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

Slow Start In Santander For Finns
Two days into the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championship and after more than 13 hours afloat the Finn fleet has only one race to show for it. It was a good race though with wins going to Oliver Tweddell (AUS) and Giles Scott (GBR), but then after a long wait the fleet was sent ashore. Three races are now planned for Wednesday.

Yellow fleet was won by Tweddell who led the entire race from Deniss Karpak (EST) and Josip Olujic (CRO). The Blue fleet was stacked with big names but the returning Jonas Hogh-Christensen (DEN), the London 2012 Silver medalist, back after a two year lay-off, led round the top mark from London 2012 bronze medallist Jonathan Lobert (FRA). Scott rounded in tenth and made gains throughout to pass H√łgh-Christensen at the last mark to take the race win. The Dane crossed in second with Lobert third.

The fleet then waited afloat for another six hours with no further racing as the wind performed circles around the fleet.

After losing Monday with no wind, and only one race on Tuesday the Finn fleet is now a long way behind schedule. Three races are scheduled for Wednesday to complete the opening series, before the gold and silver fleet splits for the next three days.

Results after 1 race
1. Oliver Tweddell, AUS
1. Giles Scott, GBR
3. Jonas Hogh-Christensen, DEN
3. Deniss Karpak, EST
5. Josip Olujic, CRO
5. Jonathan Lobert, FRA
7. Pieter-Jan Postma, NED
7. Frederico Melo, POR
9. Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic, CRO
9. Anders Pedersen, NOR

Full results:

* It was a tough fifth day of racing for all of the fleets at the Santander 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships with a challenging up and down wind playing havoc across the seven race courses.

It was scheduled to be a Super Tuesday with all of the fleets apart from the Women's RS:X scheduled to take to the water but the schedule did not quite go to plan with abandonments, strong current and a fickle breeze challenging the Race Committees.

All of the fleets managed to complete some racing with the Men's RS:X and Women's 470 rounding off their Qualification Series, the Laser and Laser Radial continued their gold fleet racing and the remaining fleets resumed qualification.

Chicago Match Cup Starts Wednesday
Wednesday morning the world's top sailing talent will begin a five-day battle of high-intensity match racing for the right to claim the Chicago Match Cup, the only U.S. stop on the Alpari World Match Racing Tour (AWMRT). A total of $75,000 in prize money is at stake, as well as valuable points on the AWMRT World Championship year-long series.

The action will begin at 0930 CDT with the start of Round Robin competition among 12 teams from nine nations. From this stage four teams will advance to the Quarter-Finals, with the remaining two slots filled from the results of the Repechage held among the remaining eight teams. Race management is being led by PRO Darcy Cook of the Chicago Match Race Center (CMRC).

Courses will be set near the north entrance to Belmont Harbor, site of CMRC's operations base, and within easy shore side access for spectators.

Competing teams in the Chicago Match Cup include the following:

Ian Williams (GBR) GAC Pindar
Mathieu Richard (FRA) LunaJets
Taylor Canfield (ISV) USone
Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Hansen Sailing Team
Keith Swinton (AUS) Team Alpari FX
Phil Robertson (NZL) Waka Racing
Joachim Aschenbrenner (DEN) Team Trifork
Pierre Antoine Morvan (FRA) Vannes Agglo Sailing Team
Eric Monnin (SUI) Team Sailbox
Chris Steele (NZL) 36 Below
Don Wilson (USA)
Tom Slingsby (AUS)

British Sailing Legends Announce Unique Youth Experience
British sailing legends, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston and Sir Ben Ainslie announced a unique opportunity today for a young person to experience Mother Nature's toughest conditions, as a competitor in the world's longest ocean race.

Speaking today at the PSP Southampton Boat Show, the pair revealed a national contest for 18-24 year olds, regardless of previous sailing experience, to win a crew place for the Pacific Ocean leg on the next edition of the famous Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.

"I share the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation's passion for inspiring young people to have life changing experiences through sailing, and I am delighted to be donating this unique adventure," remarked Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first man to ever sail solo, non-stop around the world in 1968/69.

"When you take on the Pacific Ocean crossing, you are taking on something very, very special. There is nothing bigger or more awesome on this planet," Sir Robin continued: "This is something that will test you and push you to limits you didn't know you had. Very few people have tackled this challenge and now it's your chance to be one of them."

Anyone in the UK aged 18-24, can be nominated for the prize. No previous sailing experience is required as full training will be provided. You will just have to provide your reasons for nominating this particular young person to take on the challenge.

To nominate a young person you think would gain from the Clipper Race experience, download the application form and check the terms and conditions at

The closing date for nominations is 14 November. A shortlist of five finalists will be announced on 3 December and both Sir Robin Knox-Johnston and Sir Ben Ainslie will be part of the final voting process. The winner must be available for four weeks of training based out of Gosport, Portsmouth Harbour, on the UK south coast, and also the race itself from China to North America which will take place during March-April 2016.

