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The Pacific Highway Takes An Exit Toll
It is hard to judge whether the Pacific is extracting a particular toll from the peloton of the Barcelona World Race fleet, a tax at the gateway to deliverance into Atlantic, whether it is simply the accumulation of hard miles since the start, or recent problems among them are all purely circumstantial.

But with the news Monday night that Kito de Pavant and Seb Audigane's Groupe Bel have a problem with their keel which will need proper assessment, none of the fifth to seventh placed boats will climb the Atlantic for home at truly maximum capacity.

Fifth placed Groupe Bel's De Pavant was remaining resolutely upbeat while he could on today's Visio-Conference, admitting that he and Audigane do not really know exactly what the problem is, but that the head of their keel has been showing some movement.

Their fate contrasts slightly with that of Ryan Breymaier and Boris Herrmann on Neutrogena who were visibly delighted to pass Cape Horn today at 1135hrs UTC, taking 14 days, 16hrs, 50mins since Cook Strait. But they also explained the detail of their own keel ram problem which has compromised them for the last five days and which will handicap them progressively until the finish.

The Cape Horn passage of Renault Z.E Sailing Team on Monday evening proved an almost Mediterranean interlude for Pachi Rivero and Toño Piris, who had sunshine, light winds and were accompanied - as if to order - by a pod of dolphins. Their strategic options may be relatively complex but their Farr design is in good shape for the Atlantic and should, ironically, be able to profit from uncertainty and compromise which affects their rivals behind.

And at the front of the fleet Jean-Pierre Dick and Loick Peyron lead MAPFRE by 170 miles, the Spanish duo having regained 100 miles since their halyards halt after Cape Horn.

Rankings At 1400hrs Tuesday 8th March 2011
1. Virbac-Paprec 3, 5316 nm to finish
2. Mapfre, 170 nm to leader
3. Renault Z.E, 1324
4. Neutrogena, 1548
5. Groupe Bel, 1620
6. Mirabaud, 1718
7. Estrella Damm Sailing Team, 1731
8. Hugo Boss, 2448
9. Gaes Centros Auditivos, 2631
10. Forum Maritim Catala, 4482
11. Central Lechera Asturiana, 6233
12. We Are Water, 6233
RTD Foncia
RTD President

"Cape Horn Is A Gift From Above"
"It's incredible. I'm rounding the Horn with you. I'm with Neutrogena which is just 50 metres from me! It's the first time I've passed so close to the Horn. I'm 200 metres away". It is exactly 1124 GMT, early morning at Cape Horn, as Thomas Coville announces mid audio link-up that he's passing the longitude of Cape Horn live.

Just a few hours ago, the solo sailor was tackling a storm; a real squall with 6 to 8 metre waves and wind gusting to 50 knots: "At times like that," admitted Tom, "You feel very small I can tell you." It was night and using his instinct alone, he put a third reef in the mainsail. "Nothing was forcing me to do it" he explains. Doubtless this is the survival instinct and experience that is kicking in above all else.

Concentrated for the past 38 days, or over 5 weeks, on the exceptional reference time achieved by Francis Joyon in 2008, the skipper of Sodebo is racking up the miles with consistency. Setting out from Brest on Saturday 29 January, Thomas Coville has already clocked up 19,186 miles, which he's covered at an average speed of 21.03 knots. The solo sailor aboard Sodebo is rocketing across the oceans with a target average speed of 20 knots. He has 7,000 miles to go as the crow flies between the Horn and Brest. Working furiously to stay in the present, forcing himself to focus on his speed and "avoid getting annoyed by going over the same scenario over and over again", he tries to stand up to the pressure of the clock which keeps on ticking. However, being a competitor at heart, he surely knows that he has 19 days, 13 hours, 16 minutes and 34 seconds ahead of him to beat the solo round the world record which stands at 57 days, 13 hours, 34 minutes and 06 seconds.

When heading into battle with the Pacific, Tom set himself the objective of having a deficit of less than 1,000 miles at Cape Horn before taking on the climb up the Atlantic in psychologically more comfortable conditions than he had four years ago, where he had a deficit of 4 days. On crossing the longitude of Cape Horn today, Tuesday 8 March, he had a deficit of 687 miles in relation to IDEC. As such he still has everything to play for. Francis Joyon had to slow down the other side of Cape Horn to repair his boat. Thomas' boat is apparently in perfect condition with the exception of two mainsail battens which were snapped in a broach a few days ago. As regards the physical challenge represented by the 7,000 miles left to go, this doesn't seen to be a concern for the skipper of Sodebo. -- Translated by Kate Jennings

Wiley Nautical Sailing Books Need You

Wiley Nautical Sailing Books Need You
Can you read? Do you sail? If the answer to both is 'yes' then take the Wiley Nautical survey and win £100 of sailing books. This is your chance to tell one the UK's leading sailing publishers what you want to read - and how you want to read it. The survey is mercifully short, it'll only take a minute or so but Wiley Nautical's gratitude will be everlasting.

