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Tour De France A La Voile
Tour Voile M34 The route of the 2010 Tour de France a la Voile has been revealed during the press conference held at Paris Boat Show. From Dunkerque to La Seyne sur Mer, this round the France sailing race will be an extreme one, as offshore legs will be either very long or very short. The race will have a quick start since most of the points will be given between the Channel and the Atlantic Ocean. Competitors will have to challenge Courrier Dunkerque, the current title holder, as soon as possible.

"The first half of the race will be of main importance from a strategic point of view since it will include two coefficient three legs." explains the race director William Borel. Three marathon legs will cover 500 miles between Dieppe (Seine Maritime) and Talmont Saint Hilaire (Vendee), including stopovers at Pleneuf Val Andre (Cotes d'Armor) and Lorient (Morbihan). On the contrary, the Mediterranean Sea will be all about inshore races, with no more than two offshore legs from Port Camargue (Gard) to Marseille (Bouches du Rhone), and from Marseille to La Seyne sur Mer (Var). The race organization should take advantage of the Southern coast to launch many triangle races.

The TFV is going back to Calais - the race stopped there in 1978. Meanwhile, there is a new stopover in North Brittany: Pleneuf Val Andre. Most cities should also celebrate the last run of the Farr 30. She will be replaced in 2011 by the M34. This one-design boat already got a proper public: almost ten boats have already been sold. The first one is expected next spring and will be named after the Nexus Dean Barker Team. The Team New Zealand's skipper is also the boat ambassador and he already announced his desire to participate to the 2011 edition - this is the reason he attended the press conference.

2010 route and calendar:

- Dunkerque: from June 26th to 29th / 25 mile-long offshore leg
- Calais: from June 29th to July 1st / 70 mile-long offshore leg (minimum)
- Dieppe: from July 2nd to 4th / 200 mile-long offshore leg
- Pleneuf Val Andre : from July 5th to 7th / 200 mile-long offshore leg
- Lorient: from July 9th to 11th / 105 mile-long offshore leg
- Talmont Saint Hilaire: from July 12th to 14th / 70 mile-long offshore leg
- Royan: from July 15th to 17th / 683 km-long road transit
- Port Camargue: from July 18th to 20th / 65 mile-long offshore leg

* At 10.34 m length, the M34 monotype is nearly one meter longer than the Farr 30. She will be able to sail on longer distances. And William Borel did announced an innovation: the creation of the first crewed transatlantic race on a one-design which will come to increase this actual circuit (the french crew championship). The first departure of this biannual race, organized like the TFV by Lariviere Organization and supported by FFVoile, will be given on winter/spring 2011/2012.

Emmanuel Archambault, the "boss" of the building site, and Alexandre Mercier, architect of the cabinet Joubert-Nivelt Design, confirmed that the first M34 should be launched in March 2010 and will be officially introduced in the next edition of the TFV in July 2010. From this date, M34 will be built at a rate of 5 units per month. -- Christophe Guigueno,,

2nd Annual Carlos Aguilar Match Race
Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, ISV: Peter Holmberg, Maurice Kurg, Morgan Avery and Ben Beer (ISV) utilized years of experience to defeat Taylor Canfield, Max Nickbarg, Tyler Rice and Chris Rosenberg (ISV) in an all US Virgin Islands final at the 2nd Annual Carlos Aguilar Match Race. Holmberg took Canfield down with two straight wins in the best of three finals in the Grade 3 Match Race in which junior sailors and locals went head to head against America's Cup skippers and sailors who have reached the top of the match race standings in their careers. In the Petite Finals, Jes Gram Hansen (DEN) defeated Colin Rathbun (IVB) 2-0. In the preceding Semi Finals, Holmberg defeated Gram Hansen 3-1 while Canfield topped Rathbun 3-1.

Racing in the beautiful natural amphitheater of St. Thomas' harbor, the sailors enjoyed 4 perfect days of sailing in the double round-robin, semi and finals event. Consistent trade winds of 10-15 knots, sunshine and warm weather treated the racers to some of the best sailing in the world. In the Women's division, the #1 Women's Match Racing team in the world, Claire Leroy, Eladie Bertrand, Clarie Pruvot, and Marie Riou (FRA) defeated the US Women's Match Racing Champion and the defending Carlos Aguilar Match Race Champion, Genny Tulloch and her team, which included Sally Barkow, Alana O'Reilly and Amanda Callahan in two matches in the first to two wins final.

