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

Aussies Rule
Photo by Ingrid Abery, Click on image for photo gallery.

Etchells Worlds Day 1 The 2016 Etchells World Championship started in earnest today, with two intensely competitive races in the Central Solent. It took four attempts to get the fleet away for Race One and the U-Flag start produced several casualties, including reigning Etchells World Champions, Skip Dieball, Jon McClean and Jeff Eiber North Cape YC (USA). "Yes, we will be back out fighting tomorrow, we have got our discard out of the way on the first race." commented Jon McClean. Teams from five different nations occupy the top ten places. However two teams from the Royal Brighton Yacht Club, Victoria Australia, finished the day at the top of the leaderboard

Race One was won by Chris Hampton racing with Sam Haines and Mark Andrews Royal Brighton Yacht Club (AUS). The chat in the beer tent afterwards suggested that Hampton's team, sailed extremely well today. Ante Razmilovic racing with Chris Larson and Stuart Flinn, representing the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (ITA), scored a bullet in Race Two.

Day One, top performer was John Bertrand, racing with Paul Blowers and Ben Lamb, representing the Royal Brighton Yacht Club (AUS). After two races, Bertrand leads by three points from Hampton. Steve Benjamin's team, from the Seawanhaka Corinthian Yacht Club (USA), is the smoking gun in third, behind the Australians. Peter Duncan, American Yacht Club (USA), is in fourth on countback from Andy Beadsworth, Warsash SC (GBR). Noel 'Nitro' Drennan, representing the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club is just a point behind in sixth.

Racing at the 2016 Etchells World Championship will continue tomorrow, Tuesday 6th September, with two races scheduled in the Central Solent. The 2016 Etchells World Championship media team will deliver live updates, including GPS Tracking, as well as daily results, news stories, interviews, videos, and pictures.

Provisional Top Ten

1. Triad2, John Bertrand / Paul Blowers / Ben Lamb, AUS, 6.0 points
2. Tango, Chris Hampton / Sam Haines / Mark Andrews, AUS, 9.0
3. Scimitar, Stephen Benjamin / Michael Menninger / Ian Liberty / George Peet, USA, 19.0
4. Raging Rooster, Peter Duncan / Thomas Blackwell / Judson Smith, USA, 23.0
5. Etchells Andy Beadsworth / Grant Simmer / Steve Jarvin, GBR, 23.0
6. Matatu, Noel Drennan / Brian Hammersley / Andrew Mills, SIN, 24.0
7. Powwow, Pedro Andrade / Henry bagnall / Charles Nankin, POR, 27.0
8. Hephaestus (Corinthian), Thomas Brennan / Ian Dobson / Sam Maxfield / Honor Fell, GBR, 27.0
9. Sumo (Corinthian), Martin Webster / Annabel Vose / Peter Nicholas / Chris Smith, AUS, 27.0
10. La Tomenta, Shannon Bush / Brad Boston / Curt Oetking, USA, 28.0

Full provisional results

Opening Day Blown Off At Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup
Big conditions today off Sardinia's magnificent Costa Smeralda sadly proved too big. Initially the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup race committee held competitors ashore to see if the forecast lull would occur. Ultimately at 1430 local time conditions on the course were in fact building rather than dropping, so, reluctantly, Peter Craig and his team from the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, organiser of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup alongside the International Maxi Association, chose to abandon racing on what was supposed to have been the opening day of competition.

From the International Maxi Association base on the Southern Wind 78 Whisper, tied up among the other Maxi Cruiser Racers at the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda dock, Secretary General Andrew McIrvine acknowledged: "Sadly conditions made sailing today extremely difficult. Not only did it make it difficult to set courses, but also the logistics of moving these very large boats in and out of the narrow harbour entrance safely. Plus there is the feeling that we don't want to cause any damage on day one."

As a result of this, it is highly likely that there will now be no layday, originally scheduled for Thursday.

