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

The Tiger Roared
Ignoring the dire weather forecasts of extreme wind, rain, snow, and high tides, 166 boatloads of winter warriors from all over the UK came to Rutland for this year's 2 day 'Challenge' for the John Merricks Tiger Trophy. Half of the proceeds of the event go to the Trust, established after John's death to support youth sailing. This was also the final regatta of the closely fought GJW Direct Sailjuice Winter series and SailRacer provided their Sail Trackers to monitor the situation, thankfully sponsored by Rule 26.

The largest British lake avoided the high tides and snow and the sun shone all weekend but it could not avoid the strengthening south easterly wind on Saturday.

The comment afterwards from competitors was about the "hairy downwind legs with big gusts hitting hard". This decimated the fleet - with 45 boats finishing from over 100 starters. Then AP over H (racing postponed return to shore) was flown after race 1 and no more racing was possible on Saturday.

The weather forecast on Sunday was always better than Saturdays and so it proved with perfect sailing conditions for this 2 hour pursuit race in 15 knots of breeze with the odd gust to 20.

Dennis Merricks was on hand to make the presentations and the Tony Everard Trophy (Winner on Saturday) was awarded to Matt Burge and Richard Wagstaff (Fireball-Poole YC). All the other results were dependent on the pursuit so the overall winner of the Tiger Trophy and winner of the John Merricks Pursuit Trophy was Ed Connellan and Will Alloway (29er Rutland SC) sailing for the first time together.

The Junior Trophy (Under 16) was awarded to James Grummett and Daniel Budden (29er Burwain SC) and the Shere Khan Trophy went to Andy Dring and Simon Laken (Laser 2000 Rutland SC). The Lady Tiger Trophy was initially awarded to Lottie Harland (Laser Radial Burghfield / Hayling Island SC), also JMST award winner in 2011, who was one of a small number of girls to finish both races but after further checking, Val Millward (Challenger Rutland SC) was declared the winner.

Top 10 results
1. Ed Connelan & Will Alloway (29er Rutland SC)
2. Tim Riley & James Taylor (420 Warsash SC)
3. Andy Smith & Tim Needham (505 Notts County)
4. Matt Burge & Richard Wagstaff (Fireball Pool YC)
5. Nathan Batchelor & James Clark (Fireball - Tynemouth SC)
6. Christian Birrell & Sam Breary (Fireball)
7. Henry Wetherell (Laser Beaver SC)
8. Andy Dring & Simon Laken (Laser 2000 Rutland SC)
9. Dave Hall & Paul Constable (Fireball Thorpe Bay YC)
10. Ian Dobson & Ben Ainsworth (Fireball SMVC)

Fleet Prizes
420 - Tim Riley & James Taylor (Warsash SC)
29er - Ed Connellan & Will Alloway (Rutland SC)
Fireball - Matt Burge & Richard Wagstaff (Poole YC)
Moth - Simon Hiscocks (Weymouth PNSA)
Laser - Henry Wetherell (Beaver SC)
Laser Radial - Daniel Wigmore (Grafham Water SC)
Merlin Rocket - Richard Whitworth & Emma Norris (Parkstone & Hollingworth
Musto Skiff - Richard Stenhouse (Rutland SC)

Superyacht Challenge Antigua
Lighter shifty conditions provided for a dramatic finale to the 4th edition of the Superyacht Challenge Antigua. The overall winner being decided on the last leg of the final race and by just two seconds.

Unfurled nailed the pin end of the line with just a second to spare, the German Frers 112' sloop was at full pace and the crew knew they had a chance of overall victory. Before the final six mile beat, Unfurled was up to fourth in pursuit of the leaders and played the current in Rendezvous Bay to great effect to stay in touch with the bigger, more powerful yachts and take the lead. A smart, tack bare away set, at Nelsons and Unfurled extended the lead and managed to hold off the chasing pack. Unfurled took the gun and then had to wait for the time correction to be factored in, the result was astonishing. The Superyacht Challenge Antigua delivered one of the closest finishes in the history of superyacht racing.

126' Schooner, Gloria finished the regatta in style scoring their second bullet to elevate the team into third overall, but only just, Gloria was tied on points with 180' Hoek designed ketch, Marie. Gloria took the podium place ahead of Marie by virtue of two first places in the regatta.

182' Dykstra Schooner, Adela was runner up to Gloria in Race 4, assuring the the Adela team of second place overall, just a point ahead of both Marie and Gloria. In the last race, Adela beat Unfurled by just 2 seconds after time correction. Significantly if Unfurled had beaten Adela, the 112' sloop would have tied for an overall victory for the regatta. However, the overall winner of the 4th edition of the Superyacht Challenge Antigua was the 102' Ketch, Marama by a single point from Unfurled.

