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Mini Transat - A Pause In Spain
The Race Director of the Mini Transat has decided to implement plan B, which had been mentioned before the start at the last competitor briefing. The fleet will now stop at the port of Sada, near La Coruna, to wait for the strong winds from the south-west that will sweep Cape Finisterre, on 1 and 2 November to moderate and go northwest. The fleet is expected to arrive in the area on the night of October 31 to November 1.

Crossing the Bay of Biscay reqires a weather window of about four days to clear the entire fleet.

The window seemed to have finally opened yesterday morning, but conditions are deteriorating in Finisterre again, hence the decision of the Race Director who does not want to take any risk with the tail end of the fleet. The Race Director has chosen to anticipate the decision to warn the front runners before the point where the strategic options open up for the fleet, this to ensure fairness. A finish line will be set up in Sada.

The ranking of the first leg will the accumulated times for Douarnenez - Sada and Sada - Lanzarote. Competitors were warned by VHF through the intermediary of the support boats and by BLU of the weather break. A confirmation of receipt was requested for each competitor.

ISAF Match Race Rankings
There is no change at World #1 in the Open and Women's Match Race Rankings with Taylor Canfield (ISV) and Lucy Macgregor (GBR) holding firm at the top.

Taylor Canfield's (ISV) third place finish at the Argo Group Gold Cup was enough for him to retain the World #1 spot and to take the overall lead in the Alpari World Match Racing Tour.

ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year nominee and World #2 Ian Williams (GBR) finished sixth in Bermuda and dropped to second, ten points behind Canfield in the Tour standings.

Francesco Bruni (ITA) secured victory at the Argo Group Gold Cup by defeating Ben Ainslie (GBR) in the final. The result pushes the former World #1 up to World #115 from World #196. The Italian counts four events in his ranking total having devoted time to Luna Rossa Challenge after finishing the 2011 World Match Racing Tour as runner-up.

Staffan Lindberg (FIN) continues to climb up the rankings and after taking top spot at the ISAF Grade 2 Geneva International Match Race he moves to World #9 and just four spots off his best ranking of #5 that came in October 2007.

Ireland's Philip Bendon came out on top at the ISAF Grade 3 EUROSAF Match Racing, Open Youth European Championship in Lake Constance, Germany and as a result moves from World #101 to World #57, a personal best.

Lucy Macgregor (GBR) is firmly positioned at World #1 in the Women's Rankings with over 1,000 points separating her and World #2 Camilla Ulrikkeholm (DEN).

Two ISAF Grade 3 regattas took place in the current period ensuring some movement below the top spots.

Australia's Rayshele Martin took the honours at the Australian Women's Match Racing Championship in New South Wales. Martin overcame Milly Bennett (AUS) to take maximum points from the event.

The result pushes Martin from World #60 to World #25, a personal best whilst Bennett moves up two spots to World #19.

Top ten open rankings:

1. Taylor Canfield, ISV
2. Ian Williams, GBR
3. Bjorn Hansen, SWE
4. Keith Swinton, AUS
5. Philip Robertson, NZL
6. Nicolai Sehested, DEN
7. Mathieu Richard, FRA
8. Simone Ferrarese, ITA
9. Staffan Lindberg, FIN
10. Johnie Berntsson, SWE

Complete open rankings:

Top ten women's rankings:

1. Lucy Macgregor, GBR
2. Camilla Ulrikkeholm, DEN
3. Anna Kjellberg, SWE
4. Lotte Medgaard Pedersen, DEN
5. Stephanie Roble, USA
6. Ekaterina Skudina, RUS
7. Claire Leroy, FRA
8. Tamara Echegoyen, ESP
9. Alexa Bezel, SUI
10. Julie Bossard, FRA

Complete women's rankings:

Race Onboard a Volvo 70
Volvo Ocean Race Exciting opportunity to join Volvo 70 Monster Project (ex Team Russia) for Transatlantic ARC race starting on 24th November from Grand Canaria, finishing in st Lucia. Hoping to beat the record time of 11 days. Be part of the crew and experience extreme ocean racing.

Project Racing are offering places on our Volvo 70 "Monster Project". We are hoping to smash the ARC record if the weather is right. There will be a maximum of 10 guests and 6 crew, Ocean Master skipper Andy Budgen and his 5 qualified crew will be there to make the trip both safe and enjoyable.