Full entry list

Two To Watch
Two J Class yachts have made the pilgrimage to Sardinia for the annual Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup. Lionheart won the honours in 2014 when four boats raced as a class at the event whilst Velsheda, which arrives in Porto Cervo fresh from a six month long refit at Pendennis in Falmouth won a three cornered battle in 2013 against Rainbow and Ranger.

Lionheart - hull length 43m - and Velsheda - hull length 39.25m - compete under the ORCSy rating system in the ten strong SuperMaxi class. Their fleet contains yachts such as the new Swan 115 Highland Fling, the 49.6m Dubois designed Ohana and the Farr designed 34.99m Sojana. The Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup has drawn a record entry of 52 boats.

Biggest J Class prize at stake this week is the Owner/Driver Corinthian King's Cup, which was won last June by Lionheart in Falmouth. The regatta will also be dual scored under JCA handicap this week and the top J Class team will lift the coveted award.

Lionheart have had three good days of training leading into Monday's first racing day, an essential practice when, as tactician Bouwe Bekking notes, there are 38 people on board the race boat.

"We'd like to win a watch here, for sure. I think we are in good shape now and our owner is raring to go." Says Velsheda's tactician Tom Dodson. "We love being here and we love racing together. And we always go out to win. We were talking about next year and really I don't think for us there is any drive to peak at Bermuda or Newport, we always just take each regatta as it comes, we always prepare as best we can and we always go out to win. I don't think there is anything reflected in our spending or our effort which is geared particularly to winning Bermuda. That's not our approach. We want to win everything."

50 Years and Celebrating Caribbean Style
Antigua Sailing Week The 50th Antigua Sailing Week (ASW) will take place from April 29 to May 5, 2017 with an incredible celebration of 50 years of yacht racing in Antigua. New for the 50th will be a 'fun class' for less serious racers who still want to participate and have some fun, as well as new race marks and course options. A Lord Nelson's Trophy Winners' Ball is being planned to add spice to an already a fantastic week.

ASW consists of five days of challenging racing (plus two optional races) on the best race track in the world. The deep blue Caribbean Sea and beautiful trade winds off Antigua's south coast provide one of the best racing areas anywhere. Post-ASW shipping to the UK, Europe, Bermuda and the US east coast US will get you to your next event on time, or stay around and participate in the new Antigua to Bermuda Race starting on May 12, 2017.

Daily post-race prize-giving's, cold beers and English Harbour 5 Year Old Rum provide the perfect wind down before Caribbean hospitality takes on its own life when islanders, visitors and sailors mix together each evening in an incredible atmosphere. Lay Day is an idyllic Caribbean beach day with laid back reggae, cold beers, hot sun and hotter girls (and guys of course), making for a perfect day. The now legendary Final Awards Party takes place in historic Nelson's Dockyard with the best awards presentation in the Caribbean bringing the week to a crescendo.

To enter and for more information visit

Paul Henderson Puts His Hat In The Ring
Guest editorial from The Pope:

The overview position that I support is that World Sailing is a membership organisation and not a company! Staff responds to the needs and the wishes of the members (the sailors). Not the other way around!

Please understand that I am not against any new concept sport. What I am against is that a new monopoly concept; Kite-Surfing uses Sailing as their avenue to Olympic Status which negatively impacts our sport. Kite-Surfing is using Sailing to accomplish their Olympic goals. Convertible Kite-Surfing or Formula Kites or other names are confusing so I will use Kite-Surfing.

About 6 years ago Kite-Surfing appeared at ISAF and naively were taken in as a new extreme sport. Then ISAF Council was told that they would try and become Olympic but only if the IOC would give to Sailing two additional Medal Events and therefore would have no impact on existing events. All appeared to be acceptable to the usually forthright ISAF Council [/sarcasm -ed].

ISAF then went through a revolving door of what are now called CEO's with 3 in less than a year. New CEO Mr. Andy Hunt returned from an IOC meeting stating that unless Sailing accepted Kite-Surfing with their "riders" not sailors all hell would break loose. Sailing would have its events dramatically cut back or even dropped by the IOC. It was stated that the IOC in their Agenda 2020 were going from a sport focus to an event focus.

