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Emirates Team New Zealand Bests Luna Rossa Challenge
Photo by Luna Rossa / Studio Borlenghi / Butto. Click on image for photo gallery.

America's Cup On Saturday the familiar foes contested the first two-boat race of the 2013 Louis Vuitton Cup, the America's Cup Challenger Series, and the reigning champions from New Zealand came out on top.

Skipper Dean Barker and the Emirates Team New Zealand crew made today's race look effortless. With the wind blowing around 17 knots, Emirates Team New Zealand held up Luna Rossa in the pre-start and then sailed away to win by nearly five and a half minutes on the 15.47-nautical-mile course.

The Kiwis completed the course in 43 minutes, 52 seconds. They recorded a top speed of 42.33 knots (48 mph), compared to Luna Rossa's 39.95 knots (46 mph).

The pre-start ramped up the anticipation for the race. Emirates Team New Zealand tacked to leeward of Luna Rossa and luffed up its opponent. The two crews started late, but Barker had the enviable leeward position and was able to speed away at 41 knots while Luna Rossa was doing 39 knots.

"There aren't too many moves you can pull off in this type of start," said Ray Davies, Emirates Team New Zealand tactician. "It's a short time period, enough for one or two maneuvers. That's a standard move we'll see. If you opponent doesn't get out of that tack well, there's an option to tack to leeward and stop the race."

On the racecourse, the Kiwi crew was far superior to the Italian crew. Barker steadily increased his team's advantage at each mark rounding, especially on the upwind legs.

* Following the Jury ruling, which leaves uncertainty with respect to the event and Artemis Racing's position in the competition, the Regatta Director started discussions with the teams and the US Coast Guard. Artemis Racing is supportive of these efforts.

On Thursday, ETNZ offered a solution that would enable all teams to comply with the Safety Recommendations so not to put the US Coast Guard permit in jeopardy. Artemis Racing welcomed the ETNZ solution to support the event and Artemis Racing in its current challenge. Unfortunately, not all teams supported ETNZ's offer and the current state of the race for the teams remains in question.

Artemis Racing continues to progress towards racing. Today, we have completed the structural testing of our boat. Final assembly will take place next week with the goal of getting on the water by the end of next week. Our entire team has been working tirelessly for two months and we are all eager to race. We will keep supporting the America's Cup.

Transpac Fleet On Their Way
Final start on Saturday. Photo by Sharon Green, Click on image to enlarge.

Transpac It's been almost twenty-four hours now since the last wave of boats crossed the start line, so the entire fleet of 58 entries from eight countries are now on the race course of the 47th Transpac, with the next stop Honolulu. For some this has been a fast trip so far, and for others a mix of fast and slow, but at the moment everyone is moving well down the course, in three distinct groups defined by their start date.

The leading group are the slower Division 7 and 8 boats who started Monday and are approaching the halfway point in the race. The wind for them has shifted far enough east that some are already gybing to port to stay on the favored gybe to Hawaii. They are being led as always by the largest boat in that group, Bob Hayward's Seastream 650 Manatea. At 0900 PDT Manatea was sailing at 7 knots on a heading of 226°, with 1017 miles left to the finish.

In corrected time, however, Manatea is sitting in 5th place, with Matt Brooks' classic 1932 S&S yawl Dorade leading Division 8, and their classic rival, Sam & Willie Bell's Lapworth 50 Westward, over 8 hours behind in corrected time even though the two are within sight of each other only 6 miles apart.

In Division 7 there has been an intense match race between two entries from Japan – Hiroshi Kitada's X-41 KIHO and Yuichi Takahashi's First 40 ten quarter – where the two have not been separated by more than a few miles nearly the entire race. This has pushed the teams to lead 1-2 in corrected time over their four other rivals in this class.

Of the Thursday group with their light and fluky start to the race, Bob Pethick's team from Michigan have pushed their Rogers 46 Bretwalda 3 into a corrected time lead in Division 4, while Gordon Leon's Farr 40 Foil has done the same in Division 5 and Jack Taylor's Santa Cruz 50 Horizon is doing the same in Division 6.

Yesterday's starters had a much better launch off the coast, and aside from a brief tack to port to clear the last point of land at the West End of Catalina, this group is now reaching fast down the track. Some were holding high towards the rhumb line – like David Askew's Reichel/Pugh 74 Wizard, who is leading this group – while the canting keelers and some others have already veered slightly south in an effort to use the fresh 15-20 knot breeze before it may die out in 2 days according to some forecasts.

Of the three classes in this group, Syd Fischer's Elliott 100 Ragamuffin 100 is furthest out, although nearly even with Giovanni Soldini's Volvo 70 Maserati in their distance to Hawaii. In corrected time these two are both losing to the Division 1 leader Peligroso, a Kernan 70 owned by Lorenzo Berho.

