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J Class Solent Regatta
Photo by Ingrid Abery, www.ingridabery.com. Click on image for photo gallery.

J Class Solent Regatta Friday saw another magnificent day's racing for the Js. Race 2 got underway on the wind towards Lymington against the last of the flood tide in a 15 knot Westerly breeze.

Ranger and Velsheda approached the leeward end of the line early and Ranger found herself trapped between the inner distance mark and the committee boat. Velsheda had to restart after being two seconds early for the gun. Lionheart and Rainbow made clean starts but Lionheart flew a protest flag after being fouled by Ranger, who was clearing the line on port.

The long beat on the last of the flood tide to Solent Bank typified racing in the western Solent. Lionheart led followed by Rainbow, Velsheda and Ranger. Places did not change on the run back to Elephant.

The breeze freshened as the yachts headed West again, this time to Lymington Bank mark where Lionheart consolidated her lead, putting a loose cover on the fleet. Here the tail-enders closed on the leaders with the strong Westerly tide. The leader, Lionheart, did a gybe set and headed back to the mainland shore to find the shallow waters, and Rainbow and Velsheda followed.

With little to lose and some distance behind, Ranger headed for the island shore. While this is the shortest distance back to Gurnard for the finish, the three yachts on the mainland shore gained from the significantly weaker tide.

The finish saw Lionheart take the gun, followed by Velsheda,  Rainbow, and Ranger. However, Velsheda won the race by just 5 seconds with a small handicap advantage; amazingly close racing for such big boats over such a long distance.

A huge fleet of spectator boats followed the race and they witnessed some of the most fantastic racing seen in the Solent since the 1930s. Friday promises more spectacular racing; It is the final day of the Solent series and any boat can win the regatta on this race - Lionheart, Ranger, and Velsheda simply need first place to win the regatta, while Rainbow needs first place as well as a third or fourth-placed finish for Lionheart.

The Js race for the Hundred Guinea Cup on Saturday. The intention has always been to set the course East around the island on Saturday but this will be dependent on weather conditions.

We expect even more spectators on Friday and Saturday, where the fleet of race marshals will need to work hard to prevent the spectator boats from interfering with the racing. A full race commentary is available on VHF channel 06.

www.jclasssolentregatta.com

Clipper Race Last Sprint Starts
Photo by Peter van Aalst. Click on image to enlarge.

Clipper Race The world's longest ocean race is drawing to a close and after a great stopover in Den Helder, on the most northern coast of the Netherlands, the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race fleet today started Race 15 to Southampton at 11:00 GMT. As the fleet contended with fierce winds of 20-25 knots, De Lage Landen was first to cross the line in its home port, closely followed by Gold Coast Australia and Singapore.

With just one point separating current third placed Singapore and fourth place De Lage Landen on the overall leader board, it will be a fight to the finish line as the final podium position in Southampton is still to be decided.

Gold Coast Australia is now unbeatable in first place and Visit Finland is secure in second place. Further down the leader board it remains tight to call, with several teams within just a few points of each other, all the teams energy will be focused on climbing to the top half of the table.

Mixed weather conditions await the fleet in Race 15 and ahead of today's departure, De Lage Laden skipper Stuart Jackson said, "The wind is going to be fairly strong to start with and then ease off as we make our way through the North Sea and back down the English Channel to the Solent. We are going to try and get a good jump right from the very start to get out ahead and lead the pack."

The Clipper Race fleet will arrive in Southampton this Sunday, 22 July to a huge celebration after 51 weeks of ocean racing, visiting 15 ports of call on six continents. This will complete the world's longest ocean race, seeing around 500 people from all walks of life celebrating their remarkable achievement after nearly twelve months at sea.

Details on the festivities in Southampton can be found at www.clipperroundtheworld.com/racefinish

Henri Lloyd & Clipper Round The World Race Celebrate Partnership at the Race Finish and Look Forward To The 13/14 Race
Henri Lloyd Atmosphere 3 At the Clipper Race finish this weekend, Official Technical Clothing Supplier Henri Lloyd will be honouring their long term partnership with the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race by launching the Henri Lloyd Clipper Race Seamanship Award which has been created to recognise the lengths a crew member or team will go to help each other and/or preserve the equipment on board.

Henri Lloyd has already announced that they will be continuing their longstanding partnership with the race, and we are looking forward to meeting crew members from the 13/14 Race at the official Henri Lloyd Stand within the Race village, where we shall be selling Henri Lloyd technical products and official 13/14 Clipper Round the World Race products.

www.henrilloyd.com

Red Hot Audi All4one
Photo by Nico Martinez, www.martinezstudio.es. Click on image for photo gallery.

