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J Boat Racing Starts The Show Tomorrow
Tomorrow will be a historic day at the St. Barths Bucket Regatta, which has been called, by some, "the most important super yacht regatta in the world." The event is starting a day early to give the J Class an extra race.

And what a race it will be, as five of the behemoth 130'+ (40 meter) sloops - Hanuman, Lionheart, Rainbow, Ranger and Velsheda -- will be sailing together for the first time ever in the Caribbean. As well, it will be the first time since the 1930s, considered the J Boats' Golden Era, so many have converged for a single racing event.

"We are feeling good about this regatta," said Rogier van Overveld, crew boss aboard Rainbow. "We sailed against four of the boats in the Solent (all but Hanuman) and we've been doing a lot of sailing since, with almost the same crew, which are all from the Netherlands."

Rainbow's co-helmsman Mark Neeleman is his country's five-time Olympian in Finn and Star class, and most of the crew sailed aboard Windrose of Amsterdam (Rainbow owner Chris Gongriep's previous yacht) here last year.

Hanuman is sure to give them a run for their money, however, as two-thirds of its crew are big names from America's Cup and/or Volvo Ocean Race arenas. And among those is what Captain Greg Sloat calls the "Newport mafia" headed by helmsman Ken Read. Read is best known for his Volvo Ocean Race accomplishments as skipper of the Puma Ocean Racing Team but also has 40 World, North American, and National Championship titles to his name.

Sloat revealed that the collective know-how onboard is being harnessed for a small-boat approach to sailing the one very big Hanuman. He called Hanuman one of the "Super Js," which were built for the America's Cup. "The ratings among us are very even, so determining a winner might come down to a single mistake," said Sloat, adding that adept boat handling is the foundation of the approach.

Results for the J Class, which plans to sail one windward-leeward race tomorrow, will be calculated using the J Class Association handicap (the J Class Rule), and the racing format will be traditional fleet, where all yachts start together on one line.

The remainder of the Bucket classes, which begin racing on Wednesday, March 28 and continue through Sunday, March 31 along with the J Boats, will sail under the International Super Yacht Rule (a formal packaging of what was originated by Bucket founders as the Bucket Rule) and enjoy a "pursuit"-style racing format, which gives them staggered starts in each of three classes.

Live tracking for the J Boat racing can be found at www.tractrac.com

Caribbean Insurers Ltd Island Invitational
Mathew Barker's 1930s classic yacht, The Blue Peter were first to arrive at Norman Island/ Photo by Leighton OConnor, www.leightonoconnor.com. Click on image for photo gallery.

Caribbean Insurers Ltd Island Invitational Day Two of the BVI Spring Regatta & Sailing Festival was blessed with ideal conditions for the Caribbean Insurers Island Invitational Race to Norman Island.

Bright sunshine and a gentle breeze provided sublime conditions for the pursuit race with faster boats chasing down earlier starters in a game of cat and mouse around the beautiful islands, south of Tortola.

In the Classic Class, the beautiful vintage sloop, The Blue Peter, skippered by Briton, Mathew Barker was the victor and took the honour of first boat to finish in Norman Island, a tremendous effort from a yacht that is over 80 years old.

The Blue Peter skipper, Mathew Barker has been renovating the boat for many years. "We crossed the Atlantic in Blue Peter taking part in a classic race from Cascais to Barbados and we plan to go to several Caribbean regattas, the next stop will be St.Barths, before we go onto Antigua."

The Racing Division was set a course around Peter Island to starboard and Pelican Island to port before finishing just off Norman Island. Other classes enjoyed a shorter course snaking between Pelican and Flannagan Island before the finish.

There was a dramatic finish in the Racing Class with two boats overlapped through the finish line. Pasquale Leone's First 36.7, Hammertime II took the gun by a whisker from Marcus Chollerton-Brown's First 44.7, EH01. -- Louay Habib

www.bvispringregatta.org

Laser Europa Cup - Switzerland
Lugano, Switzerland: The third Europa Cup of the season finished on Sunday 24 March in thick fog on Lake Lugano, Switzerland.

In a beautiful setting and light winds, Laser sailors from 13 nations competed in the Swiss leg of the 2013 Laser Europa Cup and Euromasters Series.

A total of five races were sailed with one discard. In the 4.7 fleet Tim Leuenberg (GER), on 16 points won, followed by Paolo Mavricic (CRO) on 23 points and Alexander Ebert (GER) on 26 points in third place. The first girl in the 4.7 fleet was Francesca Bergamo (ITA) who finished with 26 points in fourth place.

