In This Issue
Francis Joyon Has Smashed The Solo North Atlantic Record | Mighty Merloe and Comanche Set New Transpac Race Records | The Nations Trophy - Swan One-Design Racing at its best | Smallest winner crowned IRC European Champion | Rolex Farr 40 Worlds Gets Underway in Porto Cervo | Dragon Edinburgh Cup | Rambler 88 wins the King Edward VII Cup | Corfu Challenge - Final racing day | 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

Francis Joyon Has Smashed The Solo North Atlantic Record
French sailor Francis Joyon crossed the longitude of the Lizard at 0137 hrs UTC this morning (Wednesday 12th July 2017). This marks the finish line for the North Atlantic crossing from Ambrose Light off New-York.

With a race time of 5 days, 2 hours and 7 minutes, at the helm of his maxi-trimaran IDEC SPORT, he has beaten his own North Atlantic record.

At the helm of his previous Idec, Francis Joyon completed the voyage in June 2013 after 5 days 2 hours 56 minutes and 10s shattering the record time set by Thomas Coville (Sodebo). He has therefore improved on his own record today by 49 minutes.

Joyon set sail from New York at 2330hrs UTC last Thursday on his first solo trip aboard IDEC SPORT without any of the usual preparation, as his goal was simply to beat the cruise liner Queen Mary 2, which is now expected to arrive in Southampton on Thursday morning.*

* Editor: Note this... Joyon didn't wait for ideal conditions. He simply started at the same time as the Queen Mary 2 and sailed to a new record, solo aboard a maxi multihull. The French have regarded the North Atlantic as their personal backyard pond for decades. What a great way to head into Bastille Day. Bravo!

Mighty Merloe and Comanche Set New Transpac Race Records
Honolulu, Hawaii: Due to wind conditions veteran navigator Stan Honey described as a "surprisingly strong breeze," both the multihull and the monohull first-to-finish race records have fallen in the 2017 Transpac. Over a 2225-mile course that starts from Pt Fermin in Los Angeles and ends at Diamond Head in Honolulu, H.L. Enroe's ORMA 60 trimaran Mighty Merloe crossed the finish line first at 5:02:30 PM Hawaii Standard Time (HST) for an elapsed time of 4 days 6 hours 32 min 30 sec, a full 26.5 hours faster than the previous mark set in 1997 by Bruno Peyron and his team on Commodore Explorer.

Racing with Enroe was a highly-seasoned crew of offshore sailors, including Steve Calder, Jay Davis, Artie Means, Loic Peyron, Franck Priffit, Will Suto and Jacques Vincent.

In crossing the finish 3 and 6 hours later, respectively, even the next two boats to finish, Lloyd Thornburg's MOD 70 Phaedo and Giovanni Soldini's MOD 70 Maserati, also broke this record.

The next boat to come over the eastern horizon into the Molakai Channel towards the finish was Jim Clark's 100-footer Comanche, and at 11:55:26 local time, they too decisively established a new course record for monhulls with an elapsed time of 5 days 1 hour 55 min 26 sec. This new record is half a day faster than the previous mark set in 2009 by Neville Crichton's R/P 90 Alfa Romeo II.

In addition to Read and Honey, racing on Comanche was Nicholas Burridge, Richard Clarke, Justin Clougher, Julien Cressant, Shannon Falcone, Warwick Fleury, Ryan Godfrey, Kelvin Harrap, Anthony Mutter, Louis Sinclair, Casey Smith, Peter van Niekerk, and John Von Schwarz.

The Nations Trophy - Swan One-Design Racing at its best
Nations Trophy The first edition of The Nations Trophy will be held from 10 - 14 October 2017 in Palma de Mallorca hosted by the Real Club Nautico Palma and is open to three Swan One-Design classes: ClubSwan 50 and ClubSwan 42, which will also be competing for their European Championship; and, Swan 45, which will also be contesting its World Championship.

The Nations Trophy is reminiscent of events popular during one of the golden ages of international yacht racing. The Admiral's Cup, launched in by the RORC in 1957, was the catalyst for number of nation versus nation team events including the Sardinia Cup in Italy (first held in 1978) and the Clipper Cup (later Kenwood Cup) in Hawaii (first held in 1978). Other events include the Southern Cross Cup (Australia, 1967) and even the Onion Patch Trophy (USA, 1986). While a number of these events have fallen by the wayside as trends in yacht racing have changed, the sentiment that nation versus nation competition should be a strong part of the sailing world has never wavered. The Nations Trophy is a small step towards reinvigorating this element of the sport.

Enter while you can. Charter yachts are available, but you need to be quick!

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Smallest winner crowned IRC European Champion
The second ever IRC European Championship took place in the south of France over four days last week for an international fleet of 53 boats.