Local Success For Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta
Photo by David Branigan, Click on image for photo gallery.

Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta Home grown success is being toasted in Dun Laoghaire tonight following the conclusion of Ireland's biggest sailing event, the Volvo Dun Laoghaire regatta on Dublin Bay.

In spite of an influx of over 120 visiting boats, key trophies are staying in the waterfront clubs after this afternoon's prizegiving at the Royal Irish Yacht Club brought the curtain down on the 2013 event.

The Royal St. George YC had success in seven classes, Royal Irish sailors won six, including IRC classes 1 and 3, and the National YC won four one design divisions. Howth picked up two wins in IRC non­spinnaker divisions.

Trophies were awarded in each of the 25 competing classes plus several premier awards.

The top overall prize, for the Volvo Trophy, went to the Class II IRC winner Checkmate XV, a 1985 vintage half­tonner that has been extensively refitted.

The Nigel Biggs skippered entry from the Royal St. George Yacht Club, sailed by a group of friends, won all five race in its 26-boat fleet.

In a successful season so far for this Rob Humphrey's design, Biggs now adds the Volvo crown to the national title taken last month in County Kerry.

The biennial regatta is being hailed an enormous success both afloat and ashore. A combined fleet of 393 boats raced over eight courses in a range of light to medium conditions since racing began last Thursday.

In the J109 class, John Maybury's Joker II from the Royal Irish Yacht Club won this morning's final race to overhaul Pat Kelly's Storm and win Volvo honours and the Irish title too by a single point. 

Another Royal Irish boat, Bon Exemple, the Xp33 skippered by Colin Byrne, was the winner of IRC one and also received the top IRC boat prize in the regatta. Second in IRC one was Scotland's Now or never 3 with Byrne's club mate Paul O'Higgin's Rockabill V third.

Full results of all classes on

Audi Melges 32 Sailing Series Torbole Edition
Photo by Max Ranchi, Click on image for photo gallery.

Audi Melges 32 Sailing Series Torbole Edition Torbole, Italy: A full order of congratulations are in place for Spain's Marc de Antonio aboard Bribon-Movistar. Never once over the course of three days and eight races did de Antonio, along with tactician Gustavo Martinez Doreste and crew members Victor Marino, Giorgio Tortarolo, Filippo La Mantia, Nicola Pilastro, Albero Viejo Puga, Javier Ibanez and Sofia Bertrand, let up on speed and the ability to be fastest around the track ensuring them the title of 2013 Audi Melges 32 Sailing Series Torbole edition Champions.

Roberto Tomasini Grinover's Robertissima 1 and Jason Carroll aboard Argo maintained their positions as well overnight to finish the event respectively in second and third. Edoardo Lupi aboard Torpyone and Vincenzo Onorato's Mascalzone Latino rounded out the top final five.

With Lake Garda's 'wind factory' in place, two additional, final races were completed on Sunday with Lupi coming on super strong to win both heats, naming them 'Boat of the Day'. The first race of the day saw the advancement of Keisuke Suzuki on Swing finishing second with Carroll in third. Onorato took second place honors in the final race of the day followed by IM32CA Vice President Richard Gorannson on Inga From Sweden III HH.

In the overall Series rankings, Lanfranco Cirillo's Fantastica remains at the top, however the points gap has been closed ever so slightly. Andrea Pozzi's Bombarda is seated in second after four events with Lupi now in third. View The Full 2013 Audi Melges 32 Sailing Series Rankings.

Next up - the grande final event of the season is the 2013 Melges 32 World Championship on 18-22 September in Porto Rotondo, Italy hosted by Yacht Club Porto Rotondo (YCPR) in coordination with Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS), BPSE B.Plan Sports & Events, Melges Europe and Melges USA.

Top five final results after 8 race:

1. Marc de Antonio/Gustavo Martinez Doreste, Bribon-Movistar, 29 points
2. Roberto Tomasini Grinover/Vasco Vascotto, Robertissima, 35
3. Jason Carroll/Cameron Appleton, Argo, 41
4. Edoardo Lupi/Pietro Sibello, Torpyone, 42
5. Vincenzo Onorato/Gabriele Benussi, Mascalzone Latino, 46

Seahorse August 2013
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine

Seahorse Magazine

Leading edge
Alon Finkelstein explains how his team at Farr Yacht Design set about improving both performance and value with foils for the VO65

Gravitating eastward
Rob Weiland is starting to look to the Adriatic

World news
Transatlantic history, the wider importance of Team New Zealand, Caribbean wrap, Oracle Racing’s third contender and US America’s Cup reflections. Dobbs Davis, Blue Robinson, Patrice Carpentier, Ivor Wilkins

ORC column
Good science - Alessandro Nazareth

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Tour Voile: Doing The Wind Dance
The racecourse remained glassy and all 12 teams came back to Lorient's submarine base after today's racing was cancelled. Tomorrow's offshore leg is in everybody's mind, as the fleet will sail from Lorient, Brittany, to St Gilles in Vendee for 84 miles and a scoring factor of 3.

