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

Reece Scores Another Hardy Cup Win For Squadron
Photo by Raoul de Ferranti. Click on image to enlarge.

For the second consecutive year, a representative of the host club, the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron, has won the prestigious Hardy Cup Under 25, ISAF Grade 3 match racing event on Sydney Harbour.

Jordan Reece (22) and his Estate Master crew of Max Vos (19), Milly Bennett (19) and Jaiden Stevens (21), headed the leader board from day one, winning 24 matches and losing just three in a dominating demonstration of match racing in small boats.

Their tactics were near perfect, as were their sailing techniques in handling the Elliott 8 sports boats in a wide variety of breezes. Today's semi-finals began in very light conditions but freshened to 8 knots from the south-east, enabling RSYS race officers to complete the entire program on schedule.

For Jordan, victory came with his fifth attempt to win the Hardy Cup, donated by eminent yachtsman and Squadron member Sir James Hardy to promote the skills of match racing among youth sailors.

Jay Reece's win in the Hardy Cup 2014 follows the victory by another RSYS skipper, David Chapman. Since the first Hardy Cup match racing in 2001, Squadron teams have now won eight times, three of those victories going to Michael Dunstan in 2002, 2005 and 2006.

Sir James Hardy watched the three day event from his classic gaff-rigger Nerida and it must have given him great pleasure to see his concept of youth match racing bearing fruition.

Final top four:
1. Jordan Reece, Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron, AUS
2. Jay Griffin, Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, AUS
3. David Gilmour, Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, AUS
4. Chris Steele, Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, NZL

A Whole New Ball Game
Mark Turner and Bruno Dubois have been waiting a long time for this opportunity, the chance to compete once again in the Volvo Ocean Race. The Briton and the Frenchman both competed as sailors in the 1989/90 edition. Now they return to the race as co-managers of the Dongfeng Race Team. Turner has earned a reputation for running a tight ship. He is only interested in projects that can wash their face financially, with the enduring success of the Extreme Sailing Series the best example. Turner believes that the Volvo Ocean Race's shift to one-design Volvo Ocean 65s now makes it a commercially attractive event for the first time in its long history.

'I did the race as a sailor a very long time ago and it has always been a passion of mine as an event,' says the executive chairman of OC Sport. 'We have tried in a major way to put a Volvo campaign together in the last two cycles. But we found it too difficult to raise the money that you needed for the expensive boat development process that was involved. We were involved in pitching for some campaigns in the last Volvo, and the minimum was a €25-30 million-plus budget. Even then you knew that you weren't the biggest spender. In the previous format that extra money always had a significant impact on your performance.' This time, says Turner, the numbers stack up.

'For this race I think you can run a project at €14-15 million, about half of what was required before. But more important is the removal of that risk of having a slow boat and your entire project being put in jeopardy because you just got it wrong in some of the design decisions. For an event that is fully commercial - it's all about sponsors, there are no private owners here - that creates a greater level of certainty.

Full article in Seahorse magazine:

2013 Blue Water Medal To Jeanne Socrates
The Cruising Club of America has selected Jeanne Socrates (Ealing, West London, England) to receive the Blue Water Medal for her completion of a solo nonstop circumnavigation of the world on her third attempt.

The Blue Water Medal was first awarded in 1923 and is given "for a most meritorious example of seamanship, the recipient to be selected from among the amateurs of all nations." The award will be presented at the annual CCA Awards Dinner on March 7, 2014 at New York Yacht Club in Manhattan.

After 259 days alone and unassisted at sea, Socrates sailed past the Ogden Point breakwater in Victoria, on July 8, 2013 at 2:26 a.m., completing her nonstop goal and becoming the first woman to sail nonstop around the world (on a route that started and finished in North America) and the oldest woman to sail solo nonstop around the world.

Socrates is raising money for Marie Curie Cancer Cure, a British program that offers free home nursing for terminally ill cancer patients. Links to the charity can be found by visiting her website,

Race The RORC Caribbean 600 On A Volvo 70!
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:

Oracle Team Usa Names Design Team
The America's Cup winner, ORACLE TEAM USA, has announced its design team for the 35th America's Cup.

The design team features 11 Americans, as Oracle Team USA looks towards homegrown design and engineering expertise to successfully defend the next America's Cup.

Among the returnees from previous campaigns, wing design manager Scott Ferguson (USA) is back for a third successive America's Cup with Oracle Team USA. A collegiate All-American sailor, Ferguson has 30 years of design experience and is an expert in masts, spars, and now wing sails.

Among those new to the team are Len Imas (USA) and Hal Youngren (USA), who worked with Team New Zealand during the previous Cup, contributing to the design of a Kiwi boat that came within one race of winning it all.

The Oracle Team USA design team met as a group for the first time in San Francisco this week and is eagerly awaiting the release of the new America's Cup Class Rule next month.