Laura Cosentino (ITA) reigned in the Laser Radial fleet ahead of Maximilian Kuester (ITA) and Jon Emmet (GBR).

In the Standard rig for the Masterseries, Martin Klawon (GER) won with Mauro Lentini (SUI) and Enrico Negri (ITA) completing the podium.

The Euromaster Radial title went to Jon Emmet (GBR) followed by Mauro Lentini (SUI) and Enrico Negri (ITA).

Top ten final results, standard rig:

1. Chris Russell, IRL
2. Cyrill Knecht, SUI
3. Dominykas Kneizys, LTU
4. Mantas Pekūnas, LTU
5. Giovanni Gallego , ITA
6. Marco Ponti, ITA
7. Andreas Kyburz, SUI
8. Martin Klawon, GER
9. Mauro Lentini, SUI
10. Marco Guzzetti, ITA

Full results: www.sailing.org/regattainfo.php

ISAF: www.sailing.org/news/34119.php

Marinepool Automatic Life Jackets - Test Winners Around The Globe
Marinepool Marinepool is widely regarded as one of the leading sailing clothing and maritime lifestyle brands and is the largest producer of life jackets for the leisure market in Europe.

Using only the best materials and state of the art production technologies, no detail is omitted to ensure every product is optimized before it reaches the market. More than 20 years of experience and design excellence, plus the invaluable input of the world class athletes proudly wearing Marinepool garments, guarantee the products are at the cutting edge of technology. Uncompromising, highly functional and extremely light weight; Tested and approved by many of the world's finest sailors.

Our 300N ISO Premium offshore automatic life jacket has come out on top as the best overall product on the market in a test of German magazine YACHT (issue 12/12) while the same and other lifejackets of our wide range have won recent tests in NED, FIN and AUS.

No wonder they are the choice of Oman Sail´s MOD70 trimaran and scores of other offshore racing crews.

Marinepool offers performance automatic life jackets for racing where weight is absolutely crucial. Our Aero automatic life jacket weighs only 600g, that is 500g (!) less than other life jackets claiming to be "lite". Why go for second best?

Go for the test winner and learn more about the Marinepool life jacket range on marinepool.comcentrica.it/buyersguide2013/#/138/ or

www.marinepool.com

New Marina Planned at Gateway to Antarctic
Owners of Chile's Oxxean marina are investing in a new marina at Puerto Williams, the southernmost city in the world, where yachts can be provisioned before expeditions to Antarctica.

A permit has been approved to build a 100m floating dock with construction expected to start in September after the harsh Antarctic winter.

Tomas Miranda, a Chile based yacht consultant, is advising the two brothers who are Oxxean's owner and investors of he project. Miranda explained why a superyacht mooring facility is so greatly needed at Puerto Williams:

"Normally, yachts will stop at Oxxean and they do all the provisioning and then they go to Puerto Williams and do another provision before Antarctica. But at the moment they have to be at anchor. There are logistical problems with that because of the weather conditions, so if you don't have good weather you have to up the anchor and move somewhere else."

The plan for the marina is part of a broader project to improve infrastructure at Puerto Williams. As well as a new hotel, there are plans to develop other facilities says Miranda, who recently advised on the installation of a new gas station, which stores up to 600 thousand litres of diesel. Outside of the yacht specific, this week plans were unveiled for the first scientific research centre in Cape Horn to be constructed at Puerto Williams. The Sub-Antarctic Biocultural Conservation Program initiated project will be a centre of research and a visitors centre, broadening the appeal and scope for research based visits in the region. -- Belinda Liversedge in Superyacht News:

www.superyachtnews.com

New Sailing Rally For 2014
SWAC is a very special and bespoke event that provides a unique opportunity for similar sized cruising yachts from all over the world to take part in a single complete circuit of the North Atlantic.

The main emphasis of SWAC is to offer an affordable rally for amateur sailors to cross the Atlantic, cruise the Caribbean and return across the Atlantic, all within one season.

It also provides a unique and rare opportunity to visit destinations that are slightly off the beaten track and are largely ignored by the more conventional and bigger rallies.

The letters SWAC stand for the 'Stokey Woodall Atlantic Circuit' an annual sailing rally in two parts, taking place in October from Europe and May in the USA.

Yachts of varying sizes will take part in the rally across the Atlantic, leaving from Madeira on Leg 1 in October 2014, sailing to Cape Verde and then on to Barbados. They will return to either the UK or Portugal, by way of the Azores the following summer.

