In This Issue
• Turner's dream comes Alive
• New Year Message from the Finn Class
• Seahorse Sailor Of The Month
• Wang Jue joins China SailGP Team
• F18, N18 & 2000 are Grafham Grand Prix victors
• Golden Globe Race: Istvan Kopar rounds Cape Horn
• Industry News
• Featured Brokerage
• The Last Word: Brion Gysin
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
Turner's dream comes Alive
For Phillip Turner the dream of winning the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race began "five or six years ago" when he was watching the finish and suddenly thought: "I'd like to win that one day."
On Sunday that dream became real for Turner, a retired professional gambler, when his yacht Alive was formally declared the overall winner of this year's race and he received the Tattersall Cup from the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia's Commodore, Paul Billingham.
Alive's overall win in the Rolex Sydney Hobart is only the fourth by a Tasmanian boat. The last was Bob Cumming's Screw Loose in 1979. The previous two were G.D. Gibson's Westward in 1947 and 1948.
Renamed Alive by Turned after buying it, she filled his trophy cabinet with wins in a number of east coast races in Australia before heading to the south-east Asia circuit in 2017. On returning home she was second over the line, third overall and won ORCi in the 2017 Brisbane Gladstone Race, then third on line in the Brisbane to Keppel race.
Alive, which was also fifth over the line in this year's Sydney Hobart – finishing in 2 days 1 hour 40 minutes 36 seconds – won the race overall with a corrected time of 3 days 6 hours 41 minutes 16 seconds.
Second was the NSW entry Wild Oats X owned by the Oatley Family and skippered by Stacey Jackson who had an all-female professional crew. Their corrected time was 3d 7h 55m 11s, followed by the Hugh Ellis owned and Adrienne Cahalan navigated Voodoo from Victoria in 3d 8h 44m 20s.
New Year Message from the Finn Class
We begin 2019 with a heavy heart and an immense task ahead of us – how to maintain and enrich the health of our beloved class in the light of the news from November that we might no longer have a place in the Olympic programme for 2024.
It is a challenging time for all of us. I quite understand the feelings of frustration, helplessness, anger and grief that have been displayed since November. The subsequent events concerning faulty votes that could have potentially overturned the decision have not really helped our feelings of disappointment in the whole process.
The IFA maintains its position that the decision taken in November in Sarasota, to add an offshore keelboat event and drop the event that was intended for the Finn, is not in the best interests of sailors or sailing at the Olympics. Despite assurances that Finn sailors could convert to the keelboat, it was an empty promise, made only to ensure the success of the submission. With no equipment available for sailors above 85 kg, a large part of the sailing world will be excluded and feel disenfranchised from Olympic competition. We feel this is a huge loss to the competitive, technical and traditional side of the Olympic Games. The Finn Class is widely regarded as the elder statesman to the Olympic sailing classes, and its loss will be felt much wider than the athletes who would have taken part.
The Council decision in November to approve the last minute offshore keelboat submission of the WS board was very narrowly passed, and it has since been contested by four distinguished and long standing Councillors who claim their vote was recorded incorrectly. Various reports were published about the reliability of the voting system used, but just before Christmas, Council approved the minutes from November despite 11 councillors rejecting it. We had hoped that Council would take the brave decision to correct the vote on submission 37, but it was not to be and we now have to plan for the future.
What I am able to say is that the entire IFA Executive has been very heartened by the huge number of messages of support and sympathy since the November decision, from right across the sailing world. It is hard to go anywhere without seeing and hearing this support, and we are all most grateful for this outpouring of, what is for many, a sense of injustice about an unjustifiable decision by World Sailing.
However it is worth noting that the Events for 2024 will not be confirmed until they receive final IOC approval, which will not be until after the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games; and there is no guarantee they will be approved.
