In This Issue
Britain Set To Challenge French Dominance as Transat Jacques Vabre Begins
Melges 32 World Championship
Marlow's Recycled Blue Ocean Dockline Is DAME Award Nominated For 2019
18ft Skiffs Club Championship, Race 1
5000 reasons to celebrate 25 years
Standing it up - Future Fibres - Rig Pro
First record to the Equator for Francis Joyon
Top Tips for the Pit Role on a Cruiser-Racer
SB20 World Championship
Keith Whittemore's Furio Wins J/24 World Championship
Featured Brokerage:
• • Swan 68-004 Explotadot
• • Sciarrelli 50
• • Azuree 46 - Roshini
The Last Word: Raoul Duke

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

Britain Set To Challenge French Dominance as Transat Jacques Vabre Begins
At 13:15 (French time) the Transat Jacques Vabre Normandie Le Havre starting horn was sounded and the 118 skippers in their 59 multi-coloured boats weaved across the start line in front of Cape de la Hève, beating into 12-14 knots of north-easterly wind.

The bi-annual double-handed 4,350-mile race, the longest and toughest transat in the sailing calendar, will take them to Salvador de Bahia in Brazil.

Both IMOCA and Class40 fleets were tightly bunched, but line honours appeared to go to Bureau Vallee II(IMOCA) and Aina Enfance and Avenir, the Class40 favourite.

There should be an intense downwind race in the Channel overnight when the wind will continue to strengthen. Through that time and the morning, as they all exit the Channel, it will be decision time as to whether to go east, west or further west. That could provide an early test of the different trajectories the latest generation foiling IMOCA may take, although Alex Thomson on Hugo Boss has said his priority is finishing not winning, especially after being helicoptered to safety when his boat capsized four years ago. Britain's Samantha Davies, in an older boat but with hugely upgraded foils on Initiatives-Cœur, is keeping an open mind.

"Once we're west of Ushant then we've got to make a decision," she said. "I don't want to make a decision yet because it's not clear enough and sometimes if you decide in your head you influence yourself when you're making further decisions.

"We're pretty open at the moment, (laughs) we're going to have all the sails out on the deck to work out which one we're going to use. We are at one with Initiatives-Coeurand super happy to be finally at sea and heading for Brazil."

The small Class40 have the same dilemma.

"Do we go west fully, for me there is still an option, but it's a bit of a tricky one," Luke Berry (Lamotte - Module Creation) said. "We're still waiting for the info from our weather routers - you're allowed a weather router before you start - so, we'll make our decision sometime tonight. It's not a (Class40) group decision, there are some that are going to go their own way and we're not here to follow the others, but we're not going to do lone cowboy either. It's going to be more of downwind race out of the Channel, but it's do we go up into the Celtic sea or not?

Top ten at midnight France time

Class 40

1. Leyton, Sam Goodchild / Fabien Delahaye
2. Lamotte - Module Creation, Luke Berry / Tanguy Le Turquais
3. Aïna Enfance & Avenir, Aymeric Chappellier / Pierre Leboucher
4. Credit Mutuel, Ian Lipinski / Adrien Hardy
5. Crosscall Chamonix Mont-Blanc, Louis Duc / Aurelien Ducroz
6. Beijaflore, William Mathelin-Moreaux / Marc Guillemot
7. Entraide Marine-Adosm, Charles-Louis Mourruau / Estelle Greck
8. Banque Du Leman, Simon Koster / Valentin Gautier
9. Linkt, Jorg Riechers / Cedric Chateau
10. Made In Midi, Kito De Pavant / Achille Nebout

Multi 50

1. Solidaires En Peloton - Arsep, Thibaut Vauchel-Camus / Fred Duthil
2. Primonial, Sebastien Rogues / Matthieu Souben
3. Groupe Gca - Mille Et Un Sourires, Gilles Lamire / Antoine Carpentier


1. Banque Populaire X, Clarisse Cremer / Armel Le Cleac'h
2. Groupe Apicil, Damien Seguin / Yoann Richomme
3. Arkea - Paprec, Sebastien Simon / Vincent Riou
4. Corum L'epargne, Nicolas Troussel / Jean Le Cam
5. PRB, Kevin Escoffier / Nicolas Lunven
6. Malizia Ii - Yacht Club De Monaco, Boris Herrmann / Will Harris
7. Initiatives-Cœur, Samantha Davies / Paul Meilhat
8. Bureau Vallee 2, Louis Burton / Davy Beaudart
9. Prysmian Group, Giancarlo Pedote / Anthony Marchand
10. Hugo Boss, Alex Thomson / Neal McDonald

Full rankings

* British sailor Alex Thomson today began the Transat Jacques Vabre Normandie Le Havre, his debut race onboard the new HUGO BOSS racing yacht.

