In This Issue
Wight Vodka Best Yachting Bar: In Support of Sail Aid | Francois Gabart rounds Cape Horn | Fast Running in the Trades | The Perfect Nautical Gift for all Seasons by Latitude Kinsale | UAE 'Ready' to host America's Cup | Flavour of the year | Windy Sail Melbourne International wraps up | Paris 2024 Olympic venue selected for Sailing's 2018 World Cup Series Final | Know when to hold, when to fold | 18ft Skiffs NSW Championship, Race 2 | Over one hundred entries for Phuket King's Cup | 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

Wight Vodka Best Yachting Bar: In Support of Sail Aid
Nominations open now for two awards: Best Caribbean Bar and Best Bar Elsewhere. Send us your bleary memories:

Francois Gabart rounds Cape Horn
Francois Gabart is racking up performances in his attempt to beat the single-handed round the world record. Today, Sunday 3 December 2017, at 13:20 (French time, UTC+1), the skipper of the MACIF trimaran crossed the longitude of Cape Horn, 29 days, 03 hours and 15 minutes after crossing the Ouessant starting line, making this the second best time outright, in the history of sailing, single-handed and with crew combined, since only Francis Joyon and his crew on IDEC Sport achieved a better time last year, of 26 days, 15 hours and 45 minutes.

The MACIF trimaran has improved the reference time between Ouessant (Ushant) and Cape Horn single-handed, held since 2016 by Thomas Coville (31 days, 11 hours and 30 minutes).

This performance is all the more remarkable, since it establishes a new outright record (single-handed and with crew combined) of the south Pacific crossing (Tasmania-Cape Horn) in 7 days 15 hours and 15 minutes*, better than the 7 days, 21 hours, 13 minutes and 31 seconds by IDEC Sport last year (Thomas Coville took 8 days, 18 hours, 28 minutes and 45 seconds). However, the chief goal of this round the world is still to beat the single-handed round the world record by Thomas Coville (49 days, 3 hours, 4 minutes and 28 seconds). To succeed in this, Francois Gabart will need to sail up the Atlantic Ocean in less than 20 days, to get to Ouessant before 23 December.

(* subject to confirmation by the WSSRC)


Fast Running in the Trades
On the ninth day of the RORC Transatlantic Race, twenty teams are now south of the rhumb line with the vast majority enjoying fast running conditions in the northeast trade winds.

Ludde Ingvall's Australian Maxi CQS is under 1000 nautical miles from Camper & Nicholson's Port Louis Marina, 380 miles ahead of the fleet to take Monohull Line Honours and the IMA Transatlantic Trophy.

Eric de Turckheim's French Nivelt-Muratet 54 Teasing Machine is still the provisional leader overall under IRC. However four other teams are also in the hunt for the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy; CQS, Jochen Bovenkamp's Marten 72 Aragon, Teichmann & Thomas Jungblut's German Elliott 52 Outsider, and Canadian Southernwind 96 Sorceress, skippered by Daniel Stump.

CQS has been hitting over 20 knots of boat speed, surfing down Atlantic rollers, but it has not all been plane sailing as their blog shows. "The A2 spinnaker had been up for four days during the RORC Transatlantic Race when a two foot tear appeared during a gybe. A4 hoisted, A2 doused, repaired, repacked and hoisted. Total time 90 minutes. All 15 crew working flat out. Now that's what I call teamwork!"

Teasing Machine is 1475 nautical miles from the finish and is the provisional overall leader. Since Varuna's retirement, the French team has been leading on corrected time but Aragon in particular has been closing the gap. In the last 24 hours Aragon, the holder of the RORC Transatlantic Race Trophy, has shown better speed than Teasing Machine. Sorceress has also picked up the pace, taking a similar line to fellow Maxi Aragon, whilst further south, Outsider is following Teasing Machine's line.

YB Race Tracker:

The Perfect Nautical Gift for all Seasons by Latitude Kinsale
Latitude Kinsale Looking for that special gift that is nautical and unique?

