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Solitaire Du Figaro: Second One To Le Cleac'h?
Francisco Lobato, fourth at the latest ranking and first newcomer. Photo by Courcoux-Marmara/Le Figaro. Click on image to enlarge.

Figaro After more hours of exhausting sailing, in choppy seas and strong breeze with gusts at 30 plus knots, Armel le Cleac'h has imposed his supremacy once again at Saint Nazaire. Jeremie Beyou and Francois Gabart keep alternating in second position, ready to lauch the final attack. The latest ETA for leaders is around midnight. Brilliant performances by the newcomers to the race Francisco Lobato and Anthony Marchand.

At 21h57 last night, Armel le Cleac'h Brit Air's skipper and winner of the first leg, rounded SN1 mark getting Grand Prix GMF Assistance, young Francois Gabart (Skipper Macif 2010) and Jeremie Beyou (BPI) followed him shortly. The fleet then attacked the long stretch along the Brittany coast. Tacking upwind towards Brest in a northerly/north westerly breeze the 45 sailors had to put their best helming, manoeuvring and strategic abilities to the test on the last 115 miles in tricky.

He was last in Gijon at the end of a catastrophic leg for him, but on this second stage Francisco Lobato, the naval engineering student from Lisbon racing on ROFF/TEMPO-TEAM, seems to have quickly recovered from the setback and has conducted a magnificent second stage. His sixth position overall and second among the newcomers say it all. He is being duelling with "colleague" Anthony Marchand on Espoir Region Bretagne to be first rookie in Brest and at the latest position reports they were less than one mile apart They not only fight for the honour of being the best young skipper but also for the Beneteau special ranking that awards each winner's leg with a cheque worth 800 Euros.

Jonny Malbon has informed the race management team of the Solitaire du Figaro that he has an auto pilot problem, which explains his last place and difficult sailing. Jonny's team are unable to clarify whether the pilot is working at all or not but Jonny is in for some extended helming periods, and will clearly be off the pace.

A major setback for Frederic Duthil (BBox Bouygues Telecom). Strong French skipper at 8h03 a.m. today called Race Direction to announce that he was abandoning and was heading to Lorient. Frederic decided to take part to this years' La Solitaire du Figaro despite having broken his right elbow some weeks previous to the start. He made every possible effort to be on the line in Le Havre and to race. But last night his condition worsened and the pain being nearly unbearable, he decided to abandon La Solitaire.

Top ten at press time:
1. Armel Le Cleac'h, Brit Air, 57.70 nm to leg finish
2. Jeremie Beyou, BPI, .90 nm to leader
3. Francois Gabart, Skipper Macif 2010, 1.20
4. Anthony Marchand, Espoir Region Bretagne, 2.00
5. Fabien Delahaye, Port De Caen Ouistreham, 2.60
6. Francisco Lobato, Roff/Temp-Team, 2.70
7. Kito de Pavant, Groupe Bel, 3.20
8. Jeanne Gregoire, Banque Populaire, 3.80
9. Gildas Morvan, Cercle Vert, 4.2
10. Erwan Tabarly, Nacarat, 4.4

First Ever Event Win for Paul Cambell-James at the UK Round
Photo by Mark Lloyd, Click on image to enlarge.

Extreme Sailing Series UK Round Paul Campbell-James on The Wave, Muscat has won the UK Round of the Extreme Sailing Series at Cowes Week - the first ever regatta win for the youngest skipper on the circuit - claiming an OMEGA Seamaster Planet Ocean watch as part of the prize as top Skipper for the UK round.

The conditions throughout the event have demanded the utmost focus and physical effort from the nine competing teams and today was no exception with 20-25 knots of south-westerly breeze across the short race course and a choppy sea state. Classic conditions for a potential pitch-pole or capsize and the crews knew it, racing with one reef in the mainsail and an extra fifth pro crew to add a bit of extra weight. The top mark proved a dangerous turning mark as they hoisted their giant gennakers to head downwind at full pelt - the crews ready in a second to ease the sails if the bows dug into the waves too deep.

