In This Issue
At the Sharp End: J-Class
Vendee-Arctique-Les Sables d'Olonne Race
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine
Hong Kong to Vietnam Race 2021: Notice of Race Released and Entry Open
Team New Zealand named in NZ$1.5m government wage subsidy probe
Government freezes America's Cup organisers payments
America's Cup Event organisation obtains Court injunction on confidential report publication
Eric Twiname Team Racing Championships cancelled
Len Heffernan Changed The Style Of Sydney 18 Footers In The 1960s
Jeanneau America Becomes Presenting Partner of Ida Lewis Distance Race
Letters to the Editor
Featured Brokerage:
• • Swan 77-006 Callisto
• • Racing sailboat TP52
• • Maxi Dolphin MD62AB - 62FT Cruising Sloop
The Last Word: Galileo Galilei

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: J-Class
Seeking out an awesome sailing angle, location, position is like finding a great piece of wood for a sculptor - finding that potential to carve an image from the scene unfolding in front of you. A camera body and lens are the tools of the trade in place of a lignum vitae mallet and chisel. I strive to capture the dynamism and symmetry with eyes and heart of a photographer who loves this sport.

The elegant thoroughbreds that are the J-Class sit atop the rankings for sailing eye candy in my humble opinion. In the '90s Shamrock and Endeavour featured on the yachting scene. Velsheda then joined them after a refit at SYS. Racing showcased three Js at the RYS 150th Anniversary regatta in Cowes, 2001. The event witnessed la crème de la crème of classic yachts and sailing royalty. Ranger followed suit two years on. In more recent years five additional J-Class yachts have swelled the fleet with each subsequent season witnessing a different configuration cross the start line.

With the announcement that the J-Class fleet will not now compete at the America's Cup in Auckland fans will have to wait on for more race action. This presents an opportunity to look back at some of the many entertaining J-Class regattas that we have had the privilege to enjoy over the last twenty years. From Falmouth, a return to the Solent, the first meeting of five Js in Palma, their rematch at the Bucket in St Barths, numerous rounds at the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup in Porto Cervo and Les Voiles de St Tropez, the RYS Bicentennial regatta, the 2017 World Championship in Newport, RI and the visual feast that was the largest J-Class fleet ever to assemble showcasing at the America's Cup in Bermuda.

I hold a comprehensive library of J-Class images spanning the last two decades. A selection of these have been hand-picked for a Virtual 3D Exhibition to be immersed in. Limited Edition hand prints adorn the 'gallery' walls capturing the passion and potency carved from of the action.

The following link will take you through to the gallery. Enjoy:

Vendee-Arctique-Les Sables d'Olonne Race
RACE PREVIEW - After the unprecedented interruption of the IMOCA racing season because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the action on the water is finally about to start with the innovative new 'Arctique' race. (Start 4th of July, 3.30pm CET)

The Vendee-Arctique-Les Sables d'Olonne race, with a unique course, a modified race organisation to meet the requirements of public safety and a new bespoke communications plan, has been devised to make up for the loss of The Transat CIC Race and the New York-Vendee-Les Sables d'Olonne race.

The 3,566-mile "warm-up" for this year's Vendee Globe solo round-the-world race, starts on Saturday afternoon from outside Les Sables and will feature 20 skippers from five nations, among them four female skippers.

The race features almost all the Vendee Globe top guns with the notable exception of Britain's Alex Thomson on board Hugo Boss who has decided not to take part and focus instead on his own build-up strategy to his fifth entry in the world's greatest solo ocean race.

The race will provide the opportunity for five skippers to formally complete their qualification for the Vendee Globe - Clement Giraud (Vers Un Monde Sans Sida), Isabelle Joschke (MACSF), Kojiro Shiraishi (DMG MORI GLOBAL ONE), Sebastien Simon (Arkea Paprec) and Armel Tripon (L'Occitaine En Provence).

Because of the Covid-19 pandemic there will be no race village at Les Sables d'Olonne. Instead skippers - sailing solo - will arrive at the start area outside the town by 13.00 hours local time on Saturday, ready to take the start at 15.30. They will use the same start zone that will be used for the Vendee Globe on November 8th. The race is expected to take 10-12 days, with the first finishers due on July 14th.