The 3D chart is the perfect Christmas gift that is appreciated for a lifetime! It ticks all of the boxes: it's personal, bespoke, it's art with a difference and it's relevant.

As a shared gift amongst a group/crew or simply a treat for yourself!

Check out the website today, talk to Bobby Nash about your commission.

Any chart any where in the world !

UAE 'Ready' to host America's Cup
The United Arab Emirates is ready to host the 2021 America's Cup but insisted it has no intention of taking the regatta away from New Zealand.

The Herald on Sunday earlier reported Team New Zealand were being wooed by backers in the Middle East prepared to offer up to $116 million should negotiations between the team and the New Zealand Government over a multi-million dollar hosting fee for agreeing to hold the Cup in Auckland remain deadlocked.

A senior official at Emirates airline told Gulf News the UAE would be ready to stage the event if called upon.

TNZ, who reclaimed the Auld Mug by defeating Oracle Team USA in the Cup match in Bermuda in June, is sponsored by Dubai-based Emirates. As defenders, the Kiwis can choose the location of the 36th America's Cup.

The UAE has been linked with hosting the event before - with Dubai and Ras Al Khaimah touted as possible replacements for the 2010 edition.

"From our side, there has been no official talk yet," Boutros Boutros, Emirates Group's Divisional Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications, Marketing and Brand told Gulf News.

"But, of course, the UAE is equipped to host it. With the facilities in the UAE, we can host it any time. Probably if they have some stages they want to host in Dubai, we would welcome that.

Flavour of the year
Seahorse Bigger faster cats is where it's at right now for many designers and builders. But the challenge of persuading three or four luxury cabins to proceed steadily upwind at 15-16kt is not one to be underestimated

The growing popularity of fast luxury catamarans can be easily seen not only at boatshows, but increasingly in harbours and marinas around the world as more people recognise the high value these craft represent in speed, comfort and ease of handling. For designers and builders the challenge is to find the balance between these key features as well as what the market requires in terms of style, utility and cost.

In catamaran design the process is not simple, since there are so many variables to account for: weight and trim, for example, are critical to control, given the narrow hull shapes, and the sail plan must be generous enough for adequate power in light air yet with systems to allow quick and easy depowering when needed. Appendages must also be carefully designed to be effective in all sailing conditions, easily adjustable for performance and safety, and ideally allowing these large yachts to access the shallowest anchorages

At the Hudson Yacht Group builder Paul Hakes, his son James, Elliott Thorne and the design team at Morrelli & Melvin have been successfully exploring these balances for a number of years now with their HH line of catamarans, starting first with the HH66 introduced in 2015, the HH55 introduced in 2016, and now the latest in the line, the new C-foil equipped HH48.

While this newest design incorporates in-house concepts articulated by James and Elliott, size matters and this 48-footer is not simply a scaled-down version of previous larger models. Instead the HH48 represents a new summation of lessons learnt through the design, construction and performance of the two bigger cats appropriate to a boat of this size.

Full story in the December issue of Seahorse:

Windy Sail Melbourne International wraps up
Another day of strong winds for the final day of Sail Melbourne International (29 November to 3 December 2017) meant an early finish to the event with the last day of Invited class racing called off (Sunday, 3 Dec). Olympic classes also finished one day early and wrapped up on Saturday, 2 December with medal winners decided after a three-day race series (29 Nov to 1 December 2017).

It was a challenging week for the race committee with a heavy weather front crossing Melbourne and Victoria, but with the Organising Committee's world class expertise the event wrapped up smoothly.

The stellar Melbourne line-up included the Australian Sailing Team and Australian Olympic medallists with Rio 2016 Olympic champion Tom Burton winning the Laser, Rio 2016 Olympic silver medallists Mat Belcher and Will Ryan the 470 and Rio 2016 silver medallists Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin winning the mixed-multihull Nacra17 on home waters.

With only one day of racing under the belt, it came down to a discretionary decision from race management to award medals to the Invited classes with results standing from Friday, 1 December 2017.

