Monthly archives for October, 2012
PERFECT TRIM – NZ’s AC72 is looking pretty fast these days on or off the foils. The crew is fine tuning the boat and is way ahead of the other teams. On the foils the boat is in perfect trim as she sails in flat water. But can the foils work in the extreme wind and tide that San Francisco can muster up? Which way do you think the AC will go…full foiling or conventional hull flying? Let us know at [email protected]
PANERAI TRANSAT – After a brief stay in Barcelona, the Panerai Transat Classique 2012 is underway once again. No time for an observation round, the crews have slipped back into racing mode and are motivated for the fight. The battle to the fickle currents of the Straits of Gibraltar is promising to be a fierce one.
Making the winches scream! If you look at how the boats are progressing in the Panerai Transat Classique 2012, it is quite clearthat the crews are giving no quarter, focusing mercilessly on the finishing line. In the last 36 hours since the race restarted off Barcelona, the three leading yachts have been tacking relentlessly against the wind, their paths crossing on a number of occasions. It is likely that those on watch last night saw the navigation lights of their opponents at least twice. Sea Lion and The Blue Peter initially hugged the coast before tacking out to sea and back again; while Corto did exactly the opposite, in perfect symmetry. It’s a nautical version of “now you see me, now you don’t”!Average speeds are well above what the race committee was expecting.
Aboard the boats the atmosphere is as intense as an afternoon regatta, and just as unpredictable. The Blue Peter was the first to suffer a significant setback: “We got headed really badly in the constantly shifting winds and our genoa got backed on to the spreaders, which ripped it significantly. It was a blow to morale.We really weren’t moving under Yankee and forestaysail; thankfully Paola managed to sew up the yard-long rip in less than two hours.” Luckily for them, they had an expert sailmaker aboard who could deal with the situation quickly. Despite these kinds of incident, the crews are in high spirits and the offshore sailing is providing its fair share of pleasure: “Dolphins jumping, sun and rain, waiting for the westerly.”
A fresh breeze would do White Dolphin a lot of good. She’s currently trailing the pack but is determined to catch up. It’s an unenviable task.Why? Because fitting a new propeller meant she started the race five and a half hours late and didn’t get the same wind conditions as the others; a less favourable and gentler breeze made her do a lot of work just to stay in the game. The gap increased slightly overnight but since then it has stabilized. But the news isn’t all bad for White Dolphin: there’s still more than 500 nautical miles to be sailed before a winner crosses the line in the Tagus estuary off Cascais. Anything can happen between now and then. Maybe the wind will come in from the rear of the fleet to allow the big ketch to make up for lost time.
For more of the story CLICK HERE.
OPEN 5.70 RACING – The Great Pumpkin Regatta is the final high point regatta on the Open 5.70 One Design racing calendar for the Northern California Fleet. This event always delivers some unusual Bay conditions and this year was no exception. The regatta has boats racing around buoys on Saturday, followed by a giant Halloween themed party at Richmond Yacht Club, and then a pursuit “race” around San Francisco Bay on Sunday.
The Open 5.70s had 11 entries, making it one of the largest one-design fleets at the event – only the Express 27s and Moore 24s had 12 boats. Since it was the last high point regatta of the year there was a lot at stake with some podium places still up for grabs in the Northern California Overall One Design competition.
Saturday started light and those boats sailing to the race course ended up breaking out the motor in order to make it to the starting area on time. After a postponement the racing started with the Open 5.70s leading the other 9 fleets racing on the Southampton course – 1 of 3 courses used by Richmond Yacht Club for the 149 boats entered! It was a short course due to the light breeze and those boats that went left, including “Revenge From Mars”, appeared to find better wind rounding ahead of the pack at the weather mark. A significant right shift (40+ degrees) turned it into a drag race as boats reached down to the leeward mark and immediately tacked on to the layline to the finish located upwind of the weather mark.
Other fleets were less fortunate as the breeze shut down to almost nothing as the wind clocked even further to the right. After a long wait for other fleets to finish shortened courses the wind started to fill in again and we were off on a nicely squared race course. Another short one lap course where this time current started to play a role in who got to the marks first. Michael Gough on “boracic” showed everyone the right way to go and led the fleet around the weather mark. Tom Baffico on “The Maker” managed to claw his way past to claim his second bullet of the day. By the start of the 3rd race the wind had filled significantly and those Open 5.70s who had chosen to sail double handed knew they were going to have to work hard to be competitive.
One double handed team, Michael and son Tyler on “boracic”, hung on to 1st place for most of the race desperately fending off some close competition from “Revenge from Mars” and “Frolic” as they all crossed the line for a photo finish. New owner Frederic Bouju on USA 276 had a great first regatta on the Open 5.70 (see video) consistently finishing with the lead group of boats for an overall 5th place. Full results for the Great Pumpkin Race are available here.
With a final shuffle of position the overall one-design championship podium for the 2012 season looks like this : 1st place – Tom Baffico on The Maker, 2nd place – Marc Finot on Frolic, 3rd place – Michael Gough on Boracic. Complete season results available here.
Even though the high point season is over the fleet is going to continue to sail over the winter in the Richmond Midwinters and the Alameda midwinters. If you’re interested in the Open 5.70 and are thinking about joining the fastest growing fleet on San Francisco Bay, which is now up to 15 boats, then contact the fleet captain Marc Finot – [email protected]
J80 2013 WORLDS WEBSITE LAUNCHED – The J80 Worlds website is ready for entries. The worlds will be held in Marseille from 6 to 13 July next year and it is already shaping up to be one of the major sailing events of 2013 across France and Europe.