Claire Leroy (FRA) and Genny Tulloch (USA) dispatched their Semi-Final opponents by winning three straight against Katy Pilley-Lovell (USA) and Julie Bossard (FRA), respectively.

Open Results:
1. Peter Holmberg (ISV)
2. Taylor Canfield (ISV)
3. Jes Gram Hansen (DEN)
4. Colin Rathbun (IVB)
5. Dave Perry (USA)
6. Chris Haycraft (IVB)
7. Fritz Bus (AHO)
8. Mauicio Gallardo (ELS)

Women's Results:
1. Claire LeRoy (FRA)
2. Genny Tulloch (USA)
3. Julie Bossard (FRA)
4. Katy Lovell (USA)
5. Liz Baylis (USA)
6. Renata Decnop (BRA)
7. Kelly Obrian Uzenski (ISV)
8. Maria Ramires (POR)

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Second Edition of World Yacht Racing Forum
The principal actors of the world yacht racing scene are on their way to the second World Yacht Racing Forum from 9-10 Dec in Monaco. Over 350 delegates are expected whilst 50 speakers and 80 journalists from all over the world have confirmed their participation.

The event begins tonight, December 8, with an official cocktail reception at the Yacht Club de Monaco. WYRF Chairman and World Champion Sailor Peter Gilmour will then officially open the Forum on Wednesday 9 December before handing over to keynote speaker Tom Whidden, President of North Sails, who will talk about the "state of the industry". Debates and presentations addressing some of the key issues our sport faces will follow. Topics include:

- The commercial case for yachting sponsorship - Can sailing deliver value for money?
- Can yacht racing deliver economic returns for host cities and ports?
- The measure of success - evaluating the impact of sponsorship value
- Leveraging a sponsorship deal - how do we maximise the investment?
- Tapping into new media audiences - The future of sailing on the web, in gaming and television

The Forum's second day will begin with a keynote address by double Vendee Globe winner Michel Desjoyeaux. It will be followed by four debates on the following subjects:

- Cost cutting measures - Who is trimming event costs for today's economy?
- Governing the sport - What can sailing learn from other sports?
- What is the case for multihull racing?
- The America's Cup - What is the future for the challengers after AC 33?

The World Yacht Racing Forum is for the first time this year co-located with the inaugural Yacht Racing Design & Technology Symposium and 1st International Superyacht Coatings Conference. The three events have attracted a huge amount of interest from the Yacht Racing community and an impressive line-up of speakers, sponsors and delegates will be reassembled in Monaco.

Fourth Entry Confirmed for the Velux 5 Oceans
Click on image to enlarge.

Velux 5 Oceans Clipper Ventures today confirmed Polish skipper Zbigniew Gutkowski as the fourth entry in the new Eco 60 Class in the VELUX 5 OCEANS 2010-11. The experienced skipper, known as "Gutek", joined Sir Robin Knox-Johnston and the Mayor of La Rochelle at the Nautic Boat Show in Paris to launch his campaign "Polish Ocean Racing" for the next edition of The ultimate Solo Challenge.

Gutek (36), is one of the leading sailors in Poland, with a wealth of competitive offshore and inshore racing experience, with over 100,000 miles onboard 60 foot multihulls and 60 foot monohulls. He will announce his boat, sponsors and partners in Poland in January before beginning preparations in earnest for the start of the VELUX 5 OCEANS from La Rochelle in October 2010.

Zbigniew, who hails from Gdansk, is a former member of Poland National Sailing Team in Olympic Class 470 (1987 -1995) and has also competed at the highest level in the 49er Class. In 2001, he was Watch Captain onboard WARTA-POLPHARMA in The Race, the non-stop race around the world for multihulls, and in 2005 he skippered the ORMA 60 Bonduelle in the Nokia Oops Cup. He also attempted to break the monohull record for a non-stop circumnavigation onboard the Volvo 60 Bank BPH ex ASSA ABLOY, but damage forced the crew to Cape Town after 9,500 miles.

* A commitment to promoting sustainability around the world in the first ever Eco 60 race The VELUX 5 OCEANS today launched its sustainability agenda under the banner of 'Taking on the Elements'. The concept brings together all the key stakeholders in the race under the umbrella of the shared value of sustainability, providing a basis of understanding and a platform for activities and communications in 2010 and 2011.

