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Multihull Line Honours For Phaedo3
While the multihull race record was not broken this year, Phaedo3 and Maserati had an incredible 600 mile high-speed duel. Lloyd Thornburg's MOD70, Phaedo3 finished the 2017 RORC Caribbean 600 on Tuesday 21 February 2017 at 21 hrs 20 mins 46 secs AST, taking Multihull Line Honours.

The winning crew were: Lloyd Thornburg (Skipper), Brian Thompson (Co-skipper), Paul Allen, Peter Cumming, Michel Desjoyeaux, Robert Greenhalgh, Damian Foxall and Miles Seddon.

Phaedo3 held on to win the battle of the trimarans, just 12 minutes ahead of Giovanni Soldini's Italian MOD70, Maserati. The high-speed battle saw the lead change hands at least four times during the race. The experimental semi-foiling Maserati showed incredible speed on a reach and it took a momentous effort from Phaedo3's well established team to hold off the challenge. There was high drama at Guadeloupe with vicious squalls and heroics from Maserati's crew diving into the water to free the boat from a fish trap.

Maserati skipper, Giovanni Soldini was full of praise for both his Maserati team and their rivals Phaedo3. The Italian MOD70 has an experimental foil enabling them to literally fly when the boat is on starboard, but not when they are on port, enabling them to give Phaedo3 a really close fight.

Maserati crew: Giovanni Soldini, Guido Broggi, Francesco Malingri, Vittorio Bissaro, Carlos Hernandez, Oliver Herrera, Francois Robert, Matteo Soldini

Simon & Nancy De Pietro racing C.n.b. Briand 76, Lilla are approaching Guadeloupe and are estimated to be leading IRC One by a slender margin from Theodore Kane, Jr's Swan 66 Bounty. Three yachts are in a close battle for victory in IRC Two. Dominic Hurndall's Grand Soleil 43, Jua Kali has taken the normal route on the downwind leg to Guadeloupe. However Ross Applebey's Scarlet Oyster and Ed Fishwick's Redshift on El Ocaso passed Montserrat to port. After IRC time correction, there are just seconds separating the three yachts after 330 miles of racing. In IRC Three, Jonty Layfield's Swan 48 Sleeper X is enjoying a comfortable lead after IRC time correction and by 22 miles on the water from Andy Schell & Mia Karlsson's swan 48, Isbjorn. Peter Hobbs' Sigma 38, Sam is approaching the halfway stage in the race and is estimated to be in third in class.

A close battle is raging in the Class40 Division as the three leaders approach the wind shadow of Guadeloupe with barely a mile separating them. Catherine Pourre's Eärendil is just ahead of Peter Harding's Phor-ty and both team have chosen to take a line close into Guadeloupe. Halvard Mabire and Miranda Merron's Campagne de France has chosen to go offshore by approximately 8 miles.

In the battle of the schooners, the 182ft Adela, skippered by Greg Perkins is rounding Iles des Saintes with 220 miles to go. The 162ft schooner Eleonora, skippered by Brendan McCoy is 44 miles behind Adela on the water.

Rambler 88 Takes Monohull Line Honours
George David's American Maxi, Rambler 88 finished the 2017 RORC Caribbean 600 on Wednesday 22 February 2017 at 11 hrs 56 mins 17 secs AST taking Monohull Line Honours.

This year was George David's third line honours win in the RORC Caribbean 600. However, the record set by his previous boat, Rambler 100 in 2011 remains intact for another year. However, George David was very content with the performance of the team and Rambler 88.

"The forecast was right on for direction as the breeze went a full 360 degrees, but we had a bit more velocity than anticipated. It was a good race and we enjoyed it very much but this was a different race altogether. It was more like the English Channel than the Caribbean and Rambler 88 will be racing there this summer in our build up to the Rolex Fastnet Race. I have never taken part in those races before so that will be interesting as well.

Mike Slade's British Maxi Leopard 3 is expected to be the second monohull to finish the race in front of two Maxi72s vying for the overall win under IRC: Hap Fauth's Bella Mente and George Sakellaris' Proteus. Lionel Pean's French Volvo70 SFS II is also expected to finish the race today, 22 February at 17:30 AST.

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

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J Class Joins The International Maxi Association To Gain Its First World Championship
Just over one hundred years on from the advent of the Universal Rule, to which they were originally built, the J Class will this year get to race its first ever World Championship.

The J Class Association has recently become an affiliate member of the International Maxi Association (IMA). The IMA administers the International Maxi Class, recognised by the sport's governing body, World Sailing. This status permits the IMA to stage annual World Championships for maxi boats, notably the Maxi 72 World Championship, held every September in Porto Cervo, Sardinia and now it's second, the J Class World Championship.

