A classic final day at the 2015 Gul Fireball World Championship at Pwllheli SC is in the offing after Gillard and Anderton finished ahead of overall leaders Birrell and Brearey in both races Thursday
After a healthy rain delay, action is ON in Gothenburg!
A few nice frames from Gilles Martin Raget!
Following the record-breaking success of “Bart’s Bash”, the global sailing event that took place in September 2014 in aid of the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation (ASSF) and the success of the first-ever “Virtual Sailing World Championship” which took place in May 2015 on SailX.com, we are proud to announce an exciting collaboration between ASSF and SailX to run a new virtual fleet racing series. This new event is to be called “Bart’s Virtual Sailing Championship”.
Bart’s Virtual Sailing Championship is a six “Act” championship that will take place over six months of the Northern Hemisphere winter. Act 1 will take place from Sept. 1-3. Entry is free and open for the duration of the Championship. There is the opportunity to make a voluntary donation to the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation if you’re inspired.
ASSF CEO, Richard Percy commented saying “The aim of this championship is to provide sailors, clubs and coaches with an activity that will keep them active and engaged in sailing, and even improving their skills, over the sport’s (Northern Hemisphere) off-season. We see this as innovative way of continuing the great work done by Bart’s Bash in raising awareness of, and lowering entry barriers to, the sport of sailing.”
Act 1 (of 6) of Bart’s Virtual Sailing Championship will be supporting this year’s Bart’s Bash, the World’s Largest Sailing Event, which takes place September 20 at clubs all over the world. The parties’ joint ambition is to encourage as many sailors and non-sailors to participate in Bart’s Bash and to also make sailors aware how much virtual sailing can actually improve real life sailing.
First time racers will be encouraged to sign up on SailX and to use the ‘Learn to Sail’ and ‘Prepare to Race’ tools, such as the extensive help and support in their training for the Bash (e.g. pressing ‘H’ for help tips, ‘M’ to ask questions, etc). Additionally clubs and club coaches will be encouraged to sign up in order to engage members in some inter-club rivalry and to keep them having fun and learning over the winter months.
SailX Founder, Amando Estela commented saying “We are extremely proud to be chosen by the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation to run this event. We 100% share their belief that there is something special about sailing (and sailors) in that it can have a huge positive impact on individuals, particularly kids. This belief has guided SailX development over the years and we look forward to helping them make a difference.”
Rome, Italy (August 27, 2015) – Waking up to the gloom of an unexceptional forecast for Civitavecchia today, it was with great delight that the Trofeo di Roma, the fourth event on the Bullitt GC32 Racing Tour, got off to flying start, quite literally. The wind gods obliged allowing racing off the Italian seaside resort, situated on the outskirts of Rome, not only to get underway on time, but, all six scheduled races successfully to be sailed too. After six races, Spindrift Racing leads with 11 points. Click headline for full story.
Britain’s Chris Taylor and Sam Batten took a bronze in the 49er class at the Junior Worlds in Flensburg, Germany
In an interview from Seahorse magazine, three generations of the Melges family – Buddy, son Harry III, and Harry’s 14-year old son Harry IV – share their secrets on life, sailing and scow boats…
You guys do a lot of different sports, iceboating, ski racing, motorcross, duck shooting… In terms of preparation is there a common thread?
Harry Melges III: Whatever the sport, make sure your equipment is ready to go. So if it’s skis proper tuning and waxing. On a boat a well-polished hull, good sails and being comfortable with your tune. After that it’s a lot of practice time to get your confidence level up to a point where you’re confident that you can win.
Buddy Melges: And your technical preparation has a big effect on your ‘head’.
Harry Melges IV: Yeh, just keep doing the important stuff over and over again and perfect what you’re doing.
When you are competing against other people your age, what gives you that ‘edge’?
Harry Melges III: Well I like to think that I feel the boat better than other people. I can always predict what the boat’s going to do using the angle of heel and stuff… But I’m still working on that! It’s getting a lot better though.
There’s some secret sauce with Buddy when it comes to angle of heel, yet so many sailors around the world just don’t get that. Buddy you’re really the author of the concept… can you talk about that and how it has translated through your family?
Buddy Melges: Well, the angle of heel thing comes from the scow family of hull shapes. A scow’s got a flat bottom, so it’s two boats in one but you’re only going to use one of them at a time. So now, how much heel do we put into the boat. Also you have to tie that together so that the bilge board is absolutely vertical. Now you take a centreboard boat, and they start to heel too much and they’re immediately going to lose lateral resistance from their plates. Take the bilge boards now and they’re starting to bite at the maximum; and to put water on the deck is ok downwind because we want to slip that way anyway and the heel is going to decrease the wetted surface. Now you take this to any boat, Star boat, America’s Cup boat and all that stuff, you get that feel more quickly by using the scow system of using heel to find the maximum performance you’re going to achieve.
Malcolm Gladwell wrote the popular book Outliers, for which he did his homework and concluded that you’re not able to be an expert at anything until you’ve put about 10,000 hours minimum into doing it. He talked about the Beatles and before they were even big they spent 10,000 hours playing in dive bars in Germany and Liverpool. So talk about practice…
Harry Melges IV: Well during the summer pretty much every day I go sailing with my friends. Sailing by yourself is a little more boring but it can be more serious too. With your friends you can also talk through stuff.
So let’s try to figure out how many thousands of hours each generation has put in at the tiller…
Harry Melges IV: I have absolutely no idea!
