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Transat Benodet - Martinique: Drouglazet Dismasted
At 2:40 p.m. (Paris time) on Monday, Eric Drouglazet contacted Jean Maurel, the director of racing in the Transat Benodet - Martinique, to tell him he had been dismasted. His Figaro Beneteau "Luisina" was sailing in 35 knots of crosswind, under mainsail and solent. He was in his bunk when the mast broke about two meters above the deck. He immediately cut the cables that held the spar so that it dud not damage the hull. Eric is safe and unharmed, but is 460 miles from the Azores and Madeira. He will make a decision which port to head to; he is heading east under engine power. The skipper of Luisina was third, 6.2 miles behind the leader at the time of the incident.

The gale that was on everyone's lips for the past few days has come to fruition. Caught between very strong winds and confused seas (although fortunately not as bad as forecast), the fleet is being hit by a notherly wind generated by a descent of cold air. Those competitors positioned closed to the direct route have been the first to be affected and have had to shorten sails. Spinnakers have to be preserved; they will be valuable allies on the way to Martinique.

Eris Mas from Meteo Consult says the the fleet should be facing north-easterlies of force 6 in the next day, not an easy passage but not as severe as the winds on Monday.

Top ten on 18/04/2011 at 19:00

1. Thomas Rouxel, BRETAGNE - CREDIT MUTUEL PERFORMANCE, 1863.7 nm to finish
2. Fabien Delahaye, PORT DE CAEN OUISTREHAM, 1.2 nm to leader
3. Erwan Tabarly, NACARAT, 5.1
4. Nicolas Lunven, GENERALI, 11.8
5. Eric Peron, MACIF 2009, 13.5
6. Jeanne Gregoire, BANQUE POPULAIRE, 15.2
7. Francisco Lobato, ROFF, 36.0
8. Romain Attanasio, SAVEOL, 39.0
9. Eric Drouglazet, LUISINA, 44.8
10. Anthony Marchand, BRETAGNE - CREDIT MUTUEL ESPOIR, 53.9

www.transat-benodetmartinique.com

Brad Van Liew Expected In Charleston Tomorrow
Solo sailor Brad Van Liew is under 200 miles off the coast of Charleston on his 60ft yacht Le Pingouin and is predicted to finish tomorrow, Tuesday April 19, around 0800 EST (1300 UTC). Van Liew set sail from Punta del Este, Uruguay, on March 27 on the fourth leg. Having won the previous three sprints, the 43-year-old currently tops the Velux 5 Oceans leaderboard and is expected to receive a hero's welcome when he arrives in his home port of Charleston.

Brad Van Liew, 43, hails from California but now lives in Charleston SC. An adrenalin junkie and qualified pilot, he is among the top solo sailors in the USA. He is also the father of two young children who have been travelling the world to experience his adventure. Brad has completed the race twice before and won his class in the 2002/3 edition.

velux5oceans.com

European Sailing Federation
Over the weekend of 9th & 10th April, 34 European countries gathered together in the city of Helsinki to discuss Innovation in the Sport of Sailing. This included the new on-line education system for Race Officials, the newly extended and exciting European Sailing Calendar for 2011, and to hear about developments in the management of events, including the role to be played by social media.

The EUROSAF Race Officials' Academy, is an on-line education system designed to help improve the quality of Race Officials and is now close to enrolling its first students. The system is expected to be fully operation by the summer and the first associated seminar is scheduled to take place in Hungary later this year.

Several new events for 2011 were announced including the European Youth Sailing Games, scheduled for Lake Garda, Italy, from 13th - 18th August and the High Performance Grand Prix, taking place on the Mar Menor in Murcia, from 13th - 16th October.

The Youth Sailing Games are the forerunner of the EUROSAF Youth Sailing, European Championship to be held in Århus, Denmark starting on 4th August, 2012 and the High Performance Grand Prix brings together some of the top sailors in the world, with exciting non-Olympic sailing boats and Kite-Boards, in a combined classes event, which will be visually spectacular for all to see.

