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Swuzzlebubble Claims Victory With A Day To Spare
Photo by Fiona Brown, Click on image for photo gallery.

Saint Quay Portrieux, France: With a bravura performance of three straight wins on today's penultimate day, the stunningly restored 1978 Farr designed Swuzzlebubble, owned and helmed by Peter Morton and crewed by Kelvin Rawlings, Anthony Haines, Eouard Lynch, John Kemp, David Lenz and Martin Calmon, claimed the 2014 Half Ton Classics Cup with a day to spare.

For Peter this win completes an extraordinary hat trick of Ton Cup victories. His first was the Three Quarter Ton Cup of 1986 in Torquay aboard Graham Walker's Indulgence. Ten years ago Peter was one of the driving forces behind the revival of the Quarter Tonners and he has gone on to win the Quarter Ton Cup no less than four times in three different boats, most recently just two weeks ago. Adding the Half Ton Cup to his trophy cabinet fulfills a long held dream for the man who has been a driving force in yacht racing for the past three decades.

The remainder of the podium is going down to the wire. Today, two ferociously competitive windward leeward races and a coastal course, around the rocky Iles de Saint-Quay, were run in glorious hot sunshine and a northwesterly wind of around 16-20 knots.

Tomorrow one single race remains to be sailed as the Sailing Instructions call for no starts to be made after 11.00. That single start is scheduled for 10.00 and with a forecast for more great weather we look forward to the event going out on a high note as Swuzzlebubble enjoys a lap of honour and Brittany Drizzle and General Tapioca fight it out for second place. -- Fiona Brown

Tall Ships Race 2014: Fredrikstad
Frederikstad, Norway: Class D vessel Gigi (UK) took line honours in the early hours of Thursday morningto be the first vessel to cross the finish line in The Tall Ships Races 2014. She crossed with a corrected time of two days, eleven hours and 24 minutes - this currently places her in sixth position overall - though these are still provisional results.

Christian Radich, Tecla and Wilhelmstad are also back in top three placings on corrected time in Classes A, B and C respectively.

Paul Blshop, Race Director, Sail Training International said, "Last night the Race Committee decided to bring the Time Limit forward to 1200 UCT/GMTtoday for the Class A vessels and for the other classes 1230 B Class, 1245 C Class, 1300 D Class.

"The Tall Ships fleet has had a challenging time tacking against strong headwinds over the past couple of days and have made slow progress, so advancing the time limit should ensure all vessels arrive in Fredrikstad before midday on Saturday. Those vessels that have not crossed the Finish Line by the new Time Limit will pass their positions to Race Control and will still qualify for a placing in the final results under Sail Training International's Finish at Sea formula. The racing has been very close so we could find that there are changes in the top placings."

Fredrikstad is expecting some wonderful weather and thousands of visitors for their port event which runs from 12 to 15 July.

The Tall Ship Races 2014 in Fredrikstad co-insides with the celebrations of the 200th anniversary of Norway's Constitution and independence.

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After the heroics of the last two days, the crews of the F18 breathed a sigh of relief when they woke up. Day 4 of the F18 World Championship at Ballyholme Yacht Club, Northern Ireland offered light winds and sunshine and the Race Committee managed to squeeze in three races before the wind died.

The F18 World Championship comes to a climax tomorrow with 3 more races scheduled and light winds forecast again. With only 10 points separating the top 3, everything is still up for grabs.

Top five:
1. Gunnar Larsen / Ferdinand van Westm, NED, 38 points
2. Taylor Reiss / Matthew Whitehead, (Junior), USA, 42
3. Gurvan Bontemps / Benjamin Amiot, FRA, 49
4. Morgan La Graviere / Armaud Jarlegan, FRA, 78
5. Tim / Jean Christophe Mourniac, FRA, 81
6. Robert Solune / Riwan Perron, (Junior), FRA, 89

Soto 40 Worlds
Valencia, Spain: The Soto 40 World Championship is being held at the Marina Real Juan Carlos I and it will last until July 12th.

Thursday July 10 saw the third day of races in Valencia's waters. The winners were the boats Hendrik Brandis' Earlybird and Tony Buckingham's Ngoni, which returned to top position overall with 19 points. It was also a hard day of work for the Umpires.

The sixth race of the event started at 1:05 pm with an 11 knots SE wind. The second race of the day started at 2:35 pm with a 14 knots wind from the same direction that progressively moved to the East to end at 125°; the Race Committee had to make a course change.

Andres Perez, President of the ISAF Judge Subcommittee: "Today we had four red flags and a green one. It was the most active day of the week. I think now the competition is intensifying, the end of the World Championship is coming and the crews are getting tough, playing with the limits. Besides, these events didn't have Umpires in the water all year, except for this World Championship. It isn't as easy to defend something in the protest room when an Umpire is in the water, so the crews don't sail in the same way".

Top three:
1. Ngoni, Tony Buckingham / Mark Lamy, GBR, 19 points
2. UON, Jose Manuel Caldeira, POR, 24
3. Niticia IV Burriana Nova, Luis Martin Cabiades / Jose Maria Torcida, ESP, 25

Amadour Wins 2014 Trophee Bailli De Suffren
Lelantina approaches Malta. Photo by Kurt Arrigo / Camper & Nicholsons. Click on image to enlarge.

Grand Harbour, Malta: The overall winner of the 2014 Trophee Bailli de Suffren, and the new holder of the "Sword of Admiral Satan" is the 1938 cutter Amadour.

After 134 hours of racing - across 600 miles of the Mediterranean, over three legs between Saint-Tropez and Malta - this year's event saw Tom Van Der Bruggen's Amadour triumph over last year's winner Lelantina by the narrowest of margins.