The Oracle Team USA design team for the 35th America's Cup:

Paul Bieker (USA), Dimitri Despierres (FRA), Len Imas (USA), Hal Youngren (USA), Aaron Perry (USA), Bryan Baker (USA), Juan Vila (ESP), Scott Ferguson (USA), Christophe Elberding (GER), Thomas Hann (GER), Steven Roberts (FRA), Jose Luis Vela (ESP), Tom Speer (USA), Eric Jolley (USA), Andrew Gaynor (USA), Ian Burns (AUS), JB Braun (USA), Kurt Jordan (USA)

Carbon Monoxide Warning To Boat Owners Following Double Tragedy
A safety bulletin has been issued to warn boat owners about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning following two deaths in North Yorkshire in the UK.

Before going to bed, the skipper (aged 26) and the crewman (aged 21) had lit the grill of a butane gas cooker fitted in the wheelhouse in order to warm both the wheelhouse and the adjacent sleeping area.

Eshcol was not fitted with a carbon monoxide alarm.

Safety Issues

1. Gas cookers are designed for cooking, not domestic heating. Accommodation areas need to be heated, especially during the winter months and, for this, appropriate, purpose built heaters are required.

2. Fossil fuel burning appliances, such as cookers, need to be checked and maintained to ensure they are in good condition. A yellow flame indicates poor combustion, resulting in an excess of carbon monoxide that, in a poorly ventilated space, can quickly build up to lethal levels.

3. Carbon monoxide is a lethal gas, which has no smell, no taste, is colourless and is extremely difficult for human senses to detect. Crew need to be vigilant and recognise the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning, which can include: headaches, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, tiredness, confusion, stomach pain and shortage of breath.

4. Carbon monoxide alarms are not expensive and should be fitted. When selecting a carbon monoxide alarm, preference should be given to those marked as meeting safety standard EN 50291-2:2010, which are intended for use in a marine environment.

The MAIB is carrying out an investigation into the two deaths and will publish a full report in due course.

The Amazing Tea Clipper Race
Click on image to enlarge.

My oil painting pictures the Tea Clipper Ariel in the southern Indian Ocean, southeast of the Island of Madagascar during the famous 1866 tea race from Foochow (modern Fuzhou) China, to London, England. At this point of this amazing event, Taeping held a slender 24 hour lead over Fiery Cross with Ariel and Serica another 24 hours further behind.

Serica had taken a course closer to Madagascar looking for more of the wind that was increasing with the approach of a front coming off the mainland of southern Africa. Ariel kept Serica just in view with an hour on, hour off telescope watch on the mainmast, topgallant yard, to ensure that she didn't gain an advantage. This watch was kept posted during daylight hours, throughout the race! -- Jim Bolland

More on the race history at A Brush With Sail

2014 International Moth World Championship Entries Open At HISC
Entries have now opened for the 2014 International Moth World Championship which takes place at Hayling Island Sailing Club 18th-25th July 2014. The International Moth UK and Open National Championship will take place at HISC on the 16th & 17th July 2014. Entry is open to all boats of the International Moth class.

The intention is to run the racing outside of Chichester Harbour from the west side of Hayling Bay however if conditions prevent this the racing will be run within Chichester Harbour at high tide which allows for a large race area with no risk of running aground.

The IMCA is very fortunate to have secured the services of Tim Hancock as Principal Race Officer. Tim is an International Race Officer and, amongst many other National and World Championships to his name, ran the Finn and Star course at the 2012 Olympic Games in Weymouth.

Inspirational Speaker - Sir Robin Knox-Johnston - Solo Sailing Pioneer And Adventurer
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston is one of Britain's best known sailors. He first came to fame after setting out from Falmouth, England on 14th June 1968 aboard his tiny 32ft ketch Suhaili and returned 312 days later to become the first person to sail single-handed non-stop around the world.

It was a time when the Flat Earth Society was still in existence, and even seasoned yachtsman thought it to be an impossible feat. For everyone else it was; Robin was the sole finisher among 9 starters to complete this 30,000 mile supreme endurance race, organised by the Sunday Times newspaper.

Unlike earlier sailing pioneers like Francis Chichester and Alec Rose, who both received knighthoods after completing solo circumnavigations with one stop, Knox-Johnston was awarded only a CBE. He says now it was because he had criticised the state of the Country under the Wilson Government when he got home.

A likeable maverick and consummate seaman, Knox-Johnston has continued setting records ever since, becoming an example to thousands of young yachtsmen and women who have followed in his wake.

In 1977/8 he skippered the British maxi Heath's Condor to line honours on two legs of the Whitbread Round the World Race.

1994 saw him co-skipper the giant catamaran ENZA New Zealand with the late Peter Blake to take the Jules Verne Trophy in 1994 for the fastest circumnavigation around the world - a feat that finally won him and Peter their knighthoods.

In 2006/7 and at the age of 68, he set out on yet another solo circumnavigation and finished a highly credited 4th in the Velux 5 Oceans race. Uniquely, Knox-Johnston has been voted UK Yachtsman of the Year three times, was named ISAF sailor of the Year in 1994, and in 2007 was one of the first inductees into the ISAF Hall of Fame.

As Chairman of Clipper Ventures plc, Sir Robin now inspires others to race around the world in a fleet of identical yachts.

