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French Legends Race Entry
Photo by Barry Pickthall / PPL. Click on image to enlarge.

Volvo Legends Alicante, Spain: The extraordinary story of the French Viant family, whose name is engraved in the history of the first three Whitbread races, has taken a new turn as the 'clan' charters Gauloises III (1981-82) to enter the Legends regatta in November this year.

The family will race again, joining once more with some of their former teammates from Grand Louis (1973-74), Japy Hermes (1977-78) and Kriter IX (1981-82), highlighting the pioneering history of French offshore racing.

Andre Viant was the patriarch of the Viant family. He was an outstanding sailor, a highly respected French yachtsman in England - he was a member of the Royal Yacht Squadron - and was also one of the first presidents of the largest racing yacht club in France, UNCL (the national union for the offshore racing).

Back in 1973, Andre Viant chose young members of his family and those from several families of very close friends living nearby on the Gulf of Morbihan in France to compete on his own boat, Grand Louis, in the first Whitbread Round the World Race.

Among the 16 rotating crew were Jean-Michel Viant (Jimmy), Andre's son, Sylvie Viant, Andre's daughter, who became an indispensable race director of any self-respecting race in France, Bruno Lunven, a former competitor of the historic Course de l'Aurore (previously the Figaro Race), Philippe Facque, the promoter of the ORMA multihull circuit, Patrice Carpentier, the well-known sailing journalist, and Patrick Elies, the terror of the Figaro circuit in the 1980s.

Excited by their first experience of a race around the world, the young generation of the Viant clan raced again in a second Whitbread (1977-78), this time with a project initiated by three students from a business school. Jimmy Viant would skipper Japy-Hermes and he sailed with his fiancee Benedicte Lunven who would become the first Frenchwoman to compete in a round the world race.

For the Volvo Ocean Race Legends Regatta, taking place in Alicante in November this year, Gauloises III's crew will consist mainly of the Japy-Hermes original line up.

About Gauloises III (1981-82)
Rig: Sloop
Designer: Ron Holland
LOA 62' (18.89m)
Skipper Eric Loizeau
Crew: 11
Dismasted on Leg 3, 1300 miles from Auckland and retired from the race

Entries in the Volvo Ocean Race Legends Regatta and Reunion
- Copernicus 1973-74 (45' sloop: the smallest boat ever to race)
- Great Britain II/Whitbread Heritage (Maxi) took part in the first five races
- Rothmans 1989-90 (Maxi)
- Berge Viking 1981-82 (Swan 57)
- Charles Jourdan 1989-90 (Maxi)
- Steinlager 2 1989-90 (Maxi Ketch)
- Gauloises III 1981-82 (62' Sloop)

volvooceanrace.com/news/Legends-Regatta-Information/3022

Spinnaker Tales
Sunshine Coast's Rod Jones and Greg MacAllansmith have teamed up with Olympian and multiple World champion Glenn Bourke to launch a major assault on the Zhik Laser SB3 world championship in England later this month.

The Queensland trio of top line one-design sailors have the potential to upset the British domination who has ruled the waves winning all three previous World championships. For Glenn Bourke the CEO of Hamilton Island international resort the championship hosted by the Royal Torbay Yacht Club from May 16-20th will represent a return to familiar racing waters. He is very familiar with the strict type of one design racing in the Laser SB3 having won the British championship while managing the globe circling Volvo Ocean Race.

All three highly successful sailors rate the Zhik SB3 World championship among the most difficult to win with the result determined entirely by the crew who sail the smartest under pressure while making the least errors in technique and tactical strategy.

While Glenn Bourke, Rod Jones and Greg MacAllansmith are respected for their individual career results they will just become a number among the 119 crews who have the same purpose in mind when the fleet line up for the opening race on May 16th.

Recent reports suggest the first of the northern hemisphere summer breeze blowing in from the Atlantic Ocean promises to test their moderate to fresh wind racing skill.

However the Queensland Club Marine crew while having limited time in racing together have slogged out the hard yards in brute breezes before.

Collectively they have the potential and one-design racing experience to be rated in the top 20 but that will depend on their ability to protect their clear wind space in the front line when the start signal is fired.

Naturally the Club Marine crew particularly Glenn Bourke and Rod Jones will target a top result before focusing their attention to host the 2012 World championship at Hamilton Island in December 2012.

