Brought to you by Europe, Scuttlebutt Europe is a digest of sailing news and opinions, regatta results, new boat and gear information and letters from sailors -- with a European emphasis. Contributions welcome, send to

NOTE TO MY READERS: Eurobutt will take a short hiatus starting Friday. Your humble narrator will be travelling, visiting family and friends, and taking a bit of vacation time. Scuttlebutt Europe will not have a Friday issue this week, nor likely to have any issues next week. Normal schedule to resume for the Monday 26 August issue.

Maxi-Monohull Match Races Play Out
The biggest monohulls have spent the last days travelling two by two around the Rolex Fastnet Race course.

Between the pair of 100ft long Maxis - Esimit Europa 2 and Mike Slade's ICAP Leopard - it was the more nimble European maxi that led around the course to claim monohull line honours, finishing at 02:17:49 BST, with an elapsed time of 2 days 12 hours 27 minutes and 49 seconds.

Weighing in at a svelte 27 tonnes, compared to ICAP Leopard's 50, Esimit Europa 2 was the pre-race favourite for monohull line honours win and, after being forced to retire from the 2007 Rolex Fastnet Race in her previous incarnation as Neville Crichton's Alfa Romeo, this time she didn't disappoint. According to skipper, Jochen Schumann, the Esimit Europa 2 crew was concerned sailing down the Channel, because the moderate to strong upwind conditions favoured ICAP Leopard. In fact the closest ICAP Leopard got to them was around a mile.

The race was relatively simple in terms of crew work - there was only one jib change outbound to the Rock on board Esimit Europa 2, and downwind on the way back the conditions never exceeded 12 knots. But after all the hard work around the course, the outcome was only decided in the last moments when, like so many night time arrivals, Esimit Europa 2, was becalmed on the approach to the finish, as the boats behind approached, bringing the wind in with them.

Much to the chagrin of the ICAP Leopard crew, they were once again beaten by the Ian Walker-skippered team on the Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing VO70, which pipped them to the post crossing the line at 07:25:03, just four and a half minutes ahead of them.

The match race between the two Judel Vrolijk 72 Mini Maxis took a dramatic turn further back up the course. American Hap Fauth's newer and more powerful Bella Mente had led and extended over Niklas Zennstrom's 2009 and 2011 overall Rolex Fastnet Race winner, Ran 2, on the way to the Fastnet Rock.

After looking to be in good shape, Bella Mente suffered late yesterday afternoon when they fell into a patch of light wind short of the Bishop Rock.

While Ran 2 succeeded in beating Bella Mente under IRC, she has been knocked into second place in IRC Zero by Johnny Vincent's TP52, Pace. Overall she holds third place under IRC and sadly is no longer in with a chance of entering the history books by securing her third consecutive overall win in the Rolex Fastnet Race.

With the smaller boats returning from the Fastnet Rock in better conditions, they are becoming increasingly favoured for the overall win of the Rolex Fastnet Race under IRC. Andrew Pearce's Ker 40, Magnum 3, was ahead first thing this morning, but has since been overtaken by Inis Mor, the Ker 39 of Frenchman Laurent Gouy. It could be at least another 48 hours before a winner of the Rolex Fastnet Race 2013 is finally decided.

Fastnet Race Village Open
Plymouth Yacht Haven and the Rolex Fastnet Race Village is all set to host the public and welcome a fleet of boats and crews.

As the wind picks up offshore for the 2013 Rolex Fastnet Race fleet, the Race Village in the Plymouth Yacht Haven at Mount Batten is bracing itself for the arrival of thousands of sailors from all over the world.

Members of the public are warmly invited to come down to the free-to-enter Race Village to join in the celebrations, watch live TV coverage on the big screen and hear regular reports and interviews with the sailors on Fastnet Radio broadcasting on 87.9fm. Fastnet Radio will also be available on line at:

Race Village at Plymouth Yacht Haven:
Plymouth Yacht Haven, Shaw Way, Mount Batten, Plymouth, Devon PL9 9XH

Magic Marine Melges 24 European Championship
Medemblik, Netherlands: Melges 24 teams from across Europe are gathering at the International Sailing Centre Medemblik this week in preparation for the Magic Marine Melges 24 European Championship 2013. Registration opens on Thursday and 72 teams are expected to compete in an extremely closely fought competition for the right to claim the title of Melges 24 European Champion.

Without doubt one of the most engaging challenges of the Magic Marine Melges 24 European Championship will be the fight for the Corinthian title. 42 teams, more than half of the total entries, will be racing in the all amateur division and it is also important is to underline that the entry list includes 13 nations.