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

One Vendee Globe technical team breaks rank, an awful day in Emsworth, skullduggery from the outset, leaky keels are slow… and an unexpected success amid all the frustration of lockdown. Christian Fevrier, Jack Griffin, Patrice Carpentier, Sam Davies, Hans Zuiderbaan, Jon Emmett

World news
The Vendee Globe is a go, after a chilly warm-up, getting that foil balance right, while trying not to break anything, BURLING and TUKE on the back foot (true), experts versus rookies - a tale of two lockdowns, a formidable track record… and lots to teach. Plus making the most of a (US) bargain. Ky Hurst, Ivor Wilkins, Patrice Carpentier, Blue Robinson, Dobbs Davis, Paul Meilhat, Guillermo Parada, Alex Pella

Paul Cayard - Take the good
Ironically for some the world being turned upside down brought unexpected consolations

IRC - Doing good (too)
The curious advantages of reducing stability. And electric power - is it (yet) for real? Tim Powell

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Hong Kong to Vietnam Race 2021: Notice of Race Released and Entry Open
Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club has released the Notice of Race and opened entry for the 10th edition of the biennial Hong Kong to Vietnam Race. The race starts on 19 October 2021 and will take competitors 673nm from Hong Kong to the Asian paradise of Nha Trang, Vietnam.

Predominantly an epic downwind run in 25 to 30kts of breeze, tropical sunshine, 30-degree water temperature - the Hong Kong to Vietnam Race should be on every sailor's bucket list along with the Club's flagship offshore, the Rolex China Sea Race.

The 2019 edition of the Hong Kong to Vietnam Race had a slew of international entries hailing from Great Britain, Italy, Singapore and the United States. The focal point was the battle for Multihull Line Honours between two racing trimarans; Italian Maserati Multi70 and Hong Kong entry SHK Scallywag/Fuku.

Meitatsu Fukumoto and Seng Huang Lee's SHK Scallywag Fuku took the win and set a new Multihull Race Record of 30h 09m 27s, just under 2 hours ahead of Maserati.

The current Monohull Race Record of 41h 30m 20s was also set in 2019 by professionally crewed Lucky, a US based J/V Maxi 72 skippered by Bryon Ehrhart beating the 2015 race record of 42h 17m 24s set by Syd Fischer's Ragamuffin 100.

The Hong Kong to Vietnam Race was first run in 1996 and then regularly since 2004. It is recognised as a qualifying race for the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race and is the longest Category One offshore race in Asia.
Online Entry
Notice of Race

Team New Zealand named in NZ$1.5m government wage subsidy probe
Just days after announcing the dismissal of an undisclosed number of teammates for leaking confidential information, defending America's Cup champions Team New Zealand is now under investigation for financial mismanagement surrounding government Covid-19 wage subsidies.

The wage subsidy plan is the cornerstone of the government's economic response to Covid-19, allowing businesses negatively affected by the pandemic to receive $585.80 per week to continue paying each full-time employee, according to the New Zealand Herald. The Ministry of Social Development is looking into Team New Zealand's application for NZ$1,478,529 to cover 126 employees.

The subsidies came in two rounds; the first, covering 12 weeks from the start of border closures in mid-March, required applicants to attest they were experiencing Covid-related declines in revenue of 30% or more compared with the year prior. The Kiwi government added an additional eight weeks of subsidy requiring required applicants to claim they were experiencing a Covid-related decline in revenue of 40% or more compared with the same period last year.

Today the Herald broke news of a letter written by senior officials from Auckland Council and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment to the team expressing concern over "serious matters" including fraudulent payments to a Hungarian bank account.

Government freezes America's Cup organisers payments
Focus Live: Government freezes further payments to America's Cup organisers as it investigates claims over the spending of public money. Video / Will Trafford

America's Cup Event organisation obtains Court injunction on confidential report publication
America's Cup Event Ltd and Team New Zealand Ltd have obtained an injunction in the High Court in Auckland precluding news organisations from publishing details of a leaked confidential draft report, commissioned by the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment, into the spending of the NZD$40million Event Fee by the team and event company.

