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In This Issue
2018 Etchells World Championship
Special Delivery by Courrier Recommande
2018 Annual Conference - 28 October Recap
Wight Vodka Best Sailor's Bar
Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe
New WIM Series event in Shanghai 2019
Keep moving - Carbolink
For the Record
Featured Brokerage
The Last Word: Albert Einstein

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

2018 Etchells World Championship
Brisbane AUS: Today, Brisbane pretty much offered the classic mix of sun, and just enough wind for the last two races of the 2018 Etchells World Championship. I think it is fair to say that it was very much appreciated by all and sundry, whether they were competitors, or part of the large flotilla of spectators who took to Moreton Bay to witness the crowning of a new champion.

So at around 1030hrs local, with the Sou'easter coming in from 140 degrees and blowing 7 knots at the bottom, and more like 9 at the top, Course 2 out to a range of 2nm, with the leeward gate set 0.7nm further uphill from the start, was all set up and ready to go. Pretty standard stuff by now…

Overnight leader, Lisa Rose (Martin Hill, Julian Plante, Sean O'Rourke, and Mat Belcher) would collect the win in Race Eight. Now whilst this may not have set the padlock on the gate, it well and truly closed it, and so staying in front of your opposition would see you become the 2018 Etchells World Champions in front of a lot of family and friends, as well as many a keen enthusiast. This all came to pass later in the afternoon in Race Nine.

In addition to the overall win, there were the Senior and Masters Divisions wins, as well. "Yes, it is very nice to hear those words, World Champion", said Hill. "It is something we did not expect. We did know that we had a good team, however. I had known Mat for over 10 years, but it is a pretty tall order to arrive here with a fresh team, and against this sort of fleet, but we worked it together, and we felt the chemistry was right, so we improved as the series went on."

The largest division in the regatta is the Corinthians, who represent over half of the 94-boat fleet and are also 100% amateur. The popular Iron Lotus crew of Tom King, Ivan Wheen, David Edwards, and Greg O'Shea finished in 13th place overall, with a 49th place their worst result, once the Black Flag had been discarded.

At the time of writing there was a protest pending involving the leader in the Youth Division, Bait N Switch, which was crewed by Jake Lilley, Matt Wearn and Lewis Brake. Irrespective of the outcome, Jake Lilley's comments about the sailing, the class, and the benefits of sailing Etchells still stand. "It's been a long week of racing against a lot of top guys, and all the best in the world. It is a pretty new experience for us. It was our first time racing the Etchells, and all together too. It was also our first real Etchells regatta. So we have learned a lot, and it's really valuable experience for us in our Olympic campaigns moving forward."

Final top ten
1. Martin Hill / Sean O'Rourke / Julian Plante / Mat Belcher, AUS, 46.0
2. Mark Thornburrow / Mike Huang / Alexander Conway / Will Ryan, HKG, 63.0
3. Matthew Chew / Brian Donovan / Ben Vercoe / Ashley Deeks, AUS, 65.0
4. John Bertrand / Ben Lamb / Noel Drennan, AUS, 72.0
5. Chris Hampton / Sam Haines / Charlie Cumbley, AUS, 96.0
6. Stephen Benjamin / Michael Menninger / Ian Liberty / Jonathan Goldsberry, USA, 104.0
7. Jay Cross / Mike Buckley / George Peet /Eric Shampain, USA, 109.0
8. Jud Smith / Mark Johnson / Andrew Smith, AUS, 110.0
9. Lawrie Smith / Richard Parslow / Goncalo Ribeiro / Pedro Andrade, GBR, 112.0
10. William Voerman / Lucas Down / Gary Van Lunteren, AUS, 127.0


Special Delivery by Courrier Recommande
At 1100 CEST on October 25th, the winner of the 50th anniversary Rolex Middle Sea Race was announced as Gery Trentesaux's Courrier Recommande. With neither of the two boats still at sea able to overhaul the corrected time of the French JPK 11.80, Trentesaux adds the laurels of the Mediterranean's highly-regarded 600-mile offshore classic to the Rolex Fastnet victory he achieved in 2015, and his many other successes.

Second place overall has been secured by the Czech entry Bohemia Praha Debra, the Figaro II, owned by Milan Tomek, which corrected out four hours behind. Another French entry, the MN43 Albator, skippered by Philippe Frantz, took the final spot on the podium.

Trentesaux is one of France's most successful racing yachtsmen. Following his victory at the Rolex Fastnet in 2015, Trentesaux announced at the prize giving - to the relief of many rival sailors - that he was retiring from offshore competition. So, it was a pleasant surprise for the Royal Malta Yacht Club to have such an esteemed sailor come out of 'retirement' to participate in its celebratory race. "I said that I would stop racing offshore after the 2015 Rolex Fastnet Race," explained the softly-spoken Trentesaux. "However, for me, offshore racing is an addiction. I started when I was 14, I love the atmosphere and I could not resist coming to the Rolex Middle Sea Race this year." Trentesaux has only taken part in the race once before, in 1982, when he was 23 and had just completed his military service.