In the build-up to the event, the record 81 entries taking part in the 2012 NATIONALS, who kick into action tomorrow in Douarnenez, Brittany, certainly won’t deny the wealth of enthusiasm the series’ specialists have for this major J 80 meeting in 2013.
Indeed, the last Worlds to be held in France were hosted in La Trinité-sur-Mer, Brittany, back in 2007 with 124 participants; a record beaten in 2009 in Santander, Spain, with 131 boats taking the start. The 2012 Worlds were held in Dartmouth in the UK.
For 2013, this global event must endeavour to honour the tremendous development of this class worldwide and in Europe and France in particular, as the series has stood out for some 10 years now as the most popular racer-cruiser on both the racing and sailing school circuits.
In this way, the French Cup gathers together nearly 200 boats over its ten or so national events and is France’s most successful one-design circuit. The perfect boat for racing, sailing schools and cruising, the dynamism of the class under its sole President, Ludovic Gilet, and the shortness of breath of the other series, go a long way to explaining the boat’s dominance in France. As such, the Marseille Worlds must embody the class’ approach thus far, whilst placing an emphasis on developing the series in the Mediterranean and in Marseille, where local activity is in the process of receiving a boost.
It cannot be denied that Marseille will provide an exceptional setting for this exceptional event. The second largest city in France and a wide-open gateway onto the Mediterranean, this cosmopolitan city will give the event international influence. Furthermore, Marseille will be the European Capital of Culture in 2013 so the density of the city’s event organisation will make the J 80 Worlds all the more intense.
120 to 150 boats are expected into the Roucas Blanc Stade Nautique (Marine Stadium), which lies just a few metres from the beaches of Le Prado and right next to the beautiful race zone in Marseille’s southern harbour.
All the necessary logistical means to deal with July’s influx in Marseille will be arranged with the assistance of the teams in charge of the city’s marine events. In this way, during the week of competition, the Roucas Blanc port and site will be entirely dedicated to the event, with temporary pontoons installed according to needs, with private parking nearby, the storage of trailers at a protected outdoor site and a partnership with the Accor group to satisfy accommodation requests.
After the period set aside for welcoming the boats from Friday 5 to the evening of Sunday 7 July, Monday 8 July will see the launch of the event with a training race and a large marine parade to get the locals involved in the event.
The races themselves will be spread over 3 daily races from Tuesday 9 to Saturday 13 July. The on-the-water organisation will be relying on the Fédération Française de Voile (French Sailing Federation), who will in turn be supported by the teams drummed up by the main local sailing clubs, who have a vast experience of major sailing events.
The intensity of the on-the-water competition will be mirrored by a packed programme of entertainment on shore, to make the week-long stay in Marseille a relaxed celebration for the crews in the Roucas Blanc race village. The programme will kick off with an opening soirée on Monday 8 July, a nightly prize-giving with entertainment in the large marquee pitched alongside the boats and a sumptuous skippers’ supper on Friday 12 July. All that, for the price of an inscription!
At the behest of Didier Réault, the City of Marseille, the event’s main partner, certainly has all the necessary ingredients to make the WORLDS an unforgettable moment. At least 30 nations are expect to attend, though requests from overseas crews are positively flooding in with several American crews already organising transport of their J 80s to Marseille…
Finally, for the French crews, the main competitive aim of these Worlds will be to try to bring an end to the Spanish domination, with no less than 3 such crews on the 2012 podium in Dartmouth; the current titleholder being Jose Maria Van Der Ploeg on NILFISK.
SAILING NEWS – Tall Ships America Statement regarding loss of HMS BOUNTY:
The tall ship HMS BOUNTY was lost yesterday in Hurricane Sandy off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. Of the 16 persons reportedly aboard at the time, we understand that one individual has perished, and that 14 others were rescued, thanks to the exemplary courage and skill of Coast Guard search and rescue personnel. It appears that the vessel’s master, Robin Walbridge, is missing, and the search continues.
A member of Tall Ships America, HMS BOUNTY was a popular participant in public maritime festivals around North America. Our membership is united in sending our thoughts, prayers and best wishes to the crew and their families, to the family of the crewmember who was lost, and to the brave Coast Guard team who sustain our hopes for Captain Walbridge’s speedy rescue.
There is currently much speculation about the loss of the vessel. We believe that further speculation is not helpful at this time, especially in view of the respect that is due to the individuals whose lives are directly affected by these tragic events. Tall Ships America does not have any factual information to add but notes that there will surely be an official inquiry that will assemble much more complete information than is available to anyone now. We are confident that our membership, if called upon, will cooperate with that inquiry in the full spirit of professionalism upon which the sail training movement depends.
For now, we appeal to the public to lend their thoughts and support to the crew and shore team of HMS BOUNTY and their families, to join us in thanking the Coast Guard rescue team for their heroism on behalf of our colleagues, and to sustain hopes for Captain Walbridge’s safe return.
Tall Ships America is a non-profit organization dedicated to enriching youth education through character building and leadership programs aboard tall ships. It is the hub for tall ship activity, expertise, and information in North America, and is commended by Congress as the Sail Training organization representing the United States. www.tallshipsamerica.org
MOVING PICTURES – It is day 2 in Marmaris International Raceweek and the stormy weather gave its place to sunny skies and a southeast breeze, making the coastal race really exciting. See the action here!
