In This Issue
Biggest Ever Clipper Race Sets Sail From Liverpool | St. Francis Yacht Club Reclaims Hinman Trophy Team Race | Land Rover BAR , Welcomed home to Portsmouth | Dramatic Final Day in the 8mr World Cup | Scott Kaufman Wins 2017 Etchells North American Championship | How Much in the Sponsorship Pot for all These Irish Offshore Sailing Superstar Hopefuls? | The last straw - Sailors for the Sea | J/24 Irish National Championship | Newport Bermuda Race Survey | Simon Hoffman & Santiago Alegre Are Special Award "Sailors of the Month" for August | Letters to the Editor | 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

Biggest Ever Clipper Race Sets Sail From Liverpool
The biggest ever edition of the 40,000-nautical mile Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, one of the world's toughest endurance challenges, involving higher participation numbers than ever before, got underway on the River Mersey, Liverpool, today, in front of thousands of spectators.

After heading out of the River Mersey and into the Irish Sea, the twelve-strong Clipper Race fleet is heading 6,400 nM south, the equivalent distance of ten Fastnet Races, through the Atlantic Ocean towards Punta del Este, Uruguay. This opening leg of the eleven-month series will take approximately 35 days to complete and is the longest ever in the race's 21-year history.

712 non-professional crew, the most ever in its eleven editions, from all walks of life and including many who had no previous sailing experience, will take on Mother Nature in this ultimate ocean challenge, representing 41 different nationalities.

With a short inshore circuit getting the race underway, Dare to Lead led the way over the line on the course's return loop with Garmin less than half a boat length behind.

Greenings and PSP Logistics struggled in the light airs and strong tide and faltered on the start line but had one of the loudest cheers as it rounded the mark and has managed to keep in touch with the fleet as the teams now race into the Irish Sea.

Following their stopover in Uruguay, the teams will then head to Cape Town, Fremantle, Sydney, Hobart, The Whitsundays, Sanya, Qingdao, Seattle, Panama and New York before a final crossing of the Atlantic Ocean towards Derry-Londonderry.

St. Francis Yacht Club Reclaims Hinman Trophy Team Race
Newport Rhode Island, USA: After three years of close, but not quite, St. Francis Yacht Club is again the champions of the New York Yacht Club Invitational Team Race Regatta for the Commodore George R. Hinman Masters Trophy. The West Coast team has been one of the strongest masters team racing crews for the past decade, including a run of three straight Hinman Trophy wins from 2011 to 2013. But victory in this most prized of masters team race events had narrowly eluded them of late. The St. Francis team was third in 2014 and second in 2015 and 2016.

The 2017 edition of the Hinman Masters, which is sponsored by Porsche and was first run in 2000, came down to a winner-take-all race between St. Francis Yacht Club, of San Francisco, and two-time defending Hinman Trophy champs Noroton Yacht Club of Darien, Conn.

In the best-of-five finals, Noroton jumped out of a 2-0 lead, but St. Francis battled back with two wins of its own to set up the deciding race.

The battle for third place featured the two teams who sailed the best in the round robin portion, New York Yacht Club 1 and Southern Yacht Club from New Orleans, which won 14 races. The teams split the first two races, with Southern winning the deciding race.

Winning Team, St. Francis Yacht Club: Russ Silvestri (skipper), Christopher Smith, Joe McCoy, Mario Yovkov, Nicole Breault (skipper), Rolf Kaiser, Thomas Iseler, Steve Marsh (team captain), Shawn Bennett (skipper), Tom Purdy, Tom Ducharme, and Melissa Feagin.

Final Results (with Round Robin Win Totals)
1. St. Francis Yacht Club, San Francisco, 11 points
2. Noroton Yacht Club, Darien, Conn., 14
3. Southern Yacht Club, New Orleans, 14
4. New York Yacht Club 1, 16
5. Seawanhaka Corinthian Yacht Club, Centre Island, N.Y., 12
6. Larchmont (N.Y.) Yacht Club, 8
7. Eastport (Md.) Yacht Club, 3
8. Texas Corinthian Yacht Club, Kemah, Texas, 8
9. Riverside Yacht Club, Greenwich, Conn., 2
10. New York Yacht Club Squared, 2

Land Rover BAR , Welcomed home to Portsmouth
Sevenstar Racing Yacht Logistics Sevenstar Racing Yacht Logistics Bring the Team Home. In a combined effort of complex, time-sensitive logistics, Sevenstar Racing Yacht Logistics have safely delivered home the team's most precious cargo - after a fantastic challenge by the team at Land Rover BAR contesting the 35th America's Cup in Bermuda earlier this year.

