Brought to you by Seahorse magazine, 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

Party Spirit Building In Antigua
Gonzalo Botin's Tales II (ESP) breaks the Class40 course record. Photo by Tim Wright, Click on image to enlarge.

At 0800 on Day Four of the RORC Caribbean 600, 17 yachts had completed the race and six yachts retired. George Sakellaris' American RP72, Shockwave was the overall leader of the race for the RORC Caribbean 600 Trophy, having set the benchmark corrected time of 3 days, 4 hours 16 minutes 38 seconds, with Bella Mente in second place at this time. 18 yachts still racing still have the ability to better that time to claim the overall prize.

For the second year in a row, the Class40 record for the RORC Caribbean 600 has been beaten. Gonzalo Botin's Tales II showed amazing speed around the course, breaking the 2013 course record set by Peter Harding and Hannah Jenner's 40 Degrees. Spanish entry, Tales II was over 3 hours quicker than the previous record, finishing the 600 mile race in an elapsed time of 2 days, 16 hours 37 minutes 52 seconds.

The Superyacht Class provided a titanic struggle between two giant schooners. Athos made a bold move yesterday, choosing to sail to the leeward side of Montserrat on the leg from St Marten to Guadeloupe. It paid off when they caught up with Adela as the two yachts approached the 'Stealth Zone' off the west side of Guadeloupe.

Ultimately Adela won the last leg to take Line Honours for the Superyacht Class and take the win on corrected time.

Piet Vroon's Dutch Ker 46, Tonnerre de Breskens 3, finished the race just after 4 am this morning, taking line honours for IRC One and setting the corrected time to beat for the class of 3 days, 10 hours 26 minutes.

Tonight, a sensational finish is likely in IRC Two. Antigua entry, Quokka 8, skippered by Bernie Evan-Wong, leads on the water, just 50 miles from the finish. Andy Middleton's British First 47.7, EH01 is just four miles astern and Peter Sowrey's British First 40, Lancelot II is six miles behind the leader. Lancelot II is leading the class on corrected time, but only by 40 minutes. Quokka 8 and EH01 should be much faster on the last 40 miles of the course - the beat back to the finish - so the result is too close to call, even just 50 miles out.

In IRC Three, Matt Brooks' Classic American S&S 52 Yawl, Dorade had a stunning day three of the race, opening up a lead of over 40 miles on the fleet by this morning.

Erick Clement's Open 40 Trimaran, Dauphin Telecom - Johnny Be Good was the first multihull to finish the race at dawn on Thursday 27th February after a gruelling two days and 19 hours at sea. -- Louay Habib

Portsmouth Number List For Year Ahead Released
The RYA Suzuki Dinghy Show (01-02 March) marks the release date for the RYA Technical and Racing Services department's Portsmouth Number list for the year ahead. The RYA is also pleased to announce a number of additional releases for 2014 which are set to enhance handicap racing around the UK for all clubs and their sailors.

In 2013 the RYA received 155 returns of which nearly 75 per cent came via PY Online with the remainder being sent in via traditional spreadsheets. The website counted data submitted from over 60,000 individual races, consequently increasing the statistical confidence the RYA has when it comes to ensuring the Portsmouth Number (PN) List reflects each class's performance as it's sailed around the country.

"With the movement of a class's handicap, there are always some complaints and questions and occasionally a smile or two", commented Bas Edmonds, RYA Technical and Racing Services Manager.

"What may seem like an established class with no amendments to its rules or equipment, may be confused to see its handicap change by a large margin when the boats performance hasn't moved. This can be for a number of reasons but is most likely down to the method of collecting data. The RYA now collects real race results and therefore has a clearer picture of how a boat performs. A class which was previously seen as sure fire winner is now more likely to be treated more fairly within a fleet", Bas explained.

Another exciting development to handicap racing is the release of the latest editions of Sailwave and HALs Race Results, both scoring programs that have supported adjustment methodology required to run the RYA's National Handicap for Cruisers scheme (NHC).