Thomson and his co-skipper - fellow Briton Neal McDonald - departed from Le Havre, France this afternoon to begin the double-handed 4,350mile race, which finishes in Salvador, Brazil.

The race marks the first time that fans of Skipper Thomson and his team will witness the new HUGO BOSS boat in competitive action, following the yacht's launch just last month on The River Thames in London.

HUGO BOSS - the name carried by each of the team's previous IMOCA 60 yachts - marks a significant step forward for the ocean racing team. More than two years in design and build, the ground-breaking yacht is the result of 80,000 hours of labour by more than 100 designers, architects, engineers and boat builders. The boat also features new, cutting edge technologies, developed alongside with the team's Technology Partner Nokia Bell Labs.

Thomson remains 'one to watch' in the highly competitive IMOCA class. In 2016 he broke the British record in the solo, non-stop, unassisted Vendee Globe, topping the third-place finish he secured in the 2012-13 edition of the race, which remains the pinnacle event in the IMOCA calendar.

And the British sailor finds himself in good company as he tackles the double-handed Transat Jacques Vabre. His Co-skipper, Neal McDonald, is a seven-time Volvo Ocean Race competitor, and former Olympic sailor, with more than 30 years' experience in professional sailing.

Now Performance Manager at Alex Thomson Racing, McDonald has worked closely alongside Thomson and his team since 2016. The Transat Jacques Vabre, the pair believes, will be a prime opportunity to work together to learn more about their ground-breaking new boat:

"This is a learning and testing opportunity, first and foremost" said Thomson as he prepared to begin the race today. "The race will give us the opportunity to understand just what this boat is capable of, and it will undoubtedly inform the next stages of our development as we head towards the Vendee Globe next year".

The boat has been built with that very goal in mind; to win the 2020 Vendee Globe

Melges 32 World Championship
Photo by Max Ranchi, Click on image for photo gallery.

Melges 32 World Championship La Pericolosa by the German shipowner and helmsman Christian Schwoerer is the new Melges 32 World Champion, crowned after a long four-day "game" played in the light wind conditions offered by the race course of Valencia.

The silver in this World Championship challenge goes to the Italian Calvi Network of Carlo Alberini

The Russian Tavatuy closes his cycle of two consecutive victories in the last two editions of the Melges 32 World Championship, getting the bullet in the last regatta of the series in Valencia and finishing in seventh place in the general standings of the Melges 32 World Championship 2019.

Also the Corinthian ranking the success is for a German team, that of Kilian Holzapfel, which precedes by seven points the British Barbarians of Stuart Simpson and the Turkish Atlas of Mahmut Saral.

Final top five after six races:
1. La Pericolosa, Christian Schwoererer , GER, 17.0
2. Calvi Network, Carlo Alberini, GER, 21.0
3. Pippa, Lasse Pettersson , NOR, 21.0
4. Wilma, Fritz Homann, GER, 24.0
5. Caipirinha, Martin Reintjes, ITA, 25.0

Full results on

Marlow's Recycled Blue Ocean Dockline Is DAME Award Nominated For 2019
Marlow Marlow Ropes are delighted to announce that their eco-conscious Blue Ocean Dockline, made from 100% recycled waste plastic bottles has been nominated for a DAME Award 2019 at the METSTRADE show taking place in Amsterdam this November.

This sustainable innovation, a first in the industry, has seen great enthusiasm from the Leisure Marine market since its launch at the start of 2019.

The Blue Ocean Dockline is exclusive to Marlow's Superyacht & Mooring Series and made available in black or silver white with a Blue Ocean fleck un-spliced on reels and pre-spliced in 12-16mm diameters in lengths from 6m to 12m. The unique construction offers the same popular attributes available with Marlow's other mooring products including good abrasion resistance and shock absorption with soft and supple flexibility and zero strength loss or shrinkage.

The DAME - Design Award is the most significant marine equipment competition of its kind, anywhere in the world. For 29 years, it has focused attention on the art and science of design in all

aspects, from styling, functionality and innovation, through to ease of implementation, practicality of use - and even packaging. It is judged by a panel of top naval architects, boat, interior and industrial designers, plus user experts. To be nominated and then to win a DAME Category and attain the ultimate prize of DAME Award Overall Winner marks a product as being at the pinnacle of design practice in the industry.

For further information, visit Marlow's stand 03:301 at METSTRADE and view the Blue Ocean Dockline in the DAME - Design Award presentation at the I-nnovationLAB in Hall 6

18ft Skiffs Club Championship, Race 1
Click on image for photo gallery.

