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Pewaukee Yacht Club Wins 2016 Wight Vodka Best Yachting Bar
Click on image for photo gallery.

Best Yachting Bar "Wow...was this a different Wight Vodka Favourite Yachting Bar competition," commented Dan Hiza, founder of Wight Vodka. "We had some of the world's best yacht clubs and sailing bars in the mix this year, from the Royal Bermuda to the Bitter End, Royal Hong Kong to the Happy Island Bar in the Grenadines, but in the end, the Pewaukee Yacht Club in Pewaukee Wisconsin, USA, has come across the line in first place!"

So, some of you may be wondering where the Pewaukee Yacht Club is, aren't you?

Well, let the crew of Wight Vodka be the first, or the 70,001st to tell you that this is the venerable home of sailing, yacht racing and all things winches, as the Pewaukee Yacht Club is located in the heart of Wisconsin's lake country, and indeed, the home of Harken.

"The voting this year was absolutely full-on," said Dan. "With over 130,000 votes cast over the last month, Pewaukee narrowly edged out the Rochester Yacht Club in up-state New York, with the Windward Mark at the awesome Bitter End Yacht Club placing a 3rd place podium finish."

The top bars of the 2016 competition placed in the following order:

1. Pewaukee Yacht Club, USA
2. Rochester Yacht Club, USA
3. Windward Mark at Bitter End YC, BVI
4. Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club, Bermuda
5. Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, Bermuda
6. Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, Hong Kong
7. Sloop Tavern, Ballard, USA
8. Gladstone's Long Beach, USA
9. Happy Island Bar, Union Island, St. Vincent & Grenadines
10. Roger's Beach Bar, Hog Island, Grenada

"As a Green Bay Packers fan, (and (sorry), a New England Patriots fan too), I do love Wisconsin's beautiful lakes, forests, cheese and Aaron Rodgers' quarter back rating" continued Dan, "but if you ever find yourself in Beach Bay on the southern coast of Pewaukee Bay in the heart of Wisconsin, let's meet up for a Wight Vodka cocktail at 2016's favourite yachting bar, the Pewaukee Yacht Club!"

Here's to the members and followers of Pewaukee YC! You're well deserved to be up there with the best of the best.

* Editor: Pewaukee is a Mecca on the sailing map. Both Harken and Melges have their global headquarters there - and I know they are very aware they were in the hunt and all got behind the club voting.

The photo at right and in the gallery... what appears to be what your humble narrator believes to be a sadly overlooked essential for a yachtie bar... a Go-Go dancer cage (for both men and women, of course).

From one of the PYC's poobahs:

"Yeah, of course it wasn't intended to be that but sailors have a way of turning any innocuous object into something to party with. Clearly this was a pretty good party."

And from a famed (but unnnamed here) PYC member:

PYC is famous for "The Bar Walk" which is a required activity for whatever competitor is in last place after day two of three during the annual E Scow Blue Chip Championship regatta always held in September. This is the event where we bring in a mystery guest to compete - with the likes of Spithill, Connor, Cayard, Holmberg, Perry, Ullman, Jobson, Isler, Mckee, Gulari, Campbell, Coutts, etc. having competed in the past.

This form of punishment and public ridicule is a time-honored tradition that always has these champion competitors a bit more on edge in racing on day two. With the notoriety of international exposure of a global yachting media partner like Seahorse, I'm certain sphincters will be a little tighter on the start line! Last year, during the Blue Chip's 50th's we had Terry Neilsen of Finn and Laser sailing fame up there in boxers and a necktie. He ended up sporting that outfit for the rest of the evening in pure Finn style class.

And finally... something to look forward to this summer when some BIG Harken parties happen there... another unnamed Harken executive has promised a free rounds of drinks to everyone at the club party. Put on Peter Harken's tab!

Congratulations to the Pewaukee Yacht Club!

Raise a toast with some Wight Vodka:

World Sailing Headquarters To Relocate To London
World Sailing's headquarters will relocate from Southampton to central London, UK in late summer 2017.