The modifications have been built into the scoring programs and any club wishing to take advantage of the upgrades should make sure they download the latest versions of either Sailwave or HALs Race Results.

For further information or if you don't use either Sailwave or HAL scoring programs then contact the Technical and Racing Services Department at

For more information on Portsmouth Yardstick visit -

For more information on the National Handicap for Cruisers visit -

Bacardi Cup at Bacardi Miami Sailing Week
Miami Florida, USA: Attracted by a highly-regarded race management team and the area's renowned racing conditions, elite sailors will again be on hand when the fifth annual running of BACARDI Miami Sailing Week (BMSW) presented by EFG Bank is held March 2-8, 2014, from the regatta headquarters at Kennedy Park in Coconut Grove. The six-day racing schedule is headlined by the Star class, which will have 57 boats on the starting line all fighting to win the 87th Bacardi Cup. On the last four days of the regatta, the Stars will share the Bay with competitors in the Audi Melges 20, J/70, Melges 24, Viper 640 and VX One classes.

There are 192 boats registered across the six one-design fleets, with competitors from 15 foreign nations (Australia, Bermuda, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Great Britain, Germany, Italy, Japan, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands and Ukraine) travelling great distances to compete against American sailors.

Star entries include:

2012 Star World Champion Xavier Rohart (France); 1992 Finn Olympic Silver medalist Brian Ledbetter (Medina, Wash.); 2003 Rolex Yachtsman of the Year Augie Diaz (Miami, Fla.); 2013 Star World Champion John MacCausland (Cherry Hill, N.J.); Paul Cayard (San Francisco, Calif.), America's Cup veteran and winner of the 1998 Whitbread Round the World Race; and Mark Reynolds (San Diego, Calif.), two-time Star World Champion (1995, 2000) and three-time Olympic medalist (1992 Gold,1988 Silver, 2000 Gold). In addition, Brazil's most well-known sailing siblings, two-time ('88, '96) Tornado Olympic Medalist Lars Grael and brother Torben Grael, the 1990 Star World Champion will race each other, as will another native of Brazil, Vince Brun (San Diego, Calif.), world champion in the Soling, Star, J24, Etchells and Melges 24 classes.

More information on the BACARDI Miami Sailing Week and the 87th BACARDI Cup is available at and

Dragon Grand Prix At Cannes
Britain's Lawrie Smith won the second race on the opening day of the Dragon Grand Prix at Cannes, to finish the day in sixth overall. After two races completed, Denmark's Lars Hendriksen and Jorgen Schonherr are tied on nine points for the overall lead. Hendriksen won the first race from Philipp Malte of Monaco with Thomas Muller of Germany in third.

Smith followed his 14th place in race 1 with victory in the second race ahead of Dmitry Samokhin of Russia with Schonherr third. 57 teams from 14 nations are taking part. -- Gerald New

Dragon - Grand Prix, Cannes FRA - Day 1 after 2 races (52 entries)
1. Lars Hendriksen, DEN, 9 points
2. Jorgen Schonherr, DEN, 9
3. Victor Folgelson, RUS, 11
4. Anatoly Loginov, RUS, 14
5. Lawrie Smith, GBR, 16

Children Of The Wind
Click on image to enlarge.

Simpson Bay, St. Maarten - February 27th 2014 - Talent and ability flourish in the Caribbean. Given the small size of population, seldom do the inspirational stories make it out of the small islands dotting the region. One such story has been fortunate enough to be documented and recognized at several film festivals around the world. Luckily for the residents and visitors of St.Maarten this film will be shown on island for the first time. Prepare to be moved by the 7 time award winning documentary "Children of the Wind". The 2014 St.Maarten Heineken Regatta will host a free movie matinee for the general public on Sunday March 9th at 4:00pm on Kim Sha Beach, before the evening festivities get going.