A WORD FROM OUR SPONSOR – For anyone from Santa Barbara to San Diego, Open Sailing USA is going to be hosting a series of marine related seminars on Wednesday nights @ 7pm – see the flyer for more information.
- Wednesday November 7th – Wind and Waves by Mike Leneman (Facebook)
- Wednesday November 14th – Marine Electrical Systems by Thomas Lehtonen (Facebook)
- Wednesday November 28th – Instruments and Autopilots by Bob Congdon (Facebook)
- Wednesday December 5th- Navigation and Modern Seamanship by Mike Priest (Facebook)
WORLD NEWS POSTED BY XS SAILING – In case you need more news…we have it! Just click in our menu bar above or the side banner on the right that says ‘WORLD NEWS’.
XS WORLD NEWS links to all the major sailing news sources on the web from RRS feeds so you can get sailing news anytime, anywhere from around the world, as it happens.
Our homepage stories are always updated with unique and major headline stories, but after reading our homepage and you still want more sailing news go to XS WORLD NEWS posted by XS.
THE BOUNTY SINKS – George Howell of CNN reports on the sinking of the HMS Bounty, and the rescue of most of its crew. As Bounty was sinking in 40-knot winds and 18-ft seas, three crewmembers reportedly didn’t make it into the rafts. One managed to swim to a raft, while the other two — Capt. Walbridge and newest crewmember Claudene Christian (reported to be a direct descendant of Fletcher Christian) — were swept away. Tragically, crewmember Claudene Christian body was recovered un-responsive at the scene then pronounced dead later. Currently, Robin Walbridge, the Bounty’s Captain, remains missing.
WORLD SAILORS OF THE YEAR – In just one week ISAF and Rolex will announce the 2012 ISAF Rolex World Sailors of the Year at an award ceremony in Dublin, Ireland.
The ceremony will take place during a dinner hosted at the historic Mansion House in the heart of Dublin and will be attended by many of the world’s top sailors and delegates to the ISAF Annual Conference taking place in nearby Dun Loaghaire. The evening will be a celebration of true sailing talent and success.
The winners are selected by the ISAF Member National Authorities (MNAs), the national governing bodies for sailing around the world, who have been invited to vote for one male and one female nominee they believe most deserves the Award for their efforts during the nomination period.
This year there are five male and four female nominees who have been shortlisted for the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards based on their achievements during the qualifying period of 1 September 2011 to 31 August 2012.
The 2012 nominees are:
Ben Ainslie (GBR) – Finn – London 2012 Olympic Gold Medallist & 2012 World Champion
Mathew Belcher & Malcolm Page (AUS) – Men’s 470 – London 2012 Olympic Gold Medallists, 2011 and 2012 World Champions & 2011-2012 ISAF Sailing World Cup Champions
Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen (AUS) – 49er – London 2012 Olympic Gold Medallists & 2011 and 2012 World Champions
Loïck Peyron (FRA) – Outright Around the World Record
Tom Slingsby (AUS) – Laser – London 2012 Olympic Gold Medallist & 2011 and 2012 World Champion
Támara Echegoyen, Ángela Pumariega and Sofía Toro (ESP) – Women’s Match Racing – London 2012 Olympic Gold Medallists
Helena Lucas (GBR) – 2.4mR – London 2012 Paralympic Gold Medallist & 2011-12 ISAF Sailing World Cup Champion
Saskia Sills (GBR) – RS:X – ISAF Youth Sailing World Champion & European Youth Champion
Lijia Xu (CHN) – Laser Radial – London 2012 Olympic Gold Medallist
Click here to find out more about the nominated sailors and their achievements.
XS CLASSIFIEDS ARE FREE! – Need to sell a boat or buy one? Check out our FREE XS Classifieds! Here is an sample of what you will find or sell on XS:
Need a boat for the 2013 Transpac? Here it is! Check out the details: S-40 hull#004 2011 built in France almost new condition – Ready for shipping to everywhere – Sails: North Sails FRANCE main, Genoa, Spin – Safety gears, cradle, Liferaft, Yanmar3YM SD, folding prop, Tiller version – Specially Very Fast in down wind, best boat for Transpac race 2013 – Delivered in Long Beach USA or ???
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CLIPPER RACE – The first of the Clipper Race’s new fleet of twelve 70-foot ocean racing yachts arrived in Felixstowe UK last night (Monday 29 October 2012), marking the start of a new era for the race.
Sir Robin Knox Johnston, Founder and Chairman of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, said: “This is a very exciting time for the Clipper Race. We are particularly looking forward to receiving the first boat and completing our company trials in home waters.”
Click here to view pictures of the Clipper 70’s arrival.
Clipper Race Logistics Partner PSP transported the first Clipper 70 and the second is already en route. Each was loaded onto a vessel in Qingdao in China and transferred by sea to Felixstowe in Suffolk, where the mast and rigging will be fitted locally before the yachts are sailed to the Clipper Race base in Gosport, ready for final fit out, trials and pre-race training.
Managing Director of PSP, Frank Dixie, said: “As a trenchant supporter of the marine industry and the sport of sailing, we are honoured to bring these yachts to the UK. The Clipper 70s will form a part of sailing history and to be a part of that is fantastic.”
Highly respected naval architect, Tony Castro, was commissioned to design the new fleet, which features the third generation of Clipper Race yachts. The twelve new yachts will create the world’s biggest matched fleet of large ocean racing yachts.