Sevenstar Yacht Transport are once again delighted to assist with the direct charter shipping for the return of Land Rover BAR's temporary team base, 35th America's Cup race boat, test boat, all the support boats and containers and of course the team crew personal effects.

Sarah Rickarby, Sevenstar Racing Yacht Logistics says "it has been our pleasure to work with the team at Land Rover BAR to safely deliver all their cargo to Bermuda and to also make sure it has come home safely to Portsmouth. Over the 3 outbound charter shipments and the return charter ship we have safely transported over 4000m3 of cargo for the team."

Sevenstar Racing Yacht Logistics
Meridians House, 7 Ocean Way
SO14 3TJ Southampton
Contact: Sarah Rickerby/Wouter Verbraak
Phone: +44 2380821030

Dramatic Final Day in the 8mr World Cup
Photo by James Robinson Taylor, Click on image to enlarge.

Eight Metre Worlds Hanko, Norway: With expectations of strong winds up to 20 + knots, only parts of the float chose to go out and fight for the top positions in the final day of the 8mR World Cup in Hanko.

The overall winner is, without beeing on the water in the second race today, GBR "Miss U" with Avia Willment. With a set of 7 1.places, one 2. and one 3.rd. the modern yacht didn´t have to finish the last race in order to win overall. With 12 points, the modern James Bond-inspired boat was 18 points ahead og number two.

Behind Miss U, Austrian Pandora and Werner Deuring took the second place overall with 18 points, followed by Norwegian "Wanda" and Lars Ingeberg with 37 counting points after deleting the DSQ from day two.

Sira Class

After tight fights among the 4-5 best yachts in the Sira Class, the above mentioned 2. and 3. place Pandora and Wanda, took 1. and in the Sira Class. Number three in the class for yachts built before 1960, was Canadian "Bangalore" withTerry Mc Laughlin with 42 points.

Number 4 and 5, were both Norwegian, and ended both on 53 counting points. Number 4, IF had a lower total sum before deleting the weakest single race result than Sira.

With winds up to 20+, the conditions were quite challaging the last day og the race, and many of the yachts that did not have an opportunity to advance, chose to stay inshore.

Finnish "Silja" came back to the yacht club with broken mast before the start,and H. M King Harald´s "Sira", was fighting for å top three position in the Sira class until her mast came down on the second cross leg in the second race. Fortunately there were no human injuries.

Results and entries

Scott Kaufman Wins 2017 Etchells North American Championship
San Diego, California, USA: Saturday was an exciting last day of the 2017 Etchells North American Championship hosted by San Diego Yacht Club (SDYC) and Etchells Fleet 13. Twenty-nine teams completed the last two races in Coronado Roads, culminating in a new North American Champion after eight races total.

Scott Kaufman (USA 1198) placed second in race eight, but with 25 points total after three days of racing, he was named the 2017 Etchells North American Champion. Friday was Kaufman's best day out on the water with two bullets and one third place finish.

This is Kaufman's first win of the Etchells North American Championship.

Next for Kaufman is the Etchells World Championship in September in San Francisco.

Top three competitors overall: Scott Kaufman (25 points), Steve Benjamin (38 points), and Argyle Campbell (45 points).

Top three competitors overall in the Corinthian Division: Keith Whittemore (60 points), Ted Hardenbergh (74 points), and Charlie Mann (128 points).

Finals results

How Much in the Sponsorship Pot for all These Irish Offshore Sailing Superstar Hopefuls?
There have been several Irish offshore racing sailors who have been making national and world headlines for some years now, but in recent weeks and months the wave of new enthusiasm for the big ticket events has surged to fresh heights.

One of the stories underlying all this is the potential for a specialist marine industry base in Cork Harbour serving the continuous needs of the most advanced racing machines, and providing a launch pad for global campaigns. The idea has been around for some time now, but as reported in as long ago as April 1st 2015, while the goodwill may be there, a firm decision is still awaited.

Local minister Simon Coveney has since moved on from the Marine to other Government departments. His present very senior role in representing Ireland through the Department of Foreign Affairs in decidedly turbulent times will mean that the needs of something so difficult to gauge for significant political and economic benefits will scarcely be top priority.

Yet for the many leading Irish sailors – both men and women – who have launched themselves into the decidedly uncertain world of top level professional competition, the problem of resources and facilities to keep the show on the road is always present, and frequently at crisis levels. -- WM Nixon in Afloat magazine

Full story at

The last straw - Sailors for the Sea
Sailors for the Sea Every long journey still (sic) begins with the first step. This month Sailors for the Sea turn their attention to those annoying plastic drinking 'aids'.

