In This Issue
Skiff favourites spin low scores into gold
Buhl and Bernaz Take Lead at Laser World Championship
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine
Spain SailGP Team Unveils New Colors
IDEC SPORT getting back on track
Match Conditions Confirmed For The America's Cup
Independent Review into the loss of LCE Showtime and rescue of its crew
Vendee Globe Registrants
Whisper becomes a shout for the GROUPAMA Race
Featured Brokerage:
• • Reichel Pugh 45 - "Katsu"
• • SW100DS L'Ondine
• • Baltic Yachts 73 Pilothouse
The Last Word: Plato

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

Skiff favourites spin low scores into gold
Reigning 49er world champions and Rio 2016 Gold medallists, Peter Burling and Blair Tuke (NZL), bagged enough low scores in the qualification round to lead at the midway point of the 2020 49er World Championship in Geelong, Australia.

The top 25 49er teams go through to gold fleet to fight in the coming three days for the world title, and Burling/Tuke are primed to defend their crown, which would make it six for the canny Kiwis.

49er & 49erFX
Austria's Benjamin Bildstein and David Hussl tallied an equally low score to the frontrunners and the Spanish duo of Diego Botin and Iago Lopez Marra finished a strong third overall.

Worth highlighting are the three Danish teams in the top 15, the best of those Mads Emil Lubeck and Nikolaj Hoffman Buhl. A strong USA presence in the top 20 is being spearheaded by Andrew Mollerus and his 49er crew Ian MacDiarmid who are eighth overall.

In the women's 49erFX the top 25 teams also split off to gold fleet, Great Britain's Charlotte Dobson and Saskia Tidey keeping up their winning moves to be lead boat.

Second in the FX is Tamara Echegoyen/Paula Barcelo (ESP) and third is Anne-Julie Schutt/Iben Nielsby (DEN). A surprise package is the current world championship team of Annemiek Bekkering and Annette Deutz (NED) finding themselves 14th overall.

Nacra 17
John Gimson and Anna Burnet (GBR) are stringing together a set of scores that must be troubling the competition, but they demonstrated they aren't bullet-proof in the third race today. "Two wins; chuffed with that but then in last race we made a stupid mistake. We made a slightly late decision to tack and went swimming. But we are sailing well, and we need to keep this form. We say it's all about the averages and it's not done until the final race." -- Lisa Ratcliff

Live Tracking

Buhl and Bernaz Take Lead at Laser World Championship
Sandringham, Australia: On a day of strong but shifting winds, Germany's Philipp Buhl and Jean-Baptiste Bernaz from France found a little more speed than the rest of their competitors to finish the second day tied at the top of the Laser World Championship standings.

With the 124 sailors split into three fleets of around 40, Buhl and Bernaz each won both their races today to sit on just three points after discarding their worst result from yesterday.

With the discard coming into play after four races, the leader board remains tight. There are just eight points separating the top 10.

Overnight co-leaders Tonci Stipanovic (CRO) and Finn Alexander (AUS) hold equal third position, two points behind the leaders. Both finished mid-teens in the first race of the day, which they could discard, then followed up with a second placing each in race four.

The big movers were Australians Luke "Swifto" Elliott and Matt Wearn who both discarded a sixth place from yesterday. Elliott scored a win and a second place in yellow fleet while Wearn had two seconds behind Philipp Buhl in red fleet.

