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Star World Championship
Coconut Grove, Florida, USA: Today was the final race of the 2016 Star World Championship. The wind was slow to build but finally came in at 7-8 knots from 060. It was blowing over Key Biscayne onto the course and this made for very shifty conditions and significant deltas of wind pressure.

After several attempted starts, we got racing albeit under the now standard "Black Flag". 14 boats were caught on the course side of the line prior to the starting gun. That probably means many more were not caught as it is very hard to see the line when 14 boats are over or on it.

Today's race was really all about a battle between Augie Diaz/Bruno Prada (USA) and Diego Negri/Sergio Lambertenghi (ITA). Only one point separated the two going into the last race for the Gold Star. Neither had won the Star World Championship. They were obviously keeping very close track of each other and started down toward the left end of the line.

Because of a better discard, if Negri did not finish in the top 6 positions, Diaz/Prada were assured of the win.

Just behind us in 5th was Augie Diaz, assuring himself of the Star Class World Championship. Diego Negri finished 7th and sailed a fantastic regatta finishing second for the third time in his career. His day will come... he deserves it.

I am very happy for Augie. He is a fine sailor and a finer gentleman! -- Paul Cayard

Final top ten

1. Augie Diaz / Bruno Prada, USA, 14 points
2. Diego Negri / Sergio Lambertenghi, ITA, 16
3. Brian Ledbetter / Joshua Revkin, USA, 25
4. Lars Schmidt Grael / Samuel Goncalves, BRA, 38
5. Luke Lawrence / Ian Coleman , USA, 39
6. Paul Cayard / Brian Fatih, USA, 45
7. Andrew Macdonald / Brad Nichol, USA, 49
8. Peter Vessella / Phil Trinter , USA, 50
9. George Szabo / Steve Mitchell, USA, 59
10. Robert Stanjek / Frithjof Kleen, GER, 73

Full results

Les Voiles De St. Barth
Photo by Ingrid Abery, Click on image for photo gallery.

Going into today, which was the fifth day of Les Voiles de St. Barth and the fourth scheduled for racing, many were in precarious positions on the scoreboard and needed to outwit their closest competitors to pick up a position or two to make top-three. Others had turned in perfect score lines, but knew today's fickle winds would leave them vulnerable.

The course - at 20 nautical miles for Maxis 1 and 2, CSA 0 and Multihulls, and 17 miles for CSA 1 through 4 plus Melges 24 and Class 40 - ran counter-clockwise around the island and was a good choice for many reasons. It was an opportunity for the sailors to take in the beautiful vistas of St. Barth; it gave officials the option to shorten course if needed; and it incorporated all aspects of a good race course as far as reaching, beating, running, and navigating around the rocks and small islands off the coast.

At the start, the six-knot winds, combined with current and slow-moving sailboats that became obstacles, made positioning a critical factor in establishing early leads. The Maxi 72 Momo and the TP 52 Vesper were perhaps the best examples of this, establishing huge margins in their classes (respectively Maxi 1 and CSA 0) by sticking close to the shoreline on the way to the first mark at Roches Roubes.

Unfortunately for Momo, which led its class the entire way around the island, a huge windless hole awaited them near the finish, and the Maxi 72 Proteus, with which they were tied for first place, was able to sail around them and put 20 boat lengths on them in the end.

Class winners:
Maxi 1: Proteus, USA 60722, Maxi 72/Judel Vrolijk, George Sakellaris (USA)
Maxi 2: Prospector, USA 52560, Farr CM60, Larry Landry/Paul McDowell/Dave Siwicki (USA)
CSA 0: Vesper, USA 52007, TP52, Jim Swartz (USA)
CSA 1: Lazy Dog, PUR 007, Melges 32, Sergio Sagramoso (PUR)
CSA 2: Humildad Zero, ARG 5086, Soto 53, Daniel Figueirido / Hernan Mones Ruiz
CSA 3: Corr's Lite Racing, ISV 52956, Hot Ticket, King 40, Peter Corr (ISV)
CSA 4: Credit Mutuel - Maximarine, FRA 35960, Nuit Blanche, Jeanneau 3200, Claude Granel / Marc Emig (Martinique)
Melges 24: Team Island Water World, ISV 605, Island Water World, Frits Bus
Multihull: Triple Jack, BVI 330M, Kelsall, Richard Wooldridge/Steve Davis
CSA 0 - IRC dual-score: Vesper, USA 52007, TP52, Jim Swartz (USA)
Class 40: Earendil, FRA 145, Catherine Pourre (FRA)

