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
B2 Confirmed As Overall Winner Of The 2015 Rolex Middle Sea Race
B2. Click on image to enlarge.
After over three days of racing, B2 was the IRC winner by seconds from Vincenzo Onorato's Italian Cookson 50, Mascalzone Latino. The narrow victory was exemplified by the fact that Mascalzone Latino was the overall winner of the ORC class.
"Crossing the finish line with an advantage of nine seconds, on corrected time, was a big surprise, but even having losing to Mascalzone we would have been happy, because we know both teams did a great race and we both would be fair winners." Commented B2's navigator, Nacho Postigo."I think the 50-52 feet is a good length for this race. The TP52 is an all-round boat, with very little weaknesses, a good compromise between rating and speed.
This is the second occasion that Michele Galli's TP52, B2 has won the trophy, winning the race overall in 2013.
RS:X World Championships: Oman As France And Poland Lead The Field
Thirteen knots of wind, mid-afternoon, was enough to create thrilling speeds for the men's fleets both upwind and down and impressive tactical racing.
After a postponement due to lack of wind, the women were first off and managed to complete two races in generally light conditions.
Malgorzata Bialecka (POL) posted two second places to slip into the lead of the Women's World Championship ahead of Peina Chen (CHN), event leader so far.
The tempo has increased in the Men's Gold Fleet too with new faces appearing at the front including 27-year-old Dorian van Rijsselberge (NED) - gold medallist at London 2012. Van Rijsselberge reveled in the freshening breeze and snapped up the first two races of the day. Although Pierre Le Coq (FRA) still retains the overall lead, there are now just six points between him and Piotr Myszka (POL) who is in second.
There are three remaining races in the Final Series Friday, starting at 12:00 local time (CET+2). The top 10 from the Gold fleets (Men and Women) in the Final Series will then go forward to Saturday's double points-scoring Medal Race to determine the overall winners of the RS:X World Windsurfing Championships.
Top five men's gold fleet:
1. Pierre Le Coq, FRA, 25 points
2. Piotr Myszka, POL, 31
3. Mateo Sanz Lanz, SUI, 36
4. Aichen Wang, CHN, 41
5. Dorian van Rijsselberge, NED, 42
Top five women's gold fleet:
1. Malgorzata Bialecka, POL, 15 points
2. Peina Chen, CHN, 16
3. Zofia Noceti-Klepacka, POL, 33
4. Marina Alabau Neira, ESP, 33
5. Bryony Shaw, USA, 33
*|YOUTUBE:[$vid=Xk1usnuaSu8, $max_width=500, $title=N, $border=N, $trim_border=N, $ratings=N, $views=N]|*
45th BVI Spring Regatta & Sailing Festival: Register Now, Drink Free Later
To celebrate the regatta's milestone anniversary, organizers will reward one crew (registered by Dec. 31), with free drink tickets in the amount of the regatta registration fee.
Warm Water, Hot Racing And Cool Parties capture the essence of the event. On the water, sailors compete in idyllic conditions with windward/ leeward courses and use the stunning islands to race around as well. On land, they are treated to nightly entertainment with dancing on the beach and delicious food vendors all in one location: Nanny Cay Resort and Marina. As part of the anniversary celebrations, fireworks will bring the 2016 regatta to a close after the award ceremony.
The VX One Class has already confirmed 12 boats will be here for their inaugural VX One Caribbean Cup Racing on the One Design Course area. Bare boats and competitive spinnaker race boats have their own course area on the water.
For more information about the BVI Spring Regatta & Sailing Festival or to register, visit: www.bvispringregatta.org
Naval Academy Reinstates Celestial Navigation
The same techniques guided ancient Polynesians in the open Pacific and led Sir Ernest Shackleton to remote Antarctica, then oriented astronauts when the Apollo 12 was disabled by lightning, the techniques of celestial navigation.
A glimmer of the old lore has returned to the Naval Academy.
Officials reinstated brief lessons in celestial navigation this year, nearly two decades after the full class was determined outdated and cut from the curriculum.
That decision, in the late 1990s, made national news and caused a stir among the old guard of navigators.
Maritime nostalgia, however, isn't behind the return.
Rather, it's the escalating threat of cyber attacks that has led the Navy to dust off its tools to measure the angles of stars.
