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Ainslie Takes Early Lead at America's Cup World Series Naples
Photo by Luna Rossa / Carlo Borlenghi. Click on image for photo gallery.

AC45 Naples Naples, Italy: A competitive fleet of nine AC45 catamarans skippered by some of the world's best sailors combined with unsettled wind conditions to produce an exciting opening day at the America's Cup World Series Naples.

Ben Ainslie's J.P. Morgan BAR crew hold the early lead in the series. They scored 21 points after placing 3-1 in the two fleet races and lead Dean Barker's Emirates Team New Zealand crew by 1 point. The Kiwis finished 1-4.

J.P. Morgan BAR also scored a come-from-behind win in its quarterfinal race of the match racing championship in testing conditions that kept all 45 of the sailors piqued trying to decipher the tricky wind conditions.

"It was one of those days when you want to survive because it would have been easy to pick up some bad results," said Ainslie, the four-time Olympic Gold medalist who had the British Ambassador to Italy, Christopher Prentice, aboard as a guest racer. "The wind was so shifty today coming over the headland. That was the biggest challenge."

Reports from the race course on the Bay of Naples indicated that the wind was shifting from south/southwest to nearly west, an arc of some 35 degrees, and ranged in strength from 8 to 12 knots.

In today's match racing action, newcomer HS Racing, led by co-skippers Roman Hagara and Hans-Peter Steinacher, won the qualifier match in a "walkover" when opponent China Team was disqualified for failing to start properly.

Two of four quarterfinal matches were also held today. Luna Rossa Piranha defeated Artemis Racing White (Charlie Ekberg) in one match while J.P. Morgan BAR defeated Energy Team (Yann Guichard) in another.

The quarterfinals will conclude tomorrow with HS Racing squaring off against Oracle Team USA (Tom Slingsby) and Emirates Team New Zealand racing Luna Rossa Swordfish (Francesco Bruni).

Provisional standings after 2 of 7 scheduled races:

1. J.P. Morgan BAR, Ben Ainslie, 21 points
2. Emirates Team New Zealand, Dean Barker, 20
3. Luna Rossa Piranha, Chris Draper, 18
4. Oracle Team USA, Tom Slingsby, 16
5. Energy Team, Yann Guichard, 14
6. Luna Rossa Swordfish, Francesco Bruni, 14
7. Artemis Racing White, Charlie Ekberg, 11
8. China Team, Mitch Booth, 7
9. HS Racing, R. Hagara/H.S. Steinacher, 7

Franco-German Victory In Normandy
Jorg Riechers and Pierre Brasseur, aboard the Class 40 "Mare", secured victory in the fourth edition of the Normandy Channel Race. From Germany and France's Picardy region, the duo crossed the finish line at 22 hours 57 minutes and 30 seconds UTC on Wednesday 17 April, in a time of three days, seven hours, 57 minutes and 30 seconds at an average speed of 8.08 knots. They were 56 minutes and 20 seconds ahead of "Made in Normandie", skippered by local sailors Nicolas Jossier from Granville and Alexandre Toulorge from Cherbourg.

"Campagne de France" skippered by Briton Miranda Merron and local Halvard Mabire, bagged the third step of the podium, just one minute and three seconds behind second place. "Geodis" skippered by Fabrice Amedeo and Armel Tripon, finished fourth followed by "Al Bucq" skippered by Briton Ned Collier-Wakefield and Brieuc Maisonneuve, who made a great comeback, "Red" skippered by Mathias Blumencron and Boris Herrmann and "Groupe Picoty" helmed by Jean-Christophe Caso and Aymeric Chappellier, "Momentum Ocean Racing" and "Phoenix Europe - Carac". The finishers arrived in quick succession into Ouistreham, testament to the growing uniformity of the Class 40 line-up.

The 2013 edition of the event, organised by Sirius Evenements, was played out in medium to strong winds. Blowing in from the south-west for the bulk of the race, it never really eased, save for a few hours after the start as the fleet negotiated the Saint Marcouf islands.

