In This Issue
Prince de Bretagne dismasts | Anglo-Spanish duo retake lead as Doldrums fray nerves | Where Sailing Comes First but the Rum is a Close Second? | RS Venture Connect Para Sailing Electronics wins Overall DAME Award | World Sailing's Annual General Meeting | Lightning Championships come to Ecuador | Wight Vodka Best Yachting Bar Competition | Maxi starts now open to yachts up to 115ft | Plastics found in stomachs of deepest sea creatures | Countdown on to Sundance Marine Melbourne Osaka Cup 2018 | 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

Prince de Bretagne dismasts
At 18:15 UTC, Maxi80 Prince de Bretagne dismasted just 93 miles from the finish line of the Transat Jacques Vabre in Salvador de Bahia. The 80ft trimaran, Prince de Bretagne was sailing off Palame, in north-east Brazil near the end of the 4,350-mile race from Le Havre in Normandy, France.

The Transat Jacques Vabre race office and the team supporting the two skippers, Lionel Lemonchois and Bernard Stamm, are assessing what needs to be done because the boat is only 18 miles from the coast and drifting at 0.9 knots, pushed by the easterly trade wind.


A Brazilian military boat, the Guaratuba (46 metres long and with all the necessary equipment towing) has just left the Bay of All Saints in Salvador de Bahia to go and meet the dismasted Maxi80 Prince de Bretagne. The Guaratuba should arrive in the area within 5 hours.

The dismasting of Maxi80 Prince of Brittany occurred today (Wednesday) at 18:15 (UTC), 93 miles from the finish of the Transat Jacques Vabre in Salvador de Bahia. Prince de Bretagne was sailing off Palame, in north-east Brazil near the end of the 4,350-mile race from Le Havre in Normandy, France.

The dismasting, 18 miles from the coast, was caused by a ruptured backstay. Lionel Lemonchois and Bernard Stamm report no apparent cause as they were sailing on a calm sea in about 15 knots of wind. The mast fell gently, causing neither injury nor breakage, before splitting in two. The two sailors were able to recover everything (boom, spar etc.). They are currently trying to curb the drift of the boat, the direction of the easterly tradewind is however still causing it to drift at 0.9 knots. Conditions in the area: 12 knots of wind and less than one-metre waves.

The two sailors from Prince de Bretagne, who have no engine power following the failure of their generator a few days ago, are currently adrift.

Anglo-Spanish duo retake lead as Doldrums fray nerves
As with Sodebo Ultim's victory yesterday, the Anglo-Spanish duo of Phil Sharp and Pablo Santurde on Imerys Clean Energy are also showing in the Class40 that you do not need the biggest budget or the latest boat to be the leader.

With 60 per cent of the race complete, Sharp and Santurde, despite their communication problems and disrupted weather files, do not seem to be giving anything away to the theoretically faster latest generation French boats alongside them.

If the finish for the two Ultime in Salvador de Bahia yesterday was one of the closest in the history of the race - 1 hour 47 minutes and 57 seconds - the other three fleets battling it out in the Atlantic could deliver even more nail-biting finishes.

The Multi50 has seen a stunning reversal at the front in the last 48 hours, the Imoca leader may yet suffer in Doldrums too and the podium battle is intensifying behind them. But nothing tops the Class40.

It was close yesterday, but this afternoon there was just 3.8 miles between the front three at 15:00 UTC. Sharp and Santurde (Imerys Clean Energy) took the lead back last night (Monday) from V and B, with Aina Enfance et Avenir edging into second.

There is just 22 miles of lateral separation between them, with Imerys Clean Energy on the west and V and B on the east. Aina Enfance et Avenir look like they're just 4 miles east of Imerys Clean Energy; have you seen them yet, Phil?

Technical stop: Esprit Scout (Class40) is still on a technical stop in Tenerife (Canary Islands) with delamination of their hull on the port bow. They will relaminate in the boatyard tomorrow morning and hope to leave tomorrow morning.