Copa Del Rey Palma de Mallorca, Spain: Light wind conditions prevailed in day 4 of the 31st Copa del Rey Audi Mapfre, in spite of what the fleet delivered some of the tightest and most tactical racing until now, what brought several amends to the race committee. Jochen Schuemann's All4One clinched back-to-back wins in today's two races, thus climbing to the top spot in the IRC1 overall classification after 7 races. RÁN holds to the lead although Shockwave and Stig were today's two winners in as many races, and Alegre also remains leader among the Soto 40, with an increased advantage of 7 points upon Iberdrola.

The wind pattern of around 15 knots from the Southwest-West that prevailed the three past days switched to a Southerly-Southwesterly light breeze of around six knots at the beginning of races today, gradually picking up and reaching 12 to 14 knots in the early afternoon.

Demanding conditions and very tactical racing in a very decisive day in which discards came into effect in the X-35 and J-80 divisions.

Wind was best on the left hand side of the course today as the first IRC 0 start was launched. RÀN didn't perform at her best in today's first race and finished third, and could only improve by one point in race two where she was second, but the Swedish boat holds to a six point lead over second classified Shockwave of George Sakellaris, which was first in the first race, and third in the second.

Racing in IRC 1 was marked by a tete a tete between All4One and Audi Azzurra Sailing Team which finally fell on the French-German side. The TP52 skippered by Jochen Schumann clinched back-to-back wins dominating both races from beginning to end, what made them real and corrected time winners.

Discards came into effect today in the J-80 and X-35 division after their eighth race.The J-80 division sees Carlos Martinez's Mapfre increase her lead thanks to her rival's Nextel's over the line in the first race and a fourth place in the second, whereas Martinez was second and first.

In X-35 yesterday's leader Hotelplan - Spirit of Nerina could only manage an eleventh and an eighth place in today's two races. First is now Margherita - Jsteam de Roberto Mazzucato thanks to a first and a second, whereas Finnish Samuli Liesti'sAudi Ultra lie in second.

Tomorrow two more windward-leeward races shall be launched, and discards will come into effect for divisions racing in compensated time.

www.prensarcnp.es/copa10/principal/index_uk.php

Transat Quebec Saint-Malo: A Race Like No Other
Photo by Xavier Dachez. Click on image to enlarge.

Quebec St. Malo Created back in 1984, the Transat Quebec Saint Malo immediately stood out as one of the most fascinating events in the international offshore sail racing scene. As the start of the 8th edition gets nearer, the gun will be fired next Sunday, activity bustles on the pontoons of the Bassin Louise for the 25 participants.

For more than three decades, the only West to East, fully crewed transatlantic race has seen some of the offshore stars participating and winning it, from Titouan Lamazou to Loick Peyron or Franck Cammas, and has managed to keep its unique flavour and appeal.

The race features the most unusual of offshore courses. Before taking on the north Atlantic Ocean off Newfoundland and the island of Saint-Pierre et Miquelon, the 25 crews will have to manage the long descent of the St Lawrence disseminated with hurdles and traps, affected by strong currents, sandbanks, a huge maritime traffic (with more than 4.000 ships passing every year from mid-March through December) in one of the areas most populated by marine wildlife. "One does not win the race on the St Lawrence but can well lose it there." Says Jean Claude Maltais, the Transat Quebec Saint-Malo's Race Director.

The maxi yacht Merit still holds the monohull record after 20 years, in 1992 Swiss skipper Pierre Fehlmann and his crew cover the distance in 10 days, 15 hours and 44 minutes

William Saurin is the biggest multihull to have taken part to the race, with her 25,90 metres the catamarn skippered by Eugène Riguidel stands 1,40 metres longer than Loic Caradec's  Royale 2 and 2,30 metres bigger than Serge Madec's Jet Service V.

Loick Peyron's 60' trimaran Fujicolor II is the overall record holder with 7 days, 20 hours and 24 minutes

Pogo Structures, in 2008 Halvard Mabire's Pogo 40, Pogo Structure was the first boat to set the Class40 reference time (13 days, 13 hours and 50 minutes), this year the class counts 21 boats

Crepes Whaou! in the last edition Franck-Yves Escoffier's Multi50 trimaran covered the distance between Quebec and Saint-Malo in 11 days, 03 hours and 49 minutes

The race starts on Sunday.

www.transatquebecstmalo.com
www.facebook.com/TransatQSM
twitter.com/TransatQSM

French Team: Commodores' Cup
Some Q & A prior to this weekend's start of the RORC's Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup:

Q: Can you tell us more about the French team?
A: We will race with 2 Grand Soleil and one J boat. Beelzebuth, the GS 40, just won Cowes Dinard overall, Eleuthera finishing 3d in IRC2 and Nutmeg 5 in IRC1.
We believe we have quite a strong team and moreover a winning spirit on all boats.

