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As we shut down for the night the skippers will continue to battle through the oceans in the fickle conditions of the corridor of pain. In the morning another chapter will open and more will be revealed.
Has Le Cam's westerley gamble paid off? At the 2000 ranking he was 6 miles ahead. The front runners are compressed enough so that everything is still to play for.
Armel Le Cleac'h (FRA, Banque Populaire):
"Everything is fine onboard Banque Populaire. I'm trying to find the best way to the first Ice Gate. The weather is still nice and hot. It allows me do some repairs, to clean the boat and everything. But I can feel the cold is coming, especially at night."
"You cannot be sure of anything. I'm looking at the others. My northern strategy is clear. We'll see how it goes in a few days. I'll keep on with this strategy. I'm passionate with those strategic moments. We are entering an important moment of the race. It's very interesting to see how everyone is doing. At the beginning of the Vendee Globe, it was more a speed race, now it's becoming much more strategic. I'm sitting at the map table as often as I can. We have updates every 12 hours. Around 7 AM I check it out. At this time of the race, these are very important moments."
1. Banque Populaire, Armel Le Cleac'h
Mark Turner On The Sport Of Sailing
In 2008, we asked Mark Turner, the man behind the Extreme Sailing Series how he saw the 'state of the nation'. Four years on, his response ran to nearly 2000 words of insight into the America's Cup, IMOCA class, Vendee Globe and Volvo Ocean Race...
"The differentiation and separation of the two distinct poles of sailing continues to widen – these two poles being the commercially funded professional sailing teams and events and 'private owner' primarily funded fleets racing in a mixture of event types more often than not through yacht club programmes.
Both are being affected by the tightened budgets and general economic crises in the sport's traditional markets. Such tightening, whilst painful for all of us, is also leading to the kind of debates and decisions that should have happened while the 'sun was shining'. Some less credible or solid projects are falling away, programmes that depended on sometimes hard to justify government subsidy are in question (European ones that is), and the important players are talking between them about how to work together, to merge events, to re-organise, to strengthen the offer to brands and host venues.
On the private side, what was aiming to be a commercial event, the TP52 Audi MedCup seems to have successfully migrated back to an event focused on the needs of the owners, showing that it is possible to migrate from one to the other and back again (it started out as that).
On the commercial side, the big guns like the Volvo Ocean Race have accelerated their plans to slash the cost of participation in this crown jewel, and the Vendée Globe who should be very happy with the 20 boat fleet they had in Les Sables are nonetheless posing the question about what do they need to do now for 2016 – both in commercial terms, but also, in Open class, what technically is necessary to help the commercial sell – in particular for this 'Everest' that will always have a high non-finisher rate, what failure rate is ok, and what could be managed better by the Class Rules and related decisions to take on One Design/safety margins.
Full part 1 in YachtRacing.biz:
The Whitbread Round the World Race - now the Volvo Ocean Race - spans 40 years, ten races and more than 300,000 miles across the most inhospitable seas. From gentlemanly competition in yachts designed more for graceful living than screaming around Cape Horn, the race has progressed to purpose built craft with few creature comforts, crewed by fanatical, professionals.
Millions have been spent, legends created and six men have died. No one takes the race lightly and no one tells the story better than journalists, Bob Fisher and Barry Pickthall who have been there for every race from the first in 1973. They mark the anecdotes, highlight all the major stories, and provide biographies of sailing's greatest names from the first handicap and line honour winners, Ramon Carlin and Sir Chay Blyth, to double winner Conny van Rietschoten, French legend Eric Tabarly, those great New Zealand rivals Sir Peter Blake and Grant Dalton, through to the latter day Volvo race winners. They also detail the awesome advances in design and construction that make today's yachts formidably tough, surfing greyhounds capable of hitting 40knots + and sustaining 600 mile daily runs. The book also lists every crewmember to have taken part.
176 pages. 128 colour pictures and illustrations.
By Bob Fisher and Barry Pickthall - Endeavour Books
Order online: www.southatlanticpublishing.com/sl_intro.htm
Ireland's Volvo Ocean Race Plans Hit The Rocks Over Lack Of State Help
The 2012 event was worth €60.5m to the local economy, but the voluntary group which organised it has been left with crippling debts of €600,000.
The deadline for Galway to submit a bid for the next race is December 7, but they would need to raise in the region of €11m to successfully stage the event. However, attempts to secure state backing for a further Galway bid have failed.
Organisers of the event, Let's Do It Galway, said that the lack of support from the Government made the situation "impossible". -- Caroline Crawford in the Irish Independent
49erfx Makes Debut at ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne
The 49erFX will be seen on the world stage for the first time at a major international regatta and with seven entries, five from Australia, one from Norway and one from New Zealand, it marks the start of the road to Rio.