Harry Melges III: For sure, way way more than 1,000. I don’t know if it would be close to 10,000. That’s a lot of hours if you do the math. Actually I think the big thing with practice is that you have to love it enough to want to do it enough. And you’ve got to put some variety in it so it’s not mundane. It’s the same with ski racing as it is for sailing. But sailing you’ve got a lot of different great boats to sail. All the scow boats that we build, our new Melges 14, Harry grew up sailing the Bic O’Pen. Now he’s playing around with a Moth and an A Class catamaran. There’s lot of variety in this sport which is fun but it also improves your skills across the board. I believe that if you improve in one boat you also get that much better in another boat.
Buddy Melges: Confidence, confidence, confidence. When you’ve got confidence you win. When you haven’t you get beat.
What’s your favourite boat?
Harry Melges IV: The Moths are a lot of fun. It’s hard to keep up with the boat sometimes. But these days the E Scow is my favourite to sail all round.
Harry Melges III: The E scow is an awesome boat. But I’ve done a lot of Melges 17 sailing with Harry and my daughter Munro now as well. For me, probably the most fun sailing I do is with my kids. The 17 really teaches the kids how to sail; it’s a high performance, apparent wind masthead A sail boat. So to go from the 17 to the E Scow is a piece of cake – Harry actually felt the E Scow was a little easier than the 17. But the 17 creates great drivers.
Buddy Melges: As I said, the scow type of boat does wonders. It drums the angle of heel into you and when you’ve got that down then whole horizons open up. You don’t have to be looking at the numbers up and down and stuff like that. In the America’s Cup we got Bill Koch to buy a scow because we wanted him to become sensitized to the angle of heel so he wouldn’t have to look at the numbers so much and could keep the boat driving in a nice straight line. Early on his track was pretty wide and after sailing the scow it got narrower and narrower. Not only that but the speed wasn’t going up and down like a yoyo either. So there’s a lot to say about being able to feel the boat. Find the angle for every boat you’re going to sail. Now you can present her to Mother Nature and you know before she gets there what’s going to happen. As far as I know, there is no compass yet nor other instrument that tells you what’s going to happen 100yd in front of your boat.
You mentioned confidence. What’s the secret to gaining confidence?
Buddy Melges: Time in the boat is where you get your confidence. You can’t be an Olympic skier going down the hill twice before the event. So you’ve got to do your homework, build your foundation, you can’t have a George Washington Memorial type of tall thin structure, you’ve got to have a nice broad base like a Pyramid. Then you can always fall back on that knowledge. Harry IV will find out, Harry III already knows.
So some lessons learnt listening to dad and Grandpa!
Harry Melges IV: Yeah, every time.
So not yet 10,000 hours but already plenty of confidence. Tell us about going to the E Scow Nationals …
Harry Melges IV: To be honest, going to the Nationals I was just happy to sail the boat where my whole crew was my family… We also had a great regatta. Then we went into the Blue Chip regatta and now I knew I could sail the boat, like quite well I guess.
It was pretty breezy with some good guys like Brian Porter falling over…
Harry Melges IV: That’s what all the Moth sailing, 14 sailing, 17 sailing is about. You get such a good feel for when the puffs are going to hit and what to do, you can just anticipate much better. Your head’s out the boat and you see it coming.
You mentioned the new Melges 14, what’s the goal with that platform?
Harry Melges III: The goal is to be an international one design. Hopefully one day an Olympic class boat. It’s the latest hull design from Reichel-Pugh, with a nice carbon rig and a square top main. It’s a very active sailplan and a really fast fun boat to sail. I think it’s time for something fresh and it’s got a lot of potential
So the son continues in Dad’s footsteps…
Buddy Melges: (Laughing) Footsteps! He passed me long ago. He’s creating his own footsteps. There’s no tracks he’s following. Maybe on a turkey hunt, or maybe a duck hunt, but when it comes to water I think he’s got his own track. He’s not following anybody’s.
What about you Harry, an AC campaign someday or an Olympic campaign…
Harry Melges III: No. I just don’t have the desire. My focus is on our business here and the kids…
Buddy Melges: There’s something to add to what Harry just said. He’ll probably get more thrill out of supplying a boat to somebody here at Cedar Lake Wisconsin and they go out and win when they haven’t won before. And you know we always pride ourselves on helping the customer. They have tuning pamphlets and things like that. Nowadays you don’t just take the boat and go and splash it. You go through everything, you set it up according to the book and the rest is up to you. After that the time in the ship comes out in the silverware.
So back to the business, who’s doing what here these days?
Harry Melges III: Well, Buddy is pretty much retired now. He has his toyshop across town where he gets to work on his iceboat projects. Andy Burdick is now our president. He runs the office and drives sales. I spend most of my time down in the shop, hands on helping to build boats. Then we have Andrew Low, production manager. The Melges 20, 24 and 32 are strong classes and we continue to support those. And all of our scow classes continue to be strong. The last couple of years sales have been really solid in those classes. This year, for example, we have already sold 19 E boats. The 14 is a new project for us and that will soon start to increase in volume. Its good!
It’s a venerable brand and a lot of people around the world respect what this name means. And to have a footprint like that from Zenda Town Wisconsin is something that takes a lot of effort and hard work and discipline. Talk a little about your plans for marketing the new boats…
Harry Melges III: With the 14 we’ll set up dealers around the world plus probably a builder in Europe and a builder in Asia. I think that boat will sell itself pretty quickly. The key is to get it in as many peoples hand as possible. Start throwing regattas and parties (laughs).