The Clipper Round the World Yacht race is the longest at 40,000 miles. The ninth edition of the unique biennial event starts in summer (UK) 2013 and will take almost a year to complete. It is the only race to train amateurs to cross some of the world’s most challenging oceans.
If you’d like to find out more about taking part in the Clipper Race, click here to register for details.
You can also discover more about the brand new Clipper 70s, here.
DISABLED SAILING CHAMPIONSHIPS – The final day of the U.S. Disabled Sailing Championships saw six new champions crowned in frustratingly light conditions on San Diego Bay. Check out the very close finish in the Liberty class between Russell Phillips and Carwile LeRoy and hear from regatta coach and Paralympic Coach Betsy Alison.
J24 RACING – The Hillman Capital Management J/24 East Coast Championships hosted by the Severn Sailing Association (SSA) and Fleet 8 in Annapolis, MD is held in the fall around Halloween and has the reputation of providing big breezes with cool temperatures, three days of competitive racing, and a great party. The 34th edition of this fall classic however featured mild temperatures, a shifty breeze that ranged between only five and fifteen knots, and the impending arrival of Hurricane Sandy.
With the final day of racing cancelled, the highly experienced SSA Race Committee successfully set off seven races, and it was enough to crown Tim Healy and his 11th Hour Racing crew as this year’s J24 East Coast Champion. Having just placed second at this year’s J/24 World Championships in Rochester, NY, the former World Champion quickly established his skillful management of the shifting conditions. Healy left no doubt as the top competitor of the event, having no finishes worse than fourth place in a fleet of 34 boats.
Once again, SSA was able to accommodate everyone even while undergoing a major renovation of the clubhouse. After each day of racing, sailors were met at the docks by fleet volunteers with smiling faces and trays full of Copperhead Ale and Bud Light. There was also an unlimited supply of Dark and Stormys at the tent party to satisfy even the thirstiest sailor.
The event also treated racers to a traditional Maryland crab soup and a fresh oyster bar, which featured the two-time U.S. National Oyster Shucking Champion, George ‘The Oyster Guy’ Hastings. Besides the epic games, the tent party was highlighted by the event raffle that gave away over 50 items and featured a new J/24 Quantum mainsail won by Peter Bream.
Plans are already under way for next year’s event and it promises to be even bigger and better. Come on out if you’ve never been to the East Coast Championships or haven’t been in a while. You won’t want to miss out on one of the most premier sailing events on the East Coast.
Full Results HERE
ROLEX MIDDLE SEA RACE RECAP – The 2012 Rolex Middle Sea Race captured a certain spirit of offshore sailing. A race characterized by a frustrating search for a fickle breeze tested crews’ resolve, patience and determination. This was not split second, cut and thrust racing rather tactically strenuous, mentally arduous sailing with concentration and team spirit at the fore.
A record-breaking 83 international entrants from almost 20 countries and territories took part in this annual contest that commences and finishes in Malta, a measure of the event’s global appeal and increase in stature since Rolex began its involvement as title sponsor in 2002.
This 33rd edition witnessed the crowning of a new champion, representing a continent that had not previously provided a race winner, confirmed the recent dominance of the fleet’s fastest boat and most poignantly showcased the Corinthian spirit that inspired the race’s inception in 1968 and has been its prevalent feature ever since.
A new name and country was etched on the list of Rolex Middle Sea Race Trophy recipients when South African entry Hi Fidelity was confirmed as the event’s overall winner. Hi Fidelityfinished the race in Marsamxett Harbour, Malta under violent thunderstorms and gusts of 37 knots, elements uncharacteristic of the tepid conditions she had witnessed throughout much of the 606-nm race.
Eddie De Villiers’ Welbourne 46 proved to be the week’s outstanding performer, completing the course that comprises an anti-clockwise loop around Sicily in little over four days and sixteen hours. The boat has form. Under the ownership of renowned sailmaker Neil Pryde, she claimed both outright victory and line honours at the 2010 Rolex China Sea Race.
“I’ve always been interested in challenging navigational races. This together with the Rolex Sydney Hobart was the race I wanted to do in my lifetime,” said an ecstatic De Villiers. “The whole idea of bringing Hi Fidelity to Europe was to do this race and it hasn’t disappointed us.” Effective tactical decisions enabled Hi Fidelity to maintain an ideal position in the fleet. “Patience is the greatest challenge in not making silly mistakes as you don’t have a lot of space in light airs to move. Once you’re committed to a certain position on the course, you’re going to have to live with that decision”.
Hi Fidelity’s triumph is a genuine testament to team spirit. The bulk of De Villiers’ all South African crew have sailed together since childhood and are the embodiment of Corinthian sailing. The team includes Michael Joubert and Mark Sadler, professional sailors who represented Team Shosholoza,South Africa’s one-time America’s Cup representative. “When the going gets rough you want the right soldiers on the course,” added De Villiers. “Winning the Rolex Middle Sea Race is probably the highlight of my sailing career. It has been a wonderful experience and something I’ll cherish for the rest of my life.”
South Africa becomes the ninth different country to provide a Rolex Middle Sea Race winner.
A united fleet
Notwithstanding the difficulties encountered during the race and the size of the battle to return to Malta ahead of the event’s cut off time for arrival, fewer than 15 crews retired: a measure of resolve in the face of adversity.
Trustmarque Quokka skipper Philippe Falle admitted: “Retiring never really crossed the mind. It was an intriguing race, a bit off the wall with the conditions and parking. The overall performance of team and scenery made up for everything. This is my favourite of the four (Rolex Middle Sea Races) I have done even though it was so slow.”