The 49er fleet will feature 10 boats and includes 2011 runners up and brothers Sam and Will Phillips. However for the 2012 regatta the brothers have split up with Sam set to sail with Samuel Kivell and Will with Nick Brownie.
London 2012 Olympian and 2011-2012 ISAF Sailing World Cup Finn runner up, Brendan Casey (AUS) will be one of the favourites for gold in the Finn class. The Australian has had a memorable year which included a regatta victory in Hyeres, France to pick up the Australian Olympic Finn spot. He will step back into the Finn looking to get off to a flying start. Young Finn sailor Oliver Tweddell, ranked World #42, will be aiming to take the Australian Finn top spot so Casey will have his work cut out whilst Rob Coutts (NZL) could pose a threat in the fleet.
There are also five combined Men's and Women's RS:X entries as well as strong Laser, Laser Radial and Men's and Women's 470 fleets. In addition to the Olympic classes on show in Melbourne there are healthy fleets in invited classes from Optimists, OK Dinghies, the Viper multihull and Kiteboarding.
After surviving a quadruple bypass Warren Johns raced on the International circuit with the high performance sloop Heaven Can Wait now owned and raced by the Sunshine Coasts dual Audi Australian Ocean racing champion Rod Jones.
Warren Johns celebrated his 78th birthday earlier this month and was a highly respected skipper on the Australian and International yacht racing circuits will be sadly missed by his many friends including former Mooloolaba Yacht Club Commodore Tim Moore.
The benevolent Warren Johns owned the small sloop Spring Loaded which he regarded as a spare yacht 'on his books' and set up a Gentleman's agreement for Tim Moore to race her at Mooloolaba where they happily agreed to set up a boat test which lasted for several seasons before Tim Moore became the official owner.
Warren Johns was accepted as a father figure in the sport and always attracted a talented crew to race on his yachts Beyond Thunderdome and Heaven Cain Wait.
Strange as it may seem he was not a strong advocate of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race electing to point the bow of his sloops on a race course towards warmer climate destinations including Mooloolaba.
He was a past winner of the Sydney to Mooloolaba race, the Hamilton Island and Hayman Island race week trophies.
In a friendly interview at Hamilton Island in 1994, a proud Warren Johns said. I have made many friends both socially and competitively on the International circuit but I have made what I regard as a Tropical choice to only race where it is possible for palm trees to grow along the shore line.
For some time he and his wife Joan became resident Queenslander's when they bought the former home of Hamilton Island founder Keith Williams.
As expected the palatial residence became the home for his crew during Race Week. The warm and friendly nature of Warren Johns supported by his ever loving wife Joan became known as the gentleman 'Yachtie' and deserved the career honour of winning an Australian Yachtsman Of The Year award among many other championship trophies including the Kenwood Cup in Hawaii.
However he always valued the opportunity to spend the time with his many Australian sailing mates and will be sadly missed while his weather worn deck shoes will be difficult to fill. Thankfully the legacy of Warren Johns will continue to sail on with Rod Jones and his AUDI A5 Heaven Can Wait sailing team having plans in place to be on the start line for the 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart Race.
Meanwhile the highly qualified crew will continue to refine their understanding of sailing Heaven Can Wait while her proud original owner will ride along in heavenly spirit. -- Ian Grant
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5. Formula-X - Marlow have redesigned the existing world class Formuline to add a textured finish that will grip in the ratchet systems.
6. Kiteline Race -The thinner diameter reduces wind resistance and ensures the line remains responsive even in the lightest winds while maintaining the cruicial 300kg break load.
7. Kiteline Freestyle - Adds extra strength and durability with a slightly larger diameter will add confidence for the rider when performing the highest power moves.
8. ProDrive - ProDrive is a torsional furling cable designed for top down furlers.
The MET Office Would Like To Hear From You
The Met Office is running an on-line survey until 3 December to better understand how the weather affects your sport and how it can improve its forecasts to better meet your needs and improve your safety.
They particularly want members of the public who undertake the following activities: angling (from a boat), kite surfing, water-skiing, surfing, power boating, scuba-diving, sailing, kayaking or rowing.
The Met Office will use this information to develop new content that improves safety, for example forecasting whether there is an increased risk of a rip current at a site under particular weather conditions.
Take part in the survey: www.metoffice.gov.uk/about-us/watersports-survey
From the RYA: www.rya.org.uk
For The Record
Record: Outright World and World "B" Division Sailing Speed Record
Comments: Current Outright Record: 2010. Kite Board. Rob Douglas USA. Luderitz, NAM. 55.65 kts.