The next move was that "panic" set in and that Kite-Surfing must be made an event of Sailing in TOKYO2020 and that immediately the now World Sailing policies must be altered negating the previous World Sailing commitment that their would be no changes in events for 2020 after the unfortunate deletion of keelboats which had ripple effect of Sailing being dropped from the Paralympics. This also resulted in two new monopoly pieces of equipment being inserted for RIO2016 which has caused great problems.

There was then a quickly conceived E-Mail vote to change the policy so that Kite-Surfing could use 2 of the 10 now Sailing events and not be only for extra events if awarded by the IOC. The World Sailing staff initiated a phone campaign to Council to get the required vote to ensure this change passed. The rumours spread fast that the Finn would be dropped and the 470 made Mixed so that two slots opened up for Kite-Surfing. It should be noted that the Finn and 470 are the only 2 classes which are now not commercial monopolies.

There was a great reaction from several of the other International Olympic Sports to the IOC focus on events not the sports. The IOC Executive Board issued a clarification of their Agenda 2020 stating that the IOC new direction would not impact the existing 25 Olympic core sports of which Sailing is one. The threat that Sailing is on the way out is not true.

The IOC has totally refuted the World Sailing panic.

What the IOC has done is to increase the number events to 310 from 301 and to state that the number of athletes will be 10,500. They have also added 5 new sports to the existing 28, Baseball/Softball (Now 1 Federation), Karate, Skate Boarding, Sports Climbing, and Surfing. Another issue is the IOC stating they want "Gender Equality". Baseball will have 25 athletes for the Men's event of Baseball and 15 athletes for the Women's Event of Softball. The observation here is that the IOC makes general statements but all are adaptable to the specific needs of the sports which is why "Gender Equity" is more appropriate.

Conclusion: Kite-Surfing with their "riders" and off-the-beach sport fits into the new IOC confirmed sport of "Surfing".

They can develop all their "convertible concepts" free from the constraints of World Sailing which have evolved over decades.

"Surfing" is the International Sport Federation Kite-surfing must use to get their desire to be Olympic and not totally disrupt Sailing. I trust World Sailing will go to the IOC and ask that this be the direction followed by Kite-Surfing as everyone wins but more importantly is that Sailing is not totally disrupted again as happened with the keelboat issue.


Over the last several months I have asked for clarification and answers to several questions posed to the World Sailing staff and been told that I am just a sailor and have no position at World Sailing. The result of this staff position is that I will put forward my name again as President in hopes that I might finally get some answers.

The next few months are crucial to the future of Sailing and that at least till November I will have a podium to put forward my concerns.

Paul Henderson
A Concerned Sailor

Beauty And The Beast
Seahorse Magazine Sleek, powerful, radically new... With her teak decks and seductive interior, you just wonder what she is all about - until sails are set and she whisks away, in the lightest of puffs. At sea with Nautor's ClubSwan 50

July in Finland is off-season. Companies closed, families gone to their summer houses. So it is a somewhat eerie sight to come to Nautor, this hallmark of a boatbuilder, with a brand new yacht moored in front of the Pietarsaari plant, workers everywhere when in fact there should be no one and nothing around.

Normally the Finnish adhere to national holidays like they were a religious thing. They care to spend time with their relatives and friends. Normally at Nautor they assemble boats inside, not on the dock. And normally, if and when they do invite you to a sea trial they will have checked and fixed every little detail to a degree rarely seen.

This year, however, is anything but. It marks their 50th anniversary – a date few serial production yards have passed. Nautor did not just weather this past half-century. They moulded it, earning a near-mythical reputation early on when pioneering GRP boatbuilding. Unforgotten Ramon Carlin's win in the first Whitbread Round the World Race 1973/74 on his Swan 65 Sayula.

Now at 50 and matured in many ways, Nautor are not going to sit still. Quite the contrary. With the ClubSwan 50 they present a yacht pivotal to their near future. 'It's not just a new model,' says marketing director Vanni Galgani. 'It's a statement.'

