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Chris Nicholson To Skipper Campers' Entry in the Volvo Ocean Race
Nicholson is a veteran of three VORs, his first as a watch captain in 2001-02 on Amer Sports 1 which was skippered by Emirates Team New Zealand managing director Grant Dalton.

In 2005-06 he was a watch captain on board Spanish entry movistar and in 200-09 he was co-skipper of Puma, which finished second.

Nicholson, aged 40, represented Australia at the Olympics in 2000 and 2004. He was 49er world champion in 1997, 1998 and 1999 and world champion in the 505 class in 1992, 1994 and 2002.

Nicholson will be joined by the current world match racing champion, Adam Minoprio, of New Zealand.

Minoprio's young BlackMatch team has had a meteoric rise up the world match racing standings. After only two years on the professional circuit the team won the season championship and was first in the world match racing standings.

Minoprio has returned to the circuit in 2010, with every intention of defending his hard-won title.

Emirates Team New Zealand operations manager Kevin Shoebridge, who will manage the Camper project, said the appointment of Nicholson and Minoprio brought together veteran ocean racing experience and up-and-coming talent.

Volvo Ocean Race crews number 10 plus a media/camera person who plays no part in sailing the yacht. "We are working with Camper on recruiting other members of the crew," Shoebridge said.

The Emirates Team New Zealand design team, headed by principal designer Marcelino Botin, is well advanced on the yacht's design. Building will start in Auckland in August. It will be launched early next year and undergo sea trials before being shipped to Spain.

Radical Sail Change Blows New Life Into Tornado Racing
The International Tornado Association (ITA) has responded to the global downturn and the need to attract sailing's Generation Next to the class by allowing the best, not just the best funded, to race these ultra-fast sailing machines.

And while it's not often in life the cost of anything goes down, this is exactly what will happen in the world of Tornado sailing.

One of the biggest changes to the sport since the introduction of spinnakers and the double trapeze in 2001 following the Sydney Olympics, the Tornado class has voted to put a ceiling on costs with the introduction of one-design sails in the interest of creating a fairer playing field.

"We feel that the Tornado has always been one of the leaders in sailing in terms of promotion, sponsorship and of course, excitement, and we believe this decision again shows we are not only capable of moving with the times, but responding to the times.

"We feel sailing needs to be pro-active, not just reactive.

"Consulting research gathered at the Olympic Games in Beijing in 2008 we decided cutting the cost of sails was the best way to reduce costs and we believe it is also in the true spirit of the Olympics to create this cheaper but also more level racing fiel." said ITA President and former World Champion and Olympic medalist Roland Gaebler from Germany.

The class is intent on working overtime to regain Olympic acceptance, hopefully by the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, after being left off the program for the London Olympics in 2012.

A complete set of the new one-design sails from Ullman Sails Italy cost €2.950 Euros, including tax. The cost of sails will be fixed for a period of time. Long-lasting but high-quality sail cloth has been used for the mainsail, jib and gennacker.

Designs from this loft, founded by the great sailor Giorgio Zuccoli and now in the hands of the experienced Pablo Soldano, have been used to win world titles, European championships and Olympic medals.

ORC International World Championship Open For Entries
Flensburg, Germany: The Offshore Racing Congress (ORC) and Flensburger Segel Club (FSC) are pleased to announce the 2010 ORC International (ORCi) World Championship is now open for entries. This is the only ISAF-sanctioned offshore World Championship, and will be held in Flensburg, Germany over 5-11 September 2010.

The event starts with Registration and Measurement over Sunday and Monday, 5-6 September, followed by the first day of inshore racing on Tuesday, 7 September. The following two days are scheduled for offshore racing, with inshore resuming on Friday and Saturday, 10-11 September. Should conditions require, Sunday 12 September is being held as a reserve day. Seven inshore races scored at 1.0 points each are scheduled, along with a short offshore race scored at 1.25 points and a long offshore race scored at 1.75 points. This format is mandated by the ORC's "Green Book" of championship event standards.

Besides the usual home-court advantages over visiting teams, the German ORCi fleet will also have ample opportunity to test themselves prior to the Worlds, with numerous regattas and training sessions being held for the fleet in the next few months. The first is the "Go for Speed" seminars, organized by the Deutscher Segler-Verband (DSV) and held at the DSV building in Hamburg on 17-18 April for classroom sessions on topics such as sail trim, rules, weather, preparation and crew management, followed by on-water training over 23-25 April in Keil with Olympic Gold medalist Jesper Bank and his team of experts in a session offered with the help of Elvstrom Sails.