Taking on the Elements defines the vision, strategy and tactics under which Clipper Ventures as race organiser, VELUX as title sponsor, La Rochelle as start/finish port, the other host ports around the world and all future race partners and suppliers can embrace a message of sustainability through the platform of The Ultimate Solo Challenge.

At a race reception at the Nautic Boat Show in Paris, Chairman of Clipper Ventures Sir Robin Knox-Johnston was joined the Mayor of La Rochelle Maxime Bono and President of VELUX France, Michel Langrand. The three main players in the VELUX 5 OCEANS 2010-11 all outlined their commitment to Taking on the Elements and promoting sustainability across the world.

Michel Desjoyeaux Awarded 2009 French Sailor of the Year
Photo by Franck Faugere / DPPI / FFV. Click on image to enlarge.

Michel Desjoyeaux Michel Desjoyeaux was named yesterday evening the 2009 French Sailor Of The Year, during the traditional "Soiree des Champions" organized by the French Sailing Federation. The winner of the Vendee Globe succeeds to Francis Joyon, Round The World Record Holder and 2008 Sailor Of The Year. Michel Desjoyeaux received this price for the third time. The ceremony was held in the Edouard VII Theatre, in Paris, France, during the city Boat Show. Michel Desjoyeaux won this trophy over three other nominees.

The three other nominees were:

Antoine Albeau
Slalom World Champion

Pascal Bidegorry
North Atlantic Record Holder (3 days, 15 hours, 25 minutes and 48 seconds with Banque Populaire V)
24 Hours Record Holder

French Young Sailing Team
Volvo Young Sailing ISAF World Champion

French Sailors Of The Year from 2001 to 2008 :

Michel Desjoyeaux
Winner of the Vendee Globe (93 days, 3 hours and 57 minutes)

Olivier Backes and Laurent Voiron
2nd of the Tornado World Championship and European Champions

Xavier Rohart and Pascal Rambeau
Star World Champions

Faustine Merret
2004 Olympic Games Gold Medallist (Athens)

Vincent Riou
Winner of the Vendee Globe (87 days, 10 hours, 47 minutes and 55 seconds)

Lionel Lemonchois
Winner of the Route du Rhum - La Banque Postale in Multihull 60'

Michel Desjoyeaux
Winner of the Transat Jacques Vabre
Winner of the Solitaire Afflelou - Le Figaro

Francis Joyon
Round The World Record Holder

Get (Or Give) A Subscription... Get Get London Show Tickets
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Two Santas for the Optimists
Santa Claus was celebrated at two separate venues this last weekend! A total of 676 Optimist sailors from 22 countries participated in the two regattas held in southern Europe which celebrated the widely observed feast of St. Nicholas.

In Mallorca the Trofeo Ciutat de Palma attracted 368 sailors from nine countries while 1,000km to the east Pula in Croatia saw 328 participants from 13 countries at the Sv. Nikolas regatta.

Both event were very much festivals of sailing with the Croatian event even divided into the under and over 12s, but both were won by veterans of the summer's Worlds: Carlos Robles (ESP) in Spain and Carlotta Omari (ITA) in Croatia.

Next week the Optimist action moves to Malaysia where the IODA Asian Championship takes place in Langkawi while the year end sees the Orange Bowl in Miami followed by the IODA Oceanian Championship in Adelaide, Australia.

Links to all events via

Lenjohn Van Der Wel is the Tenth Entry in the Global Ocean Race 2011-12
Bahamas-based South African sailor Lenjohn van der Wel today confirmed his Team Entry in the 2011-12 Global Ocean Race.

Van der Wel and his brother Peter - both former superyacht captains - started the 2008-09 edition of the race but were forced to retire into Cape Town shortly after the start of Leg 2 with a variety of issues onboard their Class40 Kazimir - Ocean Warrior.

"We were bitterly disappointed to retire from the last race so there is definitely unfinished business out there for me," said a very upbeat Van der Wel. "I have been planning this race entry for some months and now it is time to commit," he explains.

Van der Wel's Class40 is an Owen-Clarke designed Express 40, built for him in Cowes, Isle of Wight, in 2007. She is already fully equipped to Category 0 race standards and her popular skipper is now putting together the operating budget for his Global Ocean Race campaign.

