In This Issue
EFG Sailing Arabia - The Tour
Mark Slats secures 2nd place finish in Golden Globe Race
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine
Superyacht Challenge Antigua
Marsden & Mcgovern Blast Their Way To Tiger Trophy Victory
Final Race Day & Overall Results For Grenada Sailing Week 2019
18ft Skiffs Australian Championship, Race 5
M32 Mast Design Update
Happy 90th Birthday Transpac Yacht Club!
Featured Brokerage
The Last Word: Marcus Aurelius

Brought to you by Seahorse magazine and EuroSail News 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

Leaders are only seconds apart as EFG Sailing Arabia - The Tour holds first coastal raid off Muscat
Only seconds separated the leading yachts on the first coastal raid of EFG Sailing Arabia - The Tour as the international fleet took to the waters off Muscat, Muttrah and Bandar Al Khiran on Monday.

After almost two hours and 36 minutes of racing the French team of Cheminee Poujoulat took the win just 15 seconds ahead of the Oman Shipping Company entry, with EFG Bank taking the third spot on the podium.

Their impressive result in the opening coastal race of the two-week Oman challenge - along with second place in the flurry of stadium races on Sunday - moved Cheminee Poujoulat to the top of the overall EFG Sailing Arabia - The Tour table, with the Oman team in second spot.

In contrast to the strong winds and high-speed racing of Sunday, the 23 nautical mile coastal course started in a light and unstable breeze, the 10 teams working hard to get every bit of boatspeed out of their lightweight Diam 24 trimarans.

Racing in EFG Sailing Arabia - The Tour is scheduled to resume in Sur with a second coastal raid on Wednesday 6 February, followed by stadium racing the following day, before the fleet moves again to Masirah Island.

Overall standings after two days of racing:
1. Cheminee Poujoulat
2. Oman Shipping Company
3. Mood
4. Golfe du Morbihan
5. Beijaflore
6. Seaflotech
7. EFG Bank
8. CER Geneva
9. Renaissance
10. DB Schenker

Mark Slats secures 2nd place finish in Golden Globe Race
42-year old Dutch sailor Mark Slats and his Rustler 36 Ohpen Maverick took second place overall in the 2018 Golden Globe Race Saturday night, and despite the late hour, received a rousing welcome from Dutch, French and British supporters there to applaud his super-human efforts in trying to overhaul race winner Jean-Luc Van Den Heede back up the Atlantic Ocean.

Slats, a record breaking Atlantic rower, was challenging for the lead from the start, but a tactical decision to follow the traditional clipper ship route on a wide sweep round the western side of the South Atlantic, left him at a 900 mile disadvantage to his French rival by the time he had reached the Cape of Good Hope. Van Den Heede then extended that lead to 2,000 miles through the Southern Ocean before his yacht Matmut, another Rustler 36, was pitch poled some 1,900 miles west of Cape Horn which left the Frenchman with a damaged mast to nurse for the rest of the circumnavigation.

That gave Slats an opportunity - which he grasped with both hands. By the time he rounded Cape Horn, the Dutchman had regained 500 miles, and by the time they had reached the Azores, the difference between them in terms of distance to finish was less than 50 miles. That was when Slat's luck ran out. Questions over the validity of his Ham radio licence, left him ostracised by the amateur net and without regular weather updates at a critical period. "I didn't get forecasts for 7 days and ran straight into calms."

For Slats, the most frightening moments came in the Indian Ocean when caught in the same 60-70knot storm that put paid to Ireland's Gregor McGuckin and Indian Abhilash Tomy's challenges.

Mark Slats set a time of 214 days, 12hours, 18minutes 43seconds but carries a 36 hour penalty for improper contact over the Sat Phone by his team manage which leaves him with a race time of 216 days 00hours 18minutes 30 seconds.

Seahorse February 2019
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine

Seahorse Magazine

World news
Bits of boat floating everywhere... that 'Ultimate' question, Francis heads back to sea (obviously), turning things inside out with Daniel Andrieu and Guillaume Verdier, Rob Shaw and Greg Elliott back cutting wood again, the unstoppable Glenn Ashby, plus Barry Carroll catches up on some much missed soapbox time. Patrice Carpentier, Ivor Wilkins, Blue Robinson, Dobbs Davis

Jud Smith is the (mostly) gentle giant of one design keelboat sailing... racing and sailmaking. And in 2018 he moved aft in the J/70 to knock his previous skipper off his perch. Carol Cronin

RORC news - Novel
Eddie Warden-Owen drops the lead

Sailor of the Month
Put these two on a boat and it's time to give up

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Superyacht Challenge Antigua
After four days of exciting racing and fabulous parties the 9th edition of the Superyacht Challenge Antigua came to a conclusion on Sunday 3rd February. The Notice of Race for the 10th edition was announced with the 2020 edition moving to a new date 11-15 March.