While last year the inaugural event was incorporated into Volvo Cork Week, this year's IRC European Championship was a stand-alone affair, held off Marseille, the 2017 European Capital of Sport and the potential 2024 Olympic sailing venue, should Paris win its bid. It was run by the Union Nationale pour la Course au Large (UNCL), in conjunction with the three Marseille clubs, Centre Nautique et Touristique du Lacydon (CNTL), Societe Nautique de Marseille (SNM) and Union Nautique Marseillaise (UNM) - the first time they had organised a major international regatta together.

The Marseille 2017 IRC European Championship title was open to boats with an IRC TCC of 0.900 -1.400. In practice entries ranged from 31 footers to TP52s, with IRC, the rating rule of the Royal Ocean Racing Club and UNCL, creating a level playing field for all. Racing was held on windward-leewards and longer courses around Marseille's off-lying Frioul islands in conditions ranging from light on the first two days, building over the weekend into the high teens.

IRC Zero for the fastest boats, featured four TP52s and the Italian Cookson 50, Endless Game, helmed by Spanish double Olympic medallist Luis Doreste Blanco. The longest boats were the Swan 601, Lorina 1895 and the Wally 60, Wallyño, which, despite the grand prix competition, led IRC Zero after day two.

However ultimately crowned 2017 IRC European Champion was one of the smallest boats: the JPK 10.10, Expresso 2 in IRC Four. Owner Guy Claeys regularly races shorthanded, but on this occasion Expresso 2 was sailed with a full crew including Olympic Soling sailor turned sailmaker, Sylvian Chtounder.

The 1994 vintage Alice, originally owned by Vendee Globe skipper Mike Golding, was the sole British entry in this year's IRC Europeans and impressively counted no points worse than a second.

Surprisingly in IRC Three, the top three boats were all Farr 36s, Alice and Frantz Philippe's second-placed Farr 36 Absolutely, recent winner of the inshore racing at Rolex Giraglia Cup, both IRC-optimised by designer Mark Mills. They and Week End Millionaire all overcame race favourite, Gilles Pages' Sun Fast 3600 Tip, present leader of the UNCL's 2017 Mediterranean IRC Championship. -- James Boyd

Overall results by class (including discard)
IRC Zero
1. Team Vision Future - Jean-Jacques Chaubard (FRA) - 18
2. Phoenix - Hasso Plattner (USA) - 19
3. Arobas2 - Gerard Logel (FRA) - 22

1. Tonnerre de Glen - Dominique Tian (FRA) - 7
2. Imagine - Jean-Claude Andre (FRA) - 16
3. Cippalippa Rossa - Paolo Guido Gamucci (ITA) - 17

1. Geranium Killer - Pascal Fravalo (FRA) - 8
2. Jivaro - Yves Grosjean (FRA) - 15
3. Adrenaline - Michel Gendron (FRA) - 15

IRC Three
1. Alice - Simon Henning (GB) - 8
2.Absolutely - Philippe Frantz (FRA) - 20
2.Week-end Millionnaire - Yves Ginoux (FRA) - 23

IRC Four
1. Expresso 2 - Guy Claeys (FRA) - 7
2. Fioupelan - Frederic Forestier (FRA) - 28
3. Old Fox - Paolo Colangelo (ITA) - 28

Rolex Farr 40 Worlds Gets Underway in Porto Cervo
Porto Cervo, Italy: The twentieth edition of the Rolex Farr 40 World Championship, organised by Yacht Club Costa Smeralda with the support of Title Sponsor Rolex, will be held from Thursday July 13th to Sunday July 16th and will be raced in the waters off Porto Cervo. This is the third time that Yacht Club Costa Smeralda has organised this event in Porto Cervo, after the 2003 and 2009 editions.

The Rolex Farr 40 World Championship officially gets underway today, Wednesday July 12th tactician's briefing where some of the world's top sailors will be present. Count on seeing Italians Vasco Vascotto, Matteo Ivaldi and Michele Regolo, the American Terry Hutchinson, the New Zealander Hamish Pepper, and the Brit Nick Rogers, twice an Olympic silver medallist in the 470 Class. As per tradition, the briefing will be followed by a Welcome Cocktail on the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda's poolside terrace.

Racing on the first day of this event is scheduled to start Thursday July 13th at noon. Up to three windward/leeward courses will be raced each day for a maximum total of 11 races. The forecast calls for north-westerly Mistral breezes that should shift towards the north-east during the weekend.

Dragon Edinburgh Cup
Cowes, Isle of Wight, UK: What a difference a day makes! After the opening day's torrential rain and strong winds, day two of the Dragon Edinburgh Cup 2017, sponsored by Oliver Morgan Architects and Stoneham Construction Ltd and hosted by the Island Sailing Club, Cowes, produced light airs, brightening skies and a complete reversal of fortune for a number of the competitors.

By the time Race Officer Gill Smith had the fleet under starters order for the third race of the series, the wind was predominantly circa 10 knots but with gusts up to around 17, lulls down to 6 and big shifts around a mean of nor-nor-east. The wind continued to fluctuate throughout the day and there was the added bonus of an exceptionally big spring tide turning between races, so the committee did particularly well to achieve two excellent courses.