Charleston, SC is the departure port for Leg 2 of the rally, which will also include new yachts that are starting out on the SWAC 2015 from the USA. The combined fleet will sail to the Azores following which; homebound yachts will head to the UK or Portugal. The outgoing American boats will have the luxury of 3 months free cruising in Europe before rejoining the rally again in Madeira prior to the westbound Atlantic crossing in October.

SWAC has been custom built to meet all the aspirations of a select group of sailors under the guidance of one of the world's most famous mariners Stokey Woodall, who has personally amassed more than 300,000 miles of sailing, including 30 Atlantic crossings and 90 passages to the Azores.

www.atlanticcircuit.com

San Fernando Race
At the pre-race skippers' briefing, Hong Kong Observatory offered much in the way of cloud, rain and squally thunderstorms for the start of the 19th San Fernando Race, however Race Officer Simon Boyde cheated the wind gods yet again and, with a band of rain threatening from the West, managed to find 6 knots of NE and an ebbing tide to send the 24 strong fleet off in front of Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club in Hong Kong's Victoria Harbour.

Keen to get back home to Subic Bay, TP52 Standard Insurance Centennial had a text book start, ahead of Smith 72 Antipodes. The rest of the fleet made its way sedately through the Harbour to Lei Yue Mun gap, where the TP52 squeezed through in 10kts without stalling, leaving the rest of the fleet to bide their time in a Junk Bay hole before logging on to the breeze again.

The smaller IRC boats also had to bear the frustration of sitting becalmed, before EFG Bank Mandrake and Red Kite II were able to recommence their quest for IRC glory. IRC Overall will be a tough prize to predict, with Zanzibar keen to replicate her Rolex China Sea Race 2012 success, and Red Kite II fired up to make it three SFR's in a row, however it's 'early days' and the race can often be decided by the diurnal breeze as the boats hit the land shadow of the Philippines.

By the time Standard Insurance Centennial was past Shek O, Antipodes and Peninsula Signal 8 had picked up the chase and all boats had been piped through Lei Yue Mun, with Diamond Queen, Wonderwall, Sea Monkey and Allegro guarding the rear.

THe race ends in San Fernando, Luzon Province and all the crews will be looking forward to the blue seas and skies at the end of the race. However, with no boat currently averaging over 5kts that end could be some days away.

rhkyc.org.hk

Sovereigns Cup - 26th - 29th June 2013- 'Gourmet Racing'!
Sovereigns Cup The Irish medieval historic fishing town of Kinsale, spectacularly nestled under the lee of the stunning Old Head of Kinsale provides the perfect setting for the bi-annual Sovereign's Cup regatta. The Covestone Asset Management Sovereign's Cup, is Ireland's premier regatta on the South coast in 2013. With over 100 entries anticipated, the Sovereign's Cup provides the perfect balance between a fabulous holiday ashore and competitive racing afloat.

Renowned for its warm welcome, Sovereign's Cup provides racing under IRC fleets as well as the Irish Performance handicapping system 'ECHO', on both windward leeward and round the cans courses. Renowned for its competitive yet fun ethos, Sovereign's Cup has seen entries ranging from TP 52'S to GK 24's, all of whom are extended the same hearty welcome.

Entries for this year's event are registering at an unprecedented level which is testament to the value for money and reputation of the event. Notable entries thus far include the Ker 40, 'Keromino', Corby 37, 'Impetuous', the J-109 'Storm', together with a plethora of 1720's and Quarter tonners competing for their European and Irish Championships respectively.

Taking place from 26th - 29th June 2013, The Covestone Asset Management Sovereign's Cup offering competitive IRC racing in the picturesque "Gourmet Capital of Ireland" provides the perfect regatta destination this year.

For more information or to register see www.sovereignscup.com or contact

A Hot and Sticky Process
The nights are hotting up at the Green Marine boatyard in chilly southern England as the very first One Design Volvo Ocean 65 is stuck together.

It's been a week since the arrival of the boat's main components - the first hull came in from Persico, Italy, on March 14, followed two days later by the first deck built by Multiplast in France - and the team at Green Marine are making dramatic progress.

The boatbuilders have been taping the existing frames into the boat using pre-pregnated carbon fibres and the five remaining bulkheads.

Every third night throughout the process the whole boat is heated up to 75 degrees Celsius for all the glues and resins to be set to the correct specifications.

Launch date for the boat is in June.