One of the main challenges faced was managing supplies. “We’re not expecting to see winds above 10-12 knots so we’re aiming to be as light as possible. We go through sails, spares, food and whatever we can to shave a key kilos,” said Rán 2 team manager Tim Powell before the start. During the final 24 hours of their race, the crews on both Esimit Europa 2 and Rán 2 were rationing food, a measure of the strict regime onboard fully professional yachts. Schümann joked on arrival in Malta that a few packets of crackers were all the crew had left to sustain themselves.
Supplies onboard the majority of Corinthian crews – more readily braced for a week at sea and less concerned about carrying extra weight – lasted a while longer. Many enjoyed the slow but stunningly scenic passage around Stromboli with a hearty meal. For these teams, the increasing challenge in the final few days was fatigue.
“It was very tactical. The crew worked round the clock. The boat was pushed to its optimum throughout,” explained Lee Satariano, co-skipper of the defending champion and the fastest Maltese finisher Artie. “This race was mentally tiring with constant sail changes, it didn’t let up,” added co-skipper Christian Ripard.
Another notable feature was how the fleet regularly expanded and compressed. “We’ve often got six or seven boats for company which is not often what you see during an offshore race,” reported Mitch Booth, co-skipper of Kuka-Light as the Swiss boat approached the halfway point at Favignana. Duels that commenced as soon as the cannons sounded during the race start from the Grand Harbour in Valletta persisted right through to the final passage in the Comino Channel. An example is the battle between Maltese boats Oiltanking Juno and Elusive. After five days and 23 hours practically side by side, only 16 seconds separated the two boats at the finish.
Perhaps the most inspiring story was provided by the doublehanded Irish duo of Barry Hurley and Andrew Boyle on the 35-ft Dinah which arrived in Malta with just 25 minutes to spare before the event’s cut-off time for arrival. The pair spent six days and 20 hours sailing with only each other for company. Reward was victory in their class and the admiration of everyone present at the final prizegiving held at the Mediterranean Conference Centre in Valletta.
Such fighting spirit was typical of a contest that may have been light on drama but was never richer in human spirit. “This is always a difficult race. Every leg brought something new. We didn’t get a lot of sleep,” explained Joubert, co-skipper on Hi Fidelity. “We had an awesome bunch of guys onboard. There were a lot of jokes and laughs while keeping the focus. The goal was to have a good time and get round.” A sentiment echoed by the entire fleet.
AC NEWS – For the first time in the history of the America’s Cup, young, talented sailors have a clear pathway towards competing for one of the most prestigious trophies in sport. The Red Bull Youth America’s Cup opens the door for young sailors to gain the experience they need to contribute to a Cup team.
Racing will take place in the same high performance, wing-sailed AC45 catamarans that are used in the America’s Cup World Series. The Red Bull Youth America’s Cup is scheduled for August/September 2013, in San Francisco, during the heart of the 34th America’s Cup racing season.
The Red Bull Youth America’s Cup is open to national teams of six sailors, aged 19 to 24 in 2013. Each crew must hold a valid passport of the country their team represents. Equipment, including the AC45 platform and wing, will be supplied to teams who have their entry accepted.
The next milestone for the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup comes next month when the entry list for youth squads associated with AC World Series teams is finalized following the close of late entries on 31 October. This will determine the number of spots remaining for teams competing in the Selection Series.
Red Bull Youth America’s Cup – Upcoming milestones:
October 31, 2012 – Close of late entries
Early November 2012 – Confirmation of entry list for Red Bull Youth America’s Cup teams associated with AC World Series teams
Early December 2012 – Confirmation of youth teams invited to Red Bull Youth America’s Cup Selection Series
February 9-24, 2013 – Red Bull Youth America’s Cup Selection Series in San Francisco
September 1-4, 2013 – Red Bull Youth America’s Cup in San Francisco
RC44 RACING – Oman Sail is preparing to roll out the red carpet to a host of influential sailing guests after Muscat, the capital of Oman, was selected as a venue for the prestigious RC44 regatta at the start of 2013.
Supported by some of the world’s leading business figures as owner/drivers and their star-studded sailing crews, the high-status RC44 circuit has become one of the most popular and competitive one-design classes in the sport.
The RC44 Championship Tour is now recognised as both a top sporting event and a platform for some high powered business networking, making it an ideal vehicle to advance Oman’s plans to drive forward economic development by attracting tourists to the Sultanate and encouraging foreign investment.
On the back of three consecutive years of hosting the Extreme Sailing Series, the RC44 regatta is set to take place from 30 January to 3 February 2013 at The Wave, Muscat.
“Our biggest challenge is to ensure the right sort of event for this calibre of individual. The Wave, Muscat is the home of Oman Sail with plenty of big boat berthing in the marina, our new sailing school plus all the technical and human resources facilities which made it an ideal venue,” said Issa Al Ismaili, Event Director at Oman Sail.
“Unlike the Extreme Sailing Series, there will be no public activities or race village but the focus will be on VIP hospitality which will revolve around the owners and their guests.
“So we are putting together a programme of social functions on and off the water, involving local dignitaries and sponsors, designed to showcase Oman.
“It is part of Oman Sail’s mission to promote the country both as tourism and inward investment destination so we are opening doors to new investment opportunities and longer term visions by welcoming RC44 owners, followers of the RC44 class and other high calibre individuals from the business world,” said Al Ismaili.