With yachts racing in three classes, using the CIM rating system for classic yachts and points awarded for each leg, the final calculation was finely balanced and the difference between first and second was just 0.09 points - between 242.27 and 242.18. The closeness of the competition was also reflected in the elapsed times, with Amadour covering the course in a total of 133 hours 56 minutes and Lelantina less than 30 minutes behind.

The third and final leg, from Trapani in Sicily to Malta's Grand Harbour Marina, was mostly upwind in a light breeze that held windless traps for the unwary, and a temperature and humidity that proved taxing by night as well as by day. First to arrive in Malta was Tioga of Hamburg, racing in the Spirit of Tradition class for modern yachts inspired by classic designs - in Tioga's case a re-imagining of a Francis Herreshoff ketch from the 1930s.

Overall results over the three legs are as follows:
1. Amadour, 242.27 points
2. Lelantina, 242.18
3. Noryema, 164.72
4. Isis, 161.52
5. Hilaria, 124.25
6. Irina VII, 83.10
7. Sitting Bull, 73.86
8. Vistona, 29.79
9. Cin Cin, 21.37

Also competing in the Spirit of Tradition class, so not eligible for the overall "Sword of Admiral Satan" was Tioga of Hamburg, who was first to finish in all three legs.

Provisional dates for the next year's Trophee Bailli de Suffren are Saturday 20 June to Wednesday 1 July 2015.

CIM (Comite International de la Mediterranee.) rating rules

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Tour Voile: Courrier Dunkerque 3 First at Granville, Takes Overall Lead
Granville, France: Daniel Souben and his team pulled off quite a coup on the second offshore leg of the Tour de France à la Voile, between Dieppe and Granville in Normandy. They made a perfect tactical choice and finished 15 minutes ahead of Bretagne Credit Mutuel Elite. And with a high scoring coefficient 5, they take advantage of Groupama 34's average performance (6th) to climb up the leaderboard with a comfortable 22 point lead.

It was the longest offshore leg of this 37e Tour de France à la Voile. 177 miles from Dieppe to Granville.

Courrier Dunkerque 3 finished the race after 22 hours and 15 minutes at sea, which was less than originally expected, thanks to improving weather conditions. In the end, the competitors didn't have more than 17-20 knots of wind and they finished the race under a big blue sky and perfect downwind sailing conditions.

This high scoring race reshuffles the overall ranking. Daniel Souben and his team don't only take the lead, they have taken a 22 point lead, with Team Omansail 2nd equal in points with Groupama 34.

Inshore racing at Granville on Friday... the boats depart the docks at 930 AM. On Saturday offshore racing starts, dock departure at 630 AM for the race to Roscoff.

Overall top five:
1. Courrier Dunkerque 3, Daniel Souben, 362 points
2. Groupama 34, Franck Cammas, 340
3. Team OmanSail, Sidney Gavignet, 340
4. Bretagne - Credit Mutuel Elite, skipper Nicolas Troussel, 334
5. Normandy - Acerel, Baptiste Choquenet, 314

A Week Long Flying Circus
Torbole, Lake Garda, Italy: The Foiling Week Moth Invitational Regatta between ten of the world top mothies was held with an 18 knots Peler (wind from the North). Four short but tight races selected the top three that entered the final showdown: The winner is Rob Gough in front of Josh McKnight (AUS) and Ben Paton (GBR).

The initial perfect Garda conditions gave way to a more unstable weather that didn't' allow the awaited mixed fleet racing to happen in the last two days.

Overall And Corinthian Winners Decided With A Day To Spare
Lymington, UK: Today saw tensions rise in an incredibly close race in unstable winds that saw the top five boats separated by just 12 seconds at the start of the final beat in the Dragon Edinburgh Cup.

To add to the drama, it was this leg that decided the overall winners of the event: after a consistent four races Graham and Julia Bailey, crewed by Keith Tippell and Will Heritage, started the day in a position to win both the Edinburgh Cup and Corinthian Trophy with a day to spare, providing they finished fourth or better.

The final leg saw a fierce battle between Lawrie Smith, who led round the bottom mark, and the Baileys, with Smith tacking on top of his opponents more than a dozen times. However, although they slipped back one place on the final leg, the Baileys held on to fourth place to cement their victory.

While the overall winner may have been decided with a day to spare, there is everything to play for in the final race tomorrow. There are only four points between Smith and Strauss in the battle for second and third places, while the next five boats are separated by only seven points. In the Corinthian Division, Mark Wade's Avalanche is in second place two points ahead of Eric Williams Ecstatic, with Julian Sowry's Scimitar just three points adrift in fourth place. -- Rupert Holmes

Audi Tron Sailing Series - Audi Melges 20
Riva del Garda: The amazing Audi summer in Riva del Garda is going on, after the Audi tron European Sailing Series Melges 24 now it's time for the Melges 20 to sail Lake Garda waters and enjoy the hospitality offered by the Fraglia Vela Riva and the Audi Stand.

This coming weekend racing will be taking place in the framework of the fourth act of Audi tron Sailing Series for the Melges 20 class.

B.Plan Sport&Events together with Melges Europe are ready to celebrate a new record of participating teams; 44 teams from 9 nations with Italy and Russia with the most represented nations, will be racing with an eye towards the World Championship the end of August.

Most of the teams have already taken part in the previous acts in Naples, Porto Ercole and Talamone.

We'll have the olympian giant Malcom Page (Mascalzone Latino Jr), the Gold medallist Daniele Cassinari (Stig) and the Olympian Nicola Celon (Leviatano).

The list follows with American Charlie McKee (Section 16), two-time bronze olympic medal Gabriele Benussi (Out of Reach), reigning Melges 24 world and european champion, Pietro D'Alì (Customly).

Races are set to start on Saturday and concluding on Sunday. A maximum of six races will be sailed and a discard after the series completion.

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