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Kiteboards, Mackay FX and Nacra 17 for Rio 2016
The International Sailing Federation (ISAF) has confirmed the final event and equipment selections for the Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition.

The ISAF Council voted that Kiteboarding will replace Windsurfing for the men's and women's board events and confirmed the equipment that will be used for the Women's Skiff and Mixed Multihull Events.

The Mackay FX, referred to as the 49er FX, was selected yesterday as the two person women's skiff and today the Nacra 17 joins the Olympic equipment family after being selected for the two person mixed multihull event.

The 49er FX received the majority of votes from the ISAF Council in the first round after the six evaluation trial entries were narrowed down to just three; the 29erXX, the RS900 and the 49er FX.

There was an equally animated debate on the final morning of the Council meeting at this year's ISAF Mid-Year Meeting to decide the equipment to be selected for the mixed multihull event. After discussing the recommendations from the Evaluation Panel, the Equipment Committee and the Events Committee, Council voted between the Nacra 17 and the Viper with the Nacra 17 securing the majority.

The final discussion on the events and equipment for the 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition was about the men's and women's board events with Council voting in favour or kiteboarding. In November 2011 an evaluation group was appointed to examine kiteboarding formats with the board events for Rio 2016 defined as 'windsurfing and/or kiteboarding'. The Evaluation Group recommended that kiteboarding be included in the ISAF Event family including the ISAF Sailing World Cup and the ISAF Sailing World Championships but Council went one step further and selected kiteboarding for the Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition as well.

The ISAF Windsurfing and Kiteboarding Committee will consider and make further recommendations to Council on the implementation of the inclusion of kiteboarding at their meeting in November 2012 at the ISAF Annual Conference.

ISAF President Göran Petersson said, "These announcements mark a new era for sailing and we welcome the new classes into the ISAF family. The equipment selections have fulfilled the criteria set out by the Evaluation Panel and we look forward to seeing the boats not only at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, but the ISAF Sailing World Cup and ISAF Sailing World Championships.

"Kiteboarding has proven to us that it is ready to be included into the list of prestigious ISAF Events and it is a fantastic addition to the sailing programme for the 2016 Olympic Games."

The events to be contested at the 2016 Olympic Games are confirmed as:

Men's Kiteboarding
Women's Kiteboarding
Men's One Person Dinghy - Laser
Women's One Person Dinghy - Laser Radial
Men's One Person Dinghy (heavy) - Finn
Men's Two Person Dinghy - 470
Women's Two Person Dinghy - 470
Men's Skiff - 49er
Women's skiff - 49er FX
Mixed Two Person Multihull - Nacra 17

These ten events will be featured in the 2012-2013 ISAF Sailing World Cup which kicks off in Melbourne in December and will come together in Santander, Spain in 2014 for the ISAF Sailing World Championships.

PUMA Lead Island Sprint
At 0700 GMT Sunday PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG (Ken Read/USA) had the biggest leading margin, 32.7 nautical miles, since the start of Leg 6 as they spearhead a sprint to the next set of Caribbean islands. Team Telefonica (Iker Martinez/ESP) have reclaimed second place after CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand (Chris Nicholson/AUS) lost 11 nm to the leaders in three hours.

Ken Read and his men left the glassy seas of Saturday at the front of the field, finding new breeze overnight midway between the Virgin Islands and the Turks and Caicos Islands. They have extended their lead at average speeds of around 17 knots, while others made losses, but with the breeze set to drop once the fleet reaches the Bahamas, the race is likely to remain open until the last few miles.

While PUMA are eating up the miles while they can, and Telefonica 28 miles further east are sailing almost as fast at 16.8 knots, for CAMPER it is rather a different story. Their course, eight miles to the west of PUMA's line has not yielded such good results and their progress in the last three hours has only been at around 11.6 knots, the slowest in the five-boat fleet.

In fourth place, Groupama sailing team (Franck Cammas/FRA) are slipping back and heading towards the dreaded 100 nm in arrears marker, while Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing (Ian Walker/GBR) are trailing by over 133 miles, having lost 10 miles to the leader in the last three hours.