For the magnificent Js, their first World Championship will conclude a heavily America's Cup-orientated 2017 season, following the America's Cup Superyacht Regatta and the America's Cup J Class Regatta. Both will be held in Bermuda in June, the latter coinciding with the first two days of the 35th America's Cup.

From Bermuda, the world's most magnificent sailing yachts, famous for their slender lines and extreme 40ft long overhangs, will return to their spiritual home of Newport, Rhode Island on the US East Coast. Here at the J Class World Championship over 21-26th August, the boats will once again get to compete on the same waters as they did in their heyday in the 1930s when American yachts, led by the likes of Harold S. Vanderbilt, of the US railroad dynasty, mounted successful defences against strong British challenges from grocery chain and tea magnate Sir Thomas Lipton and aviation pioneer Sir Tom Sopwith.

This landmark year for the Js coincides with the class having never been stronger, J Class Association secretary Louise Morton observes: "With the launch of Svea/JS1 last month, the J Class fleet now has nine yachts afloat - the largest number in our history. As the JCA continues to grow and welcome new launches to the fleet, we are really excited to be holding our first J Class World Championship in Newport this summer.

"Hosted by New York Yacht Club in collaboration with the JCA and the IMA, at least six Js are expected to grace the start line at this inaugural edition. We have long enjoyed a positive racing relationship with IMA members and are delighted now to be part of its supportive, global community."

Already signed up for the event are Velsheda, Ranger, Lionheart, Svea, Hanuman and Topaz, which will be based in Newport Shipyard.

EFG Bank Monaco Win Leg 3 of EFG Sailing Arabia
Reigning EFG Sailing Arabia - The Tour champions EFG Bank Monaco (MON) today tightened their grip on the overall lead with a victory in the third offshore leg of the race around the Arabian Gulf.

The veteran crew saw off spirited attacks from rivals Team Al Mouj Muscat (OMA) and Team Zain (KUW) to seal the top spot in the 153-nautical mile sprint from Khasab on Oman's Musandam Peninsula to Abu Dhabi.

The triumph, their second in three legs, is all the more impressive given the hurdles EFG Bank Monaco faced on the leg - at one point their Farr 30 racing yacht became entangled in a fishing net, causing them to lose the lead to Team Al Mouj Muscat, but they were able to recover and overhaul their rivals in the early hours of this morning.

It puts the three-time winners of EFG Sailing Arabia - The Tour, led by Frenchman Thierry Douillard and including former match racing world champion Mathieu Richard, 4 points clear at the top of the overall standings with two offshore legs and two in-port race series remaining.

Racing resumed on Wednesday morning with Leg 4, the penultimate stage of the 763nm Arabian classic that will see the fleet race to Doha, Qatar, a 160nm stage with another night - if not two - at sea. Once in Doha the teams will contest the second in-port race series of EFG Sailing Arabia - The Tour, a vital opportunity to score points before the final offshore leg to Dubai which begins on February 26 and a last in port race.

Follow the action live:

Results of Leg 3:
1. EFG Bank Monaco (MON/Thierry Douillard) - 1.5 points
2. Team Al Mouj Muscat (OMA/Christian Ponthieu) - 3
3. Team Zain (KUW/Cedric Pouligny) - 4.5
4. Team Renaissance (OMA/Fahad Al Hasni) - 6
5. Bienne Voile (SUI/Lorenz Mueller) - 7.5
6. Adelasia di Torres (ITA/Renato Azara) - 9
7. Team Averda (GBR/Andrew Baker) - 10.5

Costa To Cross Thursday Morning For 14th
Didac Costa is due on the finish line between eight and nine Thursday morning (Thursday), the fifth solo skipper to finish the race over a six day period. Among the VIPs who have travelled from his native Barcelona to welcome Costa are the Fundacio Navegacio Oceànica Barcelona's CEO Xose Carlos Fernández and Javier Vilaronga, the Director of their Ocean Base. Costa's boat, the former Kingfisher is finishing her fifth round the world race. At 1700hrs UTC this evening Costa was less than 100 miles from the finish line, making nine knots and was expected to complete his first solo non stop race around the world in a fading W'ly breeze with around 10kts on the line, smooth seas and possibly some light rain.

Progress has remained painfully slow for Kiwi skipper Conrad Colman today as he sails into a wide high pressure ridge which stands between him and the favourable westerly breezes which should finally allow the jury rigged Foresight Natural Energy to sail more directly towards the French coast and the finish line of the Vendee Globe off Les Sables d'Olonne.