The selection of London as the new home for the International Federation comes after an extensive evaluation process of possible locations undertaken since the election of a new President and Board of Directors in November 2016.

The criteria for the evaluation included:
- International city
- Connectivity / ease of access for World Sailing members and stakeholders
- Ability to retain existing staff
- International diversity with a high quality, multilingual employment base

World Sailing evaluated Southampton, Geneva, Lausanne, London, Winchester, Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia.

Southampton, London, Barcelona and Winchester were shortlisted by World Sailing's Board of Directors in December 2016 before today's announcement of London.

An office location in central London is to be identified with a target move date of late summer 2017.

World Sailing has been based in Southampton for the past 20-years but the organisations roots, and its predecessors, the IYRU and ISAF, had been based in London since its formation in 1907. -- Daniel Smith

MAPFRE Back For Another Volvo Ocean Race Challenge In 2017-18
Alicante, Spain: MAPFRE will be back on the start line for the Volvo Ocean Race in 2017-18, the Spanish team announced on Tuesday.

MAPFRE, backed by the Madrid-based global insurance company, are the third confirmed entry for sailing's toughest team event, which starts from Alicante on Sunday, 22 October and will take the teams on a 45,000-nautical mile route around the world. Dongfeng Race Team and team AkzoNobel announced their campaigns last year.

In the last edition in 2014-15, MAPFRE won the leg into Auckland, New Zealand and grabbed three more podium finishes. Their return is testament to the success of the project both on the sporting and commercial side.

Spain's Pedro Campos will again oversee the MAPFRE project, with announcements on the skipper and crew to come in the near future.

Spanish boats have competed in eight of the previous 12 editions of the Volvo Ocean Race - formerly the Whitbread Round the World Race - but the country is still looking for a first win.

Spanish sailor Campos has an unbroken history with the race dating back to the movistar campaign in 2005-06.

Seahorse Sailor Of The Month
Last month's winner:

Rob Greenhalgh (GBR)
December 2016, just a Sydney Hobart win and a few thousand dollars for topping the fleet at the Bermuda Mothfest. Diverse but a bit average... 'I'd call that a good month' - Brian Thompson; 'Mighty' - Adam May; 'He wins in Foxers too' - Alistair Skinner; 'He just cannot stop winning... has any modern sailor won in so many very different classes...worth checking?' - Timo Malinen; 'No wonder he's always very well employed!!!' - Holger Lehning. It needs adding that Amac ran Rob very close in this month's vote.

This month's nominees:


Laura Weyler (USA)
'This is very exciting, but I do have an outstanding crew.' Fair enough, but that doesn't disguise the fact that the J/88 Hijinks is still Laura Weyler's first boat and that she took Boat of the Day at least once during Key West Race Week and went on to win her class overall with a scorecard that even Jimmy Spithill would probably be quite proud of... 1,2,1,1,1,1,6,3,3. Sailing needs to attract many more Laura Weylers - so get onto it, people


Thomas Coville (FRA)
Who can forget the call back to routeur Jean-Luc Nelias, that Coville was hitting 45kt (solo) and really would like to slow Sodebo down. In a spectacular month for French offshore sailing it's hard to pick a winner but what Coville achieved - and after 10 years of trying - will be talked about for years to come. He sailed singlehanded around the world in barely more than half the time taken by the fully crewed winner of the first Trophy Jules Verne...


Seahorse Sailor of the Month is sponsored by Henri Lloyd, Harken McLube & Dubarry. Who needs silverware, our prizes are usable!

Cast your vote, submit comments, even suggest a candidate for next month at

To subscribe to Seahorse Digital £30 for one year with discount promo code SB2 click

Industry News
Ullman Sails is proud to announce that Bruce Hollis has been named Director of Design at Ullman Sails International, Inc., the licensing company of the Ullman Sails group. Bruce steps into this role with a distinguished design resume of over four decades in sailmaking and design with programs ranging from 18 Footers to the America's Cup.


Henri Lloyd is delighted to announce their three year partnership with the FAST40+ Class.

