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 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

New Broom At World Sailing
At the 2016 World Sailing General Assembly meeting in Barcelona today, Denmark's Kim Andersen has defeated Carlo Croce in the second round of Presidential ballot, after Paul Henderson was defeated in the first round.

After an intensive week of discussion amongst the Member National Authorities (MNA's) gathered at the Renaissance Hotel in Barcelona, there was an obvious level of dissatisfaction with the lack of progress since 2012 under the leadership of President Carlo Croce.

Mounting a strong bid to take over the leadership of Sailing's peak body Andersen received strong support from outside Europe, in Africa, the Asia Pacific and the Americas and split the vote in Europe to take an historic victory.

Paul Henderson, the 1994-2004 President, now 81 years old had no serious expectations of victory, he was in fact standing out of frustration with the inability to get answers on a range of issues from the current leadership. He was eliminated after the first round of voting, after securing just twelve votes.

In that round Andersen led Croce 44 to 43, then in the second round most of Henderson anti-Croce votes went to the Dane and Andersen won 53 to 46.

As we reported during the week, the tide appeared to be running hard against the Italian buoy in recent times and it is a sad day for Croce, the first incumbent President to be defeated in a ballot in the history of the organisation.

There is no doubt that Croce, like his father before him, gave his all for sailing. Many observers wished he had withdrawn from the election in favour of Andersen, rather than suffer harsh judgement from the General Assembly.

Then came the Vice-Presidential election with a strong field of 15 candidates.

The Vice Presidents elected were Jan Dawson (NZL), Anna Sanchez (ESP), Nadine Stegenwalner (GER), Gary Jobson (USA), W Scott Perry (URU), Quanhai Li (CHN), Torben Grael (BRA).

A clean sweep for the three women, always likely as each of the 99 MNA's present had to vote for at least two of them, Gary Jobson and Scott Perry, the two standouts, stand-up players from the old board have successfully recontested along with Quanhai Li who had strong Asian support and they are joined by Olympic icon Torben Grael.

Newly elected President Kim Andersen said to this scribe today:

"When I decided to put my name forward as the World Sailing President, I did this because I was inspired to do more for our great sport. Because I believe that we can do more.

"Today showed that World Sailing and our MNAs are ready to move our sport forward and I am ready to take on the responsibility of ensuring our sport continues to succeed.

"This is a great day for World Sailing. Today we are a united family, I have been talking to MNAs all week and I want to make sure that this dialogue continues.

"We need to ensure that our federations are equipped with the right tools to succeed, what works in one country many not work in another. We cannot copy and paste success, we need tailored plans and the only way to do this is to speak with our MNAs. I want to involve everyone in making sailing stronger." -- Rob Kothe, founder and former Managing Editor and Publisher of the Sail-World.com network

One Big Week In
One week after last Sunday's start of the eighth Vendee Globe solo race around the world, the British skipper Alex Thomson leads the 29-boat fleet towards a complicated, sticky Doldrums passage.

Thomson wriggled Hugo Boss through between the Cape Verde Islands of Santo Antao and Sao Vicente during Saturday evening in order to maintain his fast, making gybe southwards. "It's a good win for me," said Thomson this afternoon, "I am surprised no one else came with me."

At the same time, long-time leader Armel Le Cleac'h had to gybe West, to avoid the worst of the wind shadow generated by the high ground of Santo Antao, giving away time and distance to the British skipper. With two deft, well-timed gybes, Thomson emerged into an accelerated breeze with a lead of 17 miles.

By the middle of this Sunday afternoon Hugo Boss was 35 miles ahead of second placed Vincent Riou (PRB).

The radical Hugo Boss has proven quickest over recent days but the southwards descent towards the Doldrums is expected to see some compression as the leaders arrive first into lighter winds. Weather files suggested more even NE'ly winds of 10-12kts for the leaders, the chasing pack still holding onto winds of 15-18kts.

But there was no sign of a Sunday afternoon slowdown on the 'Rosbif Rocket'. Thomson was still polled at 22.5kts. He did report a mechanical problem, water ingress to his engine, which would ultimately have compromised his ability to make power.

