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

Carpe Diem Maserati
Giovanni Soldini's MOD70 Maserati, crossed the finish line of the 2016 Rolex Middle Sea Race at the Royal Malta Yacht Club to take Multihull Line Honours at 14.00.01 CET on Monday 24th October in an elapsed time of 2 days 01 hours 25 minutes and 01 seconds. In doing so, Maserati has also set a new multihull race record for the Rolex Middle Sea Race.

Maserati had trailed Lloyd Thornburg's MOD70 Phaedo3 for most of the race, but following what appears to be a simple navigation error by Phaedo3, Maserati seized the moment to claim victory.

Maserati Skipper: Giovanni Soldini
"The first part of the race went well more or less. The two of us arrived together. They chose to go in shore and we went a little bit out. They made the right decision and they took an advantage there. We then played the section in the night very well, especially through Messina and we were very close. Then from Messina to Stromboli they did better than us. We stayed too far west."

"I bet that the best passage along the north of Sicily would be far off the coast and I was nearly right. We almost went past them, but then no and we stopped. It was like a piece of elastic, we catch up then they go away."

"A race is never over until you finish. Anything can happen. When I saw that Phaedo had tacked, I thought they had broken something. I wondered if maybe I should call them on the radio to ask if they have some problem and they need something. Luckily I didn't because it took a long time for them to discover their error!"

Damage before the race reduced the potential of Maserati; she had to sail with a replacement non-foiling rudder and daggerboard on the starboard side. Even so, Soldini was pleased with what he saw:

"The different conditions meant we could try different things. I was really impressed with the sail combination and speed just after the start between the breakwater and the first turning mark. I couldn't tell you if we would have been faster over the whole race if we had not damaged the rudder. It is a bet. In some moments for sure. From here to Sicily way faster and also from Stromboli to the end of Sicily way faster too when we were reaching in 20 knots with a flat sea. But who knows."

George David's American Maxi, Rambler 88, crossed the finish line of the 2016 Rolex Middle Sea Race at the Royal Malta Yacht Club to take Monohull Line Honours at 02:18:26 CET on Tuesday 25th October in an elapsed time of 02 days 14 hours 03 minutes 26 seconds.

Rambler 88 Crew: George David, Erle Williams, Brad Jackson, Rodney Ardern, Joca Signorini, Andrew Cape, Silvio Arrivabene, Josh Belsky, Lorenzo Mazza, Will McCarthy, Stu Wilson, Dean Phipps, Nathan Hislop, Mark Newbrook, Joe Fanelli, Jerry Kirby, Scott Beavis, Curtis Blewett, Brian Giorgio, Robbie Naismith

Crossing Oceans With Zero Carbon Emmissions
Some of the entrants in the Vende Globe single handed round the world race have put their toes in the water by experimenting with a hydro generator that is mounted externally like an outboard to minimize the carbon imprint of their round the world race. These units put out a lot of amperage with a small propeller and a low drag bracket but are easily damaged and will they put out enough amperage to satisfy all the electrical needs.

Since the Volvo and Knox Johnson Challenge fleet are one design boats I feel these two fleets should jump in with BOTH feet and install a shaft driven alternator that would produce enough amperage to run all electrical needs. There would be no need to run a generator and carry fuel which would save probably 1,000 pounds. If properly engineered shaft driven alternators were installed in the Volvo and Challenge boats, the round the world race could be done with ZERO carbon imprint.

The publicity generated would hopefully convince boats that cruise off shore to do the same thing, install a shaft driven alternator and cruise with ZERO carbon emissions.

There is nothing new about the idea of generating electricity from a free wheeling prop shaft.

Don Street's full editorial in Seahorse:

Vendee Globe Skippers Tell Why They Chose North Sails
North Sails On November 6th, when 29 skippers set off from Les Sables d'Olonne in the 8th Vendee Globe, 22 of them will carry North sails. Still the only non-stop, singlehanded race around the globe without assistance, the Vendee is hands down the toughest race in world.

Setting off alone requires the utmost confidence in your boat and equipment - all of which the skippers know from the inside out.

Hear the likes of Vincent Riou, Jeremie Beyou, Armel Le Cleac'h and others, explain why they chose North Sails for a race many consider the Everest of the Seas.

WIM Series Event In Korea
The waters just off of Haeundae Beach offered perfect sailing conditions today, as the practice sessions for the 9th edition of the Busan Cup Women's International Match Race were run. Beginning Tuesday, 61 sailors in twelve crews from nine countries will fight for valuable WIM Series points, as well as for a share of the 100 000 USD prize pool

The 9th edition of the Busan Cup Women's International Match Race will begin Tuesday with the round-robin, to be raced on the same waters just outside Haeundae Beach, as was successfully used for the 1988 Olympic regatta

This 4th event on the 2016 WIM Series attracts not only the crews regularly competing on the Series, but also some young and rising stars and a few outstandingly experienced veterans. Among the latter are the only previous double winners of Busan; French Claire Leroy who triumphed in 2010 and 2012, and British Lucy Macgregor who took the title in 2009 and 2014.

