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Round The Island Yachts Converge On Cowes
The Moxley-designed Catamaran RA. Photo by Trevor Burrows. Click on image to enlarge.

WMRT Ray Moxley has just brought his newly built 40' revolutionary catamaran RA into Cowes from Plymouth where it was recently launched. Not only has Ray drawn every inch of this remarkable boat and overseen its construction, but he will also be celebrating his 90th birthday just three weeks after this, its maiden race on Saturday. The Race organisers at the Island Sailing Club are fairly sure that he is the oldest competitor in this year's Race, and possibly in the history of the event.

Ray, the Architect who designed London's Chelsea Harbour, has been working on catamaran designs for over fifty years. He has employed his architectural skills to produce a fast, comfortable boat with a striking modern interior. It is on deck however that it truly innovative. RA has two masts side by side (rather than one behind the other).

For the sailing buffs RA is a lateral schooner with wrap-around sails on carbon masts without shrouds or spreaders. She is a blue water cruiser with a displacement of about 8.5 tonnes. Length 12m, Beam 5.5m.

* Traditionally Folkboats have always done well in the Round the Island Race and this year two boats in particular will be looking to continue their outstanding success rates in the race. Stuart & Caroline Watson and Matthew Jones on board 'Crackerjack' are looking for their 5th successive win in the Nordic One-design Folkboat Class whilst in the IRC Division Edward Donald helming 'Madelaine' has never been outside the Top 10 overall in the past nine years. His score line includes winning the Gold Roman Bowl in 2007and four 2nd places in 2004, 2006, 2008 & 2010.

* Ski champion Emily Sarsfield is swapping the mountain snow for the ocean waves to take part in this year's Round the Island Race.

Eight times British champion Emily finished 17th in this year's Freestyle Skiing World Championships and is currently the only British Ski Cross athlete who meets the BOA selection criteria for the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Russia. In 2010 she achieved the best result for a British female skier, finishing 11th in the Ski Cross World Cup Finals in Italy and made history by being the first British female to win a Europa cup event.

Based in Shamrock Quay Marina, Southampton, SkiWeekends.com is supporting Emily in her mission to secure a place at the Winter Olympics in Sochi next spring by sponsoring her for the 2013/14 season. The company is also sponsoring the yacht previously named Edith (GBR6831T) and for this Race entered as SkiWeekends.com. The IRC-optimised Elan 333 enjoyed a triple whammy last year by winning the Solo Offshore Racing Clubs Solent series, the Royal Southampton YC Double Handed series and the Royal Lymington YC Thursday night series.

Ben Ainslie Racing

* The J.P.Morgan BAR shore crew has been putting the AC45 together at Green Marine ready for racing this Saturday 1st June. At right: Matt Cornwell, Andrew McLean, Andrew Mills, Sir Ben Ainslie, Mark Andrews. Click on image to enlarge.

The team will start at 0510 with the other multihull classes for the 50-mile race around the Isle of Wight on the south coast of the UK.

The team is watching the weather forecasts closely, this will be the first time the AC45 has ever competed in this event, conventionally sailed on courses close to the shore, sailing the AC45 around the Isle of Wight will not be easy. The America's Cup World Series events involve short races, where the team would only race for 20 - 30 minutes at a time. The boats are very physical, so the crew will be working intensely as they manage the weather, the close contact with the fleet and the tidal challenges this course is famous for.

This event will see a new line up for the J.P.Morgan BAR crew, a mainly British affair as Ainslie is joined by Andrew McLean (NZL) (Headsail Trimmer) and Matt Cornwell (Bowman), both have a wealth of AC45 sailing experience competing for Team Korea in the 2012 -13 America Cup World Series. The other two crew roles on board will be taken by Andrew Mills (Runner/Floater) and Mark Andrews (Wing Trimmer). Both sail as part of the British Sailing Team in the Finn Class and were training partners for Ainslie in the lead up to London 2012.

They join the team after recent success at the Delta Lloyd regatta, where Andrews won and Mills finished third.MacLean replaces Mark Buckeley who has broken some bones in his hand and will now coach the team.

The current course records stand at 3hrs 53mins 05secs for a monohull boat, set by Mike Slade on ICAP Leopard in 2008, and 3hrs 08mins 29secs for a multihull boat, set by Francis Joyon on IDEC in 2001. For any attempt on the race record conditions would need to be perfect for the team. The current forecast looks positive with 12 - 15 knot, north/north westerly conditions expected.