Up to 15 teams are expected to attend the five-day event, which will be the first of five RC44 regattas in 2013 with Italy, Sweden, Portugal and Spain also chosen as host countries.
Oman is fast becoming a favoured sailing destination both among professional and recreational sailors with the Extreme 40 events attracting worldwide attention and the recent announcement that the Laser World Championship will be raced out of Oman in 2013. The addition of the prestigious RC44 regatta, with its high calibre crews and state-of-the-art high performance boats, is set to strengthen Oman Sail’s reputation as an event host delivering professional, well-organised and highly rated sailing events.
NORD STREAM RACE – The Swan 60 Fleet have finally reached their destination of Greifswald, ending the 750 mile journey of the Nord Stream Race. We began in St Petersburg, stopping at Helsinki, Gotland, and an unpredicted detour into Karlskrona (due to severe weather). But through it all, we had to have an overall winner to take home the trophy… and that winner was Team Russia!
Not only has Russia hosted a new and exciting race (that shall mark its place firmly in the sailing calendar), but they also went on to win. Congratulations to everyone in Team Russia, and congratulations to the other competitors: Team Europe, Team France, Team Holland, and Team Germany.
© Vincent Curutchet / DPPI
VENDEE GLOBE – GET TO KNOW THE SAILORS – With the Vendee Globe ready to start on Nov 10th the sailors are getting ready and excited to start racing. Vendee Globe sailor, Jean Le Cam, is known for his funny comments and one look at his eyes will tell you the French sailor is always excited to be at sea. He has been for decades. And he is now about to start his third Vendée Globe, a race he finished at the second place in 2004. Le Cam tells us about his motivation before the start as well as his opinion on the evolution of the Open 60’ class.
Jean Le Cam, what is your main motivation to be at the start of this Vendée Globe?
I competed in sixteen Solitaire du Figaro races and only two Vendée Globe. Poulidor (editor’s note : A French cycling star from the 1960’s and 1970’s) competed in so many Tour de France races, even though he may not be such a good example as he tended to finish second all the time… The bottom line is I still have a lot of possibilities ahead. And I’m back here because this is such a beautiful race.
Do you think the fact you’ve never sailed in a race on this yacht will be an issue?
We chose not to sail so we could focus on preparing the boat because we were aware we were quite late. We optimised what little time we had left and we spent it preparing the boat and qualifying her. We didn’t have time to compare our situation to others’ and frankly, sigle days of training do not mean a lot when it comes to the Vendée Globe.
You’ll be at the start with a boat that is not from the latest generation (Loïck Peyron’s former Gitana Eighty) but with a lot of renovation and improvements involved. How do you think she will compare to more recent yachts?
There will be differences in terms of performance but not huge ones, I think, especially now that we have optimized her. That will make the confrontation exciting! As far as weight is concerned, we’re quite close to the recent boats. Synerciel may be a little more basic, she has proved she is reliable throughout the many miles she has covered, including a round-the-world race, the Barcelona World Race. That’s all I can say, we’ll see what happens next…
« I know my boat like the back of my hand »
When talking about your partner SynerCiel, France’s leading network of small and medium-sized artisans, you say you feel like an artisan too…
We are a small team and we’re all artisans, we need to multitask and be skilled in many different fields. That’s not a problem for me, quite the opposite, it helps us stay focused on our own things, specially the technical ones. I’m exchanging a lot with the other team members so we’re all at the same level, we all do a little bit of everything. I have to be there every day and as a consequence, I know my boat like the back of my hand.
You’re also concerned about the preservation of the environment…
Yes, we’ve worked hard on our hydrogenerator, which allows me to use very little fossil fuel. I’m only taking 150 litres with me.
You usually name the different parts of your yacht, like « Big Lulu » for the mail sail and « Léon » for the autopilot… Is that going to be the same on SynerCiel?
No, because the names I give them depends on my mood and I pick the names completely randomly. But once parts have been given a name, they keep it forever.
Have some SynerCiel parts been given a name yet?
Yes, just one. Tonio the small gennaker, Samiard Bruno Garcia and myself calle dit that during the last Barcelona World Race. And since this gennaker is very similar, I’m calling it Tonio too.
« We need to reduce the impact of money on performances »
What do you think the Open 60’ Class will evolve in the future?
To me, we’re in a key period. Clearly. I think the class should be made more available to younger skippers, we need to reduce the impact of money on performances. That means developing projects that pay for themselves faster. Our boats are all very expensive so we need to have lower costs and a guarantee that investments will last longer in time, which means the boat must remain efficient longer. Hence a need for yacht standardisation, in my opinion, at least when it comes to the hull, the deck and the mast. The idea is to keep te current fleet the way it is and add a new yacht that would be as efficient and that would bring a smooth transition. Look at what is happening in the 6.50 class, for example. There’s been only one prototype built this year, which says a lot.
Your radio or video vacs have been among the highlists of the previous editions. They will be eagerly awaited this year. Are you feeling the pressure?
A sentence is a sentence. I’m glad people are interested in what I have to say but if they’re not, I don’t mind it.
As a hard-core competitor, what is your objective in this Vendée Globe?
The Vendée Globe is an adventure above all, the first goal is to finish. I’m very happy I’m at the start and I can compete in that race. And then you have to wait until the end to see how things really worked out.
