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Regatta Director Sets To Work On Fact-Finding Mission
Tasked with running a review into the circumstances surrounding the capsize of the Artemis Racing AC72 on Thursday, Regatta Director Iain Murray says consultation with stakeholders is already underway.
On Tuesday, Murray has scheduled a formal meeting when all four teams competing in the Summer of Racing - ORACLE TEAM USA, Artemis Racing (SWE), Emirates Team New Zealand and Luna Rossa Challenge (ITA) - will be in San Francisco.
"The meeting with the teams is a crucial next step," Murray said. "We need to establish an open flow of information to ensure this review meets its goals of fact-finding and putting us in a position to recommend changes, if necessary."
One aspect of the review will involve study of all data that was captured at the time of the incident.
"Once we have the information, the basic facts, all the data, then we will be able to re-build the entire chain of events and start to assess why this incident resulted in a tragic loss of life," he said.
Statement from Iain Percy OBE:
Iain Percy, long-term friend and Artemis Racing teammate with whom Andrew Simpson won his Olympic Star gold and silver medals, has commented:
"Yesterday I lost my closest friend of over twenty five years, the friendliest and kindest man I have ever met. I cannot believe he is no longer with us.
"Now all our thoughts should be with his wife and two amazing boys who meant the world to him. Andrew has more friends than anyone and we will continue to support his family with all our hearts.
Statement from Artemis Racing:
Artemis Racing is in the process of conducting a thorough review and analysis of this week's accident. As a part of this review, Artemis Racing is sharing and exchanging data and information with concurrent work being performed by America's Cup and the San Francisco Police Department. Until this process is complete, any conclusions being made about the events that led to the boat's capsizing and its tragic outcome are pure speculation. Out of respect for Bart's memory and his family, we ask that the broader sailing community and others reserve judgment until all the facts are known, and not persist in unnecessary rumor. We again thank everyone for their continued support and thoughts during this difficult time.
UK Mini Fastnet
The past few days in Plymouth have been busy ones. Having finished the UK Solent 6.50 race on Wednesday morning, Nikki and I spent the afternoon in a bit of daze, just wondering around eventually getting some lunch to eat and a good shower. The following day we got on with the boat work, as always, there was a lot to do. The rig needed a re-tune, the baby stay had to be put back in (as it had fallen out during the last race!), things needed cleaning, new food needed to be bought and packed, kit cleaned and dried, batteries charged (boat and people's) and the navigation and weather studied for the next race, the UK Mini Fastnet starting today. (Sunday 12th May)
The race is 561 miles double-handed, with a change of course due to the weather to avoid a nasty, upwind slog. We are now to be going around the course to the Fastnet Rock in reverse. The course is as follows, to include a short in port race immediately after the start:
Plymouth Breakwater (to port)
Eddystone Rock light (to starboard)
Conninbeg Light Vessel (to port)
Fastnet Rock (to port)
Bishop rock (to port)
RWYC finish line (Plymouth)
It will be an interesting race with Traffic Separation Schemes. These are basically traffic lanes, which are used to regulate shipping in busy, confined waterways and around capes. Between the traffic lanes and the coast there are 'inshore traffic zones', where local traffic, fishing and small craft can go.
On top of the traffic we have the tide to think about. There are lots of shoreline currents and at the Scilly Isles continuously clocking tidal streams. To get to Conninberg Light Vessel and the Fastnet Rock, we are going to have to cross the Irish sea; a convergent zone of the Atlantic Ocean, the Celtic Sea and the English Channel and the Scottish Sea. The Irish sea is renowned for rough weather and treacherous conditions near the rock. This is because low pressure systems spin up over Northern Ireland and Iceland, where they build and typically move off to the east or south east.
For the start we have 20 knots from the SW forecast, which looks set to build to 25 knots by the evening. As we get into Monday the wind is set to clock more towards the west / north west, at about 20 knots. Tuesday we have a big low pressure coming through bringing a minimum of 25 knots from the south south west, but hopefully we won't see much more than this...or it will be serious Buckaroo on the Mini! -- Lizzy Foreman
Double Dutch Win
Piet Vroon's Ker 46, Tonnerre de Breskens III. Click on image to enlarge.
