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
Rock 'n Roll Thursday
Antigua Sailing Week burst back into action after Presidente Lay Day with some terrific rock and roll action off the South Coast of Antigua on the Peters & May Race Day 4. The trade winds were back with 16 knots from the south-east, piping up to full-on foam up in 20 knot gusts.
With 28 yachts 50ft or over at Antigua Sailing Week, there were some seriously hair-raising starts as the goliaths powered to windward off Rendezvous Beach. Tony Langley's TP52, Gladiator was fully launched, covering the 16 mile windward leeward course in just over an hour.
Try as they might, Piet Vroon's Dutch Ker 51, Tonnerre 4 could not hold onto the powerful British TP52's coat tails, but seized the opportunity in the first race of the day when Gladiator shredded a spinnaker. Tonnerre 4 passed Gladiator only to see their own kite blown to bits. Gladiator took both races to win CSA 3, even with a race to spare tomorrow. Tonnerre 4 is assured of second place and the only battle remaining in the class is for the last podium spot. Bernie Evan Wong's Antigua TP52 Team Taz-Conviction has a point advantage over Adrian Lee's Cookson 50, Lee Overlay Partners.
CSA 6 has also been decided. Ross Applebey's Royal Southern Yacht Club team racing Oyster 48 Scarlet Oyster is untouchable with a race to spare. Scarlet Oyster won both of today's races. Kay-Johannes Wrede's German Swan 44, Best Buddies is assured of second place and Carlo Falcone's Caccia alla Volpe will take third, regardless of the result of tomorrow's last race.
Sir Hugh Bailey's CS40, Gypsy-UGo, along with Gladiator remain the only two teams to post straight bullets for the series. Chris Body's J/122, El Ocaso lost their winning streak, placing fifth and third in today's races. Hot on their heels is Richard Matthews' Team Oystercatcher racing Grand Soleil 43 Quokka which won both of today's races. El Ocaso needs a top four finish tomorrow to be sure of winning CSA 5.
Clipper Race Fleet Departs Seattle
The international Clipper Round the World Yacht Race teams departed Bell Harbor, Seattle, this afternoon (April 28) in front of crowds watching the Parade of Sail from the shore led by 'home' team Visit Seattle.
After motorsailing the 120 nautical miles to the official race start location overnight, the fleet will have a Le Mans start at 1500 local time on Friday 29 April near Tattoosh Island.
The race to Panama is 4208 nautical miles long.
The big question is whether to take the inshore or offshore route. The Californian Current flows south, but the helping hand this gives the fleet can be counteracted by heating effects from the North American land mass which might change the winds unfavourably.
The race down to the coast of Mexico should be a fast one but as the breeze becomes lighter, the racing becomes more intense. Conditions near the ITCZ (Inter Tropical Convergence Zone - or Doldrums) could decide the final finishing positions.
The fleet will finish off Panama on the Pacific Ocean side before transiting the 41 nautical miles of the canal, before beginning Race 11 to New York on the Atlantic Ocean side.
Star Sailors League Grand Slam
SSL City Grand Slam is coming to Hamburg from May 2nd to 7th on Lake Alster. You can watch every races LIVE on live.starsailors.com from any device for free with expert commentary from special studio guests. On the water, the latest in hi-tech camera technology, as well as Virtual Eye 3D Graphics, will provide thrilling viewing.
Decoding Sailing's Secret Symbols
Hidden within the vast storage rooms of London's National Maritime Museum are hundreds of historic sea flags rarely seen by the public -- until now.
From delicate silk 19th-century Chinese flags to bold Nazi Germany prints, the extensive collection of fabrics is an intriguing porthole into another time.
These vivid fabrics have also left their mark on the English language.
"During wartime it was common practice to hoist the flag of the enemy, only to run up your own colors just before firing," Davey says.
"The common phrase 'to show one's true colors' derives from this activity."
View the collection: collections.rmg.co.uk
Extreme Sailing Series Qingdao
In Muscat, Oman Air finished on the podium in 16 of the 19 races completed and claimed 10 outright wins which gave them a lead by 33 points over Red Bull Sailing Team in second place and earned them maximum points on the overall leaderboard.