As the Official Technical Clothing Partner to the FAST40+ Class, Henri Lloyd will be working alongside the class organisers and owners to provide bespoke crew kit packages on Henri Lloyd's latest inshore race apparel. In addition, all FAST40+Class crew will also benefit from the Henri Lloyd - FAST40+Class Privilege Club.

As part of the partnership, Henri Lloyd will be bestowing a perpetual trophy for the 2017 FAST40+ Race Circuit. Henri Lloyd will also be working with the FAST40+ Class on a number of other projects over the next two years.

Henri Lloyd will be working with the FAST40+ Class during the 2017 FAST40+ Circuit, including Cowes Week and the One Ton Cup.


The New York Boat Show might not be as large as it was during its heyday, but the crowds were steady and buyers were plentiful as the oldest North American boat show entered its 112th year.

The show's dates this year - Jan. 25-29 - helped draw throngs to the Javits Center in Manhattan. For years, the show had grappled with dates that fell close to New Year's Day, which challenged it to draw buyers.


Yacht Designers and Surveyors Association 2017 conference

The annual YDSA London conference will include a presentation on End of Life yachts from the perspective of a polymers expert in the automotive industry.

Also under discussion will be cyber security, compass adjusting, the latest software for RCD construction files, plus two equipment presentations - diesel fired heating systems aboard marine craft from Eberspächer and features and benefits of radar reflectors from Echomax.

The event takes place on March 14 at Inmarsat, Old Street, London and at the end of the day there will be a reception for insurers and surveyors to share information on insurance surveys, what they should and should not include, some of the myths and presentation. All are welcome.


International yacht refit professionals received recognition for their accomplishments at the second annual Refit Excellence Awards. Presented January 26, 2017, at Refit International Exhibition & Conference in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, the awards went to the refit teams behind the 66-foot sportfish REEL STEEL, the 148-foot motoryacht SCOUT, the 80-foot sailing yacht SWAN 80-002 and the 52-foot powerboat CUTTIN' UP.

Winning yacht refits were selected from online submissions accepted through the Refit show website at during 2016. Any yacht refit professional was able nominate a yacht for a Refit Excellence Award. An independent panel of judges selected the winners based on not only the finished yacht, but on the teamwork, problem-solving and efficiency of everyone involved in the refit, including the boatyard, captain, owner, designer, surveyor and management. The awards ceremony was held during the Refit Show at the Broward County Convention Center and was emceed by Kitty McGowan of the U.S. Superyacht Association.


Outboard Covers & Accessories (OCA) in the UK has announced that it has become an official supplier to the America's Cup Event Authority. The company will be fitting its Splash covers to the America's Cup fleet of support boats.

OCA has been manufacturing protective covers for over 15 years. OEM customers include Brunswick Marine, BRP Evinrude, Suzuki and Yamaha Marine.

In addition the company has announced that its long-standing relationship with Suzuki in the southern hemisphere has been extended into Europe and its Global P&A division.

Established in 2000 OCA manufactures custom designed outboard engine covers at its manufacturing facility in Australia.


The Montego Bay Yacht Club is delighted to announce that Jamaica Sport, a division of the Jamaica Tourism Board as a Gold Level sponsor for the 33rd edition of the Pineapple Cup - Montego Bay Race. In addition, teams are gearing up in Florida for the 811-nautical mile race departing from Miami on February 3rd.

With 15 days before the start of the Pineapple Cup, teams are in their final preparations. One of those teams, Wizard, a Reichel/Pugh 74, competed in the annual Fort Lauderdale-Key West Race this past weekend and was the first monohull to finish, the overall winner in IRC, and they also smashed the 12-year record.

Wizard Tactician, Charlie Enright said, "It's been a successful start to our season, and we are excited about racing to Jamaica through the Bahamas and the windward passage. The Pineapple Cup is certainly one of the cooler races you can do in distance racing and while the record is up for grabs, it's out of our control. So right now we know we have a great crew and we're looking forward to a good race against Prospector and the rest of the fleet!"

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The Last Word
To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public. -- Theodore Roosevelt

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