Buddy Melges: Build a strong organisation within the class so people can’t fuss with stuff. Don’t get into the situation that some classes are experiencing around the world, where people dick when they shouldn’t be dicking and oughta be driving.
Strict one design is a good recipe for success, plus its owner-driver too eh!
Buddy Melges: True story.
Here you go, I’ve got three kids, 3, 4 and 7 years old. What advice do you have for guys that age so they fall love with sailing, what might a 7 year old or a 4 year old find cool?
Harry Melges IV: For me it’s about keeping up the attention by having fun all the time. Then as you go on it will get more complicated with all the boathandling and tactics and everything like that. And then there’s looking up to someone. I’ve obviously got two great people to look up to in sailing…
Switching to the other end of the generations here, I’d love to understand Buddy what you think would be the best advice that you’ve been able to pass on to your boys… Not just about sailing but also about life.
Buddy Melges: As I look at my own history in sailing, it’s taken me all around the world, I’ve met all sorts of people from all walks of life. There’s a lot of people that are not millionaires that sail boats pretty darned well. So to enjoy people from all over the world and then be able to present a product to them as good as these boats are. That to me is the greatest thing that I can take to the box.
What my father started, what I brought along a little bit. We had some trouble with fires around here, in 1971, when a disgruntled employee had too many matches in his pocket. We got through that, then we transferred into fibreglass from wood construction. And now what Harry has done along with Andrew in building the line here in Zenda with the different class boats and raising performance levels. They got together and went for it; the best example is when Harry purchased our scow competitor Johnson Boatworks and a lot of people thought that quality would go back down. But in this case it turned around and quality went up to even higher standards than what had been seen before. I look back now and that is the biggest achievement that Harry has had so far within the company. To build a quality product and to build a workforce that can deliver that quality day in and day out. That’s tough, but he’s doing it.
What about the evolution of the E scow, you always seem to come out with something a little better each year?
Harry Melges III: Yeah, we’re always trying to make improvements wherever we can. The E scow changed a lot with the A sail and bowsprit; that gave us the excuse to make a new deck mould. But you can still buy an older boat, do some upgrades and you’ll be competitive.
What about bigger boats?
Harry Melges III: We’ve kicked around a 40-footer for a while with Frederico of Melges Itlay. So far it’s just been talk but there is a lot of owner pressure to do it…
Is that about comfort level?
Harry Melges III: Every new class is a little uncomfortable! There’s lot of work and risk involved.
What about foiling?
Harry Melges IV: It’s really cool. Sailing the Moth has given me more of a handle on sailing boats with accentuated sensitivity. But I enjoy the non-foiling boats just as much.
Harry Melges IV: In the Moth you can’t move your body much or you slow down. Make a big mistake there and the boat will cartwheel. So focus. Going from there to the E Scow when it’s windy and shifty that experience really helps.
Harry Melges III: The Cup in foilers is cool to watch. Foiling is fun, it’s fun to do but it’s a different kind of racing. Cats will eventually all be foiling, why wouldn’t they? Racing something like a Moth is great but it’s not easy… for high end guys only. And tactics are more like an iceboat race. There’s still a huge need for regular dinghy racing, that’ll never go away.
Buddy Melges: With the foils the Cup’s a track race now. One guy forcing another into a mistake, I don’t think you’ll see much of that. The AC was probably the forerunner to match racing as we know it now. The AC now is a whole different beast. There used to be different ways to get to the line first; when was the last time you saw ten tacks on the windward leg of an AC race?
So tactics are out the window…
Buddy Melges: Speed, that’s what it’s all about now. Last time the Kiwis had it in the bag then the USA learnt how to foil upwind and through manouvers… Maybe my age has got me hooked on tactics and things like that which are more exciting from my point of view. I think the doers like the tactics but the folks up the shore, they’re all about, ‘Whoo, look at it go!’ It’s a bit like iceboating where we do six 10-mile races a day.
So is the new AC product closer to iceboating?
Buddy Melges: Sure, in iceboating the old talk was the harder you sheet the faster you go. A lot is the same. Upwind that’s true and downwind it’s true too. You go round the windward mark and usually you double your speed within 100m. The AC cats look much the same deal.
Fastest top speed you’ve each been at under sail?
Harry Melges III: They clocked us at 130mph here in the late ’80s.
What about iceboating and the next generation?
Harry Melges IV: The ice has been pretty poor the last few winters. But in the Moth I’ve seen maybe 25kt.
Harry Melges III: How about the scow?
Harry Melges IV: 22kt
What’s your goal in the scow for next year?
Harry Melges IV: To beat Brian Porter!
There’s some big stories in the scow fleets…
Buddy Melges: I remember sailing with DC [Dennis Conner]. I was on the jib, the rest of the crew was Melges family. Luck was rolling our way but the third race, it was honking, the jib came on too fast and we flipped her. We got the boat up and gradually recovered various crew who were floating away. Took a while but we still beat a few… Later the fun thing was Mr AC coming in to the finish on port with plenty of pressure. I look over and here comes this black one which I know will be a big lift. Tommy Schweitzer was rolling in on starboard and I look back at DC and there was nervousness all over his face… I told Dennis, “it’s ok were gonna get a big lift”, which we did and we won. To have DC go and do all the great things he’s done. That’s been fun to talk about together, at least in our backyard during cocktails.