Elections were held to appoint two Vice-Presidents and the successful candidates were Dr. Oleg Ilyin from Russia and Dr. Panayiotis Kontides from Cyprus.

2010 saw Gyorgy Wossala retire as President and the election of Marco Predieri to replace him. The meeting recognised the enormous contribution made by Gyorgy (George) to the development of sailing in Europe by presenting him with a cut glass silver champagne bucket, engraved with the signatures of all those who had served on the Executive under his leadership.

eurosaf.org

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Click on image to enlarge.

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Gladstone Crews Face Unstable Weather
Weather forecasters are predicting a light head wind start to the Queensland Cruising Yacht Club's 63rd Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race off the historical Sandgate Pier at noon on Good Friday.

They are expecting light 5 knot northerly sea breeze which will hardly allow the more powerful yachts including the 2009 and 2010 line honours winner the Mark Bradford helmed Brisbane sloop Black Jack to generate an exciting boat speed to challenge their 21 hour 52 minute 23 second elapsed time set last year.

This relatively unstable forecast for the Easter holiday weekend is in complete contrast to the wild weather which dumped torrential rain on Moreton Bay during the past 24 hours while a 41 knot Easterly gust sent the Cape Moreton wind speed recorder into overdrive at 1-30 pm yesterday.

Unless there is an unforeseen change the super fast line honours trophy contenders Black Jack, Lahana, Brindabella, Spirit of the Maid and Hooligan could face some time occupying an aquatic parking lot along the northern Sunshine Coast beaches on Good Friday night.

All five big boat skippers and their tacticians have agreed the 20 hour 24 minute 50 second record set by the Grant Wharington skippered Victorian maxi Skandia Wild Thing in 2004 will remain as the present wet and windy weather system slips away into the Tasman Sea.

While Race Director Herb Prendergast remains optimistic he and other long term Gladstone Race sailors have prepared to face a tactically tormenting challenge to maintain the required handicap rated boat speed to become the 2011 winner of the prestigious 63year old trophy The Courier-Mail Cup.

A slow start and a fast finish could favour the lower handicapped race veterans the Peter Kerr skippered 1964v race champion Pagan and her match racing rival 1964 MacDonald helmed 1959 Sydney Hobart race champion Cherana. -- Ian Grant

www.brisbanetogladstone.com.au

Training Ireland Launched by Chairman of Sail Training International
The newly established Sail Training Ireland for Youth Development (STIYD) was officially launched by Nigel Rowe, President and Chairman of Sail Training International at a ceremony in Dublin Port this afternoon. Following the sinking of the Asgard II and the decision to wind up Coiste An Asgard, the future of sail training in Ireland had been uncertain but STIYD will now ensure the continuation of the long standing Irish maritime tradition.

At the launch Nigel Rowe also announced that Sail Training International had awarded STIYD with a bursary of €10,000 to help fund the participation of young Irish trainees in The Tall Ships Races 2011. Mr. Rowe remarked "It is wonderful to see Sail Training Ireland for Youth Development emerge from all the uncertainties and anxieties that followed the demise of Coiste an Asgard. The commitment and enthusiasm of the people who have made this happen will ensure its success, and they will have the full support of the international sail training community. With Waterford as a host port for this year's Tall Ships Races we have already committed more than €10,000 to help fund the participation of young Irish trainees."

The aims and objectives of Sail Training Ireland are to promote the development and education of young men and women through the Sail Training experience regardless of nationality, culture, religion, gender or social background as well as to sponsor and support sea-going trainees.

Sail Training Ireland is also seeking to appoint a part-time manager to help with the development of a business plan and the day to day running of the organisations affairs. Further information on the position and a full job description can be found on the STI website www.irishsailtraining.com . Closing date for applications is Friday 22nd April.

Fremantle To Bali Yacht Race
The Fremantle Sailing Club are celebrating the return of their marathon 1440 nautical mile yacht race and rally to Bali after a 14 year hiatus.

