In This Issue
29er World Championship Day 2: Patience, Sunshine. | 49erFX, 49er, Nacra 17 European Championships | Timeless (and fast): The Swan 60 | Favourites Flex Their Muscles In St Petersburg | Day Four at Lendy's Cowes Week | Annabel Vose Scoops ELEMIS Ladies Day Trophy at Lendy Cowes Week | Team AkzoNobel sign up Martine Grael for the Volvo Ocean Race | What to look out for on Leg Zero | 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

29er World Championship Day 2: Patience, Sunshine.
Long Beach, CA: Fluky winds that refused to settle teased sailors and organizers alike, on Day Two of the Zhik 29er World Championship Regatta, hosted by Alamitos Bay Yacht Club.

For nearly two hours, the Alpha Course Race Committee boat - called Patience - and mark set boat - Sunshine - hailed each other incessantly; testing (and hoping for) steady enough wind direction and velocity to start a race. "Patience, Sunshine," reverberated across the course over VHF, sounding more like words of encouragement than a radio call. And they were, marks and lines were moved, and moved again, as races were postponed, started, postponed, recalled, and abandoned.

As winds ultimately crystalized and built - up to 10 knots at times - Bravo Course squeezed out three races, while Alpha Course completed two.

Argentina's team of Santiago Duncan Loias/Elias Dalli climbed a notch to the head of the leaderboard; followed by Benji Daniel/Alex Burger of South Africa; and Neil Marcellini/Ian Brill, USA. New Zealand's Seb Lardies/Scott McKenzie dipped to fourth place, due to a 27th place finish in Race Four; but are still just 20 points out of first place.

While Alpha Course waited patiently for wind, the team of Tania Bonilla/Nuria Miro were flourishing on Bravo Course's lighter air. The two-time Spanish Nationals winners struggled a bit in Monday's heavier winds. "Yesterday there were crazy waves. We're really good with light winds, so today was better," said Bonilla. The team placed first in today's first race and eighth in the third race, but were black flag disqualified in the second race of the day.

These university students, with Olympic dreams, are fighting to be the crowned the best woman's team at the 29er Worlds

Unseasonable weather conditions are expected to last through tomorrow. Attributed to a series of tropical depressions rolling across the Pacific, the increased moisture in the air has produced unusually cloudy skies, which slowed the onshore effect of the sea breeze, and threatened thunderstorms and rain.

Top five:
1. Santiago Duncan Loiaz / Elias Dalli, ARG, 19
2. Benji Daniel / Alex Burger, RSA, 23
3. Neil Marcellini / Ian Brill, USA, 36
4. Seb Lardies / Scott McKenzie, NZL, 39
5. Lachie Brewer / Max Paul, AUS, 41

49erFX, 49er, Nacra 17 European Championships
High pressure over the North Sea meant entirely new challenges for the 49erFX, 49er, and Nacra 17 fleets as the European Championship entered its third day today. A short postponement to let the wind fill in gave way to a full day of racing, with the 49erFX and Nacra 17's getting three races in while the 49ers finished their Qualifying series with two light air contests.

With the top 20 in the 49er and 49erFX fleets advancing to the Gold Fleet after today's action, one mistake could change the entire face of their regatta - as US Sailing Team representatives Steph Roble and Maggie Shea found out after getting caught on the top mark in the first race of the day - for over a minute.

While the skiff fleets move into gold/silver/bronze format tomorrow, the smaller Nacra 17 fleet continues with the more standard regatta format after another 3-race day. The light conditions meant the entire fleet could deploy a secret weapon that no team wanted to reveal too soon: Upwind spinnaker sailing.

Top five, 49er:

1. Dylan Fletcher-Scott / Stuart Bithell, GBR, 25.0
2. James Peters / Fynn Sterritt, GBR, 31.0
3. David Gilmour / Joel Turner, AUS, 31.0
4. Benjamin Bildstein / David Hussl, AUT, 34.0
5. Dominik Buksak / Szymon Wierzbicki, POL, 36.0

Top five, 49erFX:

1. Annemiek Bekkering / Cecile Janmaat, NED, 22.0
2. Jena Mai Hansen / Katja Salskov-Iversen, DEN, 29.0
3. Tina Lutz / Susann Beucke, GER, 33.0
4. Charlotte Dobson / Saskia Tidey, GBR, 34.0
5. Ragna Agerup / Maia Agerup, NOR, 38.0

Top five, NACRA 17:

1. John Gimson / Anna Burnet, GBR, 11.0
2. Ruggero Tita / Caterina Banti, ITA, 14.0
3. Fernando Echavarri Erasun / Tara Pacheco Van Rijnsoever, ESP, 18.0
4. Allan Norregaard / Anette Viborg, DEN, 25.0
5. Ben Saxton / Katie Dabson, GBR, 27.0

Timeless (and fast): The Swan 60
The Swan 60 has proved to be one of today's more discrete yet highly successful dual-purpose yachts

There are few marine brands that simultaneously conjure up style, quality, comfort and performance like Nautor Swan. For over half a century Swan have in every sense been delivering value to their owners, whether it's racing, cruising or, most commonly, a combination of both, in ways that have made the dozens of designs built by this Finnish company symbolic of a timeless style of yachting.