The J.P. Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Race takes place on Saturday 1st June.

www.roundtheisland.org.uk

Who's Going To Win The Solitaire Du Figaro?
That is the question everyone is asking, every successive year, on the eve of the race start. Undoubtedly the 44th Solitaire du Figaro - Eric Bompard cachemire boasts an exceptional line-up. Since 2009 there has never been such a number of potential winners among the 41 racing skippers.

"Usually one talks of 15 potential candidates for victory, but this year you might  well consider 20" says Michel Desjoyeaux when asked for a prediction. TBS's skipper is one of the past winners who will be on the starting line again this year. There are six of them in this very special category, and several with more than one win under their belt: Mich' Desj' (three victories), Armel Le Cleac'h (Banque Populaire) who won twice like Jeremie Beyou (Maître CoQ), veteran Gilles Le Baud (Carnac Thalasso & Spa) not to mention Nicolas Lunven (Generali, first in 2009) and 2012 winner Yann Elies (Groupe Queguiner-Leucemie Espoir). Except for Gilles Le Baud, 64 years, whose ambition is mainly to finish in style, all the others are included in the potential winners' file on the eve of the start.

Hidden in the shadow of the big stars, there is always a group of outsiders, ready to grab their chance to get into the spotlight. Most of them come from the younger generation, have already shown their potential in the Figaro Beneteau circuit and the Solitaire du Figaro - Eric Bompard cachemire like Anthony Marchand (Bretagne - Credit Mutuel Performance), Adrien Hardy (Agir Recouvrement), Jean-Pierre Nicol (Bernard Controls), Xavier Macaire (Skipper Herault) or Paul Meilhat (Skipper Macif 2011).

The sailors : 42 entries, 6 past winners, 6 non-French skippers, 7 newcomers and 1 female sailor

The race schedule:
May 24th: Boats arrive in Bordeaux (Gironde estuary)
May 25th to 31st: time runs on the river Gironde
June 1st: Prologue Bordeaux - Pauillac - Eric Bompard cachemire

Stage 1 - Bordeaux/Porto (Portugal): 536 miles
Start: June 2nd at 13:00 (start line in Pauillac)
ETA: June 5th

www.lasolitaire.com

Williams Storms To 8-0 In Hwaeseong City
David Gilmour lets the umpires know his thoughts on Ian Williams top mark incident. Photo by Subzero Images / AWMRT. Click on image to enlarge.

Korea Match Cup Gyeonggi-do, South Korea: Ian Williams is starting to look invincible after marching to an imposing lead on day two of the Korea Match Cup. Even when starting a penalty down against the qualifier David Gilmour, the reigning champion of the Alpari World Match Racing Tour still manage to bend the race to his iron will.

After the cold, foggy conditions of the previous day, the sun shone brightly over Jeongok Harbour and the wind was strong and steady for the most of the day. The only slight problem was the wind direction, which made the beat one-sided with the aim for the 12 teams being to win control of the right-hand side. This put a massive emphasis on getting good starts at the right-hand end of the line, and some were better than others. Along with Williams, Taylor Canfield read the conditions well and has won all his matches except against Williams and Gilmour. This puts the USone team in second overall and virtually assured of a quarter-final spot tomorrow. 

There are some big names staring elimination in the face unless they can up their game in the final flights of the round robin tomorrow.

Tomorrow's aim is to finish the Qualifying round, with the possibility of starting the early phases of the Quarter Finals.

Stage 2: Korea Match Cup - Qualifying Round After Flight 16 

Ian Williams (GBR) GAC Pindar 8-0
Taylor Canfield (ISV) USone 6-2
Mathieu Richard (FRA) GEFCO Match Racing Team 5-3
Keith Swinton (AUS) Black Swan Racing 5-3
David Gilmour (AUS) Team Gilmour 5-3
Pierre-Antoine Morvan (FRA) Vannes Agglo Sailing Team 4-4
Phil Robertson (NZL) WAKA Racing 4-4
Adam Minoprio (NZL) Team Alpari FX 4-4
Bjorn Hansen (SWE) eWork Sailing Team 4-4
Johnie Berntsson (SWE) Stena Sailing Team 3-5
Gunwoo Park (KOR) Busan Match Team 0-8
Kim Taejeong (KOR) Match Game 0-8

wmrt.com

Fredrik Loof Joins The Sail Racing Test Team
Sail Racing Sail Racing are proud to welcome Fredrik Loof, Olympic gold medalist at the London games in 2012, as the newest member of our Test Team. Fredrik's experience in different classes and physically demanding types of sailing will play a major role in the development of new designs, features and technical solutions for our garments and gear.

