Clipper Second Stage to Cape Town Gets Underway | Mini Transat: Knowing how far to push it | Boats to Bridges | 2018 Golden Globe Race moves to Les Sables d'Olonne, France | Star Oktoberpokalen | 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
Clipper Second Stage to Cape Town Gets Underway
Spectators and media flocked to the water for the start of the Clipper 2017-18 Round the World Yacht Race's second stage, to Cape Town, South Africa, following the event's first ever stopover in Punta del Este, Uruguay.
The race bought more than 300 international crew, representing 28 nationalities, drawing thousands of visitors to the region, and high-level dignitaries to Punta del Este.
Uruguay's Tourism Minister, Lilliam Kechichian, commented: "The Clipper Race has been the biggest sailing event to ever visit Uruguay.
"Not only have the international crew members been a huge economic boost to the city in this traditionally quieter pre-summer season, but the event has also given Uruguay an incredible opportunity to demonstrate our fantastic hospitality, and also positioned us firmly on the map alongside top global destinations on the route, such as Cape Town, Sydney, New York and Liverpool, UK.
Getting straight back into the challenge from the start line, the twelve Clipper Race teams officially got underway at 1730 UTC (1430 local) in northwesterly winds gusting over 35 knots under clear sky and warm weather, starting with a round the cans inshore circuit in the Bay of Maldonado.
The South Atlantic is set to provide a strong welcome back to the Clipper Race fleet tonight, with the overnight weather forecast predicting wind speeds in the mid-20s to mid-30s, but with strong gusts, estimated at 50 knots at times.
The Clipper 2017-18 Race fleet is due into Cape Town between 19-22 October and will be berthed at the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront until 31 October.
Mini Transat: Knowing how far to push it
The expected north-easterly wind is now packing a punch. As a result, the Minis are once again making speeds that are more in line with their true potential as they plunge southwards. Though the majority of the fleet has opted to pass between the TSS of Cape Finisterre and the Spanish coast, a few of the skippers have chosen to take the long route, making westing as a possible investment for the future perhaps...
In offshore racing, there are times when you have to bite the bullet and suffer some losses in order to come back stronger and potentially take the win. This is clearly the objective of those sailors who have opted to make headway to the west around the top of the TSS of Cape Finisterre. Andrea Fornaro (Sideral) and doubtless Nolwen Caze (Fee Rêvee) too, are likely to tumble down the rankings the further they distance themselves from the direct route. However, in doing so, they're almost certain to benefit from strong downwind conditions for two days.
The NE'ly breeze currently dictating play is fuelled by a relatively small low located to the SE of Porto. With the wind rotating anticlockwise around the centre of the low pressure system, the solo sailors will have this to contend with whilst they remain to the NW of the low. However, the system is supposed to gradually move offshore. As such, the further out to sea it gets, any boats in the vicinity will logically see the winds progressively shift round to the SE or even due south. By gaining headway to the west, this fate is delayed somewhat. However, will the long detour chosen by Andrea and some of the others be rewarded by much greater speeds and if so, will it ultimately be enough to steal a march on those taking the inside track, who will inevitably be seeking to gain ground to the west themselves the moment they get clear of the TSS?
Ranking at 15:00 UTC
1. Ian Lipinski - Griffon.fr - 895.9 miles from the finish
2. Erwan le Mene - Rousseau Clotures - 10.4 miles behind the leader
3. Aurelien Poisson - TeamWork - 21.7
4. Simon Koster -Eight Cube Sersa - 24.3
5. Arthur Leopold-Leger - Antal XPO - 25.4
1. Remi Aubrun - Alternative Sailing - Constructions du Belon - 920 miles from the finish
2. Yannick Le Clech - Draoulec - 3.7 miles behind the leader
3. Erwan Le Draoulec - Emile Henry - 4.8
4. Clarisse Cremer - TBS - 10.7
5. Ambrogio Beccaria - Alla Grande Ambecco - 17.1
Sustainable development is traditionally defined as something that meets the needs of the present without compromising the needs of the future. Using innovative thinking to advance sustainable practices is core to The Schmidt Family Foundation's 11th Hour Racing programme. One area in which the programme is now involved is the delicate but still largely overlooked issue of the disposal of obsolete leisure craft.