Piet Vroon's Dutch Ker 46, Tonnerre de Breskens 3, won the North Sea Race with the best score racing under the IRC rating Rule. Gusting over 25 knots with rainsqualls, the early part of the race was not a comfortable one but more settled weather in the latter part of the race with glimpse of sunshine coming through the cloud cover was welcomed by the 75 yachts that entered the race.
Harm Prins' Dutch Volvo 60, Pleomax, took line honours and IRC Zero but corrected out to third overall. The biggest threat to Tonnerre de Breskens came from Gery Trentesaux's MC34 Patton, Courrier Vintage, which was the victor in IRC Two. However the French flier was nearly half an hour behind Tonnerre de Breskens after time correction, Harmen J de Graaf's Ker 40, Baraka GP, with Volvo Ocean Race veteran Bouwe Bekking on board, was also a threat but could not match Tonnerre. Much to the delight of the Dutch yacht's skipper, Piet Vroon, Tonnerre de Breskens 3 was victorious in Scheveningen.
The North Sea Race has a points factor of 1.2 which makes the win for Tonnerre especially significant in their bid to retake the RORC Season's Points Championship in 2013.
Other Class winners under IRC were Iain Kirkpatrick's British team, racing X 37 Fatjax. The team from Haven Ports Yacht Club corrected out to win IRC Three. In IRC Four Vincent Willemart's well-campaigned Belgian JPK 10.10, Wasabi, took the class. Whilst in the Two-Handed class the Dutch team of Chris Revelman and Pascal Bakker retained the class title racing J/122 Junique.
Sixteen yachts were racing under ORC on the long course. Three Dutch yachts had a close battle for the overall win. Chris de Jongh's Landmark 43, Skarp, led from start to finish and with just 30 miles to go was leading after time correction. However, just after dawn on the beat to finish, Leon Westhoeve's BH41, Soulmate, took up the running and on corrected time beat Skarp by 18 minutes. However the overall win was not decided. Over an hour later, Frans Winterswijk's Trintella 53, Antares sailed by Nicole Eggink, crossed the line to win under ORC overall. -- Louay Habib
It was a wild night in the Gulf Stream last night as we experienced high winds, lightning, squalls with heavy rain and generally trying conditions. Our strategy was to get out to the Gulf Stream quickly and take the longest ride possible to Cape Hatteras, which is about 270miles from Charleston. However, when we arrived at the waypoint location where we expected the Gulf Stream to be, the favorable current was not there, so we had to go quite a bit further east to find the favorable northerly flow. The wind was out of the southwest, giving us a favorable downwind angle, and we were smoking along at between 13 and 18 knots. However, in the wee hours of the morning, a major squall hit us and we had to take down our A6 heavy air fractional kite in about 30 knots of wind, which was difficult. We then were hit by another squall packing driving rain and gusts up to 40 knots so we had to run off under full main and solent jib to the east.
When we finally got through the squalls and tacked back towards Hatteras, the wind shifted from southwest to west earlier than the GRIB weather files had predicted, and it became evident we had gone too far east, as the morning position reports showed us behind the boats who had stayed further west. So, it looks like we have a bit of catching up to do... but there is plenty of runway left... so we are drying out and licking our wounds from last night and intend to get back in the hunt shortly.
Happy Mother's Day to all mothers out there and particularly my mom Katrina and my wife Kim- and also happy birthday to Kim, who is turning 29 again! -- Joe Harris
SEAHORSE JUNE 2013
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine
50 shades of spray
Guillaume Verdier puts a strong case for the Multi50 class to Jocelyn Bleriot
A rare breed - Part I
Designer Mark Mills has been busy, below the radar but busy. And a new maxi racer is the result
Nathan Outteridge is finding that the America's Cup is a very different proposition from his previous Olympic and skiff racing experience
Commodore's letter Mike Greville
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Bermuda Race Announces New Division Assignment Method
Decision is one of five boats in the 2012 Newport Bermuda Race affected by a new rule that assigns very high performance boats to the Gibbs Hill Division, leaving more traditional boats in the St. David's Lighthouse Division. Photo by Daniel Forster / PPL. Click on image to enlarge.