Full statement by class President Balazs Hajdu at: finnclass.org
Seahorse Sailor Of The Month
Last month's winner:
Boris Herrmann (GER)
'I like Paul just as much but his win was a present from Alex and, hey, who else could a German vote for?' - Jochen Rieker; 'Good sailor, inshore and offshore which is not usual' - Max Wentzel; 'Boris is not only an excellent yachtsman but he also managed to get the finance... which is now perhaps more challenging than the sailing' - Uwe Hollenbach; 'Best German sailor ever!' - Andreas Elwe; 'Boris is just a fantastic sailor and also a great guy!' - Bendix Hempel; 'The clear winner, Boris and Team Malizia all the way, he is incredibly well-organised and works very hard to keep all his fans in touch... He's a top chap!' - Sophie Hunt.
This month's nominees:
Glenn Ashby (AUS)
By the end of the Australian A-Class Nationals the rest of the fleet warming up for the worlds the following week must have already been throughly grumpy, the 'nine-time' world champion winning with 5 bullets in 8 races. It got worse... after the first day of the worlds Ashby came back ashore with three wins in three races (amazing no one else went home really). Did we say that last year he skippered the America's Cup winner?
Jorge Zarif (BRA)
Talk about the man of the moment. Zarif has a long history of success in the Finn class including winning the Gold Cup aged 20 while holding the Junior Silver Cup (still the only person ever to do so). Then in 2018 he paid the Star class some attention, winning the worlds and, perhaps even more impressive, seeing off the most star-studded fleet ever to win the Star Sailors League and become the closest thing to sailing's International Champion of Champions
Seahorse Sailor of the Month is sponsored by Musto, Harken McLube & Dubarry. Who needs silverware, our prizes are usable!
Cast your vote, submit comments, even suggest a candidate for next month at seahorsemagazine.com/sailor-of-the-month/vote-for-sailor-of-the-month
Wang Jue joins China SailGP Team
Recruitment has begun in China SailGP Team's quest to field a fully Chinese national team, with Wang Jue of Shanghai set to join the team prior to SailGP's inaugural event in Sydney, just 49 days away.
Development is a crucial element of the China SailGP Team, which has a mandate to build to a 100 percent nationality by SailGP's fourth season. Designated by SailGP and World Sailing as a developing country, the China SailGP Team can initially utilize non-native sailors to safely and competitively pilot the demanding F50 yachts from the first race, but must increase nationality by 20 percent each season.
Wang was previously a member of China Team for the 32nd America's Cup in 2007 and the Extreme Sailing Series Asia in 2009-10. The 34-year old recently returned to sailing after an eight-year hiatus, and has been training in Valencia, Spain, under Italian Olympic silver medalist Luca Devoti on the Finn.
In order to earn his spot on the team, Wang – who is a strong physical presence at 6 foot, 1 inch, and 234 pounds – was tested in a number of categories, including overall wellness, body composition, strength and grinding. He was classified by Maclean-Martin as a "complete package," having scored high across the board on top of the experience he has in sailing, and in recent training in both sailing and soccer.
The China SailGP Team is helmed by New Zealander Phil Robertson, a regular fixture on the World Match Racing Tour podium since his debut in 2009, and a championship winner in 2016. The other three Chinese sailors – Liu 'Black' Xue, Chen 'Horace' Jinhao and Liu 'Leo' Ming – are all upcoming offshore sailors, who have represented Dongfeng Race Team in the Volvo Ocean Race, including during the team's winning campaign in 2017-18.
SailGP 2019 season will kick off in Sydney in February.
F18, N18 & 2000 are Grafham Grand Prix victors
The 38th Grafham Grand Prix, part of the Selden SailJuice Winter Series, drew a record entry of 203 boats for the event on Sunday 30 December. Conditions for the end of December were kind: a gentle 6 to 8 knot breeze and temperature of around 10 deg C. The entry list was full some 12 hours ahead of the final closing time, and the largest class represented was the Solo with an impressive 23 entries. Other double-figure entries were from the RS600s (11), RS Aero 7 (11), Laser (10), and Laser Radial (10). Racing was on three separate courses: Fast/Asymmetric sailing an upwind/downwind course, Medium, and Slow, both sailing trapezoid courses. All fleets completed the scheduled three back to back races and were back on shore in time for mince pies and mulled wine.
