In This Issue
At the Sharp End: Comanche approaches!
2021 Finn World Masters
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine
The Red Mist falls in THE splASHES
Long journey home: the stranded sailboats in a race to beat the hurricanes
The Skipper is Responsible for Creating a Culture of Safe
Shortlisted For New IKA Youth Foil Racing Class
Industry News
Featured Brokerage:
• • Swan 82-010 Grey Goose
• • Maxi Dolphin MD65
• • Victory '83
The Last Word: George Carlin

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

At the Sharp End: Comanche approaches!
I was staring down the barrel at a yacht aiming for our press RIB at 20+ knots. An enthusiastic photo boat driver on the Costa Smeralda took our request to go wide and get ahead of the fleet as a 'licence to thrill'! Instead of taking a wide berth the Italian gave his 300hp inboard engine full throttle ahead and began to pick off one Wally yacht after another as they reached past the Isola Soffi. Concern spread among the photographers. Another request to peel off from the fleet was lost to the wind.

Our hope had been to see the bow of Comanche a few hundred feet from in front but as I turned the 33 metre weapon was flying along and we were in its sights. Within seconds the RIB was sandwiched between a Wally and the fast-approaching iconic maxi yacht. Photographing through my 24-70mm medium lens the red hull quickly filled the frame and the whites of the mastman's eyes drew closer. 'Safety First' is my mantra. A final call to our driver as I dropped my camera into my pelican case, snapped it shut, reached for the handle but thought better of it. So instead turned, made a path through the crowd to the front of the centre console. To be fair had Comanche hit us, no one would have been left unscathed. Fortunately for the expert helming of Ken Read we lived to photograph the ensuing race. There is never a dull day on the sea and I wouldn't I change it! -- Ingrid Abery

More images can be seen at:

At the Sharp End

2021 Finn World Masters
The International Finn Masters Committee is delighted to announce that the 2021 Finn World Masters will be held in Medemblik, The Netherlands.

Following the cancellation of the 2020 Finn World Masters at Port Zelande, and then the postponement of the 2021 Finn World Masters in Puntala, the Dutch Finn class immediately began to work on finding a venue for 2021 to complete their commitment to host the Finn World Masters.

It will happen 13 years after the last time the Finn World Masters was held in Medemblik. In 2008, many Finn Masters will remember a week of amazing tropical weather, great racing and wonderful hospitality.

The dates will be the traditional Masters week of 21-28 May. Planning is already underway and more details will be published as soon as they become available.

The 2020 Finn World Masters was supposed to be the 50th Anniversary event, but all the celebrations have now been put back to 2021.

The 2008 Finn World Masters in Medemblik was the biggest fleet up to that time with 229 entries. -- Robert Deaves

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

Seahorse Magazine

Quiet genius
The next subject for Seahorse's latest series on the great yacht designers should perhaps have been the first. Our former editor Julian Everitt looks at the myriad influences that Ericus Van De Stadt has had on the sport, many of which continue to play a part today

Twenty years, 40 years. Just keep an eye out for those anniversaries. Rob Weiland

A perfect fit
When one of the world's most successful software magnates goes TP52 racing you can only expect the electrons to draw their attention. Jonas Witt and Andi Robertson

More than a racing stripe
When the owner of the slippery but tippy 60ft CBTF design Wild Joe decided to speed up his craft he certainly went for it. Gordon Kay

ORC - Old dog new tricks
Addressing one of the biggest measurement challenges of them all... Andy Claughton

Special rates for EuroSail News subscribers:
Seahorse Print or Digital Subscription Use Discount Promo Code SB2

1yr Print Sub: €77 - £48 - $71 / Rest of the World: £65

1yr Digital Sub for £30:

Discounts shown are valid on a one year subscription to Seahorse magazine.

