series sailed over three consecutive weeks in June. The Onion Patch is one tough series, a challenge to yacht, skipper and crew to prevail in three spectacular events and venues. When you plan your 2014 racing schedule, be sure to include this tough triathlon of sailboat racing.

More at

Cream Rising To The Top At Big Winter Events
After the first two events of the GJW Direct SailJuice Winter Series, Ben Schooling leads the way in his Musto Skiff. Just 6 points behind Schooling, who won the Fernhurst Books Draycote Dash, is the Merlin Rocket of Jasper Barnham and Graham Sexton, while a 2nd place at the Badger Ales Datchet Flyer has put Nathan Batchelor and Sam Pascoe's Fireball in 3rd overall.

The series has attracted some of the UK's finest dinghy talent, including Endeavour Champion Nick Craig in his Devoti D-1, Fireball World Champion Tom Gillard sailing a Solo, and 49er Olympic medallist Simon Hiscocks in his International Moth. Winner of last weekend's Datchet Flyer was a newcomer to the Fireball class, Luke Patience. Aided and abetted by national championship-winning crew Richard Anderton, however, the London 2012 silver medallist in the 470 class soon got to grips with the quirks of the Fireball.

Now in its fifth season, the GJW Direct SailJuice Winter Series has pioneered the use of Great Lakes PY handicap numbers to create a more responsive form of handicapping which reflects actual performances at these large multi-class winter events. So far the first two events have seen a broad spread of classes doing well, although a 'one-two' at Datchet suggests the Fireball is still a particularly strong candidate in strong winds.

The Brass Monkey takes place on 27 December, closely followed by the Grafham Grand Prix on 29 December. Then it will be the inaugural Oxford Blue on 4 January which, like the Datchet Flyer, will be using live GPS tracking. To look back at the tracking coverage from last weekend, go to - click on the 'Datchet Live' button near the top left-hand side to replay the battles that took place over the weekend.

Top 10 Overall after first two events of the GJW Direct SailJuice Winter Series 2013/14

1. Musto Skiff - Ben Schooling
2. Merlin Rocket - Jasper Barnham
3. Fireball - Nathan Batchelor
4. Solo - Tom Gillard
5. Laser - Craig Williamson
6. Solo - Michael Sims
7. Laser - Daniel Wigmore
8. Blaze - Myles Mence
9. Musto Skiff - Ian Martin
10. Enterprise - Ann Jackson

Wight Vodka Favourite Yachting Bar
Wight Vodka A surge in voting in the last week has brought the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club into second place in this year's Wight Vodka Favourite Yachting Bar competition. Heavy voting for RBYC and for the Boatyard Bar & Grill has shaved 20 points off One Bar's still formidable lead. At press time the top three with percentages of boats (just under 2500 votes to date!):

One Bar, Playa Blanca, Lanzarote - 44.9%
Royal Bermuda Yacht Club - 27.5%
Boatyard Bar & Grill, Annapolis, Maryland - 15.8%

All fine bars, all ten. Your humble narrator would be delighted to take a month off and travel to all... but work and a daughter's upcoming college tuition fees beckon. I'll console myself with one of these:

Winter Wight Heat the following:

- 1 shot of Wight Vodka
- 3 shots of cloudy apple juice (or cider in the US)
- Dash of cinammon or cook with cinnamon stick
- Dash of Cointreau or Drambuie

Vote for YOUR favourite at

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing Recruits Young Aussie Sailor
Abu Dhabi, UAE: Australian Luke Parkinson has been recruited by Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing. The 23-year-old Perth sailor is joining the team skippered by Ian Walker in the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15.

Parkinson will be one of Abu Dhabi's Under-30s crew members. Turning 24 in February, this 49er sailor was selected by skipper Ian Walker after coming highly recommended within sailing circles and passing a series of testing trials.

For the young Aussie, who goes by the nick-name Parko and is qualified in sail making, first aid, sea survival and as a radio operator, this appointment is a "dream come true."

And life will certainly be tough for the young, single Aussie as he tackles the 39,379 nautical miles race starting in October 2014 from Alicante, Spain.

Parkinson will start teaming up with Walker in December. The two will sail the Sydney-Hobart race with legendary Aussie sailor Syd Fischer on board his 100-foot Ragamuffin.

2014 - 2017 : A Consistent Race Calendar For CLASS40
The skippers of the Class40 and their sponsors can rely on a stable program of races. A varied program, conceived to meet the "offshore" and "inshore" skippers expectations. A program in which sailors will chose the races they want to participate, based on their budget, their availability or the objectives of their sponsors.

