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

A Race Of Contrasts
Constitution Dock, Hobart is buzzing with activity after a stream of boats crossed the finish line throughout Day 4 of the 2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

By 17:00 AEDT, 39 yachts had completed the 628-nm race, as the docks filled with tales from another dramatic contest. Of the 117 starters, 65 yachts are still sailing and a further 13 officially retired, unable to complete the course.

Current forecasts have four veteran yachts - Love & War, Quikpoint Azzurro,Wild Rose and the fleet's smallest and oldest boat Maluka of Kermandie - all in contention for overall victory. All three boats represent vast contrasts to the sleek, carbon fibre-built 100-foot Maxis which dominated the race for line honours.

Simon Kurts' Love & War is a three-time winner of the race (1974, 1978, 2006). The boat, built over forty years ago, needs to arrive in Hobart before midnight this evening to retain any chance of claiming an unprecedented fourth Tattersall's Cup.

Roger Hickman's Farr 43 Wild Rose is a mere 29 years old and pushing hard for that elusive first Tattersall's Cup. In poignant synergy, Wild Rose was once owned by Wild Oats XI's Bob Oatley, whose crew yesterday claimed a record-breaking eighth line honours victory.

Another wooden classic is Maluka of Kermandie, a gaff-rigged huon pine beauty. Owned by one of the race's colourful characters, Sean Langman, the 30-footer still lies some 122-nm from the finish line.

Currently leading on handicap though is Shane Kearns' Sparkman & Stephens 34 Quickpoint Azzurro 108-nm from Hobart.

www.rolexsydneyhobart.com

Barcelona World Race: A Day To The Start
The 16 skippers, eight duos, who are set to take on the 2014-2015 Barcelona World Race gathered to face the media at today's busy official press conference, the last official gathering of all the teams before the race start on 31st December, now less than 48 hours away.

The conference was opened by Jean Kerhoas, IMOCA Class President, who introduced the UNESCO marine research and education programmes which are essential to this edition of the race, innovating by integrating the round the world competition with an ambitious scientific research programme and a global, openly available further education programme.

He was followed by Race Director Jacques Caraes who explained the starting procedure, which will see the eight IMOCA 60s start at 1300hrs, heading north-easterly along the Barcelona beachfront, before rounding the North Buoy turning mark and heading for Gibraltar and the Atlantic.

But all attention was focused on the 16 sailors gathered on stage. As ever body language and attitude spoke louder and more comprehensively than the words they uttered. Some, like veteran Jean Le Cam (Cheminees Poujoulat), appearing like it was just another work day at the office, relaxed and enjoying the build-up to his second Barcelona World Race. -- Sabina Mollart-Rogerson

www.barcelonaworldrace.org

Seahorse February 2015
What's in the Latest Edition Of Seahorse Magazine

I'll be back
Jocelyn Bleriot talks to Armel Le Cleac'h about Rhum disappointment and also the exciting Vendee Globe story that lies ahead...

Man at the helm
He won the first Fastnet Race and went on to found an 'Ocean Racing Club' in its image... Clare Mccomb and Ben Hooge - Werf look back at the fascinating life of EG 'George' Martin

The story of a passion...
From offshore oil exploration to creating an innovative new range of IRC designs... Patrice Carpentier talks to incoming Archambault Shipyard supremo Thomas Duhen

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OK Dinghy Hall Of Fame - Aussie, Aussie, Aussie
Three very long-standing Australian members of the OK Dinghy class were inducted into the OKDIA Hall of Fame during the opening ceremony of the 2014 World Championship at Black Rock Yacht Club, Melbourne, Australia, on Sunday 28 December. Bill Bell, Roger Blasse and Andre Blasse were all presented with engraved crystal mementoes to mark the occasion.

The OKDIA Hall of Fame was conceived in 2007 as a way to acknowledge the success of its top sailors and those who have made an outstanding contribution to the class. Since 2007, 18 sailors have now been inducted into the OKDIA Hall of Fame including World Champions and class administrators from all generations of the class.

Members of the OKDIA Hall of Fame
(with year of induction)

Jorgen Lindhardtsen, Denmark, 2007
Leith Armit, New Zealand, 2007
Clive Roberts, New Zealand, 2007
Norbert Petrausch, Germany, 2008
Marian Jankowski, Poland, 2008
Bill Tyler, Australia, 2008
Basil Crosby, Great Britain, 2009
Bo-Staffan Andersson, Sweden, 2009
Nick Craig, Great Britain, 2012
Axel Damgaard, Denmark later USA, 2012
Paul Elvstrom, Denmark, 2012
Svend Jacobsen, Denmark, 2012
Alf Lock, New Zealand, 2012
Knud Olsen, Denmark, 2012
Greg Wilcox, New Zealand, 2012
Bill Bell, Australia, 2014
Roger Blasse, Australia, 2014
Andre Blasse, Australia, 2014

Class website: www.okdia.org
Event website: www.okworlds2014.com
Club website: www.bryc.yachting.org.au

RS400 Wins A Cold, Light Brass Monkey
Click on image to enlarge.