"The change in date is better for all sorts of reasons including the fact that in late January accommodation in English Harbour is very much in demand. Next year the regatta will be held just before St. Barths Bucket, when many superyachts are already in race mode, and they can come and have a regatta with us before the bucket." commented Paul Deeth. "The format of racing and parties will be the same but we also have a provision to include a Round Antigua Race, should conditions permit."

The fourth and final race for the 2019 Superyacht Challenge Antigua was held in a light to moderate breeze with flat seas. Principal Race Officer John Coveney selected a shorter course of approximately 18nm for both classes. The final race produced more thrilling action, especially at the start. The 112ft (34m) sloop Spiip was just 3 seconds shy of the starting gun, the 140ft (42m) Frers ketch Rebecca was 2 seconds from the line but the 148ft (45m) Dubois ketch Catalina topped them all, starting just one second before the gun.

The 112ft (34m) Sparkman & Stephens sloop Kawil, scored a perfect four bullets to win the Buccaneers Class. Kawil was the best starter of the entire fleet over the four races and also picked up a barrel of rum as winners of the best theme for the Cook Off. The crew of Kawil received their prizes resplendent in bright pink Caribbean shirts and also won the loud shirt prize from the Caribbean night.

The Gosnell Trophy is the main prize of the Superyacht Challenge Antigua, each boat and the race committee have one vote each for the yacht that has competed in the Spirit of the Regatta, both afloat and ashore. The loudest cheer of the night was reserved for Rebecca, winning the Gosnell Trophy for the first time since competing in the regatta since 2012.

Marsden & Mcgovern Blast Their Way To Tiger Trophy Victory
Round six of the Selden SailJuice Winter Series, the John Merricks Tiger Trophy, attracted 118 boats to the start line despite the horrendous wind chill factor. Old boys Neil Marsden and Jonny McGovern showed the nippers how to race a 420 at warp speed...

Neil Marsden and Jonny McGovern turned in a barnstorming performance to plane their 420 to victory at the John Merricks Tiger Trophy last weekend at Rutland Water. The sixth event in the Seldén SailJuice Winter Series was the toughest yet, with a severe wind chill for three strong-wind back-to-back handicap races on Saturday, followed by a gentler breeze for the pursuit race on Sunday.

There were 137 entries at the Tiger this year. Because of the severe weather down South there were 19 that could not make it North to Rutland, so it was a fleet of 118 that made it to the start line, with 48 classes representing 78 different sailing clubs around the country.

Principal race officer David Wilkins was delighted with the evening meal held in John Merricks' honour. "The Tiger dinner was a great social occasion with over 120 diners enjoying the 'John Merricks favourite meal' and a great talk from Ian Walker. He talked about the history of the Tiger Trophy, told a few stories about their successful partnership, including the last race of the 1996 Olympic Games. Ian explained the work of the JMST and his new RYA role and GBR's Olympic prospects for Tokyo 2020." This was followed by the auction of many goodies provided by Ian, Ben Ainslie, JMST Trust and Selden masts (and others). This raised close to £2000 for the JMST.

With SailRacer providing GPS tracking for the first time at the Tiger Trophy, this event also served as a qualifier for the Great British Sailing Challenge which culminates with a Grand Final at Rutland Water in late September.

List of prize winners at the Tiger Trophy

Overall and winner of the "John Merricks Tiger Trophy" - 420 - Neil Marsden & Jonny McGovern - Blackpool SC
Tony Everard Trophy (Lowest score for fleet races, no discard) - 420 - Neil Marsden & Jonny McGovern - Blackpool SC
John Merricks Pursuit Trophy (Winner of Pursuit Race) - 2000 - Simon Horsfield & Katie Burridge - ASA
Shere Khan Trophy (Best placed helm over 60) - RS400 - Mike Simms & Jack Holden - Carsington SC
Lady Tiger Trophy (First all Female crew) - 420 - Eleanor Keers & Faye Chatterton - ISC
John Merricks Junior Trophy (U16 ) - 420 - Jamie Cook & Will Martin - CBYC
John Merricks Youth Trophy (U19) - 420 - Jack Lewis & Fraser Hemmings - Draycote Water SC
Tiger Club Trophy (Club with most entries excluding Rutland) - Draycote Water SC