"We were very happy with our performance in Muscat, especially after the run up where we were struggling with our boat speed and trimming," explained Greenhalgh.
"Hopefully we can resume where we left off - we will be pushing hard but between Muscat and Qingdao, everyone will have studied the videos so we are expecting the other teams to have made big improvements.
"In Qingdao the wind can be full on with big shifts so it could be tricky. We can see 50 degree shifts with 20 knots of wind on one side of the course and none on the other but it's the same for everyone and the best man always wins!"
Racing in Fushan Bay starts on Friday 29 April with a day of open water racing before the teams take to the Stadium on Saturday 30 April.
With the eight teams, made up of elite-level sailors from 16 different nations, ready to begin racing on Friday 29 April, here is your guide to following the non-stop action in Qingdao, both on site and online.
On the 29 April, the website will go into race mode, serving as a 'one-stop-shop' for following the action online, including live video streaming, SAP Sailing Analytics, dynamic leaderboards and live social media updates.
Fans around the globe can watch the racing live online at the following times:
Sunday 1 May: 1530-1700 (GMT+8)
Monday 2 May: 1515-1645 (GMT+8)
SAP Sailing Analytics will be available on the official event website at the following times:
Friday 29 April: 1400-1700 (GMT+8)
Saturday 30 April: 1430-1700 (GMT+8)
Sunday 1 May: 1430-1700 (GMT+8)
Monday: 1430-1645 (GMT+8)
America's Cup To Make Early Appearance at NYC Sailor's Ball This Friday
As excitement begins to build around the 2016 America's Cup races coming to New York City next weekend, grab an early chance to snap a selfie with the actual Cup while enjoying an open bar and rubbing elbows with America's Cup sailors and New York sailing enthusiasts.
This Friday night (April 29), a week ahead of the America's Cup races, the nonprofit NY Harbor Sailing Foundation is holding their annual black tie gala to celebrate sailing in NYC, while also raising money for a kids program aimed at teaching New York kids how to sail. No word on whether Sir Ben Ainslie will be in attendance, but there will be unnamed America's Cup sailors in attendance.
The America's Cup races will be held on the Hudson the following weekend of May 7-8, and crowds are sure to be dense between Battery Park and Brookfield Place. This is the first time the America's Cup races have been in NYC since 1920, and the excitement in the sailing community and even Gothamite landlubbers is on the rise.
Dubarry Ultima - Classic Craftsmanship
It's been said of Ireland that it's a lovely country, just needs a roof. True, we get more than our fair share of rain from the storms that barrel in from the North Atlantic, but it's not so bad - it's not for nothing that we're known as the Emerald Isle.
In this part of the world we're also well used to making our living on the sea, in the sturdy Galway Hookers built by hand with traditional tools by local boatbuilders. These bluff-bowed gaff cutters have plied their treacherous trade on the often vengeful waters of the Bay for over 200 years. If ever there was a place where folk would appreciate a quality traditional sea boot - and had the craftsmanship to make one - it's here.
So it's here, in the town of Ballinasloe, a stone's throw from the Shannon and just inland of Galway Bay, that Dubarry started making boots in 1937. We've honed our traditional boot-making virtuosity, found sources of the finest quick-drying, long-lasting leathers, and perfected the technology behind a warm, waterproof classic boot with award-winning grip. What else could we call the world's best traditional sea boot, other than Ultima?
Dubarry Ultima - Where will you go in yours?
Irish Classic Boats In Top Places In International Awards
Tern. Click on image to enlarge.
At a ceremony which was attended by more than 120 specialists and key individuals from places as diverse as Finland, Spain, Switzerland and Italy in addition to the UK and Ireland, the rare skills and painstaking patience involved in bringing old boats back to vibrant elegance and full seagoing style were given their proper recognition.
With all due respects to the readers of Classic Boat magazine who voted on the many nominations for this top award, the yacht which was runner-up is a much better-looking boat than the winner, as she is the beautiful William Fife-designed Belfast Lough One-Design Association Class I 37ft yacht Tern, originally built by John Hilditch in Carrickfergus with seven sisters-ships in just five months in 1896-1897.
The new McConaghy Classic 57 and the McConaghy Classic 67 combine the classic styling of Hoek Design, with the benefits of a performance cruising yacht, all built will some of the world's most advanced production methods and materials.
