In This Issue
J Class Line Up for Inaugural World Championship in Newport | Eight Skippers From Five Nations: Detroit Cup | Harken International Boat Show Schedule | Yacht once owned by New Zealand's wealthiest man being restored | International Canoe World Championship | Laser Radial Worlds | In Praise of Flexibility | The Challenge of the Nord Stream Race | 2017 Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards nomination period open | 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

J Class Line Up for Inaugural World Championship in Newport
Photo by Carlo Borlenghi, Click on image for photo gallery.

Inaugural World Championship In the long and storied history of the J Class, Newport Rhode Island is a very special place. It was when the event moved from New York City to Narrangansett Bay for the 1930 regatta that the America's Cup was first raced for the very first time in J Class yachts. The Vanderbilt syndicate's Enterprise prevailed against Shamrock V. Harold S Vanderbilt won again in the colours of the New York Yacht Club on Rainbow in 1934 and then once more in 1937, winning 4-0 on the mighty Ranger.

Those three America's Cups in Newport reflected the J Class in its pomp before it was superseded in 1958 by the 12 Metre which raced eight subsequent editions off Newport.

An exciting new chapter in the history of the J Class and its colourful association with Newport and with the passionate hosts and organisers, the New York Yacht Club, will be written over coming days when a record fleet of six J Class yachts will compete for the very first J Class World Championship.

The class' recent incorporation as a member group of the International Maxi Class Association allows the J Class yachts to compete for the World title - as ratified by World Sailing - for the first time ever.

Crews of the six yachts - Velsheda (1933), Ranger (2003), Hanuman (2009), Lionheart (2010), Topaz (2015) and Svea (2017) - have been training on the Bay over recent days, building up to Monday's official Practice Race before racing starts Tuesday.

A flexible programme of five days of racing - three of windward-leeward contests, usually two per day, and two days of Navigator Races, middle distance coastal races using a variety of fixed navigation marks - should prove a fitting challenge. Forecasters suggest normal sea breeze conditions for the opening days, some stronger winds midweek tapering to lighter airs for the final races. The choice of racing format for each day will be decided the previous evening.

The J Class World Championship wasofficially opened this Monday evening at a reception at the New York Yacht Club's Newport Harbour Court hosted by the NYYC and Rolex.

Eight Skippers From Five Nations
Detroit, Michigan, USA: Competitive international sailing returns to the Detroit River this year in Bayview Yacht Club's 10th Anniversary Detroit Cup, the second stage of the three-event USA GRAND SLAM series. Eight skippers and their crews representing five nations will be competing over August 24-27th on equally-matched Ultimate 20 sportboats. Their competitive format of match race sailing that represents one of the most exciting and spectator-friendly forms of the sport.

This year's Detroit Cup skippers include the returning 2016 champion Harry Price and his DownUnder Racing team from Sydney, Australia, racing with Murray Jones and Cameron Seagreen. This team's meteoric rise through the rankings to their current position as 6th in the world is a remarkable feat, given Price's young age of 21 years old. His most recent major victory was earlier this month in Newport Beach, California where he won the Youth Match Racing World Championship.

From the other side of Australia in Perth comes Will Boulden and his Performance Sprint Sports team of Josh Whijohn and Andrew Briggs. This team has reached the Finals in 12 major international events, and has a current world ranking of 18th.

Andrei Nikolaev from Russia was once ranked 23rd in the world over a decade ago, and after a long hiatus and a rebuild of his match racing prowess in the last three years, he has reached a rank of 49th in the world with his family crew of Aleksei Nikolaev and Elena Nikolaev. Organizers at Bayview YC are pleased to welcome the Nikolaev's as only the second-ever Russian-based team to compete at Detroit Cup.

Round Robin racing starts on Thursday, August 24th, and will proceed until the Semi-Finals and Finals on Sunday, August 27th. Results will be posted online at, as well as on the event website.

