SAILING HISTORY – Check out this cool film on the 1964 Sydney Hobart race with sailing footage and interviews – great sailing history!
AC NEWS – Where do you think the next AC should be sailed… San Diego or Bermuda?
Go vote in our ‘XS Poll’ over there on the upper right side of the site just below XS Chat. The XS collective has always been right! So far it looks like San Diego is winning the poll in the early rounds.
However, Bermuda is gaining on San Diego! As the poll gets more votes the percentage has jumped 15% in favor of Bermuda . Currently San Diego leads with a 70/30 lead but it was a 85/15 one week ago. So Bermuda is gaining as it gets closer to decision time by the AC organizers.
So Vote today.. it only takes a second… no personal info and no email required – just click on your answer then click on ‘vote’! Can you guess correctly where the next AC will be sailed?
DESTOPNEWS – The Sailing Updates – Destopnews #47 – In this report:
1. Inport race Cap Town The Girls on SCA 3e – Volvo Ocean Race #VOR
2. Victory in Multi 50 and Imoca – Route du Rhum #RDR2014
COLLEGE MATCH RACING – Check out the Finals Race 5 – College Sailing Match Race Nationals 2014 with Georgetown vs. USF in the fifth race of the Finals. In the last race, with it dead even, one team breaks the cardinal rule after a daring ‘dial down’ on the final upwind leg. Who wins? Check out the video above!
VOR – As we wait for the 2nd Leg of the VOR to begin, here is a Full Replay of the In-Port race. You need 1.5 hours of time to watch the complete race so save it for tonight to enjoy.
DRAGON SAILING – Good winds and big seas met sailors on the first weekend of the Cascais Winter Series Act 1 with one Dragon sinking. Three races were sailed and the winners were Dmitry Samokhin/Andrey Kirilyuk/Aleksey Bushuev RUS ahead of Alvaro Marinho POR and Ferenc Kis HUN. For a more on the race (in Portugese) Click Here!
STAR SAILING – Who else has been invited and will attend the 2014 Star Sailors League final coming the first week of December? It’s Josh Junior! An easy to remember name that is actually Joseph Jon Joshua Junior, something of a record number of Js in anyone’s initials. A warm, bright, open character who is both extremely cordial and very, very competitive. Josh Junior made his sailing bones at the Worser Bay Boating Club in Wellington, having been encouraged into the sport by his father’s passion.
He started off with the Optimist and then the 420 before moving on to the Laser for which he earned a silver medal in the 2007 ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships in his last year at school. Since 2008, he has been moving continent to continent, alternating study, work and training. He finished 11th in the Laser Worlds in Canada in 2009, having financed the trip himself.
The following year, 2010, all the hard work really paid off when he was sixth in the Worlds in Britain and second in the ranking even though he unfortunately did not qualify for the Olympics. Since 2012, Josh Junior has been focusing on youth training and promoting his native city through the Wellington Spirit Sailing Team. In the same period, he moved onto the Finn also, taking home impressive results such as a ninth place finish in 2013 and fifth this year in the World Championships (he was the best of the non-Europeans) behind class experts, and old and new faces from the Star Sailors League. Josh Junior also took a major victory in the Worlds test event at Santander in 2013.
Josh Junior quotes: “I had a great season in the Finn, and finishing fifth at this year’s Worlds was really cool. I never sailed in the Star before, but I am really looking forward to a new and exciting challenge, and the Bahamas won’t be too bad either! “It is going to be really amazing to race against some of the world’s most famous sailors. Torben Grael and Robert Scheidt have achieved a lot and are two people I really look up to, so to get the opportunity to race them will be incredible.”
ROUTE du RHUM – The next solo finisher on La Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe should finish Tuesday evening or night but the big question remains who it will be. With both having around 450 miles to race this morning will it be Alessandro di Benedetto in the IMOCA 60 class or will it be the Class 40 leader Alex Pella (pictured above).
The Catalan soloist Alex Pella (Tales 2 Santander) has had an incredible race. Not only has he now left his rivals behind but he is threatening to overtake the IMOCA 60 of Alessando di Benedetto (Team Plastique) which of course is 20 feet longer. Pella had a close battle with Kito de Pavant (Otio Bastide-Medical) and Thibault Camus Vauchel (Partners in Platoon) but recently has extended steadily in the downwind conditions, and this morning is over 110 miles ahead of Camus Vauchel, who in turn has 25 miles on Kito de Pavant,
In the Rhum Class the battle is always an intens one between Italian Andrea Mura (Vento di Sardegna), the British knight Sir Robin Knox-Johnston (Grey Power) and Wilfrid Clerton (Cape to Cape Location) always in mind. The winds are good for the majority of the fleet, but behind the Finn Ari Huusela (Neste Oil) it is getting lighter again.