Now that Peder Jahre's Storm Capital Sail Racing has opted to sail only in the open division after a great series of Corinthian successes, the best know Corinthian is Lenny. Owned by two-time Olympic medalist Tonu Toniste (silver in Seoul 1988 and bronze in Barcelona 1992 in the 470 class), this Estonian crew has achieved a good number of brilliant results. It won the Worlds in Hyeres 2006 and the Europeans in Neaustadt 2007 and Aarhus 2011.

They are the reigning champions, but they will have to guard against attack from their fellow countrymen aboard Rock City, owned by Tiit Vihul, another long-time owner in the International Melges 24 Class Association.

Another interesting crew could be Marrakech Express. Representing Fraglia Vela Riva, this Italian crew is coming from the northern side of Lake Garda and will be led by Augusto Poropat, one of the youngest sailors of the fleet at 23 years of age. This already strong team have been sailing extremely well this season.

The Magic Marine Melges 24 European Championship will officially open on August 15. The races are scheduled between Saturday 17 and Thursday 22, when there will be no starting sequence after 14.30. The notice of race provides for a maximum of ten races, with a discard after the end of the sixth race. -- Fiona Brown

Marlow Excel Dinghy Series Upgrades
Marlow Ropes The upgrades to the Excel Dinghy Series launched at the beginning of the year prove successful for new breed of high performance Olympic classes. The higher performance 49er rigs, the 49erfx and Nacra 17 all demand higher performance than ever from their ropes.

Excel Elite 90

Excel Elite 90 utilises the super high strength Dyneema SK90 yarn which is 15% stronger than the Marlow standard SK78 equivalent. The cover features a highly durable blend of Technora and polyester which improves abrasion resistance 300% compared to a full polyester cover.

Excel Racing GP 78

Compared to Excel Racing 78, the cover features a highly durable blend of Technora and polyester which improves both abrasion resistance and also grip in wet hands.

British sailing team member and 49er European champion Dylan Fletcher explains "Performance and reliability are key factors, the members of Team GBR are upgrading some high load lines such as spinnaker halyards to Excel Elite 90. The added abrasion resistance and improvement in strength can only benefit our performance and decrease needless retirements due to gear failure."

Dalton Ups The Ante
Team New Zealand boss Grant Dalton has accused America's Cup holders Oracle of "cheating" during the recent world series.

Dalton upped the ante on last week's revelations that members of Sir Russell Coutts' Oracle syndicate had illegally altered three boats that were used in the America's Cup World Series over the last two years.

Oracle are under investigation by the international jury after measurement issues on the smaller 45-foot catamarans used in the series. It's a major embarrassment coming on the eve of the America's Cup final in San Francisco next month that will be sailed in the bigger AC72s.

"You can't actually get to any other point than the fact they were cheating," Dalton told the San Francisco Chronicle today.

"It's really serious."

Dalton dismissed Oracle's claims that the measurement infringements didn't affect performance and had been made without the knowledge of management.

"Why would you actually do it, if it didn't make a difference?" Dalton asked.

"Properly placed extra weight does improve the performance of the boat. Because of the design, you like the weight forward. You put one guy really far forward to keep the bow in the water.

"It's inconceivable that a shore crew member woke up one morning and decided it was a good idea - that management would think it was a good idea - that to make the boat faster you would put some weight in the boat, and then you'd come in to work one day and do it."

Dalton stopped short of accusing Coutts personally.

"I can only say that there's a management failure," he told the newspaper.

Henri Lloyd To Take Part In The Clipper Round The World Race 13-14
Henri Lloyd is proud to announce they will be the title sponsor of a team in the Clipper 13-14 Round the World Race which starts from St Katherine's Dock in London on the 1st September this year. The official naming of the Clipper 70 will take place on Saturday 31st August before the fleet set sail on the first leg of the epic challenge.

The naming ceremony will take place at St Katherine's Dock, London E1W just a stone's throw from Henri Lloyd's new concession at Nauticalia within St Katharine Docks. The Dock area is open to the public so visitors will be able to view the naming event from the quayside.

The Henri Lloyd Clipper 70 racing yacht will be named by legendary yachtsman and round the world sailor, Sir Robin Knox -Johnston who is the driving force behind The Clipper Round the World Race, with Mr Paul Strzelecki, CEO of Henri Lloyd.

Team Henri Lloyd will be skippered by Canadian Yachtsman Eric Holden. Eric is a meteorologist and was also selected as the Official Weather Forecaster for the Canadian Sailing Team during London 2012 Summer Olympics.