On Monday evening, June 29, Team New Zealand Ltd issued a media statement saying they had outed informants within the organisation and their contracts with the organisation have been terminated.

On Wednesday morning the New Zealand Herald published extracts from a draft preliminary and confidential letter dated June 22, said to be jointly written by Auckland Council and MBIE.

Team New Zealand responded with a lengthy statement on Wednesday afternoon, pointing out that the New Zealand Herald appeared to be unaware of a second letter written by the team in response, which answered the claims made.

Under the Hosting Agreement for the 36th America's Cup, Auckland is named as the Host City and New Zealand as Host Country for the 36th Match and Challenger Selection Series (Prada Cup).

Richard Gladwell in

Eric Twiname Team Racing Championships cancelled
The RYA and Eric Twiname Trust have taken the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Eric Twiname Youth & Junior Team Racing Championships.

The regatta was due to take place on 10-11 October at Farmoor Reservoir in Oxfordshire, but it was agreed that the event could not be delivered safely in light of current coronavirus restrictions.

Unlike conventional fleet racing regattas, the Eric Twiname Youth & Junior Team Racing Championships sees groups of young sailors sharing RS Tera and Firefly dinghies, carrying out on-water changeovers using support RIBs and often being in close proximity to one another ashore.

It also requires a high number of support staff and volunteers, as well as attracting a large amount of spectators to the site.

The factors led the RYA and the Eric Twiname Trust to cancel the 2020 event and instead focus on making the 2021 regatta the best in its 20-year history.

However, the RYA has reaffirmed its intention to run the Regional Junior Championships on 26-27 September and the revised Youth National Championships from 24-27 October.

Len Heffernan Changed The Style Of Sydney 18 Footers In The 1960s
Jantzen Girl. Click on image for photo gallery.

Brisbane led the way in the transition from the four-handed 18ft Skiffs to the three-handers in the late 1950s, but it was the late Len Heffernan who took up the challenge to introduce the new style boats to Sydney, when the local clubs initially refused to accept their registration.

Heffernan, who was a designer and builder as well as a champion skipper, saw the potential of the Bob Miller (later known as Ben Lexcen) light three-hander concept and was determined to get the new style boats racing in Sydney.

The 18s of the 1950s were large-hulled, big sail-area carriers manned by crews of five or six. The new, smaller, lighter three-handers with moderate sail areas could plane upwind.

Len Heffernan had won the 1958 Giltinan Championship on Sydney Harbour, with Jantzen Girl III, and the following season won the Australian Championship on the Brisbane River from Bob Miller's radical hard-chined plywood skiff Taipan.

Heffernan later recalled, "that (Miller's) boat was so fast on the wind, that's what sold me on the three-handers, but the spinnakers were too small. In very light conditions, we were too fast downwind for it on the Brisbane River."

Miller took Taipan to Auckland in 1960 for the Giltinan Championship but delegates made him cut big holes in the foredeck and side decks to meet the class definition of an 'open boat.

Heffernan tried to get the Sydney Flying Squadron to allow three-handers to race with the club, but many members wanted to retain the 'open boat' spirit of the older 18s, with their massive sail plans and large crews, and strongly resisted the move.

Heffernan built a compromise four-handed boat for the following season while Miller built Venom.

With the four-handed, Jantzen Girl 6, Heffernan won the first heat of the 1961 JJs on the Brisbane River but Miller, who had 'corrected' the Taipan design when he built Venom, easily won the title.

Back in Sydney, Heffernan finally got the three-handers accepted by the SFS. Unfortunately it was September which was too late for him to build one for the new season. He decided to go to Brisbane and bought Taipan which he re-named Crystal Lad and, with new sails, easily won the 1961-1962 Australian Championship in Cairns, NQ.

Heffernan spent nearly 12 months building six three-handers to the Taipan/Venom style and got the 'new boat' going in Sydney. He won two of his five Australian Championship victories in one of them, Aberdare.