For centuries the enduring allure of tropical waters, trade winds and palm-fringed islands has enticed sailors to the Caribbean. The romantic notion of a pristine island paradise probably started with the stories brought back from the first Europeans to visit the Caribbean during the Age of Discovery. We're in a different age now, one where man's impact on the environment can be as big as nature's; to preserve the notion of pristine paradise we need to work with, rather than against, nature. A balance must be met to reduce our impact on the environment so that nature as we know it may be preserved for future generations.

Sailors for the Sea's Clean Regattas programme is designed to assist events and local communities to adopt standards and practices that will mitigate the effects of unsightly and environmentally unsafe refuse. The programme defines 25 best practices with guidelines on how to run any waterbased event in a sustainable way.

Full article in the August issue of Seahorse:

J/24 Irish National Championship
Photo by David Branigan, Click on image to enlarge.

J24 Lough Erne Yacht Club's JP McCaldin emerged overall winner after a blustery three-day regatta for the Mespil Hotel J24 National Championship at Sligo Yacht Club.

Sailing against a 26-strong fleet - a record turnout for recent times - plus a match-race challenge from runner-up Stefan Hyde, McCaldin scored all first and second places for the eight race series.

His principal challenger was almost as consistent with four wins as well but the Cork skipper also had to count a fourth and a third to admit defeat by just three points.

The duelling leaders were followed by a closely bunched pack of followers led by Martin Reilly on Crazy Horse who comfortably secured third place going into the final thanks to a consistent run ofmostly top five results.

Howth's Derek Bothwell returned to Sligo with the J24's once more and delivered the series in challenging weather, particularly for the first two days that saw strong winds whip big seas that provided thrilling surfing conditions for the fleet.

The national championships also marked the retirement of class maestro Flor O'Driscoll as Class President to great acclaim and a standing ovation at Saturday evening's dinner not only for his service to the fleet but also his persistence and continuing success afloat. -- David Branigan

Newport Bermuda Race Survey
This is an important request, especially for NBR racers, and I strongly encourage you to participate in the survey described below.

This season, the Newport-Bermuda Race and a few of North America's premier offshore race organizers and yacht clubs have teamed together to create a survey to learn what is most important to you, as an ocean cruiser or racer.

This survey is being implemented by an independent market research company, Performance Research, and is in no way affiliated with sales of any kind. The results will be completely anonymous and used to help improve how race organizers and clubs can better serve you for the future of our sport. Of course many of you are likely to receive multiple requests to take part from different organizations, and apologies if this is the second or third you've received! Once is enough.

We very much hope you will take advantage of this survey and provide us with your valuable feedback. It should take approximately 10 to 15 minutes to complete, and can be accessed on this link:

Should you have any questions or have any difficulty accessing the survey, please do not hesitate to contact the administrator at:


Jonathan Brewin
Chair, Bermuda Race Organizing Committee

Simon Hoffman & Santiago Alegre Are Special Award "Sailors of the Month" for August
In the 21 years since the "Sailor of the Month" awards were first introduced, we have always dutifully waited until the end of the month before allocating the plaudits, even when it has been clear for days or even weeks where the honours were going to be placed.

But special situations deserve special treatment, and 17–year-old Cork Harbour sailor Johnny Durcan's heartfelt thanks to fellow 29er sailors Simon Hoffman of Australia and Santiago Alegre of Spain for saving his life in the recent Worlds at Los Angeles has served as a very timely reminder of the dangers of our sport at its most intense and competitive levels.

So now is the time to honour what they did. And what they did was so special that we'll regard it as a privilege to re–state it all when the end of the month duly arrives in a fortnight's time.

We can all only hope that, faced with such a situation, our own instincts of humanity would guide us in the right way too. Yet that is something for which most of the rest of us can only hope. But Simon Hoffman and Santiago Alegre have shown us what true instincts of humanity can achieve, and they deserve heartfelt gratitude from the entire world of sailing.

Letters To The Editor -
Letters are limited to 350 words. No personal attacks are permitted. We do require your name but your email address will not be published without your permission.

* From Rob Kothe:

In response to a class executive committee request regarding the bearing recall, here is an update from Nacra Sailing:

Nacra Sailing answer:
- Sailing the Full Foiling Nacra 17 is allowed up until 15 knots of wind using the original bearing
- When a team has fit the new 'active bearing,' all limitations are removed

With the root cause of the failures found and the solution on its way, this is just a temporarily measure until further notice. We hope that teams can train to make their hours within the wind frame mentioned above and prepare themselves. For us too, it would be great if we can leave this behind soon and move on to build a strong fleet with enthusiastic sailors and coaches." -- From Nacra Sailing

Please take this notice as valid from the moment received.

Nacra 17 Executive Committee

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See the collection at

The Last Word
We're in the space exploration business, and the outer solar system is a wild, wooly place. We haven't explored it very well. -- Alan Stern

Editorial and letter submissions to

Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see

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