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
Line Honors and Bragging Rights For Lucky
Photo by Lloyd Images. Click on image for photo gallery.
Late Friday afternoon, British time, Bryon Ehrhart's Lucky was the first boat in the Transatlantic Race 2015 to cross the finish line at The Lizard, ending a brutal 8 days 22 hours 5 minutes and 3 seconds at sea on a 2,800-mile eastbound crossing of the North Atlantic, sailed mostly in strong winds. At present Lucky holds the lead in the Transatlantic Race 2015 under IRC handicap, but the title remains under threat from boats yet to finish. Similarly, her impressive course time is likely to be bettered by the maxis which started four days after her.
Crossing the line off the Lizard at 21:30:21 UTC (17:30:21 EDT) Saturday night, Clarke Murphy's 100ft Nomad IV arrived second, after a tense 24 hours when she'd done well to close on Lucky.
Third home on the water, finishing at 02:21:18 UTC, was Mariette of 1915, the biggest, heaviest and -- celebrating her centenary this year - oldest boat in this year's Transatlantic Race.
German boats were fourth and fifth. Tilmar Hansen's Outsider crossed the finish line off the Lizard at the southernmost tip of Cornwall, at 13:55:27 UTC (09:55:27 EDT) on Saturday and completed the Coastal Race on to Cowes, finishing off the Royal Yacht Squadron just after dawn this morning.
Crossing the finish line at 01:11:44 UTC (11 Jul 21:11:44 EDT) was Stella Nova, the Class 40 winner. Class 40s are built for ocean racing, so the big conditions the boats experienced crossing the Atlantic were not overwhelming for her. Burkard Keese's team, which includes doublehanded round the world sailor Jörg Reichers, performed exceptionally, finishing more than 180 miles ahead of Michel Kleinjans' second-place Class 40, Visit Belgium.
Crossing the line off the Lizard at 10:10:59 UTC this morning (06:10:59 EDT) was the Open 60 Grey Power, skippered by 76-year-old Sir Robin Knox-Johnston
First Start Tomorrow For 48th Transpac
San Pedro, California, USA: The first of four separate waves of 61 entries will embark tomorrow for the start of the 2015 Transpac. This is the 48th edition of this classic ocean race that stretches 2225 miles from Los Angeles to Honolulu, and is organized biennially by the Transpacific Yacht Club.
Tomorrow 22 entries of Divisions 7 and 8 will proceed west to the starting line set near the Point Fermin Buoy in San Pedro. After the starting gun fires at 1300 Pacific Daylight Time, this largest of the starting groups will head west towards the first mark of the course: the West End of Catalina Island, which must be left to their port side.
There are no other marks of the course to honor until finishing at the Diamond Head Buoy east of Waikiki on the south coast of Oahu, 2225 miles to the west.
The three other remaining starts will be held at 1:00 PM PDT on Thursday (Divisions 4, 5 and 6), at 12:30 PM (Multihulls) and at 1:00 PM (Divisions 1,2 and 3) on Saturday July 18.
This year the oldest boat is also the largest in the start tomorrow, the Division 8 entry Martha, a Crowninshield-designed 84-foot schooner built in wood in 1907 by W.F. Stone in San Francisco. -- Dobbs Davis
* Stan Honey, the man intended to navigate record breaking Australian supermaxi yacht, Wild Oats XI, in the Transpac race from Los Angeles to Hawaii, has been injured at sea during another event and is in doubt for the start of the 2225 nautical mile race next Saturday.
Honey, arguably the world's best ocean racing navigator, was apparently knocked unconscious aboard the 30.5 metres long American supermaxi, Comanche, which is competing in the Trans-Atlantic race from Newport, Rhode Island to England. The extent of his injuries are unknown, however, the Wild Oats XI crew has been contacted and advised to have a replacement navigator on stand-by.
At the time of the incident Comanche - which finished second to Wild Oats XI in the most recent Rolex Sydney Hobart race - was averaging better than 25 knots on what was a 24-hour run that exceeded 600 nautical miles.