Another opportunity to tune up for the Worlds will be in the German ORCi Offshore Championship, which is organized in two parts. The first, held over 21-24 May, is offshore (long distance) racing in the North Sea at Helgoland as part of Nordseewoche, with the second being inshore (windward-leeward) racing held over 21-23 June in the Baltic as part of Kieler Woche.

Favorites among the German teams include Christian Plump and his modified Rodman 42 Beluga Racing, winner last year's ORCi European Championship in Ystad, Sweden and a perennial victor in numerous other ORCi events. Other teams to watch include John Friedrichsen's X-332 Chinook and Peter Sueselbeck's brand-new Farr-designed Beneteau First 40 Westwind. A sistership in Australia won the prestigious Rolex Sydney-Hobart Race in ORCi, so this team will definitely be one to watch.

For more information and entry details for the 2010 ORCi World Championship, visit the FSC's ORCi Worlds website at

For more information on the DSV's Go for Speed seminar, visit

For more information on the German Offshore Championship, visit and

Every Bit Of Speed Counts
Ullman Sails The first event of the season is over. The crew isn't as rusty as last week, you successfully made it around the racecourse a few times and the boat is finally starting to feel fast again. How are the sails? Ullman Sails has been building and servicing racing sails for over 40 years. Our experienced sailmakers can help evaluate your inventory, recommend repairs or upgrades, and give top tuning and trim advice. We're ready to help you find the extra speed this season.

Ullman Sails - Make an investment in your performance.

Contact a local Ullman loft and visit

Rolex Commodores' Cup Door Remains Open For Class One Entries
The RYA is putting a final call out for Class one entries for RYA Team GBR, the team set to compete at the 2010 Rolex Commodores' Cup, as the selection trials for Class two and three entries for the team get underway this weekend (April 24-25) at the closing event of the Warsash SC Spring Series.

As in 2008, RYA Team GBR can enter four teams in the event, with each team comprising one boat in three specified IRC class Rating bands. This year the RYA is aiming to select three teams from the South and one from the North of the UK naming them, Team GBR Red, Blue, White and Black.

Looking to sign up more Class one entries, the RYA is holding open the door to interested parties making an exception to the selection trials allowing for any final Class one entries. Chair of Selectors Roger Wilson explains: "We are delighted with the response we've had to our call for entries to the trials and our Class two and three prospects for 2010's Team look to be in good shape. However we are still looking for two more Class one boats, even if they are unable to take part in the present trial races."

For Class two and three entries the opening trials event this weekend will see the thirteen boats go head-to-head for the first time, each vying to impress RYA Team GBR's selectors with their performance and results.

A tough mix of inshore and offshore racing, the biennial Rolex Commodores' Cup is an intense seven-day racing programme for IRC (endorsed) rated yachts that will take place on the testing waters in and around the Solent from Saturday 15 August to Saturday 21 August 2010.

The three class band are
Class 3 - 1.025 - 1.074 (Displacement Length Ratio (DLR) not exceeding 215)
Class 2 - 1.075 - 1.119 (DLR not exceeding 200)
Class 1 - 1.120 - 1.230 (DLR not exceeding 200)
The selection trials are scheduled as follows.

Inshore Races
24-25 April: Warsash SC Spring Series
22-23 May: Royal Southern YC Summer Series One

Offshore Race
15 May: RORC De Guingard Bowl

Entrants will also be required to compete in the GBR IRC Championships 25-27 June.


Valencia Confirmed as Fourth Venue of the RC 44 Championship Tour
Photo by Nico Martinez, Click on image to enlarge.

RC 44 Championship Tour The RC 44 Class announces today that the fourth stage of the Championship Tour 2010 will take place in Valencia, Spain, on July 27 - August 1. The RC 44 Valencia Cup will follow the regattas held in Dubai (UAE), Lake Traunsee (AUS) and Copenhagen (DEN) earlier in the year.

With six events spread in the Middle-East, Europe and the United States, it involves up to twelve international teams that include last year's winner Team No Way Back (Pieter Heerema / Ray Davies), Artemis (Torbjorn Tornqvist / Terry Hutchinson), CEEREF (Igor Lah / Rod Davis), BMW ORACLE Racing (Larry Ellison / Russell Coutts), Team Aqua (Chris Bake / Cameron Appleton), Team Islas Canarias Puerto Calero (Jose Juan and Daniel Calero / Jose Maria Ponce), Katusha (Paul Cayard), Team Sea Dubai (Markus Wieser), RC 44 Challenge (James Spithill) and Team Austria (Rene Mangold / Christian Binder).