Russians Celebrate Douarnenez
The Gazprom International Gold Cup, to be held in Douarnenez from August 16 to August 24, is sponsored by Gazprom International. In 2006, when the Gold Cup also took place in Douarnenez, another Russian corporation, Petronord, supported the event. It's a testimony to the long lasting relationship between our bay and the Russian Dragon sailors, who have been coming to race here for more than 10 years.

On the Treboul harbour, the 80 volunteers are getting ready to greet 80 Dragons in a few days. About 20 countries will be represented. The event is a major one, both from a sporting and an economical aspect, and the impact that such a fleet will have on local tourism is considerable.

The Russians will come in force , with 13 boats already entered, among them several contenders for the top spot like Dmitry Samokhin or Vassily Senatorov. However the Russian Dragon crews will face some strong opponents. They will come from Ukraine (Markus Wieser and Evgeniy Braslavets), England (Gavia Wilkinson-Cox and Laurie Smith), Portugal (Jose Matoso), Germany (Thomas Muller), Denmark (Lars Hendricksen and Jorgen Schoner) and France (Remy Arnaud and Luc Pillot), picking from the best crews according to the IDA (International Dragon Association) ranking, among them some multiple Gold Cup winners. Crews from Hong-Kong, Italy, Sweden, Hungary, Belgium, Norway, the UAE, Finland and Holland will add to this global and prestigious fleet.

Red Bull Youth America's Cup
The 10 teams entered in the Red Bull Youth America's Cup received their AC45s today, marking the official beginning of the series created to give youth sailors a pathway to be an America's Cup sailor.

The Red Bull Youth America's Cup is scheduled Sept. 1-4 on San Francisco Bay, just off the America's Cup Village, at Marina Green. The 10 teams of national sailors, aged 19-24, represent eight countries: Australia, France, Germany, New Zealand, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, United States. New Zealand and the U.S. have two teams each. Each AC45 has been branded with the familiar Red Bull logo and flags of the representative nations.

The international teams were selected from two sets of trials in February, and the two U.S. teams were selected at trials last November.

The two American teams are led by skippers Charlie Buckingham and Ian Andrewes.

The American teams will have their hands full. The international teams include some highly successful sailors, such as Peter Burling of the New Zealand Sailing Team and Bernardo Freitas of the ROFF/Cascais Sailing Team. Burling was the silver medalist in the 49er at last summer's Olympics and Freitas placed 8th.

Switzerland's Team Tilt has spent 150 days practicing since last November

Invitational Cup: The British Are Coming
Later this summer, three British yacht club teams will travel to Newport, R.I., to compete in the 2013 New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup presented by Rolex. Representing the Royal Yacht Squadron, Royal Southern Yacht Club and Royal Thames Yacht Club, each 10-member crew will race against 17 other international teams aboard identically matched Swan 42s on Narragansett Bay from September 7-14, 2013. Royal Southern Yacht Club is making its first appearance in the regatta, while it will be the second and third appearances, respectively, for Royal Thames and the Royal Yacht Squadron.

Glynn Williams will helm the Royal Yacht Squadron entry for the second consecutive time at the 2013 New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup presented by Rolex

RYS, located on the Isle of Wight, and NYYC have a long history of collaborating on events, highlighted by the Transatlantic Race - the start of which is hosted by NYYC in Newport, with the finish festivities hosted by RYS.

The team representing Royal Southern Yacht Club (RSYC) will also include two younger members, each of whom is a veteran of The Academy, the RSYC's program for 18 to 25 year olds, which offers opportunities for its members to gain knowledge of the racing rules and race management in addition to racing keelboats.

The Royal Thames Yacht Club (RTYC) has also made including younger members in the makeup of their team a major focus. In fact, with an average age of 35, six of the 10-member team are veterans of the RTYC Sailing Academy which provides a focus and tangible support for younger members in building their sailing skill and experience.

John Greenland will helm the Royal Thames Yacht Club entry

Cork County Council IFDS World Sailing Championships
With only 12 days to go until the start of the Cork County Council IFDS (International Association for Disabled Sailing) World Championships, Kinsale is buzzing with excitement as teams from 18 nations arrive to practice in the venue for the three Paralympic classes Sonar, Skud 18 and 2.4mR classes. This is the first Paralympic event since the London 2012 Games and is one of only three World Championships leading up to the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

This is the first time that the IFDS World Championships will be hosted in Ireland.