Newport Rhode Island, USA: The Bermuda Race Organizing Committee has introduced a performance screen for the 2014 Newport Bermuda Race. The purpose is to identify modern lightweight, high-performance boats with large sail plans for assignment to the Gibbs Hill Lighthouse Division, and more traditional boats for assignment to the St. David's Lighthouse Division.
"In the past, the division break was based on the nature of the crew, said Race Chairman Fred Deichmann. "Boats with professional helmsmen must sail in Gibbs Hill, and boats with amateur helmsmen may sail in either St. David's or Gibbs Hill. That's still the rule, but now that amateur crews are racing very high-performance boats, design characteristics will be taken into account so that like boats compete for the same trophies.
The performance screen is calculated by dividing the boat's Sail Area/Displacement Ratio by her Displacement/Length Ratio, using data from the ORR certificate that include both upwind and downwind sail areas. Boats from the 2012 Newport Bermuda Race fleet with low performance screens, approximately 0.10, include Swans, Cal 40s, and the McCurdy & Rhodes designs Carina and Selkie. The highest screen for the 2012 fleet, 2.33, is that of the Reichel/Pugh 90 Rambler.
Under the new performance screen rule, boats with screen values over 0.72 will be assigned to the Gibbs Hill Division and those with values under 0.48 to the St. David's Division. Boats with screens in the middle, between 0.48 and 0.72, may choose which division to enter with the proviso that those choosing St. David's abide by the restrictions on professionals for that division.
Had the performance screen been applied in 2012, five boats that sailed in the St. David's Division would have been assigned to Gibbs Hill, including TransPac 52s, the Reichel/Pugh 65 Kodiak, and Decision, a Carkeek HP 40. In addition, five boats that sailed in Gibbs Hill would have sailed in St. David's, including three Swans, a J120, and a J130. Three boats that fell into the middle area could opt for either division: Wazimo, Bombardino, and Snow Lion.
Performance screens will be printed on 2014 ORR certificates. The performance screens for the 2012 fleet will be posted on the Newport Bermuda Race website, www.BermudaRace.com -- John Rousemaniere
The Solo Concarneau
The Solo Concarneau concluded Wednesday 8th May for the 20 boats still racing. It was an interesting race, as it reflected more about what a leg of the Solitaire du Figaro might be about.
Thirty boats started the 340-mile Solo Concarneau race on Monday 6th May. Covering almost the full length of the west coast of France the fleet left Concarneau and the Bay of La Foret mid-afternoon on Monday to beat upwind for a short seven mile kite reach to the finish line at sunset right in front of the harbor entrance of Concarneau.
The start was spectacular with 30 boats lined up on a relatively short line at the top of the Bay of La Foret mid-afternoon on a sunny day. Eight knots of wind a three mile beat to the Linuen cardinal buoy before a reach to the Glenan Islands saw the left hand side of the course pay with Morgan Lagraviere just edging Jeremie Beyou out of first place at the mark. Also in the hunt were Ed Hill, Henry Bomby and David Kenefick, all having started at the leeward end of the line.
The leg to the corner of Pen March turned out to be the race maker. The first part of the fleet tacked shortly after passing the Chausee onto starboard tack almost laying the Pen March point. Many of the following bunch, some way back, chose to stay further offshore to the west. This proved to be the winning choice as the boats further inshore ran out of wind and were unable to make their way back offshore. Regrettably several of the boats stuck inshore decided to retire from the race due to the distance had they lost.
The race was won and lost there in the Chausee de Sein and the rest of the course was sailed with much less to do on the tactical front and all to do on being fast, which meant pacing the skipper, sleeping at the right time and staying lucid.