Provisional Top-10 results after four races:
1. Philipp Buhl, GER, 3 points
2. Jean Baptiste Bernaz, FRA, 3
3. Tonci Stipanovic, CRO, 5
4. Finn Alexander, AUS, 5
5. Luke Elliott, AUS, 6
6. Matt Wearn, AUS, 8
7. Rutger Van Schaardenburg, NED, 8
8. Filip Jurisic, CRO, 9
9. Thomas Saunders, NZL, 10

Results can be found at

Seahorse February 2020
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine

World news
Now this really will be interesting... as Manuard's IMOCA finally breaks cover. Dongfeng team keeps on winning, Francois Gabart maintains radio silence, dodging bullets with Oscar... a new Kiwi toy for 2020, the word according to Clouds and a new Pacific match race. DObbs Davis, Ivor Wilkins, Roger Badham, Patrice Carpentier, Pete Burling And Charles Caudrelier

The perfect versus the good
With a little help from Voltaire America's Cup and Volvo racer Ken Read puts forward some dramatic - but surprisingly obvious - proposals to rewrite the concept of 'on-the-water value'

Giving back
Grant Spanhake is one of the best-known faces on the grand prix circuits - now he has found a way to get all that experience out there for a wider audience. He talks to Dobbs Davis

Bigger brighter faster
Even the best calibrated and most accurate performance instruments in the world are of little use if you can't see what they are saying...

Stonking debut
Dramatic looking, precisely tailored to its target market, well executed and winning as soon as it hit the water...

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Spain SailGP Team Unveils New Colors
Click on image to enlarge.

Madrid, Spain: Two weeks after its official presentation in Madrid, and just two weeks before its debut at the first event of SailGP Season 2 in Sydney, the Spain SailGP Team and TURESPAÑA have announced a partnership agreement that will see the Spanish catamaran showcase the 'Sun of Miró' around the world.

During the last 36 years, the corporate image of Spanish tourism - the 'Sun of Miró' - has become a world reference. The icon that Catalan artist Joan Miró gave to the Government of Spain in 1984 was the first abstract symbol used to identify a country, and is today, one of the logos with greater recognition and admiration worldwide.

Now it becomes the emblem that will adorn the 24-meter wingsail - that powers the flying F50 catamaran - when the Spanish team debuts in the global championship, going headto head against national teams from Australia, Denmark, France, Great Britain, Japan and United States in just a few weeks' time.

Through the partnership, TURESPAÑA - the national tourism agency responsible for marketing Spain's destination in the world and creating value for its tourism sector - will look to the Spain SailGP Team to help promote brand awareness of Spain abroad as it competes at iconic cities around the globe.

The Spanish F50 catamaran will be named Victoria in memory of the Nao Victoria - the Spanish sailing ship which completed the first circumnavigation under the command of Spanish sailor Juan Sebastian Elcano.

The Spain SailGP Team livery will also incorporate the official logo celebrating the 5th centenary of the first circumnavigation, as the project is part of the program for the official commemoration of the historical event, considered the most important maritime challenge of all times.

IDEC SPORT getting back on track
"With the South Atlantic like that, we would never have smashed the Jules Verne Trophy record." That was how Francis Joyon described the situation, still somewhat taken back by the vagaries of the South Atlantic at the start of this 26th day of racing. Yesterday, for the first time, he found himself behind the record pace for the Tea Route. Working hard with his crew, Francis has been busy since picking up the NE'ly trade winds trying to improve on the record pace. Sailing at more than 25 knots out on the water and at almost 16 knots on the direct route, he is now once again steadily increasing his lead and is now keeping a close watch on the vital transition phase to reach the North Atlantic low-pressure systems.

Today, conditions have evolved favourably for IDEC SPORT, well positioned in an 18-knot "very classical" NE'ly trade wind, according to Francis, with the boat sailing on a long regular swell. The gap is widening again as the maxi trimaran is following a highly traditional route for this type of voyage to get back to Europe. "We are sailing on the usual route towards the west of the Azores, where it appears that the weather systems are getting in position to allow us to deal with a transition phase that is not too complicated." Once bitten, twice shy after the recent unusual stretch, Francis refuses to give us any indication of his arrival time.

With 2700 miles to go to the finish, all of the indicators are looking increasingly positive. IDEC SPORT is on a long starboard tack at a very tight angle, which should enable her to clock up almost 600 miles in 24 hours all the way to the Azores.

