In This Issue
Mini Transat Course Change | Clipper Round The World Yacht Race Departs South Africa | Clipper Round The World Yacht Race Team Safely Evacuated After Running Aground Near Cape Town | Knots V Splicing | World Sailing Awards one week away | Virtual marks innovation for Sydney Short Ocean Racing Championship | Cauliflowers to (very fast) catamarans | 18ft Skiffs Spring Championship, Race 4 | 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

Mini Transat Course Change
Midway between the Bahamas and the Azores, a tropical wave is taking shape as an active storm formation looms. For the time being, the associated minimum low pressure is not likely to prove dangerous, however the water temperature, which is exceptionally warm for this time of year, is conditioned by a high degree of instability. As such, ultimately, the formation of a tropical storm is a plausible hypothesis.

Wishing to avoid taking the risk of sending the fleet of 6.50m boats into winds in excess of 45 knots and wild seas, Denis Hugues, in agreement with the organiser, has decided to create a compulsory gate between the islands of Santo Antao, to the north and Sao Vicente to the south.

In terms of distance, this equates to a detour of around 200 miles in relation to the direct route, or one long extra day to make Martinique. On the upside comes the guarantee that everyone will be sufficiently far away from the potential centre of the tropical low. In any case, the passage along the channel between the two islands may herald further measures to be imposed upon the Mini sailors should the weather situation deteriorate.

Second stage departure is set for Wednesday November 1 at 14hr.

Clipper Round The World Yacht Race Departs South Africa
Click on image to enlarge.

The third stage of the Clipper 2017-18 Race, officially known as Race 3: The Dell Latitude Rugged Race, got underway today from Cape Town for its highly anticipated 4,754nm Southern Ocean sleigh ride towards Fremantle, Australia.

The race officially got underway at 1200 UTC (1400 local time) in light and variable conditions.

First to cross the start line, ahead of a triangular course in Table Bay, was Capetonian Dale Smyth's Dare To Lead team, closely followed by Visit Seattle, led by youngest ever Clipper Race Skipper Nikki Henderson, and, Skippered by Conall Morrison from Derry-Londonderry.

Sanya Serenity Coast was first to the next mark with its kite up, followed by Greenings, Unicef and As the fleet headed out of Table Bay, Sanya Serenity Coast continued to lead the rest of the teams who were tested by fluky winds swinging between the north and west.

Teams are expected to arrive into Fremantle, Western Australia, between 21- 25 November.

Following a stopover there, they will depart on 2 December for Sydney, where they will once again take on the bluewater classic Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race between Christmas and New Year. After a short stop in Hobart, the race continues north up the east coast to Airlie Beach in the heart of the picturesque Whitsunday Islands which mark the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, which will tie up Leg 4, the All-Australian Leg.

Clipper Round The World Yacht Race Team Safely Evacuated After Running Aground Near Cape Town
The crew of Clipper Round the World Yacht Race team, Greenings (CV24), have been safely evacuated after running aground on the western side of Cape Peninsula, which sits roughly halfway between Cape Town and Cape Point during Leg 3 of the eight-leg global sailing race.

The Clipper 70 yacht, which has already circumnavigated the world twice before, run aground at approximately 2140 UTC (2340 local time) on Tuesday 31 October after departing Cape Town earlier in the day.

The Skipper and all 17 crew members are safe and well and there were no injuries reported on board but all were evacuated on to rescue boats provided by the NSRI (National Sea Rescue Institute) for precaution to return to shore at Hout Bay. The safety of the Skipper and crew are paramount, so all measures that have taken place have been preventative.

Clipper Race Director, Mark Light, and Chairman, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, plus members of the Maintenance Team have remained in constant contact with the Skipper and with the rescue services. After initially being informed of the grounding another of the twelve teams, Unicef, as the closest vessel, was asked to standby to assist but, as the situation is now under full control, Unicef has since been instructed to stand down and continue racing.