Dire forecasts of drifting snow put off quite a few of the 112 competitors who'd registered for the Brass Monkey at Yorkshire Dales SC. Nonetheless 86 boats made the effort to compete at the third event in the GJW Direct SailJuice Winter Series. They were rewarded by the sight of sun drenched, snow covered hills and a decent 9 knot westerly breeze.

The fleet was split into three starts using average lap times to accommodate the different boats with last year's winners Matty and James Lyons back to defend their title in a 49er at one end of the spectrum, and Mirrors at the other.

After the two races, there was a tie for first - broken on count back. So the winners of the 2014 Brass Monkey were Chris Pickles & Matt Sharman (RS400) counting 2,4 with Steve Walker & Jerry Hannabuss (Scorpion) counting 3,3 in a very close second place. Final spot on the podium went to Eddie & Rachel Grayson (RS200), beating club rivals Martin & Tom Pentys' 200 by a single point. Michael Sims Solo was 5th with Oliver Davenport and Kieran Hill next in their Lasers. The first Enterprise and 8th overall were Charles & Megan Adams with two more Solos sailed by Andy Tunnicliffe and Chris Robinson completing the top ten.

With the postponement of the Grafham Grand Prix to 22 February 2015, the next event in the GJW Direct Sailjuice Winter Series is the Oxford Blue this Saturday, 3 January 2015. -- Keith Escritt

Full results: events.sailracer.org

www.SailJuiceSeries.com

An Absorbing Interest. The America's Cup - A History
By Bob Fisher (£250 + p&p)

Revised limited edition signed by the author. Now down to the last 2 dozen copies... you've ticked off every box on your gift list... except one for yourself. Go ahead, you deserve this!

This coveted  2-volume slip-case edition has become a collector's item as important to the history of the Cup, as Lawson's original 'History of the America's Cup' published in 1901. 

There will be no reprint: the remaining copies are the final ones for sale.

These two beautifully designed tomes chart the history of sailing's most enigmatic and greatest prize, covering  the dramas, designs, and personalities from the first race around the Isle of Wight in 1851 to 2003 in Auckland where Ernesto Bertarelli and his largely Kiwi renegade team stole the Cup away to Europe. It is this rich history that has  led to the sheer fascination of what has become the oldest international sporting event. Heavily illustrated with rare etchings, lithographs, line drawings, paintings and pictures, all chosen to complement the text, this collector's edition charts every Cup match in great detail and can rightly claim to be a definitive history. 

The perfect gift for all those fascinated by the Cup

"This is the Bible of the America's Cup." Bruno Troublé - Louis Vuitton

View sample pages: www.southatlanticpublishing.com/aai_sample.htm

Purchase online at southatlanticpublishing.com

Sydney To Hobart Plane Crash
Debris from a plane that nose-dived into the sea off Tasmania's south-east coast has been picked up by crews taking part in the Sydney to Hobart yacht race.

The items, including a headrest and headphones, were recovered last night when several crews went to the aid of those on board the plane, and have been handed to police.

The 2008 Cessna 172 crashed into the sea near Tasman Island at about 6:30pm (AEDT) on Monday.

On board the aircraft were pilot Sam Langford, 29, and 61-year-old Tim Jones from Hobart, who was taking photographs of the race.

Police said the plane sank within 30 seconds and no-one was seen evacuating.

Inspector Lee Renshaw said the water at the site was 90 metres deep but some debris had been found.

Acting Assistant Commissioner Tony Cerritelli from Tasmania Police said the crew of Mistraal, a Tasmanian entrant, saw the plane banking at just above mast height moments before crashing nose-first into the water about 300 metres away from them.

au.gwn7.yahoo.com

Warren Brown
Sailing with Warren: Pictured, from left, are (back row) Chummie White, Jay Kempe, John Wadson, Reid Kempe; and (front row) Malcolm Kirkland, Warren Brown, Paul Doughty. The crew are sailing in September 2003 on War Baby on her last major quest, the Classic Boat Series which he won. The hills of Monaco are in the background. Click on image to enlarge.

The Royal Bermuda Yacht Club and the entire Bermuda sailing community and indeed sailors around the world were saddened to learn of the death of Warren Brown. One of Bermuda's greatest sailing icons, Warren died Christmas Day at King Edward VII Hospital in Bermuda after surgical complications.

Warren had a long and effective sailing career spanning six decades. Upon return from gaining his degree from Yale University he began working in his family retail business in Bermuda and racing in International One Designs. In 1960, he won the prestigious King Edward VII Gold cup in his yacht War Baby.

Warren bought his first ocean racer in the early 1960s and named it Force Seven completing its first Newport Bermuda race in 1964. As a co-founder of the Onion Patch Series in that year, he was a member of the Onion Patch team sailing his yacht Force 7 for Bermuda.