"It appears that he had a fall and was knocked out aboard Comanche, something that's not hard to do when sailing in the conditions they are experiencing," Wild Oats XI's skipper, Mark Richards, said today. "The latest information is that Comanche is averaging 24.5 knots and is 600 nautical miles from the finish line. All we can do right now is to wait for an update on Stan's condition and hope he's OK. In the meantime we will have another navigator ready to go for the Transpac race if required." -- Rob Mundle
Dubarry Ultima - Quality Always Lasts
It's amazing to think how sailing has changed since Dubarry started making boots in 1937. The first marina arrived in the 1930s but there were no plastic boats to park in it before the 1940s. There was no yacht radar before the 1950s, nor auxiliary diesel engines before the 1960s, also when polyester sailcloth ousted linen and cotton. The 1970s brought instrumentation and the 1980s saw Decca come and go as GPS stole the show. Oiled canvas gave way to PVC, which yielded to GORE-TEX. Much indeed has changed, yet one thing has stayed the same: nothing signifies a confident, experienced, discerning yachtie like a pair of Dubarry boots.
Developed as a more luxurious, classical and traditional interpretation of the legendary Shamrock, on which the company's reputation was built, the Ultima is Dubarry's flagship boot. Its sole delivers award-winning, sure-footed grip. Its GORE-TEX liner is waterproof and breathable to keep you warm, dry and comfortable. Its Dry-Fast-Dry-Soft water-resistant leather weathers with grace and distinction, recording every nautical mile of your experience in the gentle, tanned folds of its sumptuous hide. It's clearer than ever that, though times may change, quality always lasts.
Dubarry Ultima - Where will you go in yours?
Danish Double In Women's Match Racing Worlds
The Danish dynamite exploded completely when the 2015 ISAF Women's Match Racing World Championship, the first event on the 2015 WIM Series, concluded Sunday in Middelfart. The all-Danish final, comprising Lotte Meldgaard and Camilla Ulrikkeholm, went to five stunning matches, with absolutely amazing action all the way to the last and very close finish fight. Lotte Meldgaard is the new World Champion
"I'm so happy, this was about time" she shines, explaining that she's raced in almost all the championships since 2000, until today having achieved all medals but the golden one around her neck.
The cheering crowds on the harbour pier of Middelfart got a show they'll never forget, when the two Danish crews in the final clashed almost within the reach of the many spectators.
Final results in the 2015 ISAF Women's Match Racing World Championship in Middelfart, Denmark, the first event on the 2015 WIM Series:
Lotte Meldgaard, DEN - Camilla Ulrikkeholm, DEN 3 - 2
Petit final results:
Stephanie Roble, USA - Anne-Claire Le Berre, FRA 2 - 0
Semi final results:
Lotte Meldgaard, DEN - Anne-Claire Le Berre, FRA 3 - 0
Camilla Ulrikkeholm, DEN - Stephanie Roble, USA 3 - 1
Total results and standings in the 2015 WIM Series after the first event out of four (skipper, nationality, WIM Series points):
1. Lotte Meldgaard, DEN, 25 points
2. Camilla Ulrikkeholm, DEN, 22
3. Stephanie Roble, USA, 20
4. Anne-Claire Le Berre, FRA, 16
5. Anna Östling, SWE, 15
6. Katie Spithill, AUS, 14
7. Caroline Sylvan, SWE, 13
8. Klaartje Zuiderbaan, NED, 12
9. Milly Bennett, AUS, 10
10. Pauline Courtois, FRA, 8
11. Louise Christensen, DEN, 6
12. Diana Kissane, IRL, 4
13. Rikst Dijkstra, NED
14. Johanna Larsson, SWE
15. Nina Ramm-Schmidt, FIN
16. Sanna Häger, SWE
Burling and Tuke Bounce Back From Disqualification To Win the 49er Europeans
Pete Burling and Blair Tuke have won the 49er European Championships, after dominating the final day of competition on the huge Atlantic swell off the coast of Portugal.
The Kiwis went into the day in 3rd overall, after coming off worse from a protest by Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen the previous evening. The Aussies were sailing upwind out of the leeward gate when the Kiwis, below the layline as they were dropping their gennaker, fouled the 2012 Olympic Champions. The Kiwis' subsequent disqualification dropped them to 3rd overall, 7 points behind the Aussies who assumed the championship lead.
The surprise silver medallists were Germany's Justus Schmidt and Max Boehme who have had a meteoric rise up the rankings this season. The up-and-coming young team won Kiel Week a few weeks earlier, and now with a 2nd place in Porto they hold a useful points lead in the German trials for Olympic selection for Rio 2016. This was the first of three regattas that the Germans are using for their trials process.