To learn more about the Clipper Race:

Dubarry Crosshaven - 'Race Face' Protection
Dubarry It's pitch-black. We're on the wind halfway across the Irish Sea, heading for 'The Rock' in a Force 6 - and it's building. On the rail we might look like a troop of Japanese snow monkeys on valium but we've huddled into something like comfort when skip calls the headsail change we've been dreading for the last five minutes. Three minutes later I'm clipped on with my feet on the leeward toerail with an armful of changed foresail when a wave engulfs the foredeck. The water clears and I'm still onboard thanks to the combined efforts of my tether and the stanchion lodged in my crotch. Lucky me.

Sail change over I'm back on the rail but my feet are cold and wet and my enthusiasm for this caper ebbs quickly away, unlike the sea water - the boots were still wet a week after the finish in Plymouth. It's 1989 and, though the stylishly weathered Shamrock boot is much in evidence, the Crosshaven is but a dream. Had I been wearing Crosshavens, the gaiter and drawstring would have kept my feet dry and my race face on. Funny how something so simple can be so incredibly effective.

Dubarry Crosshaven - Born at sea

Etchells European Championship
3 days of racing in Weymouth bay, sailed in generally a moderate strength shifting wind coming from a North Easterly direction. David Campbell-James was Pro for the Portland based regatta organised by the WPNSA, the location was chosen as the start of a 2 year program of Etchells events leading up to the 2016 Etchells Worlds to be held here.

And the bay lived up to expectations as a challenging sailing area with minimal tidal gradient, but with a local topography that influenced both wind direction and pressure particularly as the land heated up during the day, when the thermal effect starting to move the wind to the right.

With 6 races sailed and 2 more scheduled to complete the series on the final day, anyone one of 4 boats could win the series: Swedish Blue, Phan, Elvis or Matatu Dubb and even going into the last race with only 1 discard to apply it was still all to play for, however it appeared that Razmilovic had blinked first, arriving at the windward mark 2nd to last, but with 5 more legs to sail he picked his way through the fleet 1 boat at a time until only Franks finishing first was ahead of him, but 2nd was enough, and Ante Razmilovic (Swedish Blue) sailing with a pre-determined changing crew over the 3 days of Steve Milne, Brian Hammersley and Stuart Flinn were the 2014 European Champions, both Overall and Corinthian, while Jeremy Thorp (Phan), Stuart Childerly and Roger Marino finishing in second place just 1 point behind, with David Franks (Elvis), Graham Sunderland, Amy Prime and Matt Reid 2 points further back in 3rd place. -- Rob Goddard

Full results on

Schooner Plymouth, Sunk In 1852 Collision, Is Identified In Lake Erie
In the early morning hours of June 23, 1852, the schooner Plymouth was sailing on Lake Erie from Huron, Ohio, to Buffalo, New York, with a mixed cargo of wheat, flour and other goods.

Suddenly the sidewheel steamer Northern Indiana, carrying a full load of passengers, burst from the murk, slamming into the schooner amidships at nearly a right angle, burying its bow into the Plymouth.

The hapless schooner quickly sank, but its 10-man crew escaped in the ship's lifeboat and were taken aboard the Northern Indiana.

The Plymouth lay at the bottom of Lake Erie, about 20 miles off Cleveland, for 144 years until the wreck was discovered in 1996. Though found, it could not be identified. Because it featured a tiller, instead of a wheel, to steer the ship, it became known as the "Cleveland Tiller Wreck."

Until now. The National Museum of the Great Lakes, in collaboration with the Cleveland Underwater Explorers, announced Tuesday that the so-called tiller wreck is actually the Plymouth. -- Brian Albrecht, The Plain Dealer

RS100 - Five Straight Wins For Huw Powell
The English Riviera provided the backdrop to the rescheduled penultimate event on the RS100 circuit at the POSH Regatta. The winner, with five straight race wins, was Huw Powell from Red Wharf Bay SC with Mark Harrison of Gurnard SC in second and David Smart of Chew Valley SC third. An Easterly wind for the weekend, some fantastic waves for downwind sleigh rides to die for.

Overall Powell proved he is the one to beat so long as there is some breeze. Harrison's great day on Saturday had given him enough cushion to relax on Sunday and take second and Smart pulled back on Chris Cunningham and keep Greg Booth at bay to take third overall.

The final event of the 2014 RS100 series is the Gul Inlands at Grafham over 11/12 October.

Final top five

1. Huw Powell, 4 points
2. Mark Harrison, 9
3. David Smart , 13
4. Chris Cunningham, 14
5. Greg Booth, 16

John B. Thomson, Jr.
The sailing community lost one of its best owner/drivers and a pillar of the sport when John B. Thomson, Jr., passed away in the evening of Wednesday, September 10, surrounded by family and loved ones after succumbing to the effects of ALS. He was 70.