"Spain has a long tradition in organising top level sailing events", comments the RC 44 Class manager Bertrand Favre. "It is important for us as a Class, as well as for the team owners to compete in this country. The RC 44 World Championship will also take place in Spain, in Lanzarote in October, which is great."

The RC 44 Valencia Cup will begin on Tuesday with the match racing event. After a full round robin held over two days, team owners will take the helm for three days of fleet races.

The calendar for the RC 44 Championship Tour 2010 is confirmed as:

February 22 - 27 - Al Maktoum Sailing Trophy - United Arab Emirates - Dubai
April 29 - May 4 - RC44 Austria Cup - Austria, Lake Traunsee - Gmunden
June 8 -13 - RC44 Copenhagen Cup - Danemark - Copenhagen
July 27 - August 1 - RC 44 Valencia Cup - Spain - Valencia
October 11 - 16 - RC44 World Championship Puerto Calero Islas Canarias Cup - Spain, Canary Islands - Puerto Calero
December 7 - 12 - RC 44 Miami Cup - United States - Miami

Young & Old, Ancient & Modern
Pictured: Ocean Pearl. Click on image to enlarge.

Round the Island Race So many of the boats that enter this extraordinary race have a fascinating provenance and the Island Sailing Club, organisers of this 79th edition of the Round the Island Race, is delighted to welcome back previous competitors to the Race this year along with a healthy turnout of first timers and/or totally novice crews. For the latter, the Club has put together a very handy First Timers' Guide for download at and perusal at leisure. Some of the 'older timers' might even find it a useful and informative aide memoire.

Racing in the Traditional Gaffer Class, Ocean Pearl was built in 1933 by Nobles of Fraserburgh and registered at Peterhead in Aberdeenshire. At 37ft 6in LWL, she was just under the 40ft length restrictions, which meant that she could fish within the three-mile limit of shore, and between 1933 and 1939 she was worked with nets and lines out of Peterhead. Between 1939 and 1945 she was requisitioned by the Navy and served as a supply vessel in Scapa Flow, before returning to the fishing industry after the end of the war.

In 1948 she was owned by a J. William Tait, who fished her until 1967, before selling her to Joseph Anthony Moore Phillips, father of Captain Mark Phillips, the first husband of HRH Princess Anne, who based her at Whitby, North Yorkshire. In 1981, three owners later, she was taken to Staines in Middlesex to be restored, but was eventually abandoned in a disused tarmac works, where she lay for 15 years before being taken to Combes Boatyard in West Sussex.

Nick Gates took over ownership in 1999 and over the past 10 years has rebuilt her, converting her from motor to sail. She is rigged as a Manx nobby, with standing lug main and mizzen, and sets 1600 sq ft of canvas.

Seahorse May 2010
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine

Natural-born trimmer
The best Cup sailors are staying busy. Louay Habib asks Andy Hemmings how...

Terry Hutchinson in Auckland, Dee Smith in Valencia, Dobbs Davis in Hamburg, a very cold front in Switzerland ... and Bruno Trouble in seventh heaven

World news
A new PRB for Riou, Cammas (and Peyron) keeps the faith, tall ship with a difference, Flinders Islet report and Dawn Riley finds 'gainful'. Ivor Wilkins, Rob Mundle, Patrice Carpentier, Carlos Pich, Dobbs Davis

Paul Cayard
And many key moves may already be in place...

If you haven't subscribed to Seahorse already we're keen to help you attend to that! - Please use the following promotional link and enjoy the hefty Scuttlebutt Europe discount... and it gets even better for 2 and 3 year subscriptions...

Safran Refit Complete
Photo by Jean-Marie Liot / DPPI. Click on image to enlarge.

Safran After a winter refit lasting two and a half months, Marc Guillemot's boat that finished in third place in the last Vendee Globe and won the last transatlantic race, was put back in the water on Friday 16th April in the harbour in la Trinite-sur-Mer in Southern Brittany. A busy race season now lies ahead for Safran, who will be back out sailing again some time next week.

Between six and eight people worked in the yard to ensure the grey and orange monohull would improve her potential. "The refit was carried out in two stages," explained Thierry Brault, the Team manager. "After a complete overhaul of the hull, the structure, the keel, mast and all the necessary repairs, we set about reducing the weight of Safran. To achieve that, we were once again able to take advantage of the expertise of the engineers in the Safran Group. So we made more weight savings by changing the coach roof for example, but without compromising its strength."