Buddy, multiple world titles, Olympic medals, the America’s Cup, what’s been the most gratifying achievement.
Buddy Melges: Marrying Gloria. Gloria’s been the whole reason I got here. She supported me during Olympics, with all the training. The family was growing but she just hung in there and encouraged us.
Buddy Melges: Back then the Melges name was just getting out there; and when you travelled people always talked about these funny scow boats that we sail. Now, Harry is doing such a fantastic job since taking over; go back to when I was out playing with Bill Koch, he should have been in college but instead dropped out with his brother and they came back and put themselves through Zenda U. Now they have created a business that stands tall in all areas. I doubt they could have gotten any better education than at Zenda U. That just made Gloria and I the proudest people.
Another note and what changes would you like to see in Seahorse…
Buddy Melges: More scow coverage!!!
It’s been a pretty amazing relationship between our businesses…
Buddy Melges: Yip. I remember Peter [Harken] coming round with his first little black blocks and those little white balls. I put them in my boat, pulled the sheet and nearly went right out the back of the boat… everything was SO light. From that time forward we were together forever. One less appreciated thing about what Peter and Olaf did was to make everyone’s boats so user-friendly. Now the women could get back in the boats again. We had ladies sailing on boats in the 1940s then they disappeared; now they are sailing again.
Harry Melges IV: I listen to everything.
Harry Melges III: Jack Johnson, Train.
Buddy Melges: The Green Bay Packers, they play beautiful music every Sunday.
NOTE: This column was re-published with permission from Seahorse magazine (August 2015). Information about Seahorse can be found HERE.
BT Sport is the UK Live Host Broadcaster for the 2015 – 2017 America’s Cup. During the 2015 Gothenburg event they will show all racing action live on BT Sport
Published on Aug 27, 2015
“It’s a bit of a shot at redemption for us. . .We came here to win. We want to prove that we’re the number one team and we get a shot at it now,” says team strategist Tom Slingsby. Hear more of what he and skipper James Spithill have to say about practice and the upcoming races at the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series Gothenburg. Video by John von Seeburg & Mike Herbener / ORACLE TEAM USA #LVACWS
Trapani, Italy (August 27, 2015) – In stark contrast to full-on, breezy, physical conditions of the first day of Melges 32 World Championship racing, Day Two greeted competitors with light and dicey racing testing the mental toughness of the twenty-two boat fleet. With many teams looking to improve on their Day One performance, the lighter conditions provided the perfect arena almost guaranteed to shake-up the standings. Also similar to Day One, the course was heavily right-side favored despite PRO Anderson Reggio moving the course to the west to allow for a more square race track. Click headline for full report.
2015 American Windsurfing Tour – Competitors woke up this morning at El Faro Adventure Resort in Pacasmayo Peru
2015 Melges 32 World Championships – Race 4 images by Max Ranchi
From garage project to transforming the sailing industry:
It all started as a scribble on a school note pad for Roger Kitchen. After spending hundreds of hours on the water teaching kids to sail in boats that were slow, too small and tricky to sail, Roger thought there must be a better way.
Roger and son Chris, researched around the world for a boat that was simple to teach in but still fast and exciting. No one else seemed to have the answer, so in typical kiwi style they thought, bugger it, we’ll just build one ourselves. So the garage was cleared out and the help of a few experts enlisted (Tim Clissold of TC designs did the original design) and the rest is history.
The Weta trimaran is heralded by many in the industry as a breath of fresh air in the stagnant small boat sailing arena. Weta brings a burst of energy and excitement to sailing clubs, schools and boating families.
Today there are over 1000 Weta trimarans sailing the waters in 24 different countries around the world and the boat has been recognized by winning the Sailing World International Boat of the Year Award in 2010.
“We want Weta to be known as the boat that has transformed the dinghy sailing industry from slow and boring, to fast, easy and exhilarating fun.”
Weta are going all guns blazing to make people aware that there is a better way to learn to sail and to reignite a passion that you are never too young or too old to have fun sailing.
Roger’s dream for the future is there are kids of all ages, all around the world, scribbling pictures of the Weta on their school or office pads, as they daydream about the exhilarating experience of sailing a Weta.
The Severn Sailing Association, with Annapolis Yacht Club and the US Naval Academy, hosted the third annual Olivia’s Team Racing Invitational, August 22-23, 2015, in Collegiate 420s. The regatta was created in the memory of Olivia Constants, a sailor who tragically lost her life in a sailing accident at age 14. Her love of life, friends, fun and sailing inspired the Olivia Constants Foundation to create one of the most unique team racing regattas. Each skipper/crew was randomly placed on a different team for each race. Fifty-four teams participated in over 130 races in two days. Click headline for full story.
Have you ever taken a leap of faith? Left the safety of shore just for the chance – the hope – that one day you will look back and it will all be worth it? Begin the journey alongside the US Sailing Team Sperry at UNCHARTED WATERS, and watch the odyssey unfold. http://uncharted.sunbrella.com
Here’s a sneak peak at the full-length UNCHARTED WATERS documentary launching SPRING 2016.
For the rest of the videos in the Uncharted Waters series, click here.
Land Rover BAR’s Chief Meteorologist, Jessica Sweeney, gives some insight into what we can expect at the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series Gothenburg…
Bronze medal winning helmsman Erik Heil (GER) has been admitted to a German hospital following his return from the Pre-Olympic Test Regatta sailed out of the Marina da Gloria and Guanabara Bay.
