In This Issue
The Vendee Globe Remains On Course
World Sailing Puts Staff On Furlough ‘To Ensure Long-Term Financial Viability’
You keep our world moving
The Ocean Race: Yoann Richomme on the 2021-22 route
Yacht Racing Podcast Episode 13 - Nicolai Sehested
French Olympic Week (SOF) 2020 goes virtual
Happy Hour with Stretch & Stir Fry Episode 1
America's Cup: United States challenger reveals 'precarious' state
Explore J/Boats’ Elegance Range
Eric Mergenthaler
Letters to the Editor
Featured Brokerage:
• • Swan 82-010 Grey Goose
• • 85Ft Racing Sloop TAHIA
• • MTC28 - Carbon Trimaran
The Last Word: Dan Quayle

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

The Vendee Globe Remains On Course
The health crisis that has shaken society for a month is forcing those who are involved in the worlds of sports and business to adapt amidst this period of uncertainty.

The address of the French President on April 13th did however lay the foundations for an exit from this containment and suggests a possible recovery period from the middle of July.

As things stand today this latest information allows the Vendee Globe to remain on course with the objective remaining to have the start from Les Sables-d'Olonne on November 8. "The technical and sporting programmes of contenders for the around the world solo race without stopover and without assistance has been disturbed by this unprecedented crisis. We are particularly sensitive to this." said Yves Auvinet, president of SAEM Vendee. "For several weeks now, SAEM Vendee has been in very regular contact with skippers and all the protagonists of the Vendee Globe, to discuss these issues and propose solutions. Our will is to be able to give the start of this ninth edition on the 8th November in the best possible conditions, while remaining very attentive to developments of the situation".

The two solo Transatlantic races initially planned this Spring for the Globe Series championshop this spring should have allowed some skippers to qualify and others to test their monohull after winter modification work. The IMOCA class and the department of Vendee, a major partner in the race, are working to finalize the adaptation of the New York - Vendee Les Sables-d'Olonne, a general dress rehearsal before the Vendee Globe and therefore an essential race for the preparation of the skippers. Its format will be revealed soon.

World Sailing Puts Staff On Furlough ‘To Ensure Long-Term Financial Viability’
World Sailing president Kim Andersen has announced the immediate furloughing of almost all World Sailing staff for at least three weeks “to ensure the long-term financial viability” of the organisation.

In addition, higher paid staff are being requested to take a 20% pay cut until the end of the year.

In a statement released yesterday evening (Tuesday 14 April), Andersen confirmed that the board of World Sailing - whose staff are employed through a UK-based company - is taking advantage of financial supports made available by the UK Government to support salary costs during the Covid-19 pandemic.

From today, Wednesday 15 April, until Wednesday 6 May, almost all staff are on “furlough leave” and will not be permitted to engage in any work for World Sailing. Up to 80% of their salaries will be funded by the UK Government, with the difference covered by World Sailing.

“After 6 May, the board will review the position with the senior management team and decide whether furlough leave is extended or whether staff will return to work,” Andersen said.

You keep our world moving
A love letter to our production workers, partners and customers:

We all do not know what the future brings but at the moment, during this difficult times, we are still able to keep our production running. Our great colleagues in our production facilities in Austria, Czech Republic, USA and Thailand as well as our partners who stand by the Teufelberger Group and believe in our products and service excellence make this possible.

Thank you for your effort. Thank you, Dekuje!

With this video we want to show you our appreciation:

Of course, comprehensive safety measures have been taken in all plants to keep our employees save.

The Ocean Race: Yoann Richomme on the 2021-22 route
In the latest of our series of articles on the reactions of past and current competitors to the route for the 2021-22 edition of The Ocean Race we hear from first time round-the-world skipper Yoann Richomme, skipper of the Mirpuri Foundation Racing Team - a confirmed entry in the VO65 class.

Based in Lorient, the hotbed of French ocean racing, Richomme is no stranger to offshore racing at the highest level, having won the Class 40 division in the 2018 Route du Rhum and scored two victories in the highly competitive La Solitaire du Figaro (2016 and 2019).

His second La Solitaire win - which elevated him to an exclusive club of only eight two-time winners of the singlehanded one-design event - was all the sweeter in that he was a last-minute substitution for Charles Caudrelier (winning skipper in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean race).

So what was the rookie Ocean Race skipper’s first reaction when he saw the route for his first around the world campaign?

“I was glad to see quite a standard route and nothing too crazy,” he told us. “I was especially eager to know which route we would have to take to get to Shenzhen. We knew there could be a possibility of going all the way around Australia, that would have been really long.

Full interview in

Yacht Racing Podcast Episode 13 - Nicolai Sehested
Our guest on Episode 13 of The Yacht Racing Podcast is Danish yachtsman Nicolai Sehested - a sailor who, although he has just reached the age of thirty, has already established himself as a major figure on the international professional sailing scene.

Although he does not come from classic sailing family, Sehested began his competitive sailing career in Optimists before making his professional debut as a skipper on the World Match Racing Tour.

From there he leapfrogged to ocean racing with two notable round the world Ocean Race campaigns - first with Team Vestas Wind and then with team AkzoNobel - before this season joining the heady high-octane world of the SailGP circuit, as helmsman of the Danish Rockwool team.

Justin Chisholm spoke to Shested via Zoom from his family’s farm in Denmark - where like the rest of us he was waiting for an end to the COVID-19 lockdown.

French Olympic Week (SOF) 2020 goes virtual
The organisers of the Hyères Olympic Week have taken the tough decision to cancel the event, scheduled from 18 to 25 April. All possible options for a later date in the 2020 calendar have been scrutinised but none seemed viable to organise an event lining up over 600 boats from 60 different countries in technical and health conditions the organisers have guaranteed for more than five decades.

