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

Stop-Start Transatlantic Race
Comanche at the startline. Photo by Daniel Forster / NYYC. Click on image for photo gallery.

Comanche, Rambler 88, Phaedo3 and Paradox - the four fastest boats in the Transatlantic Race 2015 - are now in hot pursuit of the remainder of the fleet.

Overnight the four have made solid progress with the Lloyd Thornburg's MOD70 trimaran Phaedo 3 leading, having covered some 307 miles in the first 18 hours since starting. Jim and Kirsty Clark's 100' maxi Comanche was already 50 miles astern of the electric green tri, but was leading her smaller rival, George David's Rambler 88, by 20 miles with Peter Aschenbrenner's 66' trimaran, Paradox, a further 30 miles back. This has been in less than ideal conditions, VMG running and having to gybe frequently in a 13-15 knot westerly as they attempt to take advantage of favorable eddies in the Gulf Stream.

At present there is a depression to their east speeding away towards Europe, leaving a giant, windless area of high pressure in its wake.

At the front of the fleet a similar transition is occurring. Mariette of 1915 yesterday performed a horizon job on the fleet, with 1065 miles left to sail at 1300 UTC. By being further east she has held on longer to a departing depression as the boats behind her yesterday fell into light wind; her turn will come later today.

transatlanticrace.com

Tracker: yb.tl/transatlantic2015

Yellowbrick Tracking on tablet or smart phone - You must first download the YB Races app, then within the app, add the TR2015 race. There is no charge to follow this race.
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* Editor: Nearly 100 "Blogs from the Boats" on site, text and images from mid-Atlantic.

Tour Voile: Groupama Wins Coastal Race In Fecamp
After an amazing tacking battle at the bottom of the cliffs, Pierre Pennec and his crew onboard Groupama win the coastal race of Act 2 in front of CombiWest, and West Courtage Ecole Navale. Race leader Grandeur Nature Veranda finishes 4th and keeps the leadership.

It was a beautiful day on the water with champagne sailing conditions. But the fleet could have done with a bit more wind. The south-westerly breeze died off around midday and the sea breeze took a while to kick in. The start had to be delayed and the 28 boats finally crossed the start line at 14h42.

Tomorrow the fleet will compete in a series of Stadium Racing regattas, in stronger wind conditions.

www.tourvoile.fr

Hermione Sails Into New York Harbor
The last time a boat sailed into New York Harbor bearing the Marquis de Lafayette, the arrival touched off a frenzy that would put Beatlemania to shame.

The year was 1824, and some 50,000 people - roughly a third of New York's population - lined the streets for a glimpse of Lafayette, the "French founding father," who was visiting the United States as part of a 13-month triumphal tour of the nation he had helped liberate nearly a half-century earlier.

On Wednesday a replica of the Hermione, the three-masted, 32-gun frigate that carried Lafayette to America in 1780 with news of his king's military support for the Americans, docked at the South Street Seaport. More than two centuries later, the crowds were smaller but the scene was still clangorous. After passing Governors Island, the Hermione sent a round of cannon blasts echoing off the buildings of Lower Manhattan before gliding into port.

New York Times

*|YOUTUBE:[$vid=hAsjUUVuu6I, $max_width=500, $title=N, $border=N, $trim_border=N, $ratings=N, $views=N]|*

North Sails Technology: Powering The 2015 Transatlantic Race Fleet To Home
The last of the staggered starts for the 2015 Transatlantic Race on Sunday saw the final big four take to the track in Newport (RI, USA), all powered by the latest in North Sails 3Di technology. The much anticipated offshore showdown between Comanche and Rambler is expected to grab the headlines whilst the trimarans of Phaedo 3 and Paradox will be pushing for overall Line Honours. All four boats were sailing well over 20 knots for the first night as they chased down the front runners from the earlier starts. Although the weather forecast might mean a new record isn't on the cards, the competition is expected to remain fierce all the way to the Lizard Point (UK).

Throughout the 37-strong fleet, North Sails technology is the favoured option for the majority of boats, including entries such as Dorade, Lucky, Maximizer, Carina and the stunning classic 138-foot long gaff schooner Mariette of 1915, which currently leads the fleet at the halfway mark.

