In This Issue
Strong Winds Batter Marseille | Change of Pace at 470 Europeans | Racing Manager - Royal Ocean Racing Club | How To Follow The Antigua Bermuda Race | All in the family | Normandy Channel Race | Melges 20 World League: The Fifth Event Gets Underway In Scarlino | UNICEF Clipper Team Skipper | Industry News | Featured Brokerage

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

Strong Winds Batter Marseille
The fourth day at the Finn Europeans was a long day spent on shore waiting in vain for the wind to abate enough to go sailing. The forecast had already prompted the Race Committee to delay the start to 12.00, but midday came and went and still the venue was battered by strong south-easterly winds and rain.

The sailors sheltered in the tent or displayed typical Finn bravado, but by 15.30, with the wind still hovering around 30 knots, racing was abandoned for the day.

However, Friday is promising perfect conditions, with moderate winds and sunshine. Three races are scheduled.

Top ten results after six races
1. Edward Wright, GBR, 23
2. Anders Pedersen, NOR, 26
3. Jonathan Lobert, FRA, 28
4. Ben Cornish, GBR, 29
5. Zsombor Berecz, HUN, 38
6. Ioannis Mitakis, GRE, 42
7. Milan Vujasinovic, CRO, 49
8. Henry Wetherell, GBR, 51
9. Oliver Tweddell, AUS, 55
10. Josip Olujic, CRO, 56

Change of Pace at 470 Europeans
All change on race day 4 at the 470 Europeans in Monaco as big breeze and waves hit the race track and upped the pace, in complete contrast to conditions over the first three days.

The more experienced teams came to the fore, with the biggest gains on the race track going to the world #1 pair of Afrodite Zegers/Anneloes Van Veen (NED) who clambered from leaderboard 16th up to 1st. Sweden's world #1 pairing of Carl-Fredrik Fock/Marcus Dackhammar continue to dominate in the men, but the points margins are closing in.

Racing was postponed this morning as waves of up to 4 metres and average wind speed of 25 knots, with gusts up to 32 knots, were too volatile a combination. So, the Race Committee waited a couple of hours until the wind had dropped to 22-23, with gusts of 25 knots, to get racing underway.

Big breeze and sea has meant some shredding of equipment, with damage to boats and a few bent masts, as the gusts powered through.

Provisional Top 5 Women - after 7 races
1. Afrodite Zegers/Anneloes Van Veen (NED-1) - 46 points
2. Agnieszka Skrzypulec/Jolanta Ogar (POL-11) - 46
3. Amy Seabright/Anna Carpenter (GBR-7) - 48
4. Noya Bar-Am/Nina Amir (ISR-11) - 51
5. Elena Berta/Sveva Carraro (ITA-6) - 51

Provisional Top 5 Men - after 8 races
1. Carl-Fredrik Fock/Marcus Dackhammar (SWE-350) - 23
2. Guillaume Pirouelle/Jeremie Mion (FRA-76) - 28
3. Deniz Cinar/Ates Cinar (TUR-890) - 34
4. Mathew Belcher/Will Ryan (AUS-11) - 35
5. Jordi Xammar/Nicolas Rodriguez (ESP-44) - 35

Racing Manager - Royal Ocean Racing Club
Royal Ocean Racing Club The Royal Ocean Racing Club is inviting applications from suitable candidates for the post of Racing Manager to direct a small but energetic race management team based in Cowes.

The RORC is an international members' club with clubhouses in London and Cowes. It has a very busy race programme organising up to 20 races per season in the UK and abroad. RORC's signature event is the biennial Rolex Fastnet Race which has over 300 boats taking part and the RORC Season Points Championship is a much-coveted series of offshore races running at regular intervals from February to November. RORC also runs a series of inshore events including the RORC Easter Challenge, Vice Admirals Cup, IRC National Championships and Commodores' Cup. Recent expansions of the annual programme include European and World championships

The successful candidate will have first-hand experience of yacht and keelboat racing both inshore and offshore and a network of contacts within the professional yacht racing community. A proven record of managing people, projects and budgets is essential plus good communication and interpersonal skills. An understanding of commercial sponsorship and experience in marketing and communications would be valuable to the role.

The role will involve travelling to events within Europe, America and the Caribbean and weekend work for which time off in lieu will be given.

Salary is negotiable according to experience but a range of benefits include a pension scheme, life and travel insurance and 25 days' annual leave. An annual performance bonus may be awarded.

A full job description can be sent upon application. Closing date for applications is Thursday 1st June 2017.

Send covering letter and CV's by post to:
Royal Ocean Racing Club
20 St James' Place
London SW1A 1NN

Or by email to:

How To Follow The Antigua Bermuda Race
Start Friday May 12, 2017 - 1200 (local time GMT -4)

Race Tracker:
Track the fleet as they head to Bermuda: All competing yachts are fitted with YB Trackers and will be sending in blogs telling the story of the race.

Race Website: Race reports, blogs, images and video from the boats can all be found on the race website.