A full investigation will take place and further updates will be provided at

Knots V Splicing
Click on image to enlarge.

It is likely anyone who has ever used ropes has learned to tie knots - to create eyes, connect rope to objects or even just for decoration. There's a knot for every application and for many applications there is no better solution than a knot.

However, there are limitations and every time a rope is distorted, strength is lost. A bent rope means that some of the fibres on the outside of the curve will have to carry more load while fibres on the inside may take none of the load. In addition, parts of the rope in a knot may be compressed such that the fibres are unable to move to share the load.

The level of strength reduction can be substantial. In some cases, strength can be reduced by over 50 per cent. However, this will depend on many factors, including the type of knot, how the knot is tied, how neat it is, how the rope is loaded and the design of the rope amongst others. In contrast to these figures, a well spliced rope will typically retain 90 percent of its quoted strength. In fact, some ropes (typically HMPE products) are often quoted with spliced strength, as this is how the product is tested. If strength of termination is critical then a splice is always the preferred choice.

Marlow Ropes is the market leader in Leisure Marine rope and has over 200 years of experience in rope care and advice. This helpful infographic will explain more about the difference in strength between knots and splicing. Look out for Marlow's new Guide to Splicing which will launch this Autumn at the Southampton Boat Show (Stand J300), La Grand Pavois, La Rochelle and METS in Amsterdam.

World Sailing Awards one week away
In just one week (7 November), some of the biggest names in sailing will be celebrated in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico at the inaugural World Sailing Awards evening.

The World Sailing Awards celebrate the outstanding achievements of the world's leading sailors and recognises the exceptional contributions made by those who have devoted their time and effort to further the sport.

Hosted by sailing broadcaster, Alec Wilkinson, and two-time Olympic medallist and two-time Rolex World Sailor of the Year, Sofia Bekatorou, the highlight of the evening will be presentation of the ultimate recognition of excellence - the Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award.

The 2017 World Sailing Awards will also feature the presentation of the Beppe Croce Trophy and President's Development Trophy.

Nominees for the Rolex World Sailor of the Year feature sailors drawn from the America's Cup, Vendee Globe, Windsurfing, Offshore and Olympic Class racing, highlighting the breadth and depth of the sport.

The Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards is the most prestigious award of recognition in the dynamic sport of sailing. Since the awards' inception in 1994, the trophy has proudly accumulated the names of those who have demonstrated unparalleled, performance, endurance and accomplishment in sailing.

The winners will be decided by World Sailing's Member National Authorities, attendees on the night and the voting public.

On Saturday 4 November at 18:00 CST, the public will be invited to cast their vote on for who they believe is the worthiest recipient of the coveted male and female Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award.

Voting will be open for a period of 72 hours and will close just hours before the announcement is made - 18:00 CST on Tuesday 7 November.

The names vying for the coveted Rolex World Sailor of the Year are:

Marit Bouwmeester (NED) - 2017 Laser Radial World Champion
Martine Grael and Kahena Kunze (BRA) - 49erFX World Cup Series Champions
Sarah-Quita Offringa (ARU) - Pro Windsurfers Association World Tour Freestyle and Slalom World Champion
Tara Pacheco (helmed by Fernando Echavarri) (ESP) - Nacra 17 World Cup Series Champions

Glenn Ashby (AUS) - America's Cup winning Skipper
Peter Burling (NZL) - America's Cup winning Helmsman
Thomas Coville (FRA) - Singlehanded Round the World Record holder
Armel Le Cleac'h (FRA) - 2016-2017 Vendee Globe winner

Virtual marks innovation for Sydney Short Ocean Racing Championship
The 40th edition of Middle Harbour Yacht Club's (MHYC) Sydney Short Ocean Racing Championship (SSORC) will be conducted on the weekend of 25-26 November and the Club is introducing innovations for the final day of racing.