A five-year event partnership with the Indonesian Government's Ministry of Culture and Tourism has made the return possible, and marks the 30th anniversary of the event.

Fremantle to Bali 2011 consists of two races, an ocean rally which commences on April 23 and a yacht race on April 26.

The racing yachts will sail non-stop to Bali and are expected to start crossing the finishing line at Benoa Harbour from April 29.

The rally fleet will sail in a non-competitive format and will make one to two stops along the WA coastline before crossing into Indonesian waters.

A trophy presentation will be made at the Sanur Beach Hotel on May 10.

Further event information is available from www.fcs.com.au

By Ashlee Crabbe in Western Australia Today:
www.watoday.com.au

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Heading To Hyeres
A field packed full of Olympians and World Champions will attend the Semaine Olympique Francaise in Hyeres, France, the fourth regatta of seven on the ISAF Sailing World Cup series, from 22-29 April.

The ISAF Sailing World Cup standings have taken some shape after the Trofeo S.A.R. Princess Sofia MAPFRE in Palma, Spain. And with World Cup regattas in Holland, Great Britain and Germany to follow Hyeres the competition is tight.

In accordance with the ISAF Sailing World Cup Series Scoring System sailors who have competed in all three regattas will take their two best results to Hyeres.

The 115-boat Laser Radial fleet in Hyeres will feature nine of the top ten sailors in the ISAF Sailing World Cup Standings.

Ireland's Annalise Murphy, who had a bright start at the Trofeo S.A.R. Princess Sofia MAPFRE with a 2-1 on the opening day but finished 11th, is the only sailor in the top ten who won't feature in Hyeres.

In the Finn, Ben Ainslie (GBR) and Giles Scott (GBR) have sailed in all three of the ISAF Sailing World Cup regattas so far. The British duo have been head and shoulders above the rest of the fleet sharing the spoils each time

Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page (AUS) have put in some strong performances in the three ISAF Sailing World Cup regattas so far. Their seventh place finish in Palma has been their most disappointing result but having won Sail Melbourne and finished second at the Rolex Miami OCR they have a possible 39 out of 40 points to their name and lead the Men's 470 Standings by three points.

Sixty crews will compete in the Women's 470 and the fleet will include World #1 Ingrid Petitjean and Nadege Douroux (FRA) who will be sailing in their second ISAF Sailing World Cup regatta this season.

In the Paralympic classes 23 sailors will sail in the 2.4mR including Thierry Schmitter (NED) who has finished second and first in the two ISAF Sailing World Cup regattas he has sailed in so far. Schmitter tops the Standings.

Eight crews will sail in the Sonar including John Robertson (GBR), Bruno Jourdren (FRA) and Udo Hessels (NED) who make up the top three places in the Sonar ISAF Sailing World Cup Standings. -- ISAF, sailing.org

Event site: sof.ffvoile.net

Solo Round the Isle of Wight Race Abandoned
35 yachts were on the line Saturday 09.30 for the sixth Solo Round the Island setting off with the ebb tide into a few knots of SW breeze. The tide, wind and boat speed all worked to produce enough apparent wind to have an excellent race to the Needles.

The three Mini's - Crean, Prim Avel and Mad Dog raced neck and neck all the way and conditions proved perfect for those who had invested in Code Zeros to see if they really are an advantage upwind. Carl Wilcox certainly got it right taking Wee Bear - Projection 920 to near the front of the fleet amongst the faster boats.

The fleet spread tacking down the full width of the main channel to be sluiced out through Hurst. Solan Goose of Hamble was first around the Needles, a few yachts going through the gap off the needles and one gently "dinged" the Varvassi wreck.

The fleet then struggled to make much headway east to St Catherine's where a time check had been added to create a possible early finish. For a while the boats inshore under the cliffs had less adverse tide and pulled level with front runners. Very light airs further out gradually enabled some to set spinnakers and pull ahead of the inshore boats that started reversing to the SW.

