Brought to you by Seahorse magazine, 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 editor@scuttlebutteurope.com

Vestas Wind Systems Completes Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 Line-Up
Alicante, Spain: Vestas, the world's leading wind energy company, was today announced as the seventh and final boat for the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15.

Six-time world champion Chris Nicholson, who will be contesting his fifth race, will skipper the boat and work is already well underway to ready the Danish company's team for the race start in October.

Two Danes, Nicolai Sehested and Peter Wibroe, will feature in the eight-man crew. Sehested, 24, is among the youngest from his country to have competed in the race.

Team Vestas Wind will join Team SCA, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, Dongfeng Race Team, Team Brunel, Team Alvimedica and a Spanish team whose title sponsor has yet to be announced, on the start line.

The boat will face its first test on water in mid-August as the crew prepares to sail the 2,000 nautical miles qualifying distance, a pre-requisite of joining the Volvo Ocean Race which starts with the In-port race in Alicante on October 4.

volvooceanrace.com

Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland
Musandam - Oman Sail reached Out Stack, the rock north of Muckle Flugga and the most northerly part of the course, just before 1500 BST 12th August.

The MOD 70, skippered by Sidney Gavignet, has about 46 hours to complete the remaining 1098 miles to set a new world record. Musandam - Oman Sail has averaged an astonishing 24 knots on a screaming reach up to the top of the course and needs to average the same, or better, on the way back down. A new breeze is from the North West and came in just as the trimaran turned for home. It looks like a reach all the way down the west coast of Scotland and Ireland and maybe, just maybe, Musandam - Oman Sail can beat the 2011 record set by Banque Populaire 5, which is twice as long as Musandam - Oman Sail.

Since the fleet left Cowes on Monday morning, the wind speed across the entire course has barely dropped below 25 knots and reports of over 40 knots of wind have been recorded by many competitors.

The Volvo Ocean 65 fleet have been launched right from the start and the crews are also feeling a few knocks and bruises. Team Dongfeng's Pascal Bidegorry required stitches to a hand wound and one of the Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing Team has bruised ribs from a fall down below.

A tremendous battle is raging between Azzam, skippered by Ian Walker, and Team Campos, skippered by Iker Martinez. Azzam has a substantial lead heading towards Muckle Flugga, but the wind shadow of the Shetland Islands and the low pressure system, which is almost stationary at the top of the course, means that there could be some very funky weather as the two leaders round Out Stack tonight.

The main trophy and a $20,000 shipping voucher from Sevenstar Yacht Transport are up for grabs in IRC and the well travelled Volvo 70 Monster Project, skippered by Andrew Budgen, has been in the driving seat for the last two updates. Monster Project is just 170 miles from Out Stack and still in the overall lead but the Volvo 70 has been slowing down in the last few hours, averaging about 4 knots less than her speed from the start. Just behind, Jens Kellinghusen's Ker 51, Varuna, has maintained her average speed of about 15 knots and is closing the time correction gap on Monster Project at virtually every tracker update. However, looking at the weather ahead, the forecast is for the breezy conditions to hold at the top of the course for at least another 24 hours which may favour Monster Project.

roundbritainandireland.rorc.org

Marinepool - Clothing Partner of the Extreme Sailing Series™
Marinepool is widely regarded as one of the leading sailing clothing and maritime lifestyle brands and is the "Official Clothing Partner" of the Extreme Sailing Series™.

We have built a reputation for outstanding quality, excellent service and quick and reliable deliveries. These are only a few of the reasons why no less than 4 of this year´s teams in the Extreme Sailing Series™, among them 2012 and 2013 Champions The Wave, Muscat, are racing in Marinepool kit.

Using only the best materials and state of the art production technologies, no detail is omitted to ensure every product is optimized before it reaches the market. More than 23 years of experience and design excellence, plus the invaluable input of the world class athletes proudly wearing Marinepool garments, guarantee the products are at the cutting edge of technology.

Uncompromising, highly functional and extremely light weight; Tested and approved by many of the world's finest sailors.

As a group of companies with German roots and head quarters, operating in 43 countries, with product lines ranging from performance sailing clothing and a test winning life jacket range to maritime fashion, Marinepool is uniquely qualified and the perfect match for the clothing requirements of YOUR sailing team or company.

Purchase the Extreme Sailing Series™ Collection by Marinepool directly from the official online store: http://www.extreme-sailing-series-store.com or contact us for your customized team wear on info@marinepool.com

Marinepool | Design. Technology. Passion.

www.marinepool.com

Squall Hits GP14 World Champioinship
There were chaotic scenes at the GP14 World Championship yacht race after a sudden squall capsized several boats with around 20 people - including several children - ending up in the water.

Initially it was feared that as many as 95 people had tumbled into the water in Strangford Lough, Co Down. However, following the end of the incident, the coastguard confirmed that 20 went overboard.

A major rescue operation was staged from around 2pm yesterday, and completed by just after 4pm.