By the middle of next week, Safran will be out sailing again in Quiberon Bay before heading for Douarnenez at the end of the month to take part in the Grand Prix. She will be facing a new rival there: "Vincent Riou will be there with his new boat, created using the same hull mould as Safran. This first confrontation will therefore be particularly interesting. After that we will continue in June with a crewed race around Spain."

But the big event on the 2010 calendar is of course the Route du Rhum, which will start from St. Malo on 31st October. "This event marked the very beginning of my links with Safran. Four years ago, we hired a boat to take part. I didn't have the right weapon back then, but this time things are completely different."

World's Smallest Tall Ships Come To London
Click on image to enlarge.

World's Smallest Tall Ship Two 30 foot long tall ships made their first visit to London on Monday 19 April and are due to be at the West India Dock, Canary Wharf, for two weeks: they are T.S. BOB ALLEN and T.S. CAROLINE ALLEN, specially designed and built to take groups of 5 youngsters aged 10 and over. The brigs have two masts with 10 sails and a hundred ropes and for two hours will allow these new sailors to share the fun of sailing a tall ship for the first time.

The brigs will do day sails with London primary school children from Tower Hamlets before making the traditional trip for any ship visiting London and sailing under Tower Bridge (Friday 30th April). Because of their size - and unique in the history of tall ships going through Tower bridge - they are due to do this without the bridge opening.

The brigs are operated by Cowes (IoW) based charity Little Brig Sailing Trust ( ) and allow young sailors their first chance to sail a tall ship. They have to work as a team to set the sails, steer and make the brig move.

- both brigs are coded by the Maritime and Coastguard Authority (MCA)
- to tell them apart CAROLINE ALLEN has a red hull; BOB ALLEN's is blue
- a brig is a sailing vessel with two masts with square sails on both masts
- the brigs are expected to go through Tower Bridge at approx. 1000 (10 a.m.) on Friday 30th April. We will have at least one media boat in the water; there are also a limited number of places onboard the brigs.

Old Pulteney Row to the Pole Launched
Row to the Pole British explorer Jock Wishart and Old Pulteney Single Malt Scotch Whisky have unveiled a remarkable mission to conquer what could be one of the world's last great 'firsts': the first rowing attempt to one of the world's Poles.

Announced at a reception in London's Watermen's Hall this morning, 'Old Pulteney Row to the Pole' will see Jock and a 5-strong crew brave some of the harshest conditions on earth as they row in a specially designed boat through Arctic waters to reach the pole - a feat of extreme physical and mental endurance that has never before been attempted and if successful, will rank alongside the first row across the Atlantic.

The challenge will take place in July/August 2011 and is of global significance as both a pioneering maritime adventure and an environmental expedition. The planned 450 mile route across the Arctic sea starts in Resolute Bay in Canada with timing being of the essence as the final section of the journey is only navigable for a few weeks of the year before refreezing. It has only become possible to consider an attempt like this in recent years due to the increase in seasonal ice melt and the much-documented deterioration of the Arctic landscape.

The adventure will be captured online and on camera for UK and international audiences. It will follow Jock's extraordinary preparations and the 4-6 week long row where his team will face dramatic ice-bound coastlines and shifting sea-ice barriers on their voyage and their haul of the boat over land which is necessary to complete the journey.

The Old Pulteney Row to the Pole will be the first polar expedition to involve rowing since Ernest Shackleton's men took to their boats to save their lives in the South Pole, on his now legendary 1916 Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition.

Jock is established as one of the UK's leading adventurers and explorers, with a successful background in polar exploration, rowing and extreme navigational feats. He led the team which established fifteen new world speed records for powered circumnavigation and captained the team that broke the London to Paris rowing record in 1999. He has a lifetime interest in polar exploration and in 1992 journey he was part of the first team to walk unsupported to the Geomagnetic North Pole.

Featured Brokerage
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Iconic Ben Lexcen design offshore and harbour racer. Has competed for New Zealand in Kenwood and Southern Cross Cups, raced Fiji, Noumea many times. Still a good performer with a great sail wardrobe and could be converted to a great fast offshore cruising yacht.

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The Last Word
The idea that all ideas are partly true, partly false, and partly meaningless is partly true, partly false and partly meaningless. -- Hagbard Celine

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