In This Issue
Close running in the Southern Ocean | Injury on board Team Brunel | Wight Vodka Best Yachting Bar... VOTING IS OPEN | Black Jack beats Wild Oats XI to win Big Boat Challenge on Sydney Harbour | King George stands in for Queen Mary | Drew takes on Kialoa II | What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine | Sail Sydney Ends On A High | Tank farm America's Cup option worth another look: PM | Urgent RRS Changes | Fifth Edition of the Resolute Cup Set for Newport in September | Skip the Straw - Go Straight for the Drink | Viktor Yakovlevich Potapov | 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

Close running in the Southern Ocean
Current Leg 3 frontrunners Dongfeng Race Team and MAPFRE have been racing practically neck and neck on Monday as the Southern Ocean continued to test the Volvo Ocean Race fleet.

After eight extraordinary days at sea less than three nautical miles split leg leaders Dongfeng from arch-rivals MAPFRE in the runner-up spot, with both crews within 2,700 miles of the finish line in Melbourne, Australia.

The action at the front has been so tight that earlier today MAPFRE had to ease their sails in order to avoid a collision with leaders Dongfeng on one of many close crosses over the past 12 hours.

It is an incredible occurrence given their position thousands of miles from anywhere. In fact, in the past 24 hours the fleet has sailed a few hundred miles north of the Kerguelen island chain, one of the most isolated places on the planet.

Overnight MAPFRE slipped to almost 20 miles adrift of Dongfeng, but when the sun came up again Xabi Fernandez's Spanish crew were back on the coat tails of Charles Caudrelier's Franco-Chinese outfit.

Leg 3 - Position Report - Monday 18 December (Day 9) - 13:00 UTC
1. Donfeng Race Team -- distance to finish - 2,683.3 nautical miles
2. MAPFRE +2.7 nautical miles
3. Vestas 11th Hour Racing +55.8
4. Team Brunel +65.4
5. Sun Hung Kai / Scallywag +85.0
6. Turn the Tide on Plastic +144.3
7. team AkzoNobel +280.7

Injury on board Team Brunel
The British sailor Annie Lush has injured her back during Leg 3 of the Volvo Ocean Race. This weekend Lush together with Burling were standing at the rear grinder when the boat hit a wave. Lush and Burling were swept against the rear guard. Lush ended up suffering from her back ever since. Burling is doing well.

At the time of the incident, both sailors were secured to the boat with their safety line. At this moment Annie Lush is unable to join the watch system. The British sailor rests in her bunk. Every six hours the boat is in contact with the doctors on shore.

Wight Vodka Best Yachting Bar... VOTING IS OPEN
Wight Vodka We've got our top dozen chosen... and you now can vote for Best in the Caribbean and Best Elsewhere.

As Al Capone's pals in Chicago used to say... vote early and vote often. In theory, the software restricts you to voting just once a day.

So.. spread the word to your friends, sailing mates and family.

Here's one of our favorites, and one your humble narrator visited via sailboard from St. John many years ago.

Foxy's on Jost Van Dyke. Which has not just survived the hurricane, it's served for weeks as a community hub and support center for the island.

From their website:

Although we suffered severe damage, most of Foxy's is intact and we are working everyday to be fully functional! Our beach bar is open daily in Great Harbour from 10:30a.m. with lunch daily. We are open for dinner from Thursday - Sundays, soon to resume to 7 nights per week.

YES! We are hosting our annual New Year's Eve/Old Year's Night Party on December 31st. A Stage is being built in front of the restaurant on the beachfront and Veteran DJs DRE and AVALANCHE will join the lineup. Ring in the New Year with the sounds of Spectrum Band VI. The 2017/2018 Theme is "Fall of the Roman Empire/Rise of the Phoenix." Grab a bedsheets and make yourself a Toga! Information about ferry service from Tortola and St Thomas to be posted here soon. Special VIP Dinner will be held in the UpperCrust. Tickets are $250 each and include access to VIP area and a 3 course meal featuring local Caribbean Lobster and Steak as main course. For questions, please email .

We will be open for Christmas Eve Dinner on December 24th. You can make reservations by emailing .

Hope to see you for the 2017/2018 season!!

If you'd like to contribute to rebuilding Foxy's— you can make a tax deductible contribution to One Love BVI at - Mark your donation "Foxy's BVI".

Please visit our Facebook page at for more regular updates!


Black Jack beats Wild Oats XI to win Big Boat Challenge on Sydney Harbour
Super maxi Black Jack made an early statement ahead of this year's Sydney to Hobart, finishing 43 seconds clear of fierce rival Wild Oats XI to take line honours in last Tuesday's Big Boat Challenge.

