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Constant Lead Changes as the Front Trio Keep It Tight
After two days at sea on Leg 3, the double-handed, Global Ocean Race (GOR) Class40s are dropping sharply south-east into the Pacific with the first three boats keeping close formation as they run off the wind in 30 knots of breeze in the Roaring Forties, leaving Chatham Island port.

In the 02:00 GMT position poll on Tuesday, the Franco-British duo of Halvard Mabire and Miranda Merron had re-taken the lead with their Pogo 40S2 Class40, Campagne de France, after handing over the leadership briefly to Ross and Campbell Field on Buckley Systems late on Monday night and relinquishing pole position to the New Zealand-South African team of Conrad Colman and Adrian Kuttel earlier in the evening as their Akilaria RC2, Cessna Citation, clipped averages of over 13 knots. Hitting the highest fleet averages at 13.3 knots an hour later, Buckley Systems was back in the lead at 03:00 GMT with Mabire and Merron less than three miles astern and Colman and Kuttel a further nine miles back down the race track.

GOR leaderboard 03:00 GMT 31/01/12:

1. Buckley Systems DTF 5628 13.3kts
2. Campagne de France DTL 2.2nm 12.7kts
3. Cessna Citation DTL 11.5nm 12.2kts
4. Phesheya-Racing DTL 56nm 10.4kts
5. Financial Crisis DTL 63kts 10.8kts

Monsoon Surge Awaits
This afternoon Team Telefonica led the fleet out of the Singapore Strait and into the South China Sea where the fleet face more than 1000 nautical miles of tough upwind sailing to the Leg 3 finish in Sanya, China.

"It is very going to be very rough racing with gale force winds predicted and a very rough sea state building" - Gonzalo Infante, race meteorologist

At around 1605 UTC today the leg and overall race leaders passed the Horshburg Lighthouse marking the end of the straits section of the leg with a lead of around less than 20 minutes over second placed Groupama sailing team.

PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG were a further seven nautical miles behind in third.

More than 20 nm back Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing and CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand are separated by less than a mile in fourth and fifth respectively, with Team Sanya more than 140 nm off the lead in sixth.

Infante predicted the going would get tough as the teams trek north towards the Vietnam coast with a building monsoon surge generating strong winds and a four to five metre swell.

A faster than expected passage through the Malacca Strait has seen the estimated time of arrival for the leading boats move to around February 4.

Racing To Bermuda
After several days of banging into it, you're feeling a little weary and a trifle sore. Then Gibbs Hill Lighthouse rises above the blue-green sea, and, almost tasting the rum punch, you sail a little harder. You're almost there, at Bermuda.

I've raced to Bermuda nine times and written the race's history (A Berth to Bermuda), and there are very few tests of blue-water seamanship as iconic, popular, and accessible as the 635-mile Newport Bermuda Race.

One of few races sailed almost entirely out of sight of land, it was founded in 1906 as a bold challenge to traditional notions of who should go to sea in what vessels.Thomas Fleming Day, the visionary founder, was convinced that blue water is a suitable playground for amateur sailors in normal sailboats. Drifting around in a bay or harbor "will never do for those that have the love of the great ocean planted deep within their hearts," Day declared. "Sailors wanted to get a smell of the sea and forget for the time being that there is such a thing as God's green earth in the universe." -- John Rousmaniere

More at :

Seahorse March 2012
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine

Right place right time
Sixty years young the RYA Dinghy Show still stands unique in the world of small boat racing

My time
Ben Ainslie and Blue Robinson discuss keeping non-participants off the field of play...

Design for manufacture - Part II
SP-High Modulus chief engineer Rod Fogg responds to some of the points raised in last month’s opening feature

Oak trees
We knew that we should soon expect to see more offshore scows, but not that the next one would be a Maxi. Jim Pugh and Michael Roberts

If you haven't subscribed to Seahorse already we're keen to help you attend to that! - Please use the following promotional link and enjoy the hefty Scuttlebutt Europe discount... and it gets even better for 2 and 3 year subscriptions...

