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Light Airs on the Regates Royales
The light easterly wind put at test the crews', and especially the tacticians' ability on day 3 of the Regates Royales - Trophee Panerai in the sun bathed bay of La Napoule. The race committee was forced to wait until the early afternoon hours to fire the start signal for the classic yachts. Two races for the Dragon fleet, where three boats are tight at the top, and everything will be decided tomorrow...
Veering from south-westerly to easterly the wind has decidedly died down on the Bay of Cannes, only seven or eight knots for the start. The 68 boats had then to take multiple tack to reach the first mark just in front of the Lerins Islands and as many spinnaker gybes to get to the downwind mark at Esquillon.
The shifty, light air going lighter and lighter as the boats were approaching the pointe de l'Aiguille creating an enormous traffic jam. The smaller boats had the best of the situation, being more at ease in the flimsy wind. As it was the case of Bona Fide, winner of the Traditional Yacht prize in 2010, that crossed the line with more than half an hour lead on her adversaries. Built in 1899 by Albert Yard in Cowes and designed by Charles Sibbick, this gaff cutter created for the so called Godinet rule, won no less than eighteen races in the Mediterranean before taking part to the Olympic Games in Paris. In the "Five Tonners" division, Bona Fide took the gold medal flying a UK flag. After having sailed for many years on Italy's Lake Como, the boat was left in a state of complete neglect and only saved after four decades by American architect Doug Peterson. Bona Fide passed in the care of owner Giuseppe Giordano who completely restored her, with the help of craftsman Carlo Terramoca, and was re-launched in 2003.
Nico Budel Joins the GOR Fleet
The 72 year-old yachtsman and his co-skipper, 56 year-old Ruud van Rijsewijk, took two weeks to sail from the yacht's homeport of Scheveningen on the Dutch coast, through the Straits of Gibraltar to Palma, Mallorca, completing a voyage that would have tested lesser sailors to the limit. Shortly after leaving Holland, Budel and Van Rijsewijk were battered by gales that swept through Northern Europe as they entered the English Channel, forcing the duo to find shelter in Eastbourne on the English South Coast for two days.
Budel has taken the GOR's 'Team Entry' option and will swap co-skippers during the stopovers in Cape Town, South Africa; Wellington, New Zealand; Punta del Este, Uruguay and Charleston, USA. The highly-experienced, 72 year-old yachtsmen will be sharing the 30,000 mile circumnavigation with two of his sons for the Southern Ocean legs with Frans Budel racing Leg 2 and Bas Bax-Kiburg joining the boat for Leg 3. His delivery co-skipper, Ruud van Rijsewijk, will start the race with Budel for Leg 1 and Erik van Vuuren will join Nico and Sec. Hayai for the final two Atlantic Ocean legs.
With three days remaining to the start at 14:00 local time (12:00 GMT) on Sunday, some of the teams are still working hard. The New Zealand - Spanish duo of Conrad Colman and Hugo Ramon landed corporate funding in the past week and are busy with a team from Weflex fitting - according to Ramon - 'very secret systems' to their newly-christened Akilaria RC2, Cessna Citation. Moored next to Colman and Ramon, Halvard Mabire and Miranda Merron's immaculate Pogo40S² Campagne de France is in the very final stages of preparation having spent the night across the Marina de Mallorca at the STP Shipyard for a bottom scrub.
The New Zealand father-and-son team of Ross and Campbell Field ventured out for a final test sail in light airs on Wednesday with their Verdier-designed Class40 BSL. "We've sent one sail back to the loft for an adjustment and we're waiting for a couple of packages to arrive," reports Campbell Field. "But that's about all that's left to do." With both of the team's wives in Palma, the Fields are enjoying the free time. Indeed, Campbell and Tracy Field's one year-old son, Fraser, took his first, faltering steps in the GOR Race Village. "It's a bit of a worry that his first steps were in a beer tent," admits the proud father.
Can America's Cup Turn a Profit?
The concept is largely Russell Coutt's vision of a means of commercialising the Cup by splicing it into a continuous, self-supporting circuit, and it is being done with no expense spared.
The man who has been taken on to oversee its transformation into a going concern is Richard Worth, chief executive of the America's Cup Event Authority (ACEA). Worth's background is in marketing the UEFA Champions League. Football also has its own billionaire investors yet generates huge revenues in its own right. Can the same be done with sailing?
The scale of the risk is breathtaking, considering the sums of money and the short runway involved. "From the start of the World Series to the end of the America's Cup, the total cost is in the hundreds of millions," admits Worth. The figure, according to another ACEA source is around $300m. The investment in TV staff and equipment alone is said to run to $16m.
How is that funded? "The ACEA and the America's Cup Race Management are effectively borrowing money from Oracle Team," says Worth.