Places at 14/11/17 - 16h06

1. Imerys Clean Energy
2. Aina Enfance & Avenir
3. V and B

1. Arkema
2. FenetreA - Mix Buffet
3. Reaute Chocolat

1. St Michel - Virbac
2. SMA

1. Sodebo Ultim' (finished)
2. Maxi Edmond de Rothschild (finished)
3. Prince de Bretagne

Where Sailing Comes First but the Rum is a Close Second?
Antigua Sailing Week Big warm seas, consistent trade winds, challenging round the buoys racing and the best shoreside parties in the Caribbean sum up the phenomenon that is Antigua Sailing Week. Preceded by an optional race, the Peters & May Round Antigua Race featuring 52 nm of perfect pre-ASW tune up for new teams, followed by five days of racing off Antigua's south coast and interrupted by a beach day, this is a regatta not to miss.

Classes include Big Boat, Racing, Sport Boat, Cruising, Multihull, Bareboat and Club Class. Daily prize givings at Antigua Yacht Club are legendary as is the final awards party hosted in historic UNESCO-accredited Nelson's Dockyard.

Bragging rights, the best silverware and a photo op with the Queen's representative, the Governor General mean you get the best of all worlds - professionally run race management, incredible history and Caribbean beaches, parties and English Harbour Rum.

Mix that with a Fever-Tree ginger beer and you have the Perfect Storm.

RS Venture Connect Para Sailing Electronics wins Overall DAME Award
The DAME Design Award is the largest marine competition of its kind, anywhere in the world. It focuses attention on the art and science of design in all aspects, from styling, functionality, and innovation, through to ease of implementation, practicality of use - and even packaging. Now in its 27th year, METSTRADE has continued to support and build this competition to highlight the critical role of design in retaining today's boat buyers and attracting the next generation.

Birgit Schnaase, Chairwoman of the Jury, presented the prestigious DAME Award 2017 of the METSTRADE Show to Scanstrut for its RS Venture Connect Conversion Kit.

Working in conjunction with Scanstrut and electronics expert para sailor Tom Harper, RS Sailing's technical team have developed the equipment to provide simple installation, beautifully responsive electric ram steering via either joystick or sip/puff controls and with electronic mainsheet control a further option.

The electronic control equipment allows the RS Venture Connect to be handled by sailors with virtually any disability and builds on the boat's remarkable Plug & Play equipment functionality. All para sailing adaptions, including twin side-by-side seats, joystick steering and control-lines console can be added or removed from the boat as required, meaning the same boat can be set up to suit everyone and used in all areas of a centre's programme.

The rapid configuration versatility of the RS Venture Connect keelboat should broaden the availability of para sailing at centres around the world. The same boat can be used in everything from junior programmes to high disability para training and racing, spreading the investment cost and making purchase more easily justifiable. It makes the pathway from entry-level to para-competition significantly more attainable.

World Sailing have very recently voted to include the RS Venture Connect in its para programme and more information about this will be announced very soon.

Full list of winners:

World Sailing's Annual General Meeting
World Sailing's Annual General Meeting (AGM) concluded the 2017 Annual Conference in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico on Sunday 12 November.

The Annual General Meeting brought World Sailing's Member National Authorities together to receive reports, review membership and ratify decisions made earlier in the Conference.

World Sailing's Council made key decisions on 10 and 11 November ranging from the approval of an eSailing World Championships, an Offshore World Championships and Keelboat World Championships, through to approval of the format of the 2020 Olympic Sailing Competition.

Click below to view video reports, with decisions made, from World Sailing's Council:

Friday 10 November

Saturday 11 November

Members at the AGM ratified the regulatory decisions of World Sailing's Council and these will now be implemented, impacting sailors from the grassroots to the elite level of the sport.

The Bermudan Tourism Authority put forward a bid for Bermuda to host the 2019 edition of the World Sailing Annual Conference. Following a vote by the members, this was approved.

