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

Difficult Day In Bay Puts Brits To Test
It was a super tough day on Guanabara Bay as a two-hour postponement and very light, patchy breeze from an unusual Northerly direction played havoc with the Paralympic regatta schedule today (Tuesday 13 September).

The race committee initially appeared keen to try to wait for the sea breeze to come in, but with the thermometer hitting the low 30s and the sea breeze staying away, the call was made to try to get some racing in for all three classes.

The Sonars and SKUDs both got one more race under their belts, bringing their series total to three, with the British boats enduring mixed fortunes. But the 2.4mRs saw their race attempt abandoned after the combination of light wind and strong tide meant they exceeded the 25 minute time limit to reach the top mark.

All three classes will now try to get three races in tomorrow, racing from the earlier time of 4pm.

Alexandra Rickham and Niki Birrell moved into the SKUD18 podium positions courtesy of their fourth place on the Escola Naval today. Now the five-time World Champion Brits want to just keep eking out the points to keep them in the hunt.

The Sonar team of John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Steve Thomas were left ruing a day to forget as a 14th place from their sole race put them in 12th overall.

Meanwhile in the 2.4mR, defending champion and overnight leader, Helena Lucas, admitted to being relieved that their race was canned as she was struggling to move through the pack in a difficult upwind leg. Now she is hoping for some more stable conditions to up her medal charge back on the bay tomorrow.

Top three:

1. Helena Lucas, GBR, 3
2. Heiko Kroeger, GER, 5
3. Dee Smith, USA, 8

1. Daniel Fitzgibbon / Liesl Tesch, AUS, 4
2. John McRoberts / Jackie Gay, CAN, 9
3. Alexandra Rickham / Niki Birrell, GBR, 11

1. Colin Harrison / Russell Boaden / Jonathan Harris, AUS, 8
2. Paul Tingley / Logan Campbell / Scott Lutes, CAN, 11
3. Vasilis Christoforou / Anargyros Notaroglou / Thodoris Alexas, GRE, 12

Team GBR:

Full results:

Season Eight For The GJW Direct Sailjuice Winter Series
Entry opens in a few weeks for the GJW Direct SailJuice Winter Series, which kicks off with the Fernhurst Books Draycote Dash on the weekend of 19/20 November 2016. More details will be announced at the launch of this season's Series at the Southampton Boat Show this Friday, 16 September. Organisers Andy Rice ( and Simon Lovesey ( will be there at 1030am at the GJW Direct Insurance stand.

Now widely recognised as the definitive dinghy winter championship for the UK, previous winners of the GJW Direct SailJuice Winter Series include multiple national and world champion Nick Craig who won two seasons with various crews in his Merlin Rocket, 2015 Fireball World Champion Tom Gillard who won the 2012/13 season, and GP14 World Champions Ian Dobson and Andy Tunnicliffe who are the current winter champions after a storming performance in the strong breeze of last winter.

The following regattas constitute the GJW Direct SailJuice Winter Series 2016/2017:

Draycote Dash, Draycote Water Sailing Club
Saturday 19 & Sunday 20 November 2016

Datchet Flyer, Datchet Water Sailing Club
Saturday 10 & Sunday 11 December 2016

Brass Monkey, Yorkshire Dales Sailing Club
Tuesday 27 December 2016

Grafham Grand Prix, Grafham Water Sailing Club
Monday 2 January 2017

Bloody Mary, Queen Mary Sailing Club
Saturday 14 January 2017

John Merricks Tiger Trophy, Rutland Sailing Club
Saturday 4 & Sunday 5 February 2017

Oxford Blue, Oxford Sailing Club
Saturday 18 February 2017

Assistant Sailing Officer: Applications Accepted
Royal Thames Based at its Knightsbridge Clubhouse and reporting to the Chief Sailing Officer, this is an evolving role that includes managing or supporting numerous sailing and racing events throughout the year at Queen Mary Sailing Club in West London or in Cowes. Responsibilities will include the planning and administration that ensures the events are run efficiently, including preparing documentation, briefing of competitors and liaison with all stakeholders.