Many of the world's best naval architects have contributed experience and expertise to Swan yachts, as they each work to capture a unique balance of style, grace and functionality rarely found in other production builders. Meanwhile, uncompromising attention to detail in build quality allows the yachts to be actively enjoyed for decades rather than years.

Another value to Swan ownership is a professionally managed schedule of racing and cruising events tailored to cater to the high standards expected from Swan customers. Located in some of the most beautiful sailing venues in the world, Swan regattas are rarely less than memorable events!

Full article in the August issue of Seahorse:

Favourites Flex Their Muscles In St Petersburg
St. Petersburg, Russia: A full first day of racing in glorious sunshine and solid westerlies at the WMRT Match Cup Russia in St Petersburg saw the big beasts making some early shows of strength as they sought the best seeding for the knockout battles to come. Phil Robertson (CHINAone Ningbo), Ian Williams (GAC Pindar) and Yann Guichard (Spindrift Racing) all topped their groups, but they did not have it all their own way.

If the draw produced a group of death, it was Group 1, where current Match Racing World Champion and this year's clear leader, Robertson, discovered from the first race that it was not going to be all plain sailing. One of Perth's many emerging talents, Matt Jerwood (Redline Racing), made an early impression by winning the first race after a three-horse race with Robertson and Pieter-Jan Postma (Sailing Team NL).

Jerwood, currently fifth overall on the WMRT leaderboard thanks to finishing second at WMRT Match Cup Australia in March, where he lost 3-0 to Robertson, finished the day second in the pool after fluffing the start in race two and watching Robertson, score two bullets. But Jerwood roared off the start in the last race to make sure no one will fancy facing him when the knockout rounds start. He also did enough to perhaps elicit a small shot across the bows from Robertson.

In the first race in Group 2, GAC Pindar had a penalty re-start, went around the bottom mark in fourth but still managed to ease past in to second. "It's a very short course, the races were not much more than 10 minutes, so there's not much time to pull back if you have a bad start," Ian Williams, the six-times Match Racing World Champion, said.

Qualifying Results

Group 1
1. Phil Robertson (NZL), CHINAone Ningbo - 7 points
2. Matt Jerwood (AUS), Redline Racing - 9
3. Pieter-Jan Postma (NED), Sailing Team NL - 11
4. Viktor Serezhkin (RUS), Gazprom Team Russia - 17
5. Nico Delle Karth (AUT) - Chilli Racing - 18
6. Evgeny Elfimov (RUS) - M1 Cloud - 22

Group 2
1. Ian Williams (GBR), GAC Pindar - 6
2. Nicklas Dackhammar (SWE), ESSIQ Racing Team - 10
3. Jonas Warrer, (DEN) Aarhus Innovator - 12
4. Markus Edegran (USA), E11EVEN Racing - 14
5. Sally Barkow (USA), Magenta 32 - 18
6. Evgeny Neugodnikov (RUS), Team Tavatuy - 24

Group 3
1. Yann Guichard (FRA), Spindrift Racing - 5
2. Steve Thomas (AUS), RPM Racing - 11
3. Sam Gilmour (AUS), Neptune Racing - 12
4. Mans Holmberg (SWE), Gothenburg Racing - 13
5. Kim Kling (SWE), Caprice Match Racing Team - 20
6. Lukasz Wosinski (POL), Delphia Sailing Team - 23

Day Four at Lendy's Cowes Week
Photo by Ingrid Abery, A ridge of high pressure over the English Channel brought more bright and sunny weather, with a classic south-westerly breeze, to day four of Lendy Cowes Week. Today's first start was for the big yachts in the Sevenstar Triple Crown fleet that are competing some of event's biggest trophies, including the historic gold Queen's Cup.

The towering rig of Ludde Ingvall and Sir Michael Hintze's 100ft maxi CQS, starting on the outer section of the Royal Yacht Squadron line, dwarfed those of the surrounding yachts. She tacked for the line 40 seconds before HRH The Princess Royal fired the starting cannon and quickly blasted away to a big lead on the water in the western Solent.

Today marked the end of the eight race mini series the SB20 and J/70 classes have enjoyed over the first four days of the regatta. John Pollard's Xcellent won the SB20 Grand Slam, counting only podium results, with Elliot Noye's Porco Rosso second and Michael Cooper's Export Roo third.