The Red Mist falls in THE splASHES
There's nothing quite like the rivalry between the British and Australians in sport, exemplified in cricket, rugby and sailing; so with eSailing taking such a hold in the past couple of months during lockdown, it was inevitable that the best sailors the respective nations had to offer would be raring to face each other on the virtual race course. I couldn't resist the challenge of setting this up, and so the inaugural splASHES came to fruition.

Setting these events up takes many people in our worldwide team at and I chatted with the British sailors who had already been racing in The Lockdown Cup, our Australian editor John Curnow contacted Tom Slingsby and Tom Burton to sow the seed of the idea with them and Rory Heron contacted former Ashes winning England cricket captain Sir Andrew Strauss to perform the all-important coin-toss to decide who had the home advantage in the virtual venues, Sydney Harbour and Portsmouth.

For the livestream of the racing we needed a well-known Australian to co-commentate, so who else could I ask but Nic Douglass, the Sailor Girl herself, who jumped at the opportunity and streamed the event live to her huge social media following. We then contacted a few legends of sailing for some good-luck messages to the teams:


The teams were finalised, availability checked and after a frantic Tuesday of setting up the logistics, the race was set for 8am Portsmouth time and 5pm Sydney time, and the clash was on. The Australian team was packed with Olympic gold medallists, America's Cup winners and World Champions, consisting of Tom Slingsby, Tom Burton, Kyle Langford, Matt Chew and Ted Hackney it was clear they weren't messing about. The British team had many names from The Lockdown Cup with Luke Patience, Ben Saxton, Stu Bithell, Sam Whaley and Jonny McGovern up to face the challenge.


Race 1 and 2 went to the Brits, so the Aussies mooted the idea of a double points final race in the F50s and then even suggested a 'Super Sunday' winner-takes-all style final race. Luke, on behalf of the Brits, agreed to double points, but still the Brits prevailed to take THE splASHES with 94 points to the Aussies 126.

Long journey home: the stranded sailboats in a race to beat the hurricanes
With a 3,600-mile non-stop solo sail across the Atlantic ahead of him, Garry Crothers is a little anxious. But he has to get moving before the hurricane season. "I'm in a bad place here, I don't have any choice," he says.

Like many living aboard their sailing boats, he has been stranded at sea by Covid-19. The 64-year-old Irishman has been on Kind of Blue, his 43ft aluminium boat, for two months, hardly touching land. He's anchored off Sint Maarten, in the Caribbean - a less pleasing prospect than it sounds. Hurricane season officially starts on 1 June and the island, as Crothers is acutely aware, is "bang in the middle of the hurricane belt" - hit hard by Dorian last year, and Irma in 2017. Neighbouring countries and islands that might afford protection are shut. Crothers' only safe option is a solo sail home to Ireland.

In one sense he's not alone. An estimated 500 boats are crossing the Atlantic to Europe in the coming weeks. From the South Pacific to the Indian Ocean, thousands of people are trying to sail home or find shelter.

While stranded cruise and navy ships have made headlines, far less attention has been paid to the plight of hundreds of families and individuals on small boats. As countries closed borders, numerous vessels were refused entry to their port of call. Even boats that had been safely anchored before the pandemic were suddenly considered a foreign yacht in territorial waters. Sailors in Portugal and Spain were ordered to return to home ports in the United States or Canada - a dangerous proposition without planning.

Susan Smillie's full article in The Guardian

The Skipper is Responsible for Creating a Culture of Safe
The Cruising Club of America has published guidance entitled "Creating a Culture of Safety: The Skipper's Responsibility" that spotlights the skipper's overriding responsibility for the safety of boat and crew. The advisory, which takes the form of a series of recommendations, emphasizes creating a culture of safety aboard the boat as the only logical means of successfully fulfilling the skipper's responsibility.

According to John Robinson, chair of the CCA's Safety & Seamanship Committee, "We wrote the paper because of our concern about the number of sailing safety incidents over the last few years that resulted in loss of life and near losses - all of which appeared preventable with appropriate preparation, training and decision-making at sea."