Full article in Seahorse:

Marinepool Melges 24 European Championship
Hyeres, France: As predicted by the weather forecasts, a Mistral was blowing strongly at the start of Melges 24 European Championship, hosted by COYCH and the International Melges 24 Class Association with the support of Marinepool.

Three races took place on the beautiful bay of Hyeres, in a race course that was set close to Porquerolles, in such way that it was also possible to follow the races from the Hyeres shoreline.

Just two of the crews that occupy the first ten positions of the ranking, managed to win a race. We are talking about the Estonian boat Lenny, skippered by Tonu Toniste - the Corinthian reigning European and World Champion, who won the first race; and the Italian Marrakech Express with former Italian Olympian Matteo Ivaldi on board - one of the few sailors of the class who himself takes care both of the helm and of the tactical choices, winning race number three. Matteo Ramian, the trimmer from Marrakech Express who was fifth at the end of day one, just a few points behind the Hungarian FGF Sailing Team, declared it was a great day but with difficult conditions, particularly tricky when crews reached the downwind gate.

All the crews are looking forward to tomorrow's races, when the weather forecast is lighter and less shifty wind, coming from the East. The first preparatory signal will be given at 10 am. The race committee intends to run three more races.

Top five after three races:

1. Gill Race Team, Geoff Carveth / Miles Quinton / Craig Burlton / Catherine Alton / Adam Brushett, GBR, 10 points
2. Bombarda, Andrea Pozzi / Guilio Desiderato / Stefano Ciampalini / Nicolas Del Ferro / Carlo Zermini, ITA, 15
3. EFG, Christopher Rast / Patrick Zaugg / Nikolay Kornev / Danielle Rast / Matteo Ferraglia, SUI, 15
4. FGF Sailing Team, Robert Bakoczy / Domonkos Rozsnyay / Levente Takacsy / Kristof Takacsky / Bence Buza, HUN, 19
5. Marrakech Express, Matteo Ivaldi / Angelo Di Terlizzi / Maco Giannini / Pietro Canepa / Mateo Ramian, ITA, 22

Full results

Featured Brokerage
Raceboats Only 1996 Eric Goetz Maxi 80. 385,000 EUR. Located in Kiel, Germany

One of the original Iconic Maxi yachts is now available. She was originally built as the world famous 'Boomerang' under an IMS rating rule. Then converted to life in the Maxi fleet where she achieved first class honours for many years on the circuit.

Still maintained to the highest of quality, this is a really attractive all round proposition and offers a truly huge amount of bang for your buck!!

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Sam Pearson - Ancasta Port Hamble


Raceboats Only 1997 Maxi 79; Racer - OURDREAM. 550,000 EUR. Located in Ancona, Italy

Maxi 79 Racer OURDREAM is a beautifully refitted maxi racing yacht that is easily sailed and perfect corporate or fun platform for both inshore and offshore regattas. Recent refit to a high standard means low running costs.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Ben Cooper
+44 (0) 1590 679222


Raceboats Only 2010 Davidson 70. 895,000 USD. Located in Italy

PENDRAGON is our latest central listing,that we have been asked to market and sell due to her current owner realizing that a larger boat would suit his needs better. She is a Franklin built, Lauri Davidson designed mini maxi that is presently located in Italy. She is an imaculate yacht from her three spreader Southern spar rig down to her lifting keel. No expense was spared to make her the fastest and prettiest girl at the prom.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Please contact William Jenkins at 410-267-9419

See the collection at

The Last Word
Looking back on things, the view always improves. -- Pogo

Editorial and letter submissions to

Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see

Search the Archives

Phoca Gallery Search
Search - Categories
Search - Contacts
Search - Content
Search - News Feeds
Search - Web Links

Our Partners

Seahorse Magazine

Wight Vodka


Ocean Safety

Yacht Club Monaco

St Thomas YC

Grenada Sailing Week

Antigua Sailing Week