EFG Sailing Arabia - The Tour: Fleet Arrives In Bahrain
The countdown to the start of 2014 EFG Sailing Arabia - The Tour has begun with the 6 crews touching down in Bahrain to make their final sailing preparations.

The fleet of identical Farr 30 boats will be based at the Amwaj Marina in Manama until February 9 when they set off on the first leg to Doha in Qatar, a distance of 100 nautical miles which will be an opportunity for all crews to lay down vital markers in the region's only long distance offshore sailing race.

One of the teams that are meeting for the first time in Bahrain is Sidney Gavignet's professional team. They have done zero training together but despite that, have emerged as the boat to beat in the 760nms endurance race around the Gulf due to the sheer expertise and experience on board, including two of Oman's young sailing prospects Ali Al Balushi and Mohammed Al Mujaini.

Messe Frankfurt Sailing Team, the team comprised mainly of students, are the most prepared of all with more than eight months of training behind them, but like all the crews flying in from a chilly northern Europe, they will have to do a lot of adjusting before they set off under a hot sun on February 9th.

The battle of the students Team Delft Challenge versus Messe Frankfurt Team is set to be become the main talking point of the 2014 EFG Sailing Arabia

Race The RORC Caribbean 600 On A Volvo 70!
RORC Caribbean 600 Monster Project Do you dream of sailing a Volvo 70? The keel fully canted. Flying a huge spinnaker with six of your crewmates grinding on the pedestals in tropical sunshine. Feeling the power as the boat accelerates down a wave at 25+ knots in warm Caribbean winds...

This could be you!

Monster Project, Team Russia's boat (Kosatka) in the 2008 Volvo Ocean Race, is the only Volvo Open 70 available for charter - a unique opportunity for amateur sailors to experience these amazing racing machines!

The RORC Caribbean 600 is the headline offshore racing event in the Caribbean. With a 600 mile course around 10 islands, it's an epic race to rival the Fastnet - but much warmer!

Join us on Monster Project for our RORC Caribbean 600 program:

- Tuesday 18 through Saturday 22 February: pre-race training at Falmouth Harbour in beautiful Antigua
- Saturday 22 February: Welcome Party, Antigua Yacht Club
- Sunday 23 February: final boat preparations / rest day
- Monday 24 February: RORC Caribbean 600 starts at 1050h
- Friday 28 February: Prize-giving Ceremony, Antigua Yacht Club

Monster Project's RORC Caribbean 600 package includes:

- Race entry
- Berthing fees
- Pre-race training
- Professional Racing Skipper and Crew
- Food and bottled water during sailing
- Monster Project race clothing
- Safety equipment (loan)
- Wet-weather clothing (loan)

Can't make it to the RORC? Monster Project also operates Caribbean, UK, European and Trans-Atlantic Racing and Adventure Sailing charters for groups, corporates and individuals.

See the Calendar on our website:

World Ice and Snow Sailing... To Russia!
WISSA was supposed to be in Quebec this year. We had a written proposal from a qualified organizer, but for some reason, they had to back out.

Picking up the short notice mantle, out steadfast friends from Russia put together a World Championships against all odds. Against the backdrop of the Putin/ Sochi games, and in an environment where sponsorship funds are scarce as hen's teeth, our friends in Russia are saving the WISSA games by hosting them in St. Petersburg, Russia. It has not been easy for them, and WISSA owes them a great debt of gratitude for rescuing what could have been a disastrous situation. -- WISSA President William Tuthill

WISSA 2014 Winter Surfing World Championships
Monday, 2014-03-03 through Sunday, 2014-03-10


RYA Push The Boat Out
Following the huge success of RYA Push the Boat Out in both 2012 and 2013, the RYA has announced that 'Push the Boat Out' is back for 2014.

RYA 'Push the Boat Out' will take place over the weekend of 17-18 May and will see sailing clubs across the country holding open days and inviting those who live locally to come and 'have a go' at sailing and windsurfing with an experienced sailor.

Whether you are a regular sailor, new to the sport or simply want a day out with the family, Push the Boat Out provides the perfect opportunity for everyone to get out on the water and celebrate a national weekend of sailing.

"Push the Boat Out was a huge success last year and it was fantastic to see so many clubs taking part, encouraging their local communities to get out on the water and showing people just how easy it is to get involved in the sport" said RYA Club Support Advisor Jackie Bennetts

Information at

Rio 2016 Test Event Notice Of Race Published
The Notice of Race for the Aquece Rio - International Sailing Regatta 2014 has been published.

