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

J70 Worlds
Newport, Rhode Island, USA: It may have been mostly cloudy for the opening day of the 2014 J/70 World Championship presented by Helly Hansen, but one standout bright spot was the performance of Joel Ronning of Minneapolis, Minn. Sailing Catapult with long-time crew Victor Diaz De Leon of Venezuela, and San Diego sailors Willem Van Waay and Bill Hardesty - the latter the 2011 Rolex Yachtsman of the Year - Ronning drove to win three out of three races sailed on a lumpy Rhode Island Sound.

Day two of the 2014 J/70 World Championship presented by Helly Hansen saw the completion of the Qualifying Series leading to the Championship Series of this inaugural world championship. With 86 boats racing, the fleet had been divided into four color-coded groups for the first two days of competition. Each group sailed two races today, which, when added to the three races sailed on the opening day, allows each team to count the best four out of five to determine whether they will sail in either the gold or silver fleet starting tomorrow.

Joel Ronning of Minneapolis, Minn., remains at the top of the overall standings after sailing Catapult to a 1-1-1-4-[8] for seven points. His three-point lead over local sailor Tim Healy (Jamestown, R.I.) on Helly Hansen was eroded today with Healy posting 2-2-2-1-[3] to tie things up on points.

The September 8-13 competition is being hosted by New York Yacht Club at Harbour Court, with regatta headquarters at Sail Newport, Rhode Island's Public Sailing Center.

International Canoe World Championship
Point Richmond, California, USA: With four out of a possible nine races now completed, predicting a winner of the 2014 IC World Championships is still a bit of a crapshoot, with San Francisco Bay conditions rolling the dice. Class rules mandate a 9-leg course of 9-10 miles (triangle, sausage, triangle, finish), and thus far it's been a regatta of attrition with typical San Francisco Bay conditions challenging even the most experienced IC sailors.

Day one saw choppy seas and winds bouncing against the IC Class' upper limit. Two local sailors very much at home with San Francisco conditions came in first and second, Mikey Radziejowski (USA) and Steve Gay (USA). Current World Champion, Chris Maas (USA), had a blistering lead for four legs, but took a DNF after capsizing and then hooking his halyard onto the weather mark's rigging.

Day two saw even tougher conditions. With the sea state more problematic than the wind, 15 boats were back on shore before the race finish, several with equipment failure, others simply with skipper fatigue.

Day three began with milder weather, and some new names appeared at the top of the list for race three: Past World Champion Robin Wood (GBR) took a first, followed by David Clark (USA) and then Del Olsen (USA).

At the end of four races, top five standings:

1. Mikey Radziejowski (1, 1, 8, 2)
2. David Clark (5, 12, 2, 5)
3. Alistair Warren (3, 6, 12, 4)
4. Steve Gay (2, 15, 9, 10)
5. Hayden Virtue (11, 3, 16, 6)

In a regatta with several "older" past champions competing, it's exciting to see two young men, Mikey Radziejowski and David Clark at the top of the leader board. Both are 23 years old, but hardly new to IC sailing. Mikey competed in the Worlds in Australia at age 17, and this is David Clark's fourth Worlds.

* With roots in the 19th century, this class came into being in the 1930's when US and British sailing canoe rules were merged. In 1945 the International Canoe Federation (ICF) adopted the 10 m2 Canoe as the ICF class. The first International Canoe World Championships were held in 1961 in Hayling Island, Great Britain. They initially took place every four years, but since 1975 been have held every three years. Canoe sailing remains a discipline under control of the ICF.

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

Seahorse Magazine

World news
Stamm And Le Cam team up for the Barcelona World Race, Soubenn beats Cammas to the Tour Voiles, no Atlantic records (for now), the Irish close out the French in Cowes, another 'new' Half Ton launch (in Kiwi), plus a new Class 950, Iain Murray on making 'that' difficult decision... and design data for all courtesy of Stan Honey and friends. Blue Robinson, Ivor Wilkins, Patrice Carpentier, Dobbs Davis

Rod Davis
An illuminating reprise of coaching methodology from one of the latest recruits to Artemis Racing

Seahorse build table - Welcome back
Time for a new raceboat from Stephen Jones

It all started in a garage - Part 1
Dobbs Davis sits down for a serious history lesson with J/24 designer Rod Johnstone

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America's Cup
Luna Rossa takes up key America's Cup role

Italian syndicate Luna Rossa has stepped up to be the America's Cup challenger of record though skipper Max Sirena says he wants a committee approach involving all five challengers working in harmony with defenders Oracle.

The question of who had taken over from departed Team Australia in this crucial role was raised at a London press conference on Tuesday night featuring the six teams intending to be involved in the next event which is planned to have the finals held in 2017.

While no official announcement was made, it is understood the teams have been told that Luna Rossa will hold that title.