The boats were cold-moulded with two skins of cedar angled at about 45 degrees. They had a plywood floor and, unlike the hard-chined Taipan, were round-bilged, mainly for appearance. -- Frank Quealey, Australian 18 Footers League Ltd.

Jeanneau America Becomes Presenting Partner of Ida Lewis Distance Race
The annual Ida Lewis Distance Race, scheduled for its 16th edition starting Saturday, August 15, has announced that Jeanneau America is the event's new Presenting Partner. The news comes on the heels of the race changing its start date from Friday to Saturday to better accommodate an inclusive weekend schedule and coincides with other exciting changes for the event, including a Mixed (coed) Double-Handed class added to its traditional lineup of IRC, PHRF (Spinnaker and Cruising Spinnaker), One Design, Multihull, and open Double-Handed classes.

A Mixed Double-Handed class is set to debut at the 2024 Olympic Regatta, which has sparked wide interest in the discipline as well as Jeanneau's Sun Fast 3300, which fits the bill for easy performance handling by short-handed crews while also filling a niche for fun sailing with family and friends. Harvey expects three of the 3300s to join the Mixed Double-Handed class and up to six of the boats to be sailing in the local area by next summer.

The Ida Lewis Distance Race, for boats 28 feet or longer, starts and finishes off Newport, R.I. and uses a choice of six courses (two of them newly added this year), ranging from 33 to 169 nautical miles, to send teams on either an overnight coastal race or - new for this year - a day race on Narragansett Bay.

Per the Notice of Race, the IRC and both Double-Handed classes will sail one of the four longer courses, with a start on Saturday and finish on Sunday. The PHRF and Cruising Spinnaker classes will both sail the Narragansett Bay Course, which tracks either clockwise or counter-clockwise (depending on the wind) around Conanicut and Prudence Islands. Those teams will start on Saturday and finish on Saturday afternoon. Joining the PHRF racing will be J/30s, J/88s, J/105s, J/109s, and J/121s competing in the J Fest Regatta, hosted August 15-16 by Sail Newport; they will be scored separately and together with the Ida Lewis Distance Race fleet.

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 Grant Dalton, Emirates Team New Zealand:

This week has seen a highly orchestrated attack on our integrity and credibility by people with questionable motives. We want to reassure all of our supporters, our sponsors, and partners that there has been no misappropriation of public money, and we are working with MBIE to clear all allegations.

Peeling back all of the layers of what is going on here, it is a textbook case of ‘Intentional reputational damage 101’. It is a deliberate, sinister, and highly orchestrated attack which includes anonymous tip-offs, recordings and document leaks. ‘Informants’ orchestrate unfair accusations, bypassing normal processes, and going straight to external authorities. The authorities quite correctly look into the claims. Once that process begins the claims are leaked to media to create a kangaroo court trial, by specific media, before the target has had a chance to clear themselves through proper process. And even when the claims are proven inaccurate or wrong the reputational damage is done.

All this at a time when every hour counts as we try to focus on delivering a great event and Defending the America’s Cup. The timing has been very well considered to take our attention off these vital objectives.

A huge irony is that one of the points we have been criticised in the interim report is that we have not been forthcoming in providing highly confidential and commercial information. The reason we did not want to provide elements of this information was because we held serious concern about the lack of confidentiality in the process. Clearly we were quite right about that.

The reason we have been seriously concerned about the media reporting on the initial, incomplete and now “leaked” report is because it will give competitive advantage to our on-water Challengers during this and subsequent campaigns, we have had to take all actions available to protect that information and our competitive position.

Everyone is asking - what are their motives? We are getting increasingly clear views on this, but we won’t stoop to their level today, our focus needs to be elsewhere right now.

I want to emphasise, as we have all week, that any outcomes from MBIE’s investigation can and will be worked through to ensure we deliver a great event and a successful campaign. We will work with the Government and project partners to ensure this.

As a team, all we want to do is defend this America’s Cup successfully in March 2021, and showcase to the world what an amazing country we have through a successfully run and broadcast event.

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The Last Word
Wine is sunlight, held together by water. -- Galileo Galilei

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