Like and share our official Facebook page:


Video: Videos will be available on our website, Facebook page and YouTube channel.

All in the family
Capri, Italy: One of the interesting storylines surrounding the Farr 40 competition at Rolex Capri Sailing Week involved Claudia Rossi. Claudia, daughter of class stalwart Alberto Rossi, was serving as guest driver of Pazza Idea at the request of owner Pierluigi Bresciani.

Claudia Rossi has proven far more than a novelty act, helping lift the performance off Pazza Idea to the point it is challenging for the regatta championship. With Claudia at the helm, Pazza Idea won Race 4 and placed second in Race 5 in heavy air conditions on Thursday.

Pazza Idea, a Corinthian entry in its second season on the International Circuit, moved into second in the overall standings with the strong outing and suddenly there is a budding father-daughter rivalry. Alberto Rossi and his veteran team on Enfant Terrible lead the regatta by tiebreaker over Pazza Idea with both Italian entries having totaled 12 points after two days of racing.

Normandy Channel Race
Since yesterday, some 20 Class40s have been neatly tied to the dock, Quai Vendeuvre, Bassin Saint-Pierre in Caen. 40 skippers have been good humouredly going about their final preparations under the watchful, indeed fascinated gaze of the children from the surrounding schools, who have come along to discover what offshore racing is all about. Over the coming hours, four other monohulls will flesh out what is another exceptional fleet, both in terms of quantity and quality.

Among the 10 nationalities represented, there are a plethora of candidates keen to succeed Tales II, last year's winning Spanish entry, with a number of French crews vying to curb the rise of the strong international crews. Through its highly demanding course, its looped circuit along the English Channel and the Irish Sea and the similar skill sets of its contenders, the Normandy Channel Race has really established itself over the first 7 editions, each more hotly contended than the last. It comes as no surprise then that every offshore racer has their sights on the big prize in Caen.

Just two minutes and 48 seconds separated the 2016 winner Tales II, skippered by the Spanish duo of Pablo Santurde - Fidel Turienzo, and runner-up Imerys (Phil Sharp - Sam Manuard); a symbol of just how fierce the competition is in this Normandy Channel Race.

After a day devoted to school children, the race village will open its doors to the public at 11:00am local time Firday. With a wealth of entertainment on offer on shore, as well as on the waters of the Bassin Saint-Pierre, the public is invited to an autograph signing session with the skippers on the podium bus at 16:00pm.

The official crew presentation is scheduled for Saturday at 16:00pm.

Melges 20 World League: The Fifth Event Gets Underway In Scarlino
Marina di Scarlino, Italy: Club Nautico Scarlino, which organized and played gracious host of the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship and last weekend's Melges 32 Class, will act as ground zero for what will be a ferocious battle. Starting Friday May 12 and running through until Sunday, May 14, the ultimate Melges 20 fight will take place.

Thirty-three teams are confirmed to be on the starting line which includes Porto Venere Champion Vladimir Prosikhin on Nika, and fellow Russian competitor and Melges 20 World League overall leader Igor Rytov aboard Russian Bogatyrs.

These two top competitors will face off against Australia's Rodney Jones' on Cars 167, Alexander Novoselov's Victor, Achille Onorato's Mascalzone Latino, Matteo Marenghi Vaselli's Raya, Valentin Zavadnikov's Synergy and South Africa's Tina Plattner/Tony Norris on TNT. The Corinthian division will be an equally intense fight as Emanuele Savoini at the helm of Evinrude, after a well-deserved victory in Porto Venere will aim to bring his season record to 2-0.

Melges 20 racing officially kicks off at Marina di Scarlino with the first warning signal scheduled at 13.30 on Friday, May 12th.

The Melges 20 World League European Division is supported by Helly Hansen, Garmin Marine, Toremar, Lavazza and Barracuda Communication.

UNICEF Clipper Team Skipper
Clipper Skipper Tristan Brooks, 35, from Barmouth, Wales, has today been named as the Skipper who will lead the Unicef team in the upcoming edition of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.

The experienced yachtsman said: "It's an absolute honour to be named as the Unicef Skipper for the Clipper 2017-18 Race.

"The bright blue Unicef boat entry became an icon of the Clipper Race fleet during the last edition of the race. It was a fantastic fundraising emblem that generated much needed awareness and engagement around the world and I look forward to building on that success in this year's campaign."

Earlier this year, Official Clipper Race Charity Unicef UK was gifted a team entry by race organisers.

"Unicef UK is very proud to be associated with Clipper Race and the wonderful team taking on this enormous physical challenge. The generosity shown to us through the yacht donation, alongside the wonderful fundraising efforts of the amazing crew members taking part, will go a long way in highlighting and helping to resolve the many dangerous challenges lots of children around the world face every day; violence, disease, hunger and the consequences of war and disaster.", said Mike Penrose, Unicef UK's Executive Director.