Follow the boats: yb.tl/transatlantic2015

To learn more about North Sails technology, please visit: www.northsails.com

Melges 24 World Championship
Middelfart, Denmark: No racing in Middelfart on the last day due to the lack of wind. It means that the Melges 24 World Championship ended up with twelve races and one discard, rewarding Chris Rast's EFG SUI684 as a new holder of the Melges Performance Sailboats Challenge Trophy and Tonu Toniste's Lenny EST790 as a holder for the Henri Samuel Trophy.

Final top ten:

1. EFG, Christopher Rast, SUI, 57 points
2. Altea, Andrea Racchelli, ITA, 110
3. Air Force One, Bora Gulari, USA, 138
4. Audi tron, Riccardo Simoneschi, ITA, 150
5. Gill Race Team, Carveth Geoff, GBR, 169
6. Lenny, Tonu Toniste, EST, 188
7. Baghdad, Kristian Nergaard, NOR, 188
8. Itsi-Bitsi, Michael Hestbaek, DEN, 190
9. Baghdad 2, Kristoffer Spone, NOR, 207
10. Maidollis, Carlo Fracassoli, ITA, 214

www.melges24worlds15.dk

Ondrej Teply Wraps Up Finn Junior World Title
Ondrej Teply (CZE) has won the 2015 Junior Finn World Championship after a tense and exciting final day in Valencia. Nenad Bugarin (CRO) placed one higher than last year to take the silver while Lars Johan Brodtkorb (NOR) had a great final day to move up one place and take the bronze.

While the wind this week was never as strong as expected, perhaps because of the high temperatures, the full series was completed after two races were sailed in a solid breeze on the final day.

The Finn Silver Cup at the Real Club Nautico de Valencia has brought together 30 sailors from 14 nations and three continents. It has been a true world title battle between some of the sailors who will be challenging for space on the starting line in Rio in 2016 and perhaps for medals in Tokyo in 2020. Several of these sailors are already pulling in top results at the senior events and it is very encouraging to see the level of dedication and sporting maturity in some so young. The front end of the Finn class will be in good hands for many years to come. -- Robert Deaves

Final top ten after 11 races (one discard)
1. Ondrej Teply, CZE, 40
2. Nenad Bugarin, CRO, 52
3. Lars Johan Brodtkorb, NOR, 55
4. Arkadiy Kistanov, RUS, 59
5. Stig Steinfurth, DEN, 65
6. Max Kohlhoff, GER, 78
7. Andre Hojen Christiansen, DEN, 80
8. Facundo Olezza, ARG, 84
9. Phillip Kasuske, GER, 87
10. Luke Miler, USA, 94

www.cyberaltura.com

French Anchorage Tax Removed
Fears of a new tax on boat anchorages in France have been withdrawn. The French Assembly supported the complete removal of the proposed tax yesterday.

Further to the major mobilization of the yachting industry, the government definitively waive the tax on the anchorage, on July 2nd, 2015.

The Senate had already voted for the abandonment of this tax last May, this decision has just been supported by the Assembly, engendering the abolition of the article 18 of the bill establishing this fee.

Initially, this law had to concern only Corsica before extending throughout France.

The Minister Marylise Lebranchu had committed to find another solution to prevent Bonifacio's sea bed from being damaged by the boats, while protecting the economy.

It isa good news, especially as at this day, the yachting industry represents 1.5 billion euros in France including 720 million in Provence Alpes Cote d'Azur. (stats July 2015).

European Committee for Professional Yachting:
www.ecpy.org

29er Europeans: World Class Competition At A World Class Venue
There's still time to enter to vie for the title of the 29er European Championship, to be sailed in Medemblik, Holland, July 17-23.

Entry is open until July 10.

Top skiff teams as well as many of the Youth World teams will be testing the waters in Holland.

Don't miss this great event!

Join the current entry list of 125 teams representing 19 nations from 4 continents on www.29ereuropeans.org

Stunning Day To Kick Off 49erFX Europeans In Porto
The sun rose, sailors rigged, and the 2015 49er & 49erFX European Championship started on time under blue skies, light winds, and fair swell. Two fleet of the worlds best skiff sailors took to the water to compete in the 49erFX, with the men's 49er scheduled to start tomorrow.