Squally Skies, Fitful Breeze and Skillful Sailing
Simpson Bay, St. Maarten: On a strange, squally day where it rained early and often - and in many divisions, both skill and luck, sometimes in heavy doses, played a major role in the final results - the 31st running of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta came to a close this afternoon following a single, extremely taxing point-to-point race from Marigot to Simpson Bay.

Every edition of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta takes on its own personality, and Number 31 in the annual series will be remembered as a largely light-air affair. Ironically, it's been a very windy winter on the idyllic Caribbean isle, but for the most part this weekend, the usually reliable trade winds were fitful and elusive, and racing was conducted in breeze of ten knots or less.

Once the results were finalized, a full slate of worthy victors were revealed. In CSA 1R, though both boats finished with identical scores (two firsts and two seconds, for six points apiece), by virtue of her win in the fourth and final race, Peter Peake's well-sailed Peake Yacht Services Storm nipped the impressive Australian Cookson 50, Jazz, to win the division by the narrowest of margins. But in CSA 1C, Wendy Schmidt's Swan 80, Team Selene, easily took top honors in the 8-boat class.

With a perfect score of four consecutive bullets, the Melges 32, Team INTAC, dominated the competition to win CSA 2. Despite almost clipping the wings off the arriving jet, La Forzo Del Destino won today's race in CSA 3 as well as the overall title in the division. Philippe Falle's Beneteau 501, Hydrocarbon Logic, won three of four contests - including today's race - to top the CSA 4 class. And despite a ninth today, William Coates's J/122, Otra Vez, had enough in the bank (two firsts and a second) to triumph in CSA 5.

Another Beneteau, Philippe Herve's First 300 Spirit, Vanille, edged out Ian Hope-Ross's Beneteau 36.5, Kick 'em Jenny, in surprising and dramatic fashion to win CSA 6.

St. Maarten's own Bobby Velasquez and his crew aboard L'Esperance were the winners of CSA 7. In CSA 8, Antiguan Tanner Jones's Blue Peter, a J/30, was the winner in the 11-boat fleet.

With three wins in a row, Patrick Turner's Dick Newick-designed vintage plywood trimaran, Team Kahunas, proved you don't need to go high-tech to still compete - and triumph - in the Multihull 1R class. And Lloyd Thornburg's brand-new Gunboat 66, Phaedo, making her racing debut, also captured all three races in the Multihull 1C division to top the division. In Multihull 2, the top boat was the Lagoon 500, Nikiforov.

Gitana Team Welcomes Sebastien Josse
In May 2010, Baron Benjamin de Rothschild announced his commitment to the new MOD 70 class (Multi One Design) by placing an order for the fourth one design of the series. Today, the Gitana Team unveils the name of the sailor who will be entrusted with the helm of this new craft: Sebastien Josse, a talented sailor, soon to be 36, has been selected to take up the gauntlet.

As he awaits delivery of the Gitana one design, scheduled for the end of October 2011, Sebastien will be able to benefit from sailing the maxi-trimaran Gitana 11, whose platform is very similar to the future MOD 70. This will enable him to find his feet aboard a multihull and start recruiting the men who will accompany him on this new adventure.

An eclectic sailor, Sebastien Josse began his professional sailing career in 1997 by winning the Challenge Espoir Credit Agricole. A native of Nice, Sebastien then left the shores which he'd grown up with, those of the Mediterranean, and exchanged them for the Atlantic coast in order to make progress and really learn his trade with the specialists of the Figaro class, whose stronghold is located in Port-la-Foret, Finistere. Soon the Breton by adoption was emulating the performances of some of the best and ranked 2nd in the prestigious Solitaire du Figaro in 2001. From then on, one thing very quickly led to another. The following year, his talent earned him a ride in the Jules Verne Trophy. A few months later, back in Brest, the record attempt proved conclusive and Sebastien became one of the holders of this famous Trophy. Back on shore just a matter of weeks, the helm of a 60 foot monohull was offered to him, with the grand finale of the programme being a participation in the Vendee Globe 2004-2005. He ended up with a 5th place in this edition

In 2008, the sailor returned to the Vendee Globe with the English racing stable, Offshore Challenges. However the second "Vendee" of his career didn't result in the same success and, whilst at the front of the fleet, Sebastien was forced to retire after 48 days of racing. In 2011, considered as one of the top French monohull specialists, Sebastien didn't have to think twice about upsetting his routine to become the skipper of the future 70 foot trimaran Gitana. -- Translated by Kate Jennings

Yacht Salesperson
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Though a proven track record in the marine sales sector is a plus, an applicant with extensive, but non-marine, experience of selling to HNWIs will also be considered.