The sailing office manages a fleet of J/70s, J/80s, RIBs and a committee boat and the Assistant Sailing Officer will be expected to take an active role in the management of the fleet.

The new Assistant Sailing Officer will have a thorough understanding of sailing and racing, excellent communication and administrative skills and be proficient in MS Office applications.

Remuneration will be c£35,000 plus other benefits. The role will involve significant weekend work for which time off in lieu will be given.

Applications by letter, covering a CV, should be made to: The Chief Sailing Officer, Royal Thames Yacht Club, 60 Knightsbridge, London SW1X 7LF or email

Have You Got What It Takes To Go Back To Basics?
Whether you sail a one man Laser or a 90 foot catamaran, the chances are you'll be benefiting from modern technology, from glass reinforced plastic hulls to the latest carbon fibre sails. Strip this tech away however and how would you fare with only your sailing skills and the most rudimentary of boats?

The Adventurists are offering sailors the chance to answer this question for themselves this coming January in one of the less traditional races on the sailing calendar.

The Ngalawa Cup launched last year and, running bi-annually, races for over 300km off the coast of Tanzania, snaking around the Zanzibar Archipelago. This January sees the fourth race set sail. The race, which involves reaching a series of regular check points on various beaches and islands, looks to test its competitors' sailing and endurance skills by stripping things back to basics through the use of Ngalawas.

Ngalawas are traditional fishing boats whose hulls are carved by hand from mango trees with outriggers lashed on. With a double outrigger, which acts as a hydrofoil for stability, and a triangular lateen sail, the boats can sail at speed remarkably close to the wind.

The next race is due to set sail on the 30th Dec this year (starting on Zanzibar Island and finishes in Kilwa) and is hoping to attract 25 teams from around the world. An 'average' team should be looking to complete the race in 9 days, but the gauntlet was thrown down by July's race winners who managed to do it in a new record of three and a half days.

Barts Bash September 17th-18th 2016
Bart's Bash, now in its third year, is a key fundraising platform for the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation and everything you do to help us spread the word is hugely appreciated.

This year Bart's Bash (the timing couldn't be better with the Paralympic sailing ending on 17th Sept!) is raising awareness and funds to support disabled sailing globally.

With the decision being made to remove sailing from the Paralympics, the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation have pledged to use the funds raised through Bart's Bash 2016 to help promote and develop disabled sailing globally.

The Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation (ASSF) was founded in memory of, and inspired by, Olympic Gold medallist sailor Andrew 'Bart' Simpson. The Founding trustees are Sir Ben Ainslie, Iain Percy OBE and Andrew's wife Leah.

The ASSF honours the life and legacy of a sailor who was passionate about encouraging and helping others fulfil their aims. Its simple objective it to "inspire the next generation" by using sailing to improve the lives of young people across the world.

The ASSF is providing the challenges of a sailing environment to promote health and wellbeing, and to develop personal skills that will improve a young person's ability to succeed in life and work. It recognises sailing as a sport and as a recreation that is not always accessible to all owing to lack of finance, a physical or learning disability, mental health or social barriers. The Foundation helps to break down those barriers by working with sailing providers to offer financial and practical support.

The New Testament
Seahorse Magazine Our sport of sailboat racing is complicated. In fact, there may not be a sport as detailed, nuanced and, dare it be said, perplexing. The sheer difficulty of moving up the learning curve in sailboat racing surely has to be one of the reasons why our sport seems reluctant to grow.

For those who sail below the professional crewed level, a short time on a fully crewed boat, whether it be an Etchells or a Maxi 72, will drive home this point. To steal a line from a golfing ad, 'these guys are good'. Clearly, the skills of these pros result from years of experience. It is their job. So what is the amateur sailor to do?