The bronze medal went to John Pink and Stu Bithell who bounced back from their disqualification last night with a great performance on the water, edging Outteridge and Jensen off the podium by just 2 points.
Today's victory marks an unbroken run of 18 regatta wins for Burling and Tuke who have been invincible since taking the Olympic silver medal at London 2012 behind arch-rivals Outteridge and Jensen.
Final top five:
1. Peter Burling / Blair Tuke, NZL, 32 points
2. Justus Schmidt / Max Boehme, GER, 44
3. John Pink / Stuart Bithell, GBR, 46
4. Nathan Outteridge / Iain Jensen, AUS, 46
5. Lukasz Przybytek / Pawel Kolodzinski, POL, 35
Conti and Clapcich Survive Medal Race To Win 49er FX Europeans
Giulia Conti and Francesca Clapcich high-fived and hugged as they crossed the finish line of a wild and whacky Medal Race to win the 49er FX European Championships in Porto.
After three Gold Fleet races for the top 25 boats out on the open ocean, the top 10 qualified for the Medal Race a few hours later on the River Douro. It was a big contrast from the steady 10-knot breezes earlier in the day. Strong current flowing upwind, and massive gusts and wind holes combined with wildly shifting breeze made for thrilling spectating but heart-stopping competition for the sailors.
The Italian team of Conti and Clapcich went into the final race in 4th overall, behind the Dutch in the lead and two Danish teams in 2nd and 3rd.
Conti and Clapcich held on for 3rd place across the finish line, one place ahead of Jena Hansen and Katja Iversen. They were tied on 57 points, but the Italians' better finishing position gave them the title by a whisker. Hansen/Iversen took silver with their Danish training partners, Maiken and Anne-Julie Schutt in bronze. The Dutch missed out on a medal by just 2 points.
Final top five:
1. Giulia Conti / Francesca Clapcich, ITA, 36 points
2. Jena Hansen / Katja SalskovIversen, DEN, 32
3. Maiken Foght Schutt / AnneJulie Schutt, DEN, 25
4. Annemiek Bekkering / Annette Duetz, NED, 22
5. IdaMarie Baad Nielsen / MarieThusgaard Olsen, DEN, 33
Louise Morton And Bullit Win Coutts Quarter Ton Cup 2015
Cowes, UK - The Coutts Quarter Ton Cup 2015 finished in spectacular style with four windward leeward races in champagne sailing conditions. Going into the day Louise Morton's Fauroux designed Bullit had a ten point lead over nearest rival Sam Laidlaw's Aguila on 17 points, with Eric Reynolds Everitt designed Magnum Evolution third on 21 points and Tony Hayward's Blackfun, designed by Laurie Davidson, one further point back in fourth.
In the Corinthian Division for all amateur crews Pierre Paris's Penguin Playboy, crewed by Raphael Paris, Amme Lienhardt, Batile Geran and Nicolas Guillon, put in another great day to add three firsts and a fifth to their scorecard and claim Corinthian victory by six points from Paul Gibbon's Anchor Challenge with Robbie Stewart's Enigma taking third. This was the second time that Pierre and Pinguin Playboy have engraved their name on the Corinthian Trophy, the first being in 2013.
The Coutts Quarter Ton Cup prize givings are famous for featuring some very special prizes alongside the main trophies. The Marineware Trophy for the Concours D'elegance was this year awarded to Rickard Melander's Alice II, which underwent a major refit this winter and is looking quite stunning. The prize for the oldest crew once again went to Jim and George Webb's Flashheart with a combined age of 264, while the youngest crew award went to Olivia Dowling's Catch with a combined age of just 152. The Oldest Bowman trophy was awarded to 50 year old John Paxman of Panic. A Whiskers Special Award was presented by Lincoln Reading to the boat which had seen the most improvement in their results from last year to this and was won by Richard Fleck's Per Elisa who finished seventh overall, up eleven places from 2014.