Unicef UK has been the Official Clipper Race Charity since the 2015-16 race, which provided the children's charity with a literal vehicle to raise awareness across the globe in destinations including South Africa, Australia, Vietnam, China, the US and Panama. The Clipper 2015-16 Race and its supporters raised more than £323,000, helping Unicef protect children in danger, transform their lives and build a safer world for tomorrow's children.

Industry News
North Technology Group (NTG) has announced the acquisition of the Hall Spars business out of receivership.

Hall Spars group was founded 37 years ago by Eric Hall in Bristol, Rhode Island and expanded to facilities in Auckland, New Zealand and Breskens, Netherlands.

The US parent company announced in early 2017 that it would be closing the doors due to well publicized financial challenges after an investment deal to stabilize the company at the end of 2016 fell through.

NTG's acquisition will see Hall Spars activities continue in Auckland and Breskens, and a re-establishment of Hall's Service presence in Rhode Island for both local and globally based customers.

"Hall Spars has long been highly regarded in the mast business and the financial challenges the company faced earlier this year were very saddening but reflect just how tough the marketplace has become," said Richard Lott, COO of North Technology Group. "Our involvement will secure the design records and so forth to the benefit of existing Hall customers everywhere, past present and future. We will retain many key staff and much production capability. It is a great fit for NTG and should be good for all involved." Lott concluded.


The takeover battle for the Dutch Akzo Nobel paints and coatings group by the US PPG Industries group is becoming more embroiled. The third bid by PPG, amounting to €26.9bn, has been rejected by Akzo Nobel, the owner of important yacht paint brands such as Awlgrip and International Paints.

Also a legal challenge to remove Akzo Nobel chairman, Antony Burgmans, has been launched by the rebel shareholder Elliott Advisors, a US-based hedge fund which holds a 3% stake in the Dutch company. Elliott has been pressuring Akzo Nobel management to engage in talks with PPG about the bid.

In a statement, Elliott says: "Akzo's rejection of its third proposal without entering into any constructive form of engagement is a flagrant breach of Akzo Nobel's boards' fiduciary duties and of Dutch corporate law and an arrogant dismissal of recognised principles of proper corporate governance".


Six months' before METSTRADE 2017 opens for business, organisers, RAI Amsterdam, have announced that 92% of the floor space has been sold.

The show runs from November 14 to 16 with the three dedicated pavilions for superyacht, construction & materials and marina sectors also 'growing exponentially'.

New for 2017 will be an Electric & Hybrid Showcase that will focus on ways to implement these forms of propulsion in the boat building process.

With an eye on the environment, boat builders and designers are increasingly focused on electric and hybrid propulsion, seeking new opportunities and possibilities to implement them in every area of construction.

Just two stands are left in the SuperYacht Pavilion, the US area looks set to be repeated and the German and Italian sections of the SYP will also be bigger.


Faper Group, the holding company founded by Fabio Perini that encompasses Italian shipyards Perini Navi and Picchiotti, signed a partnership agreement today with Fenix Srl, the company belonging to Italian entrepreneur Dino Tabacchi's family.

The partnership involves a capital increase of €27m, which will lead to the following division of shares: Faper 50.01% and Fenix Srl 49.99%.

The move follows two years of reorganisation and restructuring at Perini Navi, which will now be able to launch new models and important innovations on the market.

The company has also announced that Lamberto Tacoli, who left his position at CRN SpA last year, will be appointed chairman and CEO, whereas Fabio Perini will maintain the role of honorary chairman and Fabio Boschi and Edoardo Tabacchi will be appointed vice chairman.


The Cape Town International Boat Show has been sold to Messe Frankfurt, one of the world's biggest exhibition organisers with 138 exhibitions across five continents.

As part of the handover process, the company will manage this year's show in conjunction with current owner Dana Whiting from Impact Plus Trading.

The show has also been moved one week later (October 20-22) to accommodate exhibitors involved in the Annapolis show, Whiting said. This year's show will also have a bigger marquee and increased water space, he added.

Messe Frankfurt will work closely with the newly reconstituted South African Boatbuilders Export Council in developing the expanded show.


After a successful 2016 that rolled into a very busy 2017, New Zealand based yacht designer, Kevin Dibley was named 2017 Yacht Designer of the Year at the recent Asian Marine and Boating Awards in Shanghai.

Dibley had Hong Kong based Kraken Yachts Managing Director, Roger Goldsmith represent him and accept the award on his behalf at the China (Shanghai) International Boat Show, CIBS Gala dinner and the Asian Marine & Boating Awards which was held on April 27th, 2017.

Alistair Skinner, Judges Coordinator for the Asian Marine & Boating Awards comments:

"I for one have followed Kevin's (Dibley) work for some time, especially the boats he has drawn for Asian builders and have always noted the fairness of the lines. Perhaps not yet as recognised quite as much as some of the previous winners of the award but I am sure that is only a matter of time especially as, although small, the Asian arena is one of the growth hot-spots in the global leisure marine market"

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