The overall standing can be viewed at from tomorrow's arrival of the last boat, skippered by the valiant amateur duo on "Obportus 3". -- translated by Kate Jennings

Career Opportunity at Henri Lloyd
Henri Lloyd Are you an ambitious, motivated and confident individual with a keen eye for retail?

If so we're looking for a new manager for our Lymington store!

Send your CV marked for the attention of Charlotte to by the 26th of April.

Egypt's Most Ancient Maritime Harbor In Suez Discovered
A French-Egyptian archaeological mission discovered the oldest commercial harbor from the fourth dynasty King Khufu (Cheops) at Wadi Al-Jarf area, 180 km south of Suez. On the Red Sea shore at Wadi Al-Jarf area along the Suez-Zaafarana road, a French-Egyptian archaeological mission from the French Institute for Archaeological Studies (IFAO) stumbled upon what it believed to be the most ancient harbor ever found in Egypt.

The harbor goes back to the time of the fourth dynasty King Khufu. The harbor is considered one of the most important commercial ports where trading trips to export copper and other minerals from Sinai were launched.

A collection of vessel anchors carved in stone was also discovered as well as different docks.

Minister of State for Antiquities Mohamed Ibrahim announced that a collection of 40 papyri, showing details of daily life of ancient Egyptians during the 27th year of King Khufu's reign, was also unearthed during excavation.

"These are the oldest papyri ever found in Egypt," asserted Ibrahim. He also stated that these papyri are very important because they reveal more information about the ancient Egyptians' daily life.

Handy Tool
Garmin Watch Garmin's new Quatix 'sailing watch' offers the tactical horsepower that race strategists of just a few years ago could only have dreamt about

A major new development in Garmin's portfolio is the recent acquisition of Nexus. Nexus is already well known for its dynamic series of racing instruments - a sector in which Garmin intends to diversify and expand. Nexus instruments presently range from the entry-level NX series for day sailors up to the highly developed racing products in the NXR range.

In terms of individual products, among Garmin's most exciting recent additions to its racing coverage is the new Quatix sailing watch - introduced at the Dusseldorf Boat Show. In a single, easily operated package Quatix provides comprehensive navigation and performance capabilities through the integration of Garmin's industry-leading GPS technology. In one small 'watch' Quatix includes tactical sailing features never before combined in such a useable, simple package.

By adding a Garmin GNT 10 unit, information can also be fed to the Quatix wirelessly from the boat's permanent performance and navigation system.

Full article in Seahorse:

Win Signed Photo of the 2012 Irish Olympic Sailing Team
To celebrate the release of the incredible video of Annalise Murphy sailing in the snow as part of the The Journey (see )we are giving away a framed photograph of the 2012 ISA Olympic Sailing Team signed by Annalise Murphy, Peter O'Leary, David Burrows, Ryan Seaton, Matt McGovern, Ger Owens, Scott Flanigan and James Espey.

To enter simply go to the ISA Olympic Facebook page and 'Like'

Thun Tankers Main Sponsor For Lysekil Women's Match
Every summer Lysekil Women's Match attracts the leading women match racing sailors in the world, coming to the beautiful and picturesque Swedish west coast. From now on, Thun Tankers is joining Preem as main sponsor for this successful event

Thun Tankers' parent company Erik Thun AB was founded in 1938 and has been in tanker shipping since 1952. This winter, when acquiring vessels previously jointly owned with Broström, Thun Tankers was founded. Introducing this new, and old, trademark to the market is now done with the sponsoring of Lysekil Women's Match as an important component

Lysekil Women's Match is with a 300 000 SEK (50 000 USD) prize purse the largest yearly event for women match racing sailors, concerning the mix of spectators, publicity and prize money

The world's leading women match racing sailors participate in the eighth issue of Lysekil Women's Match, August 5 - 10 2013, arranged by Sailnet Lysekil AB in cooperation with Lysekils SS Gullmar.

Lysekil Women's Match is the final stage of the Women's International Match Racing Series, with events in France, Korea, Denmark, USA and Sweden, and the overall Series prize purse of an additional 50 000 USD will be distributed in Lysekil. -- Joakim Hermansson

Weird Boats has noted what it deems the five oddest boats out there.