Heil is suffering from severe inflammations on his legs and one hip. The inflammations started on the plane trip from Rio de Janerio, where the Pre-Olympic regatta finished last weekend and was hospitalized soon after getting off the plane. Currently Heil is being treated in the well known Charité hospital in Berlin. He is at home in between treatment sessions.
Trapani, Italy – After a brief one-hour delay, PRO Anderson Reggio sent teams to the North race course to initiate and complete the first three races of the 2015 Melges 32 World Championship series organized by B.Plan Sport & Events (BPSE) in cooperation with Melges Europe.
“The forecast for the day was very promising, so we planned to take advantage of the nice conditions and put one (a race) in the bank for later in the week,” commented Reggio.
With a strong northeasterly wind that pumped much more than
The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race preparations continued, as Unicef officially named its yacht in the Race Village.
Twelve identical 70-foot stripped down ocean racers are preparing to battle it out over an eleven month global series which starts from London this Sunday (30 August 2015). It’s the world’s largest matched fleet and it will be taking on the longest ocean race around the planet at more than 40,000 nautical miles.
The 2015-16 series is the tenth edition of the biennial Clipper Round the World Yacht Race. Multinational teams will take on the world’s toughest oceans in what has come to be regarded as one of the most challenging endurance events, with 14 races between six continents.
Apart from the twelve seasoned professional skippers, the teams comprise mainly of amateur competitors, many of them novices prior to their extensive pre-race training. The ‘Corinthian’ spirit of the grueling race has been made famous by its founder, the British yachting legend Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, who became the first person to sail solo, non-stop, around the world in 1968-9.
Teams have been making final preparations this week in central London’s only marina at St Katharine Docks next to Tower Bridge, which will mark Sunday’s departure on this marathon event. Weather patterns are being studied and tactics developed against a busy backdrop of maintenance, stocking up on provisions for the first month-long race to Rio, mixed with naming ceremonies and farewell celebrations.
Each team is around 60-strong, but there will only be a maximum of 24 per yacht at any one time, dropping to an average of 15 on some stages. Around ten to twelve crew will stay aboard for the full circumnavigation, the remainder joining for one or more of eight legs. The challenge for skippers is managing that changing dynamic while maximizing competitive performance.
Around 700 crew, representing 44 different nationalities, will participate in this edition, the biggest in the 19-year history of the event which started in 1996. This latest complement of competitors will bring the total number of new ocean racing sailors created by the Clipper Race to over 4,000 to mark its 20th anniversary next year when the fleet returns to London at the end of July.
There is clear apprehension ahead of this Sunday’s departure in a traditionally emotional farewell mixed with an adrenaline charged desire to get the racing started. The opening ceremony of the event will have a Rio festival feel ahead of a parade on the Thames with Tower Bridge opening to salute the fleet as it heads out to the start line.
Race 1 gets underway the following day away from the busy river traffic with a start off Southend Pier at 1230 BST (1130 UTC). The race to Rio is filled with navigational and environmental challenges from the confines of the English Channel and the potentially rough conditions of the Bay of Biscay to the frustrations of the Doldrums where wind can disappear between northern and southern hemisphere weather systems ahead of the final push to the finish in Rio de Janeiro.
Subsequent races take in South Africa, around Australia, including the infamous Boxing Day departure Sydney-Hobart race, Vietnam, China, USA coast-to-coast from Seattle to New York, Northern Ireland, Netherlands and back to London on 30 July 2016.
First results are in for the International Moth European Championships taking place in Bataviahaven, Holland with Chris Rashley going for double-tops
So how many more pictures like this and stories like this need to be seen before someone with some integrity, intelligence and balls pulls the plug on Olympic Sailing in this shit swamp? Move this event out of the bay and into the ocean, where at least there is less of a chance that untreated human waste will kill the sailors.
This is one of the biggest debacles ever seen in sailing. Exactly when is someone in authority going to do the right and only thing?
Two more races were completed at the Flying 15 World Championship on Wednesday setting Graham Vials and Chris Turner well on their way to a hat trick of championship titles
Sixth day of Pringles Kitesurf World Cup started with last rounds of Freestyle Qualifiers in difficult choppy conditions
Extreme Sailing Series- Organisers OC Sport and Series Partner Land Rover are officially inviting entries for 2016 event
America’s Cup action continues this week, as the fleet descends upon Gothenburg in Sweden for the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series, with racing from August 29-30.
“The Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series Gothenburg is an opportunity for the teams to put more points on the board that will count towards the penultimate racing in Bermuda in 2017,” said America’s Cup Event Authority CEO Russell Coutts.
“In the first event last month in Portsmouth, Ben Ainslie was clearly better than the rest and deserved to win. Peter Burling was also very impressive in his first start for Emirates Team New Zealand,” continued Coutts. “However, I’m sure the others will be looking to improve, none more so than Artemis which has a boat stacked with Olympic champions. They definitely have the talent and they will certainly want to put on a better performance in front of their home crowd in Gothenburg.”
The Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series leaderboard is as follows:
Land Rover BAR - 19 points
Emirates Team New Zealand - 18
ORACLE TEAM USA – 16
Groupama Team France – 13
Softbank Team Japan – 13
Artemis Racing – 11
The six teams and helmsman in the field for Gothenburg are:
Artemis Racing, Nathan Outteridge
Emirates Team New Zealand, Peter Burling
Groupama Team France, Franck Cammas
Land Rover BAR, Ben Ainslie
ORACLE TEAM USA, Jimmy Spithill
Softbank Team Japan, Dean Barker
Lay day at the Fireball Worlds in Wales yesterday. Up to now, six races were sailed, mostly a rough up to 20 kn wind and strong tide current conditions. It is already now evident, that the Medals will go to the UK, as the …
After the unplanned break in the program two days ago because of stormy conditions, two races were completed yesterday.