The fleet are expected to cross the finish in Miami on Wednesday, May 9.

Postma Wins The Day but Scott Still Leads at Falmouth Finn Nationals
Despite race wins for Pieter-Jan Postma (NED) and Jonathan Lobert (FRA) on day two of the JP Morgan Asset Management Open UK Finn Nationals, Giles Scott (GBR) still leads the fleet into the final day by four points from Postma. Ben Ainslie (GBR) sits in third place, on equal points with Postma.

What a difference a day makes. Today the 92 strong UK Finn National fleet was treated to three fantastic races in 12-14 knots, with nice waves and even some sunshine. You could almost call it a champagne sailing day, apart from the fact that the cold water and wind-chill made it more like an ice-cold shower day.

The fleet returned to shore cold, tired and in need of sustenance, which was adequately supplied at the Royal Cornwall Yacht Club's pasta evening.

Scott is now in a great position to take his third UK National title. With a four point gap and a discard of a third, he needs just one good race to wrap it up. However Ainslie is renowned for last day comebacks, so he could very easily take his second UK title.

The championship concludes Monday with two more races scheduled, though the forecast is for a low pressure system to move over the area bringing strong winds. The situation will be assessed in the morning with the possibility of moving the course further inshore.

Top ten after five races (1 drop)

1. Giles Scott, GBR, 7 points
2. Pieter-Jan Postma, NED, 11
3. Ben Ainslie, GBR, 11
4. Jonathan Lobert, FRA, 18
5. Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic, CRO, 18
6. Jonas Høgh-Christensen, DEN, 28
7. Rafael Trujillo, ESP, 29
8. Oleksiy Borysov, UKR, 39
9. Michael Maier, CZE, 42
10. Jorge Zarif, BRA, 51

Grand Prix Les Ambassadeurs
Photo by Chris Schmid / Eye Image. Click on image to enlarge.

Vulcain Trophy Alinghi and Realstone Sailing end the weekend of Grand Prix Les Ambassadeurs level on points, but Alinghi wins the event thanks to one more victory in all 14 races sailed during the event (5 wins for Alinghi vs. 4 for Realstone).

The general ranking went through a lot of changes today. De Rham - Sotheby's, skippered by Philippe Cardis, moves up one place overall with two nice races today, while the crew of Zen Too, after its capsize yesterday, had promised some action today. And action there was, with a win in the first race and a second place in the last one.

All crews have commented the new race format, which opens further tactical options, but also brings more suspense because it allows many ranking changes during the regattas. "This new race format is very demanding! The legs are very short; you have to maneuver a lot. That's why it is important for the crew to be well trained" said Yann Guichard, tactician aboard Ladycat, 4th overall.

Next event in two weeks in Crans (Open de Crans, 26-27 May)

* Artemis Racing had a pretty good day with scores of 5,2,5,6 and held our third place overall. We were pretty pleased with that result considering we did very little training as a complete crew prior to the regatta.

Alinghi and Realstone ('the kids') tied for first place overall, but Alinghi won the tie breaker due to having more first place finishes. Alinghi won the last two races of the weekend, while the kids finished 7, 3 and thus closed the gap and forced the tie. Realstone is known as "the kids" as the crew are all about 23 years old or younger and they train a lot. They trained for two months in the D35 prior to this weekend and it showed. Very smooth on boat handling and they know the lake pretty well.

We were just two points ahead of Lady Cat this morning so we were happy to extend that gap to eight points by the end of the weekend.

The Southwesterly wind was shifty as always and in the last race there were some very large "holes" of no wind. There was so much passing and being passed that I can't possibly recount it all. Suffice to say that it was never over until you crossed the finish line and often boats made big comebacks after being last after the first lap.