Going into the fifth and final double points race of the day, Paul Campbell-James and his crew had almost done enough to keep the lead from Britain's Mike Golding, but they had to finish the race - zero points and Ecover would claim the top spot. As it was the team did enough, scoring a 4th in the final race, to win the UK round of the Extreme Sailing Series on 249 points: "We knew if we capsized it would be the end of the regatta so pretty pleased to get through it," said a relieved Campbell-James on the podium.

A real battle developed mid-leaderboard between Loick Peyron on Oman Sail Masirah, Red Bull Extreme Sailing and Groupama 40. Only a handful of points separated these three going into the final race. Peyron secured fourth overall, although he never really got into his stride here, and Roman Hagara on Red Bull Extreme Sailing claimed 5th and although lacked consistency they, nonetheless, scored six bullets, ahead of the fastest man round the planet Franck Cammas on Groupama 40.

The Wave, Muscat's victory here means they now share the top spot on the overall Series leaderboard with 14 points apiece. Two points behind are Ecover and Oman Sail Masirah both on 12 points.

Next stop for the Extreme Sailing Series is Kiel in Germany between 26-29 August.

A Perfect Cocktail For August
Wight Vodka The mixologists at 50 North have come up with a new cocktail to help us celebrate the summer's regatta season. Aptly named the August Wight martini, Ritu Manocha, owner of the Wight Vodka brand, shares the recipe: "This is a perfect cocktail to mix when entertaining dockside after a day on the water. It calls for three simple, preferably local ingredients including fresh blackberries, Isle of Wight honey and Wight Vodka (of course!).

Per martini, strain the juice of a small handful of blackberries through a sieve into a shaker with ice. Add a half teaspoon of clear honey and two shots of Wight Vodka. Shake for about a minute to really chill the cocktail, then pour into a martini glass and serve. Enjoy while discussing the day's events with friends and competitors alike!
Tack & Gybe Responsibly

Two British Skippers for Velux 5 Oceans
Photo by Will Carson/VELUX5OCEANS. Click on image to enlarge.

New Velux 5 Oceans Skippers Not since Sir Robin-Knox Johnston sailed into the record books as the victor of the Golden Globe back in 1969 has a British skipper won a singlehanded round the world race. But that could all be about to change as Sir Robin himself today announced not one but two British sailors who will compete in The Ultimate Solo Challenge: the VELUX 5 OCEANS.

Chris Stanmore-Major, 32, and Simon Chalk, 37, will both go head to head with an international fleet of skippers in the gruelling 30,000-mile solo yacht race, which starts from La Rochelle in France on October 17. Stanmore-Major - known as CSM - and Chalk are experienced and talented yachtsmen and are each capable of becoming the first British skipper to win a solo round the world yacht race in 41 years.

CSM, from Cowes on the Isle of Wight, has only just got back from ten months at sea skippering the Qingdao entry in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race but already has his sights firmly set on his next adventure. The VELUX 5 OCEANS will be CSM's first major singlehanded race and he is keenly aware of the challenge ahead.

Chalk, from Leicester, got his first taste of sailing in 1996, when, aged 24, he took part in the BT Global Challenge. His first ever trip on a yacht saw him sail from Brazil to New Zealand via the Southern Ocean, rounding the infamous Cape Horn in the process. A keen adventurer, Chalk hit the headlines in 2003 when he became the first Briton to row solo across the Indian Ocean, and holds nine Guinness World Records in ocean rowing.

Kiteboarding Olympic Campaign for the Rio 2016 Games
Berlin, Germany: The International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) is launching a campaign to gain inclusion of Kiteboard Racing as an event on the Olympic Sailing program for the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games.

The IKA believes that kiteboarding can make a significant contribution to Olympic sailing and help to promote the sport. Kiteboarding can be found on every beach worldwide and is practiced by hundreds of thousands of people globally.

"Kiteboarding is visually exciting to watch and attractive for young people. It can be done all over the world and brings youth, action, color and popularity back to Olympic Sailing." states Markus Schwendtner, Executive Secretary of the class. "Kiteboarding fits the spirit of what the Olympics were created to achieve more than any other sailing class. In my opinion Kiteboarding is the future of Olympic Sailing", he concludes.