Aquece Rio is the first of two 'Test Events' for the Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition and will welcome sailors across the ten Olympic sailing events from 2 to 9 August 2014. The regatta venue is the Marina da Gloria with racing taking place inside and outside the Guanabara Bay.

The Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition will take place at the Marina da Gloria, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and will feature 380 athletes competing across ten events.

Racing is scheduled to take place from 8-18 August 2016 and the competition format for all events is fleet racing.

The Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition will take place at the Marina da Gloria, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and will feature 380 athletes competing across ten events.

Racing is scheduled to take place from 8-18 August 2016 and the competition format for all events is fleet racing.


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

Seahorse Magazine

A whole new ball game
Andy Rice talks to Mark Turner about returning to the Volvo Ocean Race after 25 years

Not so new kids
A look at Milan-based Advanced Yachts

Behind the scenes - Part 1
We spend some time with the technical gurus at Harken in an effort to get to grips with what was really going on out of sight onboard USA 17

A fundamental shift - Part 1
C-Class and AC72 design star (and also designer of some slippery rowing shells) Steve Killing traces the emergence of the full foiling catamaran

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Industry News
More exhibitors and more and larger yachts are highlights of the 2014 Dubai International Boat Show (DIBS) being held on March 4-8. This growth in the region's leading boat and marine leisure event is seen as reflecting the growth in the local market both for superyachts and smaller craft.

In respect of exhibitors, the organisers indicate that there will be 840 companies and brands on show, representing a 12% increase over 2013. In terms of yachts and boats there will be a total of over 430 on water and land. Of these, 19 superyachts, including the largest yacht ever for the show, will be at DIBS. The largest so far is said to be one of the 50 largest yachts in the world and other superyachts will include a 41m (135ft) from Gulf Craft and a 24m (78ft) from Sunseeker. In total there will be 30 yachts over 21m (69ft).

As usual the event will be held at the Dubai International Marine Club at Mina Seyahi. It is anticipated that the show will be attended over five days by some 26,000 visitors from 70 countries. Among these, the organisers say, will be 5,000 VIPs and key buyers.


Turkish Airlines will continue their partnership with Stena Match Cup Sweden after signing a new two-year sponsorship deal with the event. The biggest annual sailing event in Sweden is now planning its 20th anniversary.

Last year they entered the sport of sailing as sponsors of Stena Match Cup Sweden and ow they have signed a new sponsorship deal, continuing their commitment the coming two years.

"We are very pleased with the result from last year's edition of the event - we were able to reach out to new customers and got to be a part of an international high level sailing event. We have been associated with world-class athletes and sports events for many years and that is exactly what Stena Match Cup Sweden is all about", says Mustafa Tanriverdi, General Manager of Turkish Airlines Gothenburg.

Since Stena Match Cup Sweden started in 1994, the event has become one of the biggest annual public events in Sweden as well as one of the most respected sailing events in the world. Stena Match Cup Sweden attracts crowds that are rarely seen in sailing and Marstrand's unique race arena makes it one of the pinnacle events on the Alpari World Match Racing Tour.


The Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RS) has announced plans to implement a new system of classifying yachts with the aim of accelerating craft registration procedures. The system will allow the classification of yachts built both in Russia and abroad by increasing the number of vessel classes.

Local media reported that the new system is expected to increase the compatibility of the European Union and Russian regulations which apply to the yachting industry.


Marine electronic manufacturer Furuno has established Furuno Italy S.r.l, a wholly-owned subsidiary company in Italy. The firm has been in operation since January 1, 2014.

Until last year, ARIMAR S.p.A. has been handling the marketing and sales activities as well as technical service for Furuno as uts national distributor in Italy.

The new subsidiary, Furuno Italy (FIT), will be responsible for the sales activities as well as technical service in the local market.


Plymouth's Mayflower Marina has been named as the 'British Coastal Marina of the Year' at the recent London Boat Show. These were the first marina awards for leading trade association for marinas, The Yacht Harbour Association (TYHA).

Mayflower Marina is an independent marina, owned and operated by Sailport PLC. It has berthing for around 400 boats, boatyard services and an extensive range of onshore facilities including the popular Jolly Jacks bar and restaurant. In 2012 Mayflower Marina was awarded TYHA's coveted 5 Gold Anchor award for maintaining high standards of facility and excellent customer service.

The award was made by CEO of the Royal Yachting Association, Sarah Treseder and collected by marina manager Charles Bush.

The Last Word
Someone once told me that time was a predator that stalked us all our lives. But I rather believe that time is a companion who goes with us on the journey and reminds us to cherish every moment because they'll never come again. What we leave behind is not as important as how we've lived. -- Captain Jean Luc Picard

Editorial and letter submissions to

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