Thibaut Vauchel Camus – Partners in Platoon (Class40) – 2nd on the 4:00 rankings
“The winds are quite variable, it is stressful between the squalls. Overall it’s better than what it was. At night, we have no moon. Unfortunately I am now quite far behind first place Alex (Pella)who has done an incredible job. I got back a little yesterday afternoon but that, unless a major incident, it’s too late for me. The real break was the passage of the ridge at Madeira. There, it was very unstable with many grains, Alex played it well, made mny gybes and pulled away. Currently I am in the South but I will, finally arriving at 24 North on the West Indies. Overall I am satisfied. I have a good place. But to be honest there I am fatigued. I made about four hours of sleep between five naps. I have to stay vigilant and manage the fatigue best I can. I expect there will be some emotion arriving in Guadeloupe by sea as I know it well, I lived there and started sailing there.”
Tanguy de Lamotte – Initiatives Coeur (IMOCA) – 7th on 4:00 rankings: “I should be there on Tuesday. Alex Pella is still 40 miles ahead and I am roughly 100 miles behind Alessandro. Even if our boats are different that is a lot to catch up. My goal is to have learned a lot about my boat which is new to me.”
M24 RACING – Brian Porter’s Full Throttle team grabs their sixth Melges 24 U.S. National title with a race to spare, and Kevin Nixon’s Accru+ recovers from a bad finish to secure the Corinthian title.
After a fun afternoon and evening of revelry on Saturday, the Melges 24 fleet wearily made it to the docks around 8 a.m. for an early 9:30 Sunday morning start. The goal was to take advantage of the remaining moon wind and sneak in 2-3 more races on the final day, settling the score in both the overall and corinthian fleets.
The Tampa heat rose quickly and the weak northerly died before a course was set, triggering the red and white AP flag. With dead calm waters until about 1:30 in the afternoon, there was plenty of good natured postering and lobbying from teams who wanted to race regardless of the conditions, and especially from those who would fare better by having the boats on the trailer. Just when it looked like the day would be a loss with the 15.00 time limit looming, a few silver fizzlers began to trickle from the southeast, and soon after there was a bonafide 6-8 kts.
After several restarts, the fleet got off clean and with Bora Gulari’s New England Ropes/West Marine Rigging tied with Porter’s Full Throttle, both boats started near the pin hoping to sail straight to the left corner for better pressure. Porter was able to roll over Gulari, forcing him to tack to the right where he was not able to recover, while Porter and Bruce Ayres” Monsoon stepped into a left shift on layline and didn’t look back. The race win between Gulari and Marty Kullman’s New Wave finishing eighth and nineth respectively was enough to seal the win for Porter and his team of Andy Burdick, Sam Rogers and Matt Woodworth with a race to spare.
On the Corinthian side, Kevin Nixon at the helm of Accru+ had a solid grip on the title with a six point lead, but after getting hung out on the right side, he suffered a tough seventeenth, leaving the door open for Ryan Glaze’s Gringo Sailing team. Glaze was not able to take advantage of the opportunity and summed up the racing, “Well, the first race was not worth the wait, we got stuck on the wrong side of the big left shift and had our worst race of the regatta (19th), then we turned around in the next race and had our best race of the regatta (6th). That’s the ebb and flow of life in sailing.” Kevin Nixon from Australia with his wife Glenda, daughter Bonnie, son Daniel and his girlfriend Christine are the 2014 U.S. National Corinthian Champions.
Despite the weak wind at times, the vibe of the Melges 24 fleet was hugely positive throughout the weekend, and poised for a resurgence. The 2015/2016 schedule glimmers with highlights being the Nationals set to take place in the world famous “Gorge” in Cascade Locks, Oregon in August 2015, and the 2016 World Championships at a location to be determined in South Florida.
THE CIRCUIT MOVES ON
Up next is Key West Race Week where 20 Melges 24 are registered. Taking place in warm Florida on January 18-23, KWRW is a showcase for this incredible sportboat, so register to compete now. The fun continues in St. Petersburg at the NOOD in February then arrives at a huge grand finale at the 2015 Melges Rocks Regatta on March 12-14. Online Registration is now available. Be there for the BIG MELGES ROCK PARTY!
A VERY SPECIAL THANKS
A very special thank you is extended to every team that attended the 2014 U.S. National Championship. Without you, this would not have been possible. Additional thanks to the great George Haynie, PRO Eric Robbins and the entire Davis Island Yacht Club’s league of volunteers. Thank you for making this one of the very best championships ever. As always the impeccable support of Melges USA was stellar as was J.J. Taylor distributors who made the beer boat at the end of racing cool and refreshing – jam packed with Heineken and Heineken Light! And last, but certainly not least – a special thanks to Bill and Jonny Goldsberry’s One Design Service for the use of their VSR during the event. If not for their generous support, the practically endless stream of photos, videos and on-the-water reporting via the USMCA Facebook Page could not have taken place. We hope everyone enjoyed it!
