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Three Leaders After Three Races
Photo by Max Ranchi, Click on image for photo gallery.

ORC Worlds Copenhagen, Denmark: Favorable 8-15 knot conditions in the opening day of the ORC World Championship 2016 gave race managers from the Royal Danish YC and the Egaa Sailing Club the opportunity to hold three inshore races, with three teams claiming the top of the leaderboard in each of three classes racing here off Skovshoved.

In Class A, it's a Swedish team hailing from just a few miles to the east in Malmo that is on top of a pack of 13 racers and cruiser/racer designs: Fredrik Alexandersson's Swan 45 Stell has come out of the starting blocks strong on a 1-3-2 score line, only 1 point ahead of Tarok VII, Erik Berth's similar Swan 45 design from this side of the straits. Tarok in turn is only one point ahead of a completely different boat type positioned now in third place, Yakimenko Vadim's TP 52 Freccia Rossa.

This tight racing was similarly close in the other classes, who were on shorter courses of about the same length in elapsed race time. This includes the two groups in Class C, where Bo Teichmann's J/112E Lance 12, being sailed by a mixed German and Dutch team that includes racing legend Bouwe Bekking, is on top of this group of 59 teams on impressive scores of 2-3-1.

Runner-up in the class is last year's Class C European champion, Patrik Forsgren's modified First 36.7 Pro4U/Malin. But this Swedish team's 9 points is also shared with two other teams: Steen Christiansen's local-based and brand new Italia 9.98 Happy Hour and another new Italia 9.98 - Jascha Bach's Dutch Bachyachting Racing Team - who happens to have the boat's designer aboard, Matteo Polli from Italy.

Polli's expertise was also applied in Class B, where new appendages and a new optimized sail plan on a proven design racing in ORC - the X-41 - has resulted in impressive results today... once the class got off the line after several starting line recalls.

Overall in Class B Aaro Cantell's X-41 Normet from Finland is leading by one point over Mati Sepp's Estonian X-41 Premium, although the two are racing separately and leading respectively in the Blue and Yellow fleets in this class.

Due to a weather forecast of light air tomorrow, race managers are opting to run another inshore rather than offshore race, with the Warning Signal scheduled for 10:00 AM local time.

Massive Win For Nika: Golden Wheels For Aqua
Photo by Ingrid Abery, Click on image for photo gallery.

RC44 Vladimir Prosikhin's Team Nika today scored one of the biggest wins in the one design keelboat class' recent history when she claimed the RC44 Portsmouth Cup by a massive 14 points.

Thanks to Principal Race Officer Peter Reggio and his world famous wind-seeking nose, one race was held today, on an otherwise wind-less Hayling Bay. Team Nika started with a 12-point advantage in the 11 boat fleet, so had all but won the regatta before this. As tactician Ed Baird explained: "The only way we couldn't win was if Team Aqua won and we had a collision and got penalty points."

Following a 'keep out of harm's way' approach', Team Nika started on her own at the committee boat and headed right where Baird said they had spotted a cloud showing potential. "We went for that, got a nice 15° right shift that no one else did." Leading around the top mark, she sailed into decreasing pressure down the run causing the boats behind to close.

Team Nika ultimately ended up finishing second giving her a massive 14-point victory: This year's first two RC44 regattas were won by just two and three points.

Next up is the RC44 Cascais Cup to be held over 21-25 September.

RC44 Portsmouth Cup - Fleet Race Ranking (After ten races)

1. Nika, Vladimir Prosikhin, 37
2. Aqua, Chris Bake, 51
3. Katusha, Vladimir Sokolov & Alexander Novoselov, 52
4. Artemis Racing Youth, Gustaf Lidvall, 57
5. Peninsula Petroleum, John Bassadone, 62
6. Ceeref, Igor Lah, 62
7. Artemis Racing, Torbjorn Tornqvist, 65
8. Bronenosec, Vladimir Liubomirov, 65
9. Aleph, Hugues Lepic, 68
10. Blackwater, A. Zaytsev, A. Savvidis, M. Merzlikin, 72

Hughes and McNay Roll Into 2016 Rio Games With Speed
Click on image to enlarge.