One that may be familiar to Eurobutt readers is the sailboat Plastiki

The 60-foot catamaran Plastiki was made out of 12,500 reclaimed plastic bottles. In March 2010, she set off from San Francisco with a six-person crew to survey the Eastern Garbage Patch, soon-to-be-flooded island nations, damaged and bleached coral reefs, and the acidifying ocean itself. David de Rothschild wrote a book on the crossing, Plasticki; Across the Pacific on Plastic to Save our Oceans is available from Amazon.

Other boats noted:

The guitar boat
The Hamster Wheel
The shoe boat
The jacuzzi boat (your humble narrator's favorite from the list)


Nice Loophole If You Can Get It
The EU Commission's decision to delay its decision on the legality of French proposals for VAT exemption on charter contracts, could play into the hands of charterers looking to spend their summer on the Côte d'Azur.

Thierry Voisin of the eponymous superyacht service provider believes a decision is unlikely before August. And until the Commission gives its ruling, Voisin says, charter contracts can still be entered into without the addition of VAT.

Voisin admits that a change in contractual obligations during the high season would be problematic, and he hopes that this decision is stalled until September. But every cloud has a silver lining, and for Voisin this manifests itself in the retention of current VAT-free charter contracts. "This way we get to carry on with the VAT exemption until mid-July, or maybe even September", he said. "It is a legal game of back and forth but, in the end, the service to the end client is unlikely to change."

Considering the tendency for charterers to test the market by booking last minute in recent years, it is hoped that this may force their hand and trigger a spate of early French bookings that would qualify for VAT exemption. -- William Mathieson in SuperYacht News

Crewsaver UK Laser Youth Series - Round 2
Hayling Island Sailing Club, UK: Sailed in a wide range of conditions, a strong SE'erly breeze on Saturday and light & shifty conditions on Sunday the Laser fleet youth sailors were well tested by Sunday evening.

In the Standard fleet Michael Beckett (Solva) is sailing very consistently at present and he counted five Top 10 positions on his way to his 2nd Crewsaver win. In the Radial fleet there are several youngsters who are starting to show real promise. Thomas Williams (Shotwick) was the best of the bunch this weekend, counting two 2nds & a 4th place in his score. Less than 10 pts behind was local sailor Anthony Parke just ahead of Alexander Jardine (also Shotwick).

The final Spring Qualifier will be held at Pwllheli at the beginning of May and this will mark the halfway stage in the Crewsaver Series. The second half will start in the Autumn after the Summer holidays.

Overall Results:
1. Standard Youth, Michael Beckett
1. Radial Youth, Thomas Williams
2. Radial Youth, Anthony Parke
3. Radial Youth, Alexander Jardine

Creditors Demand Investigation Into 'Sordid History' of Yacht Transport Company
Principal creditors, amongst the 100 or so claimants seeking over $7million dollars in refunds from Yacht Path under Chapter 11 bankruptcy, have filed a petition to a US Court to appoint a trustee to investigate "the sordid history of the Debtor."

The case is being dealt with the United States Bankruptcy Court Southern District of South Florida and follows tumultuous events this February, when alleged legal trouble left Yacht Path unable to access bank accounts and thus pay freight for yachts. Five shipments of yachts faced arrest on arrival and owners had to pay twice their passage fee to the shipper. The company then filed for bankruptcy on 20 March facing threats of involuntary bankruptcy from affected parties.

But the principal creditors petitioning - Dolphin Partners, PJ Pacific and others representing various yachts - say these problems were due to long standing, serious problems. -- Belinda Liversedge in Superyacht News

David Bond
The last surviving British gold medallist from the 1948 Olympic Games, who competed in a sailing event held in Torquay, has died.

David Bond, from Falmouth in Cornwall, won a gold medal in the Swallow class alongside Stewart Morris from Norfolk.

Until last summer's Olympics in London, David was the only living Brit to have won a gold medal in front of his home nation.

London 1948 was the only time the Swallow class was included as an Olympic event.

Britain did not win another gold medal in a sailing event until Mexico City 1968.

Today, Great Britain is the most successful nation in Olympic sailing history.

David died on March 23, just four days before his 91st birthday.

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The Last Word
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