Hansen And Iversen Seize Moment To Claim First European Title
Sometimes a regatta can come down to a moment, and for Jena Hansen and Katja Iversen they seized the moment and claimed their first ever European title. The Danish duo trailed Italians and reigning European Champions Giulia Conti and Francesca Clapcich by four points entering the medal race, meaning they had to beat the Italians and put one boat in between them.

The Italians fell from third, a regatta winning position, to seventh by the windward mark. They fought bravely back through the race, but could only catch two of the boats and needed to settle for Silver. The Italian disappointment was evident, "There will be no more chances to be European Champions, as we retire after the games," said a clearly disappointed Conti. Her team mates consoled her, all knowing there would be the greater prize to shoot for on the horizon in Rio.

This medal race marks the second in a row that has not gone well for the Italians, who took a terrible turn in the 2016 49erFX World Championship in Clearwater and got stuck in a hole for 5 minutes while the rest of the fleet continued passed them.

Home waters were good to Spaniards this week, as Diego Botin and Iago Lopez also claimed the Bronze medal in a great medal race performance for them. These young guns have been on the rise for all of 2016, up to fifth during the 2016 World Championships before their team mates match raced them back due to an internal trials, a third place finish in Palma, and now a Bronze medal at the European Championship and the top European at the European Championship.

Out in front were Peter Burling and Blair Tuke, ever present champions in the 49er, followed by Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen, who sailed very cleanly into the Silver medal position and are gearing up for another big run with only four months to go until Rio.

The next regattas for most of these teams are the Sailing World Cup in Hyeres in late April and the 49er and 49erFX South American's in Rio, July 11-14th.

Top five, 49er
1. Peter Burling / Blair Tuke, NZL, 47 points
2. Nathan Outteridge / Iain Jensen, AUS, 107
3. Diego Botin / Iago Lopez Marra, ESP, 129
4. Nico Luca Marc Delle Karth / Nikolaus Leopold Resch, AUT, 132
5. John Pink / Stuart Bithell, GBR, 140

Top five, 49erFX
1. Jena Mai Hansen / Katja Salskov-Iversen, DEN, 84
2. Giulia Conti / Francesca Clapcich, ITA, 86
3. Tamara Echegoyen / Berta Betanzos, ESP, 101
4. Victoria Travascio / Maria Sol Branz, ARG, 101
5. Alexandra Maloney / Molly Meech, NZL, 106

Seahorse May 2016
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine

This time is it for real?
After years out in the wilderness a genuinely practical production wing rig should shortly be on the market. Oyvind Bordal

A beautiful thing
Paul Larsen is in love again (sorry, Helena). And, typical of the fastest sailor in the world, the subject of his latest attentions is very slim, very light, very pretty... and 100% carbon

Seahorse build table - Full bodied
The MAT1180 from Mark Mills further reinforces the move to proper IRC raceboats

Sailor of the Month
Both very creative... but in their own ways

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Women's Laser Radial World Championship
The regatta is back on schedule! Despite a late start due to light, midday winds, the Race Committee re-sailed the race that was abandoned yesterday (R4-Blue) and completed both races scheduled for today (R5 & R6 for both the Yellow & Blue fleets).

Race 4 for yesterday's Blue fleet started cleanly in a southwesterly breeze of 8 knots and clearing skies. The wind filled, and clocked right about 10 degrees, before R5 started cleanly for the Yellow fleet. A general recall, leading to a restart, held back the start of the race for the Blue fleet. Fleet splits were based on results through Race 3, from yesterday.

The wind continued to build as the skies cleared, reaching about 15 knots in the late afternoon. Both fleets completed Race 6, despite several general recalls, although this kept the competitors (and the race committee!) on the water into the early evening.

Today's results have shuffled the top of the score sheet, and, with five races completed, each competitor can discard one race from the total score.