It's going to be an early waking up call tomorrow morning leaving the dock at 4:30am and starting the race at 6am. 5 to 10 knots of northeast wind is forecast before an afternoon's shift to the west. It will probably be a long spinnaker ride on the direct route to St Gilles. The route is free of mark until Normoutier "to let the sailors the possibility to play with the sea breeze" explained race director Christophe Gaumont.

All competitors will do their best to score well tomorrow, for the last offshore leg of the Tour in the Atlantic Ocean. Groupama 34, Bretagne Credit Mutuel Elite, Sodebo, Courrier Dunkerque 3 and Team OmanSail are 81 points apart. TPM-Coych is fighting against Nantes St Nazaire E.Leclerc and Ville de Genève Carrefour Addictions. The four amateurs have their own battle with Normandie leading the ranking.

Overall provisionnal top five after 18 races

1. Groupama 34, Cammas Franck, 718 points - Blue Spinnaker
2. Bretagne Credit Mutuel Elite, Troussel Nicolas, 688
3. Sodebo, Coville Thomas, 671.8
4. Courrier Dunkerque 3, Souben Daniel, 670
5. Team Omansail, Pouligny Cedric, 637

Last Minute Entries Boost Solo Nationals
A few last minute entries on Saturday pushed the number of competitors for the Solo Nationals at Hayling Island SC to 112. One of the late entries was 2010, 2011 champion, Matt Howard, completing the recent champions back to 2008 now taking part. Measurement was in full swing Saturday in blazing sunshine, with a good sea-breeze blowing, hopefully conditions on Sunday will be similar for the first two races.

Racing will take place in Hayling Bay from Sunday 14 July to Friday 19 July with two races scheduled each day. Entry includes defending champion Andy Davis, the 2010, 2011 champion Matt Howard and the 2008, 2009 champion Charlie Cumbley. Plus defending Nations Trophy (2012 Worlds) winner Mike Sims and the eight time National Champion, Geoff Carveth. -- Gerald New

See the website for daily updates, reports and images.

New York Women's Invitational Match Race
The finals of the New York Women's Invitational ended with a 2 - 2 score between Anna Kjellberg of Sweden and Lucy Macgregor of Great Britain, when lack of wind caused the time limit to expire and the organizers at Oakcliff Sailing could not run the final "winner-take-it-all" race. As Kjellberg won the round-robins, she takes her first event title on the Women's International Match Racing Series.

The final day of the New York Women's Invitational, the penultimate event of the inaugural 2013 Women's International Match Racing Series, started with light winds but yet fairly stable conditions in the morning. As the wind dropped after two flights, the race committee decided to move the course and continue racing in more fluctuating conditions closer to shore.

The next and final event on the inaugural 2013 Women's International Match Racing Series is Lysekil Women's Match in Lysekil, Sweden, August 5 - 10. A WIMRS prize purse of 50 000 USD will be distributed among the top three WIMRS skippers after the Lysekil event.

Since Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen and Stephanie Roble will not be present in Lysekil, it will be Camilla Ulrikkeholm, Anna Kjellberg and of course the current WIMRS leader Lucy Macgregor battling off for that money.

Final results:

1. Anna Kjellberg, Karin Almquist, Vanja Lundberg, Marie Berg, Annie Wennergren, Annika Carlunger, SWE
2. Lucy Macgregor, Penny Clark, Kate Macgregor, Claire Lasko, Jody Sanders, Alana O'Reilly, GBR
3. Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen, Anna Holmdahl White/Wyz Mooney, Liz Baylis, Brittany Demetriou, Sonja Draben, Dawn Riley, DEN
4. Stephanie Roble, Jessica Eastwell, Maggie Shea, Martha Pitt, Ann Schwagerl, Kyra Goldsmith, USA
5. Caroline Sylvan, Megan Six, Anne Corvi, Sara Sigvardsdotter, My Karlsten, Theres Wolgast, SWE
6. Nicole Breault, Molly Carapiet, Dana Riley, Julie Servais, Karen Loutzenheiser, Julie Mitchell, USA
7. Claudia Pierce, Alessandra Angelini, Paige Cook, Marie Kent, Janelle Peat, Aimee Famularo, NZL
8. Madeline Gill, Farrah Hall, Chantal Hearst, Danielle Gallo, Sue Disanti, Laurel Gaudet, USA, 6

Saskia Wins British Classic Yacht Club Trophy
Photo by Guido Cantini / Click on image to enlarge.

ritish Classic Yacht Club Racing at Panerai British Classic Week 2013 came to a spectacular close in Cowes with yet another day of sun drenched sailing and a sixth and final race, sponsored by Sandeman Yacht Company, for the 44-strong fleet.