The Fast/Asymmetric fleet had an entry of 35. Winners overall for the second year running, and first catamaran, were David White and Jon Sweet from Grafham Water Sailing Club counting two first places. The Norfolk Punt of Colin and Oly Murray came in second place and Ben Schooling third in his Musto Skiff.
The Medium fleet had an entry of 82. There were some late adjustments to the results, but following these the National 18, sailed by Peter Gray, Rachael Rhodes and Simon Forbes from Staunton Harold, emerged as the worthy winner, counting a first and a second and discarding their BFD in Race Three. George Smith and Michael Iszatt, both part of the strong RS600 representation, took second and third slots respectively, with Olympic sailor Ben Saxton and Izzy Hamilton fourth in their RS200.
The Slow fleet had an entry of 86. Eventual winners were Simon Horsfield and Katie Burridge, from Army Sailing Association, in their 2000, counting two firsts. Jon Emmett was second in his Laser and last year's winner, Jasper Barnham and Serena de Nahlik, from Snettisham Beach, were third. Alastair Goodwin from HISC was fourth in his Laser.
First event of the new year and fifth of the Series is the Bloody Mary, the classic pursuit race near Heathrow Airport on 12 January.
Golden Globe Race: Istvan Kopar rounds Cape Horn
Jean-Luc Van Den Heede still has a solid hold on the lead, despite damage sustained to Matmut's mast during the Southern Ocean. The storms that are predicted to surround Uku Randmaa over the next 24 hours
Mark Slats should enjoy steady conditions in the South East Trades for the next few days.
Istvan Kopar rounded Cape Horn at 19:00 UTC yesterday, giving the 65-year old American/Hungarian a perfect New Year boost. To have got this far has been a triumph over adversity in every sense since the start from Les Sables d'Olonne on July 1st last year.
Kopar's Tradewind 35 Puffin has suffered continued self-steering issues from Day 1 that led him to consider throwing in the towel at the Cape Verde islands. His SSB radio has been on the blink almost as long, preventing him from picking up weather forecasts or communicating with other skippers; his freshwater tanks became contaminated, and Kopar had to fashion new cogs to replace those that were breaking up in the steering pedestal gearbox.
Yet despite all this, Kopar has become the 4th of 17 starters to round the Cape back into the Atlantic, speeding along at 6 knots, having recovered 58 miles on race leader Jean-Luc Van Den Heede over the Christmas/New Year period.
Today, main concern is focussed on 3rd placed Estonian Uku Randmaa whose Rustler 36 One and All has failed to out-run a storm now heading straight for him 1,000 miles east of the Argentine coast. Race Chairman Don McIntyre says: "Unfortunately he cannot outrun it as preceding northerly winds may halt his progress and then push him into the most dangerous sector where he may be trapped for about 18h-24hrs. Winds are expected to gust 60-75kts with dangerous 6-8mtr seas. The system is about 800 miles across moving relatively fast. It's a large system!"
Race HQ will be monitoring Uku's position carefully and remain on-hand 24/7 providing him with regular weather reports and advice.
Position of skippers at 08:00 UTC 02.01.19
1. Jean- Luc VDH (FRA) Rustler 36 Matmut, 2479 nm to finish
2. Mark Slats (NED) Rustler 36 Ohpen Maverick, 900 nm to leader
3. Uku Randmaa (EST) Rustler 36 One and All, 3276
4. Istvan Kopar (USA)Tradewind 35 Puffin, 4428
5. Tapio Lehtinen (FIN) Gaia 36 Asteria , 7343
1. Igor Zaretskiy (RUS) Endurance 35 Esmeralda - In Albany, W Australia
Ancasta is delighted to announce that First Class Sailing has purchased two new Beneteau Oceanis 38.1.
The Beneteaus will be used as part of the sail training which First Class Sailing offers, including RYA courses from Competent Crew to Yachtmaster Ocean, boat handling and mile building sailing weekends plus more.