INTERVIEW BY Christophe FAVREAU
ORACLE 17 CAPSIZE IN REVIEW – In this week’s America’s Cup Discovered we look at the devastating capsize of ORACLE TEAM USA’S AC72 in San Francisco Bay. The capsize made headline news around the globe; conjecture and speculation rife as to the consequence of the capsize. The team is in shock, and will now have to reevaluate their defence strategy for the 34th America’s Cup.
European 18 Foot Skiff Grand Prix 2012 – And the winner is Team Hyde Sails, GBR 26 from the UK. congratulations to Jack Grogan, Sam Caslin and Mike Banks for a great season with victories in Hungary and the Netherlands and a second place in Germany. On the 2nd place is Team Magic Marine, GER33 from Germany followed by the winner from 2011 on 3rd place overall, Team Pica from the UK. Jamie, Steward and Tristan participated only in 3 of 5 races so this is a very honorable result. The UK-Grand Prix was a hot finish of a great season. All teams will recover and hopefully come back next year even stronger. A total of 25 teams participated in the series all over Europe with races in Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany and after three years back in the UK, this is great.
Teams that participated in all races had to drive between 12000 and 15000 kms, thanks to all for your will and energy to help develop this class by attending to the races.
Strongest fleet in Europe has been Great Britain with 10 participants, followed by Germany with 8, Suisse with 2, Hungary with 2, Denmark, Luxemburg and the Netherlands each with 1 team.
FOR FULL RESULTS GO TO: www.18footer.org
AC NEWS – With a mighty blow, Miuccia Prada shattered the traditional champagne bottle across the bowsprit of the Luna Rossa AC72 catamaran that will carry her famous fashion brand into battle on the continuing quest to win the America’s Cup for Italy.
Although the Italian flag flew large over the base, this latest addition to the AC72 fleet entered the waters of the Waitemata Harbor in Auckland, New Zealand, where Luna Rossa made its Cup debut a dozen years ago.
By Miuccia Prada’s side at the launch was her husband, Patrizio Bertelli, who earlier said that in the current economic climate Italy had an appetite for something joyful and serene.
Always noted for elegant graphics, the latest yacht to carry the Luna Rossa name cut a dash in the sunset with its hull and wing coated in a dramatic mirror surface. The symbolism from this treatment was appropriate in the sense that this yacht is a mirror image of Emirates Team New Zealand’s AC72, which was launched in July.
The two teams have entered an agreement to build identical boats and conduct trial races against each other in Auckland over the next five or six months of the southern hemisphere summer.
Under the Protocol, the hulls of the Italian challenger were built at the Persico Marine facility in Northern Italy and were shipped to New Zealand in June. Most of the components, including the towering, 130-foot tall wing sail, were built in New Zealand.
As the Italian yacht was lowered into the water for the first time, fireworks erupted and the crowd of invited guests burst into cheers and applause. Among the guests were Regatta Director Iain Murray, Louis Vuitton’s Christine Belanger and a large contingent of Emirates Team New Zealand personnel, including Grant Dalton and skipper Dean Barker.
This presence reflects the close relationship between the two teams, which Patrizio Bertelli said was crucial to the Italian campaign. Having decided to re-enter the Cup arena quite late, Bertelli said the challenge would not have been viable without the technical design sharing arrangement with Emirates Team New Zealand.
“The objective is for us both to get to the Louis Vuitton Cup finals and then we will beat each other up on the water,” he said.
“We have two virtually identical boats that can be mutually beneficial. We can compare boats and improve boats better that way than in isolation. It is going to be very interesting.”
Bertelli, who confirmed that Luna Rossa was committed to competing in the 34th and 35th America’s Cup regattas, said the Italian team had also changed some elements of their boat, including foils and soft sails, to test different concepts.
Skipper Max Sirena said the team would take a step-by-step approach to learning how to handle their new boat. “We will not go out sailing in 25 knots on day one,” he said. “In the AC72, there are a lot of tricky systems to test. It is not just the structural part. There are the foils, the rudder systems, the wing – a lot of systems to check before we can start to push.
“We are excited to jump into the water. It is hard to keep the crew under control, because they want to push, but we need to push smartly.”
Mindful of ORACLE TEAM USA’s recent capsize in San Francisco and subsequent damage to the main beam of the Artemis Racing yacht, Sirena said: “It is going to be hard to find the limit of the boats. We will take that step by step. We don’t want to have the same problem as Oracle and Artemis.”
He predicted that this America’s Cup would be won not necessarily by the team with the fastest boats or the best technology, but “by making fewer mistakes than the other guy.”
Asked how long he thought the team would take to get up to speed, Sirena replied: “We have watched Emirates Team New Zealand, Oracle and Artemis very closely. We don’t know how long it will take, but if everything goes well by the middle of the second week in November, we hope to line up around the race course with ETNZ.”
Even though the team is setting up half a world away, Bertelli believed there was support for their campaign in Italy.
“Italy is not going through a very happy period of time in general. We carefully thought about whether it was a good idea to make an investment in the America’s Cup at this time. Fortunately Prada could afford to make that investment, so we decided to go ahead.
“As far as the Italian public is concerned, they would be happy to support a winning team in any sport. Italy has an appetite for something joyful and serene. That is something we would like to do for Italy.”
STORM WATCH – The hurricane and tropical storm season, which runs from June 1st to November 1st, could impact the areas in which your home, business, boats, or family reside. Gowrie Group offers resources to help you best prepare, stay safe, and recover from the impacts of extreme windstorms.