Overall Top Five Results
1. Louise Morton, FRA, 9 points
2. Tony Hayward, NZL, 24.5
3. Magnum Evolution - Eric Reynolds, GBR, 29
4. Aguila - Sam Laidlaw, GBR, 29
5. Tiger - Peter Morton, GBR, 38
Those scows (finally) take another step forward, it's the Jules Verne for Francis Joyon, birth of the Collectif Ultim, new Kiwi speedster (for Australia...), Tom Addis returns to the fray and a closer look at Mr Ehman's latest plans... Blue Robinson, Ivor Wilkins, Patrice Carpentier, Carlos Pich, Dobbs Davis
Is busy homemaking in Bermuda...
John Craig and continuing improvements to the Sailing World Cup
Special rates for Scuttlebutt Europe subscribers:
Seahorse Print or Digital Subscription Use Discount Promo Code SB2
1yr Print Sub: €77 - £48 - $71 / Rest of the World: £65 www.seahorse.co.uk/shop/subs/
1yr Digital Sub for £30: www.seahorse.co.uk/shop/digital
Discounts shown are valid on a one year subscription to Seahorse magazine
British Etchells National and Open Championship
20 boats came to race in the central Solent as part of the build-up to the 2016 Etchells World Championships, and this event provided useful information and practice for not only the competitors but also the Royal London Yacht Club who will host the 2016 Worlds.
As well as the British, teams came from Ireland, USA and Hong Kong to compete for the Open Championship but it was local sailor Shaun Frohlich sailing Exabyte with Duncan Truswell and David Bedford who won overall taking 2 of the 3 cups on offer (the British National Championship and the Open Championship) by a margin of 8 points from Jeremy Thorp's Phan, with Willie McNeil sailing Hancock winning the ISAF CAT1 non-professional championship trophy and finishing 3rd overall.
Final top five
1. Exabyte V, Shaun Frohlich, 8 points
2. Phan, Jeremy Thorp, 16
3. Hancock, Willy McNeill, 22
4. Highlife, Peter Rogers, 22
5. Betsy, Tom Carruthers, 25
Atlantic Anniversary Regatta
Hamburg, Germany: The Norddeutscher Regatta Verein (Hamburg) and the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (Porto Cervo, Sardinia) are proud to announce their cooperation for a unique offshore regatta series in 2017/2018. On the occasion of both clubs' anniversaries the participating yachts will sail from the Canary Islands to the Caribbean in 2017 and on to Hamburg, Germany in 2018. In 2017 the YCCS, which was founded by H.H. the Aga Khan, will be looking back on 50 years of club history while in 2018 the NRV will celebrate its 150th anniversary.
The "Atlantic Anniversary Regatta" will depart from the Canary Islands in November 2017 headed for Virgin Gorda (British Virgin Islands), where the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda has its winter base. Depending on the size of the competing yachts and the wind conditions the boats are expected to arrive in Virgin Gorda after approximately two weeks. Subsequently they will have the opportunity to take part in the existing regatta circuit around the Caribbean. With the popular Newport Bermuda Race the participants will arrive at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, the organiser of the 2017 America's Cup. In July 2018 the yachts will then leave Bermuda for their return journey to Hamburg. The finish line will await them just off Cuxhaven where the river Elbe flows into the North Sea.
Expressions of interest are very welcome at this early stage via the event website www.atlanticanniversaryregatta.com
Hydroptere In Hawaii: No Record
After 10 days, two hours, and 26 minutes, the World's Fastest Sailing Boat, the Hydroptere, finally arrived at Kewalo Basin from Los Angeles in attempt to set the record for the fastest sail from Los Angeles to Honolulu.
Hydroptere was crewed by French skipper Alain Thebault, his co-skipper Jacques Vincent, and a crew of four Americans. They set sail on Monday, June 22 at 11:27 a.m. HST from Point Fermin and crossed the finish line near Diamond Head, Hawaii at 2:28 p.m. on July 2.
The crew wasn't able to break the record because of certain obstacles, such as a drop in wind speeds as well as an encounter with the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which is reportedly the size of Texas.
Making it the fastest sailing boat in the world,the 60-foot hydrofoil trimaran has foils under its floats and the outrigger hulls that lifts it five meters above the water.
The record was set in 2005 by Geronimo.
Top drawer IRC weapon with recent rig and sails, fully faired hull and recent performer at the Commodores Cup. Available at a very very low price.
See the RaceboatsOnly.com collection at seahorsemagazine.com/brokerage/
The Last Word
I am hitting my head against the walls, but the walls are giving way. -- Gustav Mahler
Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see www.scuttlebutteurope.com/advertise.html