Check out

Star Sailors League Final
The Star Sailors League (SSL) is proud to announce its first ever event: the 2013 SSL Final. The invitational event will be held at the Nassau Yacht Club from December 3rd to December 8th, 2013, with the best Star sailors from 11 countries competing.

Most of the leaders in the SSL Ranking list have already confirmed their participation - Robert Scheidt (BRA), Xavier Rohart (FRA), Freddy Loof (SWE), Eivind Melleby (NOR), Michael Hestbaek (DEN), Flavio Marazzi (SUI), Johannes Polgar (GER), Robert Stanjek (GER), Mateusz Kusznierewicz (POL), George Szabo (USA) and Diego Negri (ITA). Also confirmed is Paul Cayard (USA), long time Star sailor and 1992 Louis Vuitton Cup Winner, who will compete as a welcome guest. Further participants will be confirmed.

This event will also be the first Star event with the new race format – for all 18 boats, regatta style racing for three days, with no more than four races per day and a maximum of nine races in all – followed by an innovative fourth day: the top ten from the previous days will compete in the three final races with a progressive drop-out of three boats per session. So the last day of racing will begin with ten boats in the quarter final, seven in the semi-final and only four in the final. The overall winner of the event will be the team that first crosses the line in the final race, and will receive 4,000 SSL points.

Valencia Sailing:

Start Your Engines
Bob Fisher joined the women of Team SCA as they trialled the first Volvo Ocean 65

SCA - the 'women's boat' for the next Volvo Ocean Race - was resplendent in her pink livery at the dock in Ocean Village, the first of the one-design 65-footers to be launched (although officially number two from the builders). She was an inviting prospect for a sail on a mild October morning, but one could have wished for rather more wind - it's an old cry: 'You should have been here Friday' when the breeze was up and photographer Rick Tomlinson had a field day (above).

Comparisons are odious but 40 years ago the first Whitbread Round the World Race was won by a very different 65-footer, the Swan 65 Sayula II, which had suffered a capsize in the Southern Ocean and still won that second leg into Sydney on corrected time. The Volvo Ocean 65, externally, looked capable of being able to repeat that performance, but with less possibility of its occurrence!

The idea of a one-design for the race had been long in the mind of Knut Frostad, the CEO of the Volvo Ocean Race, a man with his own experience of skippering a pink boat, Djuice, in an earlier edition. That had been a 60-footer designed and built to a restricted rule, but in his current role Knut began thoughts of a one-design in 2008.

These, however, he didn't progress, but by the start of the last race, in 2011, they had begun to take shape in his mind.

At this time, according to James Dadd, the class project manager, Knut was approached by several groups including a consortium syndicate of Green Marine, Multiplast, Persico and Decision SA, along with Farr Yacht Design, concerning the idea.

Full article in Seahorse magazine:

8th International Council Of Yacht Clubs Commodores' Forum
Hosted by the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, 12 to 15 November 2013.

Last hosted by the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club in 2006, the forthcoming 8th ICOYC Commodores' Forum will features a week of activities packed with six business sessions and socials events as well as a partner programme.

To date, over 70 visitors from 29 yacht clubs and 16 countries have confirmed their attendance.

Each discussion topic will include insightful presentations, a Q&A session, and breakout group discussions - all carefully designed to ensure each person gets the maximum benefit out of each topic.

The topics are (1) Ways to Recruit, Develop and Retain Young Members and Top Sailors, (2) Sponsorship and Long Term Finance, (3) Club Management, (4) Ways to Develop and Sustain Race Support - Effective Race Management, (5) Dealings with Community and Government and (6) Succession Planning and Leadership Training.

The last ICOYC Commodores' Forum was hosted by the Royal Southern Yacht Club in Hamble, United Kingdom in 2012 and the next Forum is scheduled to be hosted by the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron in 2015.

Volvo Ocean Race SCA Team Kicks Off Training With Ocean Safety Package
Ocean Safety The first Ocean Safety equipped Volvo Ocean 65 has launched. The all-female SCA team put their boat in the water for the first time in Southampton after completion at Green Marine in the UK. Ocean Safety, which will kit out every yacht in the Volvo fleet, has worked closely with the Volvo Ocean Race organisation to specify the best possible and most technologically advanced safety inventory. The radical new VO65 yachts and crew will be equipped according to the exacting Volvo Ocean Race safety regulations, based around the ISAF & RORC Category Zero rules.