Class Winners (excluding winners of above trophies) with 6 or more entries
420 - Aaron Holman & Pablo Garcia (2nd after Neil Marsden)
Fireball - Ian Dobson & Richard Wagstaff
Blaze - Eden Hyland
Osprey - Terry Curtis & Peter Greig
Laser - Eleanor Craig
RS Aero 7 - Richard Pye

Final Race Day & Overall Results For Grenada Sailing Week 2019
Friday 1st February saw the final race day for the 7th edition of the Island Water World Grenada Sailing Week 2019. Once again the fleet saw spectacular conditions out on the water. The balmy early morning calm fortunately gave way to a good breeze as the trade winds kicked in. Competitors made their way to the start line with everything still to race for.

In Racing Class Jason Fletcher's Caribbean 33, Nickatime managed to hold on to first place overall despite being beaten by Claude Granel's Class 40, Credit Mutuel (1st), Pamela Baldwin's, Liquid (2nd) and Rob Butler's, Touch2Play Racing (3rd) in Fridays racing.

In Racer/Cruiser Class Peter Morris' Jaguar continued to dominate with an impressive run of first places, taking top spot in every race on the final day and winning first in class overall.

The classics Galatea and Mah Jong battled it out with the closest racing, with Galatea winning overall by just 1.75 points making it a victory for Judd Tinius for the third year in a row.

Fredrick Sweeny's Attitude, Robbie Yearwood's Die Hard and Stephen Bushe's Hawkeye lead the way in the J24 class. But it was Attitude with 10 wins out of 18 that took the final honours.

The final nights prize giving and the Mount Gay Wrap Up party was held at the upper restaurant of Secret Harbour Marina over looking stunning Mount Hartman Bay. Nearly US$1000 was raised during the event to support the first GSA Youth Sailing Team who competed in the J24 class and had an excellent time out on the water. The Organising Committee wants to thank everyone involved and hopes to see everyone again next year.

Overall Race Day Results for Friday 1st January 2019.
Racing Class
1st Credit Mutuel - Claude Granel - Martinique
2nd Liquid - Pamela Baldwin - Antigua
3rd Touch 2 Play Racing - Rob Butler - Canada

1st Jaguar - Peter Morris - Trinidad
2nd Julie Rule - Peter Evans - Grenada
3rd C MOS - Norman Da Costa - Trinidad

Classic Class
1st Galatea - Judd Tinius - Grenada
2nd Mah Jong - Alex Goldhill - USA
3rd The Blue Peter - Mathew Barker - UK

1st Die Hard - Robbie Yearwood - Grenada
2nd Attitude - Fredric Sweeney - St Lucia
3rd Hawkeye - Stephen Bushe - Trinidad

Overall Results:
1st - Nickatime - Jason Fletcher - Grenada
2nd - Liquid - Pamela Baldwin - Antigua
3rd - Touch2Play Racing - Rob Butler - Canada

1st - Jaguar - Peter Morris - Trinidad
2nd - Julie Rule - Peter Evans - Grenada
3rd - CMOS - Norman Da Costa - Trinidad

Classic Class
1st - Galatea - Judd Tinius - Grenada
2nd - Mah Jong - Alex Goldhill - USA
3rd - Arrluuk - Steve Frary - USA

1st - Attitude - Fredrick Sweeney - St Lucia
2nd - Die Hard - Robbie Yearwood - Grenada
3rd - Hawkeye - Stephen Bushe - Trinidad

18ft Skiffs Australian Championship, Race 5
Click on image for photo gallery.

18ft Skiffs Australian Championship, Race 5 Sydney Harbour: The Smeg team of Michael Coxon, Ricky Bridge and Mike McKensey showed their class in the 17-20-knot North-East wind when they scored a spectacular win in Race 5 of the Australian 18ft Skiff Championship on Sydney Harbour.

Smeg held the lead for most of the race, but had to withstand a powerful finish from Finport Finance (Keagan York, Matt Stenta, Charlie Gundy) before crossing the finish line line 26s ahead of Finport.

Asko Appliances (James Dorron, Harry Bethwaite, Dan Phillips) was always in the top three or four boats throughout the race and finish 58s behind Finport, in third place.

Smeg shares the lead after today's racing with Winning Group (John Winning Jr.), which finished fourth in today's race.

The consistent Bing Lee (Micah Lane) and (Brett Van Munster) were in fifth and sixth places respectively and also feature in the top six placings overall.