North Sails Whether on the water, the coach boat or in the sail loft, North Sails experts around the world are committed to supporting the most inspiring competition in sailing: the Olympic Games! Decades of Olympic class sail development have made North Sails the sailmaker of choice for many sailors in open classes. With the Rio Games just weeks away, North Sails has caught up with a collection of athletes as they take up final preparations. First up in our series is Dave Hughes, competing with skipper Stu McNay in the US Mens 470.

More at

Fickle Breeze Keeps 420 Teams Waiting On Day 1 At 420 Worlds
Sanremo, Italy: Opening day of racing at the 2016 420 World Championships in Sanremo, Italy did not quite live up to expectations as the breeze failed to kick in.

The Race Committee chanced their luck and sent the 420 Open and 420 Ladies out to the race tracks off Marina degli Aregai, but the zephyrs of breeze failed to convert and any hope of racing was abandoned.

In contrast and exceeding expectations however, is the huge strength of fleets competing. An all-time record has been set at the 2016 420 World Championships of 524 sailors facing each other on the race track.

Fleet splits are:
420 Open - 110 teams from 22 nations
420 Ladies - 84 teams from 21 nations
420 U17 - 68 entries from 18 nations

In an attempt to get racing back on schedule, the schedule for Tuesday 20 July is three races for all fleets, with the first starts scheduled for 1000 hours.

Tour Voile:Four Stages Done, Five More To Go
As the 24 teams hit the road towards next Tour venue in Spain (Roses), time has come to have a close look at the overall leaderboard.

With three Act victories out of four, Team Lorina Limonade - Golfe du Morbihan tops overal rankings with a comfortable 26 point margin over second Credit Mutuel de Bretagne. Quentin Delapierre and Matthieu Salomon not only scored very consistent results, they also took advantage of Nicolas Troussel's poor performance in Baden. And their confidence is now so strong moving to the second half of the event that they seem unbeatable.

Technically, 26 points can be covered before the end of the Tour. But Lorina Limonade did not have a single bad result so far and never even got a black flag at a start of an inshore race, while other teams did. So they might not have won the 2016 Tour de France a la Voile yet, but they could not be on better path to reach their objective.

Next 9 places of the leaderboard are much more disputed, with only 44 points separating Credit Mutuel de Bretagne in second position, from Natixis - Defi YC Saint-Lunaire in 10th.

Current top ten standings:
1. Team Lorina Lemonade - Morbihan, Q Delapierre M Salomon, 398
2. Mutual Credit Britain, Nicolas Troussel, 372
3. Fullsize Veranda, Mourniac Jean Christoph, 355
4. Team Coved, Ducroz Aurelien, 349
5. Young Team France, Follin R-Fischer Guillou, 347
6. Team Lorina Mojito - Morbihan, Robert S R Perron, 337
7. Treasures Of Tahiti, Teva Plichart, 336
8. Installux Aluminium, Charles Hainneville, 336
9. Oman Airports By Oman Sail, Morrison Douillard S T, 334
10. Natixis / Defi Yc St-Lunar, Champanhac Benoit, 328

Mirsky Back On The Campaign Trail In Poland
Torvar Mirsky is one of the stars set to race an M32 catamaran in Poland for the first time when he competes at the Energa Sopot Match Race at the end of this month. The former World No.1 match racer from Australia took a few years out of top-level competition but, after crewing for fellow Perth sailor Steve Thomas on some of the Tour events earlier this year, has chosen the World Tour event in Sopot to be skipper of his own crew.

"I took a few years out, to study and to get into competitive kitesurfing," said Mirsky, who topped the ISAF world rankings back in 2011. "But doing some of the Tour events this season has given me a taste for match racing again. The M32s are a lot of fun, they require accurate, split-second decision-making. And I love the team element of working together with a crew, which I've missed over the past few years."

Chris Rast's experience in the M32 is limited to his participation in the Copenhagen Match Race earlier this season, but the reigning Melges 24 World Champion is back to see how he fares against the match racing specialists. Other former 49er Olympians like Iker Martinez have proven very successful at making the transition to M32 racing, so the Swiss/American sailor who represented the USA at the 2008 Olympics could prove a danger even to the more experienced skippers coming to Sopot. Among them will be another Swiss skipper, Eric Monnin, who has forged a strong reputation for light-airs skills from his experience of sailing on Lake Geneva.