Rod Jones and his well managed OceanBuro team were instrumental to introducing the exciting one-design SB3 into Australian class racing and he has progressively developed strong support from Australia's leading sailors.

Meanwhile the Club Marine crew will remain focused on the 2011 World championship which promises to test the defending champion Jerry Hill and crew mates Grant Rollerson and Matt Alverado.

They have the 'runs on the board after crewing 3 sad old blokes to victory in 2010 but that win is now history and the top team of English sailors while having the advantage of racing on home waters will be hard pressed to rule the waves for the proud sailing nation when the battlelines are drawn off Falmouth later this month. -- Ian Grant

Dubarry Lahinch - Inspired By Design
Dubarry Lahinch If you were designing the perfect bowman, you’d want them to weigh nothing, never slip up, react instantly, give you maximum support and get a round in after the race. When Dubarry was designing its new sprint deckshoe, Lahinch, they used modern materials for featherlight, quick-drying super-strength, giving you the speed and durability. Its D-chassis footbed system, inspired by Formula 1 technology, means it protects and actively supports, and its sole gives you award-winning grip. It won’t get a round in of course, but when did you last see a bowman at the bar?

Dubarry Lahinch - performance perfected.

www.dubarry.com

Blast Reach to Le Havre
Noel Racine’s Le Havre-based yacht Foggy Dew, JPK 10.10 was the first boat home in IRC Three and class winner on corrected time. Photo by Hamo Thornycroft / www.yacht-photos.co.uk. Click on image to enlarge.

RORC Cervantes Trophy Race The first race to France for the 2011 RORC Season's Points Championship proved to be a real cracker with several classes enjoying some extremely competitive racing. With over 100 entries for the race, the Royal Yacht Squadron Line was a cauldron of activity as the fleet set off downwind under spinnaker towards The Needles. After a beat around the south side of the Isle of Wight, the fleet rounded the Nab Tower to bear away for a fast passage across the English Channel. The 2011 RORC Cervantes Trophy Race provided some spectacular racing.

The majority of the fleet completed the 125-mile course in less than 20 hours. Gray and Laidlaw's Farr 52, Bob, took line honours by nearly three hours and won the Cervantes Trophy for best yacht overall on corrected time.

RORC Commodore Andrew McIrvine scored his first win of the season, taking IRC Two in his First 40, La Reponse. Neil Kipling's J 122, Joopster enjoyed the fresh conditions to claim second place in class but by less than two minutes on corrected time from X 40, Exception, owned by Frenchman Patrick Ponchelet.

Noel Racine's JPK 10.10, Foggy Dew, won class in the Cervantes Trophy for the second year running. Enjoying the big breeze, the Le Havre based yacht was the first boat home in IRC Three and class winner on corrected time.

19 yachts raced to Le Havre Two-Handed, nearly double the amount from last year's Cervantes Trophy Race. Vim scored a memorable win, beating Rolex Fastnet winner, the X 35 Exile/Mirabaud, skippered by Nicolas de la Fourniere. Peter Olden's A 35, Solan Goose of Hamble, was third.

After enjoying the warm hospitality of Le Havre, competitors returning to Cowes enjoyed a race back across The English Channel. The Trophee Guillaume Le Conquerant is organised by the Societe des Regates du Havre in association with the Royal Ocean Racing Club and the Island Sailing Club.

Racing resumes for the RORC Season's Points Championship on the 14th May with the De Guingand Bowl Race.

Provisional Results:

IRC Overall
1. Bob, Farr 52, R Gray & S Laidlaw
2. John B, Grand Soleil 54, Charles Ivill
3. La Reponse, First 40, Andrew McIrvine

IRC Zero:
1. Bob, Farr 52, R Gray & S Laidlaw

IRC One:
1. John B, Grand Soleil 54, Charles Ivill
2. Vespucci's Black Sheep, First 44.7, John Stapleton
3. Koko Kai, First 44.7, Andrew Arthur
4. Challenger 4, Challenge 72, Tall Ships/Stephen Durkin

IRC Two:
1. La Reponse, First 40, Andrew McIrvine
2. Joopster, J 122, Neil Kipling
3. Exception, X 40, Patrick Ponchelet
4. Arabella ,J 111, Niall Dowling

IRC Three:
1. Foggy Dew, JPK 10.10, Noel Racine
2. Fandango, Ff110, William Hutchinson
3. Yeoman of Wight, J 109, David Aisher/British Keelboat Academy