But after an afternoon spent up to his bits in engine oil, Thomson had the engine running and was relishing a refreshing shower.

Top ten on November 13 2200 French time
1. Alex Thomson, Hugo Boss
2. Vincent Riou, PRB, 31.8 nm to leader
3. Sebastien Josse, Edmond de Rothschild, 32.8
4. Armel Le Cleac'h, Banque Populaire VIII, 40.4
5. Jeremie Beyou, Maitre CoQ, 63.9
6. Morgan Lagraviere, Safran, 82.2
7. Paul Meilhat, SMA, 98.1
8. Yann Elies, Queguiner - Leucemie Espoir, 185.5
9. Thomas Ruyant, Le Souffle du Nord pour le Projet Imagine, 235.3
10. Jean Le Cam, Finistere Mer Vent, 237.3

vendeeglobe.fr

Quantum Key West Race Week Announces Mobile Marine Services Registration
Key West Organizers for the Storm Trysail Club's Quantum Key West Race Week announce that Coffin Marine Services will provide mobile marina services at the Truman Waterfront Property for the 30th anniversary regatta, scheduled January 15-20, 2017.

Quantum Key West Race Week is attracting many trailerable one-designs as well as grand-prix racers. Coffin Marine will provide crane services for launching and hauling and storage facilities for trailers and containers at the Truman Waterfront Property. Coffin Marine also will manage 180 feet of temporary floating docks where boats may tie up during the launching and hauling processes.

Coffin Marine will provide a 40-ton crane for launching and hauling. Storage at the Truman Waterfront Property is available January 3-22, 2017, and the mobile marine services will be available January 9-22, 2017. Advance registration is required for use of the services. More information on registration and costs may be found at Quantum Key West Race Week website/Logistics/Truman Waterfront Property.

The next entry deadline for Quantum Key West Race Week occurs on December 1 when entry fees increase between $4 and $5 per foot, depending on a boat's length overall. It's the final rate increase, but any entry received after December 30 will incur an additional surcharge.

keywestraceweek.com

Battles At The Top
Photo by Stefano Gattni / YCM. Click on image for photo gallery.

4th Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series Monaco: An Indian summer welcomed the 350 sailors from ten nationalities competing in the 4th Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series, organised by the Yacht Club de Monaco with technical clothing manufacturer, SLAM.

A Mistral veering to a southerly beneath sunny skies greeted the 60 boats divided into three classes for three days, a total of 22 Melges 20s, 35 J/70s and four GC32s For the latter it was the first time the fully foiling catamarans had made the trip to the Principality, invited by Pierre Casiraghi, Malizia helmsman and Yacht Club de Monaco Vice-President: "After our first season on the GC32 circuit, I really wanted to bring these new generation cats to Monaco who stole the show in the Principality."

GC32: foils take centre stage
The first day qualifiers in the fleet race format was won by Malizia with Pierre Casiraghi at the helm, after an exemplary start and having dominated three sides of the course. Despite dropping speed on the downwind leg, the locals anticipated to perfection a gust of wind to win the final race just 1.5 metres ahead of their opponents.

A match race contest followed, the first time that Pierre Casiraghi and his team have competed in this format. Modelled on that of the America's Cup, it puts the emphasis squarely on tactics and control, and is ideally suited to these speed machines.

Twitchy and quick, the GC32s react to the slightest breeze and it can be easy to make up lost ground. |In the one-on-one contest Realteam led by Jerome Clerc played their cards right to win the finale against Sebastien Rogues (Team Engie) with Flavio Marazzi (Armin Storm Sailing Team) beating Pierre Casiraghi (Malizia).

J/70: Monegasques dominate at home
Not far from the catamarans, the Melges 20s and J/70s were champing at the bit with 57 teams lined up on the start, Brazilians, Turks, Russians, Italians, Norwegians, Austrians, Germans and French having made the trip.

In the Yacht Club de Monaco's flagship J/70 class, numbering no less than17 boats among members, the level rose another two notches, with the arrival of experienced teams like the Turk Emir Icgoren (Ameera Jet) and Vincenzo Onorato (Mascalzone Latino).