Instead of the usual shorter windward/leeward races, the Club is replacing them with a single ocean race, using a hybrid course of laid and virtual marks to provide competitive racing for all types of boats

"It's our intention that the Sunday course will commence with a windward-leeward around laid marks and then to one or more virtual marks," Race Officer Denis Thompson said.

"Using virtual marks enables us to set the course angles and length that will provide good racing on all points of sail without the logistical challenges of laying and retrieving marks in deep water

"While the idea of virtual marks may be new to many of our local sailors, they've been utilised for the Volvo Ocean Race and the Royal Ocean Racing Club in the UK. They have also been used for years to define restricted areas, traffic separation lanes for shipping and as course rounding marks," Thompson ended.

The Sailing Instructions will be published one week before the SSORC so that navigators can plot the course well ahead of race day. On-board navigation systems, or apps for portable devices such as Navionics can be used, provided there is a record of the plotted location of the virtual marks and the GPS track the boat sailed.

The Notice of Race incorporates the World Sailing Appendix WP - Rules for racing around waypoints.

Cauliflowers to (very fast) catamarans
Among the specialists who helped Armel Le Cleac'h to his Vendee Globe victory were some modest engineers working away quietly in Quimperle.

Guelt, the mother company with its roots in the technically demanding food service industry, founded Guelt Nautic 20 years ago to apply its mature expertise in precision metalwork for applications in another challenging environment: performance sailing. The company's skill set, which combines hightechnology engineering and design, mechanics, electrics and automation, allows it to take on a wide variety of demanding projects on all scales and in all settings.

With these skills plus a spirit of innovation, Guelt Nautic has become a regular supplier to teams in the world's top sailing events, the Route du Rhum, Vendee Globe, Volvo, Transat Jacques Vabre and recently the America's Cup.

Guelt's 5,700m2 facility in Quimperle, between the ocean racing centres of Port la ForĂȘt and Lorient, is well established as a prized asset in the delivery of engineering focus and reactivity to many of the most successful skippers and their teams. This gives Guelt a rare opportunity to collaborate closely and frequently with many of the world's most demanding ocean racing projects.

Full story in the November issue of Seahorse:

18ft Skiffs Spring Championship, Race 4
Click on image for photo gallery.

Sydney Harbour: After three weeks of light, flukey conditions, the 18ft Skiff fleet was blessed with a perfect 15-knot Nor'Easter wind for Race 4 of the Australian 18 Footers League Spring Championship on Sydney Harbour today.

The breeze brought with it some great racing and resulted in victory for the experienced De'Longhi crew of Simon Nearn, Grant Rollerson and Brandon Buyink.

De'Longhi's team grabbed the race lead on the second windward leg of the three lap race and withstood a strong challenge from Triple M (James Ward, Adam Gillson, Huon Oliver) to take victory by 18s.

The Kitchen Maker (Stephen Quigley, Tom Quigley, Sam Ellis) was always in or near the lead throughout the race and finished a further 34s back in third place.

Finport Trade Finance (Keagan York) was fourth, followed by (Brett Van Munster), Yandoo (John Winning), Coopers-Rag & Famish Hotel (Bryce Edwards) and backmarker Smeg (Lee Knapton).

After four races in the seven-race Spring Championship, the points lead is shared by three teams Triple M, Coopers-Rag & Famish Hotel and Yandoo on 22 points.

Race 5 of the Spring Championship will be sailed next Sunday.

Industry News
The 58th Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show opens Wednesday and will continue through Sunday at seven locations around the city.

The show covers more than 3 million square feet of space at the Bahia Mar Fort Lauderdale Beach and Yachting Center, the Hall of Fame Marina, the Las Olas Municipal Marina, Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina, Sails Marina, Hyatt Regency Pier 66 Marina and the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center.

The 2017 event will be the first Fort Lauderdale show since the company that produces it, Show Management, was acquired by London-based Informa. In-water and on-land exhibits are sold out. More than 1,500 boats, including 8 miles of yachts, are expected to be on display. More than 100,000 visitors are expected.