The Irish Coast Guard sent a helicopter from Dublin while a second was sent from RAF Valley in Wales to help the Bangor and Portaferry Coastguard rescue teams and the Portaferry and Newcastle RNLI lifeboats with the effort.

The Ulster Hospital declared a major incident as it awaited the arrival of casualties.

In the end, only two people sustained minor injuries while many more were reported as suffering from hypothermia.

www.independent.ie/irish-news/

Event: www.gp14.org/events/2014-world-championship/

Negri and Lambertenghi Lead the 2014 Star Easterns
Brunnen, Switzerland, Another roller-coaster day was added to the 2014 International Star Class Eastern Hemisphere Championship today, Race Day 3, with a 3 hour onshore postponement this morning followed by a relatively stable northerly afternoon breeze. Happily, however, competitors were able to continue the battle at 3.20 pm when Race 4 finally got underway.

The final leg was just as exciting as the previous 3 down to the very last metre. The Greeks Papathanasiou/Tsotras (GRE 8434) gave no sign of defeat and continued to chase Negri/Lambertenghi (ITA 8491), allowing no more than 10 metres between them the entire leg. Behind them another blistering match race was unfoldng as Gautschi/Schenk (SUI 8409) took a commanding position ahead of Lofstedt/Kleen and Rotermund/Hollweg.

Thanks to the completion of this fourth race, the Star Eastern Hemisphere Championship title and Silver Star status can now be awarded.

The Top 5 teams overall according to the provisional results are:

1. Diego Negri & Sergio Lambertenghi, ITA, 6-1-1-1: 9 points
2. Emilios Papathanasiou & Antonis Tsotras, GRE, 3-5-3-2: 13
3. George Szabo & Serge Pulfer, USA, 2-2-7-15: 26
4. Hubert Merkelbach & Gerrit Bartel, GER, 7-7-12-7: 33
5. Tom Lofstedt & Frithjof Kleen, SWE, 9-14-16-4: 43

swiss-star-class.ch/em-brunnen-2014
live.starsailors.com

Pyefleet Week
Brightlingsea, Essex, UK: Day three of Brightlingsea Sailing Club's Pyefleet Week 2014 brought a slight moderation of the winds which had plagued the the first two days and both the morning and afternoon racing sessions were run for almost all classes, with the exception of the Brightlingsea One Designs.

Although still a blustery force four to five from the west-north-west, the morning session went off without delays for the Fast Handicap, Lasers, Teras, Wivenhoe One Designs and Cadet Handicap. The classic Wivenhoe One Designs and the Cadets started from the club line and were set courses that kept them within the shelter of the river, while the other classes started from the committee boat and went out into the more open estuary.

Several of the Wivenhoe One Designs, the oldest of which was built in 1935, elected to reef to help them cope with the gusty conditions on what was their first race of the regatta. These pretty little classic day boats enjoyed great racing on an upriver course.

The rising spring tide brought an increase in the wind strength and for a while the afternoon racing session looked to be in doubt, but fortunately it moderated a little and the race committee elected to run racing from the club line for all but the Brightlingsea One Designs.

Tomorrow is Big Wednesday at Pyefleet Week, which traditionally features an all in handicap start for all classes at 14.30. In addition a race will also be run for the BOD fleet at 11.30 in the morning. With the forecast for slightly less wind everyone is very much looking forward to finally seeing the BODs in all their glory and to enjoying some more relaxed racing for Big Wednesday.

Pyefleet Week continues until Saturday 16 August.

pyefleetweek.com

Dennis Conner International Yacht Club Challenge in New York Harbor
New York, NY, USA: Nineteen teams of amateur club sailors from 14 nations will come together from August 15th to 17th to compete in the Sixth Dennis Conner International Yacht Club Challenge organized by the NY Harbor Sailing Foundation. The races will take place on boats borrowed from the Manhattan Yacht Club, one of the largest community sailing organizations in the country with more than 900 members and will take place at North Cove, the mega yacht marina in Battery Park City in Lower Manhattan.

The three-day spectacular will feature a daily series of hour-long races in New York Harbor. All of the races will begin and end at Manhattan Yacht Club's floating clubhouse located in the harbor, near Ellis Island.

The NY Harbor Sailing Foundation was founded in 1994 and organizes sailing programs in the harbor such as Operation Optimist, a junior sailing program for kids.

Founded in 1987, Manhattan Yacht Club has reintroduced recreational sailing to the harbor after a 60-year absence.