Thomson Jr. was a beloved figure in his hometown and around the world. Husband to wife Adrienne, father to three children and grandfather to more, he was also the steady and kindhearted owner of the Infinity yacht racing team, which won many regattas around the world through the course of 40 years of buoy and ocean racing, spanning from the early 1970s into the 21st century.

He began sailing at the age of 8 and later in life would go on to own a series of yachts named Infinity. His welcoming nature and hearty laugh were readily recognized at the many regattas he won, including the Kenwood Cup, SORC, Block Island Race Week, Key West Race Week, Antigua Race Week, and the Around Long Island Race.

Thomson was a member of the New York Yacht Club, Manhasset Bay Yacht Club, Royal Cork Yacht Club, and the Storm Trysail Club, for which he served as commodore. He was past director of the U.S. Naval Academy-Fales Committee, and one of the benefactors that helped the New York Yacht Club purchase its satellite clubhouse in Newport, R.I. He also was very active in owners' associations for classes such as the International 50-Foot Association and the Farr 40 Class Association.

Letters To The Editor -
Letters are limited to 350 words. No personal attacks are permitted. We do require your name but your email address will not be published without your permission.

* From John Walker: I suppose that for those like Adrian Morgan who are no supporters of the foiling direction taken by the Americas Cup, the only benefit is that going faster gets it over sooner. With my tongue firmly in my cheek.

* From Liz Baylis, ISAF Match Racing Committee Chairman:

I had the pleasure last week of watching the IFDS Blind Match Racing World Championship in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. (See the Race Report in Scuttlebutt 4170.) My first reaction upon meeting the sailors and watching them compete was - "Wow!" These are all truly gifted athletes with a passion for their sport. In this event they competed without a sighted person onboard while racing - imagine buoy racing in close quarters in the pitch black with sloppy 4-foot seas and light winds. Could you do it? I was in awe.

Leading up to the event I had read with fascination about previous blind match racing events and researched the Homerus Autonomous Sailing System which uses three acoustic buoys, each with a unique sound signal, defining the course while the racing boats had their own sound signal that changes when the boat is on port or starboard tack. But this still did not prepare me for what I would witness.

I was on the water providing live commentary to an audience on shore that included sighted and blind sailors and non-sailors. And I can't tell you how many times I just kept saying "Wow, these athletes are awesome. They are sailing really well and they are match racing, being aggressive, and doing it with great enthusiasm. I'm impressed."

I am looking forward to seeing this sport grow and I encourage all of you to find an opportunity to witness and support these fine athletes. I think you'll be impressed as well.

P.S. There was one day with no racing due to 30-40 knot winds, so what did the athletes do? They went bowling! Good fun was had by all.

* From Virginia Jones: I noted the brief bit in tonight's SButt about citizen/sailor scientists gathering oceanographic data. An acquaintance -- Dr. Jesse Ausubel -- worked on a project (see attachment) called the Census of Marine Life for ten years. He's now gone on to other oceanographic projects but the Census was an amazing initiative by a world wide collaborative, and the data gathered along with the new species discovered was even more amazing. Do some googling of Jesse Ausubel -- he works at Rockefeller University in NY and at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute in the summer as he has a house here on the Vineyard. He's quite a guy. Attend a talk by Jesse and you'll feel as if you've had the benefit of a particularly engaging graduate lecture, but without any exams or need to take notes. His is the best and most engaging kind of science.

And, just to blow another horn, if you are interested in the early days of oceanography, a fabulous new book titled ATLANTIS STORIES by William Cooper has just been published by the Woods Hole Historical Museum. Edited by Dr. Arthur Gaines and another scientist (name escapes me) it is Mr. Cooper's reminiscences of sailing on the 143 foot ketch ATLANTIS from 1944 to 1948. She was built in Germany and sailed for WHOI as their principal research vessel for years. I remember watching her sweeping through the Sound back in the day -- she was a legendary vessel and the stories are really wonderful. He was a great story teller, and eventually, after leaving ATLANTIS became a boat builder on the Cape. Call the Historical Museum at 508-548-7270 to order a copy. It is pricey but the quality of the production (lots of photos and additional information) is well worth the price. You won't regret buying a copy -- use it as your own Christmas present!

Featured Brokerage
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EX ROXY is a pedigree of her kind. She has competed in all VENDEE GLOBE races and she held for several years the East to West single handed record around the world. She has been completely upgraded in 1998 under the supervision of the designer Marc LOMBARD. This included canting keel and many improvements. She has been completely overhauled for the 2004/2005 VENDEE GLOBE. Many successful and famous sailors have sailing on board : Philippe Poupon, Bertrand de Broc, Philippe Monnet, Simone Bianchetti, Mich Birch and Anne Lyardet.

Contact Bernard Gallay Yacht Brokerage:


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The Last Word
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