The steady accumulation of end-of-life vessels in coastal communities across the United States and Europe has sparked discussion around a variety of intertwined environmental and economic issues. Currently, the most common destination for these ageing craft is the landfill or worse: abandoned in backyards, boatyards or local waterways. Landfill managers typically use a simple mechanical process to cut and crush the glassfibre mat, polyester resins and ancillary material, subsequently compressing and burying remains within the greater mixture of municipal solid waste.
Based on the established estimates of national end-of-life vessel populations, these traditional processes are already burying millions of metric tons of fibreglass around the world each year. This practice is a mistreatment of usable composite material and is environmentally perilous waste management.
Full article in the October issue of Seahorse: www.seahorsemagazine.com
2018 Golden Globe Race moves to Les Sables d'Olonne, France
The 2018 Golden Globe Race, celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the original event back in 1968/9 which led to the first solo non-stop circumnavigation, will now start from Les Sables d'Olonne France on Sunday July 1st 2018.
Les Sables d'Olonne, which also hosts the start and finish of the 4-yearly Vendee Globe solo non-stop round the world race in Open 60 class yachts, is now a partner in the 2018 Golden Globe Race and will host a 2-week celebration to the origins of solo sailing in the port prior to the start.
The Sables d'Olonne agglomeration, the city and the Vendee partners will be happy to offer the Vendee Globe channel and public support to these adventurers who will take off from Les Sables on July 1, 2018, 50 years after Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, Bernard Moitessier and their companions on the "long route". The Golden Globe Race is also an opportunity for Les Sables d'Olonne to reinforce its popularity with lovers of the sea all around the world.
Prior to this, the entire GGR fleet of traditional long-keeled yachts and their skippers will participate in a special Suhaili Parade of Sail in Falmouth, Cornwall on Thursday June 14 to mark the day that Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, set out to win the original Golden Globe Race 50 years before.
The Golden Globe Race had been planned to start from Plymouth, England, but a two-year search for sponsorship across the UK did not produce a successful outcome and prompted this change of host port.
Over the past year some of the original entrants have inevitably dropped out but those on the Wait List eagerly filled their places. This has left a very strong list of 26 entrants including 6 from France.
It also gives the opportunity for four more to fulfil lifelong dreams of sailing around the world. "The Race is limited to 30 entrants, and since we have received more than 150 enquiries, we don't think it will be long before our list is full again" says race organizer Don McIntyre.
Leif Carlsson organized an amazing event for the Star class this past weekend at Sune Carlssons Batvarv and co hosted by KSSS in Stockholm, Sweden.
The weekend started off on Friday with a great clinic and top notch coaching from Frithjof Kleen. We had about 15 boats out for the clinic and had a few practice races to get everyone tuned up for the following two days of races.
Three races were held Saturday on the waters off of Saltsjobaden, just out side of Stockholm. There were 25 Stars from 5 countries racing in the shifty southeast winds ranging from 5-10 knots. Saturday was really a day for keeping your head out of the boat and capitalizing on the big shifts.
After Saturdays racing Denmark's Bo Selko and Rasmus Knude were leading the event with Jonas Wibom and Fredik Liljegren in second and the current World Champion Eivind Melleby with crew Sven Sorenson in third place.
Sunday we had the more races in the Star class in stronger winds from Saturday. The wind ranged from the southeast at 10-16 knots and relatively flat water. There were still a few shifts to be had out there to create a few passing lanes.
We had very good competition with tight battles all weekend. After Sunday's racing Sweden's Anton Dahlberg with Frithjof Kleen took top honors. In second was the Dutch and German pair of Thomas Alert and Killian Weise. Finishing in third place was the Danish team of Bo Selko and Rasmus Knude.
This was a fantastic regatta and event all around. Not enough can be said about the huge effort that was put in by Leif and the team at Sune Carlssons Batvarv, KSSS, and all of the volunteers that provided the food and drinks.