Subject to protest, Paul Childs' F'in Magic 2 is winner of the J/70 series, on 16 points. Ali Hall's Sceptre was second on 24 points, just ahead of Jack Davies' Yeti, on 24.5 points. Both classes will continue to compete, with one race per day, for the rest of the regatta.

Tomorrow's race for the big yachts in the Sevenstar Triple Crown fleet will include all seven of the entries in the 2017/18 Volvo Ocean Race. Dubbed as 'Leg Zero' of the round the world race, this will be the first time they will have raced against each other. They will also be joined by the 100ft supermaxi CQS and by the Volvo 60 Team Jolokia.

Tomorrow a 50-mile race around the Isle of Wight is scheduled, with the course most likely to be clockwise. They will start at 0950, followed five mines later by the IRC Class 0 yachts. -- Rupert Holmes

Full results of all classes:

Annabel Vose Scoops ELEMIS Ladies Day Trophy at Lendy Cowes Week
Annabel Vose, has been announced as the winner of the ELEMIS Ladies Day Trophy at Lendy Cowes Week. The trophy recognises the outstanding contribution, commitment, or achievement of women in sailing.

The annual Ladies Day returned to Lendy Cowes Week on Tuesday 1st August with a number of celebrations culminating in the presentation of the Ladies Day Trophy to Annabel Vose at an exclusive evening reception held at Northwood House.

The trophy was introduced for the first time in 2006 to champion the role of women in sailing and the sheer number of female competitors racing at Lendy Cowes Week. There are some 8,000 competitors taking part in the regatta this year and around a third of them are female.

Selected as part of Sir Ben Ainslie's Land Rover BAR Academy team, Annabel competed in the 2017 Red Bull Youth America's Cup in Bermuda.

Team AkzoNobel sign up Martine Grael for the Volvo Ocean Race
Team AkzoNobel have added Martine Grael, the Brazilian sailing gold medallist from the 2016 Olympics in Rio, to their crew for the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18.

The 26-year-old is the daughter of race legend Torben Grael - Brazil's most successful Olympic sailor of all-time, with five medals - and she will be joining an AkzoNobel squad that features three members of her father's all-conquering Ericsson 4 team in 2008-09: British navigator Jules Salter, and watch leaders Brad Jackson from New Zealand and the Brazilian Joca Signorini.

Together with Kahena Kunze, Grael clinched gold in the 49er FX class in Rio. She is the first Brazilian woman ever to take part in the Volvo Ocean Race.

Team AkzoNobel is led by Simeon Tienpont and the Dutchman is delighted to add another huge sailing talent to his strong multinational crew.

Grael will take part in Leg Zero - a mandatory series of four preliminary races for the seven competing Volvo Ocean Race teams prior to the race start on October 22 in Alicante, Spain. Leg Zero begins on August 2 with a sprint around England's Isle of Wight, followed by the Rolex Fastnet Race on August 6-9 followed by a further two stages from Plymouth to St Malo and St Malo to Lisbon.

The Volvo Ocean Race begins on 22 October from Alicante, Spain and will visit a total of 12 Host Cities around the world.

What to look out for on Leg Zero
Leg Zero not only takes care of the official qualifying for the Volvo Ocean Race - it's also the first chance to see the teams in a competitive shakedown against each other.

Don't go looking for the logic, but Leg Zero is actually made up of four separate races. The seven teams taking part - team AkzoNobel, Dongfeng Race Team, MAPFRE, Vestas 11th Hour Racing, Sun Hung Kai/Scallywag, Turn the Tide on Plastic and Team Brunel - will face the following schedule:

2 August: a 50-nautical mile sprint around the Isle of Wight

6 August start: the Rolex Fastnet Race, a 608 nm coastal race that has historically served up a hearty dose of danger - and a lot of stressed navigators.

Then comes another big challenge, with two Volvo Ocean Race-only legs:

10 August start: Plymouth, England to St Malo in France (125 nm)

13 August start: St Malo to Lisbon, Portugal (770 nm)

There are no other boats to act as a distraction on these last two legs, just the world's strictest offshore One Design fleet and the clock ticking down to the start of the Volvo Ocean Race from Alicante, Spain on 22 October 2017.

Around the Island Race
A 50-mile coastal race in early August for some of the best sailors in the world who are preparing to tackle the world's longest racetrack in sport? Okay, let's be honest - we're not going to learn a lot here. There's nothing much at stake and in terms of racing, it's tempting to say there's nothing to see here... But then again, sandbanks, rocks and tides will make these 50 miles pretty challenging - and would you want to finish last out of the Volvo Ocean Race fleet?

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The Last Word
I choose to believe in an afterlife only because it is too horrible to believe that such a cool stud as myself could be allowed to disappear from the universe. -- J. R. 'Bob' Dobbs

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