"As many sailors look to the CCA for advice regarding safety at sea," Robinson adds, "we felt that the highest level of advice should start with the skipper, before setting sail, and should draw attention to the broad scope of issues that their leadership role requires."

The recommendations can serve as a skipper's checklist covering four areas - leadership, boat and equipment preparation, crew training, and best practices at sea-which together help to build a strong culture of safety.

Three Foil Options And Three Kite Options Shortlisted For New IKA Youth Foil Racing Class
The International Kiteboarding Association launched a tender process earlier this year which invited manufacturers to tender for a new youth foil racing class aimed at boys and girls under the age of 16 years.

The key criteria for this new class are as follows:

Strict One Design for all components
Long term committment of class and builder in order to protect investment of MNAs, clubs and parents
Equipment readily available on the market, and with good distribution
IKA received eight compliant bids. The following equipment has been shortlisted for Phase 2 of the tender process as being those who closely mirror the specific technical criteria for the new class.

Hull and Foil:
F-One (Stig / IC6)
Moses (T65 / K91-590)
Taaroa (Peak 130 / Joy 90)

Cabrinha (AV8)
F-One (Bandit)
Ozone (Edge V10)

Following shortlisting, in Phase 2, IKA will now further evaluate the successfull bidders on the basis of professional and technical qualification with the aim to select equipment by August 2020.

Industry News
One very lucky boat owner has won an incredible year's free berthing with MDL at its Northney Marina.

Entering MDL's Win a Free Berth competition online last year, the winner has just been notified of his fantastic win. "I am over the moon," says Mr Phillips. "Not only do I get a free berth, it gives me the opportunity to move my boat closer to the Solent, where most of my boating is done."

Having started boating ten years ago while living in Surrey, Mr Phillips and his family subsequently moved closer to the south coast. Passionate about being on the water the family, with the occasional friend in tow, spend many days onboard their 29ft motor cruiser visiting Priory Bay on the IOW to enjoy lunch while at anchor.

Currently mooring his powerboat in Chichester Harbour, Mr Phillips is delighted to be moving to an MDL marina. "Not only are the locations of MDL's marinas perfect for boating in the Solent, they have fuel too,' continues Mr Phillips. "They've also got a great choice of other marinas for occasional overnight berthing."

Northney Marina is a Five Gold Anchor marina situated on the north shore of Hayling Island. Within easy reach of historic Portsmouth and the Solent, Mr Phillips and his family will be able to enjoy many days out on the water and stay at MDL's marinas in the River Hamble, Southampton and further afield for free with MDL's Freedom Berthing.


While the global marine industry awaits the full impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the International Council of Marine Industry Associations (ICOMIA) reports the US is expecting a 50% reduction in sales for 2020, the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) has released its first 2019 Statistical Abstract for the sailboat sector.

Final 2019 data shows 4,800 new sailboats were sold last year, a 16% decrease from 2018, but level with 2017 sales. Sailboats accounted for 2% of total new boat unit sales in the US last year.

"The sailboat category tends to have some volatility from year-to-year and in 2019 we saw a dip in the high-volume segment under 20ft which comprises 87% of total sailboat unit sales," said Vicky Yu, NMMA's director of business intelligence, in a statement from the trade group.

Yu said that sales of vessels over 46ft were up some 25%. "However, we expect COVID-19 will have a dampening effect on sales in 2020," she said.

The 2019 Sailboat Sales Trends report includes production and retail unit sales data, export and import unit sales by length, and estimated total annual retail dollar sales and by length.

The NMMA intends to remain with its release schedule for remaining sections of the 2019 Recreational Boating Statistical Abstract, which includes Boat and Engine Exports and Imports; Cruiser, Watersport, Off-Shore Fishing Boat and Trailer Sales Trends, Powerboat Sales Trends; Pre-owned Boat Market; Total Industry Sales by Category and State.

Total boat registrations for 2019 are expected in June, followed by the full report in July.