18 Skiffs Sydney Harbour: Race 1 of the Australian 18 Footers Club Championship, sailed in a 12-14-knot ENE wind on Sydney Harbour today, produced one of the closest and best 18ft Skiff races seen for a few years, and gave the Finport Finance team victory over arch-rival Winning Group.

The Finport Finance crew of Keagan York, Matt Stenta and Angus Williams took the lead at the end of the first lap of the course, and despite losing it to Winning Group at the following windward mark, came back strongly over the final lap of the course to grab a 11s victory.

Winning Group (John Winning Jr., Seve Jarvin, Sam Newton) shared the lead with Finport Finance for two laps of the Easterly course before going down by the narrow margin.

The Oak Double Bay-4 Pines (Aron Everett, Courtney Maher, Charlie Gundy) came back strongly over the second half of the course to finish a further 55s back in third place.

Spectators on the club's ferry weren't disappointed as Finport Finance and Winning Group exchanged the lead on at least three occasions before Finport Finance finally reached the windward mark in Rose Bay with a 3s. advantage as the pair headed for the finish line off Clark Island.

Finport Finance's downwind speed was again clear as the team edged away to cross the line with 11s. to spare.

Spectators all left the water convinced they had seen one of the best races for a few seasons and are looking forward to the next time the fleet contests a round of the Club Championship.

The Australian 18 Footers League's 2019-2020 Season continues next Sunday when the club will stage Race 4 of the Spring Championship. -- Frank Quealey, Australian 18 Footers League

5000 reasons to celebrate 25 years
Click on image to enlarge.

Laser 5000 Join in with the fun at Hayling Island Sailing Club on Saturday 30 November, when a gathering of legends will be swinging the lantern about the good old days of the Five Tonner, the Laser 5000...

Some of twin-wire skiff sailing's early pioneers are set to meet at Hayling Island Sailing Club on 30 November for a Laser 5000 class reunion. When the Laser 5000 burst on to the scene in the early 1990s, it spawned a revolution in high-speed skiff sailing. From the 18ft skiffs in Sydney Harbour to the late-80s adoption of twin trapezes and asymmetric gennakers in the ever-developing International 14, the Laser 5000 came out as an affordable, one-design option for sailors who wanted to turbo-boost their weekend racing.

The early days of the 5000 attracted some names that have gone on to achieve great things elsewhere in the sport, for example:

Adrian Stead (double Olympian), Paul Brotherton (Olympic sailor and Olympic gold medal winning coach), Rob and Peter Greenhalgh (Rob being a Volvo Ocean Race winner and Peter arguably the most successful sailor on the Extreme Sailing Series), and so the list goes on.

The Laser 5000 also created a platform for many mixed crews to compete at the top level of the sport, such as multiple champions Mark and Liz Rushall, Jeff and Claire Davidson, Tracey Covell and Steve Mitchell (both of whom did Olympic campaigns, with Steve crewing Iain Percy to victory at the Star World Championships).

Andy and Ian Budgen were by most measures the most successful crew in the Laser 5000's heyday, and it's Ian who along with Joe Burnie, Steve Norbury, Tracey Covell & Simon Spolton, decided to get the band back together for a celebration.

It was also the Audi Laser Eurocup circuit where Laser Performance salesman Richard Simmonds cut his teeth as a TV commentator. Listen to Richard's commentary from this video from 1994

If you were part of the Laser 5000 scene in the 90s or any time since, view full details on the Facebook Event page "Laser 5000 25 Year Reunion" or email Ian on and book yourself a seat at the table for a three-course slap-up meal, plenty of wine and lots of tall, grossly-inflated stories of heroism from the pioneering days of skiff sailing. It's going to be a fun night.

Standing it up - Future Fibres - Rig Pro
Future Fibres It is perverse that one of the most critical areas of every sailing boat was also one of the last areas where appropriate attention was given to formalising maintenance schedules

From modest daysailiers and round-the- cans racers to the most sophisticated of superyachts, anyone who owns a yacht of any size - or manages one on behalf of someone else - will tell you the thing they value most is the peace of mind that their boat is safe and in good overall working order. That is where RigPro comes into the picture, with its worldwide RigPro Care programme.

While most people can organise maintenance programmes for the hull, engine, deck hardware, and all the other myriad ancillary items dotted around today's yachts, the mast and rigging require professional help from people with highly specific knowledge and expertise.