The 19 teams from 14 nations include:

- Manhattan Yacht Club (United States) - 2 Teams
- Club Universitario de Buenos Aires (Argentina) - 2 Teams
- Norddeutscher Regatta Verein (Germany)
- Royal Melbourne Yacht Squadron (Australia) - 2 Teams
- Nissan Marina Tokai (Japan)
- Howth Yacht Club (Ireland) - 2 Teams
- Fenerbahce Sailing Club "Team Goblin" (Turkey)
- Royal Cork Yacht Club (Ireland)
- Societe Nautique de la Baie de Saint-Malo (France)
- Royal Norwegian Yacht Club (Norway)
- Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club (Bermuda)
- Royal Danish Yacht Club (Denmark)
- Cercle de la Voile de la Societe Nautique de Geneve (Switzerland)
- Shanghai Boat and Yacht Club (China)
- Royal Cape Yacht Club (South Africa)

nyharborsailing.com
www.myc.org

Doyle Sailmakers Delivers Sails to 60m Perini Navi Sloop Perseus 3
Salem, Mass. - Doyle Sailmakers has fit sails on the impressive new 60m Perini Navi Sloop, Perseus 3, in La Spezia, Italy this past week.

Perseus 3 stands apart from its peers with both a carbon clearcoat mast - one of the world's tallest - and her impressive sail wardrobe, including the world's largest sail, an A2 spinnaker measuring 28,010 square feet (2,602 metres) in area.

Perseus 3 is the first vessel from Perini Navi to include a bow sprit. The two spinnakers are some of the largest sails ever made. The massive A2 Spinnaker utilizes over 3,200 yards of cloth. Initially, there was no existing fabric capable of delivering high performance, light weight and a 'soft hand' for handling. The solution was an extensively tested fabric that blends Polyester with Dyneema. The Code 0 will also fly off the sprit, and is being furled on the largest Top Down Furling Cable ever created by Future Fibres.

After previous success with Top Down Furling for Code 0's - with the cable in a contained luff sleeve - this was selected for Perseus 3 to enable the crew to quickly furl the sail and stow it easily. The Code 0 has been constructed using Doyle Sailmaker's proprietary Stratis process, with curved radial seams to follow the path of the loads and enable precise shaping, high strength and minimal weight. -- Laurie Fullerton

www.doylesails.com/news/2014/08/perseus3.html

Laserperformance Collegiate Cup
LaserPerformance is proud to announce the launch of the LaserPerformance Collegiate Cup (LPCC). The LaserPerformance Collegiate Cup is a global invitational event that challenges the best university sailors, and the best teams, from around the world to represent their countries in head to head competition.

The first global LPCC will be held in August of 2015.

Hosted by Yale University under the auspices of the Intercollegiate Sailing Association (ICSA), the inaugural LPCC will be governed by ICSA rules.

Up to 12 teams, each with 6 or more sailors ages 18-25, will compete for their countries in LaserPerformance's double handed Z420s. The event will include a practice day, a team race clinic and 3 days of competition in which teams are challenged with a mix of team racing and fleet racing. The winning team will receive a brand new LaserPerformance Z420 in addition to the Collegiate Cup.

More event information and documents will be available soon at www.laserperformance.com

Unexploded Bomb Stops Work On Cup Bid HQ
An unexploded Second World War bomb halted work on the Hampshire headquarters for Sir Ben Ainslie's America's Cup bid.

The device was discovered in the building area where the Lymington-based Olympic sailing star is having his new multi-million pound headquarters constructed in Portsmouth.

The shell was found at around 3.30pm yesterday, causing police to set up a cordon at Portsmouth Cathedral to prevent people from accessing Sallyport and The Point.

The Royal Navy bomb squad was drafted in and safely removed the shell. The cordon was lifted just before 5.30pm.

www.dailyecho.co.uk

Shogun Back In The Game and First Festival Of Sails Entry
The overhauled TP52 Shogun is the first official entry for the 2015 Festival of Sails, owner Rob Hanna showing support for his yacht club and adding some grand prix weight to Victoria's premier sailing regatta to be staged January 17-26.

Shogun disappeared off the radar last December after its mast came crashing down off Palm Beach during the final stage of the four-part Southern Cross Cup class series. The boat was already on the market and suddenly a much cheaper buy.

Hanna flirted with the idea of a super modern lightweight 40-footer, but after looking around at the options and crunching the numbers he came back to his beloved TP.

Hanna replaced the previous Med Cup style rig with a taller and stronger carbon mast designed to help the helmsman in the lower wind ranges, new carbon forestay and boom that allows a reef,. This opens the door for Shogun to enter Cat 2 short and medium coastal passage races.

An extended 2015 Festival of Sails regatta begins when the multihulls start rolling in from around the country to compete in their annual Australian Multihull Championships from Saturday 17th January. The diverse mix of racing and cruising catamarans and trimarans will compete on a mix of courses around Corio Bay and Port Phillip, until Friday 23rd January. As the multis complete a reverse passage race up to Melbourne, on Thursday 22nd January, the exciting Sportsboats will hit the water, to take advantage of the great conditions that are synonymous with fast yacht racing on Corio Bay.

For more than 300 entries, the iconic 34Nm Melbourne to Geelong Passage Race, on Friday 23rd January, signals the start of a great weekend of racing and Australia Day long weekend celebrations, to be held in Geelong. -- Lisa Ratcliff

festivalofsails.com.au

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The Last Word
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