Spanish industry association ANEN has released new figures showing a 77% drop in boat registrations for the month of April and a 37.3% drop in registrations for the first four months of the year. All lengths and sub-sectors of pleasure boats have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Tourist demand for boat rentals, for instance, were booming up until February. This sector alone fell by 79% in April and by 42.9% in the first four months of the year.

"The sector is in danger," says Carlos Sanlorenzo, ANEN's secretary general. "The accumulated losses in the months of March and April, just when the nautical season begins, make us visualise a scenario like the one we lived through during the 2008 crisis in which nearly 70% of the business fabric of the sector was lost, with the consequent loss of employment and productivity."

The Spanish nautical sector is requesting urgent support measures to encourage the consumption of nautical activities as a tourism proposal to maintain its 82,000 jobs and the productivity that this sector contributes to the national economy (around €12bn on total effective production).

To tackle the situation as soon as possible and avoid the loss of employment generated by nautical activities (construction of pleasure boats, nautical sports facilities, boat rentals, maintenance and repair, nautical schools, consulting services and others), the Spanish nautical sector, under the umbrella of ANEN, is asking the government, as a priority, to introduce fiscal measures to encourage the consumption of recreational boating as a tourism activity.

According to the latest statistics, the number of boats from 6m-8m (85.2% of the market) that were registered in the first four months of 2020 were down by 39%. In terms of boat types, the greatest drop was for semi-rigid inflatable boats (-50.2%), followed by motorboats (-40.7%) and folding inflatable boats (-40.4%).

The rental market, the market with the best performance until February, collapsed in April with a drop of 79% and 42.9% in the first four months of the year.

The registration of boats for rental use dropped from 385 between January and April 2019, to 220 carried out in the same period of 2020.

ANEN's latest statistics were taken from the Pleasure Craft Market Report for the period January-April 2020, edited by ANEN and based on data provided by the Directorate General of the Merchant Marine.


South African boatbuilding yards reopened on Monday subject to a 50% staffing limit and strict social distancing protocols. This follows an easing of the country's 'hard lockdown' - from the maximum level five to level four - to allow a partial reopening of the economy beyond essential services.

Government increased the maximum allowable staffing level from 20% to 50% following a successful appeal by the South African Boat Builders Export Council (SABBEX). The move was made possible by finalisation of rigorous Risk Adjusted Measures for workplace safety in light of the coronavirus pandemic, which has yet to peak in South Africa.

SABBEX executive manager Vanessa Davidson commended government for successfully balancing the twin imperatives of flattening the coronavirus infection curve and resuscitating the local economy. "Government does not have an easy task at the moment, but as a sector we are immensely grateful for the opportunity to return to work with 50% of staff," Davidson said. "This return to work will be under strict health and safety risk mitigation measures to ensure that despite opening up our factories, we do not contribute to any further spread of the Covid-19 virus. This opportunity to return to half of production will ensure we don't lag behind our main global competitors, France, and I am certain it will mean the survival of a number of SMEs in the supply chain around boatbuilding who might otherwise not have weathered the storm of continued lockdown," she said.

Some of the country's major yards also commended the government's decision and committed themselves to rigorous staff testing and workplace distancing. Nexus Yachts general manager Roger Paarman said the St Francis Bay yard had a full order book, and two Balance 526 hulls would soon be launched.

Gemini Marine sales and marketing manager Gerhard Neethling said the company would keep most of its admin staff working at home to allow more production staff to return to the factory floor. "I understand completely that there is a 'new normal' for all of us, but we will be doing our utmost best to get the business back to normal," Neethling said in a company news update.


Cowes Harbour Commission (CHC) is pleased to announce that Clive Blount, Phil Hagen and Jason Losty, have recently been appointed to the Cowes Harbour Commission Board.

The three volunteer Commissioners have joined the CHC Board following an advertising and competitive recruitment process earlier in the year. Clive Blount and Phil Hagen have been appointed for a term of three years, effective from 1st May 2020. The Board also co-opted Jason Losty as a Commissioner for a period of 12 months.