Oracle's Jimmy Spithill pushed the question from the press conference floor to Sirena.

While the Italian didn't confess to being in charge, he did make it clear that a committee approach was the way forward. It's not an unusual move, being used during the 1992 and 1995 cups in San Diego.

* No criminal charges to be filed by San Francisco Police

San Francisco police say criminal charges will not be filed in the crash of an America's Cup catamaran in May 2013 that killed British Olympic star Andrew "Bart" Simpson.

Many people associated with sailing's marquee regatta had speculated that the crash was caused by a structural failure, which was confirmed for the first time Tuesday when a copy of the police report was posted by -- New Zealand Herald

The document here (PDF)

* Richard Gladwell is unimpressed by the press conference this week

The America's Cup again dominates the news. Not for what it is doing, but for what it is not.

The Media Conference held in London was an external disaster - with the video feed not running for 30 of the 45 minutes. The world audience was left in front of blank screens. Not a tweet of explanation either.

But that was a blessing in disguise as it masked was being said, or not being said.

Afterwards, it was hard to decide which was the worst effort - Team New Zealand's infamous Black Friday media conference - where some of the Kiwi media turned feral over funding issues. Or, was it the effort in London? Popular vote was that the London took the prize - on the basis that the damage was largely contained to New Zealand's shores.

One of the basic of holding a media conference, is that there is something to announce.

There was nothing to announce in London...

... After 12 months of indecision, what we saw in London last night should have come as no surprise.

The organisation for the next America's Cup can be summed up in one word - inept.

Still we have no update on the venue, no dates, no venues announced for the America's Cup World Series and no word on whether the Qualification Series will, in fact, be held. -- Richard Gladwell/

Spanish Team Confirms Its Crew For The Volvo Ocean Race
The skipper of the Spanish Team in the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-2015, Spaniard Iker Martínez, has confirmed today the final crew for the round the world race that will start in Alicante next October 4th with the first inshore race and will set sail to Cape Town (South Africa) one week later. The Spanish Team will have a larger crew than in previous editions and the sailors will rotate depending on the leg.

10 sailors, plus the onboard reporter, are part of the Spanish crew. They add up to 13 participations in the Volvo Ocean Race, while six of them will make their debut in the race.

Together with Iker Martínez -skipper-, Xabi Fernandez -watch captain-, Rafa Trujillo -trimmer/helmsman- Antonio "Ñeti" Cuervas-Mons -bowman- and Nico Lunven -navigator-, it has been confirmed that Michel Desjoyeaux (49), also involved in Team France America's Cup Challenge, will be onboard for some the legs on the role of watch captain. This will be his fourth participation in the race. The French sailor made his debut in the Whitbread 1985-1986, as a crewmember onboard Cote d'Or. He was back twice after that, in 1989 and 1993, although he only sailed one of the six legs completed in those editions.

Crew for the Spanish team in the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-2015

1. Iker Martínez (ESP), skipper
2. Nicolas Lunven (FRA), navigator
3. Xabi Fernandez (ESP), watch captain
4. Michel Desjoyeaux (FRA), watch captain
5. Andre Fonseca "Bochecha" (BRA), watch captain
6. Rafa Trujillo (ESP), trimmer/helmsman
7. Anthony Marchand (FRA), trimmer/helmsman *Under 30 crew member
8. Antonio "Neti" Cuervas-Mons (ESP), bowman
9. Carlos Hernandez (ESP), trimmer/bowman. *Under 30 crew member
10. Sam Goodchild (GBR), trimmer/bowman. *Under 30 crew member
11. Francisco Vignale (ARG), onboard reporter

Leading Pack Begins To Show At Dragon Gold Cup
Medemblik, Netherlands: The leading pack is beginning to show after four races at the Dragon Gold Cup in the Dutch city Medemblik. With two more races to go it already is a valid championship, with defending champion Markus Wieser leading so far. Despite the mild wind of the last days the event is on schedule. Up to the closing day on Friday there are six races scheduled. In total 86 Dragons participate in this unique event that annually takes place in another country.

Wieser, who sails for the United Arab Emirates, is no longer as unapproachable as Monday after two races. The first and second race of the event he sailed two first places which immediately made a huge gap between him and the other participants. But because of a 25th and a fifth place in today's races he let the competition come much closer. Poul Richard Hoj-Jensen is now provisionally second with only five points behind, Yevgen Braslavets is in third place with 11 points difference with Wieser. The best Dutch sailor is Pieter Heerema in tenth place.

Fred Imhoff so far is the most successful Dragon sailor from the Netherlands. He and his team won the European title in 1998 and in total he won the Dragon Gold Cup three times. Ad Bakker was the very first Dutchman who won a Dragon Gold Cup (1987).