So ultimately, Larry Ellison is writing the cheque.
I ask Worth about the business plan for the World Series. "It would be normal in football to think of 80 per cent of the revenue coming from football and 20 per cent from sponsorship. In sailing, I think it will be the other way round," he says. -- Elaine Bunting, her full blog post in YachtingWorld.com:
Sail Faster And Smarter!
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Day Three In Palma Keeps Kilroy On Top
Palma de Mallorca, Spain - The third day of the 2011 Melges 32 World Championship delivered two more races under pristine conditions. Lots of sunshine, hot temps and just enough breeze enabled John Kilroy's Samba Pa Ti to stay at the top of the chart. Seven points back, Italy's Lanfranco Cirillo on Fantastica is seated in second overall and Yukihiro Ishida's Yasha Samurai is third.
Friday's racing will officially put the Championship over the "hump" and on the homestretch to a grande finale with Kilroy enjoying a nice lead. But, the event is far from over and any sensible Melges 32 racer will agree, the winner is still too early to call, even despite Kilroy appearing to be the strongest and most consistent. The title is not out of reach for Cirillo, or Ishida.
Top Ten Results (After 6 Races, 1 Discard)
1. John Kilroy/Vasco Vascotto, Samba Pa Ti, 9 points
Official Event Website: www.cyberaltura.com/melges32/home/home_uk.php
Artemis Offshore Academy Selection Trials
The tough Selection Trials are a chance for aspiring sailors from any discipline to try solo and short-handed racing and see if they have what it takes to join the Development Squad. The successful applications chosen for the second Development Squad will train with the Artemis Offshore Academy in the south of France this winter leading into a summer of short-handed training and competitive Figaro events based in the UK and France.
The Artemis Offshore Academy has invited 14 male and 2 female candidates to attend the Selection Trials next week with the 16 candidates being divided into two groups – each group attending a 3-day Selection Trials process. For the first group the Artemis Offshore Academy are keeping the format of the Selection Trials a closely guarded secret to ensure that the second group do not have an unfair advantage, but from next Thursday you can follow Group B to see what the candidates will be doing on the Selection Trials.
Group A - 26th – 28th September
Group B - 29th September - 1st October
DIMC Watersports Season Opens
Dubai International Marine Club (DIMC) opens the watersports season this Friday 23rd September with the Traditional 22ft Dhow Sailing Race. Fifty-five entries will take part in the first of four races in the 2011 - 2012 calendar. Al Zeeb, Al Wasf and Al Iz who ended last season with 20, 21 and 27 points consecutively are favourites having each won a race during the last four round championship. Skill, teamwork and concentration are all key elements to dhow racing as much as making sure the sails and hull of the boat are in tip top condition as a breakage or slip up can add unwanted points to the overall score.
Mohammed Hamad Al Ghashaih, skipper of Al Wasf works hard toward improving his team and boat. 'Sailing is a passion for me and I love to win.' He said. 'The competition is strong and the teams all train hard, it's important to have trust within your team and develop together. I race in the 43ft class as well and think that competing in the 22ft class has made me a better sailor. It's a good class to start in.'
A hundred and eighty 22ft traditional dhows competed over the 2010 – 2011 season, up to a hundred and thirty managed to compete in all the races and the remaining boats managed at least two rounds. 'As many of the sailors will compete in two or three classes it can be quite a commitment as we will hold as many as 20 sailing races in the different classes over the year ' said Saeed Hareb, President of the UAE Marine Sports Federation and CEO of DIMC.
'We are committed to preserve the traditional races of the region and we probably have the best success rate in the world in this field. To retain the traditional element the races are only open to UAE Nationals in the 22ft class and through this we have introduced something like 1000 locals to the sport of sailing over the last few years.'
Minoru Saito has Returned Home to a Hero's Welcome
But Japanese sailor Minoru Saito also had to contend with back pain, a hernia, a knee operation and organising delivery of his heart tablets - perhaps unsurprisingly, bearing in mind that he is 77-years-old.
Mr Saito yesterday broke a series of records - and defied all pensioner stereotypes - as he sailed into Yokohama port to a hero's welcome after an epic 1,080-day journey sailing single-handed around the world.
Stepping onto the floating pier and accepting bouquets of flowers, he told the Sunday Telegraph: "I'm very, very happy to be back but it was difficult. It was my longest trip. It went on for months and months and years and years, I had so many problems. But it's great to be back."
He added: "I missed a lot of things, mostly cherry blossoms and Japanese food. But I feel very young in both mind and body and I feel I'm in great shape."
The word "retirement" not featuring in his vocabulary, he went on with a laugh: "I'm already thinking about my next trip. I'd like to head to Greenland and Alaska next. I just need to raise the money and then I'll go off again."