Thies Matzen and Kicki Ericson Win 2011 Blue Water Medal
New York, N.Y., USA: The Cruising Club of America (CCA) has awarded its esteemed 2011 Blue Water Medal to Thies Matzen and Kicki Ericson for a commendable 24 years and 135,000 miles of sailing the oceans of the world with a focus in the high latitudes of the Southern Ocean. The first Blue Water Medal was awarded in 1923; and is given to "the most meritous example of seamanship." Its recipient is selected from among amateurs of all the nations." The medal will be presented by Commodore Daniel P. Dyer, III at the annual Awards Dinner on March 2, 2012 at New York Yacht Club in Manhattan.

Matzen was born in Germany in 1956 and grew up to be a wooden boat builder. In 1981,Matzen purchased Wanderer III, a 30 foot wooden sloop, built in 1952 for Eric and Susan Hiscock who made two circumnavigations with it and received the Blue Water Medal in 1955.Matzen sailed Wanderer III to Scandinavia where he cruised extensively, including to the Lofoten Islands (Norway), and then crossed the Atlantic Ocean. In 1989, while sailing in the Caribbean, he met Swedish-born (1964) Ericson, and the two have lived on Wanderer III ever since. After leaving the Caribbean, the duo sailed through the Panama Canal and into the Pacific Ocean where they spent seven years traveling from site to site. After that, Ericson and Matzen sailed to Indonesia, explored the Indian Ocean, and sailed around the Cape of Good Hope (South Africa).

From 1997 to 1999, Matzen and Ericson did two circuits of the South Atlantic, starting in Cape Town (South Africa) and visiting Argentina, The Falkland Islands, and South Georgia before heading back to Cape Town (South Africa) and South America, where they rounded Cape Horn before returning to the Pacific. The couple's last twelve years have been comprised of exploring sites in the Southern Ocean, including Tasmania, The Auckland Islands, Antarctica and the Falkland Islands. Recently the two spent 26 months in South Georgia. Currently, Matzen and Ericson are in Brazil and plan to do some work on Wanderer III, which has been kept in its original condition with no electronics onboard except a VHF radio and handheld GPS (added in 2007). The vessel has a 16 horsepower diesel engine and the hull, rigging and gear have been self-maintained using traditional methods.

Jeremie Beyou Making His Comeback
Jeremie Beyou announced on Friday morning that he will be taking part in the 2012-2013 Vendee Globe aboard the monohull on which Michel Desjoyeaux won the last edition of the race. Jeremie Beyou will be making his return to the round the world race thanks to the support of his new partner, the Vendee based company Maître Coq, which specializes in high quality poultry products.

Following the recent registrations from Alessandro di Benedetto (ITA), Jean-Baptiste Dejeanty (FRA) and Samantha Davies (GBR) last December, Jeremie Beyou's announcement takes us to sixteen skippers registered, fulfilling the goal set for the next Vendee Globe of seeing between 15 and 20 skippers lining up.

He was there at the start of the 2008 Vendee Globe, but after damage to the rig of his monohull, Jeremie Beyou was forced to suspend his race on 23rd November and head for the port of Recife in Brazil, where he announced his retirement from the race shortly afterwards.

He began ocean racing at the age of twenty and having taken part in 12 Solitaire du Figaro events and 11 solo transatlantic crossings, Jeremie Beyou recently won the 2011 Transat Jacques Vabre (double-handed with Jean-Pierre Dick) and achieved his second victory in the Solitaire du Figaro (2005 and 2011). On board the monohull which Michel Desjoyeaux sailed to victory in the last Vendee Globe, Jeremie will be at the helm of a boat that should allow him to show everyone the full extent of his talent.

'2K' Format Will Be New Lease of Life for Team Racing
Irish team racers, and those whose college sailing days are behind them, can look forward to rediscovering the joys of a new kind of team racing writes our Correspondent, Magheramore.

The Dutch have discovered team racing. They have become very keen on two boat team racing in keel-boats with 30 teams competing in their National Championships. Realising the potential for this version of the sport a major international event is planned in September this year, and there is a bid to run an official World Championships in 2013.