We are aiming to get the entry list up to 50 boats next year so put it on your calendar and bring your boat for a great time in a beautiful place surrounded by the best class in sailing! -- Danny Cayard
Beneteau CEO Herve Gastinel outlined the French builder's growth projection for the coming year at Cannes
2017 has been heralded as the beginning of a new "phase of conquest" by Beneteau Group CEO Herve Gastinel as he outlined the French builder's growth projection for the coming year in its annual press conference at the Cannes boat show earlier this week.
Gastinel announced 38 new 'novelties' for the 2017/18 season (compared to 29 launched last year) with a record €47m having been spent on product development alone.
As well as new launches across all of its brands, Gastinel also unveiled the builder's new 'Ship Control' - an intuitive 'smart boat' application for monitoring and controlling everything onboard from climate and engines to sound systems, navigation and lighting. The system took two years to develop and is being adapted for use on each of its boat models.
Beneteau's new Gran Turismo 50 that comes in Hardtop and Sportfly versions, is the first to be fitted with the system and is making its debut at Cannes. Other show highlights for the group include the unveiling of the new Lagoon Seventy 8 powercat as well as the Lagoon 40 and 50 sailing cats, a new range of Jeanneau Sun Odysseys, and the Beneteau Figaro, Oceanis 51.1 and 55.1 yachts. It also announced new additions to its smaller Antares and Barracuda model ranges and a new Swift Trawler 35.
Gastinel said sales of sailing monohulls and multihulls were predicted to rise by 1-2% and 5%-plus respectively next year, while powerboats under 30ft were also expected to see decent growth of between 3-5%. Gains in the larger power segment were expected to be potentially more modest; from flat to 3% growth in the highly competitive 30ft-60ft segment and up to 2% sales growth in the 60ft-plus market.
Volvo Car UK's backing of British sailing is set to reach a major milestone with the announcement today that its long-standing partnership with the British Sailing Team and the RYA is to continue through until 2021.
Volvo has been a long-term supporter of the RYA's Racing programmes since 1998 when it first backed the RYA Keelboat Programme, thereafter extending its support to youth sailing in 1999 and having been the vehicle partner to the British Sailing Team since 2009.
Volvo will retain its role as Official Car Partner, providing investment and support across the RYA's Junior, Youth and Olympic Classes Programmes through until March 2021, and marking the 20th anniversary of support for RYA activity in the year that the iconic Volvo Ocean Race returns to British shores.
The continued support to the RYA includes 40 cars which will assist with the perennial logistical challenges of sail training and campaigning, and the need to transport personnel, boats and equipment in comfort, safety and with minimal environmental impact to numerous training and event locations, both in the UK and abroad.
"We look forward to working alongside Volvo over the next four-year cycle, and to supporting a special year for Volvo's sailing association in the UK when the Volvo Ocean Race returns to the UK at its Cardiff stopover in May." said RYA Director of Racing John Derbyshire.
Garmin International was named Manufacturer of the Year for the third consecutive year, an honour given to the most recognised company in the marine electronics field for its support of products in the field, voted on by members of the National Marine Electronics Association (NMEA) in the US.
Garmin also dominated the NMEA's Product of Excellence Awards with eight wins in the following categories: radar, autopilot, multi-function display (MFD), mobile application-aid to navigation, mobile application-utility, fishfinder, AIS, and multimedia entertainment.
The honours were announced at the 2017 NMEA Convention held last week in Bellevue, Washington.
For the second year in a row, Garmin won the MFD category for its GPSMAP 8624, a 24in all-in-one touchscreen chartplotter that boasts the highest screen resolution on the market.
Fusion, a Garmin brand, also received consecutive honours in the multimedia entertainment category, this year for the AV755 Marine Stereo System, a NMEA 2000-certified marine-ready DVD/CD player with Bluetooth connectivity that can be controlled from a compatible MFD.
For five years running, Garmin received the top spot in the autopilot category. The GHP Reactor Hydraulic Autopilot with SmartPump was Garmin's first recreational autopilot system to utilize AHRS technology and boasts usability, installation flexibility and many other features.