Top five after four races:

1. Markus Wieser, Pugachev Sergey, Leonchuk Georgii, UAE, 32
2. Poul Richard Hoj-Jensen, Hamish McKay, Andrew Norden, GBR, 37
3. Braslavets Yevgen, Sidorov Igor, Timokhov Sergiy, UAE, 43
4. Lawrie Smith, Tim Tavinor, Joost Houweling, GBR, 46
5. Anatoly Loginov, Vadim Statsenko, Alexander Shalagin, RUS, 47

The Holy Grail (Of Sail Materials)
The marriage of film and fibre to produce lightweight sails is nothing new, but UK's latest development in this field is taking a new approach that brings additional qualities to the laminate never seen before

t is fitting that the name UK has chosen for this new material is the very definition of strength, lightness, toughness and durability: TITANIUM.

The process to produce TITANIUM resides in a corner of Hong Kong that is off-limits to visitors due to the sensitivity UK Sailmakers has to revealing the numerous innovations developed in the production of this material that may be the Holy Grail of sail materials.

"It's a lot of science, a good helping of art, and a pinch of black magic," says UK Sailmakers' Barry Hayes of UK Sailmakers' massive loft in Hong Kong. "Titanium sails are true one-piece sails that have continuous yarns running between the corners of the sail. They are the latest chapter in a story that began back in the 1980's with UK Tape-Drive."

When first introduced, Tape-Drive represented a remarkable insight to knowing how to separate the load-bearing and the air-impermeability functions of a sail. Using carbon tapes that followed the computer predicted load paths between the corners of the sail, Tape-Drive was a leap forward in producing membranes that were strong in the right directions without having excess weight.

Full article in Seahorse magazine:

New Model Yacht Racing Class For Ireland
Click on image to enlarge.

A Class Model Yacht Exciting times in model boat racing in Ireland as a new class is launched. Although the A Class was born in the early 1920's the design barely survived as faster slimmer classes emerged but these boats are simply beautiful writes Gilbert Louis.

Two Irish model boat sailors travelled to the PRACC event in Portishead. The Birth of the A Class in Ireland.

First impression? It's not an IOM boat - first feeling, I can feel the weight (my boat is 14.7Kg) so it doesn't quite accelerate like an IOM boat (4 Kg) nor handle like one. It feels like a small keel boat actually. And like a full size keel boat you got to let the sheet off quickly as you bear away or the boat won't bear off.

Contrary to IOM class rules the A class rules are more similar to the 12m JI of the glory years of the America's cup. So even boats of a same design and builder can have a different weight and sail area. The boat weight and water length impact on the sail area so it all works out at the end. A lighter boat may be more interesting but then you'll have less sail area whereas a heavier boat will be allowed more sail area.

Want to know more about the A class, see its history which started in the early 20's and which is now complementing our IOM and Dragon Force fleets then visit our new class website at

Full artice in Afloat magazine:

Snipe Wh&O Championship
San Diego, California, USA: The Puerto Rican duo of Raul Rios and Fernando Monllor kept a tight hold on their position as the leaders of the Snipe WH&O Championship on the third day of racing. Not only has the pair proven that they are fast, but they have also shown that they are consistent. Competitors became eligible to drop their worst race of the regatta after Race 5 today. With the drop, Rios and Monllor have two first-place finishes, two third-place finishes and their worst score is a fourth-place finish.

Also working for their plan were the day's idyllic racing conditions. With winds staying within a 10-12 knot range throughout both races, Rios had enough momentum for the fast sailing he thrives in. The ocean course also offered some strong swell and chop, ensuring that the Snipes were hiking hard to stay competitive.

With consistent competition and surprise first-place finishes, the current leading pack will have to fight hard over the next two days of racing. Four more races are anticipated, with the next one scheduled to start at 1200 on Thursday.

Top five after six races

1. Raul Rios / Fernando Monllor, PUR, 12 points
2. Luis Soubie / Diego Mini Lipszyc, ARG, 16
3. Breno Bianchi / Flavio de Castro, BRA, 18
4. Alexandre Tinoco / Alexandre Niederauer, BRA, 40
5. Ryohei Doi / Keiichiro Itagaki, JPN, 45

Featured Brokerage
Raceboats Only 2008 King 40. GBP 240, 000. Located in Hamble, United Kingdom.

Any sensible offers will be considered. Tokoloshe has been campaigned by the same owner since new and has had no expense spared in order to keep her competitive and looking good.

All sails by North. 3dl, 3di and panelled delivery sails.
34 sails in total including 2012 and 2013 sails.
Re faired and re painted 2010.
New deck paint 2013

Spare rudder, spinnaker pole and much more.

This yacht is very well equipped and prepared and is ready to sail.

Brokerage by Blue Marine Yachting:

David Bartholomew
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Complete details

See the collection at

The Last Word
Men who do things without being told draw the most wages. -- Rodney Dangerfield

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