The following legs were for the most part a reach, with headsails, spinnakers blossoming from time to time, but not for long. The winds never went above 25 knots and this only for a short period as the fleet rounded Ile d'Yeu at the southern extremity of the course. The last part of the course, following the 100 mile beat to the Glenan Islands, saw a short seven mile kite reach to the finish line at sunset right in front of the harbor entrance of Concarneau. -- Marcus Hutchinson
Top ten Solo Concarneau fleet and Artemis Academy results
Position / Skipper / Boat name
1. Paul Meilhat / Skipper Macif 2011
2. Nicolas Lunven / Generalli
3. Armel Le Cleach's / Banque Populaire
4. Yann Elies / Groupe Queguiner Leucemie Espoir
5. Julien Villion / Seixo Habitat
6. Thomas Ruyant / Destination Dunkerque
7. Xavier Macaire / Skipper L'Herault
8. Michel Desjoyeaux / TBS
9. Henry Bomby / Christine
10. Nicolas Jossier / In Extenso Experts Comptables
14. Nick Cherry / Artemis 23
15. David Kenefick / Full Irish / 45
16. Sam Goodchild / Vasco De Gama
17. Jack Bouttell / Artemis 77
20. Ed Hill / Artemis 37
Solo Concarneau Rookie Results
Position / Skipper / Boat Name
1. Claire Pruvot / Port De Caen-Ouistreham
2. David Kenefick / Full Irish
3. Jack Bouttell / Artemis 77
4. Benoît Hochard / IB - Marketing
5. Joan Ahrweiller / Region Basse Normandie
6. Ed Hill / Artemis 37
Francis Joyon and IDEC Set to Arrive Atdennis Conner's North Cove
One of the greatest single-handed sailors in the world, Francis Joyon, is expected to arrive at Dennis Conner's North Cove today withhis extreme trimaran "IDEC."
Joyon will be berthed in the marina for a week or longer as he waits for a weather window to challenge the Single-Handed Trans-Atlantic Record.
IDEC is 97 ft in length and one of the fastest ocean-going trimarans in the world.In 2008, Joyon and IDEC set a new Single-Handed Round the World Record of 57 days, 13 hours and 34 minutes, beating the previous record by 14 days.
Joyon was last at North Cove in 2005 when he arrived to attempt the Single-Handed Trans-Atlantic Record. He succeeded in that attempt, smashing the previous record but also losing his boat after crossing the finish line. His feat was so inspirational for local sailors that theyestablished the "Atlantic Cup" as a symbol of the Single-Handed Trans-Atlantic Record.
If you are around North Cove this week, be sure to come down and see this incredible racing machine. She is worth the trip andwill fascinate and delight you. And if you happen to see the greatest single-handed sailor in the world on board working, be sure to wave and say "Welcome to New York City again!" -- Michael Fortenbaugh
Annalise Wins Gold at Italian Olympic Week 2013 in Lake Garda
Annalise Murphy won Gold today at the Italian Olympic Week 2013 on Lake Garda. She was sailed down the fleet on the first beat but caught the leaders on the first run and led the race from there in steady conditions.
The 23 year old from Rathfarnham Ireland went in to the medal race as favourite, four points ahead of the leaderboard despite very mixed conditions yesterday which saw her finishing the qualifying rounds with a 29th and 7th having won 6 of the previous nine races.
Italian Olympic Week is the first regatta in the Eurosaf series. In total five regattas will be sailed over the summer months with the next regatta, Delta Lloyd starting in just eight days in the Netherlands on 21 May, followed by Sail for Gold in Weymouth and Kieler Woche in June and finally Semaine Olympique Francaise in la Rochelle in the autumn.
A new format for the medal race was trialed this week at Italian Olympic Week whereby the fleet is divided in to Gold and Silver after two days with the top six boats in the Gold fleet progressing to the Medal Race on the final day. This new format will be officially adopted for Rio 2016. -- Rachel Solon
1. Annalise Murphy, IRL, 2 points
2. Tuula Tekkanen, FIN, 5
3. Tina Mihelic, CRO, 5
4. Cagla Donertas, TUR, 10
5. Heidi Tenkanen, FIN, 10
6. Tatiana Drozdovskaya, BLR, 10
Irish Sailing Association: www.sailing.ie
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