The weather forecast for the week looks like it'll be a mixed bag of conditions, with a low-pressure giving a quite unstable weather situation

The Busan Cup Women's International Match Race in Busan, South Korea, will kick off the round-robin racing on Tuesday the 25th of October, with final races, prize giving and closing ceremony on Saturday the 29th of October.

NACRA 17 Class Votes On Full Foiling For Tokyo
On the 19th of October the Nacra 17 class members assembled for an electronic Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM). Three topics debated were

a) an update to the class constitution
b) advertising
c) whether or not class members recommend full foiling for 2020 or not

A presentation covering the proposed changes to equipment, pricing, and procedure was shown to 50 members in attendance over the course of 2 hours. Details of how the boats would be made stronger and more consistent were included. Also shown was three pricing options for a mk 2 Nacra 17 was presented which can be downloaded here

The three options for equipment going forward are:

a) retrofit a mk1 boat to go full foiling for 7,900 euros
b) Buying a new platform for 14,500 euros, retaining the ability to sell the mk1 platform for a next cost of about 7500 euros
c) Buying a new boat for 24,250 euros, an increase of about 2000 euros from the mk1 price

Following the presentation was a discussion with questions and answers from class members and leadership. At the close the meeting, voting was opened to class members. 89 members voted from the total membership of 132, above the 40% threshold required to form a quorum. All of the motions passed, with the advertising and constitution motions receiving 87% support or higher. the major question of whether to recommend to World Sailing whether Nacra 17 should go fully foiling for the 2020 Olympic or not was a closer vote, but ultimately passed 48 votes to 33, for a 59% support level.

As such, the Nacra 17 class has sent a letter to the head of the Equipment Committee of World Sailing with the class recommendation. Class president, Marcus Spillane, will convey this position at the World Sailing Conference next month in Barcelona. Equipment of the updated configuration will become available following confirmation from World Sailing Conference of their position on the matter. Team wishing to get onto the waiting list for mk2 equipment should be in contact with the Nacra Sailing head office.

Fly And Sail Options At The Mount Gay Round Barbados Regatta
Mount Gay Round Barbados Race The Mount Gay Round Barbados Race Series, which runs from 16-24 January and marks the start of the Caribbean race season, is fast becoming a good charter option for race-thirsty, sun-seekers. Those keen to escape the post Christmas northern hemisphere winter chill, could do worse than sign up for a place on one of the many charter yachts competing at this popular Caribbean regatta.

The event organisers - Barbados Cruising Club in association with Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc and Mount Gay - are preparing for the biggest entry seen for some years in 2017, which means there will be high demand for charter boats/places.

As well as the three-day Coastal Series, guests can look forward to the 60nm Mount Gay Round Barbados Race where it is possible for teams to win their skippers' weight in Mount Gay Rum if they break any of the 14 records. For the adventurous type, there's even a final 265nm Ocean Passage Race to Antigua to link up with the Superyacht Challenge.

Bajan hospitality includes the legendary Mount Gay Rum Red Cap party, and a grand prizegiving party, while on lay-day there's a chance to experience a tour/tasting session at the Mount Gay Distillery, and enjoy a specially laid-on exhibition polo match.

Charter options include:

Ocean Phoenix 77ft luxury yacht (Charterworld)

Palpatine, Stimpson 42 (Stormforce Coaching)

Spirit of Juno and First 40 and Farr 65 (Ondeck Antigua)

Conviction, TP52 (Island Yachts)

Event details, and contacts regarding more charter options:

The Best Way To Care For Modern Marine Technical Clothing
Marine technical clothing has come a long way in the last few years and with it, the way to care for it has evolved. We talked to Craig Prest, Creative Director at Henri Lloyd, about the best way to care for your kit.

Mark: There seems to be a number of misconceptions about what to do if your kit seems to be worn, not waterproof any more. How should you actually care for modern off-shore racing gear?

Craig: Yes, there are a lot of misconceptions, and I think it's quite simple. After wearing it racing, the best thing to do is just to spray it down with cold water. Absolutely don't use any washing detergents or solutions because they will just break down the coatings. So just a simple rinse of water will generally improve the coating life span as well.