IRC Four:
1. Gwaihir Venturi, Dufour 34, Philippe Rios
2. Vim, Aphrodite 101, Frederic Waniart
3. Enigma, MG 346, Ian Braham

IRC Two-Handed:
1. Vim, Aphrodite 101, Frederic Waniart
2. Exile/Mirabaud, X 34, Nicolas de la Fourniere
3. Solan Goose of Hamble, A 35, Peter Olden

Class 40:
1. MAXVMG, Class 40, Mark Denton
2. Partouche, Class 40, Christophe Coatnoan

For more information including full results: www.rorc.org

Open De Espana Match Race
Open de Espana will be honoured with the presence of high level participants, four of them within the Top Ten Match Racing Ranking list.

Real Club Nautico Calpe will hold from the 3rd until the 14th of May, two Match Race international events: "VIII Open de Espana de Match Race" and "XIII Criterium Internacional Femenino". Both regattas are qualified by the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) as Grade 1, being the sole yacht club in Europe that organise two Grade 1 events, one for men and another for women, with the highest qualification given by the International Sailing Federation (ISAF).

VIII Open de Espana de Match Race that will take place in Calpe (Alicante-Spain) from the 3rd until the 7th of May, will bring the best sailors of the World Match Race Ranking, including Ian Williams and Bjorn Hansen, placed fifth and sixth in the World Match Race Ranking, and the Spanish skipper Manu Weiller.

XIII Criterium Internacional Femenino that will start on May, the 4th and will last until the 8th, is considered one of the best women's events in the Match Race international circuit.

www.rcnc.es/viii-open-de-espana

Gutek Just Over 500 Miles From Velux 5 Oceans Sprint Four Finish
Polish ocean racer Zbigniew 'Gutek' Gutkowski has just over 500 nautical miles to sail to the finish of sprint four of the Velux 5 Oceans.

The 36-year-old Polish solo skipper was just 514 nautical miles from the finish line in Charleston, USA, at the 1800 UTC position report and back in good winds after a frustrating few days of slow sailing up the coast of North America.

His good progress has come despite yet more damage to Operon Racing - this time the Eco 60's bowsprit has parted completely from the bow of the boat. It has not hindered Gutek too much however due to the angle of his course towards Charleston not requiring a spinnaker.

"Yesterday morning I noticed a crack in my bowsprit, but it all looked very stable so I continued my journey. Due to a change of wind direction I had to take down the gennaker and hoist up the Solent. Next I started to hear a weird sound. My first thought was that I had caught some fishing nets on my keel but it turned out to be my bowsprit.

"It is broken now just after the pulpit. It fell down to the water but was held on bobstay so I pulled it in and it is now safely stored. The good thing is that it broke now not in the next leg."

Gutek was today making around 11 knots towards Charleston and is expected to join the Velux 5 Oceans fleet by Thursday if he continues at his current speed.

www.velux5oceans.com

Risk To Gain - the eBook
Click on image to enlarge.

Risk To Gain - the eBook Mark Chisnell's classic account of Paul Cayard and Team EF's 1997-98 Whitbread Race victory is now available for the first time as a text-only, eBook edition. It's a unique insight into Team EF's two boats during their extraordinary journey around the world. Stomach-churning storms, frustrating calms, broken gear and a remarkable level of detail of life onboard.

'It's the best book yet on this race. Great writing...'
Yachts and Yachting

www.amazon.com/Risk-to-Gain-ebook/

Wing Technology Trickles Down To Youth Sailors
President of IODA, Peter Barclay (left), with 2011 Optimist Worlds Committee member, Peter Dawson and the mysterious wingsailed Optimist. Photo by Terry Nicholas. Click on image to enlarge.

Optimist Wing Sail When it was announced that wingsails would be used in the 34th America's Cup, many wondered how the technology would trickle down through the sport. While the final applications are far from decided, the technology has trickled down to the youth sailor in the form of a wingsail for an Optimist dinghy.

The optimist is one of the oldest, most used trainers for youth sailors. It was designed in 1947 by Clark Mills, and the square bow design with gaff rig has withstood the test of time. The International Optimist Dinghy Association has national associations in 126 countries and there are more than 130,000 Optimists registered worldwide.

It is such a popular trainer that the children of some of ORACLE Racing's teammembers own an Opti as they start what could be a career long path towards the America's Cup. Several of the design team took the initiative to adapt a wingsail for the Optimist that was trialed recently ahead of the New Zealand Optimist Nationals.