Lawrie Smith GBR and his team condolidated their first rank overall with the day ranks 2 and …
“The 2015 O’pen BIC European Championships was a great success, with 9 rounds of challenging racing in extremely varied conditions, with northerly and southerly thermals blowing in at vastly different strengths all three days of the competition. The constant factor was the excellent O’pen BIC fairplay spirit that was present throughout the championships : some great racing on the water, some very early starts and long days, always focussing on the fun and enjoyment of the sport, also on the beach between all the competitors, coaches and parents present. Thank you to everyone for the excellent atmosphere and your enthusiasm all through the competition”. That was the verdict of Luca Nardelli, president of the Circolo Vela Arco club, as she opened the prize-giving ceremony for the 2015 O’pen BIC European Championships, hosted by the club on Lake Garda from 23rd to 26th July.
The competition, which attracted 127 of the best European O’pen BIC sailors from 10 countries, got off to a very slow start, a very volatile and unreliable first day wind making it impossible to validate any race.
Rescue kites are now required for some offshore racing. This gives boaters backup propulsion if sail or engine power is lost. The rescue kite system can be easily stowed on any boat and provides peace of mind that you are prepared in the unlikely event of an offshore emergency. The rescue kite can be quickly deployed to provide towing up to 90 degrees across the wind. The kite can also be used to lift distress signals and increase the likelihood of being found at sea.
Thanks for checking out our Kickstarter campaign. With your support we can scale up rescue kite production and help stranded boaters make it back to shore. Please share a link of our project on Facebook Instagram and Twitter, thank you!
Purpose of Campaign: With thousands of marine emergencies occurring each year, the rescue kite is a good to addition to any boat. The main purpose for this Kickstarter campaign is to spread awareness about two new rescue kite systems. The SX Rescue Kite System comes with a 1.8 square meter kite and the RX Rescue Kite System comes with a 3.0 square meter kite. Both systems come ready for operation with control lines, waist harness and a bag.
Rescue Kite Operation: Many problems can leave a vessel stranded at sea and the rescue kite can provide towing back to shore.The Pacific Sky Power Rescue Kite can be deployed directly from a boat and is operable by a single person.
Clip on the waist harness, hold the kite so it fills with wind and then start reeling out. Once the kite is fully deployed, steer with the control bar. If you need a break, just reel in and deploy again when you’re ready.
Not sure if anyone cares but somehow I ended up owning two old Wylie 31′s known as the Gemini Twins from 76. Cool old cold molded no rules boats designed to race in SF. I’d love to know more history so maybe the forums can help. Bought one in Newport and one in Alameda rumor has it they haven’t sailed together in 38 years. – Anarchist John Sweeney.
The sailing conditions remained challenging yesterday as well with a inconsistant breeze, lighter as on the previous days. The European Laser Masters in Poland continued with two races per category…
Just on the opening day of the Moth European Championship, a storm front with winds exceeding 40 kn rushed over the Netherlands, and racing had to be cancelled.
Steve Clarks new C-class cat has intensely long main foils-nearly from the lee hull to the windward hull and pretty shallow. Very innovative system. Also note the small wingtip foil……
from MA by Steve Clark:
“Finally have some renderings of what we are bringing.
1)SNAKEfOILs: Low drag foil solution which can be pulled all the way up on the windward side.
Longer span, less induced drag, less spray and parasitic drag plus we don’t have to fly 1 meter in the air. Splashes are much less dramatic as a result.
Down side is the center of lift is further inboard, so we give up some righting moment. Foil also works near the surface and can ventilate if we don’t pay close attention.
2) Wing re-profiled and twist rebuilt repaired. Wing lowered to end-plate to trampoline.
3) 3di trampoline sealed to centerline of hulls, and with end plating of wing provides significant up force out of trampoline, improved driving force from wing and lower induced drag. Numbers from study are stupidly big. I really find it hard to believe what the machines are telling us, but if it is even half true….
4) Main beam fairing far more aggressive than last time, to try to get some positive camber into the trampoline and get a good seal with minimum sail area.
Weight hasn’t improved, but that’s what happens when you substitute 18 kg hydrofoils for 5 kg centerboards. I am 10 kg lighter however and mike weighs about 15 kg less than Oliver
We have a metric shitload to figure out, and not a lot of time before they start scoring, so I expect we are well behind. Hopefully we can catch up and make it somewhat interesting. So far the testing has been a complete gas or as frustrating as anything I have ever done on the water. Sometimes the difference is really small.
Jon Emmett of Britain is leading in the Radial Masters fleet after six races were completed at the European Championships in Gdynia, Poland
Have you ever taken a leap of faith? Left the safety of shore just for the chance – the hope – that one day you will look back and it will all be worth it? Begin the journey alongside the US Sailing Team Sperry at UNCHARTED WATERS, and watch the odyssey unfold. http://uncharted.sunbrella.com
Here’s a sneak peak at the full-length UNCHARTED WATERS documentary launching SPRING 2016.