As for today, the organisers are working on the 2021 edition together with their sponsor Toulon Provence Mediterranee and with World Sailing for an outstanding edition next year.Just weeks away from the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, the Semaine Olympique de Hyères will already be in “Paris 2024 mode” as the represented classes will be more than in Japan, including the windfoils, the mixed kitefoils, the mixed 470 and one double mixed offshore event, that is all the classes scheduled for Paris 2024.

The 2021 edition already promises to be exceptional and very animated with a full race village open to the public and set in the port of Hyères.

Save the date then from 17 through 24 April, 2021.

The Virtual SOF, enter now!

From 20 to 26 April, everyone is invited to take part in the Virtual SOF, for the first time open to everyone. Every day you will be able to test your sailing skills on a Nacra 17 or 49er.

To enter, please click here:

Happy Hour with Stretch & Stir Fry Episode 1
NEW from the Global Sailing Network! Happy Hour with Stretch and Stir Fry...

Each week we will welcome a world class sailor to give Stretch and Stir Fry (two sailing legends) their views on sailing whilst telling us a few yarns, giving you a light-hearted insight to their world and lives before offering their more serious thoughts on the latest news and also the big issues in sailing.

Whilst we are no longer allowed on the water, consider this to be a great chance to sit back, crack open a bottle of rum or rose and enjoy the ramblings of two hosts whose conversational shortcomings will hopefully be rescued by their stellar list of sailing hero guests.

To lead you to the start line, you will have to put up with Stretch, an overly tall sailor, who has managed to be the handbrake on some of the world's finest racing yachts, but his lack of sailing prowess and 'pod know how' will hopefully be rescued by his multi talented co-host Stir Fry.

For those of you who don't know Stir Fry's sailing background, he is a true sailing all-rounder with 15 world championships to his name. He has won in the Etchells, J24, Melges 24 and TP52 as well as more recently back to back Dragon World Titles. He has raced for the Louis Vuitton Series at the America's Cup and finished runner up in the '92 Olympic trials. He is not just an inshore softy though, as he has also managed to be a Fastnet, Middle Sea, Giraglia and Tour de France a la Voile winner.

Our first guest for Happy Hour is Ian Walker MBE -- Listen Here

America's Cup: United States challenger reveals 'precarious' state
American Magic have revealed the "precarious" state of their America's Cup campaign as restrictions from the coronavirus pandemic threaten preparations.

It's a scenario all teams will be facing as time ticks away on the scheduled Prada Cup challenger series and America's Cup match in Auckland early next year.

The health crisis has already seen two world series regattas in Italy and England cancelled but it's the build of the second generation of these radical boats to be sailed in Auckland that is now a real concern.

The American, Italian and British teams need to get their boats built and in Auckland in time to get decent training on them ahead of a scheduled world series regatta in December that will be the only chance to have the 75-foot monohulls in a real racing situation ahead of the Cup action.

In a live video chat with Cup stalwart Gary Jobson on Friday, Hutchinson said they were still managing to work on the build of their second boat in Rhode Island but that was in "a reduced capacity" because of health and safety issues.

Explore J/Boats’ Elegance Range
J/Composites sales manager Fred Bouvier will lead the interactive live interview from Les Sables-d’Olonne that will feature the J/112e, J/97e and J/122e.

Key Yachting is the exclusive distributor for J/Boats and Gran Soleil in the UK and Ireland, and former Olympic helmsman Mark Mansfield is the agent for Ireland.

Eric Mergenthaler
Three-time Olympian in the Finn and 1992 Finn Gold Cup winner Eric Mergenthaler has died following a bicycle accident in Valle de Bravo, Mexico. He was just 56.

Eric represented Mexico in three Olympic Games. He placed 18th in Los Angeles in 1984, 13th in Seoul in 1988 and then 19th in Barcelona in 1992, where he was the World Champion after winning the Finn Gold Cup in Cadiz, earlier that year.

A legend of the Finn class, he trained with many of the top sailors of the day and became one of the most popular Finn sailors in the 1980s and early 1990s. He supported himself through his sailing career, with no professional equipment and ended up being a world champion.

He also won the silver medal at the 1989 Finn Gold Cup, the bronze medal at the 1990 Finn Gold Cup, and the silver at the 1988 European Championship.

After the Barcelona Olympics he focussed on family and business and became a very successful businessman in Mexico, although he never stopped practicing sports.

The accident on Saturday left him with serious injuries and he was operated on before being moved to an intensive care unit. His family, including his four daughters, were able to see him before he passed away on Wednesday, following complications.

Eric Mergenthaler was born on September 2, 1963 and died on April 15, 2020. The Finn Class sends its sincerest condolences to his family and friends.

RIP Eric Mergenthaler

Letters To The Editor -
Letters are limited to 350 words. No personal attacks are permitted. We do require your name but your email address will not be published without your permission.

* From Malcolm McKeag:

How very comforting to learn that I, as a British tax payer and along with all my fellow British taxpayers, am now funding World Sailing. Makes one proud to be a Brit.

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2001 85Ft Racing Sloop TAHIA. 389000 EUR. Located in La Rochelle, France

Under the name of Adrien with Jean Luc Van den Heede as skipper, she has been holding the record single handed non stop around the world since 2004, in 122 days from East to West against the wind. Since she was sold to Maud Fontenoy who achieved a fantastic non stop single handed voyage.

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MTC28 - Carbon Trimaran. 68,000 GBP. Located in South Devon, UK.

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The Last Word
I was recently on a tour of Latin America, and the only regret I have was that I didn't study Latin harder in school so I could converse with those people. -- Dan Quayle

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