After all, you can't hack a sextant. -- Tim Prudente in The Capital Gazette
Chamber Optimism After America's Cup
New experiences brought to Bermuda because of the America's Cup should become a permanent fixture, according to Chamber of Commerce executive director Kendaree Burgess.
Ms Burgess and other seniors members of the Chamber told The Royal Gazette of their optimism generated by the weekend's festivities.
"The atmosphere was electric, there was ample opportunity to sell and showcase services," said Ms Burgess.
"My hope is that we can take some of the experiences previously unavailable in Bermuda and make them a permanent part of our landscape: things like alfresco food and beverage, pedestrianised streets and concerts.
"Bermuda and Bermudian business worked together with a sense of camaraderie and real Island pride, and it came through in a big way."
Chris Garland, head of the restaurant division said: "The impact was felt in the village and out. Restaurants were sold out with group bookings, corporate events, sponsor activations and endless turnover of Bermudians and visitors.
Back In Black
The new Hugo Boss IMOCA 60. Click on image to enlarge.
Twelve years later, after a chapter of bitter disappointments including two Vendee Globe retirements, it was on the 2011 race, following a back to basics approach with an older, reliable Farr design, that he finished in second place, sailing a fantastic race with Spain's Guillermo Altadill.
Altadill was the catalyst to their choice to put reliability ahead of constantly seeking a silver bullet and the recipe worked. To a great extent the 2011 Transat Jacque Vabre got the money off Thomson's back as they delivered a crucial podium which was to be the foundation of his third place in the last Vendee Globe.
Now Thomson is back. He has an extremely sexy, potent looking new VPLP/Verdier design, the latest Hugo Boss which most consider to be the most radical of the new foil assisted designs.
But while the new, back in black, design clearly has huge potential it is completely unproven. He confirms the boat is three months behind where they wanted to be. They have only just got to their 'drop dead' date, to be ready for this race. And so, he says, hopes, expectations, aspirations are pretty much iced for the moment. His objective is now to learn the boat, to get to Itajaí and take stock of what they have assimilated. But, he notes, 'Guillermo and I are both highly competitive'
Hull Material: Composite
Current Price: On application
With the Extreme Sailing Series™ adopting a new boat for 2016, there is a unique opportunity to purchase a fleet of up to 10 Extreme 40 catamarans as a set, or individually, that are priced to sell.
Superfast, exciting to sail and to watch, the Extreme 40 catamaran was developed by TornadoSport in 2005 to bring sailing to the public on short courses in stadium settings.
Built in carbon-fibre, these "flying machines" are 40ft long and have a beam of 23ft. They have a top speed of around 40 knots. Complete with sails, shipping container, with spares and road container negotiable, these well-maintained boats could offer excellent corporate entertainment or activation around another race campaign.
Available from mid-December to ship from Europe/Australia/GCC.
South Atlantic High The Final Obstacle For Remaining Clippper Teams
The South Atlantic High is the last remaining major obstacle for the boats still at sea, with progress slow in the final approaches to the finish line off Cape Town, South Africa.
Unicef, PSP Logistics and Visit Seattle are all in good wind now, but must carefully monitor for the wind holes created by the shadow of Table Mountain the closer in they get.
Race 2: The Stormhoek Race to the Cape of Storms is being run on an elapsed time basis and the final positions and points will be awarded in ascending elapsed time. The shortest time wins. This is to account for the late start of LMAX Exchange and Qingdao after repairs following damage caused outside of racing during the stopover in Brazil. They started 3 days, 11 hours and 10 minutes after the rest of the fleet.
Qingdao and LMAX Exchange are taking very different southerly and northerly routes in attempts to avoid the high pressure system.
The final elapsed race times for the finished yachts stand as follows:
GREAT Britain: - 338h 30m
Derry-Londonderry-Doire - 338h 40m
Garmin - 339h 02m
Mission Performance - 342h 53mins
ClipperTelemed+ - 347h 39 mins
Da Nang-Viet Nam - 351h 12 mins
IchorCoal - 351h 18 mins
World Sailing Needs More Than A Coat Of Paint
While ISAF about to change its name to World Sailing, widely expected to do so at the Annual General Meeting in Sanya China (November 7-14th), much more is needed to improve the world-wide state of play than a coat of paint.