Q: How do you like the format this year?
A: Looks very attractive. It will be very demanding for sure with a first day on Sunday during which each boat and team will try to score its best before the Offshore race. There are enough races to make sure that the winner will have had the merit for it.

Q: What is your ambition?
A: Do as good as Franck Cammas in the Volvo! More seriously, no one is coming to such a great event not to try to win it of course. So if you ask us what we would like, you have the answer. Having said that, all teams seem quite competitive.

Q: Any concerns ?
A: Nothing in particular. Weather forecast is perfect and we will have great fun with all other crews I am sure. Just that 3 French boats in the middle of 9 British and a Honk Kong cousin is going to make our tacticians work hard !

French team's blog: www.123siteweb.fr/TeamFranceCC2012/106450145

Event site: commodorescup.rorc.org

Alex Thomson Attemps Record Transatlantic Record
Alex Thomson left New York on Tuesday at 19.09 GMT in an attempt to break the single-handed Atlantic record on his monohull HUGO BOSS. The skipper will try to sail the 2,880 nautical miles between the Ambrose Lighthouse and Lizard Point in less than 10 days, 55 minutes and 19 seconds, which is how long it took Bernard Stamm to cross the Atlantic in 2002.

"The weather forecast for the short term means that I should be able to sail the first part of the crossing within the record. But once I approach Ireland for the second half, the conditions look less ideal, so it is going to be a push to be able to break it." said Thomson.

If the British yachtsman manages to break the Atlantic record, it will also mean he will be back in England in time for the opening ceremony of the 2012 London Olympic Games.

www.vendeeglobe.org
www.alexthomsonracing.com

Artemis Racing Show The Way In Sweden
Photo by HEESEN / Carlo Borlenghi. Click on image for photo gallery.

RC44 19 July, Marstrand, Sweden: Artemis Racing were quick to show the fleet the way as fleet racing at the RC44 Sweden Cup got underway in Marstand.

After being lulled into thinking summer had arrived, the grey skies and rain returned bringing with it a light south easterly breeze that never topped 8 knots. But through the damp weather, Sweden's Artemis Racing shone.

With Torbjorn Tornqvist (SWE) at the helm and Morgan Larson (USA) calling the shots, Artemis Racing opened the day with a win. They picked the left hand side of the course, came in on the port layline, led at the top mark and then extended away from the fleet. By the finish they were over 300m ahead of their nearest rival AEZ from Austria.

The battle for the 2012 Championship does seem to be between Artemis Racing and Team Aqua this year, although Russia's Katusha are still in with a shot.

The unluckiest team of the day had to be RUS7 Sail Racing Team powered by AnyWayAnyDay.com, as the team' tactician Rodion Luka explained. "We were disappointed in the second race to get a penalty on the finish line, we had a lack of training which is acceptable and our lay-lines were not perfect, we were a little bit low so our driver didn't see the mark properly and our spinnaker touched so we had to go back to do the 360 before we could cross the line. I think we were fourth before that penalty so we lost a lot of points, but then the next race we were first, I'm very happy with the team work."

Racing for the RC44 Sweden Cup continues through to Sunday 22nd July. Tomorrow will see the fleet race for the 'Tribute to a Legend' trophy in honour of Pelle Petterson's 80th year. The two-time Swedish Olympic medallist who also skippered two Swedish America's Cup challenges in 1977 and 1980 will be a guest of the RC44 Class for racing. Follow the racing via the live tracking and blog on www.rc44.com

29er Europeans: Rainy Day Sailing
Photo by Robert Hajduk. Click on image for photo gallery.

29er Europeans Ida Marie Baad Nielsen and Marie Thusgaard Olsen (DEN) are not giving up.  The girls from Denmark kept in front of the Gold fleet with consistent sailing today in tough, fluky conditions including rain, no wind and then gusty squalls.  Their 3-6 finishes in the two races sailed give them a 10 point lead over Kevin Fischer and Yannick Jauvin of France who are tied with Marti Llena and Oriol Mahiques of Spain with 34 points.  Although at press time, the French have a protest lodged against the 5th place Polish team in race 5 which could alter their scores if the outcome turns in their favor. 

The Silver fleet were able to sail three races in similar conditions today with Anders Klippenberg and Harald Faste (NOR) remaining atop their fleet with Gael Jaffrezic and Julien Bloyet (FRA) sitting in 2nd. Unfortunately the delay in racing kept the Bronze fleet ashore and they were unable to complete any races today.