Tentative dates for Sail Melbourne International 2018 out of Royal Brighton Yacht Club are 12 - 16 December 2018.

Olympic Classes Results

Men's One Person Dinghy (Heavyweight) - Finn
1. Jake Lilley, AUS (QLD)
2. Thomas Slingsby, AUS (NSW)
3. Oliver Tweddell, AUS (VIC)

Men's One Person Dinghy - Laser Std
1. Thomas Burton, AUS (NSW)
2. Matthew Wear, AUS (WA)
3. Jeremy O'Connell, AUS (VIC)

1. Mat Belcher | Will Ryan, AUS (QLD)
2. Daichi Takayama | Imamura Kimihiko, JPN
3. Doi Kazuto | Naoya Kumra, JPN

1. Carrie Smith | Jaime Ryan, AUS (WA/QLD)
2. Nia Jerwood | Monique Devries, AUS (WA)
3. Sophie McIntosh | Orla Mulholland Patterson (NSW/WA)

Men's Skiff - 49er
1. David Gimour | Joel Turner, AUS (QLD / WA)
2. Will Phillips | Sam Phillips, AUS (VIC)
3. Judge Ryan | Hans Henken, USA

Women's Skiff - 49erFX
1. Amelia Stabback | Ella Clark, AUS (NSW)
1. Tess Lloyd | Harry Mighell, AUS (VIC)
2. Natasha Bryant | Annie Wilmot, AUS (NSW)

Mixed Multihull - Nacra 17
1. Jason Waterhouse | Lisa Darmanin, AUS (NSW)
2. Paul Darmanin | Lucy Copeland, AUS (NSW)
3. Tayla Rietman | Lachlan White, AUS (VIC)

Windsurfer - RSX
1. Joanna Sterling, AUS (QLD)
2. Alex Halank, AUS (NSW)
3. Harry Walker, AUS (QLD)

Bic Techno
1. William Grimshaw, AUS (VIC)
2. Sam Magarey, AUS (SA)
3. Jude Smale, AUS (VIC)

See all results

Paris 2024 Olympic venue selected for Sailing's 2018 World Cup Series Final
World Sailing's World Cup Series Final in 2018 will head to Marseille, France, the host city for the Paris 2024 Olympic Sailing Competition.

The 2017/2018 World Cup Series commenced in Japan in October. Miami will host the American round in January 2018 followed by Hyeres, France in April.

Marseille will host the final from 3 - 10 June 2018.

World Sailing's Board of Directors conducted a formal review and evaluation of bids received from Tallinn, Estonia as well as Marseille with the French venue awarded the event, subject to the signing of the event contract.

"Once an Olympic venue is announced, sailors are eager to train, race and compete on the waters of the Olympic Sailing Competition," commented World Sailing President Kim Andersen.

"The competition is dependent on the natural environment and sailors have to learn how to read the tidal patterns and wind conditions to best prepare for the Games itself.

"When Marseille hosts the 2018 World Cup Final, we will be more than six years away from the Paris 2024 but this provides the Olympic hopefuls with a world class competition to commence their journey to the Olympic Games.

Know when to hold, when to fold
Stanley Paris has wanted to retrace the route taken by Dodge Morgan, who in 1986 became the first American to sail solo around the globe with no stops. He also wants to beat Morgan's time of 150 days, 6 hours and one minute, which began and finished in Bermuda, and be the oldest to do so.

Paris tried twice in 2014, but equipment issues derailed his attempts in January and December. Paris would always begin from his hometown of St. Augustine, Florida, with the intent to pass Bermuda so as to complete two loops: Bermuda and St Augustine. Now at 80 years old, he was amid his third attempt when onboard problems halted progress at Bermuda.

His plan was to make repairs and start again on December 2 or 3, and while he would not be able to set a non-stop record from St. Augustine to St. Augustine, the remaining two objectives would still be pursued. That was, until he took a long, deep breath of reality to realize this third attempt must stop too. Here is his update:

Sometimes circumstances accumulate to a point to where an unwelcome but wise decision must be made - and right now I am faced with exactly that. The final straw occurred over the last two days when I learned from the Word Sailing Speed Record Council that even a successful restart from Bermuda and back again would not give me the record I seek as the oldest to have solo circumnavigated the globe. By their rules I would be short 346 miles.