Phil Jones, the former CEO of Yachting Australia and now the CEO of Athletics Australia long believed that ISAF needed to improve its slow decision making and poor long term planning processes were really hurting our sport. He was not alone.
For instance the ISAF Sailing World Cup has over the last 12 months, touted as the flagship event for the World body, may have a bright future but there have been serious hiccups in recent times, with a mid-Olympic quadrennium decisions causing major issues.
'Scheduling is the major issue and fixing dates for the ISAF World Cup events will allow the option of the classes and other event organisers to work their calendars around that.' said Alistair Fox, ISAF's Head of Events.
Full editorial by Rob Kothe and the Sail-World.com team:
Seawolf Is First Chinese Entry For 2016 Rolex China Sea Race
The 2016 Rolex China Sea Race will start on Wednesday 23 March at 13:20 hours (HKT) in Hong Kong's iconic Victoria Harbour and will finish 565-nm later in Subic Bay in the Philippines.
The Notice of Race has been published at www.rolexchinasearace.com and entries are open, with the all-Chinese crew of A40RC, Seawolf, one of the first to book their place on the start line. Having finished fourth in IRC Racer 2 division in the 2014 edition of the race, Y.F. Liu's Seawolf is targeting a top three finish in 2016.
The year 2016 marks the 28th edition of this biennial Offshore Category 1 race organized by the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club (RHKYC). Rolex has partnered the Club since 2007, as well as its flagship race the Rolex China Sea Race since 2008. One of the highlights for the Club will be hosting local and overseas boats at its Kellett Island base prior to the start.
The China Sea Race is renowned for its tactical challenges, requiring skill and training to succeed. The competing yachts negotiate both traditional and modern sea traffic before embarking on the open water section of the course to Subic Bay.
Asia's principal blue water race has retained the original Corinthian ethos that lies at the heart of Rolex's relationship with the sport, and is especially captivating thanks to a race start from Victoria Harbour, surrounded by the city's impressive high-rise panaroma.
Tim Patton Set To Reach Milestone
Tim Patton will celebrate a milestone at next month's Etchells World Championships in Hong Kong.
The experienced sailor is making his 25th appearance in the annual regatta, which features some of the top sailors in the world, as crew of Australian skipper Bill Steele, the former International Etchells Class chairman.
The Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club in conjunction with the Hong Kong Etchells Association will host this year's Etchells World Championships from November 1 to 7, with races to be sailed on the waters around "The Ninepins", located southeast of Clearwater Bay.
"Perfect conditions, lots of wind and offshore and also pretty big seas," said Patton, who competed at the previous Etchells Worlds held in Hong Kong in 1997.
Among the sailors with America's Cup ties in this year's Etchells Worlds fleet is Grant Simmer, the general manager of Oracle Team USA, holders of the "Auld Mug", who is competing as crew on board Australia skipper Graeme Taylor's boat, Magpie.
Patton, whose best showing at the Etchells Worlds was in 1988 when he was fourth in Sydney is one of two (Bermudan) sailors taking part in the championships, the other being Mark Watson who sailed on the winning yacht in this year's Trans-Atlantic Race. -- Colin Thompson
Last night's excerpt from Rob Kothe and Richard Gladwell's editorial on the America's Cup World Series in Bermuda had an incorrect link... the article was in SAIL-WORLD.COM...
They don't pull any punches, bless them...
2000 Mills 37, designed by Mark Mills and built by 2HO in Hamble. She went on to have a major overhaul and refit by 2HO in 2010. She comes with fantastic race history, she has been a trophy winner since her launch. Coming 3rd in her first Cowes Week Regatta in 2000, she went on to win the IT Regatta (now called the Silicon Cup), Cork Week 2002 and 2nd in the UK IRC nationals a month before. She was Class 1 winner in the Island Sailing Club's 2003 famous Round The Island Race and winner of her class in the 2005 Fastnet Race.
This Racer/Cruiser commission has proved how well a dual-purpose design can fulfill those roles. She has fulfilled all the desires of an owner who wanted "to have a nice boat, that's fun, gives good class racing and is able to go short-handed racing too." More recently she has completed the 2 handed Round Britain and Ireland Race in 2010 and the Fastnet race in 2011.
See the RaceboatsOnly.com collection at seahorsemagazine.com/brokerage/
The Last Word
People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone. -- Audrey Hepburn
Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see www.scuttlebutteurope.com/advertise.html