"It's a blast to work with Sail Racing," Fredrik exclaimed. "They already have a great technical knowledge of products, materials and details. And with my experience, I'm confident that I have a lot to offer in this new collaboration."

"My participation in six Olympics, the Volvo Ocean Race and other projects have given me a great deal of perspective on the demands for garments regarding their functionality, durability and fit," Fredrik continued. "My current involvement with the Loof Racing Team in the new speed sailing competition M32-Cup, represents a different form of sailing that's characterized by faster speeds, higher pulse rates and a greater demand for mobility. It will be very exciting to be involved in the development of garments for more speed sailing."

Henric Vikestam, CEO of Sail Racing agrees. "Obviously, we're very proud and excited to be working with Fredrik. We're in a phase where we must take the next step in the technological development of our products."

"Fredrik's knowledge and preferences on the garment's performance will form the basis of many of our future technical products," Henric elaborated. "We look forward to immediately start up the development process."

As a competitor in the M32-Cup during 2013, Fredrik and the Loof Racing Team will be participating in four Nordic events, starting with a spectacular city race in Olso, Norway on June 5. Events to follow include a race in Gothenburg, Sweden from June 12 through June 16, and then in Malmo, Sweden from August 21 to August 24. The M32-Cup will conclude its inaugural season in Stockholm, Sweden from September 19 through September 21.

sailracing.com

Round Texel Sailing Week
Race Manager Jeroen Romkema is looking forward to the 36th edition of the Round Texel and the Round Texel Sailing Week.

As part of the Round Texel Sailing Week, the Texel Dutch Open will be held from Wednesday 12 until Friday 14 June. In only 3 days 10 races will be held. Due to the use of the Texel Rating (1 category till 105, and one counting 105 and higher) the Texel Dutch Open will have 2 champions.

In 1984, the Texel Rating formula was first used for the Round Texel race. Before that year, yardstick numbers were used to estimate the expected performance of the various types of catamarans. Since these numbers were derived from existing race statistics, it was not possible to determine handicap numbers for new designs of catamarans. Therefore the Texel Race organization decided to start using the Texel Rating, which is, nowadays, the international standard for races where various types of catamarans compete together.

The Race Manager and his team have decided to alter the starting procedure for the Round Texel as well: "We have chosen to start under the Z-flag procedure. Which basically means there will be no automatic disqualification for an early start." 

The Z-flag procedure will allow all participants to race, establish an end time and a placement on the leaderboard. Cats that cross the starting line after the 1 minute signal, between the triangle of the start buoys and the first gate, will get a 20% score penalty instead of disqualification.

www.roundtexel.com

2k Triumph For Yacht Club Costa Smeralda
Rome, Italy: On the final day of racing at Anzio, Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) were to prove themselves the masters of the game and the challenging conditions. 

Racing started in the slightly sheltered conditions just off the beach although 2m breaking waves added just a taste of excitement to the very close engagements.

As predicted race 24 between the YCCS and the hosts Reale Circolo Canottiere Tevere Remo (Rome) was to be the most demanding. With the lead changing at least 4 times nothing was certain until the finish line. YCCS taking the honours to finish stage one with a 100% win record.

For the remaining teams a 'winner stays on' series gave Yacht Club Gaeta a chance to move up the ranking and provide close peer racing for all the teams. -- Bruce Hebbert

Winning team: Yacht Club Costa Smeralda
Second: Reale Circolo Canottiere Tevere Remo
Third: Serpentine (GBR)

www.2kteamracing.com

Marc Guillemot To Tackle The North Atlantic
Marc Guillemot is facing another big challenge as he is about to tackle the North Atlantic solo record between Ambrose Light and the Lizard. After setting off on the delivery trip from la Trinite-sur-Mer on Tuesday, the skipper of Safran will be on stand-by in New York from 8th June.