One of the things that absolutely improves and maintains the quality of the durable water-repellent coatings, as we call them DWRs, is by simply tumble-drying it. The heat reinvigorates the coating, and that will improve that durable coating no end. People don't really know about it, it's not something we talk about a lot, but after a couple of times washing, put it in a tumble dryer for 20 minutes at a low setting, say 40 degrees, and you will help rebuild that coating and it will last much longer. Just check your care label first to see if it allows for the garment to be tumble dried.

The World Sailing Show - October
The Vendee Globe race
Of the 138 sailors that have started the Vendee Globe, only 71 have managed to cross the finishing line. Many have retired more times than they have completed the course. Only one has won the race twice, Michel Desjoyeaux, in 2001 and 2009. Tragically two paid the ultimate price… and were lost at sea. Non-stop, around the world for 24,000 miles, alone and with no outside assistance allowed, offshore racing doesn't get any tougher.

Other features:
- How an American President inspired generations of match racers
- The high tech, high performance TP52s' World Championships
- World Sailing's Andy Hunt outlines the road ahead for Tokyo 2020

Volvo Ocean Race To Use M32 Catamarans For Pro-Am Racing And Guest Sailing
Aston Harald Sports has announced that Volvo Ocean Race will use the M32 catamaran in eight of the stopovers of the 2017-2018 edition of the worlds premiere offshore race. Eight team branded catamarans will make sure to keep the spotlight on high performance sailing in the Race village.

Each Volvo Ocean Race entry, in addition to their Volvo Ocean 65 monohull racing around the globe, will also have an M32 catamaran shipped from port to port as part of their sponsor inventory. The specific aim is to increase the number of sponsor client, city and media guests that get to experience high performance sailing during the stopovers between the ocean legs.

In the fifth of a series of 10 Volvo Ocean Race announcements in two weeks, Race director Phil Lawrence revealed that the M32 boats, which weigh just 510kg and can sail in most weather conditions in stadium mode, will be used in both guest sailing and Pro-Am racing mode during the final days of at least eight of the 11 Host Cities the global race visits.

In 2014-15, the Race saw over 2,400 corporate guests take spots onboard the Volvo Ocean 65s. With the addition of the M32s, that number will rise four-fold to almost 10,000. The Race organisers will provide each team with a branded M32 in their colours, assembled, rigged and ready to race, so as not to add more burden to their already high-pressure, pre-race period.

Finalists Announced For Boats.Com YJA Yachtsman Of The Year and Boats.Com YJA Young Sailor Of The Year
Fareham UK: Olympic Finn Class Gold Medalist Giles Scott, Round the Island Race record setter Brian Thompson, and Clipper Race crewman Gavin Reid, have been shortlisted for the 2016 YJA Yachtsman of the Year Award.

Finalists for the 2016 Young Sailor of the Year Award are 15 year old 2016 Topper world champion Elliott Kuzyk, Tom Darling (18) and Crispin Beaumont (18), Bronze medalists at the 2016 29er World Championships, and powerboat racer Thomas Mantripp (15), who won this year's GP RYA British GT15 and British Sprint Championship titles.

The winners of these premier British achievement awards will be announced at a gala luncheon on Tuesday, January 10, 2017 at Trinity House, London following a vote among members of the Yachting Journalists' Association (YJA).

World Sailing Announces Athletes' Commission
Five sailors have been elected to World Sailing's Athletes' Commission following a vote by sailors' competing at the Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition.

Jo Aleh (NZL), Sofia Bekatorou (GRE), Maayan Davidovich (ISR), Juan Ignacio Maegli (GUA) and Vasiliij Zbogar (SLO) join existing members Sarah Gosling (GBR) as well as Lijia Xu (CHN) and Yann Rocherieux (FRA).

The Athletes' Commission report directly to the World Sailing Board of Directors with the Chair a permanent voting member of the Board. Rocherieux has been elected Chair of the Athletes' Commission for this term with Bekatorou as Vice-Chair. The Commission represent the interests of Olympic sailors, encouraging open communication and feedback.

The incoming members will serve a term of eight years from 2016 to 2024 and include some of the most successful sailors of recent times. -- Daniel Smith - World Sailing

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Lupa of London is a remarkable Reichel Pugh designed Carbon composite cruiser racer with an outstanding Baltic build pedigree and enviable trophy cupboard.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly


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Raceboats Only Ker 46 - NEW BOAT

Ker effected an IRC revolution when his relatively lightweight Ker 40s started cleaning up two years ago. This is the latest evolution of the marque.

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McConaghy Boats

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Raceboats Only 2003 MC46 (refit 2008). 260000 EUR. Located in Italy.

An excellent choice for a family to cruise and to race in the ORC and IRC.

Very seaworthy yacht, high-performance, easily to sail with small crew: the perfect combination between a competitive racer and an elegant cruiser.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly


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The Last Word
Consider again that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. -- Carl Sagan

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