The International Olympic Committee stated at the 2009 Olympic Congress in Copenhagen that the Olympic Movement must strive to reach out to youth around the world.

Kiteboarding is universal and has a strong following among women and youth on the highest levels. It is inexpensive to practice and enjoys a strong following as a recreational water sport.

Already the campaign is carrying a lot of momentum. Personalities such as Virgin Group Chairman Sir Richard Branson (GBR), double Olympic Medalist Michael Gebhardt (USA), 9x Kiteboarding World Champion Kristin Boese (GER), Neil Pryde (NZL) and many more are supporting the effort with full force.

According to the IKA, kiteboarding's media figures are strong with a media report taken in 2008 showing an average of 350 hours of TV coverage, 30 million readers of newspapers and magazines and over 35 million viewers of online media per major event.

For more information about the Olympic campaign please see the IKA Olympic micro site:

Hotel and Development Land For Sale in Bequia
Hotel And Development Land Forsale In Bequia The Receiver of Friendship Bay Hotel Limited (in Receivership) offers for sale the land and property situated at Friendship Bay Hotel in Bequia, St Vincent and the Grenadines.

- Located on c 435,600 sq ft land;
- c.20% beachfront;
- Development potential;
- Rear undeveloped land is sloping with ocean views;
- Hotel consists of 19 rooms and 5 suites (2 with individual plunge pools);
- Beachfront restaurant/bar;
- Breakfast room; and
- Private jetty.

About Bequia
Bequia has its own airport with daily scheduled flights to and from Barbados and several other of the Grenadine Islands. Bequia is the second largest of the Islands after the capital island of St. Vincent. It measures approximately 7 square miles and has a population of approximately 5,000 people. It has a strong maritime heritage and is a favourite destination for yachts from all over the world. Friendship Bay is a sheltered south facing bay on Bequia's windward side with a broad sandy beach.

Further details available on request.
Indicative offers by 5pm EST Monday 16 August 2010.

Contact for enquiries
Claire Loebell
Phone: +1 345 814 8922
Ernst & Young Ltd
62 Forum Lane, Camana Bay
PO Box 510, Grand Cayman KY1-1006
Cayman Islands

Copa Del Rey Audi MAPFRE
Photo by Nico Martinez, Click on image for photo gallery.

Copa Del Rey Palma de Mallorca, Spain: Just two days to go for the 29 edition of the Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre, and nothing has been decided yet. One more day the wind caused the delay in the start of the races, but once settled it allowed to run two legs which brought the excitement back to the Bay of Palma. Nothing has been decided yet, and the short distances in the top positions leaves the end open. Guillermo Parada's Matador holds to the leadership in IRC B in spite of Bribon's attack, which scratches one point and adds more excitement to the last two days of racing. Alegre was also able to keep the leadership in IRC A in spite of the good day both her contenders Ran and Container had. Among the RI, Rats on fire benefited from Itaca's poor performance today, which places the former in the first place, and Tanit Medilevel clears out from Pedro Campos' Movistar. Discards were applied in the one-design classes, and X on the beach is new leader in X-35, whereas Iberostar keeps a confortable lead in X-41.

In spite of today's poor performance, Alegre of Andy Soriano remains first in IRC B, with a lead of four points over RAN and Container, tied on 17 points, which get dangerously close. Zennstrom's 72 footer managed a third and a fourth place, whereas Mini Maxi Container steered by Markus Wieser was the best scoring boat in the first one, and the second in the last race, cutting the distance to Soriano by six points. Tactics played an important role today as the wind remained puffy and shifty all day in the Alpha race course, and Alegre didn't call the best tactics among the biggest boats of the fleet.

Matador is still leader in IRC B, but she no longer enjoys the advantage of the previous days, for Bribon cut distances by one point.

The committee hopes to run two more races tomorrow, which would allow the application of a discard in the compensated time divisions, which could lead to an unexpected swing in positions.