"After retiring so soon from the Vendee Globe, I felt like doing something major while sailing solo." Marc Guillemot knows that he would leave his mark, if he managed to improve on the solo North Atlantic record time for a 60-foot IMOCA. The record belonged to Bernard Stamm (Armor Lux) from 2002 onwards - with a reference time of 10 days, 11 hours and 56 minutes set during the first edition of Around Alone, the solo round the world race with stopovers. That record was shattered last July by Alex Thomson (Hugo Boss). 8 days, 22 hours and 8 minutes.

In order to achieve that, Marc will have to keep up a steady pace throughout the 2850 miles across the North Atlanticand deal as best he can with complicated weather systems. Helped by the router Jean-Yves Bernot, he will have to find the most favourable weather opportunity.

Before attempting this record, Safran is on her delivery trip.  "The conditions are going to be rough for the first few days," Marc Guillemot told us just before setting off from La Trinite on Tuesday 28th May. "So we'll be taking the southerly route, passing under the Azores high, rather than the northerly route, which is more direct, but also trickier. We are reducing the risks, as we are not in a race." This first Atlantic crossing to New York will nevertheless be very useful. Clement Duraffourg, an engineer, who fitted the new keel with sensors is on board to gather information. Loic Lingois, Alex Marmorat and Ludovic Aglaor complete the crew. The stand-by begins on 8th June and will finish on 10th July.

www.safran-sailingteam.com

SYRF Appoints New Officers
Effective June 1st, the Sailing Yacht Research Foundation (SYRF) will have a new Treasurer and a new Executive Director position filled to help guide the organization forward in its mission to support the science of sailing.

Scott Weisman from White Plains, NY will join the Board of Directors of SYRF as its new Treasurer, filling the position vacated by Peter Reichelsdorfer who retired from SYRF last month. Weisman is a Co-­‐Chairman of Etico Capital LP and Senior Managing Director of Olympus Securities, LLC, and has decades of inshore and offshore racing experience in the Northeast US, having had a succession of designs named Pterodactyl campaigned successfully throughout the region, and most recently also raced the Tripp 41 High Noon

SYRF has also created a new Executive Director position to help manage its operations and fundraising efforts of the foundation, which has 501(c)3 status to accept tax-­‐deductible donations. Bjorn Johnson from Newport, RI will fill this position, and brings with him a wealth of both sailing and organizational experience in offshore sailing. With a professional background in real estate project management, Johnson has applied these skills as the leader of several one design class fleets over the past decade, but most notably was also Chairman of the 2010 Newport-­‐Bermuda Race, one of the world's premier ocean races.

Johnson has also accepted the Executive Director position for the Offshore Racing Association (ORA), the owner of the HPR and ORR rating rule systems.

For more information on SYRF, and information on how to make a tax-­‐deductible donation, visit the website at www.sailyachtresearch.org

For a T2P-­‐produced video explaining the SYRF mission, visit youtu.be/jgsdhgvd8A8

Warning Over GPS Accuracy
Navigation experts are warning about the possibility of decreased GPS accuracy and possible outages over the next months as the sun enters the most active phase of an 11-year solar cycle.

Sunspots and solar flares increase ionising solar radiation, creating more free electrons in the ionosphere. Sudden variations in the density of the ionosphere can cause GPS signals to scintillate and produce delays in signal propagation. The effect is predicted to increase from this month and is likely to last until next year.

It can affect GPS accuracy and in severe conditions can even cause GPS units to fail to lock on to satellites. The effects are worse during the day than during the night. The most likely times affected are right after sunset and latitudes possibly worst affected are about the equator (and in polar cap regions).

Experts are warning of potential in errors of more than 10m. Differential GPS could also be affected, though it is considered 'generally more resilient'.

Of equal concern is the possibility of outages in GPS coverage. -- Elaine Bunting's blog:

www.yachtingworld.com

Featured Brokerage
Featured Brokerage Boat 1891 Clipperbowed Gaffcutter. EUR 37,000. Located in Stockholm area, Sweden.

In boatbuilder ownership for decades. Restored to 1889 plans. Her half modell was on exibit at the world fair in Chicago 1893 and won the gold medal for the best zero-frame lines. Rare 120 odd-years old handy sized gaff racer/cruiser. Highly recommended usable collectors item.

Brokerage through Baum & Koenig GmbH.: www.yachtworld.com/classic-yachts/

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

The Last Word
The goal is not to sail the boat, but rather to help the boat sail herself. -- John Rousmaniere

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