Tomorrow is the final day of racing with the prizegiving scheduled for the late afternoon.  The majority of the competitors will pack their boats and bags and head to Travemuende, Germany for the 29er Worlds which begin next week with 219 registered boats.

Live reports and daily results: www.29ereuropeans.org
Facebook: Int 29er Class
Twitter: #Int29er

L'Hydroptere.Ch Sustains Damage During New Record Attempt
Photo by Loris Von Siebenthal / Hydros. Click on image to enlarge.

Hydroptere Morges, Switzerland: l'Hydroptere.ch sustained damage this afternoon while attempting to break Lake Geneva's Ruban Bleu, a speed record around the lake from and to Geneva, over 66 Miles.

Crewed by Daniel Schmaeh, Stephane Dyen, Jeremie Lagarrigue, Guillaume Coyon, and Gael Ledoux, l'Hydroptere.ch set sail from Geneva at 11:38 and completed the first part of the course in a remarkable time. After an hour and 20 minutes of sailing, the experimental hydrofoil catamaran was just short of Le Bouveret in an exceptionally fast time, shaving 20 minutes off the record it set last week.

"We were sailing at full speed, with the catamaran perfectly positioned on its hydrofoils, when one of the two hulls ploughed sharply into the trough of a wave. We slowed abruptly, and the hull suddenly snapped at the front link arm," explains Jeremie Lagarrigue.

None of the crew members were injured, and the spar of l'Hydroptere.ch remained in place.The boat was towed to Lausanne, where detailed investigations will be conducted to discover the cause of the damage.

The Ruban Bleu record has been held since 2007 by Decision 35, skippered by Philippe Cardis in a time of 4:53:19.l'Hydroptere.ch has clearly demonstrated over the past few weeks that it is the fastest boat on Lake Geneva, but the conditions have not yet been right for setting a new record.

www.hydroptere.com

Fast Start, Slow Finish
What began as a fast start to the day turned into a slow slug to the finish at the New York Yacht Club Race Week at Newport presented by Rolex, which started its second half yesterday with an Around the Island Race and began its final four-day buoy racing session today. Seven classes--four for IRC and one each for Swan 42, J/109 and Beneteau 36.7--set out for Rhode Island Sound this morning, expecting a forecasted 5-7 knots but were pleasantly surprised when a 12 knot east-northeasterly breeze greeted them for their first race. The good luck didn't last, however, as the wind first shifted to the southeast then died altogether, keeping all but two classes from enjoying a second race.

It was close racing in all classes on the white course, which hosted the non-IRC boats, but the Swan 42s, in particular, were bone-in-teeth as they worked to get low points in the bank early. With 15 boats competing, the class is sailing its 2012 National Championship, and it was defending national champion Ken Colburn (Dover, Mass.), helming Apparition, that wound up getting the definitive jump on the fleet in the single race today. By the first mark he was leading, and on the second downwind leg of a four-lap windward-leeward course he had established a one-minute lead over Jon Halbert's (Dallas, Texas) Vitesse, with Paul Zabetakis's (Jamestown, R.I.) Impetuous and Phil Lotz's (Newport) Arethusa making strong comebacks from the left side of the course and battling for third with John Hele's (Toronto, CAN/Newport) Daring. At the finish, Vitesse ended up a full 15 boat lengths behind Apparition, with six boats going to the line for third place. Daring broke ahead by a boat length for the third, while places 4-6 and 7-9 all finished in overlapping groups.

The Swan 42s were postponed for 1.5 hours before the Race Committee dared try a second start, but soon after the boats were in starting sequence, it was clear the plan was not going to work, and the race committee postponed it, never to start again.

nyyc.org
Full results: www.yachtscoring.com

Featured Brokerage
Featured Brokerage Boat 1997 CNB Open 60. EUR 260,000. Located In United Kingdom.

"Saga Insurance" safely took sailing legend Sir Robin Knox-Johnston around the world in the 2006/2007 Velux 5 Oceans Race. This single-hander was totally refit for him and is IMOCA compliant.

This high tech, composite ocean racer, "Saga Insurance", as "Fila" took a 1st in the Around Alone '98/99 with Giovanni Soldini in Class I. This Open 60 set a new record for a distance sailed in a single-handed monohull in 24 hours.

With her canting keel, twin daggerboards and rotating mast, the IMOCA Open 60 "Saga Insurance" is very competitive.

Brokerage through Lager Yacht Brokerage Corporation: www.yachtworld.com/lagerytsny/

Complete listing details and seller contact information at
uk.yachtworld.com

The Last Word
Today it costs over a billion dollars for a space shuttle flight. The cost... is fundamentally what's holding us back from becoming a space traveling civilization and ultimately a multi-planet species. -- Elon Musk

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