Eight races have been completed at the 49er and 49erFX Youth World Championships in Flensburg, Germany, for the 75 crews competing – Day 3 Video
by Debbie Lynn, Sail Magazine
Have you ever noticed how when something goes wrong on a boat, you often must contort and maneuver your body into inaccessible cramped places to fix it? Defying all logical positions and possibilities, you make your body do things you never thought possible. You become a pliable bending machine that can go upside down in a heartbeat, swivel your head like the possessed girl in The Exorcist, balance over a dark abyss as you try to retrieve that tiny little screw in the bottom of the bilge. See it now? This is boat yoga.
Unless you have a marine carpenter, mechanical and electrical engineer, handyman and maid on board, a Master Boat Yoga Guru must toil away fixing the never-ending list of broken stuff in a process I call “mental hopscotch.” The untold gyrations of mental and physical exercises needed to remedy many problems onboard should qualify as a professional sport. In yoga, this process is known as a mindful, thoughtful dedication to our practice. Both scenarios utilize the art of staying calm (mind over matter) to save ourselves from internal combustion via the daily grind, or a boater’s heart attack.
Let’s go to class. The class is called Vinyasa, or “flow”, going continuously from one movement to the next. We’ll begin with repairing the light over the sink. This seems simple enough. You remove the overhead panel (stool required, balancing on your tippy-toes with screwdriver in your mouth) as you fight with the screws that hold the panel in place. Grunting, heaving, cussing and straining, with a sudden crack, it releases. Success! In yoga, we say (without using an expletive) “surrender to the pose.” The more we push, the more it pushes back.
OK, the panel is down. However, an evil smell begins to permeate the cabin. Ah yes … our old friend Mister Mold. Now, besides changing the light fixture, you must find the origin of the odor. You hoist yourself up on top of any cabinet that will support you, thrust your head above the rest of the ceiling panels (flashlight held firmly in your mouth) and hoist yourself into the void. This position can be equal to what we yogis call “plank.” Plank uses every muscle in your body, some you had no idea you had. You are determined, strong, and the body is shaking as you strive to hold position and find the source of the leak that presumably has generated the black mold.
You twist to the right, twist to the left, move forward, backward (still holding your weight off the ground in a one-legged plank) and read on…
In this week’s WoW the Rolex Fastnet the French winh the RORC biannual classic, In Palma the has broken masts and beautiful “Vintage” yachts, the Finns are part of the Rio per-Olympic training regatta, on the last day of the Audi Hamilton Island Race Week the rains came and the winners get “dunked”, Outside the wonderful “Hermitage” in St Patersburg, Russia the fast Extreme Sailing Series, a CAT fight as the first cats of the new World Match Race Tour face off and fight it out and Mike Slade owner/skipper of the British Farr 100 super-maxi Leopard 3 talks of his Rolex Fastnet Race experience. Phew, what a week in sailing and it’s all here in the WoW from boatson.tv the home of live sailing.
What makes elite athletes tick? What is it like to live your dream every day in hopes of a star performance at the Olympics? These are a few of the themes that ‘Uncharted Waters,’ a documentary following athletes on the US Sailing Team Sperry, will explore in the final year of their journey and personal stories toward a spot on the US Olympic and Paralympic Teams that will compete in the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Click headline for full story.
The first racing day of the International Moth Europeans taking place in Bataviahaven in Lelystad, Holland, was a none event due to the strong wind and rough sea conditions…
(August 26, 2015) – Foiling one design catamaran racing comes to Mediterranean Italy for the first time on August 27 with the fourth event of the Bullitt GC32 Racing Tour, Trofeo di Roma, held at Civitavecchia. Four days of racing at the Tour’s Italian venue kicks off at 11:30 CET on Thursday. The aim is to hold six races each day on America’s Cup-style courses, featuring reaching starts and finishes, allowing the foiling catamarans to get up to maximum speed, with crews showing off their tactical and boat handling skills on the windward-leeward legs. Click headline for full story.
Rod Johnstone of J Boats shares his thoughts on how sailboat designs need to be appropriate for sailors’ needs…
What J Boats tries to do is create high performance sailboat designs that sailors can afford to own. We want to be part of the new excitement we see in sailing and sailboat racing. We think our design philosophy fits in well with this new enthusiasm….to provide a more perfect sailboat for as many sailors as possible. As a designer I believe that getting people sailing starts with a great sailboat.
To me the “perfect sailboat” is a vehicle with which sailors of any skill level can safely enjoy the complete range of the sailing experience – from hair-raising speeds in heavy wind to ghosting along in almost no breeze – and want to come back again for more as soon as possible. Sailing provides you confidence and desire as “Captain of your own ship and Master of your own fate” to conquer the forces of nature.
This is the valuable sensation that got most of us hooked on sailing in the first place. Whether you are 8 or 80, you just need a little sailing skill and a sailboat seaworthy enough to enjoy this experience. The “perfect sailboat” can help you do this in the wide range of wind and waves that nature can throw at you at sea. This can be the hook that starts any adventurous soul on a life of sailing.
Speed is an extremely important element of the “perfect sailboat”, especially for racers, but versatility is equally as important. This means the boat must do a lot of things well. What I am really saying is that the “perfect sailboat” is a synthesis consisting of many (sometimes competing) elements to obtain the desired result, which is “great feel” and great performance.
Usually, speed must be compromised slightly to achieve this balance. Boats designed for extreme speed are seldom used for recreational sailing and do not have widespread venues for competitive racing. Extreme speed requires extremely expensive boats – not likely to be popular in a challenging economic climate.