Melges 20: Valentin Zavadnikov tops the leader board
The second stage of the 4th Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series was won by Valentin Zavadnikov (Synergy), the man behind this series of one-design regattas now into its fourth season.

After four races the YCM member pocketed the trophy having been 6th in Act 1. The Polish team led by Krzysztof Krempec (Mag Tiny) was 2nd with the Russian Alexander Novoselov (Victor) completing the podium.

All three fleets are already signed up for the next Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series regatta, from 9-11 December when the spectacular one-design M32 catamarans join the fleet.

Final overall ranking:

GC32 (Match Race rankings)
1. Jerome Clerc (Realteam), SUI
2. Sebastien Rogues (Team Engie), FRA
3. Flavio Marazzi (Armin Storm Sailing Team), SUI
4. Pierre Casiraghi (Malizia), MON

J/70 (after 4 races)
1. Ludovico Fassitelli (Junda-Banca del Sempione), MON, 7 points
2. Valeriya Kovalenko (Arttube), RUS, 11
3. Emir Icgoren (Ameera Jet), TUR, 17

Melges 20 (after 4 races)
1. Valentin Zavadnikov (Synergy), MON, 17
2. Krzysztof Krempec (Mag Tiny), POL, 20
3. Alexander Novoselov (Victor), RUS, 21

Full results: www.ycm.org

New York Yacht Club Medal Awarded To Dennis Conner
Click on image to enlarge.

Dennis Conner America's Cup winner, Olympic medalist and sailing legend Dennis Conner was honored with the New York Yacht Club Medal on Thursday evening, November 10, at the Club's 44th Street Clubhouse in the heart of Manhattan.

The medal was first awarded in 1964 to the members of the Constellation America's Cup syndicate as an expression of the Club's appreciation. Since 1985, the flag officers of the New York Yacht Club have periodically awarded the New York Yacht Club Medal in recognition of achievements of particular merit or outstanding contributions to the Club or yachting in general.

"Dennis Conner has had more impact on sailing than any sailor in the world over the past four decades," said New York Yacht Club Commodore A. Rives Potts Jr., a former America's Cup shipmate of Conner. "For those of us fortunate enough to sail with Dennis, we are all better sailors because of our time on board with DC."

This represents just the 17th time the Club has awarded this medal. Previous honorees include legendary yacht designer Olin Stephens, America's Cup challenger Baron Marcel Bich and America's Cup winner and television commentator Gary Jobson.

nyyc.org

2016 RORC Season's Points Championship
RORC Yacht of the Year:
Teasing Machine, A13, Eric de Turckheim (FRA)

2016 RORC Season's Points Championship Winner:
Lisa, First 44.7, Nick & Suzi Jones (GBR)

Following a highly successful 2016 season, winners in The Royal Ocean Racing Club's (RORC) annual Season's Points Championship have been confirmed. The prizewinners will be awarded for their racing prowess during the annual RORC Dinner & Prize Giving ceremony to be held at the InterContinental Hotel, Hyde Park Corner, London on Saturday 19th November.

Ticket information for sailing's equivalent of the 'Oscars' and a truly memorable occasion.

The RORC Season's Points Championship is the largest and arguably most competitive offshore yacht series in the world. Starting almost a year ago with the RORC Transatlantic Race, it consisted of 14 races where over 300 yachts from 15 different nations raced over 6,500 miles. The modern version of the championship is far from domestic as it includes the RORC Transatlantic Race, RORC Caribbean 600, Volvo Round Ireland Yacht Race, the brand new Ile d'Ouessant Race and Rolex Middle Sea Race.

The season's cumulative results

A full list of class winners, including trophies, special prizes and awards is available as a pdf HERE

rorc.org

Sleek As Ever
Seahorse Umberto Felci's new Grand Soleil 58 design does a nice job delivering performance plus contemporary styling typical of a much larger yacht

The collaboration between Felci Yacht Design and Cantiere del Pardo has a long history. It is now 15 years since Umberto Felci designed the GS70, the Italian yard's custom flagship produced for a German customer. In 2002, in collaboration with Rolf Vrolijk, we also designed both the GS45 Cruiser and the successful GS44 Performance Cruiser, which kickstarted a string of similar designs that for many years dominated IMS racing, winning several European titles. After the GS45, in 2003 we designed the GS50, working with French designer Patrick Roseo.