In the 24 hours to 1400hrs this Wednesday afternoon Colman had made just 61.4 nautical miles, a crawling average of 2.4kts as he fights northwards in the SW of the Bay of Biscay. He is expected to emerge into a NW'ly breeze in the early hours of Thursday morning, the wind strengthening and backing to the W during tomorrow when Colman should be able to make more meaningful speeds towards the finish. With 215 miles to the finish line, the 33 years old New Zealander has sailed more than 500 miles since he set his jury rig on 16th February. He is now expected to finish his Vendee Globe to a hero's welcome on Saturday.

Likely to pass the unfortunate Colman during the final 100 miles of their race, Romain Attanasio seems set to take 15th place and by comparison, has a relatively straight run to the finish line. His estimated finish time is Friday morning, around 24 hours after Costa.

Marine Engineering For Dopes: Why My Hull Is Shaped The Way It Is
Hull shape: Can't explain it? Can't understand what the hell to do? Let's fix that with a deep boat-nerd dive into a hull-development job: The serious shaping in Bluewater 56, part of our growing efforts in production boats. From stem to stern, to buttocks to sheer, in just 700 or so words, we will explain how to tell the story of any boat, just by its shape, length and overall boatness.

Claasen Shipyards in the Netherlands has delivered the 27.50-metre sailing yacht Acadia to her delighted owner. This Truly Classic 90 from the boards of Hoek Design has been finished to the highest standard, resulting in an elegant and luxurious yacht which is equally at home cruising as she is on her occasional appearances competing in superyacht regattas. Acadia is the 26th yacht designed by Hoek Design to be built at Claasen.


Born in 2016 of a unique collaboration between Arkema and the Lalou Multi ocean racing sports team, the Arkema 3 Mini 6.50 prototype is now entering a new phase: the world of sports competition. The technical innovations of the monohull have been validated and its young skipper, Quentin Vlamynck, is familiarizing himself with the boat. It now remains to put this "racing beast" to the test against the competition!

Arkema 3 is a concentrate of innovations like no other sailboat in its category before. First of all with its construction process involving the use of Elium®, the first liquid thermoplastic resin allowing the manufacture of recyclable composite parts.

This monohull is also notable by its many technical and architectural innovations: rounded stem, tilting foils, canting keel, wing mast, adjustable forestay, retractable bowsprit, etc.

In April Quentin and Arkema 3 will start the 2017 season in the Lorient BSM, a double-handed race he will compete in with Lalou Roucayrol. For the next competitions, Quentin will go it alone and will validate his qualification for the Mini-Transat by completing the Pornichet Select 6.50, the Mini in May and the Trophee MAP.


With the launch of 'Flame' the first Cape 31 in South Africa last week, Mills Design's latest high performance design was revealed. Conceived and brought to fruition by Cape Town resident and prominent sailor Lord Irvine Laidlaw of 'Highland Fling' fame, it is in production and already growing as a successful new One Design class at the Royal Cape Yacht Club.

Boasting high performance features such as our innovative ramp deck, an all-carbon keel fin, and a Southern Spars carbon rig, the light but powerful 31 has already impressed sailors in Cape Town across the full range of conditions they get there.


Project Solar, also know as hull Y712, is undergoing sea trials near Rotterdam. On delivery, it will be one of the largest sailing yachts in the world.

The 105-metre (344-foot) Project Solar is nearing its delivery date, having just undergone sea trials in The Netherlands.

The superyacht has been designed by Nuvolari Lenard with naval architecture by Dykstra, which has the 88-metre Maltese Falcon as part of its portfolio.

It has a three rotating mast structure similar to the Maltese Falcon, and is expected to be delivered to its owner by April 2017.

Built by the Dutch shipyard, Oceanco, Project Solar has a steel hull and aluminium superstructure.

The sailing yacht is spread over three teak decks and has a 15-metre (49-foot) beam which allows for a total interior volume of 2,700GT.

It comes with six cabins, and can accommodate up to 12 guests.


J Class Svea

The new J-Class yacht Svea has been pictured undergoing sea trials after her recent launch at Dutch yard Vitters. Previously known as Project J-S1, she is the first J Class project from Vitters and at 43.6 metres she will be the longest of the current Js.

Her design by Hoek Design Naval Architects incorporates an integrated traditional long keel from the original 1937 drawings by Thore Holm. However, the designers have brought the 75-year-old design up-to-date with an aluminium hull and 53.75 metre carbon fibre main mast.

Svea's interior was designed by Pieter Beeldsnijder Designers & Naval Architects and will reportedly have traditional styling in line with the overall character of the yacht.

The original design for the deck construction allowed for various layouts, but the owner's brief led to a change in the original deck arrangement to accommodate the equipment used in modern J Class racing. As the GA below shows, Svea features accommodation for six guests in three cabins, including a master and two twins, while the crew quarters allows for a staff of up to seven people.

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The Last Word
In the beginning of a change, the patriot is a scarce man, and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot. -- Mark Twain

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