I want to thank Yvan, Frank, Gilles, Sarah, Noel and Maxime for a great job this weekend! 14 races is a lot and the wind was up so the crew work load was high and everyone put in 110%. Catamarans are fast and fun but also a lot of work. Sailing a D35 with six gives one a good appreciation for the AC45 which is sailed with just 5 crew and the AC72 with its 40 meter wing which will be sailed with just 11. -- Paul Cayard / Artemis Racing

Overall ranking:
1. Alinghi, 29 points
2. Realstone Sailing, 29
3. Artemis Racing, 54
4. Ladycat, 62
5. De Rahm - Sotheby's, 63
6. Zen Too, 66
7. Okalys - Corum, 70
8. Nickel, 85
9. Veltigroup, 102

SEIKO 49er Worlds
The 49er Class has returned to Zadar, Croatia to dispute the SEIKO 2012 World Championship with some of the best sailors in the world. 78 teams representing 32 nations have arrived in Zadar not only to claim the remaining 5 country slots for the 2012 Olympics but to test their skills for the upcoming Games against the best sailors as well as claim the title of 49er World Champion.

The last time the 49er Class was in Zadar was in 2009 for the European Championship where Pietro and Gianfranco Sibello of Italy were crowned champions. Fitting as Pietro will make his debut after a lengthy medical hiatus that will find him back on the water with his brother with hopes to qualify Italy for the 2012 Games.

While several teams have already been named by their Federations for the 2012 Olympic Games and will use these Worlds as a testing grounds, there are still several nations that have yet to name their team.

Australians Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen who sit atop the ISAF rankings are here with Nathan trying to win his fourth title as skipper, the first in the 49er class.

Follow the action on with racing beginning May 7 and the prizegiving on May 12.

Eyes Turn To Venice
Photo by Gilles Martin-Raget / ACEA. Click on image to enlarge.

Venice The America's Cup World Series has moved north. After the excitement of Naples, the next stop is Venice and this past week has seen the build out of the AC Village and team bases, as well as the first test sailing by one of the teams.

Within a week of the ship containing all of the AC World Series 'materiel' arriving in Venice, team bases were sprouting up, the AC Village in the Arsenale was taking shape, the television compound on Lido Island was being erected and the Italian team, Luna Rossa Challenge, had gone for its first sail with both crews.

With just one World Series regatta under its belt in Naples, Luna Rossa is out of contention for the 2011-12 AC World Series title. But that hasn't made the team any less keen to be at the top of its game performing on home waters. It's 'Piranha' crew, led by Chris Draper, won the Fleet Racing Championship in Naples - a sparkling debut. Now the team is hoping these early practice sessions will pay dividends in Venice.

At the top of the overall leaderboard, ORACLE Racing's James Sptihill holds the slimmest of leads - one point - over Dean Barker's Emirates Team New Zealand. Artemis Racing, with an impressive Match Racing win in Naples, has closed the gap in third place.

Championship Racing starts in Venice on May 17, in the penultimate event in the opening circuit. The 2011-12 AC World Series will then conclude in Newport, Rhode Island, home of the Cup from 1930 to 1987, at the end of June.

Newport Bermuda Race Program

Newport Bermuda Race Race Program
Now posted. Features:

- New thoughts on safety
- Carina's round the world sprint to the Newport start
- Deciphering the Gulf Stream
- Boat inspectors: how they think, what they do
- A Bermuda Race sea bag
- Cruising in Bermuda's historic waters
- Classy cheap eats in Newport
- The funny side of family sailing
- The Onion Patch Series
- Notice of Race

Race Program (PDF)

El Ocaso Win The Lord Nelson Trophy
At the Final Awards Ceremony in Nelson's Dockyard, Richard Wesslund's J/120 El Ocaso was awarded the Lord Nelson Trophy for the best overall performance of any yacht during Antigua Sailing Week 2012.

El Ocaso scored seven straight wins in CSA 4 but it was far from easy. Most of the races were decided by less than a minute and on several occasion just a few seconds. El Ocaso is based in Florida but the crew comes from all over the Untied States; San Francisco, Nevada, Wisconsin and Florida. El Ocaso has had a fantastic Caribbean season winning regattas in St. Martin, St.Thomas, BVI and finally Antigua.

* Two yachts were forced to retire early after a port/starboard collision severely damaged both yachts on Day 4 of Antigua Sailing Week.

According to Peter Anthony, Chairmen of Ondeck, the crash was caused when the Oyster 82, named Starry Night of the Caribbean, crashed into the side of their Farr 65, called Spirit of Isis.