These two yachts will be built in semi-production, but allow a level of customisation and owner involvement to ensure every yacht is unique. The yachts will be built at McConaghy's state of the art facilities near Hong Kong, the same facilities that build many of the worlds leading race yachts.
The composite hulls employ carbon for structural reinforcement, carbon will also feature in items including the clear coat carbon wheel, pedestal and deck features.
Hoek Design hallmarks are evident in both yachts including long overhangs, attractive sheer, an open bulwark, a counter stern and low profile superstructure with wraparound windows.
Melges Performance Sailboats has introduced the new Melges 40, designed by Botin Partners Naval Architecture and built by Premier Composite Technologies.
A canting keel and large sail plan aboard the Melges 40 increases upwind performance and creates a dramatically faster, thrilling downwind run.
Already, top international owners and teams have committed to the Melges 40 program in full anticipation of sailing by Fall 2016. The very first Melges 40 World Series event will take place in 2017.
Slovenian boat builder Elan has not produced a new model in the past three years, however this looks likely to change, following the announcement of the GT5. This is based on the 40ft Rob Humphreys designed E5 model, which started life as the Elan 400 in 2013. The GT5 hull will have more freeboard, plus a deck saloon style layout that will provide significantly more internal volume than the E5, which is expected to continue in production alongside the new boat.
The GT5 also benefits from a generously proportioned cockpit that includes an al fresco barbecue, fridge and sink unit. Below decks, much of the plan form of the accommodation will be similar to the well-proven layout of the E5, but the entire boat will feel significantly larger, with better natural light and views of the outside world. In addition the galley will be moved to the forward part of the main saloon, following a trend first seen in larger high quality yachts such as the Grand Soleil 50. There will also be room for more complex systems including the option of a generator and air conditioning.
While Elan is ready to take orders for the GT5, the company has yet to publically announce when the first boat will be launched.
The new Wally 110 Barong D was successfully launched during a private ceremony hosted by her enthusiastic owners, gathering all the people involved in the design and construction of this fantastic sailing superyacht.
The 33,5-meter Barong D is the third Wally delivered to a faithful repeat client, a truly passionate and experienced yachtsman who replaced his Wally 94 Barong C, which in turn in 2005 substituted his first Wally, the 80-footer Barong B of 2000.
The Frers naval architecture created the latest generation hi performance super yacht characterised by the wide hull uniquely camouflaged by classic lines reflecting Barong D's cruising attitude.
The interior layout reflects the owners' extensive cruising requirements, featuring the forward Owner's suite with two large separate beds to favour the comfort under sail, a double guest cabins on each side, and a spacious main saloon amidships. The crew and service area with galley, crew mess, two double cabins, and the engine room is aft to provide max privacy. All cabins have en-suites. The interior styling is developed by Wally and combines pickled oak for the joinery with dark blue upholstery and gloss carbon soles.
Barong D is the 44th sailing yacht launched by the Monegasque brand. Her delivery is scheduled at the end of May, after two weeks of sea trials.
1992 ASSO99 Stockmaritime. 18,000 EUR. Located in Hamburg, Germany.
Notable Race Results:
1st - Elbe Ausklang - 2014
5th - European Championship - 2013, best german boat
4th - Tjorn Runt of 411 yachts - 2012
1st - Peter Gast Schiffahrtsregatta - 2012
1st ORC - Elbauf-Regatta - 2011
1997 Farr 45. 50,000 GBP Located in Port Hamble, UK.
A great example of the ever successful Farr 45 design is now available.
Professionally maintained from new and with a mainsail from 2014, she poses an exceptionally cost effective way of enjoying some high performance sailing on a big boat scale.
Carkeek 440 - NEW BOAT
An ultra-powerful new 44-footer that is directly descended from Carkeek's all-conquering HPR 40. Expect this to be an offshore mile muncher every bit as much as it's certain
See the RaceboatsOnly.com collection at seahorsemagazine.com/brokerage/
The Last Word
And she's got brains enough for two, which is the exact quantity the girl who marries you will need. -- P. G. Wodehouse
Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see www.scuttlebutteurope.com/advertise.html