Tomorrow (the fourth day of racing) is the final day of qualifying races, which determine the split between the Gold and Silver fleets for the remaining three days of the competition.

Top ten:
1. Marit Bouwmeester, NED, 9.0
2. Paige Railey, USA, 19.0
3. Alison Young, GBR, 23.0
4. Erika Reineke, USA, 23.0
5. Gintare Volungeviciute Scheidt, LTU, 24.0
6. Anne-Marie Rindom, DEN, 28.0
7. Manami Doi, JPN, 35.0
8. Brenda Bowskill, CAN, 35.0
9. Luca Falasca, ARG, 37.0
10. Lijia Xu, CHN, 38.0

Wild Oats XI Confirmed As A Starter For Audi Hamilton Island Race Week
The 30-metre long supermaxi Wild Oats XI, arguably the world's most successful ocean racing yacht, has been confirmed as a starter in the 33rd edition of Audi Hamilton Island Race Week next August.

As entries for Race Week soar at a record rate towards 100, Wild Oats XI is in Sydney being prepared for a return to racing after being forced to retire from the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race last December.

Wild Oats XI is now being campaigned by the Oatley family - Sandy, Ian and Ros - as a tribute to their father, sailing legend Bob Oatley AO, who passed away in January.

Wild Oats XI was forced out of the last Hobart race when she was struck by an unexpected and savage squall during the first night of racing. The crew rushed to reef the mainsail, but it tore so badly while being lowered retirement from the race became the only option. Until then it appeared that she and her arch rival, American supermaxi Comanche (Jim & Kristy Clarke), were positioning themselves for an exciting race for line honours in the 627 nautical mile classic. Comanche went on to be first into Hobart.

Since being launched in 2005 Wild Oats XI has earned the honour of being the most successful yacht to have contested the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race over its 71-year history, and Mark Richards the most successful skipper. Over those 11 years the supermaxi has secured an unprecedented eight line honours and is the only yacht to claim the triple-crown - line and handicap honours and a race record time - on two occasions, and to take four consecutive line honours. -- Rob Mundle

Hooray For Boaty McBoatface
The perils of crowdsourcing anything....

The Natural Environment Research Council have conducted a poll to help decide the name of its new £200m polar research vessel and the winning name is - RRS Boaty McBoatface - receiving 124,109 votes. Four times more than RRS Poppy-Mai, which came in second place.

The final naming decision lies with Duncan Wingham, chief executive of the NERC, who faces a tough dilemma, between the credibility of his organisation and the overwhelming burden of public opinion

'Lost' Canford Cup Trophy Returns To Poole Regatta
A yachting trophy which pre-dates the America's Cup and disappeared from public view for more than 150 years is to return to a Dorset regatta.

The Canford Cup was first awarded at the 1849 Poole Regatta, two years before the America's Cup was first won.

After being presented to the winner to keep, it went into private collections before re-emerging at an auction in London last year.

The cup will now be presented to the overall winner of the biannual regatta.

To ensure its safekeeping, the trophy - a George IV silver vase created in 1822 - will go on permanent display at Poole Museum.

The museum purchased the cup with donations from the Poole Regatta committee and Poole Yachting Association at auction in October.

It was last presented to Gleam - a 15-tonne cutter owned by P Roberts of the Southern Yacht Club in Southampton - which won the third race of the 1849 Poole Regatta.

Introducing The Camden Classics Cup
Lyman-Morse has partnered with the newly formed United States Classic Yacht Owners Association (USCYOA) and the Camden Yacht Club to present the Camden Classics Cup. Having another regatta in Maine will add momentum to Maine's classics racing scene established by the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta. The two race weekends will bookend the new Classics Week.

Classic Yachts, Spirit of Tradition and PHRF racing and cruising classes are planned.

Classics Week produced by the town of Camden and the Camden Yacht Club will feature a full schedule of events and activities including: a talk by Gary Jobson; Junior 420 and Opti racing; a visit by the Schooner America; a classic car show and more.

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The Last Word
One becomes older to become kinder, there is no mistake which I have not already made. -- Johanne Wolfgang van Goethe

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