A strong sailing background and knowledge of yachts is essential, as, naturally, are fluent language skills in European languages. The position will likely be based at Oyster's HQ in Ipswich, though a European base is a future possibility.

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New Zealand's Tiller Wins a Wild Finish to Butler Cup
For Chris Nesbitt, the Butler Cup stop in the California Dreamin' Series turned into a nightmare Sunday when he lost the championship final to New Zealand's Will Tillman in two straight races that weren't ... races, that is.

The first race of their best-of-three sailoff literally was over before it started. The pair never got to the line after some aggressive jousting when, in a space of about 30 seconds off the port side of the race committee boat, the on-water umpires hoisted two yellow flags (Nesbitt's color for that race) against the 21-year-old racer from nearby Balboa Yacht Club and then a black flag signaling instant disqualification.

A few minutes later, with Nesbitt one down, they tried again, and this time the pair tangled near the Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier where Nesbitt---then the blue boat---drew two flags. He made it to the starting line ... but a second or two early and had to circle back to re-start. By then Tiller was well out of reach, even if Nesbitt hadn't owed two penalty turns.

Only one of the fouls involved contact---"His bow hit our stern," Tiller said---but whenever Tiller waved his protest flag the umpires seemed to agree, according to chief umpire Kirk Brown, that in most instances Nesbitt was penalized "for not keeping clear" when Tiller owned the right of way.

Nesbitt declined to comment. Up to that critical point in the event he had swept his seven rivals, including Tiller, in the round robin portion and beaten Italy's winless Saverio Ramirez and Long Beach's Dustin Durant, 2-0, in the early sailoff rounds.

The Grade 3 California Dreamin' Series for match racing prospects winds up at San Diego next weekend. Tiller and Nesbitt aren't entered there but will meet again in the Grade 2 Ficker Cup back at Long Beach March 17-19. That winner earns a slot in the Congressional Cup March 22-26.

Final standings
1. Will Tiller, New Zealand, 6-1 round robin; 6-1 sailoffs.
2. Chris Nesbitt, Balboa YC, 7-0, 4-2
3. Russ Silvestri, St. Francis YC, 4-3, 5-2
4. Dustin Durant, Long Beach, 3-4, 2-5
5. Bruce Stone, St. Francis YC, 4-3, 1-2
6. John Horsch, Treasure Island Sailing Club, 3-4, 0-2
7. David Storrs, Long Beach YC, 1-6, 0-2
8. Saverio Ramirez, Italy, 0-7, 0-2

Solo Racing Festival
For those in the UK who have not picked up on this the annual Solo Racing Festival will be going ahead at the Royal Southern Yacht Club, Hamble on Saturday 12th March. Owen Clarke's designer Merfyn Owen, who lives in Hamble will be attending as well as colleagues from their brokerage partners Boatshed Performance. So whether your interest be solo sailing or short-handed sailing in general they will be there to answer questions on design, construction, as well as sale/purchase and charter of offshore performance yachts.

Mike Golding is opening the talks at 11:00

Followed by:
Winning Mind Set with Ian Brown, sports psychologist
Global Ocean race with Oliver Dewar
Two Star/ Ostar with John Lewis, RWYC
30m trimaran design with Nigel Irens( Idec ,Sodebo)
Artemis Academy first term report with John Thorn( Figaro 2)
Route du Rhum with Marco Nannini, (class 40)

All in the spendid riverside setting of the Royal Southern Yacht Club, Hamble.

Details and tickets on the SORC website

California 32 Altamar
Click on image for photo gallery.

California 32 Altamar Seeking syndicate members and/or investor to secure future of ALTAMAR, hull # 2 in the series by Nicholas Potter (his favorite design) described as "formidable racers, comfortable cruisers." Launched 1937 by Fellows and Stewart she is currently awaiting restoration at Traditional Boat Works in San Diego, California. We will be relocating and encourage anyone interested in this project to contact Doug Jones for further details and photos. Although the scope of the project to rebuild and re-rig her is substantial, we have the resources to undertake such a project once the funds are available. ALTAMAR's sea worthiness, sea keeping abilities and speed as well as that of her sisters is well known, and her accommodation plan could be modified to include amenities unavailable in 1937.