Full story:

18ft Skiffs NSW Championship, Race 2
Skiffs Sydney Harbour: The defending champion Smeg team of Lee Knapton, Mike McKensey and Ricky Bridge strengthened their grip on the 2017-2018 NSW 18ft Skiff Championship with their second win of the championship in Race 2 on Sydney Harbour today.

A winning margin of 48s makes the win look decisive but the victory was a long hard battle mixed with some good fortune when two early race leaders faltered at the bottom mark on the first two laps of the course.

Smeg took full advantage to cross the line ahead of Finport Trade Finance (Keagan York, Angus Williams, Adam Minter) with The Kitchen Maker (Scott Babbage, Sam Ellis, Phil Marshall) a further 1m38s back in thirs place.

The young Noakes Youth team, led by Kirk Mitchell, were again impressive in their first 18ft Skiff season and finished fourth, ahead of Asko Appliances (James Dorron) and Yandoo (John Winning)

Smeg leads the championship on 2 points, followed by The Kitchen Maker on six points, Yandoo and Noakes Youth, both on 10, Rag & Famish Hotel (Bryce Edwards) on 13 and Triple M (James Ward) on 14.

De'Longhi (Simon Nearn) and Triple M won the start but an early tack by the Asko Appliances team saw the skiff grab the lead when their move proved decisive as the breeze shifted a little to the east of north east. -- Frank Quealey

Race 3 of the NSW Championship will be sailed next Sunday (10 December).

Over one hundred entries for Phuket King's Cup
Bangkok/Phuket: The Opening Ceremony of the 2017 Phuket King's Cup Regatta hosted at Beyond Resort Kata hoists the flag on this year's race and honors a strong fleet of entries. Over 100 keelboats, multihulls and dinghies from around the world have joined the 31st Anniversary race. The '17 Regatta reaffirms the reputation of Phuket as a sports and marine tourism paradise, and also contributes to the future of sailing in Thailand. This year's race has a particularly strong focus on growing the sport of Youth Sailing in Thailand and building a great sailing future for the country.

The Phuket King's Cup Regatta welcomes the return of some familiar teams and boats which have already proven their pace, pedigree and performance in regattas past. Ray Roberts' Team Hollywood and Sarab Singh's Windsiker are to head up IRC0.

Team Mandrake, which has dominated in previous years, will go up against a highly charged pack consisting of Karasu (JPN) and Madame Butterfly (GBR), whilst Premier class sees the return of the pace-setting Pine-Pacific (THA) team.

Both the Bareboat Charter and Cruising classes comprise large fleets, and the Cruising Multihull fleet continues to grow. A smaller but ever-more-tightly competitive Firefly 850 grouping features familiar names Twin Sharks and Voodoo, whilst the One-Design class this year runs with the Pulse 600 design.

The International Dinghy racing is sponsored by the Government Lottery Office and is divided into the following classes: Optimist Boy & Girl, Laser 4.7, Laser Radial, Laser Standard and Topper.

Featured Brokerage
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Drop dead gorgeous day sailor, a mini Wally in every sense.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

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Raceboats Only 1998 Nautor Swan 56 - KING DADDY. 625,000 USD. Located in Newport, RI - USA.

Quite obviously adored Swan 56 from 1998. Continuously maintained and polished to the enth. She has an excellent sail package/electronics and of course, the carbon rig, all a huge plus for this Swan.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

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+44 (0) 1590 679 222


Raceboats Only 1998 Nautor Swan 56 - WHY NOT. 490,000 EUR. Located in En-route Palma de Mallorca.

German Frers Swan from 98. Following a refit in 2007 by Villefranche the current owner has had a continuous maintenance and upgrade programme in place. Well worth a look.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Ben Cooper
+44 (0) 1590 679 222

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The Last Word
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