The next meetings of World Sailing will be held from 12-15 May 2018 in London, Great Britain. Sarasota, USA will host the Annual Conference from 27 October to 4 November 2018.

Lightning Championships come to Ecuador
The International Lightning Class will be holding its South American, International Masters, and World Championships this month in Salinas, Ecuador. The South Americans and International Master World Championships will be occurring concurrently (Nov. 17-20) with the World Championship to follow (Nov. 21-24).

All three championships will be hotly contested, with a multitude of past class and other international champions vying for the three titles. Salinas lies roughly on the equator and should provide a level playing field for the championships, with moderate breeze and temperatures forecasted for the entire event.

The South Americans, an open regatta, will see competitors from 11 nations squaring off in what is both a tune-up regatta for the World Championship and an important event for Pan-American qualification for a number of South American nations.

Reigning North American Champion and Olympic bronze medalist Javier Conte is a favorite, along with reigning Snipe World Champion Raul Rios of Puerto Rico. American Ched Proctor and 5-time Lightning World Champion Tito Gonzalez will also provide stark competition.

Wight Vodka Best Yachting Bar Competition
Wight Vodka In support of SailAid UK

Today's favored bar, a new one for our competition:

Name of the bar Le Grotte, Porto Maurizio, Imperia, Italy

Here's what makes it so great...

Americas Cup and Rugby on the TV, All day breakfast (although not all day!!) Always a friendly welcome from Graziano and crew.

Located between Monaco and Genoa... it serves Guinness and Cider and opened early for the America's Cup in Bermuda.

And today's vodka recipe:

Sgroppino Italian Cocktail

1 cup chilled Prosecco
2 tablespoons chilled Wight Vodka
1/3 cup frozen lemon sorbet
1/4 teaspoon chopped fresh mint leaves

Pour the Prosecco and vodka into 2 Champagne flutes, dividing equally. Spoon a scoop of sorbet into each flute. Sprinkle with mint and serve immediately.

Sip, enjoy... then

1. Donate to help the sailing communities of the Caribbean recover. You don't need to buy that new winter jacket. Wear an old one this year... your mates in the BVIs and elsewhere need help. GO to

2. Send us YOUR favorite yachting bar. Two more weeks to send, then we vote for best in the Caribbean, best elsewhere.

Maxi starts now open to yachts up to 115ft
At the IMA Annual General Meeting, held during the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup in September, a motion was supported to allow events to have combined starts for Maxi yachts and Supermaxi yachts up to 115ft.

"The IMA has identified that there is a new generation of Maxi yachts in the 100-115ft size range, such as the 108ft Win Win and the Baltic 112 Nilaya, the new Swan 115s, etc. These have the manoeuvrability of more race-oriented Maxis compared with conventional Supermaxis," explained IMA Secretary General Andrew McIrvine.

The new rule allows owners of Super Maxis between 100 and 115ft the choice of competing with Maxi yachts, following a trend in offshore racing to invite yachts larger than 100ft to join offshore classics, such as the Rolex Fastnet Race. This will allow event organisers to cater better for more race-orientated Maxi yachts of up to 115ft, as well as for the less racing-orientated Supermaxis, in terms of both race courses and rules, to the benefit of both.

Longer term, this allows for a higher hull length limit for the Maxi fleet racing using the conventional Racing Rules of Sailing (RRS). Supermaxis can use a different set of racing rules (RRS Appendix SY), aimed at minimising the risk of contact between the yachts and creating race courses specifically for them. -- James Boyd

Maxi class size remain:
Mini Maxi - 18.29-24.08m (60-79ft)
Maxi - 24.09-30.51m (79-100ft)
Super Maxi - 30.51+m (100+ft) - no upper limit.

Plastics found in stomachs of deepest sea creatures
Animals from the deepest places on Earth have been found with plastic in their stomachs, confirming fears that manmade fibres have contaminated the most remote places on the planet.

The study, led by academics at Newcastle University, found animals from trenches across the Pacific Ocean were contaminated with fibres that probably originated from plastic bottles, packaging and synthetic clothes.