The “perfect sailboat” must excel in its ability to make fast time to windward. This means it must have a proper hull shape, and plenty of stability and an appropriate sail plan to achieve excellent windward performance in everything up to extremely heavy winds and big waves. A sailboat that meets these criteria is generally suitable for family sailing and racing. A sailboat that does not perform well to windward in all conditions leaves its skipper and crew far more vulnerable to the vagaries of nature as well as a lee shore.
A barn door flying a large bedsheet will go downwind pretty well. So the real fascination for me has always been going to windward. Like most people, I am a creature of my environment which is Stonington, Connecticut and Fishers Island Sound where I have sailed all my life. The current here runs from two to three knots and sometimes the wind gets very light. The “perfect sailboat” needs to be able to deal with this, especially with the wind on the nose.
The “perfect sailboat” will provide sailors the ability to choose their own level of danger and excitement, and delight in the experience. There is nothing more satisfying than sailing a boat that will do what you want, when you want, without making you look bad – say, when you need to make a downwind landing in tight quarters at a dock in twenty knots of wind.
The key elements are control, balance, and simplicity. A sailboat that is easy to control is, by definition, well balanced, and will help you “look good” in many circumstances. This can be the difference between your friends and loved ones wanting to sail with you again and your worst “Captain Bligh” moment as you lose control of your boat and lose your crew – maybe permanently.
The degree of perfection of your sailboat is proportional to the tug it exerts on you just to go sailing. Part of this tug is simplicity – not only the controls, but also how easy it is for a shorthanded crew manage the boat. Can the boat be cruised or raced easily with a minimal crew, or is it too dependent on a large number of highly competent crew to be successful… or even usable The latter might break speed records and get the headlines, but the former gets more use because of its simplicity, versatility, and affordability.
Comfort is another important feature of the “perfect sailboat”, usually ignored in extreme racing boats. Ergonomic comfort of a nice place to sit and the ability to move around easily to sail the boat is one aspect of comfort. The other is sea kindliness, or the motion the boat in waves. These both add up to real comfort. This has nothing to do with “all the comforts of home” which are so highly touted at boat shows on boats with spacious interiors at the dock in calm water. The real test comes when you have to sail the boat in big wind and waves.
I am talking about sailing here – not motor-sailing. You can sail anywhere on the “perfect sailboat” without an auxiliary engine. If cruising is your passion, the “perfect sailboat will get you safely from point “A” to point “B” under sail if there is any wind at all. An auxiliary engine may be required in dead calms or in crowded rivers and harbors once you get to your destination, but your sailboat’s degree of perfection is inversely proportional to the percentage of time you rely on your auxiliary for propulsion. Cruising designs do not need to be slow under sail.
To quote the late Uffa Fox, famous British Sailor and Designer, “Owners must praise their vessels, and owners of slow boats praise their comfortable motion in a seaway, quite forgetting that their vessels are comfortable in a sea because they are so slow….It is the speed of a fast yacht that makes her uncomfortable, but as her owner can, by shortening sail, reduce her speed, he has the choice of a fast, but uncomfortable passage, and a slow comfortable one, while the owner of a slow yacht has no choice.”
Specialization of any sailboat design for a particular race, box rule, handicap rule, or point-to-point speed test is usually necessary to achieve success in those racing events. Unfortunately this limits the boat’s usability and desirability. It will only tug you to go sailing when it’s time to go racing in the particular races where the boat is competitive. Hardly anyone really sails these boats for fun. So their value is best preserved by parking them in boatyards on jackstands between big regattas.
J Boats has avoided the “extremes” in our boat designs. We like to think that our boats can be sailed anywhere sailors feel competent to go. Even our new lift-keel 23-foot J/70 has offshore capability – not that we are recommending ocean passages on it. The ability to go safely out of sight of land is enough.
When J Boats creates a new design we try to make it more “perfect” than anything we have done before. Alan Johnstone (Chief Designer) and myself (his assistant) are always asking ourselves whether this is really newer, better, or different than what else is available. Will the owner want to use this boat a lot? Will his/her family and friends want to go sailing on the boat too? Would we want to own one ourselves? Is it reasonable to believe that other sailors would like to own one too? If the answer is “yes” to all these mundane questions, then we are closer to having designed the “perfect sailboat”.
We measure our own success on how frequently owners of our designs sail and race their boats. I think that most sailors agree with this world view of sailing and racing sketched above. Recent economic times have made boat ownership difficult for many, but I am confident that we can overcome this with new designs appropriate to sailors’ needs.
Trapani, Italy (August 26, 2015) – On day 1 of the Melges 32 World Championship, team Argo, (Carroll-Appleton, 4-3-1) considered one of the favorite teams, together with Stig (Rombelli-Bruni, 2-2-4), have reconfirmed their high skill levels. Both collected high placing finishes with a significant margin over Volpe (DeVos-Mendleblatt, 3-4-8). Team Volpe is in third overall ahead of other challenging teams such as Margherita (Mazzucato-Benussi, 10-1-9), in fourth currently. Click headline for full report.
The 40,000 mile Clipper 2015-16 Round the World Yacht Race will begin in London, UK on August 30 for the fleet of twelve identical Tony Castro designed Clipper 70s. The series is divided into 16 individual races, with the team with the best cumulative score winning the Clipper Race Trophy. Each team is led by a professional skipper with an all-amateur crew.
Extract from Episode 5 of the Race of Their Lives TV series. Video published on Aug 26, 2015.