"We've been keeping a keen eye on the construction specifications of the hull and deck which were unusually built by someone else," adds Green Marine Construction Project Manager Connell Daino. "I'm very impressed with what I see."

www.volvooceanrace.com

MOD70: 2013 Season and 2014-2016 Horizon
The inaugural MOD70 racing season was deemed a great success proving the potential of the one-design MOD70 Class and the full value of this innovative concept in the sailing world through the boat performance, reliability, the tight races and exciting events. Over 850,000 visitors followed the competition in the race village of the "Krys Ocean Race" and "MOD70 European Tour".

In the absence of a title sponsor for 2013, MOD and teams have opted on competing in events that include different classes.

The MOD70 fleet program includes a European Tour in the "Route des Princes" next June and most likely the "Transat Jacques Vabre" race between Le Havre (France) and Itajai (Brazil) with scheduled start on the 3rd of November.

2014 - 2016 Horizon

It is important to note that the MOD70 fleet is growing with the launch of MOD70 nr.06 Virbac Paprec (skippered by Jean-Pierre Dick) and the arrival of an American Team Orion Racing, which purchased MOD70 nr.02 (ex-Veolia) with Cam Lewis, regarded as one of the best multihull sailors in the USA, part of the team.

With an international participation at the highest level composed of a minimum 7 teams, MOD's objective is now to actively work on the 2014-2016 circuit program, with notably the second edition of the "Krys Ocean Race" (from Brest to New York). The first edition, with a finish during the Tonnerres de Brest, proved a great success and the second edition is soon to be announced.

www.multionedesign.com/en/

Santander 2014 Test Event Notice Of Race Published
Santander, Spain: The Notice of Race for the Santander 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships Test event, Ciudad de Santander Trophy, has been released.

The Organising Authority is the Real Federacion Espanola de Vela (RFEV) in conjunction with the International Sailing Federation (ISAF).

Set to be held in the Bay of Santander from 9-15 September 2013 the Ciudad de Santander Trophy will welcome sailors across the ten Olympic events for the Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition.

Each ISAF Member National Authority (MNA) is entitled to one Priority Entry in each event with the event quota able to be increased to allow each MNA at least one entry. Additional entries will be accepted until the quotas have been filled.

Santander, Spain will host the fourth edition of the ISAF Worlds out of the Prince Felipe High Performance Sailing Centre (CEAR), a fully equipped facility that is home to the Spanish Olympic Sailing Team, and the Royal Yacht Club of Santander. Both venues feature excellent facilities for sailors, closeness to the city and excellent public access.

One of the main hallmarks of the city of Santander is its Bay, which is considered to be one of "the most beautiful bays in the world" and the most important on the Bay of Biscay.

Notice of Race (PDF): www.sailing.org/tools/documents/Santander

Kitesailing African Course Racing Championships
Day 2 at the 2013 African Course Racing Championships and the weather was not looking too promising early on in the day, with the turquoise waters of Soma Bay in Egypt distinctly mirror-like in appearance.  However, a few hours of patience waiting ashore, were rewarded with breeze kicking into between 8-12 knots.

For the men, racing in two fleets reseeded from day 1, today was all about qualifying through to the gold fleet for the final series. World number 1 on the Course Racing World Rankings, German's Florian Gruber, left nothing to chance and took two race wins to move up into second on the leaderboard, just behind series leader Riccardo Leccese. Reigning World Champion, Jonny Heineken had difficulties trying to catch Gruber, but a 4th place in race 6 was enough for him to stay in the top three of the leaderboard, just 2 points behind Gruber.

Tomorrow sees the men split into gold and silver fleets for the final races, with the top 30 kiters now racing against each other in the same fleet - so there is guaranteed to be added pressure and excitement on the race track.

In the women's first race 5 of the day it was the young Russian Elena Kalinina who led, and achieved a major margin over the rest of the pack. Her light weight certainly played to her advantage, and she went onto score another win in race 6 and end the day where she started, in second overall. Series leader going into race day 2, Steph Bridge from Great Britain posted a second in race 5, to help her stay in the top spot on the leaderboard.

Top three:

Men
1. Riccardo Andrea Leccese (ITA)
2. Florian Gruber (GER)
3. Johnny Heineken (USA)

Men's Full Results

Women
1. Steph Bridge (GBR)
2. Elena Kalinina (RUS)
3. Erika Heineken (USA)

Women's Full Results

Featured Brokerage
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Brokerage through Gulf Charters Thailand: www.yachtworld.com/gulfchartersthailand/

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

The Last Word
To all the revolutionaries fighting to throw off the yoke of tyranny around the world: look at British democracy. Is that what you want? -- Andy Zaltzman

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