Wild Oats XI skipper Mark Richards, who was joined in the crew by Crown Prince Frederik and Princess Mary of Denmark, was quick to promise his boat would improve ahead of the 73rd ocean classic before taking a swipe at the lack of competitors in the only lead-up race on Sydney Harbour.

Just four boats contested the annual Big Boat Challenge, which raises money for the Safety Of Life At Sea (SOLAS) trusts, established after six competitors lost their lives in the 1998 Sydney to Hobart. There were eight starters in the race last year.

Beau Geste was third across the line while 66-footer Wild Oats X finished fourth, although it did win the Big Boat Challenge on handicap.

Of the other super maxis entered into the Sydney to Hobart, LDV Comanche didn't contest Tuesday's race because most of the crew is still in the United States, while InfoTrack, formerly Perpetual Loyal, was not yet ready to compete. But it was a conspicuous spectator as skipper Christian Beck took it out for a practice sail.

"This was a fundraising event for the SOLAS foundation, which is a big deal, a foundation that really supports us as sailors at sea more than any other foundation in the whole industry," Richards said. "To be not supporting that I think's a real shame.

"It's the second biggest spectator boat fleet on the harbour apart from the Sydney to Hobart every year. A lot of people are interested in the race, a lot of people are out there giving to charity, there's a lot of functions on before the event for charity, the positions on the boats raise a lot of money for the foundation, and to have a small fleet is pretty disappointing.

"We had a few issues on board. The Black Jack guys did a better job today and they got the result. -- James Buckley

King George stands in for Queen Mary
Thanks to some speedy action by King George Sailing Club, the King George Gallop steps in as a temporary replacement event for the Bloody Mary in the GJW Direct SailJuice Winter Series...

Following the reluctant but necessary cancellation of the Bloody Mary due to low water levels at Queen Mary Sailing Club, King George Sailing Club in North London is to host a replacement event on 6 January 2018. The newly-titled King George Gallop, named after the famous horse race the King George VI Chase, becomes a temporary replacement for the Bloody Mary in the GJW Direct SailJuice Winter Series.

Club commodore at King George, Tony Cooper said the club is excited at the prospect of holding the event, which has an entry limit of 100 boats. "With 232 acres of water and one of the largest sailing venue in London, we are looking forward to welcoming a diverse range of dinghies for what we expect to be an annual event."

King George is located close to where the North Circular meets the M11, just 10 minutes from J26 of the M25 and ideally suited for anyone looking to spend a weekend in London, with trains from Chingford or Ponders End taking less than 30 minutes to get to Liverpool Street.

Entry for the King George Gallop is now open, and you can secure your spot at this brand new event by going to:

Drew takes on Kialoa II
The crew of the delightful classic ketch, Kialoa II in front of the Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge. Photo by Andrea Francolini, Click on image to enlarge.

Kialoa It's been 46 years since Jim Kilroy's S&S penned, 73-foot, 45 metric tonne, alloy maxi yawl, Kialoa II, took line honours in the 1971 Sydney Hobart Yacht Race. She's about to do it all once again. Well done to Paddy Broughton for making it so, and for taking the old girl around the globe to do the races she did so well in all those years ago, including the Fastnet.

Apart from being wonderfully good sports, the team have real heart, also taking on November (charity with males growing Moustaches in November to support Men's health). Special thanks to them for taking 'Drew' (aka Andrea Francolini) out with them for a sail before this year's Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race. Drew applied his terrific talents to show you the ways of yore, and you can keep up to date with his works at his FB Page ( ) -- John Curnow in

Seahorse January 2018
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine

Seahorse Magazine

Well, this time it was always going to be about the Cup boat. Plus the growing case for a compulsory re-education programme for navigators - aimed at reminding them that the paper chart came before the transistor. The list of offenders is growing expensively... Jack Griffin, Ray Davies, Grant Simmer And Don Street Jnr

Good, good
An Olympic offshore demonstration event is gathering pace plus a catch-up with 'oversized' 470 gold medallist Sime Fantela. Andy Rice

Custom fit
The new lifejacket harness created for this Volvo Ocean Race just went live...

Total beauty, total speed and total beauty with speed, from Italy of course

Special rates for Scuttlebutt Europe subscribers:
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Sail Sydney Ends On A High
Following a highly competitive Olympic Classes section, which ended on Thursday, nearly 400 intrepid sailors across 22 fleets and 15 countries pulled on their wetsuits and took to the spectacular waters of Sydney Harbour.