"The idea came about when talking with some 470 sailors at Wakatere Boating Club, who are always building things for boats or skateboards or surfboards," said Mike Drummond, a designer with ORACLE Racing. "The top section of our A-class catamaran wing is removable, and about the same size as an Opti rig. It was very easy to add a standard Opti mast tube to be able to step it into a normal Opti."

When it was trialed ahead of the nationals Drummond was impressed the sailors asked very good questions about how the wing works and why it has a slot. The wing isn't class legal so it won't be seen on the racecourse in the immediate future, but down the road wingsail technology will undoubtedly become widespread.

www.oracleracing.com

DMS to Sponsor British Solo Sailor Conrad Humphreys
Click on image for photo gallery.

Conrad Humphreys Conrad Humphreys announced Tuesday that DMS, one of the UK's leading CD, DVD, Vinyl and Plastic Free Packaging suppliers is to become the title sponsor for his Figaro sailing campaign. The partnership with DMS builds on from the success of their sponsorship with another West Country sailor Pete Goss, who competed in last year's Route du Rhum.

The relationship between DMS and Conrad began in 2005 when they manufactured his DVD, "Against the Odds" the remarkable story about Conrad's epic 2004-5 Vendee Globe. Today's announcement gives a welcome boost to Conrad's return to single-handed sailing as he builds a new 5 year campaign towards the Vendee Globe.

Conrad, a leading triple round the world sailor, having competed in The Whitbread Round the World Race (now Volvo Ocean Race) is the youngest skipper to win the BT Global Challenge and only the 5th Briton in history to complete the legendary Vendee Globe. 2011 marks his return to single-handed sailing after a number of seasons racing catamarans in the Archipelago Raid and the Extreme 40 Series.

Conrad, who is looking to secure a new global partner to build a winning campaign for the Vendee Globe is in France this week to race the Solo Concarneau as part of his preparation for the 42nd edition of the Solitaire du Figaro.

www.conradhumphreys.com

Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week
Toe in the Water, which takes wounded military personnel sailing as part of their rehabilitation, has been named the official Cowes Week charity for the next three years.

Since entering its first crew at Cowes Week in 2008, Toe in the Water has taken more than 120 injured servicemen and women sailing, recording top-ten finishes across numerous regattas.

Tanya Brookfield, director of Toe in the Water, said: '2011 looks set to be the biggest year yet for our tri-service initiative and we are thrilled that Cowes Week have formally confirmed Toe in the Water as the regatta's Charity of the Year for the next three years.

'This is a fantastic opportunity for us as we will be both racing and fundraising during the event. Cowes Week has always been a really special event for us as it's where we first started and the support we've received from competitors and sponsors is unrivalled and really makes a huge difference to the work we do.'

Toe in the Water will enter two J80s in this year's regatta and a Farr 45, which will be helmed by Dee Caffari and Brian Thompson at various points across the week.

Organisers have announced plans to raise the profile of family oriented activities at this year's Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week.

Recognising that many families enjoy their summer holiday racing or spectating at the event, a series of new initiatives are being introduced to help parents and children get the most of out their time at the regatta. The event will also host the first ever Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week Family Day, which will take place on Sunday 7 August.

The range of family-friendly activities at this year's Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week will feature many that are offered exclusively for the Family Day, including:

- Spot prizes on-the-water for racing families
- Special family discounts on sailing lessons, RIB rides and spectator boat trips
- Remote-controlled model-boat racing
- Promotion of Island visitor attractions

www.aamcowesweek.co.uk

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 Matteo Salva: I want to inform you that in an astonishing interview published on Friday, April 29, on Style magazine, Russell Coutts says that 65%of the budget of an America's Cup campaign is given by the cost of the crew. Beyond the reasonable doubt that this statement may correspond to the truth, Coutts puts forward a brilliant solution: reduce the numberof persons on board from 17 to 11, thus creating unemployment and discontent. He thus continues to earnhis 10 millions a year that make him be the highest paid sportsman in New Zealand. It matters little, instead, whether others, who still earn much less than him, are out of their job.

I'm the voice of hundreds of sailors, riggers, boat builders and shore managers unemployed. We all thanks Russell Coutts for this.

Article here (in Italian only): scuttlebutteurope.com/pdf/stylemagazine.pdf

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The Last Word
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