He added: "I missed a lot of things, mostly cherry blossoms and Japanese food. But I feel very young in both mind and body and I feel I'm in great shape." The word "retirement" not featuring in his vocabulary, he added with a laugh: "I'm already thinking about my next trip. I'd like to head to Greenland and Alaska next. I just need to raise the money and then I'll go off again."
It was in October 2008 that Mr Saito set off from Yokohama on a trip that he initially hoped would last only 287 days on board his prized 56-foot sailing boat, Nicole BMW Shuten-dohji III. -- Danielle Demetriou in The Telegraph
Dubarry Crosshaven - The Best Gets Better
You'd have to go around the world to find a better boot than Dubarry's Ultima or Shamrock - so they did. Green Dragon's raced round the world in Dubarry boots and their Southern Ocean feedback helped to create the world's best offshore boot. Top of the Dragons' list was a waterproof built-in gaiter with top draw-cord to make sure your foredeck forays don't result in a bootful of briney. They're warmer too, lined with GORE-TEX® Duratherm waterproof insulation, heel and toe reinforcement and a new super-supportive footbed inspired by Formula 1 technology.
Dubarry Crosshaven - boots born in the Southern Ocean.
Corsair / Seawind Australian Multihull Championships
Trilogy was the nominated favourite to win but her crew of Ben Kelly, Brendon Mann and Harry Bethwaite provided skipper Keith Glover with the power sail shapes which ultimately allowed Trilogy to finish as the star performer against some serious competition.
They were equally impressive winning the first race in a 4knot drifter to mastering the rig stressing 26knot sea breeze to record the same result in races two and three before showing they were the masters in today's relatively pleasant 9-15 knot breeze adding another two comfortable wins.
Collectively over all five races Trilogy finished first with a race aggregate of 9 minutes 40 seconds faster than her nearest rival the George Owen skippered Victorian catamaran APC Mad Max.
There is little doubt that the recent rig upgrade including a canting mast, a wind efficient square top main combined with the sail trimming expertise of the Ben Kelly, Brendon Mann and Harry Bethwaite made a major contribution to this outstanding result.
Naturally Keith Glover complimented the performance of his crew who clearly showed their class which paved the way for Trilogy with her total 5 race winning aggregate of 46 minutes 57 seconds to become crowned as the 2011 Corsair Marine Australian Division 1 champion with a race to spare.
"This is very much a team result" A relatively reserved Keith Glover said.
Interest in tomorrow's final passage race will centre on the duel between APC Mad Max and the Julian Griffiths steered Hot Vindaloo for the minor places.
APC Mad Max with a best four from five race score of 2-4-2-3 leads Hot Vindaloo 3-2-3-4 by a narrow one point margin with the pressure on the Hot Vindaloo crew to finish ahead of APC Mad Max to claim second place under the count back rule.
Linda Renouf has steered Dash to an unassailable 4 point lead in the Division 2 class after recording an impressive 3-1-2-1-2 score in a varied and testing range of winds from a frustrating drifter to a fresh and frightening sea breeze.
Her consistent score has secured the championship while Frassid (Shaun Fishley) will need another top three result to fill second place ahead of the Iain MacDougall skippered Gold Finger.
Further information is available from Mike Hodges on 041188 8850 or Ian Grant on 0427 592 664.
Newly Founded Sailing Club Organizes Winter Series Off Medemblik, Netherlands
Coming winter the HRC will organize winter series out of Regatta Center Medemblik for ORC and Sports boats.
ISAF Request Proposals for Women's Skiff and Mixed Multihull
ISAF will invite Member National Authorities to nominate sailors to test sail and report back on the proposed boats and ISAF will also appoint an evaluation group with representations from the relevant ISAF committees
The final decision will be made by ISAF Council at the 2012 ISAF Annual Conference in Dublin, Ireland.
Dr Jason Smithwick, Head of Technical and Offshore at ISAF said, "We look forward to seeing well-developed boat proposals that will not only challenge the best athletes in the world but also be cost effective for our sailors and MNAs.
"Safety and transportability are a crucial part of the selection criteria and it is also important for the proposed equipment to appeal to spectators, media and sailors.
"ISAF will ensure the evaluation and trials process will be thorough and objective with a clear selection plan."
A notice of intent to participate, the application fee and supporting documentation shall be supplied to ISAF no later than 90 days prior to the trials date.
Further information is available in the two request for proposal documents.
A very smart example of this capable cruiser racer with few miles under her keel. Nicely kitted for racing or fast cruising. Significant price reduction for July 2011 - owner's age beginning to tell!
These boat details are subject to contract. Note: Offers on the asking price may be considered.
Brokerage through Boatshed St Malo: www.yachtworld.com/boatshedstmalo/
Complete listing details and seller contact information at uk.yachtworld.com
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