Regrettably short of a very late finish after the tide turned the race was abandoned at 14:45.

It is planned to try the RIOW again as one of the September or October races if conditions allow to find the sixth winner for the Anticipation Cup. -- Mike Saqui

www.yachtsandyachting.com

Industry News
Yachts & Yachting, the iconic yachting magazine first published in 1947, has been acquired from GNM Media by The Chelsea Magazine Company.

The title will keep the same team on editorial and sales. 'I have always been passionate about delivering a high quality product for both readers and advertisers,' said editor Gael Pawson, 'and I'm looking forward to continuing to develop Yachts & Yachting.'

With 63 years of heritage behind it, the magazine now has a fantastic future in the hands of publishers who really care about their titles, she added.

The Chelsea Magazine Company also publishes Britain magazine on behalf of Visit Britain and other market leading titles such as Artists & Illustrators and Cruise International.

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As part of Henri Lloyd's long term strategy to become a more environmentally sustainable company, they are delighted to announce their continued official partnership with The Green Blue, the environment initiative of the Royal Yachting Association and the British Marine Federation.

The Green Blue personnel will wear clothing from Henri Lloyd's technical range, including the acclaimed Blue-Eco Collection and in return will provide advice on energy saving technology and services. In a bid to spread the environmental message further, The Green Blue will also offer Henri Lloyd staff members and distributors practical advice on sustainable boating.

Henri Lloyd's innovative Blue-Eco collection has been successful in winning the DAME Awards in both the Clothing and Most Eco Friendly product categories. The range also gained further acclaim at the PSP Southampton Boat Show 2010 by winning two further Environmental Awards. -- henrilloyd.com

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Leading Australian clothing brand Zhik has underlined it's commitment to the UK market by appointing two times Moth World Champion Simon Payne to head up their operation in the UK. Payne's sales and marketing company, which is based in Emsworth, Hampshire, will represent and market the Brand and provide a local contact point for British customers.

Zhik have already signaled their intent towards the UK keelboat market. They have recently been announced as the title sponsor for the Laser SB3 World Championships in Torquay in May, and defending World Champion Jerry Hill, with his crew Grant Rollerson and Matt Alverado will all wear the ISOTAK range during the competition.

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The audited number of unique visitors to the China (Shanghai) International Boat Show was 21,000 from over 70 countries.

The show does appear to have reached capacity at its current site with getting around from hall to hall requiring more weaving past others than at any show before so it is fortuitous that from 2012 the show will be sited at the former World Expo site across in Pudong where it will benefit from the massive infrastructure and transportation investment that Shanghai City Government made for the Expo.

In addition the new site is right beside the Huangpu River bringing with it boundless opportunities for on the water display and demonstration.

So the 2011 China (Shanghai) International Boat Show is the end of an era perhaps and next year the Show completes its journey from humble beginnings in an underground car park to one of the finest venues anywhere in the world.

Beneteau launched their new Sense 50 to China on the Saturday afternoon of the show, draping the yacht in a huge red cloth only to remove it symbolicly at 4pm on the Friday of the show. Symbolically for the Shanghai Show as well as the world's largest sailing yacht builder choosing to launch their new model here rather than any other Chinese Show sends a very clear message to the industry.

There were 400 exhibitors from more than 20 countries with over 300 real boats and a further 100+ model boats.

Turnover was up threefold to an incredible RMB 1Bn, that is almost USD150m.

The Charity regatta raised several '000'sRMB 'Hands on Shanghai' a charity benefitting migrant workers children. This was a combined effort by CIBS, Team Four Dragons, Shanghai Boat & Yacht Club, Shanghai Yacht Club and Shanghai Model Boat Sailing Club and in addition to assisting with hands on Shanghai's fundraising also gave their beneficiaries an experience they otherwise would have not had access to.

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The Last Word
The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong. -- Mahatma Gandhi

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