We also have a 33' Luders designed and built motor vessel launched in 1949 as a sports fisherman, subsequently used by Robert Gardiner to carry family and guests commuting between Gardiner's Island and Long Island, New York and to the mainland. A small investment would finish up the repowering, cosmetics and refitting of this classic; her accommodation plan makes her perfect for weekend cruising or she could act as a tender to a large sail boat. Call or e-mail Doug for further details and photos.

Please call us for details of these projects, to discuss other projects and to have spars built. We have recently built a mast for a Rhodes sloop, and spars for several Kettenburg designed and built boats.

Douglas Jones, Traditional Boat Works, 001-619-542-1229 or

ISA 5th Annual Awards Ball
The ISA (Irish Sailing Association) 5th Annual Awards Ball was held on Saturday the 5th of March in the Royal Marine Hotel, Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin where 6 nominees became winners of the 6 prestigious ISA Awards. Minister for Sport, Mary Hanafin was there to present the awards at the biggest social event of the year for the sailing, motorboating and windsurfing community.

Among the winners was Nicholas 'Nin' O'Leary of Royal Cork Yacht Club who beat both his father, Anthony O'Leary, and his brother, Peter O'Leary, who were also nominees, to win the ISA Sailing Achievement of the Year. Nicholas' achievements included narrowly beating his father Anthony at the ISA All Ireland Championships in 2010 by just a single point after a nail-biting finale in difficult conditions off Kinsale in November. The win made it three-in-a-row for this remarkable young 24 year old sailor, the only person to achieve this in the 64 years of the event's history. On receiving the award Nicholas remarked "I was not expecting to win the award. Being nominated in the same category as Mick Liddy and Mark Pollock and their amazing achievement was prestigious enough and also having competition like Oisin Van Gelderen and his speed sailing title so it really was great to have my accomplishments recognised."

The Awards Ball was also the first event for the ISA's new President Niamh McCutcheon who was elected earlier that day at the ISA AGM. Niamh has now made history becoming the first female ISA President since the organisation was founded in 1945.

As watersports enthusiasts, ISA members are aware of the tremendous work the RNLI do each and every day. In order to support their tireless work the event also held a collection in aid of the RNLI which raised over €2,250.

Full list of awards winners at

Short Tacks
New this year in the Delta Lloyd Regatta will be the participation of the paralympic Sonar class. The Organising Committee of the Delta Lloyd Regatta has decided to let the Sonar class participate in this year's Regatta. One of the main reasons is that it wants to standardize the ISAF World Cup events.

After announcing that the event will be open for the 2.4 mR classes, this is the second major announcement of the Organising Committee, concerning the Paralympic classes, in a short period of time.

The Dutch Udo Hessels, Marcel van der Veen and Mischa Rossen are the current World Champions for the IFDS (International Federation for Disabled Sailing) in the Paralympic Sonar-class. They are strongly focussed and have to ambition to win a medal on the Paralympics in London 2012 and are part of the Dutch Delta Lloyd squat. In 2004 they already won the silver medal in Athens.


Day 5 Oracle RC44 San Diego Cup

Ten minutes on board Rambler 100 in the 2011 RORC Caribbean 600 from crew member Juggy Clougher.

Sodebo/Coville videos courtesy Helly Hansen:


La Charente-Maritime Bahia Transat 6,50 2011

The entries list fills. 20 prototypes and 39 series are qualified.


The RYA's investment into coaching expertise has received a boost this month with the appointment of a new Coaching Development Manager, and the launch of an exciting new initiative aimed at developing elite level coaches.

David Mellor came on board as the RYA Coaching Development Manager on 28 February, bringing with him a wealth of experience of the RYA Racing programmes as both a sailor and a coach, spanning all levels of performance.

A key focus of Mellor's new role is the development and launch of the RYA Podium Coach Programme - a brand new scheme focussed on optimising athletic success by raising the standard of World Class Coaching.

The Podium Coach Programme, supported by UK Sport, is billed as a cutting edge, two-year journey to developing personal coaching expertise at the highest level, and will see investment of approximately £15,000 worth of personal development opportunities per participant.

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The Last Word
What can be greater blasphemy than to ascribe the wickedness of man to the orders of the Almighty? -- Thomas Paine

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