75 boats with 120 competitors, 50 coaches and over 300 hundred family and friends are expected to gather in Kinsale for the event which will run from 25 August until 30 August. The opening ceremony will be held in the James O'Neill building in Kinsale at 6pm on Sunday 25 August before parading to Kinsale Yacht Club to present their nation's flags. Racing will commence on Monday 26 August with two races scheduled daily.

Irish eyes will be watching the Sonar class where 10-time Paralympian and member of the 'Providence Team IRL for Rio 2016' John Twomey, who is also current President of the International Association of Disabled Sailing, will be keen to perform well in his home waters.

John Twomey and his crew of Ian Costello and Anthony Hegarty will also face local competition as Ireland yields two further entries in the Sonar class. Paul McCarthy, Brian O'Mahoney and Paul Ryan will make up the second boat while a third entry will consist of Tralee's Jacqui Browne, Amy Kelehan and Austin O'Carroll.

In the 2.4mR class Helena Lucas (UK) who was the Gold medal at London 2012 will be the one to watch while in the two-handed Skud 18 focus will also be on Team GBR and the London 2012 bronze medallists Niki Birrell and Alexandra Rickham.

The IFDS Worlds 2013 is proudly sponsored by Cork County Council, Irish Sports Council, The Gathering, Lilly, Irish Sailing Association and Kinsale Yacht Club.

The America's Cup? Fine. The Mark Foy Trophy? New Zealand Wants That, Too.
Both stand to be available to the Kiwis Sept. 7-15 when San Francisco Bay hosts eight New Zealand teams among those competing in the Nespresso 18' International Skiff Regatta for the Mark Foy Trophy, while sharing the waterfront race course on race days with America's Cup defender Oracle Team USA and, most likely, Emirates Team New Zealand---for now the dominant challenger in its promising quest for the Auld Mug.

St. Francis Yacht Club manages the skiff event, independent of the AC competition.

After a practice day Saturday, racing starts Sunday, Sept. 8, followed by Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. After the two 72-foot America's Cup finalists match-race at mid-day and head back to harbor, up to 20 of the skiffs one-fourth their size will pick up the building breeze at 1:45 p.m. Pacific time.

The skiffs are aiming for 10 races overall, including the traditional 5.3-nautical mile Ronstan Bridge to Bridge race late Thursday afternoon.

Alex Vallings, whose New Zealand team won the skiff regatta last year, said this week, "Can't wait to get there and get sailing. The C-Tech team has been to S.F. for three years now and it is always a great regatta with excellent breeze, close racing and well organized.

As it is, they'll be launching their skiffs from the Marina Green spectator area deeper into the bay instead of from Crissy Field west of St. Francis.

Their 12th annual skirmish in San Francisco marks a step up in stature with the addition of the Mark Foy Trophy, a prize inspired by the vision of the Australian department store owner who in the late 19th century successfully introduced sailboat racing to a spectator audience, featuring the overpowered 18-footers.

While the JJ Giltinan regatta run annually in Sydney since 1938 is regarded as the class's world championship, the Mark Foy has gained global status entering its fifth year of spreading the skiff spirit to various world locations.

Notably, Vallings followed up last year's win at San Francisco with another in the 2012 Mark Foy on his home waters in Auckland. With Chris Kitchen and Joshua McCormack as crew, he returns to San Francisco with seven other Maersk Line NZ teams, joined by other current entries from Denmark, Germany and Great Britain.

Their competition also will include USA veteran Howie Hamlin of Long Beach, Calif. who was second to Vallings in both of the above events---by two points in the Mark Foy after winning four of the nine races. Hamlin will have regulars Matt Noble and Paul Allen as crew.

Hamlin, twice a Giltinan winner, also has won world titles in the 505 and International 14 classes and has been a key organizer in bringing global talent to this event, which he has won six times. -- Rich Roberts

Inter-Counties Sailing Championship 2013 Cancelled
Dublin, Ireland: Regrettably the Inter-Counties Sailing Championship will not be going ahead as scheduled on the 7th & 8th of September. Problems with finding enough funding support and issues shoreside have made it difficult to make the event a success. Waterways Racing would very much like to thank Waterways Ireland for the support they did put forward and also thank you to everyone who has shown such great enthusiasm for the event, it has been very much appreciated. Enjoy the rest of the summer.

Paul O Riain, Event Director, Waterways Racing

Featured Brokerage
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She has been upgraded with lots of new gear and work, including complete electrical re-wiring, new electronics, new mainsail, and more.

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Complete listing details and seller contact information at

The Last Word
The ant is knowing and wise, but he doesn't know enough to take a vacation. -- Clarence Day

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