Co-creator and director Daphne Schmon explains "this moving film follows two brothers and a cousin's journey from humble fishing families on the tiny Caribbean island of Bonaire to become three of the best extreme freestyle windsurfers in history. Set against the backdrop of the 2011 Windsurfing World Cup on Bonaire, the film follows the boys over fifteen years as they transform not only their island but the face of the sport worldwide"

"We won 7 awards in the film festival circuit last year, including "Best Documentary," "Best Emerging Filmmaker" and "Best Original Score" at X-Dance, the world's premiere action sports film festival. Our success across diverse festivals like X-Dance and American Black Film Fest in Miami (where we were nominated for the CNN Best Doc award) proves that 'Children of the Wind' appeals to an audience far outside of the niche windsurfing market. Our film tells a human story, where windsurfing is really just a metaphor to show the power of sport in a kid's life -- particularly kids growing up in an underprivileged community."

Industry News
Veteran pro solo sailor Yannick Lemonnier has opened Quantum sail loft in Galway docks to service both the Southern and Northern Ireland sailing markets.

Lemonnier, a double handed Round Ireland record holder, says he will service and repair any type of sail; cruisers, racers, dinghies, windsurf, kitesurf and even windmill sails.

With an impressive floor area of nearly 450 sq.metres, the Galway harbour loft is capable of handling the largest sails such as for VOR70 or MOD70 racing yachts and operates collection points from Dublin and Cork.

The French sailmaker has an impressive sailing CV, having sailed in excess of 70,000 miles, mostly single handed or double-handed, and competed in five 'Solitaire du Figaro', 2 Transatlantic race double-handed "AG2R", won 2 French National Student match-racing, won French National Student cruiser/ racer title and has competed in many "Tour Voile", "Spi Ouest France", Cowes Week (TP52), Fasnet Races.

Afloat magazine:


Henri Lloyd are proud to announce their continued and unbroken sponsorship of British Sailing Legend Sir Ben Ainslie and the J.P.Morgan BAR Extreme 40 sailing team.

Ben will continue to be the face of Henri Lloyd's marine inspired men's fashion collection for 2014 and will be putting the marine clothing through its paces as he embarks on his latest challenge the Extreme Sailing Series campaign..

Paul Strzelecki, Joint Chief Executive of Henri Lloyd explained, "Henri Lloyd has supported Ben since he was just 19 early on in his sailing career - we have watched him grow and supported him every step of the way. Ben is one of the truly great sportsmen of our time and we are proud that he chooses Henri Lloyd technical garments and he demonstrates our own ethos of technical excellence, performance and intelligent innovation!"


ACO to sponsor the next three Musto Skiff World Championships Thursday, 27 February 2014 The next three World Championships are to be held at Perth (Australia), Lake Garda (Italy) and a European Venue to be selected. ACO is working with the MPSCA to develop the best series of world championships ever held for singled-handed asymmetric trapeze dinghies. The support from ACO will enable fantastic event programmes for the competitors, both on and off the water.

Throughout the world, the ACO brand is recognised as a leading supplier in the design, development and manufacture of surface water drainage systems.


A new chapter in the 47 year history of the growth of McConaghy Boats commenced this week on Hong Kong Harbour with the signing of an investment agreement between McConaghy Boats owners, Mark Evans and Jono Morris, with Graham Porter of Tiger Group Investments.

Graham is a passionate yacht owner based in Hong Kong, who has built up a range of successful businesses in the commercial shipping sector since starting in Vancouver in the early 1990s. Tiger Group investments now owns and manages over 158 container ships, dry bulk, tankers and other offshore vessels. Seaspan, one of the Tiger group investments, is the leading container ship lessor listed on the NYSE.

For some time Graham has had a keen interest in composite construction and the benefits that these materials would provide to the commercial marine sectors as well as a range of other industries. His interest lead him to McConaghy Boats who he recognised as the world leader in this field.