Dr Alan Jamieson, who led the study, said the findings were startling and proved that nowhere on the planet was free from plastics pollution.

"There is now no doubt that plastics pollution is so pervasive that nowhere - no matter how remote - is immune," he said.

Evidence of the scale of plastic pollution has been growing in recent months. Earlier this year scientists found plastic in 83% of global tapwater samples, while other studies have found plastic in rock salt and fish.

Humans have produced an estimated 8.3bn tonnes of plastic since the 1950s and scientists said it risked near permanent contamination of the planet.

Jamieson said underlined the need for swift and meaningful action.

Countdown on to Sundance Marine Melbourne Osaka Cup 2018
The countdown is on and, momentum and tension are building as the 29 boats taking part in the Sundance Marine Melbourne Osaka Cup 2018 continue to arrive in Melbourne, Australia ahead of the first start date.

Conducted by Sandringham Yacht Club (SYC), the Ocean Racing Club of Victoria (ORCV) and Japan's Hokko Yacht Club (OHYC), the Melbourne Osaka Double-Handed Yacht Race Limited is the organising authority for this double-handed race is held every four years. At 5,500 nautical miles, is Australia's longest ocean race and one of the only south- north long distance races in the world.

To start off Portsea Pier, the race has a starting window, commencing on 18 March 2018, with the main start on Sunday, 25 March and a third start for the faster boats on 1 April. Entries have come from Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia, Queensland, NSW, Tasmania, Hong Kong and Japan.

Among the entries are four boats using the 2017 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race as a shakedown: Dare Devil (Sibby Ilzhofer/Jon Sayer), Allegro (Adrian Lewis/Glenn Scheen) and Mister Lucky (Mark Hipgrave/Rohan Wood) and Jazz Player (Matt Lawrence/Matt Setton).

Lawrence and Setton, enduring sailing partners, are new to the Melbourne-Osaka, but they did contest the two-handed Melbourne Vanuatu Race in 2014, so know what is in store.

An initiative of the City and Port of Osaka and the Port of Melbourne to mark the 125th anniversary of the founding of the port of Osaka, the Melbourne Osaka Cup was inaugurated in 1987 and started on 21 March. -- Di Pearson, SMMOC media

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 Geoff Appleton: It was good to hear about Ken's awards well deserved. Two major things that were not mentioned that he set up were the RYA sail measurers system this came about as a part of the World Sailing template for class rules and the equipment rules. This has been used by other countries. The other was the in house measurement he championed. He also did a tremendous amount of work on the Common Market CE of pleasure boats.

Featured Brokerage
Raceboats Only 2010 Davidson Custom 70. 850000 EUR. Located in East Coast, Italy

Designed by Laurie Davidson, this Custom 70 (Mini Maxi) is a true performer in light breeze due to her narrow waterline and super quick in breeze. Clean and tidy deck layout and bright and airy interior.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Ben Cooper
+44 (0) 1590 679222


Raceboats Only 2017 Ker 33 - New Build. 189,000 USD. Located in China.

The first dual-purpose cruiser/racer from the McConaghy/Ker partnership. Huge promise whilst on the race track as usual, but some proper interior comfort.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Sam Pearson - Ancasta Port Hamble


Raceboats Only K36 - Samurai

Samurai is the image of this boat. A Samurai traditionally has been a person who serves a well respected leader and has “Busido” spirit meaning they have the drive to fight with every effort and dedication to the best of their ability and skill.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

+81 (0) 46 884 4141
+81 (0) 46 884 4142

See the collection at

The Last Word
If men were angels, no government would be necessary. -- James Madison

Editorial and letter submissions to

Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see

Search the Archives

Phoca Gallery Search
Search - Categories
Search - Content
Search - News Feeds
Search - Web Links

Our Partners

Seahorse Magazine

Wight Vodka

Robline Ropes


Ocean Safety

Yacht Club Monaco

St Thomas YC

Grenada Sailing Week

Antigua Sailing Week