Current "B" category record: 2012. Vestas SailRocket. Paul Larsen AUS. Walvis Bay, NAM. 54.08 kts
A further claim for a speed in excess of the above is currently being assessed
Dates Announced for Brooks Macdonald Warsash Spring Series 2013
The dates for the Brooks Macdonald Warsash Spring Championship, with racing on Saturday and Sunday, are 20th/21st and 27th/28th April 2013.
The event will follow the usual popular format with some innovations:
- New for 2013: All Black Group classes can enter the Spring Championship,
2013 sees a new title sponsor for the event. Nigel Colebrooke, Commodore, said: "We welcome Brooks Macdonald on board for the thirtieth anniversary of our premier early-season racing event. Brooks Macdonald has sponsored other sports locally and we are so pleased Warsash Sailing Club has been chosen for their first involvement with sailing in Hampshire."
ARC Cruising Boats Start
For the first time since the ARC began in 1986, the boats started within the port of Las Palmas, manoeuvring in an area just outside the marina before crossing a line formed by the harbour breakwaters.
Las Palmas Port is one of the busiest in Europe, and the Port Authority worked hard to ensure that the ARC boats could start safely without disrupting the commercial operation.
A brisk 15-20 knot north easterly wind sped the fleet clear of the city and they were soon heading south away from Gran Canaria. Most boats will continue to sail south until they are within the established tradewinds, when they will turn west towards Saint Lucia.
First of the 17 multihulls across the line at 1045 was the Simpson family's Catana 431 Intrepid Bear (GBR) with Harry (5), Milly (7) and Thea (9) onboard. The larger cruising boats started with the multihulls, and in this division Oyster 655 Sotto Vento (GBR) lead Oyster 82 Raven (GBR).
The largest ARC division, the cruising boats, started at 1100. There are 155 boats in this division, including family boats sailing with children. First boat to cross the line was Italian XP-44 Ariennta 4.2 (ITA), with Hanse 531 Savarna (NZL) and the Karlsson-Smythe family's Jeanneau Just Nuts! (IRL) following close behind.
A full list of ARC 2012 boats is available online at www.worldcruising.com/arc
All boats are fitted with Yellowbrick trackers, and can be followed online at www.worldcruising.com/arc/fleetviewer
Sydney Short Ocean Racing Championship
Winners were decided with one final race at Middle Harbour Yacht Club's Sydney Short Ocean Racing Championship today, when the foretold weather did not play ball, forcing Principal Race Officer, Denis Thompson, and his race crews to wait for the north-easterly wind to fill in.
Instead of the proposed 11.00am start on Sydney Harbour, the time ticked away till shortly after 11.30am, when Thompson, after keeping competitors informed, sent the yachts off by division and class, with the larger Division 1 boats starting first, until finally the PHS class got on its way. When the breeze dwindled later, Thompson was unable to get the planned Race 3 away.
Victorian Rob Hanna made the best of the situation, and like yesterday, was so far ahead of his contemporaries in the light airs. The breeze flicked between north-east to east-north-east and lightened as the race and day went by, Hanna's TP52, Shogun V, revelling in what it was provided to take the gun and the series.
Paul Clitheroe's Beneteau 45, Balance won Race 2 overall though, to claim second place overall for the series. Local boat, Bob Cox's DK46, Nine Dragons, was third overall.
Chris Heraghty and his Mumm 36 modified, Outlandish, won Race 2 in Division 2, today, but it was Cruising Yacht Club of Australia Commodore, Howard Piggott, who took out the series with a third place to also win the inaugural Beneteau F40 Championship with his Flying Cloud.
Queenslander, Robbo Robertson (Lunchtime Legend), finished the race second, for third overall in the series and second in the Beneteau Championship, while Philip Dash (Justadash) took third in the Beneteau Championship.
Division 3 was a hard fought affair and was won by Roger Hickman and his veteran Farr 43, Wild Rose. The 1993 Rolex Sydney Hobart winner taking second place to fellow CYCA entry, L'Altra Donna (Warren Miller) in Race 2, enough to give him the series, with Miller's Summit 35 second overall and Steve Hatch and his Sydney 36cr third overall for the series.
Of their efforts to win the SSORC with an older boat or 'the old girl', as Hickman calls her, he said: "We can't point as high as the newer boats, so we have to sail more defensively. It's been a while since we sailed a lot of regattas, and this was our first; we plan to go on tour again," he said. "This regatta provided us with the opportunity of brushing up on sailing around the cans again." -- Di Pearson
Full results: www.ssorc.mhyc.com.au
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