Live tracker:

Match Conditions Confirmed For The America's Cup
Following a successful mediation, the America's Cup Defender and Challenger of Record have come to an agreement on the Match Conditions for the 36th America's Cup presented by Prada.

The two sides came to a consensus after engaging in an official mediation process run by the America's Cup Arbitration panel chairman David Tillett (AUS).

As part of the agreement, the wind range for racing in the America's Cup Match will be 6.5 to 23 knots.

The agreed racing schedule for the America's Cup Match has two races per day planned for March 6,7,10, 12, 13, 14 and 15. Additional reserve days have been scheduled but the intention is to complete the event on the weekend of March 13/14, weather permitting. Racing is planned from 4pm onwards each race day. The winner of the America's Cup Match will be the first team to score seven points.

The parties also agreed on certain conditions in respect of the Prada Cup due to be issued by June 30 2020. The racing will consist of four Round Robin sessions over January 15, 16, 17, 22, 23, and 24, followed by a repechage round over January 29, 30, 31, and February 2, with the first-to-seven-points Prada Cup Final taking place over February 13, 14, 17, 19, 20, 21, 22.

The following wind range for racing has been agreed:
Round Robins and Repechage: 6.5 to 21 knots
Prada Cup Final: 6.5 to 23 knots

In addition the parties also confirmed Course Location Guidelines for the Race Director when selecting the Auckland racecourse locations for all the Auckland events including the Match for the 36th America's Cup presented by Prada. To view the Settlement Memorandum click here.

The first competitive action of the 36th America's Cup presented by Prada will be in Cagliari, Sardinia from April 23 - 26 at the first of three ACWS regattas taking place during 2020. Further ACWS events will be held in Portsmouth, England on June 4 - 7, and in Auckland, New Zealand in December 17 - 20.

Independent Review into the loss of LCE Showtime and rescue of its crew
Australian Sailing has determined to conduct a review into the LCE Showtime incident and provide a report on the facts and learnings of the incident.

After completing the CYCA's 2019 Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, race entrant LCE Showtime was being delivered back to Sydney when on 5 January 2020 at 0230 hours the keel failed, and the crew activated its emergency beacon. The NSW police service responded to the incident and all crew were rescued.

Australian Sailing has determined that it will conduct a review to provide a report on the factual happenings in respect of the incident. The National Safety Committee has appointed Tim Cox (chair), Chris Zonca and Frank Walker to conduct the Review.

Of particular interest to the review are the processes relating to the original design and modifications to the keel, groundings or impacts, administrative procedures and documentation, actions undertaken by the crew at the time of the incident, and the application of the Australian Sailing Sea Safety Survival Course content to the experiences of the crew of LCE Showtime.

Any interested party may make written submissions to the review by emailing . Parties wishing to be interviewed by the panel should also contact Australian Sailing at the same email.

A copy of the Terms of Reference for the Review can be read here.

Vendee Globe Registrants
Romain Attanasio joins the registrants
As the days go by, the list of registrants grows. Today it is Romain Attanasio who joins the circle of runners who validated their entire route. For the Pure skipper , it is also the possibility of guaranteeing his partners that he will be well at the start of the 2020 edition, even if he is still missing a third of his budget. Validating your registration also means sending a sign to potential new sponsors of your determination to continue the adventure until the end.

Miranda Merron, official registrant
The British sailor becomes the sixth to be officially listed on the Vendée Globe. This inscription, as she likes to emphasize, is also the fruit of the work she has been doing for several years with Halvard Mabire. Between the two of them, they have crossed almost all the seas of the planet and, if Miranda is the lucky one elected to line up for the Vendée Globe, there is no doubt that the benevolence of her fellow Normand will be able to accompany him in this adventure. Solitaire is a team effort.