Clive Blount spent 37 years as an aircrew officer in the Royal Air Force, retiring as a Group Captain in 2017. Whilst serving, Clive also ran the offshore division of the RAF Sailing Association and represented the RAF on the board of the Joint Services Transglobe Expedition. Since retiring from the RAF, Clive has been instructing RYA courses and MCA Boat Master candidates, having been a powerboat instructor since 2004. Clive is a Fellow of the Royal Institute of Navigation.

Phil Hagen had a long career running companies in the global telecom and technology sector, and is the founder and CEO of a company specialising in behavioural assessments to the sales profession and contact centre industry. Since 2013, he has also held the position of non-executive director for a London-based executive search company. Having lived in Cowes since 2004, he is a keen yacht racer and an RYA National Race Officer.

Jason Losty started his Merchant Navy Career in 1998, serving on oil tankers and ferries. He subsequently moved to the oil and gas industry, fulfilling a variety of roles at sea and in shoreside management. He changed career path in 2017 to become a Southampton Pilot, making Cowes his home. Jason grew up in Cork, Ireland and enjoys racing small keelboats and cruising.

Meanwhile, Commissioners Andrew Cooper and Nick Elderfield have stood down from the Board after serving two three-year terms and one three-year term respectively. At the April 2020 Board meeting, Chairman David Riley and Harbour Master Capt. Stuart McIntosh thanked the retiring Commissioners for their valuable contribution to CHC and the harbour's strategic management and sustainable development.

Featured Brokerage
Raceboats Only 2006 Swan 82 'Grey Goose'. 2,950,000 EUR VAT Paid. Located in Valencia, Spain

This Nautor's Swan 82 FD "Grey Goose" has been built for two defined missions. One is luxurious and short handed family cruising with performance but without any stress on deck. The second mission is competitive racing in all conditions inshore as well as offshore and even transatlantic racing. She is not a pure race boat even more she demonstrates the real Swan DNA by accomplishing both missions in a perfect manner beeing comfortable, sea worthy and very fast. She has proven her outstanding performance in several racing events and in numerous family holidays cruises.

See listing details in Nautors Swan brokerage

Lorenzo Bortolotti
Nautor's Swan Brokerage
T. +377 97 97 95 07


Raceboats Only 2003 Maxi Dolphin MD65. 650,000 EUR. Located in South of France.

Form, function and outright performance from the legendary Maxi Dolphin and Luca Brenta. About as Italian as Ferrari or parmesan, but with a higher carbon content.

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly

Michele Antonini – Grabau International (Italia)
Tel: +39 333 74 89 281


Raceboats Only 1983 12 Metre Victory 83. All Reasonable Offers Considered USD. Located in Portsmouth, Rhode Island

Victory'83 - 2 Time World Champion - completely updated, fully tuned up with an extensive sail inventory. A proven Winner - add crew, water and GO!. Complete program for sale with tender and container.

Victory'83 received a complete refit and update in 2008. The first twelve to be fully outfitted and laid out for the larger crew size permitted in the current 12M Rule. The original hull, keel and tab was retained. We added new cockpits and foredeck, rudder, winches, hardware, spars/rigging, electronics, hydraulics and of course, fairing and paint - in essence a new boat! She set a new standard for the Class and has earned an enviable race record. The Owner is retiring from Twelve Metre Racing and would like to pass her on to a new custodian!

For full details please go to ....

See listing details in Seahorse's RaceboatsOnly


See the collection at

The Last Word
Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups. -- George Carlin

Editorial and letter submissions to

Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see

Search the Archives

Phoca Gallery Search
Search - Categories
Search - Contacts
Search - Content
Search - News Feeds
Search - Web Links

Our Partners

Seahorse Magazine

Wight Vodka


Ocean Safety

Yacht Club Monaco

St Thomas YC

Grenada Sailing Week

Antigua Sailing Week