Peter Anthony, Chairman of Ondeck commented: "During the first race today one of our yachts, Spirit of Isis, was involved in a port and starboard incident with Oyster 82, Starry Night that caused serious damage to our Farr 65 and put an end to its continuation in the regatta. I would like to thank Antigua & Barbuda Search & Rescue (ABSAR) and Antigua Coastguard, as well as a boat from the Antigua Sailing Week Organising Committee, for their swift response and assistance. Luckily only very minor injuries were sustained that were treated by the ABSAR crew ashore. Once safely on the dock, the skipper and owner of Starry Night were quick to apologise for the collision showing good sport."

Ondeck are arranging a replacement yacht to enable their transatlantic charter guests to sail from Antigua to Portsmouth, UK as planned on Thursday, 10th May. Their event known as the Atlantic Challenge occurs annually following Antigua Sailing Week.

From Yachting World:

Save the date: 2013 Antigua Sailing Week will be held between 28 April - May 3.

Event site:

Running the Rhumblines
Photo by Ian Grant. Click on image to enlarge.

Team Vodafone Whitsunday Sailing Club officials generally accepted that the impressively fast course times set by the New Zealand ORMA 60 trimaran Team Vodafone during Airlie Beach Race Week 2011 would stand for some time.

Team Vodafone regularly set the speed sailing pace in the high 20 knot range and logged a peak of 33 knots when skipper Simon Hull and his thrill seeking crew dominated the overall regatta line honours trophy last August.

The power sailing Team Vodafone easily claimed the title as the fastest ocean sailing yacht in the Southern Hemisphere when the crew produced a similar display at the Audi Hamilton Island Race Week.

At the time a relatively reserved Simon Hull who had steered Team Vodafone to her impressive list of anti-foul blistering speeds said "I personally believe we have opened an exciting new playing field".

He also confidently predicted that the ORMA 60 fever would steadily become infectious to eventually have the class racing in major blue water events in The Southern Hemisphere. His vision could become a reality on the warm tropical Whitsunday Island waters later this year. Sean Langman has already nominated his Brisbane to Gladstone race record breaker Team Australia to contest the Airlie Beach Race Week Multihull championship.

Hopefully the early entry of Team Australia has set up the usual intense trans Tasman sporting rivalry to possibly force Simon Hull and his Team Vodafone to 'cross the ditch' and become tactically engaged in protecting their respected reputation of being the fastest crew to compete at Queensland's premier race week regattas.

However Team Australia which sailed her first official coastal passage race over the Easter weekend where the crew admitted to embracing a steep learning curve in managing a decisive list of split second decisions proved they are race ready to take up the challenge.

They were naturally nominated as the line honours favourite when the sails were tensioned for Australia's only official Multihull ocean race on Good Friday Morning.

At precisely 3-38-21 on Easter Saturday morning the Team Australia crew including owner skipper Sean Langman his 18 year old son Peter, talented female tactician Katie Spithill and experienced 'boat boss' Josh Alexander had completed the fastest Gladstone Race elapsed time in history.

Their remarkable course time for the 308 n/ml race was 16 hours 28 minutes 21 seconds for an average speed of 18.70 knots.

This result was a satisfying achievement for Sean Langman who already holds two of the three fastest times in the monohull Brisbane to Gladstone Race however it could be put to the test if the proud Team Vodafone crew accept the challenge to defend their line honours title at Airlie Beach Race Week from August 10-12. -- Ian Grant

Featured Brokerage
Featured Brokerage Boat 1989 Dehler 36 CWS. 47,900 GBP. Located In Levington, Suffolk, United Kingdom.

Built in 1989 and launched in 1990, this is a good example of her kind. Dehler are well regarded for their fast yet comfortable designs, and their build quality and attention to detail. Her innovative Central Winching System in the cockpit means she can be sailed easily by one or two persons, as all sail handling is taken care of by a central electric winch. Her accommodation is well laid out with two cabins and two heads compartments, which works well for two couples.

Brokerage through Why Boats:

Complete listing details and seller contact information at

The Last Word
As long as people will accept crap, it will be financially profitable to dispense it. -- Dick Cavett

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