After discarding each team's worst result so far, Smeg and Winning Group are on eight points, followed by Asko Appliances on 9, Bing Lee on 10, The Kitchen Maker-Caesarstone (Jordan Girdis) on 13 and on 16.

Following two weeks of extreme wind conditions, today's nor'easter was perfect for all the teams to show their boat speed and boat handling skills.

The race was a great hit-out for all teams in preparation for next month's JJ Giltinan Championshp.

Races 6 and 7 of the championship will be sailed next Sunday, and the Australian 18 Footers League's spectator ferry will be there to follow all the action. The ferry will leave Double Bay public wharf at 2pm..

The Australian 18ft Skiff Championship will continue on the following dates;
Sundays February 10, February 17.

For those who can't make it onto the water:
Live streaming is available on 18FootersTV

The JJ Giltinan Championship will be sailed on Sydney Harbour from March 2-10. -- Frank Quealey

M32 Mast Design Update
Aston Harald has designed and built a new mast with the same overall tube size as the current rigs, but with a different shroud geometry. The hounds have been moved about 2/3 of the way up the mast, towards the gennaker halyard exit point. It is also marginally heavier (2kg) as a result of additional carbon stiffening in the lower section. Aston Harald is looking to achieve a decrease of ~50% of the maximum bending moment in the mast caused by the high loads on the gennaker luff cable. This together with the reinforcement increases resistance against local buckling and ovalization by ~160%.

The total added weight of the rig is ~2kg
Mast junction and spreader fittings moved 500mm upwards.
Forestay attachment and top diamond fitting moved 1130mm upwards.
Mast joint 500mm higher.

The new mast has been tested in November in Sweden and during the first two events of the Miami Winter Series where the new rig was racing against existing rigs. The tests have been positive with the rig showing significant improvements in stability. It is well adjusted to the existing sail plan and has little or no performance differences compared to the current version. Based on this testing, the Class has approved this as the new rig to be delivered from now and going forward. Old rigs will be grandfathered in until further notice. The mast development has been a long process, and the class is grateful to the builder, testing teams and other parties for cooperating. It is always a difficult decision to upgrade equipment in a one-design boat but the class board feels confident that this is the right thing to do for the future development and growth of M32 sailing.

M32 Sail Design Update
With the adoption of the new mast design, the current sail plan is working well, so the class board, together with the builder has decided that there will be no upgrades to the sails for the 2019 Worlds. The class, along with partners, may test new sail designs for future use. Any introduction of new sails will be made with a schedule giving owners sufficient time to evaluate their inventory and place orders in advance of the major championships.

Based on owner interviews and web surveys, it is the opinion of the class that sails should be strict one design with a single supplier with strong quality control. The main and gennaker may be tested and updated separately and in the future may not necessarily have to be from the same supplier.

Happy 90th Birthday Transpac Yacht Club!
Not every yacht club is founded by a man lying down. It was, however, a man lying down on February 3, 1928 who brought forth the Transpacific Yacht Club. We might add that the man was a serial founder. It was true in his profession of radiology, also in his field of passion, sailing, where he had already founded the Newport Harbor Yacht Club, Southern California Yachting Association and Pacific Coast Yachting Association. A contemporary said of him, "Al Soiland never seemed to rest," and that was also true. On February 3, 1928 our man was in a hospital bed recuperating from an appendix operation, and Al Soiland had to be doing...something.

What he started, these many years later, now supports Transpac 50, coming up in July with a record 97 entries so far.

Almost forgotten, but now remembered as a visionary, Dr. Albert F. Soiland, MD had met a certain Clarence MacFarlane in 1906, when the instigator of the Transpacific Yacht Race sailed into Los Angeles Harbor looking for a race home to Honolulu. Well-known history tells us that MacFarlane had expected to join a race starting from San Francisco - he had sailed over to promote a race and his beloved Hawaii - but the earthquake got to San Francisco ahead of him. He arrived to find a city still smoldering, a hotter fact and a hotter topic than yacht racing, so his 48-foot schooner, La Paloma, sailed on to Los Angeles. There the boat, her crew, and the vision of a great ocean race were quickly embraced by South Coast Yacht Club.

On March 1, 1928, at a Transpac race planning meeting chaired by Race Chairman Soiland at the Los Angeles Athletic Club, George Vibert formally moved, and Joe Beek seconded, the formation of Transpacific Yacht Club. Clarence Macfarlane was named the first Commodore in absentia and largely honorary and Al Soiland, Vice Commodore.

Today we have 574 members, and we make the Transpacific Yacht Race happen every two years. To some of us, it's kind of a big deal, and 2019 is looking good. --Kimball Livingston

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