An international circuit is now emerging for this discipline - now known as 2k. Events are planned on the Clyde, in Italy, Poland, England and the Netherlands. The potential is considerable. In many countries sailing centres have fleets of small one design keel-boats already used for match racing. 2K racing increases the number of days these fleets are in competitive use. There is also a well established circuit in the USA, where the Sonar is commonly used. There are even events organised especially for the more mature sailor.

The development of 2k racing is an opportunity for clubs. Team-racing, in all its forms, creates a dynamic within the club, as teams train and compete and socialise. Graduates, who seem to find the Firefly gets smaller every year, can relive the exploits of their college days without breaking the bank. As events can be graded, adult trainees can experience the joys of competitive sailing at level suited to their ability. Sailing club boats will increasing look an attractive proposition to the negative-equity generation

All in all, the Dutch initiative to develop team racing in keelboats is to be welcomed. Irish team racers, and especially those whose college days are behind them, can look forward to rediscovering the joys of the squeeze, the mark trap and the sweet sound of the umpire's whistle!

Italian 470 Breaks Away from Turner and Drummond
Four days of racing have now been completed at the 470 Junior World Championships at Takapuna Boating Club on Auckland's North Shore, and two more days of full racing remain before Friday's medal races for the top ten boats in each fleet.

The Italian duo of Simon Sivitz Kosuta and Jas Farneti are leaps and bounds ahead in the Men's fleet, winning every race except the very first. The pair of twenty year old Aucklanders James Turner and Finn Drummond sit in second place overall after eight races.

In the 470 Junior Womens fleet, Afrodite Kyranakou and Jeske Kisters of the Netherlands are leading by five points, closely followed by last years' female world champion Annika Bochman with crew Elisabeth Panuschka of Germany. Top Kiwis are Erica Dawson and Vicky Francis in 6th overall, closely followed by Wellington sisters Sarah and Emma Berry in 7th.

Eight races have been completed so far over the whole range of wind conditions, and the event is on track to finish all races as scheduled. Wednesday and Thursday will have two races each per day and the final double point medal race will be on Friday February 3rd.

The forecast looking ahead to Friday is for a South Easterly wind, and if this eventuates, the finish line of the medal races will likely be just in front of the Takapuna Boating Club, easily viewed from the beach.

Provisional Top five- January 31st

1. Simon Sivitz Kosuta / Jas Farneti, ITA, 7 points
2. James Turner / Finn Drummond, NZL, 29
3. Matthew Crawford / Robert Crawford, AUS, 35
4. Sacha Pelisson / Nicholas Rossi, FRA, 41
5. Alexandros Kavvas / George Kavvas, GRE, 42

1. Afrodite Kyranakou / Jeske Kisters, NED, 11 points
2. Annika Bochmann / Elisabeth Panuschka, GER, 16
3. Anna Burnet / Flora Stewart, GBR, 17
4. Chika Hatae / Eri Hatayama, JPN, 26
5. Sascha Ryan / Jamie Ryan, AUS, 39

Full results on the event site

Industry News
Held at Alexandra Palace in London over the weekend of 3-4 March 2012, the RYA Volvo Dinghy Show, in association with Yachts and Yachting and Suzuki, is the friendliest boat show in the UK.

"We have some great talks, coaching sessions and exhibitors lined up for the 2012 show," said show manager Helen Waterhouse, "and being an Olympic year we will, of course, be celebrating with the official launch of the RYA's Our Sporting Life - Sail for Gold exhibition, showing the history of British Olympic sailing."

Also lined up for this year's show is a Jack Holt centenary celebrations display, RS Tera design a sail competition, the RYA Volvo Dinghy Show SailX Championship finals and the Volvo Chill out zone.


Southern Spars has launched a brand-new website at . With an emphasis on quality information, imagery and interactive elements, the new website provides existing and prospective customers and suppliers with considerably more detail about the Southern Spars' global operation than the previous version of the site.

The Southern Spars website also features race and regatta results - including a timeline of victories of yachts carrying Southern Spars mast and rigging packages, details of the company operating facilities, profiles of team members, newsletters and a regularly updated portfolio of current and completed projects. Links to the company's social media activities, downloads of recent newsletters and technical details of the company's proven manufacturing and R&D processes make for interesting reading, all accessed through easy-to-use drop-town menus or the comprehensive search facility.