Winning Skippers, Detroit Cup:

2016 - Harry Price (AUS)
2015 - Sam Gilmour (AUS)
2014 - Pierre-Antoine Morvan (FRA)
2013 - David Gilmour (AUS)
2012 - Josh Junior (NZL)
2011 - Jordan Reece (AUS)
2010 - Dave Perry (USA)
2009 - Anna Tunicliffe (USA)
2008 - Simon Minoprio (NZL)

Harken International Boat Show Schedule
Harken Harken is gearing up for the upcoming boat show season. We will be presenting new and updated products designed to make every moment you spend on the water a great one. Some of our fall and winter shows include:

- Southampton International Boat Show, 15 - 24 September, 2017
- Grand Pavois - La Rochelle, 27 September - 02 October, 2017
- Monaco Yacht Show, 27 - 30 September, 2017
- Hanseboot Hamburg International Boat Show, 28 October - 05 November, 2017
- METS, 14 - 16 November, 2017
- Nautic - Salon Nautique Paris, 2 - 10 December, 2017
- Toronto International Boat Show, 12 - 21 January, 2018
- Vancouver International Boat Show, 17 - 21 January, 2018
- Helsinki International Boat Show, 09 - 18 February, 2018
- Wind and Water Warsaw Boat Show, 15 - 19 March 2018

Come to a show near you. Ask a Harken representative to see what's new including our new Element line of forged aluminum blocks. Harken...Element...At The Front this season.

Yacht once owned by New Zealand's wealthiest man being restored
Click on image to enlarge.

Ariki Andrew Barnes, a keen sailor, spotted Ariki in late 2016 and decided to restore her.

A historic Auckland racing yacht is being restored to her former glory after years of being left to rot in the Hauraki Gulf.

The 113-year-old Ariki, known for being the fastest yacht in Auckland from 1904 to 1938, had been out of service for nearly a decade when a Waiheke couple spotted her at Bayswater Marina on the North Shore in 2016.

Waiheke residents Charlotte Lockhart and Andrew Barnes purchased the abandoned yacht in December 2016 and have spent the past four months restoring her.

Ariki was 95 per cent water-logged and rotten in places, Lockhart said.

"But, Ariki was too special for New Zealand's nautical history to let her turn into rubble," Lockhart said.

For more than 30 years Ariki dominated first class Auckland yacht racing until the appearance of the yacht Ranger in 1938.

Ariki also passed through the hands of many iconic New Zealanders including Alfred Nathan from LD Nathan & Company who set up some of New Zealand's biggest retail stores such as Woolworths and the Goodfellow family, once the richest family in New Zealand.

Ariki, which means chief or leader in te reo Maori, was built in Auckland in 1904 by the Logan Brothers for Charles Horton of the Horton publishing family as a combined racing and cruising yacht.

Ariki is 17 meters long and features a spoon-bowed and counter-stern with her hull planked in copper-fastened kauri.

When completed, Ariki will be moored at the Maritime Museum in Auckland so the public can visit her. -- Shani Williams in

International Canoe World Championship
Pwllheli Sailing Club, Wales, UK: Wales is home to a strong IC fleet including 3 times world champion Robin Wood.

We are fortunate to have the championships hosted at the newly built Plas Heli, a world class sailing facility that hosted the Fireball and 29er World championships in 2015, and ran the successful Europa Cup and UK championships this summer.

Sailing will take place in Tremadog Bay which provides fantastic sailing conditions with limited tidal currents and steady winds just a short sail from the shore, with the backdrop of Snowdonia - a National Park.

Second day of racing for the 2017 International Canoe Worlds at Pwllheli, and Chris Maas of the USA stays top of the leaderboard after two more races.

Chris Maas from the Lopez Sound SC won the first race of the day, finishing ahead of Alistair Warren with Gareth Caldwell taking third.

In the second race (R4) Willy Clark of the USA, who missed the first day's racing, was the winner ahead of Robin Wood with Maas in third.

Overall Maas leads by four points from Wood with Caldwell another five points back in third. -- Gerald New,

Top five, new rules class:
1. Chris Maas, USA, 7 points
2. Robin Wood , GBR, 11
3. Gareth Caldwel, GBR, 17
4. Alistair Warren, GBR, 20
5. Mike Fenwick, GBR, 28

Top five, asymmetric class:
1. Stephen Bowen, GBR, 5 points
2. Andy Gordon, GBR, 8
3. Phil Allen, GBR, 12
4. John Robson, GBR, 15
5. Ben Rogers, GBR, 23

Laser Radial Worlds
Medemblik, Netherlands: The first day of racing for the Radial World Championships at Medemblik was delayed due to light winds.

After two races for the women, Kim Pletikos (3,2) of Slovinia tops the leaderboard with five points.

The 100 competitors raced in two flights with race wins going to Brenda Bowskill (1,16) CAN and Isebella Bertold (1,25) CAN in the first races, and to Monika Mikkola (15,1) FIN and Isebella Maegli (15,1) GUA in the second.