Ancasta is the largest Beneteau Power and Sail dealer in the UK and the largest boat sales network in Europe.
Ancasta will be showcasing Beneteau Oceanis 38.1, as well as a fantastic array of power and sail boats, at Boot Dusseldorf Boat Show 2019 (19-27th Jan).
First Class Sailing runs RYA practical courses out of MDL's Shamrock Quay, Southampton, as well as offering RYA shore-based learning (including courses in clients' offices) in London. Find out more at www.firstclasssailing.com
Clipper Ventures, the parent company of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, has bought one of the RYA's leading sailing schools in the UK, Hamble School of Yachting.
Clipper Race Chairman and Co-Founder Sir Robin Knox-Johnston explains: "The decision to buy Hamble School of Yachting is part of a wider strategy to develop our offering within the offshore sailing industry.
"Clipper Ventures is the world's leading provider of offshore sail training and Hamble School of Yachting is one of the RYA's leading sail training schools in the UK which makes us a strong match. We welcome Chris and his team to the Clipper Ventures family and look forward to an exciting future of maintaining ourselves as the Gold Standard for sail training."
Hamble School of Yachting has been running for over 35 years, specialising in helping people who want to learn how to sail by providing a full range of RYA sailing courses and lessons, from beginner to professional level.
The acquisition comes at an exciting time for Clipper Ventures which recently announced Clipper China, its Chinese sail training division set up to meet the country's growing participation in offshore sailing. This expansion in China will benefit significantly from Hamble School of Yachting's vast expertise in delivering world leading training.
A big and small anniversary in Dusseldorf, Germany: Estonia, the Baltic pearl, is celebrating its fifth joint stand at the 50th anniversary celebrations of the world's largest water sports exhibition "boot". From 19 to 27 January, nine companies will showcase their products locally in the four halls 8a, 10, 13 and 15. Three world premieres of the sailing yacht Saare 38.2 and the motorboats Alunaut A10 RIB SAR and LarsenB 920 will be the presenting highlights on Tuesday 22 January at 11am (Saare) and 3.30pm. These will be unveiled during the course of the traditional Estonia reception with the ambassador of the Republic of Estonia, Mart Laanemäe, and acclaimed representatives from the Ministry of the Economy.
When the Estonian Business Development department, Enterprise Estonia, first organised a joint appearance in 2015 at the world's number one water sports trade fair, only insiders really knew the quality of Estonian boats and equipment. The tourist advantages of the sun-kissed coasts between the capital city of Tallinn and the port city of Pärnu in the south were also still largely unknown. Last but not least, by continuously exhibiting at "boot" in Dusseldorf, the spotlight has been shone on the importance of the maritime sector in the northern Baltic region far beyond Central Europe, which is based on a centuries-old tradition in Estonia.
Belfast, Northern Ireland-based Artemis Technologies Ltd has partnered with simulator manufacturer Cruden to develop a new fast craft sailing simulator that can be used for analyzing hull designs, developing control systems, and training crews for competitive sailing events.
Development costs for the simulator exceeded $3m, according to David Tyler, commercial director at Artemis Technologies. The simulator's realism is said to be essential for crew training, which consists of familiarisation with the boat's latest systems, rehearsing responses to emergency and failure modes, and building muscle memory and rhythm for manoeuvres.
Tyler notes that the company is open to discussions with prospective third-party buyers, and that the platform or cockpit can be changed to suit different applications.
Designed in association with America's Cup challenger Artemis Racing, the new sail simulator utilises Cruden's latest Panthera simulator software, controlled from a top platform structure that's based on a key section of an F50 catamaran. A 4.5m high, 210-degree wraparound screen provides a realistic operator environment, utilising images from three Barco F70-4K6 4K UHD laser phosphor projectors.
Farr 100 - LEOPARD 3 Triple Lindy
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The Last Word
As no two people see the world the same way, all trips from here to there are imaginary; all truth is a tale I am telling myself. -- Brion Gysin
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