The same question would be asked of a rookie intending to climb Everest, or of someone about to train for their first marathon. The answer in the case of all three examples is to learn and understand the foundations of the sport.

One of those foundations is the sail, the engine of the sailboat. Tom Whidden, CEO of North Technology Group, with 40+ years' racing at the highest level of the sport, and Michael Levitt, co-author and author of 13 other books focusing on our marine world, have expanded on this key foundation of racing and just plain sailing in their The Art and Science of Sails Revised Edition.

For those sufficiently old enough to remember, it was in 1990 that Tom and Michael published the first edition of The Art and Science of Sails. Since so much of sail technology has changed since then, Tom knew that a new edition was necessary. But, as work commenced, it quickly became clear that this book could not simply be just a revision. In essence, it's a new take on the complex subject of sails.

Full story in the October issue of Seahorse:

Industry News
Sparkman & Stephens (S&S), the naval architecture and brokerage firm founded by Olin Stephens and Drake Sparkman in 1929, has been acquired by a group of private investors led by Brooke Parish and John Reuter.

S&S says it wants to implement expansion strategies in its design and brokerage businesses including looking to the powerboat market and needed growth capital.

Mr Reuter, who has been named CEO added: "S&S's history has been characterized by early adoption of new technology, materials, and engineering techniques for almost a century. "We are enthusiastic about continuing to build on that foundation."

S&S's chief designer, Brendan Abbott, will continue to lead the design studio in Newport, Rhode Island.


Edson International

Edson International is pleased to announce that Adam Cove has been promoted to the role of Chief Executive Officer. Adam had previously served as Edson's Vice President of Engineering, Technology and Marketing.

"Adam has achieved success at every position of the company that he has served in, and more importantly, he has earned the respect of his associates, as well as Edson's customers and vendors," reports Will Keene, who now will lead Edson's customer-service department, while continuing in his role as Chairman.

Keene, who started at Edson in 1979 and had served as President since 1989, stated that, "I'm not going away; I am merely getting out of the way to allow Adam to shape Edson's vision and strategy, while I work on further strengthening two key foundations of Edson's business: top-tier customer service and solid industry relationships."


New England Boatworks

New England Boatworks Inc. (NEB), a custom boat builder and full service marina, has added Philip (PJ) Shaffer to our management team. PJ joins NEB as a project manager with a focus on increasing efficiency and productivity through process improvement.

In this return to the marine industry, PJ brings with him a wealth of knowledge in both engineering and manufacturing optimization. He joins us most recently from Focal Upright Furniture where he was brought on to optimize the operations department. Prior to that he held engineering and management positions at Hall Spars and Harken, Inc.

PJ is an avid sailor with experience on the US Sailing Team in the Tornado Class in addition to top-three finishes at multiple National and World Championship events in various classes.


Kwese Sports, Econet Media's premium sports content platform has secured yet another impressive exclusive broadcast deal for the continent. This agreement with the America's Cup Event Authority, gives the African broadcaster exclusive multiplatform rights to broadcast live America's Cup programming and highlights across 20 African countries.

The agreement, which is effective immediately, is for the 2016/17 season. Viewers can tune-in to Kwese Free Sports in countries where the free-to-air channel is available.

Live and highlights programming from all remaining events of the 35th America's Cup, through to the final races in Bermuda in June 2017 will be featured on Kwese Free Sports with delayed coverage available on the Kwese app.

Viewers can access additional information on programming and schedules by visiting


The finale of next week's 52 World Championship, the fourth event of the 2016 52 SUPER SERIES will be streamed live from the race courses set off Mahon, Menorca.

Germany-based RealTV, who have been responsible for all video production of the 52 SUPER SERIES since 2013, will deliver the live streaming from the race course, supported by live pre- and post-racing analysis from the 52 SUPER SERIES studio. The audience in Cascais was phenomenal, amassing nearly one million views in total.