The Ocean Safety equipment inventory includes custom equipped Zodiac Commercial liferafts each with a Volvo bespoke safety pack installed. Also included are Jonbuoy man overboard recovery systems, Hansson pyrotechnics, and a personal life saving Kannad R10 AIS recovery system for each crew member. On deck Ocean Safety will be supplying inflatable Jonbuoy horseshoe lifebuoys, Apollo lifebuoy lights and Hansson 15min smoke floats.

Ocean Safety has been providing training and support with the equipment while SCA has been undergoing technical sea trails in the UK.

The yacht has now reached Puerto Calero, Lanzarote where the team has its base, for extensive winter training. Ocean Safety will be installing the safety inventory on each of the yachts as they roll off the production line in the coming months.

Off To A Good Start
Spindrift 2 - the world's largest racing trimaran - crossed the start line on the Discovery Route on Wedneday October 30st at 15hrs, 19 ms, 34 seconds GMT this afternoon ( 16hrs, 19ms, 34 seconds Paris time) on a bid to beat the record between Cadiz - San Salvador in the Bahamas, via the Canaries, set in 2007 by Franck Cammas and the maxi trimaran Groupama 3.

Dona Bertarelli, Yann Guichard and the twelve crew members must cross the finish line in under Thursday, november 7th at 02hrs, 17ms, and 27 seconds to beat the current record of 7 days, 10 hours, 58 minutes and 53 seconds (21.70 knots of average speed).

On standby in Portimao in southern Portugal since October 7th, Spindrift 2 is taking advantage today of the first serious weather window to arrive following a long period of low pressure systems. From the start of the race, the maxi trimaran should get the strong winds from the north that will propel it towards Gran Canaria, which they must leave to starboard. There will be a series of gybes to manage and the still rough sea state from the recent storms to contend with.

"This is a very long record attempt compared to the North Atlantic (3 days 19 hours), and we will have to be on good form throughout ... "

Dotcom Wants To Challenge Oracle In Tech Stakes
Kim Dotcom says he would like to offer his technological expertise to Team New Zealand for the next America's Cup challenge.

Mr Dotcom said he was due to have a meeting with team boss Grant Dalton soon.

He told TV ONE's Breakfast his company is still relatively small so he hoped to contribute a couple of million.

"But I think the greatest competition that I can make is help in terms of technology, develop a simulator that allows them to measure mathematically much better how they can advance the technology on the boat in order to be faster and compete better against Team Oracle so I see this as more of an intellectual challenge against the Oracle founder."

He said he thought it was "a great thing" that the Government has pledged $5 million in "bridging" funding to Team New Zealand.

Why Can't Professional Skippers Work Without Borders In Europe?
The ground-breaking European Union-funded TRECVET project held its final project conference in Palma de Mallorca last month.

TRECVET stands for Transnational Recognition of European Certification in Vocational Education and Training.

The aim of the project and conference was to initiate European-wide dialogue about recognition of professional skipper qualifications between Member States.

Mike John, TRECVET project coordinator, reports: 'The conference was a great success and we were overwhelmed with the attendance of 75 people including many professional skippers, national authorities, nautical associations, charter companies, crew agencies, sea and diving schools.

'This shows that the problem the project addresses has a very wide impact on the industry.

'The feedback has been very positive and constructive, with UK and Spanish authorities recognising the need for more cooperation.'

It is hoped the legacy of this project and the conference will be to stimulate cooperation between authorities, generate pressure group activity and create greater worker mobility and opportunities for professional maritime personnel and vocational workers in many other sectors.

Practical Boat Owner:

Featured Brokerage
Featured Brokerage Boat 1997 Gib'Sea 414 Plus. 79,950 GBP. Located In Southampton, Hampshire, United Kingdom.

This Gib'Sea 414 Plus is an extremely elegant Cruiser Racer designed by Rob Humphries & built in 1997. She is in very good condition and has recently had a brand new Seldon Mast fitted as well as new standing rigging. She is a very spacious yacht with a light, bright saloon, two good size double cabins and two bathrooms as well as the luxury of heating and hot water.

Brokerage through Aspire Boat Sales Ltd.:

Complete listing details and seller contact information at

The Last Word
Who wants to live forever? -- Freddie Mercury

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Editorial and letter submissions to

Advertising inquiries to Graeme Beeson: or see

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