Over many years, Trentesaux's series of boats all starting with the prefix Courrier have been regularly winning trophies in northern European waters. The core crew has remained stable throughout, and includes the likes of Alexis Loisin, overall winner of the 2013 Rolex Fastnet and one half of the first ever crew to win a 600-mile race sailing two-handed.

Courrier Recommande is the third French flagged yacht to win the race overall following the exploits of Antares in 1981 and Thierry Bouchard/Spirit of Ad Hoc in 2008.


2018 Annual Conference - 28 October Recap
World Sailing's 2018 Annual Conference is underway in Sarasota, Florida, USA and Sunday saw the meeting of the Classes Committee as well as the Youth Events, International Measurers, International Judges and Race Management Sub-Committees.

Classes Committee
Alongside a review of the submissions the classes discussed the concept of day zero which means that the moment sailors go through equipment inspection, they are accountable for their actions.

By taking this approach, if equipment inspectors find a modification of equipment or an attempt to breach the rules, a protest can be lodged and the jury can take appropriate action.

The Committee recommended the International Measurers Sub-committee and Equipment Rules Sub-committee to work with World Sailing's Executive Office to establish options and policies that can implement either a day zero or other equipment regulations.

Youth Events Sub-committee
A full report on Youth Sailing World Championships will be posted on the 11th Hour Racing on Monday 29 October but headline information can be found here.

Looking further ahead, Tomasz Chamera of the Polish Yachting Association presented an update on the 2019 edition. Gdynia, Poland will host the event next July and Chamera presented key information such as accommodation for the athletes, location of boat parks and other logistical information.

The Youth Events Sub-committee also focused on the Youth Olympic Games. Buenos Aires, Argentina hosted the most recent event which concluded on 18 October. Girl's and Boy's Kiteboarding, Girl's and Boy's Windsurfing and the Mixed Nacra 15 provided a spectacle on the waters off of San Isidro. Dakar, Senegal will host the next edition in 2022 and the sub-committee discussed possible events and formats.


Wight Vodka Best Sailor's Bar
Supported by Latitude Kinsale and Seahorse magazine

Our tenth annual competition now open for stories about your favourite bar and drink recipe submissions.

This one from one of our favorite journalists (and your humble narrator's doppelganger)

Name and location of the bar
Cloggys Falmouth Harbour Antigua

Here's what makes it so great...
The atmosphere is fantastic! It's the big sailor hang out in Antigua. The walls are full of clogs painted and even with rigs of visiting yachts - from small boats right through to superyachts. Cloggys is run by Ton & Vanessa and they have wonderful staff and a superb menu. Dining on the first floor deck overlooking all the yachts in Falmouth. Just spectacular and moderately priced.

Is there a special drink they make? Care to share the recipe with us?
For me it's either English Harbour 5 Year Old Rum and Ginger Ale or Minuty (Rose wine) but they make fabulous cocktails and run by a Dutch couple. Heineken!

Our contest holds a special prize for the winner. Not only will the establishment receive an award plaque and a bottle of Wight Vodka, they'll also win a custom made 3D chart of their locale from Latitude Kinsale. Framed in one of their exclusive frames incorporating Surround Lighting™ and mounted on carbon fibre. Value €2000.

Tell us all about YOUR favourite sailor's bar: scuttlebutteurope.com/sailors-bars

Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe
Alex Thomson will start the Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe solo transatlantic race on Sunday 4th November armed with what, in Hugo Boss, he considers to be the fastest, best-optimised IMOCA 60 in the race's record-sized fleet of 20 boats.

He has the experience of back-to-back podium finishes in consecutive Vendee Globes, sailing's pinnacle solo race, but still the 44-year-old British skipper is not tipped by French experts as a favourite to win this 3,542-nautical mile race from Saint Malo in Brittany to Guadeloupe in the Caribbean.

"It does not bother me what the perception is in France," a relaxed Thomson said in Saint Malo aboard his race boat. "I have had a reputation for being a maverick and I used to love it and there were times when I used to hate it. But now, it does not bother me. I don't really care. At least people think I am too fast rather than too slow."

For many years Thomson was considered the outsider in IMOCAs, a hothead racer who pushed too hard and broke too many boats. Then, in the 2016-17 Vendee Globe he pushed winner Armel Le Cleac'h all the way to the finish, despite having broken a foil less than two weeks into the 74-day contest.

As Thomson bids to win the Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe at his first attempt at the race after 15 years in the IMOCA class, his French rivals are according him plenty respect, even if the commentariat of French sailing do not.

Chief among them is Jeremie Beyou who finished third behind Thomson in the last Vendee Globe and who's Charal is the only latest-generation foiling IMOCA to have been launched since the last race.