Funding will be through a mixture of corporate sponsorship and co-skippers paying to race individual legs of the circumnavigation as part of the team. Van der Wel already has strong interest from a number of sailors ready to join him on the adventure of a lifetime, but anyone that is seriously interested can contact him directly via the team website

Same Fellows, New Name
Racing at Petit Bateau ltd becomes Solo Offshore Racing Club ltd and the new web site is

The new club has evolved from the very successful Racing at Petit Bateau group, organisers of single-handed races since 2004 and continues under the established management team of Paul Peggs, Peter Olden and Jerry Freeman.

The aim of the club remains to support and expand solo racing in the UK through a series of day races that both encourage new comers and test the experienced skippers.

The 2010 race programme has been published and includes established events such as RIOW solo, Channel week and the Solent Solo Series. New for 2010 are two passage race weekends, to Poole and to Weymouth, designed specifically to encourage skippers who wish to try solo racing for the first time and in familiar waters.

The club also organises the Solo Racing Festival in Southampton, this popular event has moved to a bigger venue in the Solent University Conference Centre to accommodate the growing numbers of solo enthusiasts attending on Saturday March 6th 2010. The first 50 tickets are on sale on the web site.

To celebrate the ten years since a small group of solo sailors formed Petit Bateau in the winter of 2000 the founders have planned a supper meeting to coincide with the London Boat show and welcome friends old and new to the Master Gunner on Thursday 14th January.

Details of the programme of races and events can be found on the new web site

Soloceans: Collision and Evaluation
This message was received from Liz Wardley last Tuesday morning onboard the SolOceans One-design to Yvan Griboval (President of SailingOne), while she was at around 150 nautical miles South-West from Finistere (Brittany - France): "It happened at around 0330 UT, I was sailing at 20 Knots with one reef in the main-sail and the staysail and a 25-knot wind. I fell again from a wave much bigger than the other one and that's when we hit something with the hull bottom at the level of the cockpit behind the engine. I didn't see anything outside; I don't know what it was, maybe a cetacean or something soft floating in the water. I don't have a waterway, the structure of the boat looks intact, but I think the sandwich construction is starting to delaminate at the level of the bulkhead of the cockpit. I'm heading towards Brittany (France) that I should reach at around 11.00 UT on 2 December."

This afternoon at Port-La-Foret, the maritime expert Emmanuel Le Borgne - who was also Michel Desjoyaux's crew onboard Foncia during their victory in the Transat Jacques Vabre 2007 - and Jean-Marie Vaur (JMV Industries), builder of the SolOceans One-design series in Cherbourg, intervened on the boat. The conclusion is that the shock taken by the Liz Wardley's SolOceans One-design during the storm off Ouessant was frightening indeed but did not hurt eventually. "The first investigations show that on the flattest part of the hull the taping of the cockpit bulkhead has come away from the hull ", Manu Le Borgne declared. "The core borings made on the carbon sandwich show that the honeycomb is intact and not damaged". On his side, Jean-Marie Vaur added: "The small part that is damaged is a secondary structural element, and has no effect on the reliability of the main structure, which is absolutely not damaged ". It will take less time to repair than thought at the beginning, when the news of the shock was known. Nevertheless, Liz Wardley will have to wait around a week before resuming her navigation on the first leg of the Round-the-world Reference Tour of the SolOceans - OceanoScientific Campaign 2009-2010 towards Wellington (New Zealand).

ISAF Offshore Special Regulations for 2010-11
The International Sailing Federation (ISAF) has today published the 2010-11 edition of the ISAF Offshore Special Regulations.

The ISAF Offshore Special Regulations ( ) are used by race organizers to provide uniform minimum equipment, accommodation and training standards for monohull and multihull yachts racing offshore. A number of changes made at the recent ISAF Annual Conference affect the new 2010-11 edition of the Special Regs. Unless otherwise specified the amendments are effective 1 January 2010. An amendment sheet containing all the changes can be viewed at

It should be noted that national prescriptions may take priority over the ISAF text and sailors should check with their relevant authority.

For a full report on the changes to the Offshore Special Regulations, the minutes of the meeting from the ISAF Annual Conference can be viewed at the ISAF Meetings microsite -

ISAF Offshore Special Regulations -

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The Last Word
All laws which can be broken without any injury to another, are counted but a laughing-stock, and are so far from bridling the desires and lusts of men, that on the contrary they stimulate them. -- Baruch Spinoza

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