The boat was being delivered back to Newport in early September when they encountered Hurricane Cleo in the Gulf Stream. They were faced with 50ft seas and 85-knot winds and survived.

He went on to sail over 300,000 ocean miles, 20 Newport to Bermuda races on eleven different yachts, and three different War Babys. He won line honours and records in The Middle Sea Race in the twelve metre ex American Eagle and Marion Bermuda Race in the ex Tenacious along with trophies in Cowes Week, the SORC and many other events.

Warren knew and made many enduring friendships with yachtsmen from all over the world from great designers such as Olin Stephens and German Frers to Australian boat pros of the 1970s. He promoted youth sailing onboard his boats and was a master of heavy weather sailing. He was a member of the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, the Cruising Club of America, the Storm Trysail Club and many other institutions and clubs in sailing.

Warren was awarded the Cruising Club of America's prestigious Blue Water Medal for his greatest achievement for sailing his S&S 61' (ex Tenacious / Dora 4) to the Arctic then down the Atlantic to South Georgia, the Chilean fjords, Antarctica and eventually around the World. In his last decade of sailing the same War Baby, he participated in the Classic Boat Series of the Mediterranean and was the overall winner of that series in 2003.

Warren Brown was a highly competitive sailor and yachtsman, an explorer and adventurer who will be dearly remembered and sadly missed by his cremates, his country and his club. -- Paul Doughty, friend and crew

Industry News
Allspars is changing its name to Technical Marine Supplies to better keep with its offering following the expansion of its marine distribution side.

Technical Marine Supplies is the UK distributor for Anchor Buddy, Aquaseal, Armor-X, Colligo, D-Splicer, Dr Sails, Dynad Hydromax 150, Hamma, Karver, LanoProtect, Mantagua LED Lights, Marlow and PROtect Tapes, among others. The company is also the main UK agent for BSI, Navtec, Tylaska, Selden Spars and Spinlock hardware.

www.boatingbusiness.com

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Oyster Yachts will be adding new jobs following the announcement of a new build for a 115ft yacht. It will be the largest the company has ever built in the UK.

Suzy Lynch, general manager of Oyster Yachts Wroxham, [said] that the workforce at the former Landamores yard had risen from 70 when Oyster acquired it three years ago to about 180 today. The company completed a £500,000 extension earlier this year. It increased the number of bays from seven to nine. There are plans to increase the build bays to 14.

Lynch said by the end of this year, Oyster's turnover will be about £45m. The order book was 85pc full for 2015, and the company has already reached the 35% mark for 2016.

The expansion would create 40 new jobs.

plus.ibinews.com

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Swiss watchmaker Albert Riele has become the Alpari World Match Racing Tour's first ever Official Watch Partner. The brand joins the family of World Tour partners including title sponsor Alpari UK, official clothing partner Pelle P and official jeweller & silversmiths partner Garrard.

For each year of the agreement, Albert Riele will produce a bespoke limited edition timepiece for the Alpari World Match Racing Tour that will also be presented to each member of the World Championship team at the end of the season.

Founded in 1881 in Switzerland, the Albert Riele brand has had a long heritage in creating high quality timepieces. In 2013, Albert Riele was acquired by a group of investors from Poland and has since been re-launched with a brand new range forming its Premiere, Concerto and Gala collections.

www.wmrt.com

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Dominion Marine Media (DMM), the division of Dominion Enterprises that operates YachtWorld, Boat Trader, boats.com and Cosas de Barcos, has introduced a suite of social media management services that make social media for marine businesses faster, easier and more effective.

With the expertise and guidance of Social Media Manager Lauren de Vlaming, DMM developed the services after hearing frustration from dealers, brokers and other marine businesses — all of whom see the value in having a social strategy but often lack the resources to devote to it.

"As I talked with boat dealers and brokers at conferences, I would frequently hear about two common roadblocks," de Vlaming said. "'One, I don't have time to manage social media.' Or two, 'I don't know what to post.' So we designed a service to alleviate those problems."

DMM's social offering has three service levels - Social DIY, Social Pro and Social Elite - designed to fit each business' unique needs.

Contact Lauren de Vlaming at 757-351-8194 or lauren.devlaming@dominionmarinemedia.com

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Plans are now well advanced for the development of a new marina in East Cowes, UK. This marina is part of a major development of the East Cowes waterfront that will include upgraded ferry facilities and housing as well as the 400 berth marina. Called the Solent Gateways, this development project is designed to re-generate the centre of East Cowes to bring much needed employment to the area and to upgrade the yachting facilities in the harbour.

This development project comes as the new East Cowes breakwater project that will give much needed improved protection to this major yachting harbour nears completion. The breakwater extends from the main entrance channel on the west side to a point close to the east shore where a new entrance channel will be located. The proposed marina will extend out from the East Cowes shore close to the old hovercraft building which has the world's largest union jack painted on its doors. It is expected that this iconic building will be developed as a marine service centre.

plus.ibinews.com

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Details

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The Last Word
We forge the chains we wear in life. -- Charles Dickens

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