Full rankings on

Discussion & Dialogue
Cowes, England: Russell Coutts, CEO of BMW ORACLE Racing, came to Cowes, birthplace of the America's Cup, to update potential teams about plans for the 34th America's Cup, scheduled for 2013 or 2014.

He met skippers, sponsors and team owners competing in the Extreme Sailing Series for 40-foot catamarans.

"Since winning the 33rd America's Cup in February we have had ongoing dialogue with interested parties," commented Coutts.

Independent rule writers are currently simultaneously creating a new class of monohull and multihull boats. Though different in type, the two concepts share common characteristics: high speed and capability across the wind range; 22 meters overall length; logistical simplicity; and designed from the outset to incorporate innovative camera, audio and data systems to generate the best-ever television of America's Cup racing.

Coutts' briefing to the multihull meeting was warmly welcomed. "The multihull sailors, designers and team owners have a voice in this debate. So do the commercial partners and the venue candidates. And so does television. That's why we are talking and listening," he added. Asked if the monohull or multihull choice would affect the number of teams in the next Cup, Coutts said, "I think there are solid potential teams who are intent on excelling no matter what type of boat is raced. The question is which choice will result in the best America's Cup? That is why we are holding these workshops with both monohull and multihull stakeholders."

Key dates:
Protocol rule: published by August 31
Design rules: published by September 30
Venue & Year: confirmed by December 31
Challenges accepted: October 1 - January 31, 2011

Wright Seizes Win at Farr 30 Great Lakes Champs
Ullman Sails At last weekend's Farr 30 Great Lakes Championships in Buffalo, NY, Ullman Sails customer Chuck Wright pulled off an outstanding final leg in the last race of the event to win first place overall! The two-day regatta hosted extremely close racing as five boats had a chance to win going into the last race. Canadian Geoff Brown finished 3rd overall after some bad luck at the finish line allowed Wright and his team to slide ahead. And Bill Markel of Buffalo claimed 4th in the final results. All three boats were powered by Ullman Sails.

Invest in your performance.

BMW Oracle Racing Defends America's Honour
Photo by Gilles Martin-Raget/ BMW ORACLE Racing. Click on image for photo gallery.

1851 Cup The re-enactment of the 1851 race around the Isle of Wight that spawned sailing's greatest competition, the America's Cup, got off to a phenomenal start today between BMW ORACLE Racing, the present America's Cup champions and Sir Keith Mills' TEAMORIGIN as their two yachts blasted east down the Solent.

Sadly for the British team moments before the start they picked up a penalty for gybing too close. 1-0 to the US team's skipper James Spithill.

With a downwind start the powerful, heavy ACC boats, under their giant spinnakers, sailing so close they appeared to be somehow attached, carved their way down the eastern Solent, creating a magnificent spectacle for those out on the water as well as the thousands following the racing over the internet.

The racing remained tight down the Solent as the boats headed towards Portsmouth and after the first gybe round the eastern side of the island there were two major luffs. In the second TEAMORIGIN came out ahead but picked up a second penalty and match racing rules obliged them to carry out their 360deg penalty turn immediately.

Meanwhile the Americans were nursing a damaged spinnaker and had to drop it losing precious ground. This kept TEAMORIGIN ahead of BMW ORACLE Racing as they rounded the No Man's Land Fort but during the subsequent spinnaker drop as they hardened up, most of the spinnaker was down when the foot fell overboard, dragging the whole sail into the water and it promptly wrapped itself around the keel. Rapidly Anthony Nossiter dived over the side to clear the kite but by the time it was cleared and the British crew was underway again, BMW ORACLE Racing had overtaken and pulled out an 800m lead.

It was far from without incident on board BMW ORACLE Racing. In addition to their spinnaker issues they also managed to destroy their jockey poles through trying to sail high angles under spinnaker as they reached down the eastern end of the Solent.

Impressively Ben Ainslie and the TEAMORIGIN crew were able to halve their deficit as they short tacked along the south side of the Isle of Wight towards St Catherine's Point, however BMW ORACLE Racing was first to crack off towards the Needles and re-extended. En route to the Needles TEAMORIGIN's yacht developed a technical problem when the metal fitting holding the jib to the halyard parted company.