Racing will be broadcast live on Friday 16th, Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th starting from fifteen minutes before the first scheduled start each day. The live action stream will be complemented by real time 3-D tracking by 52 SUPER SERIES' long time supported Virtual Eye.


Fernhust Books

Press day at Southampton Boat Show will see the launch of two new racing books: 2.50pm on Friday 16th September on the Kelvin Hughes stand (J077).

The books are part of Sail to Win, a ground-breaking series of practical racing guides which take a fresh look at the complex subject of racing: leading books that give sailors practical and experiential information, tips and advice in a concise and highly illustrated format. Sail to Win supports the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation and representatives of ASSF are thrilled to be attending the launch.

Wind Strategy by David Houghton & Fiona Campbell

Tuning To Win by Ian Pinnell

are published by Fernhurst Books.

Published as paperbacks and eBooks on 13th September 2016 by Fernhurst Books as part of their Sail to Win series, Wind Strategy and Tuning to Win will be available to buy from all good bookshops, websites and direct from

They will be available from the Kelvin Hughes stand (J077) at the Southampton Boat Show.

Letters To The Editor -
Letters are limited to 350 words. No personal attacks are permitted. We do require your name but your email address will not be published without your permission.

* From David Munge:


I noticed with interest that the IOC has intervened in the selection of boats for the 2020 Olympics.

The description of the Finn as the men's heavy weight dinghy is of course highly discriminating. There are currently no Olympic boats that allow helms of much over 100 KGs to compete on equal terms, and to call 95/100 KGs heavyweight is blatantly nonsense.

In the West, a very large proportion of the population weigh over the 100 mark, and the Asian populations are growing in size very quickly. Note Japan in the Rugby World Cup.

Here is a photo published in this month's Seahorse (click on image to enlarge), showing Sir Ben amongst the crop of young British Finn sailors, who will be condemned to the silly programme of constant diet to get down to an artificial weight limit. The world is changing.

So IOC speak up, cut out further discrimination in sailing. You have given women the chance, now it's the turn of the larger (lager) man.

Quite what a dinghy or multi-hull built for a minimum of a 110KG helmsman would look like, I'll leave to the designers.

Featured Brokerage
Raceboats Only 1989 Imoca Open 60. 220,000 EUR. Located in West France.

Ex ROXY has competed in all Vendee Globe races but the last two and she used to hold the East to West single handed around the world record for several years. She was completely upgraded in 1998 under the supervision of the designer Marc Lombard. This included the canting keel and many other improvements. She was completely overhauled for the 2004/2005 Vendee Globe. Many successful and famous sailors have sailed on board : Philippe Poupon, Bertrand de Broc, Philippe Monnet, Simone Bianchetti, Mich Birch, Anne Lyardet and Samantha Davies.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

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Raceboats Only 1997 Imoca Open 60 Grey Power (ex-Fila). 190000 EUR. Located in the United Kingdom.

Winner - Atlantic Alone 1998 (Giovanni Soldini)
Winner - Around Alone 1999 (Giovanni Soldini)
4th - Transat Anglaise 2000 (Giovanni Soldini)
6th - Transat Jacques Vabre 2001 (Bruno Laurent)
5th - Route du Rhum 2002 (Antoine Koch)
8th - Transat Jacques Vabre 2003 (Antoine Koch)
3rd - Velux Race Around Alone 2006 (Sir Robin Knox-Johnston)
3rd - Route du Rhum 2014 (Sir Robin Knox-Johnston)

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

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email :
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Raceboats Only MC60 - NEW BOAT

It’s surprising how much bigger the new MC60 looks than its 50ft sibling. But all of these very modern-looking new Ker designs feature plentiful accommodation along with a balance of modest displacement and rig size to deliver sparkling pace

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McConaghy Boats

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The Last Word
A person without a sense of humor is like a wagon without springs. It's jolted by every pebble on the road. -- Henry Ward Beecher

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