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston is represented by PPL Inspirational Speakers

Other PPL speakers include round the world sailors Sir Chay Blyth, Dee Caffari MBE, Tony Bullimore and Mike Perham, America's Cup skipper Harold Cudmore, Olympic coach Jim Saltonstall, Atlantic adventurers Tom McClean and Geoff Holt MBE, Captain Williams Wells, powerboat record breaker Dag Pike, and sailing journalists Bob Fisher, Barry Pickthall and Rob Salvidge.


Turkey Signs Up For 2K Team Racing
Two exciting days of racing and coaching in Italy with the Italian 2K Association has cemented Turkey into the ever widening 2K Circuit.

Turkey joined the Italian 2K Clinic at Santa Marinella, just outside Rome. With no less than 50 sailors from all around Italy participating the racing and enthusiasm of the sailors was totally convincing.

Istanbul Sailing Club will now be the venue of the first step across the Bosphorus for the 2K Tour.

Racing will be in the Club's matched fleet of Platu 25's close to the Asian shore and the fantastic new facilities.

The next 2K event will be in Gran Canaria at the end of February before moving on to Monte Carlo.

Industry News
The Bermuda Race Organizing Committee has announced that the Pantaenius Group has joined its distinguished stable of sponsors for the 2014 Newport Bermuda Race. Pantaenius American Yacht Insurance is the official lead sponsor of the 2014 Newport Bermuda Race's web site tracker.

Pantaenius is a leading provider of insurance to sailing and motor yachts, with more than 40 years of experience and 80,000 insured clients and vessels worldwide. Over 200 employees are focused on delivering excellence in the field of yacht insurance in nine offices in Europe, North America, and Australia. Pantaenius covers yachts 27 feet (8.23 meters) in length or greater for all types of yachting risks, including worldwide navigation.

The next start of the 635-mile Newport Bermuda Race is on Friday, June 20, 2014, off Castle Hill in Newport RI.


Recently launched performance sailwear company Hudson Wight is supporting the sailing charity Sail 4 Cancer at a range of UK regattas this year. Participants at a number of events where Sail 4 Cancer is the chosen charity will be able to win a set of Hudson Wight HW1s by entering the charity's various prize draws, competitions and event raffles. The charity will be providing a range of Hudson Wight prizes at industry regattas ranging from the Profile Cup and Legal Cup organised by Britannia Corporate Events, to the Henry Coanda Challenge and Torbay Week, one of the oldest regattas in the country.

Sail 4 Cancer has also joined the Hudson Wight Affiliate Scheme that allows supporters buying their sailing clothing and accessories on the Hudson Wight website to use the Affiliate Code: SAIL 4 CANCER, giving them a 10% discount on the purchase and the charity will then receive 15% of every sale.

For more information on Sail 4 Cancer please visit: or visit the Hudson Wight website at:


Amsterdam RAI, organiser of the 2014 ICOMIA World Marinas Conference (WMC) in Istanbul, Turkey, has released the list of speakers for this year's event.

From June 2-4, more than 40 experts will present their views to delegates, including Gary Groenewold of Westrec Marinas, Matthew Bate of the Dogus Marinas Group and Julian Goldie of the Yacht Harbour Association (TYHA).

The theme of this year's conference is 'Marinas into the future'.

The 2014 ICOMIA World Marinas Conference runs from June 2-4 at Swissotel The Bosphorus in Istanbul.


The 2nd Kuwait Yacht Show opened on February 2, with double the exhibition space compared to the 2013 edition and treble the number of exhibitors.

The show at the Marina Mall venue in Kuwait City features 50 boats on water and land.

Gulf boatbuilders included Gulf Craft, Majesty Yachts and Samawy Marine from the UAE, and local Kuwaiti builder Gulf Master.

Kuwait is one of the largest boat markets in the Gulf.

The show runs until February 7 at the Kuwait Marina Mall. Plans are well in hand to repeat the event in 2015.


Germany's Bavaria Yachts claims to have set a new show sales record at boot Dusseldorf last month. According to Constantin von Bulow, Bavaria's new CEO, the company enjoyed a "staggering result" with 102 customers deciding to buy a Bavaria sailing yacht or motorboat during the nine-day show.

"Already during the autumn boatshows in Europe we have seen a positive tendency towards our products at Bavaria," says von Bulow. "However, with 102 clear orders on the boot we have surpassed our own expectations. It has shown that it was the right decision to present our complete range of products in Dusseldorf along with our 20 traders from 12 nations.

"In only 15 months we have put more than 10 new sailing yachts on the market and have provided our motoryacht lines with some attractive equipment packages," he adds. "This is appreciated by the market now."


Nautor Holding, which includes the brands Nautor's Swan and Camper & Nicholsons Yachts, has recently appointed Randy Coleman as Area Manager for the United States. Mr Coleman will be based in Florida, working closely with Nautor's commercial team in Florence, Italy.

On the occasion of the Miami International Boat Show, from February 13-17, Nautor will host sea trials on a Swan 80FD and Camper & Nicholsons' Velsheda 50, followed by a gala evening to present the SwanLine and Camper & Nicholsons Yachts.

The Last Word
One of the drawbacks of English is you can't spell things by hearing them. -- Bill Nye

Editorial and letter submissions to

Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see