As the boats arrived in the race area the breeze died briefly, but then veered to the south-east and filled in at just under 10 knots. Once again it was a tricky Central Solent race with patchy and shifty winds, particularly up on the mainland shore.  With a strong ebb tide building, judging lay lines became critical and there were more than a few boats who found themselves forced to put in an extra tacks to squeeze around a mark.

Class One for the modern classics saw Brian Scowcroft's Phantom take her second race win of the series, beating Stephen Jones' Meteor by just 27 seconds on corrected time after nearly four hours of racing. Class One overall victory went to Meteor, whose crew paid tribute to both the boat and to Stephen, who had carried on racing despite painfully wrenching his knee during yesterday's race.

In Class Four Robert Veale's Danegeld claimed her third race win, beating Cereste, owned by Jonathan and Scilla Dyke, with Mark Whiteley's Zarik third.  In the overall class standings it was Cereste who was victorious with Danegeld second and Richard Wallrock's Beeleigh third.

Andy King's Gluckauf finally managed to snatch a race from Sam Laidlaw and Rob Gray's Clarionet in Class Three, beating them by a handsome margin of almost 9 minutes, and David Messum's Josephine took third.  For Clarionet, today's second place was a discard so they end the series counting an impressive five straight firsts. Gluckauf took the second step on the Class Three podium with Martin Thomas' Charm of Rhu completing the line up.

The Je Ne Sais Quoi prizes, which are awarded to the boat in each class which, in the opinion of their fellow competitors, has that "certain something", went to Cereste in Class 4, Gluckauf in Class 3, Stiren in Class 2, Flight of Ufford in Class 1 and Zoom in the Cruising Division with Saskia being named overall winner.

The Lallow Cup for the best presented new entrant was won by Iain Pickard's 37' Illingworth sloop Chamois.  The Brian Keelan Memorial Trophy for the highest placed gaffer went to Beeleigh and the Moonbeam Trophy, for the overall winner of the long inshore race was presented to Saskia.  Saskia also claimed the Universal 8 Cup and the International Metre Trophy, which are presented to the top performing 8 Metre and the most successful boat built to the Metre rules respectively.

MC38 Harbour Regatta
Click on image for photo gallery.

MC38 Six MC38s emerged through the mist and rain of Sydney over the last weekend in June competing in the MC38 Harbour Regatta. The less than favourable weather conditions did not break the spirits of the competitors and the performance of the MC38s did not disappoint in the light conditions and as always created some very close fleet racing. 

The breeze kept everyone guessing and saw the leader board constantly changing over the course of the weekend. Ross Hennessy's Ghost Rider took the day's first race, with Leslie Green's Ginger hot on their heels. John Bacon's Dark Star didn't have a very good start to the weekend after a DNF in the first race due to the time limit, but he turned things around quickly claiming their first win of the series in the second race.   

Sunday saw a brief but welcome appearance from the sun with the breeze slightly picking up; Menace came out in fighting form, however it was Chris Hancock's Vino that climbed its way up the leader board. Ghost Rider fought hard to retain its place at the top with Dark Star trailing close behind, however Ghost Rider held its own and claimed its first Class victory. 

The Cone of Silence sailed consistently well over the weekend with McConaghy MD Jono Morris at the helm.

With the Class enjoying another exciting event, everyone is very much looking forward to their own division at the 30th Anniversary Audi Hamilton Island Race Week.

Gazprom Swan European Regatta Begins In Cowes
The Gazprom Swan European Regatta is underway with measurement and registration taking place at the ClubSwan Regatta Village in Cowes Yacht Haven. The Swan fleet is extremely diverse for 2013, amateur crews are coupled with the elite Gazprom Swan 60 World Championship teams in pursuit of their first ever World Championship title while the seasoned Swan 45 crews prepare to contend for the prestigious Swan 45 Gold Cup.

British Swan 36 Sheevra entered in Class C presents a different crew dynamic with owner Jonathan Wallis choosing to race with his wife and four children. The younger generation of the family cover off most of the racing roles aboard with a relief helmsman, mast, navigator and bow girl allocated and additional university friends filling the final spots.

The brand new Swan 53 Kathea (GER) will be coming straight from her build at the Nautor's Swan Boat Technology Centre in Finland. This is an exciting entry into the ClubSwan fraternity for new owner, Heinrich Voelker.

The more weathered Swans have made particular efforts this year throughout winter refits to ensure shining hulls and decks with some splashing out on new sails. All Swans; old and new will be aiming for a cannon from the Royal Yacht Squadron declaring a win across West Cowes.

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