2 - 5 May : Grand Prix Guyader
9 - 24 May: The Atlantic Cup
25 May - 1st June : Normandy Channel Race
22 - 29 June: Record SNSM & 1000nm solo-handed race between Saint-Nazaire, Spain, Ireland and back to St Nazaire
18 - 21 September : Worlds in Douarnenez
5 - 23 November : Route du Rhum

2015 (all dates TBC)
28 April - 1er May: Grand Prix Douarnenez
14 - 21 May: Normandy Channel Race
23 - 31 May: The Atlantic Cup
21 - 23 June: Record SNSM
4 - 26 July : Les Sables - Horta - Les Sables
16 - 23 August : Fastnet Race
1er - 29 November : Transat Jacques Vabre

2016 (all dates TBC)
27 mars - 23 avril : La Solidaire du Chocolat
28 avril - 1er May: Grand Prix de Douarnenez
15 - 29 May: The Atlantic Cup
19 - 21 June: Record SNSM
3 - 24 July: Quebec - Saint Malo
27 August - 4 September : Normandy Channel Race

2017 (all dates TBC)
4 - 7 May: Grand Prix de Douarnenez
13 - 24 May: The Atlantic Cup
25 - 27 June: Record SNSM
2 - 24 July : Les Sables - Horta - Les Sables
13 - 20 August: Fastnet Race
29 Oct. - 26 Nov. : Transat Jacques Vabre

Seahorse February 2014
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine

Seahorse Magazine

Terry Hutchinson is slumming it in Key Largo, Bora Gulari reveals the detail behind his success to Bill Goggins and Rob Cook offers a nice lateral twist for the next Cup planners

Chasing affordability
Andy Rice talks to project leader Alan Roberts about a new initiative in the International 14 Class

New broom
Oyvind Bordal interviews ISAF president Carlo Croce

A Gucci product
Sparbuilder Eric Hall traces the gestation of his company’s latest carbon rigging solutions

Special rates for Scuttlebutt Europe subscribers:
Seahorse Print or Digital Subscription Use Discount Promo Code SB2

1yr Print Sub for UK residents: €77 - £48 - $71 / Rest of the World: £65

1yr Digital Sub for £30:

Discounts shown are valid on a one year subscription to Seahorse magazine

Penalty Points For Clipper Race 5 Collision Damage
Race Director Justin Taylor has informed GREAT Britain skipper Simon Talbot of the Clipper Race Committee's decision to levy a two-point penalty against the team in relation to the damage caused to the yacht in a racing incident shortly after the start of Race 5 from Albany to Sydney on 3 December.

Justin Taylor said: "This is in relation to the collision just after the start of Race 5 and is allowed for in the Clipper Race's Sailing Instructions. This is a separate decision from the one made by the CYCA protest committee who found in favour of PSP Logistics and awarded them redress based on average points from the previous four races. GREAT Britain was disqualified at the same hearing by the Protest Committee.

"A penalty is appropriate in these circumstances in line with Clipper Race Sailing Instruction 29 in relation to boat damage."

The affect of this penalty is to reduce GREAT Britain's overall points to 39, but it remains in fifth place on the leader board.

Sold To The Man At The Front
Bob Fisher catches up with Bouwe Bekking who will be taking part in his seventh Volvo Ocean Race as skipper of Team Brunel in the new one-design Volvo Ocean 65.

Enthusiasm flows from every pore of this Dutch legend of ocean racing. Well beyond the first flush of youth, Bouwe Bekking is about to tackle the upcoming Volvo Ocean Race, his seventh involvement, at the age of 50. But he shrugs off the years by saying: 'I'm feeling young!' He looks it too.

Bekking's international sailing career started as a helmsman for a Dutch boat at the 1983 Admiral's Cup, at the time a pinnacle of the sport, but two years later he was back in Cowes as a driver aboard Philips Innovator in the Whitbread Round the World Race, finishing second overall on handicap. Bouwe's next foray into the race would come eight years later, when he was one of Dennis Conner's crew on Winston in the new 60ft water- ballasted class.

By this time Bouwe was hooked on the race and in 1997 he raced with Grant Dalton to finish second aboard Merit Cup. In the new millennium he stayed with Dalton to race Amer Sports One to third place in 2002 in what was now the Volvo Ocean Race following its change of ownership. The race changed three years later with the introduction of the Volvo 70 class and this time Bouwe, as skipper of Movistar, tackled a start- studded fleet in a race summed up by one crewman, who declared: 'I left my girlfriend, good food, a dry bed and a hot shower to hang around out here struggling with wet sails and 12 smelly guys and a pretty fragile raceboat...'

Not Sailing... But Just Stunningly Cool...
NASA has issued a new visualization of the events leading to one of the iconic photographs of the 20th Century - Earth rising over the moon captured by the crew of the Apollo 8 mission. The dazzling video was created at Goddard with recent data from NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) spacecraft and audio records of the 1968 event

Using photo mosaics and elevation data from Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO), this video commemorates the 45th anniversary of Apollo 8's historic flight by recreating the moment when the crew first saw and photographed the Earth rising from behind the Moon.


The video on Youtube:

Featured Brokerage
Featured Brokerage Boat 1983 IOR Racer MG RS 34. EUR 19,950. Located in Lagos, Portugal.

Yellow Bird is a famous racing boat on the Algarve for the last 20 years. She won a countless amount of prizes and she is still very competitive. The current owner had it for the last 8 years and spend a huge amount of money on her. in 2006 the rigging was changed from running back stays to aft pointed spreaders with single trimmable back stay. New chainplates had to be constructed. Rod rigging has been replaced for Dy-Form. This makes it an easy boat to handle. The hull was completely resprayed, a new main, genoa and spinnaker were added a few years ago and they are still in sound condition. It is optimised to IRC regulations (0.953) Tuff Luff fore stay, Rod Kicker. 4 winches, new jammers etc.

Brokerage through Bluewater Algarve:

Complete listing details and seller contact information at

The Last Word
Be thankful for problems. If they were less difficult, someone with less ability might have your job. -- James A. Lovell

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