Groupe Beneteau has released its forecasts for the 2011/12 financial year, stating that total boat sales are expected to be down 10.7 per cent to €620m. Nevertheless, the figure outperforms Beneteau's estimated drop in the global boating market of 20 per cent.

Beneteau says that its housing business will see growth in the region of 3.5 per cent, reflecting the good performance by the outdoor accommodation sector combined with the first year of mobile home production in Italy and the relevance of the wooden-frame house offer for residential housing.

As a result, the group's consolidated sales for 2011/12 are estimated at €855m, down 7.2 per cent.

"For the Boat business, 2011/12 is expected to be marked by significantly different trends depending on the markets, with the European region penalised by the climate of unease seen this autumn-winter, during the main period for taking orders," says the company. "This unprecedented situation is expected to temporarily have an adverse impact on the group's business."


The Tullet Prebon London Boat Show has reported that visitor numbers were down 6% on last year, despite multiple shows being combined together and London's relatively milder weather. On the day we visited, hundreds of school children were being chaperoned around the show in the morning, but in the evening, the 'Black & White' bar was very busy.

It's a shame that events like Brian Thompson talking about his experience as part of the record breaking round the world voyage on Banque Populaire were only watched by a handful of people.

A total of 134,753 visited ExCeL London across the 10 days, with 102,841 of those attending the Boat Show. In a bit of PR juggling, the show is happy to report that numbers are up on 2010 (102,655 Visitors - the lowest attendence since 2002).

Visitor numbers in the years preceding the Global Financial Crisis were between 130-150,000 people.

But visitor numbers isn't the only measure of a successful show and exhibitors seemed pleased with trade over the 10 days. Sales made at the show are vital for exhibitors' business plans for the year and the sector has shown resilience in the face of continuing economic turmoil.


At the commencement of the 175th Anniversary year, the Commodore, Flag Officers & Executive Committee of the Royal Southern Yacht Club in Hamble, Hampshire, are pleased to announce the appointment of Chris Pullinger as Club Secretary with immediate effect.

Chris brings a host of skills and experiences gained from his professional hospitality background to this significant role having benefited from the knowledge drawn from his former position as the Club's House Manager.

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 David Villiers-Child: Re: Rodney Pattison's letter in our sister publication (see ) on the folly of the Medal Race...

Rodney is of course absolutely right as your other commentators but it is worse than that.

I was recently at a sailing Supper Club where the after meal talk was by one of the organisers of the Olympic Regatta, as the talk progressed some were feeling increasingly concerned.

Also present was Rod Carr, who is I think the overall boss, or that is the impression he created. (Field of play manager?)

A person of some stature in the word of sailing asked of our lecturer "But the competitors are still the most important people aren't they?"

Before the lecturer could respond there was a loud emphatic "No they are not" from Rod Carr!

I need add no more.

Except perhaps to pretend that the Olympics are for the youth of the world has probably not been realistic for quite a long time, the suggestion in 2004 that Greece should become the fixed venue looks increasingly attractive, it might even help the Greek economy.

Featured Brokerage
Featured Brokerage Boat 1987 34' Pescott Performance Cruising Catamaran. A$ 155,000. Located In Phuket, Thailand

On a passage the boat is sailed very easily single handed or by a couple. Returning to Australia in 1992 after the first cruise to Thailand, Summersalt did the 2500 miles from Singapore to Thursday Island in 18 days thru the reef strewn waters of Indonesia. This passage was done 2 handed with the autopilot steering nearly all the time in mostly variable but following winds. The fact that the only form of charging for the single 75amp battery was one 42 watt solar panel is indicative of how easy the boat is on the helm, even in following seas.

In 2004 Summersalt had a refit in Phuket with the cabin being raised to give a head room of 1.58m in the saloon.

In 2007 all the standing rigging was replaced as were all the halyards. On one hull the bottom has a copper-epoxy treatment with antifoul on the other hull.

Brokerage through Pippen Marine:

Complete listing details and seller contact information at

The Last Word
Whether it be a matter of personal relations within a marriage or political initiatives within a peace process, there is no sure-fire do-it-yourself kit. -- Seamus Heaney

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