Three days later the medallists were revealed, including Nacra 15 pair Ashleigh Swadling and George Morton, who produced a big last day performance to earn victory.

Among the other winners was Jack Ferguson, who claimed the Laser 4.7 class, even though it's not his usual event.

"I'm off to Perth for the 420 nationals and then on to the 420 worlds," Jack said. "I mainly sail a 420, but my 420 is currently in a container, so I thought I may as well do this regatta."

29er champions Annabelle Davies and Madison Woodward are heading to the Worlds in Hong Kong on December 28 and had a good workout to get used to it, with crew Maddy saying her job a lot of the time at Sail Sydney was to watch for traffic on the harbour.

Lara Quigley and Charlotte Toll didn't have quite the same problem, competing in the Pacer. "The Pacer is not the fastest boat in the world but we sail them because that's what we sail for school," Lara said.

Full results:

Tank farm America's Cup option worth another look: PM
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says it's worth getting another cost estimate on one of the location options for the America's Cup - despite Auckland Council saying it will cost too much to move hazardous materials offsite.

Ardern has also allayed fears that the negotiations over what area to use will drag on too long and put timeframes at risk.

"Our request and desire is that we keep our options open while we are in the middle of negotiations," Ardern told Mike Hosking on Newstalk ZB today.

"There has been a view by Council that the option we have been talking about down at Wynyard Point, which is around the tank farm, their view is that location would cost too much in terms of relocating some of the hazardous materials… we think that cost estimate needs to be looked at again.

"We both want the Cup to be held here. But we all have bottom lines. It is not a blank chequebook. And nor would taxpayers or ratepayers expect us to do that."

Urgent RRS Changes
Having reviewed the implementation of the new rules concerning support persons in the 2017 – 2020 Racing Rules of Sailing, World Sailing has made a number of urgent rule changes following feedback from MNAs and race officials.

These urgent rule changes affect the following rules: Definition Party, rules 63.1 and 64.4. There is also a new rule 63.9. These rule changes will come into effect on 1 January 2018.

You can find details of these changes and corrections at

Fifth Edition of the Resolute Cup Set for Newport in September
Teams of amateur sailors representing more than two dozen yacht clubs from all over the United States will take to the waters of Narragansett Bay next September to compete in the fifth edition of the Resolute Cup, the country's premiere Corinthian keelboat championship. The regatta, which will be hosted by the New York Yacht Club Harbour Court, September 10 to 15, 2018, is also the only pathway for an American yacht club to earn an invitation to the 2019 Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup, the first edition to be run in the new IC37 yacht.

The Resolute Cup event was first run in 2010, as the U.S. Qualifying Series, in response to the overwhelming interest from United States yacht clubs looking to participate in the Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup. However, the regatta quickly developed its own identity as the de facto amateur national club keelboat championship.

The 2018 Resolute Cup will be sailed in the New York Yacht Club's fleet of Sonars. Equalized rig tuning and provided sails will ensure this is a one-design regatta in the truest sense of the term, where the skill of the sailors on the boat decides the outcome of each race. Two days of qualifying will split the fleet into gold and silver groups. Scores from qualifying will not carry over to the championship and consolation rounds.

The process to request an invitation to the Resolute Cup is open, with a deadline of January 15 for clubs to complete their application.

To find out more about the regatta, or to request an invitation:

Skip the Straw - Go Straight for the Drink
In the U.S. alone, we use more than 500 million plastic straws every day, and most of them end up in our oceans, polluting the water and harming marine life. Boaters can stop this problem - #skipthestraw and go straight for the drink. Join the movement to stop single-use plastic straws:

Viktor Yakovlevich Potapov
On December 10, 2017, as a result of a car accident in Moscow, Viktor Yakovlevich Potapov has died. Viktor Potapov won the bronze medal at the 1972 Olympic Games in the Finn class. He later came fourth in the 470 class at 1976 Olympic Games, and was double world champion and European champion in the Tornado class. The Finn class and especially the Russian Finn Association mourns for Viktor Potapov. The International Finn Class Association send its deepest condolences to his family and friends.

A remembrance of Victor by Gus Miller:

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 Berngt O. Hult:

I noticed that all the crew is needed whenever the boats gybe. All things have to be moved to the new windward side. Have they never heard about Rule 51? Or is that too excepted to make it even less like yacht racing?

Featured Brokerage
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The new GS 34 Performance was designed for IRC handicap rating in offshore race and for ORC with an optimized sail plan and appendages. In this way the boat can be competitive in both offshore and inshore International regulations and with a great rating handicap.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Bach Yachting


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.

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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

See the collection at

The Last Word
The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice. -- Martin Luther King, Jr.

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