Sopot tends to be hot at this time of year, and is capable of producing any kind of wind from pretty much any wind direction. This is the first time the M32s will have raced in Poland, and the crowds that promenade along Sopot Pier - at 511m, the longest wooden pier in Europe - will almost be able to reach out and touch the boats as they race just metres from the pier.

The practice race takes place on 26 July, with the race programme taking place on 27-30 July.

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

Seahorse Magazine

World news
The last pre-Vendee dance, Cowes awaits this year's rosbif vs froggy shuffle, 'Anarchy' strikes in Auckland, Newport shrugs off those supposed rating dilemmas and skiff champion Dave Witt prepares for the next (rather big) challenge. Dobbs Davis, Ivor Wilkins, Blue Robinson, Patrice Carpentier

Rod Davis
Don't expect to make too many friends when you're in charge of the selection process for your country's Olympic sailing team

World Sailing
Keep looking forwards. Richard Aspland

How fast?
Bruno Zirilli and Rob Weiland debate the battle for supremacy between TP52 and Maxi72

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Transat Quebec Saint-Malo: Strategy Comes Into Play
After grappling with heavy conditions in the Atlantic, the superlight multihulls battling it out in the Transat Quebec Saint-Malo presented by the City of Levis are now sailing into calmer waters as the depression peters out south of the Irish coast.

As the Maxi trimaran Spindrift 2 rounds the obligatory Fastnet Rock, a few miles further south the three front-runners in the Multi50 race are entering what is arguably the most strategic section of the race in the face of a moderate easterly flow that is forecast to back westerly at times as they close in on the English Channel.

The Atlantic has truly been on top form all week long. The times logged by the respective classes will go down in racing history, with the Multi50s covering more than 520 nautical miles some days, and the 40-foot monohulls reaching peaks of over 370 miles a day.

Spindrift 2 will have blasted across the entire Atlantic at more than 30 knots on a single tack. Now just 340 nautical miles from the finish line, the Maxi trimaran could be the first boat to sail in below the ramparts of the walled city of Saint-Malo - as early as the wee hours of Wednesday morning - setting a new record for the race.

The three front-runners in the Multi50 fleet are expected to cross the finish line a few hours later, having made remarkably good time on the ocean leg as well. While he was unable to shake off his two rivals in the last few days of sheer insanity blasting along at over 25 knots - with French Tech Rennes Saint-Malo reaching a peak of more than 33 knots with Yvan Bourgnon at the helm - Lalou Roucayrol (Arkema) has the advantage of a boat that is truly a force to be reckoned with in lighter conditions. Can he manage to hold off both of his rivals at the same time? We won't know for sure until Wednesday morning.

Hamlet Dragon Gold Cup
In six weeks' time, the Danish hamlet of Hornbaek will be welcoming around 75 of the world's best Dragon teams for this year's Gold Cup - one of the world's most prestigious regattas. Perched on the northern coast of the capital island Zealand - or Sealand as some prefer to call it, Hornbaek's hosting of the Hamlet Dragon Gold Cup 2016 is the latest in a string of Dragon championships to be held off the coast of this small but vibrant sailing community.

A strong sailing triumvirate - Hornbaek Boat Club, the Royal Danish Yacht Club (KDY) and Hellerup Sailing Club - will be welcoming all-comers from August 26 to Sept. 2, three years after the North Zealand club was asked to house the 2016 championship.

Initiated back in 1937 by the Clyde Yacht Club Association (CYCA) to unite as many competitors of different nationalities as possible in a friendly atmosphere, the Dragon class Gold Cup has captured the imagination of many of the world's leading sailors.

With just over a month left to the start of this year's race, the 25 land volunteers from Hornbaek and almost as many helpers from KDY and Hellerup Sailing Club on the water, are putting the final touches to what promises to be a great event.

"Some 60 participants are currently registered and I expect around 75 - but the more the merrier and we can cater for as many Dragons as care to take part," says Hornbaek Boat Club's commodore, Julian Isherwood.

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The Last Word
Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow" -- Winston Churchill

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