So after so many years we were pleased to return to work with Cantiere del Pardo, this time with another great studio, Nauta Design. Our task involved the naval architecture of the new Grand Soleil 58 Performance, a fast-cruiser designed and built to the highest production standards.

Full story in the December issue of Seahorse: www.seahorsemagazine.com

18ft Skiffs NSW Championship - Race 3
Click on image for photo gallery.

Race 3 of the NSW Championship Sydney Harbour: The experienced crew of Jack Macartney, Mark Kennedy and Dave Ewings gave a brilliant performance of heavy weather sailing when they combined to bring Coopers 62-Rag & Famish Hotel home as winner of Race 3 of the NSW Championship on Sydney Harbour today.

A 25 to 30-knot Westerly wind pounded the fleet but the Coopers-Rag team were faultless, but for one very brief capsize during the hour long race.

With tired crews battling to complete the course behind them, The Rag team took the honours by a mammoth 19m33s from Asko Appliances (Marcus Ashley-Jones, Steve Thomas, Jeronimo Harrison).

The early race leader Smeg (Lee Knapton, Mike McKensey, Ricky Bridge) was a further 9m48s back in third place.

The only other boats able to complete the course were Yandoo (John Winning, Cam McDonald, Mike Kennedy) and defending NSW champion Thurlow Fisher Lawers (Michael Coxon, Trent Barnabas, Carter Jackson)

Smeg won the start and led to the windward mark off Kurraba Point.

The current JJ Giltinan (world) champion Smeg team then produced a brilliant downwind exhibition as they raced to the wing mark off Clark Island ahead of Coopers 62-Rag & Famish Hotel.

An unlikely capsize by Smeg near the mouth of Double Bay on the following windward leg allowed Coopers 62-Rag & Famish Hotel to grab the lead and leave Smeg to battle with Asko Appliances for the minor placings.

The race was more a battle of survival than tactics as several skiffs capsized many times in the tough conditions.

Race 4 of the NSW Championship will be sailed next Sunday. -- Frank Quealey Australian 18 Footers League

www.18footers.com.au/sailing

Letters To The Editor - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Letters are limited to 350 words. No personal attacks are permitted. We do require your name but your email address will not be published without your permission.

* From Don Wood : I have read with interest the current state of Olympic Classes in your articles and loss of keel boat one.

Surely the case for a keel boat class could not have been argued better , than by the Greek philosopher Plato:

"Physical excellence does not of itself produce a good mind and character: on the other hand, excellence of mind and character will make the best of the physique it is given." -- Plato, The Republic

Could we start a campaign to re-introduce the International 6M into the Olympics?

Many of your contributors hark back to the glory days of the 12's in the Americas Cup . A 6M with a crew of 5 would compare easily with many other Olympic team events.

6m's fit a container for shipping etc it would also bring back designers and builders into the competition.

Other Olympic sports using "equipment" do not restrict this to a one design , one maker .

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Raceboats Only 1996 Farr 30 One Design RHUMB PUNCH. 48,900 USD. Located in Califonia, MD, USA

In 2014, she received two new 90 percent carbon membrane main sails from Evolution Sails NZ. In 2015, her decks were painted with Awlgrip nonskid; all the performance bells and whistles were inlayed in an opposing color on deck. Also in 2015, a new Quantum Code 1.5s spinnaker was added to her inventory.

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2011 Reichel Pugh design. 45' Grand Prix racer. Lying UK. UK VAT paid. Sailing World's boat of the year 2011. Currently lying second overall in the RORC offshore series.

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See the RaceboatsOnly.com collection at seahorsemagazine.com/brokerage/

The Last Word
You know, Hobbes, some days even my lucky rocket ship underpants don't help. -- Calvin

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