Just along the race dock from Thomson, Beyou, a three-time winner of the Solitaire du Figaro who was part of the Volvo Ocean Race-winning Dongfeng crew, spoke of his admiration for his British rival.

"Alex's will be the team we are watching closest as we move towards the Vendee Globe," Beyou said. "I think his new boat will be a similar philosophy to mine; you need to have a quick downwind boat, but right now Alex is my closest rival. He has the money, the experience now and he is so very highly motivated to win. I think he can push the boat very hard and is fast.

"On my side, doing the Volvo was a big step because you really have to push hard; you have to remove that part of your brain that holds you back and just get on with it and push. I have definitely changed. Alex maybe had that quality already before and so maybe we are converging in our approach a bit.

"And I adore what he does for the class globally," added Beyou. "He is a great ambassador for this sport of extreme solo sailing and he puts it in front of a big global audience and that is what we want. And as a sailor he has matured and is better able to regulate his pace. Before, in France, we would call him a hothead or speak about his foot which was too heavy on the gas, but in the last two Vendee Globes he has more than proved himself."

Beyou jokes: "Solo sailing was supposed to be a French thing but Alex is making it otherwise."

The race was first held in 1978 and in its 40th anniversary year, the race is celebrating record entries with 124 male and female skippers in six classes taking to the start line on November 4, 2018.


New WIM Series event in Shanghai 2019
A new event will be added to the Women's International Match Racing Series next year - a Chinese event will take place in the fall of 2019.

After a deal made between the WIM Series and the event organizer FarEast Boats, a new WIM Series regatta will be raced in Shanghai in 2019. This is the start of a long-term plan for future events that will take place in China and the the WIM Series will visit other venues in the following years. The WIM Series, the world's only professional sailing series for women, has been looking to add an event in Asia for many years.

The event will be raced in Fareast 28's in the fall of 2019. The dates for the event will be presented shortly.

Remaining 2018 WIM Series events:
- Swiss International Women's Match, Ascona, Switzerland : 30 October - 3 November (J/70)
- Carlos Aguilar Match Race 2018, St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands : 29 November - 2 December (IC 24)


Keep moving - Carbolink
Swiss-based Carbo-Link has long been one of the quiet giants of high performance sailing… It is only now, many years after they rigged their first America's Cup winner for Alinghi that word is getting out at last

What do Ariane's space rockets, Porsche's racing cars, Liebherr's largest industrial cranes and some of the world's most technically advanced suspension bridges have in common with Ultime Trimarans, Maxi 72s and most of the recent contenders in the America's Cup? They all rely on cutting-edge composite solutions from Carbo-link to solve extremely complex structural engineering challenges and gain a competitive advantage.

Carbo-Link's roots are in hi-tech civil and industrial engineering - the company is a spin-off from the highly regarded Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (EMPA) - but while it remains a world leader in these fields, working on large-scale infrastructure projects, its technology has migrated into other industries including aerospace, motor sport and high-performance sailing. Since the turn of the millennium, a major focus for Carbo-Link's innovation has been the development and refinement of new, often groundbreaking, rigging solutions for high-performance racing and superyachts.

Full story in the November issue of Seahorse

The World Sailing Show
The biggest and most powerful offshore sailing machines in the world prepare to rise up out of the water as they take to hydrofoils for the 40th anniversary of the singlehanded Route du Rhum transatlantic race. We step aboard Gitana 17 to find out how to fly a 32m trimaran, alone.

The bar has been raised inshore too, as a new global racing circuit for 50knot foiling cats is unveiled.

We get behind the scenes with the top 52 Super Series team and take in the spectacular scenery at the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup in Sardinia.

Plus; a double rescue drama in the Southern Ocean, competition on the edge in Japan and racing that goes down to the wire in San Diego.

How to fly a 32m tri - Gitana 17 explained
New global foiling circuit - Sail GP announced
Southern Ocean rescue - Golden Globe drama
52 Super Series - The final showdown
World Cup Series - First taste of Enoshima
Extreme Sailing Series - Top dogs toppled in San Diego
Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup

For the Record
The WSSR Council announces the establishment of a new World Record:

Record: 60 ft Monohull 24 Hour Record
Yacht: "Hugo Boss" 60 ft Monohull.
Name: Alex Thomson. GBR
Dates:. 19th to the 20th July 2018.
Start time: 08;00;00. UTC on 19/07/18
Start position: 43.31822 / -58.23088
Finish time: 08;00;00 UTC on 20/07/18
Finish position: 47.30244 / -46.74426
Elapsed time: 24 hours.
Distance: 539.71 NM
Average speed: 22.49 kts
Comments: Previous record: "Hugo Boss" Alex Thomson. GBR. 2017. 536.81 NM

John Reed
Secretary to the WSSR Council

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The Last Word
If I were to remain silent, I'd be guilty of complicity. -- Albert Einstein

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