The new partnership provides capital for investment in new state of the art machinery and equipment as well as a new facility in China. The new facility will be a deepwater frontage to cater for the increasing demand for larger composite vessels and other components, with room to expand as required.


Peters & May has reported its strongest quarter in two years and is forecasting further growth in 2014

Peters & May, the UK-based global boat transporter, is showing steady signs of growth after the company reported Q4 as its most successful quarter in two years.

The group is forecasting continued growth in 2014, with Q1 sales expected to rise by 37% compared to the last quarter of 2013. Growth will be driven by established offices in the UK, USA, Asia, Spain and France, but will also be supported by new and existing agency agreements and three new offices.

Peters & May recently opened new offices in Palma de Mallorca, Spain; Le Havre, France and Shanghai, China.


The Dubai Maritime City Authority (DMCA) has announced the introduction of a series of new initiatives for facilitating the issuance of official permits for foreign yachts participating at the 2014 Dubai International Boat Show 2014. The initiatives are in line with the Authority's commitment to support the event that takes place from March 4-8 at the Dubai International Marine Club in Mina Seyahi.

The issuance of Foreign Yachts Permits is part of the first-ever batch of maritime licensing services for recreational, commercial, sports, tourist and traditional marine vessels within Dubai's waters. The permits are given only upon strict compliance with Dubai's technical specifications, local maritime safety systems, and eco-friendly requirements.


The boat jumble which claims to be the largest in Europe opens on Sunday 27th April. The Beaulieu Boatjumble, now in its 37th year, will have new and used marine and boating kit, spread over 1,000 stands.

New boats from leading manufacturers and brokerages will be on sale, and sailer-trailers on show. Clothing stands and the latest technological kit will also be on display.

The Boatmart brings together a wide range of used boats, from classics to nearly new and those in need of restoration, which can be viewed before you buy. In the enlarged Trunk Traders area, amateur jumblers can sell their surplus second-hand sailing items from the boot of their car. Trading is brisk, so get there early.

A new feature at this year's jumble - the Walkabout Auction - offers exhibitors an opportunity to sell off surplus items of stock they don't want to take home/

Lou Abrahams - A Tribute From Sandringham Yacht Club
Click on image to enlarge.

Today we farewell Lou Abrahams; past commodore, life member, skipper, mentor, friend and role-model for so many of our members, who passed away yesterday.

As Commodore of the Club that Lou loved so much, I speak for all 2,600 Members in paying tribute to Lou.

Lou joined SYC in 1964 and sailed a succession of fast yachts in a career spanning some 50 years that resulted in success at many of the world's premier yacht races, from the famed Sydney Hobart, to the Clipper/Kenwood Cup in Hawaii, the Admiral's Cup in England and numerous other events around the world.

As early as 1970 Lou was making a name for himself in sailing, originally with the first racing yacht he owned, Odin, then with Vittoria - the first Victorian challenger in the Admiral's Cup.

Next came his series of boats incorporating the 'Challenge name that became well known throughout Australia and overseas for successes in Sydney Hobart races, Hamilton Island, Hogs Breath and Geelong Race Weeks, Victorian Association Cup teams, Club races and those international events mentioned above.

Among the significant awards Lou received is the Australian Ocean Racer of the year in both 1984 and in 1990. Additionally, in 1983 he was awarded the Victorian Yachtsman of the year and in 2006, the Veteran Ocean Racer of the Year.

In 2002 Lou received a Commonwealth medal for Services to Sailing - well deserved after fifty years of unassuming but extremely successful involvement in sailing and the Services to Yachting award in 2006.

To Joan and the family, the thoughts and regard of the SYC community and, indeed, the wider sailing community, are with you. -- Chris Carlile, SYC Commodore

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Bernard Gallay Yacht Brokerage:

See the collection at

The Last Word
Take it easy, but take it. -- Woody Guthrie

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