Due to lack of budget, Denis Van Weynbergh gives up
He hoped to become the first Belgian navigator to complete a Vendée Globe. Alas, for lack of financial means, Denis Van Weynberg is forced to give up participating in the adventure for 2020. To realize dream care, he had acquired the sailboat from Nandor Fa. It will be necessary to wait until 2024 to see his candidacy materialize.

Following his withdrawal, only 35 are still in the race to qualify, including Clément Giraud who, to remain in the list of applicants, should qualify aboard his monohull ravaged by a fire in the port of Haven.

Whisper becomes a shout for the GROUPAMA Race
Retirement has afforded David Griffith the freedom to pick and choose the ocean races he fancies will best suit the Sydney-based Reichel/Pugh 62 called Chinese Whisper he jointly owns with Rupert Henry. The unique New Caledonia's GROUPAMA Race is now marked in the team's calendar with their recent entry.

A demanding South Pacific adventure of 654 nautical miles, the GROUPAMA race is biennial and in 2020 the event returns, timed to follow on from the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia's PONANT Sydney Noumea Yacht Race . The CYCA's longest bluewater race of 1,064nms made a comeback in 2018, drawing an encouraging fleet of 22 and feeding good international numbers into the GROUPAMA race that year.

Under the direction of sailing master Michael Coxon and a top-notch crew including Stacey Jackson and Tom Braidwood, Chinese Whisper scored seventh on line honours and fifth overall in the 75th anniversary Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race last December. The boat underwent some mods prior to the big race, including a longer bow sprit and the bulb moved aft, which improved performance says Griffith.

Following Port Lincoln Race Week, where Rupert Henry will step aboard, Chinese Whisper will be tweaked again. Decisions are being finalised between the owners, original designers Judel Vrolijk and Coxon on potential changes with the key objective to remove weight. "It's a 10 year-old boat so we'll do what's possible to make it as relevant as we can before the two long races, without penalizing ourselves on IRC handicap too much."

Chinese Whisper is the largest entry so far among a joint New Caledonia and Australian field, which is expected to expand to New Zealand and include the 2018 line honours winner Miss Scarlet.

As well as fully crewed (minimum of 3 crew) monohull and multihull categories, organising club Cercle Nautique Calédonien is, for the first time since the debut GROUPAMA Race in 2008, offering a shorthanded division (minimum of 2) plus a cruising division.

Both the current monohull and multihull race records were established in 2016. -- Lisa Ratcliff

<> How to follow the Groupama Race:

Event website

Featured Brokerage

2011 Reichel Pugh 45 - "Katsu". 215000 EUR. Located in Italy

KATSU offers a huge amount of potential on the race track, whilst not overly-compromising on comfort below decks. Great successes under ORC and IRC, she is a potent weapon offshore and is a much more forgiving platform, that is far more manageable compared to the newest breed of flyers.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Sam Pearson - Ancasta Race Boats
+64 277733717
+44 2380 016582


2008 Southern Wind SW100DS L'Ondine. 4,650,000 VAT Paid EUR. Located in Palma de Mallorca, Spain.

L’Ondine is the eighth example of the hugely successful SW100 series and has been maintained with exceptional care by her original owners since delivery in December 2008.

Used only for private family cruising with occasional regatta appearances, L’Ondine is a tried and tested bluewater performance cruiser that has carried her owners on adventures throughout the Mediterranean, Caribbean and North Atlantic.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Southern Wind Shipyard (Pty) Ltd
Salita Dinegro 7/1
16123 Genoa Italy

Tel. +39 010 570 4035


1999 Baltic Yachts 73 Pilothouse 73. 1,160,000 EUR. Located in Viareggio, Italy.

Stunning pilothouse Baltic from Judel Vrolijk & R&J Designs. Maintained regardless of cost and updated/refitted in recent seasons. A very special custom yacht at a very appealing price.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Alex Grabau
Tel: +44 (0)1590 673715

See the collection at

The Last Word
If you do not take an interest in the affairs of your government, then you are doomed to live under the rule of fools. -- Plato

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