After nearly 20 years serving in various positions at Soundings Trade Only, Dean Waite announced he will retire as publisher of the publication Dec. 31.

Waite was named publisher in 2011. Prior to that he ran the business side of operations from 2007 to 2011 as advertising director.

Under his direction, Soundings Trade Only began co-sponsoring trade shows to build the magazine's connections in a wide variety of segments.

The magazine now co-sponsors events that include the International BoatBuilders' Exhibition & Conference, the International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades (better known as ICAST), the International Marina and Boatyard Conference, the Marine Dealer Conference & Expo, the Miami International Boat Show and the International Marine Electronics Conference and Expo - in addition to the USA Pavilion at Metstrade.

Prior to his time at Trade Only, Waite had served as vice president and publisher of daily newspapers owned by the New York Times Co. and Landmark Communications in Florida and Southern California.

Waite also worked for 10 years in the cable television business, where he served as vice president of cable marketing for The Weather Channel, executive director of the Cable Television Administrative and Marketing Society and later as vice president of the Eastern division for The Disney Channel.

Waite will move on to launch a recreational marine consultancy called Waite & Associates LLC, which he says will allow him to keep his "foot in the water" while dialing down his daily expectations as publisher.


Garmin has bought electronic navigational charts and mobile applications company Navionics for an undisclosed sum.

In addition to its boating app, Navionics has developed nautical charts for oceans, rivers, and lakes worldwide.

Many of the charts have been developed with Navionics' proprietary surveys, done both in the field and with remote sensing such as satellite imagery and airborne laser scanners.

"Navionics has long been known as a leading supplier of highly accurate navigational charts and mobile applications for boaters," said Cliff Pemble, Garmin president and CEO. "By combining Navionics' content with Garmin's BlueChart and LakeVu content, we will be able to offer the best available breadth and depth of coverage to our marine customers."

Navionics is headquartered in Viareggio, Italy and employs more than 350 staff globally who will be retained. The Navionics brand will be retained.


The Wall Street Journal reports that Akzo Nobel and its US rival Axalta Coating Systems are considering a possible merger to create a multibillion-dollar coating giant. A source said the talks are at an early stage and could collapse before a deal is reached.

The deal would involve Akzo Nobel spinning off its specialty chemicals business, as it plans to do now, and distributing proceeds to shareholders. A merger of two equals of the two companies would then give the new company added scale for better pricing for raw materials, streamlined operations and new clients.

The story also said that the structure involved in the merger would be critical in winning support from Akzo's shareholders. Some have been concerned that the Amsterdam-based company would seek a major acquisition to protect itself from unwanted suitors.

One of its major shareholders, Elliott Management Corp, earlier this year attempted to force Akzo into sale talks with its rival PPG Industries Inc. The US$28bn takeover attempt failed.

Featured Brokerage
2015 TP52 Provezza.

For Sale TP52 PROVEZZA, 4th place overall 52 Super Series 2017. Design Vrolijk, builder Cookson 2015.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Tim Haynes:

+44 7967386652


Swan 45-001 Kyknos

Swan 45-001 left Finland during the spring of 2002 and within two months was collecting silverware as the overall winner of the 50th Anniversary Giraglia Cup. She still has everything it takes to be competitive in the Swan 45 one-design class and is offered for sale at a very attractive price.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Giorgio Passarella

Tel. +377 97 97 95 07


2006 Club Swan 42 - SOUTHERN. 245000 USD. Located in Newport, RI - USA.

SOUTHERN is an extremely competitive Club Swan 42 having just won the New York Yacht Clup Invitational Cup 2017 and is now for sale and in fantastic condition. She was originally a fresh water boat before moving to the E.Coast for one design racing at the NYYC.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Ben Cooper
+44 (0) 1590 679222

See the collection at

The Last Word
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