- 10 Named Storms with top winds of 39 mph or higher (avg is 12 named storms per year)
- 4 Hurricanes with top winds 74 mph or higher (avg is 6.5 hurricanes per year)
- 2 Major Hurricanes of Cat 3, 4 or 5 with winds of at least 111 mph (avg is 2 major hurricanes per year)
A WORD FROM OR SPONSOR – Open Sailing is having a day of demo sailing on their Open 5.70. If you are in Santa Barbara this weekend stop by and go for a fun sail. For more info go CLICK HERE.
TEAM EMIRATES – They spent the day on the water getting more practice days in. Here are a few photos from the day. She is looking FAST!!! More photos CLICK HERE
AMERICAS CUP – One week after capsizing on San Francisco Bay, ORACLE TEAM USA is busy moving forward with repairs on the first AC72. At the same time, construction is well underway on the team’s second boat.
Attention now turns to scheduling and balancing work lists as the team prepares not only to get sailing again as soon as possible, but also to race next summer.
“We have had a series of discussions throughout the team and looked at all options. We needed to be realistic, and consider the level of risk involved,” general manager Grant Simmer said. “We know we must focus on building the second AC72, and getting it sailing in the spring. The second boat is key to our defense of the Cup.”
ORACLE TEAM USA completed construction on their first AC72 and launched it in August. The second boat build is scheduled to wrap up in the spring at the team base in San Francisco, allowing for a two-boat training and testing program in preparation for the 34th America’s Cup.
“We have started the repair process on our first AC72 – our shore team is progressing with this work.” Simmer said. “A new wing was already under construction at Core Builder Composites in New Zealand – it is expected to arrive and be ready to use in the repaired boat early next year. We’re also planning the construction of a third wing for use on the second boat.”
The team had eight days of training on the water before capsizing on October 16. The boat was towed back to the team base at Pier 80, and the platform was removed from the water the following day. As a result of the incident, the wing sail was severely damaged.
All of ORACLE TEAM USA is now tackling the list of repairs, and will soon resume the testing program on the AC45s.
“There are variables still to be determined,” Simmer said. “We’re considering all options to define the best path to be able to win in September.”
HAPPY HOUR FRIDAY – Its almost Halloween so here is a drink for the season.
The Pumpkin Fever is an easy to make dessert cocktail that if filled with flavor and has a delightful, creamy mouth feel. The two spirits add all of the flavor; Bols Pumpkin Smash has a sweet and spicy taste and Sailor Jerry’s brings in a tingling spiced rum taste. Those two elements do taste like a very spicy pumpkin pie, but the milk and cream that are added in the Pumpkin Fever make the drink silky and smooth and to tame down that spiced punch nicely.
- 2 parts Bols Pumpkin Smash
- 1 part Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum
- 1/4 part cream
- 1/4 part milk
- Cinnamon for garnish
- Sugar for rimming
MINI TRANSAT – For the first time in the USA, a group of singlehanded sailors from all over the country are going to race from California to Hawaii aboard Mini-Transat boats – 21-foot ocean capable racers that are barely larger than the average suburban vehicle. The Singlehanded Mini Transpac will be held in July of 2013.
“Mini” is short for “Mini Transat 6.50″. Each Mini (there are a variety of different make and models) is designed according to strict box rules. The boat cannot be longer than 21.3 feet (6.50 meters) and can’t be wider than 9.84 feet (3 meters). There are restrictions for mast height, draft, shape of cabin-top, size of companionway, and also safety constraints such as positive flotation, righting moment and escape hatch to name a few.
Mini architects and builders have created boats that are extremely light, fast, powerful yet stable and safe, even in the most extreme offshore conditions. With the innovations developed for this class, these designers have influenced an entire industry. Open 60s, Volvo 70s on down to production cruising boats have all taking a page or two from the Mini playbook.
Racing offshore with a crew is plenty challenging but now imagine racing offshore singlehanded in a boat this small. For most of these racers the Mini Transpac will be their first singlehanded voyage and there’s no doubt the challenge is huge. Beyond the crossing itself, getting to the start-line will be no small order. Boats have to meet safety requirements and sailors must prove that they can indeed spend 15-20 days alone at sea. Each racer will have to sail a 400nm qualifier, this will be no laid back cruise – for most of the entrants it’ll be more like a hike up Mount Everest. Some of the world’s most notable and legendary offshore sailors including Ellen MacArthur, Sam Davies and Michel Desjoyeaux have cut their teeth aboard these tough little vessels.
A website is currently being created for the race that will employ tracking software that will enable the sailing community to be able to watch the battle on the water. The Minis, being very equal in boat speed, gives the Mini Transpac the excitement of an inshore one-design race combined with the jeopardy of a round the world contest.
The race has already begun. Sailors are getting to know each other, boats are being prepared as we speak. A quality offshore boot camp is in the organizational stage in Southern California that will launch this winter. This event is only open to Mini Transat boats that qualify as such.
Once in Hawaii, this will be more than a group of sailors arriving. It will be a tight gathering of friends who would have shared the same emotions, intellectual and physical challenges. And last but not least, another factor to file in the “plus” column is these boats are small enough to be affordable and easily be shipped back to the mainland once the race is through.
If you want to learn more about the Mini Transpac 2013, “Like” the North American Mini Class Facebook page. There will be more information very soon.
Also, as a teaser, enjoy this video of Singlehanded Mini Sailors in Europe, where crossing the oceans on 21 foot boat is a must for all offshore sailors ;-)