This championship is the second most important event of the year behind the World Championship, and decides much in the way of funding, team selection, and bragging rights.

The first races had lighter wind with teams double trapezing but surging in and out with the ocean swell, searching for power. As the sea breeze built so did the power and teams scored themselves some wild rides. It was an interesting combination of shifty and side dominated racing.

Having the best of the day was the Netherlands Annemiek Bekkering and Annette Duetz.

The 49erFX schedule is Qualifying July 6-8, Gold Fleet 9-11 and medal race also on 11th.

The 49er schedule is Qualifying July 7-9, Gold Fleet 10-12 and medal race also on 12th.

49er.org/event/2015-european-championship/

400 Boats & 3,000 Sailors
Next week sees the mid-season peak of the sailing summer, with the four day Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta 2015 in Dublin Bay from Thursday July 9th to Sunday July 12th. In a way it is an amalgamation of all that has has already occurred in this year's season, together with new elements to make it a unique sailfest which celebrates the fact that the citizens of Ireland's capital city and their guests can be conveniently sailing and racing within a very short distance of the heart of town. W M Nixon sets the scene...

In the dozen or so years since its inception, the biennial Volvo Dun Laoghaire Regatta has settled itself firmly into the sailing scene as an exceptionally varied event in terms of the boats and classes taking part. There are five regular cruiser-racer classes, plus an offshore division, fourteen one design keelboat classes, and nine dinghy classes. And although there are contenders from Ireland's north coast and from the Cork area and south coast too, together with one gallant entry from Galway, it is essentially an Irish Sea Sailfest, though with a remarkably strong Scottish presence.

WM Nixon's full editorial in Afloat:

afloat.ie/blogs/

Dream Start
We did it! That was the consensus among owners as they had their first sight of 12 TP52s berthed in front of the Veles e Vents building in Valencia. Nine brand new TP52s and all 12 boats optimised to the latest class rule.

To order any racing yacht is a big step and a very personal one. To share this step with eight others at this size of boat is unique. On the one hand, it reduces the chance that for a short while at least you have the best boat within the group; on the other hand, with so much effort and talent all working on improving these boats you know that as a group you make steps that are near impossible to achieve building a pure one-off. As the results history of the TP52 shows.

Wherever they go and wherever they race after their class racing is done, under whatever rating rule, these boats do well. We then are talking about racing boats that are on average four years old when starting their second life. When most one-offs are past their peak and no longer considered competitive. -- Rob Weiland

Full article in the August issue of Seahorse:
www.seahorsemagazine.com

Team Japan Moving Operations To Bermuda
The Japanese America's Cup Challenger, SoftBank Team Japan (Team Japan), representing the Kansai Yacht Club of Japan is moving its operations to Bermuda and setting up its team base in the South Basin area of the Royal Naval Dockyard along with other teams.

Team Japan will be relocating up to 40 staff members with the first arriving by September 2015. That number will grow as the team base and facilities become ready for operations later this year. Team Japan has indicated that it intends to hire Bermudians in a number of roles, including administration, finance and security, among others.

www.todayinbermuda.com

Softbank Team Japan Sets Line-Up For Portsmouth
SoftBank Team Japan has selected its crew for the Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series event in Portsmouth later this month.

Skipper Dean Barker and wing-trimmer/tactician Chris Draper will be joined by trimmer Jeremy "Jero" Lomas, grinder Derek Saward and bowman Kazuhiko "Fuku" Sofuku at the first event of the new America's Cup cycle.

With the team having limited opportunity to train together, Draper and Fuku recently competed in the Extreme Sailing Series in Cardiff on 40-foot catamarans.

The team has also added Tyson Lamond and Adrian Gray to its shore team.

"Tyson and Adrian will be a great boost to our team " Draper said. "We're grateful that ORACLE TEAM USA will provide a few other shore crew for us in Portsmouth as we continue to build out our team.

"All of us have been very busy making plans for moving the team to Bermuda later this year and setting up our base, ready to be fully operational by the end of the year. And we have a training camp in Japan planned in early October to identify top young Japanese sailors who could help and be a part of the team.

www.americascup.com

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The Last Word
There are a terrible lot of lies going about the world, and the worst of it is that half of them are true. -- Winston Churchill

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