For the men two races were completed. -- Gerald New,

Top five women after two races:
1. Kim Pletikos, SLO, 5 points
2. Evi Van Acker, BEL, 7
3. Svenja Weger, GER, 10
4. Dolores Moreira Fraschini, URU, 12
5. Maria Erdi, HUN, 12

Top five men after two races:
1. Andrew Godoy, BRA, 5 points
2. Alfonso Fernandez, ESP, 8
3. Daniil Krutskikh, RUS, 13
4. Marco Villani, ITA, 24
5. Axel Rahm, SWE, 25

In Praise of Flexibility
Seahorse Is there now the critical mass needed to get a bit more ambitious with some new formats for international offshore events?

In October 2008 I wrote on the TP52 Class website a news item about the long coastal race of the 2008 TP52 World Championship, at the time perfectly hosted by the Calero family and sailed from their marina Puerto Calero in Lanzarote. The title of the report was: FUN, FUN, FUN, 53nm in 4 hours 35 minutes! The crews and boats had a blast, I quote: 'After yesterday's short coastal race, the 14-strong TP52 fleet sailed the long one, approximately 53nm, in well under 5 hours under conditions that offered accidents, failures, disqualifications and lots of emotion. The northern breeze blew with an intensity of 20 to 25 knots throughout the race and gusts reached 35 knots on the western coast of the island.'

We were all pretty tired after the race, whether sailor or organiser, but not that exhausted not to have a beer or two at the event's social area. It was a fleet full of big names - many are still racing in the class today, like Vasco Vascotto and Terry Hutchinson. Others moved on or pay us occasional visits, like Russell Coutts, Dean Barker, Paul Cayard and Jochen Schümann. Wonderful memories drift by when I see owner's names like King Harald, Pedro Mendonça, John Cook, Torbjorn Tornqvist, José Cusi…

Ten years later much has changed and for sure the boats are a lot faster now but I cannot imagine I will write a race commentary again under the same header. Simply announcing a 53-mile race would cost me my job and setting off towards 3m waves in a breeze peaking at 35kt would label me close to insane. Yet 10 years ago I was just describing the mood after the race: Fun, Fun, Fun.

Rob Weiland's full editorial in the August issue of Seahorse:

The Challenge of the Nord Stream Race
Some young, talented sailors are about to undergo one of the biggest challenges of their lives as they set sail in the 1,000 nautical mile offshore race, the Nord Stream Race this Saturday.

While all the competitors taking part in the race are expert sailors in some form of the sport, many of them are completely new to sailing out of sight of land and concentrating for hours and days at a time. The five teams are made up of the five championship winning clubs who won the 2016 edition of their respective National Sailing Leagues.

The National Sailing League racing is a series of short, sharp 10-minute windward-leeward races held in identical J/70 sportsboats. Now it is up to these same sailors to learn the ropes on the much bigger and much powerful ClubSwan 50 high-performance yachts that will contest the Nord Stream Race, a passage through the Baltic Sea which starts on 26 August from Kiel in Northern Germany. From there it's a stage race to Copenhagen, Stockholm, Helsinki and the finish in St Petersburg in Russia, where the fleet is expected to arrive on 6 September.

The five competing yacht clubs are the Deutscher Touring Yacht-Club from Germany, Frederikshavn Sejlklub from Denmark, Cape Crow Yacht Club from Sweden, Nylandska Jaktklubben from Finland and Lord of the Sail - Europe from Russia. Each of the five clubs is sending a crew with ten of their best sailors. -- Andy Rice

2017 Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards nomination period open
World Sailing is inviting nominations for the 2017 Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards.

There are two categories - male and female - and sailors nominated may represent any discipline of the sport.

Nominations can be made by anyone but the sailor (or crew). Those nominated for the 2017 Award must have performed an "outstanding achievement in the sport of sailing between 19 September 2016 and 31 August 2017".

Click here to nominate a sailor (or crew) for the 2017 Rolex World Sailor of the Year.

Nominations must be received by World Sailing no later than 19.00 UTC on Friday 1 September 2017.

World Sailing will draw up a shortlist of nominations with the highest and most inspirational achievers going on to become the 2017 Rolex World Sailor of the Year Nominees.

The winners will be announced on Tuesday 7 November 2017 at the World Sailing Awards Ceremony in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

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