This being an exhibition race, the organisers were keen to lay on a show coming back down the Solent so once round the Needles and into Hurst Narrows, BMW ORACLE Racing stopped and the race was restarted, the American team given a one minute head start with the hope that the two boats would match race their way back to Cowes in the same spectacular style as they had left in the morning.

Sadly this wasn't to be when on their first gybe following the restart TEAMORIGIN blew up their second spinnaker. By this time the wind had piped up to 24 knots and the British team did a safe outside gybe and centred the main but as the spinnaker refilled it exploded.

Tomorrow for the final day of the 1851 Cup there is a return to windward-leewards with four races scheduled. Racing is set to start earlier than normal, at 10:00. The score is currently four wins and one loss to TEAMORIGIN with wins for the first three races tomorrow worth three points each. TEAMORIGIN must win the first race tomorrow if they are not to go level on points with their American adversary.

SAP 505 World Championships
Photo by Christophe Favreau, Click on image for photo gallery.

International 505 Worlds Aarhus, Denmark: If you can't win the regatta then perhaps winning the final race is the next best thing. That's what Jan Saugmann and Morten Ramsbaek did today in the final heat of the SAP 505 World Championships in Aarhus, Denmark.

While new World Champions Wolfgang Hunger and Julien Kleiner had the luxury of packing up their boat a day early, the rest of the 126 competitors ventured out into a light-airs Bay of Aarhus for one last gate start, one final opportunity to move themselves up the rankings.

Early leaders of today's race were the Americans who had led the regatta after day one, 1999 World Champion Howie Hamlin and Andy Zinn. Defending in such tricky conditions was tough, however, as Jorgen and Jacob Bojsen-Moller took over the lead for a while. But it was the 'Fast Danes', so called because they're fast, but also because it's easier for foreigners to say rather than pronounce their names - Saugmann and Ramsbaek - who took the lead when it mattered, beating the Bojsen-Moller brothers by a few metres.

Saugmann and Ramsbaek, the 2007 World Champions, had high hopes of winning on home waters and had trained extensively in Aarhus leading up to the Worlds. They were leading race one almost a week ago when gear failure put them out of action for heats one and two. It wasn't until today when the two discards in the nine-race series kicked in, and their final heat victory shot them back up the rankings to 6th overall.

Hunger and Kleiner sailed at a level beyond any other competitor. Even Hunger himself couldn't quite explain how he had made sense of such tricky conditions in the latter stages of the regatta. "It was from watching things, the clouds, the other boats, but also from a feeling that I had, maybe an intuition," he said. It seems the three-time 470 Olympian hasn't lost any of the sharpness that brought him two 470 world titles, not to mention his three previous 505 world titles won with Jess in the front of the boat.

What pleased Hunger particularly about victory in Denmark was that the wide variety of wind conditions made this the most all-round test of any 505 World Championship in which he has competed. It has also been the most widely followed 505 championship ever, thanks to the live coverage delivered by a team in Aarhus, consisting primarily of volunteers and sailing enthusiasts.

Final top ten:
1. Dr. Wolfgang Hunger / Julien Kleiner, GER, 14 points
2. Jorgen Bojsen-Moller / Jacob Bojsen-Moller, DEN, 16
3. Ian Pinnell / Ian Mitchell, GBR, 31
4. Howard Hamlin / Andy Zinn, USA, 43
5. Meike Schomaeker / Holger Jess, GER, 51
6. Jan Saugmann / Morten Ramsbaek, DEN, 61
7. Stefan Bohm / Gerald Roos, GER, 75
8. Ebbe Rosen / Olle Wenrup, SWE, 84
9. Claas Lehmann / Leon Oehme, GER, 92
10. Martin Goerge / Rainer Goerge, GER, 93

Featured Brokerage
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The Last Word
We don't have to save the world. The world is big enough to look after itself. What we have to be concerned about is whether or not the world we live in will be capable of sustaining us in it. -- Douglas Adams

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