Despite a slight dip in visitor attendance, this year's TheYachtMarket.com Southampton Boat Show saw a record number of visitors on the water and "incredible" sales results from exhibitors. Show organiser British Marine Boat Shows said many companies recorded year-on-year increased sales and enquiry leads from the start.
The UK's Discovery Yachts Group, for instance, finished the show with confirmed orders of £3m and estimated orders of £3.5m-£4m. "We've sold boats across all ranges - Discovery Yachts, Southerly Yachts and Bluewater Yachts - to a range of global buyers," says Sean Langdon, Discovery MD.
Held from September 15-24 at Southampon's Mayflower Park, the 10-day event attracted more than 106,000 visitors. This compares to around 109,000 in 2016.
But new attractions persuaded close to 15,000 people to get out on the water - an increase of 50% on previous years, with many experiencing boating for the first time. With hundreds of boats lined up along Europe's largest purpose-built marina, visitors were able to hop on and off a range of vessels of all sizes.
The show welcomed close to 500 exhibitors and almost 20% of those were new to the show. There were 35 world, 12 European, 70 UK and 39 show debuts.
Next year's show, which runs from September 14-23, will celebrate its 50th edition.
The 1851 Trust aims to inspire and engage young people to better futures by providing the education and opportunities for them to become innovators of the future and stewards of the environment.
Since the Trust launched in 2014, we have refined and developed our programmes based on feedback from pupils, stakeholders and educators. We are now proud to provide an impressive range of activities to inspire young people including our three flagship initiatives: BT STEM Crew, the online resource for teachers; hosted school visits to the TECH DECK & Education Centre at Land Rover BAR, and our national multi-activity Roadshow.
We have made significant progress towards achieving our aims over the past academic year; our programmes have engaged with nearly 40,000 pupils and we've built relationships with 663 schools from across the UK. We are pleased with the feedback from teachers and young people on the positive impact that our programmes have on engagement with STEM subjects, enthusiasm for new career opportunities and aspirations for the future.
Download the Trust's 2016/7 Annual Review www.1851trust.org.uk
Spinlock, designers and manufacturers of rope holding equipment and personal safety products for leisure and commercial water users, are celebrating continued growth in 2017 and the expansion of their Cowes-based factory.
The recent installation of new machinery and resultant increase in capacity at their factory is a positive development for the Queen's Award-winning company, who have seen sales exports increase to 25 countries in 2017 and an overall increase in staff of 20% since 2016.
The factory expansion comes during a year that has seen Spinlock work exclusively for Great Britain's America's Cup competitors Land Rover BAR as Official Technical Suppliers creating the bespoke T2 lifejacket worn during their campaign. Spinlock are also Official Supplier to the Volvo Ocean 65 Class for the 2017-18 edition Volvo Ocean Race, including developing a custom lifejacket harness exclusively for the Volvo Ocean Race sailors. 2017 has also seen Spinlock awarded with the Queen's Award for Enterprise: Innovation, with a presentation of the award at the production facility being held in September.
Swan 48-123 E2 is a beautifully presented yacht and currently moored in Chile. Sold to her current owner in 2014, she underwent a refit and maintenance period in Italy before starting her voyage to South America.
"Vineta" is the most competitively priced boat on the market and incorporates an upgraded 3-spreader mast configuration from Southern Spars, which makes her a real bandit on the rating game, as well as unrivalled performance cruiser.
THE Ker 46+ IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER. Based on the original version but turbo charged..... watch this space for info...... Hull #1 sold and sailing
The latest and greatest offering from the Ker/McConaghy partnership is the second generation Ker 46+. Having seen the rapid success for the mk2 Ker 40, it only felt logical to apply this thinking to the 46 as well. With Hull #1 now sold and the boat under construction, it will be hitting the water in early 2017. Weighting almost 750kg less than the original Ker 46 and carrying a more powerful hull form and rig setup, its going to be an IRC and ORC rocketship.
See the RaceboatsOnly.com collection at seahorsemagazine.com/brokerage/
The Last Word
Every man can tell how many goats or sheep he possesses, but not how many friends. -- Marcus Tullius Cicero
Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see www.scuttlebutteurope.com/advertise.html