Going into the day Andy Beadsworth, Poul Richard Hoj-Jensen and Martin Payne were in a three way tie for the lead on six points apiece. All three are world class sailors, but on paper Beadsworth, as recently crowned Dragon World Champion, should have had the upper hand. But even the best in the world can have an off day and that was certainly the case for Beadsworth today.

In the overall standings, the single discard will not come into play until after tomorrow's fifth race has been completed. As a result, Payne now leads the fleet by five points from Hoj-Jensen with Goikhberg third and Beadsworth fifth. But Payne is realistic and knows that had the discard come into play today Hoj-Jensen would actually be leading the regatta with Beadworth second and himself third. Payne summed up the complexity of today's sailing perfectly saying, "It's like a chess game, you have to think three or four moves ahead, and even then it could still be wrong. It's going to be a tough regatta." -- Fiona Brown

Top ten after four races:

1. Full Speed, Martin Payne Gillian Hamilton, Chris Bittain, GBR
2. Danish Blue, Poul Richard Hoj-Jensen, Hamish McKay, Paul Blowers, GBR
3. Murka, Igor Goikhberg, Dmitry Berezkin, Roman Sadchikov, RUS
4. Provezza Dragon, Andy Beadsworth, Simon Fry, Ali Tezdiker, TUR
5. Badger, Tom Vernon, Oliver Spensley-Corfield, Adam Bowers, GBR
6. Ecstatic, James Eric Williams, Rory Paton, Katie Cole, GBR
7. C Aimee, Graham Bailey, Julia Bailey, Will Heritage, Will Bedford, GBR
8. Harry, Mike Budd, Mark Greaves, Mark Mansfield, GBR
9. Jerboa, Gavia Wilkinson-Cox, Mark Hart, Andrew Norden, GBR
10. Jaguar Martin Byrne Connor, Byrne, Pedro Andrade, IRL

Full results

Rambler 88 wins the King Edward VII Cup
2017 Cowes Dinard St Malo Race
Course: Cowes - Casquets - Les Hanois - St Malo. Approximately 151 miles.

Organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club in association with UNCL, Yacht Club de Dinard, Societe Nautique de la Baie de St. Malo, Junior Offshore Group (JOG) and the Royal Yacht Squadron.

George David's American Canting Keel Maxi, Rambler 88 has won the 2017 Cowes Dinard St Malo Race, and the King Edward VII Cup dating back to 1906. Rambler 88 took Line Honours in the 151 nautical mile race, and after IRC time correction, is the overall winner out of 176 entries. James Neville's British HH42 Ino XXX is second overall, and first in IRC One. Dutch Ker 46 Van Uden, skippered by Rogier Van Overveld, is third overall.

The Cowes Dinard St Malo Race is the ninth race of the RORC Season's Points Championship. The 14 race series attracts an international and varied fleet. For the serious offshore sailor, trying to win the Season's Points Championship is a real challenge. The defending champion, Nick & Suzi Jones' Beneteau First 44.7 Lisa, sailed by RORC Commodore Michael Boyd, leads the series for 2017. Rob Craigie's Sun Fast 3600 Bellino, racing Two Handed with Deb Fish is second, and Gilles Fournier & Corinne Migraine J/133 Pintia is third, less than a point ahead of Thomas Kneen's JPK 10.80 Sunrise.

The 2017 RORC Season's Points Championship continues with The Channel Race on Saturday 22 July.

Corfu Challenge - Final Racing Day
Corfu, Greece: Congratulations to George Sakellaris and Team Proteus, the 2017 Corfu Challenge winners! One final race was held on Saturday, and spectators were delighted to watch the exciting prestart match racing that played out. Conditions started out lighter than previous days, 12-16 knots from the north west. When asked about the team's prestart plan, Proteus strategist Tommaso Chieffi explained, "Initially we decided to match race MOMO, we knew if we didn't they would come after us. There was a lot of action because aside from us, Cannonball was going after Bella Mente to race for third." He expanded on the exciting start, "The great thing about this boat is they are so maneuverable and light, and with the large number of crew you can pretty much do anything." The race seven winner was Hap Fauth and team Bella Mente followed by MOMO, Proteus, Evniki and Cannonball. Rolex, the Official Timepiece, congratulates all teams for completing the first ever Maxi 72 regatta in Greece.

The event was exceptional for many reasons, but perhaps the most standout was the journey of Evniki. It was the first-time a group of young sailors, under the guidance of veteran professionals, have raced in a world class Maxi 72 event. Over the course of the week, the team was immersed in the daily grind amongst some of the highest-level sailors, surely an unforgettable experience.

Awards were given at the Museum of Asian art at the beautiful Palace of St. Michael and St. George in the heart of Corfu. Along with the hand crafted first-place trophy, a perpetual trophy was introduced in honor of George Coumantaros. This year it was given to all Corfu Challenge Maxi 72 owners to signify the high level international racing showcased throughout the week.

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