Full article in the November issue of Seahorse

First record to the Equator for Francis Joyon
IDEC SPORT entered the Southern Hemisphere a day ahead of the record pace Since last Saturday, Francis Joyon has been tackling the Mauritius Route record between Port Louis (Brittany) and Port Louis (Mauritius). He crossed the first virtual mark in this record at 1159hrs UTC on Saturday, setting a new reference time of 7 days, 2 hours and 43 minutes, which was one day shorter than the reference time set ten years ago. This is e first good reason for the skipper of IDEC SPORT to feel pleased. In order to smash the Mauritius Route record, he needs to reach Mauritius by 14th November.

Passing through the Doldrums, Francis took advantage of some fair conditions to send back a video, in which he talks about this part of the journey that is feared by sailors: "A little postcard from the Doldrums, which are not very angry, and where things aren't going too badly," explained the skipper, who crossed this area, which is usually so complicated, without really being held up, before he encountered a squall during the night and then continued his voyage averaging around twenty knots towards the line separating the two hemispheres.

Top Tips for the Pit Role on a Cruiser-Racer
The pit or "strings" is a vital role aboard any boat; but not just mechanically, explains Barry Hayes of UK Sailmakers Ireland. A good pit person is involved in everything. Every sail manoeuvre, the start, on the rail, aiding communication and keeping the plan cohesive from front to back. Although often overlooked; it is actually one of the most important roles on the boat.

Many of us over our time sailing have done the pit and experience the pressure points of the role. Here are some tips to make your life easier and help the pit team, and boat, run like clockwork.

Read the full article by Barry Hayes of UK Sailmakers Ireland in

SB20 World Championship
Hyeres, France: Another day for Robin Follin and Give Me Five FFVoile team with two more bullets and the worst result in 4th, having gained a massive advantage of 20 points. The RC can breathe out now as the SB20 Worlds Championships can constitute the series. Four more races were sailed on Thursday with the overall number of 6 also allowing one discard.

"Day 4 was a great day! We ended up with a 8-4-8-3 for us it's a fantastic result. That means we don't have a result worse that 10th in the Worlds. That's a huge success for me coming from Tasmania - my goal was to be Top 10 and we're well inside Top 10. Beautiful breeze from the shore and compared to the other two days quite flat water. The wind was very shifty and changing quickly from left to right, so it was a very tactical day. Getting off the start line in good shape was really important. We have a great team - I'm sailing here with David Chapman, who's calling tactics, but Louis [Noye] is very capable as well, so they work very well together. It's a very strong fleet here," - said Andrew Smith, skipper of The Imp after this long day.

Having a short distance of less than a mile resulted in having a lot of boats rounding the top mark at the same time. Lots of shouting and collisions and therefore protests, the jury worked late into the night to finish their work. It was a hard day for all, but it's sail racing as we love it!

* High winds cancelled the final day's racing.

Final top five:
1. Give Me 5 FFV, Robin Follin, FRA, 15 points
2. B - Team, Aleksey Lesnikov, RUS, 32
3. The Imp, Andrew Smith, AUS, 44
4. Team FFvoile Esquichade, Bernard Gabriel Skoczek, FRA, 58
5. Aeolus, Brett Cooper, AUS, 59

Full results

Keith Whittemore's Furio Wins J/24 World Championship
Miami, Florida: Keith Whittemore's Furio entered the final two races of the 41st J/24 World Championship with a nine-point advantage, and quickly slammed the door on the competition by dominating race nine of 10. With crew Shelby Milne, Willem Van Waay, Mark Rodgerd and Brian Thomas, the Seattle-based team has been crowned 2019 J/24 World Champions, topping 78 other eager competitors in Miami, FL. Following their bullet to start Saturday, long-time J/24 sailor Whittemore placed eighth in the final contest, five notches better than his closest challenger Rossi Milev's Clear Air. Although 2017 J/24 World Champion Milev placed second behind Whittemore in Saturday's first match, Furio was able to cover in race 10 to officially clinch victory with 41 points to Milev's 57. Chris Stone's Velocidad assembled an impressive Championship for third place (66 points).

Whittemore's highest finish in prior World Championships was third, and he has been a bridesmaid at more than one major Championship. Five J/24 World Champion helmsmen were among this fleet

Seventy-nine teams from 19 nations (Argentina, Australia, Barbados, Brazil, Canada, Chile, France, Germany, Great Britain, Grenada, Hungary, Jamaica, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Sweden, Trinidad and Tobago, and the United States) completed 10 races from October 22-26.

Final top five
1. Furio, Keith Whittemore, USA, 41
2. Clear Air, Rossi Milev, CAN, 57
3. Velocidad, Christopher Stone, USA, 66
4. Nautalytics, Mike Ingham, USA, 68
5. Honeybadger, Travis Odenbach, USA, 78

Full results

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The Last Word
There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. A high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die. -- Raoul Duke

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