TOP TEN RESULTS – OPEN (After Eight Races, One Discard)
1.) Brian Porter, Full Throttle; 3-5-1-5-1-2-1-[32/DNS] = 18
2.) Bora Gulari, New England Ropes/West Marine Rigging; 1-1-2-4-4-5--1 = 18
3.) Marty Kullman, New Wave; 2-3-4-3-5-1--3 = 21
4.) Jeff Madrigali/Kevin Welch, Mikey; 6--6-2-2-3-2-8 = 29
5.) Bruce Ayres, Monsoon; 7--3-1-6-8-3-5 = 33
6.) Steve Rhyne, mojo; -7-5-6-6-3-21-5-2 = 49
7.) Kevin Nixon, Accru+; 10-2-16--9-4-17-7 = 65
8.) Ryan Glaze, Gringo; 9-18-8--7-7-19-6 = 74
9.) Steve Boho, The 300; -12-14-8-8-10-12-15 = 79
10.) Scott Foxman, Relentless; 12-17-11-7--15-10-10 = 82
TOP THREE RESULTS – CORINTHIAN (After Eight Races, One Discard)
1.) Kevin Nixon, Accru+; 10-2-16--9-4-17-7 = 65
2.) Ryan Glaze, Gringo; 9-18-8--7-7-19-6 = 74
3.) Roger Counihan, Just Add Water; 5-25-9-14-11--7-16 = 87
View Full Results
View Full Entry List
View Full Corinthian Crew List
View Full Photo Gallery – JOY
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ROUTE de RHUM – Sir Robin has moved into 3rd place at the time of this post, but by a very small margin. Can he maintain 3rd or better? To follow his position to see if he can click here! Here is the latest report from Sir Robin below:
“We are getting more squalls now, usually with rain. The wind rises and veers, usually about 2 points of the compass ( 22 1/2 degrees), but we did have one very heavy rain squall where it shifted 5 points and for a while we were steering 260 degrees on the port tack,so, since I cannot set wind control of the compass I have to stay ready to turn downwind or we would be knocked on our side. “
“So I camped out in the cockpit, throwing my bed through the hatch every time it rained. These squalls will increase as we approach the Windies, and present a problem as far as sail setting is concerned, in the squalls we have too much sail, but between them them, when the wind subsides, we have too little. This is the weak point on this boat as with everything so big, a sail chage takes time, sometimes longer than the gap between the squalls and calms, so one tends to be cautious and inevitably lose speed.”
“We are now in the Tropics after all but its a pity man cannot work out how to get this rain land 2000 miles east of here. Busy night for shipping as well, as I saw 3 ships so we must be on a shipping lane. There may have been others when I was dozing but none came within the safety zone on my plotter whichs sets off an alarm, either from radar or AIS.”
“I forgot my seabird book which is annoying as there were two smallblack birds, the size of petrels, with a flash of white beneath the wing on the body, dancing around the boat. Probably chasing flying fish which have been jumping out of the water at our approach and then gliding along the top of the surface. They dont actively fly, but they build up speed in the water, launch themselves into the air, and then their extended pectoral fins act as wings. Its when they climb too high they land on deck and then usually die.”
SAILING HISTORY – The Yachting Season Opens with a ‘full sailing breeze’ and a sun dappled sea in 1933. Various shots of yachts 12 meters and J-boats at the Royal Harwich Yacht Clubs Regatta. They include The Royal racing yacht Britannia, Mr H Paul’s Astra, Shamrock V, The Valsheda with film of the yachts as they sail around the racing course. Nice shot of Britannia sailing by. Other shots of boats out on the water. Check out the fast jibes starting at 55 seconds in the video – Enjoy!
A-CLASS CATS – Here is a cool artistic video of the Low rider vs. foiling boats vs. tactical steel. The Berliner Yacht-Club hosted the A-Class 2014 Int. German Championship at Lake Wannsee this year. A fantastic event with excellent sailing conditions. Check out the new video above!
VOR – Highlights of the inside the harbor VOR 65 race – Check it out above!
UNTIE THE LINES – From ‘Untie the Lines’ weekly video update:
“KARL & me are heading east along the coast towards Colombia, stopping here and there at some more remote Kuna villages. Savouring the freshest seafood and dealing with the so called “culo de pollos” (squalls) that blow through here every week.”
Check out her update above!
FESTIVAL OF SAILS – Royal Geelong Yacht Club announces Rex Gorell Land Rover, as the Major Sponsor of the 2015 Festival of Sails.
The Royal Geelong Yacht Club has today announced Rex Gorell Land Rover Geelong as the Major Sponsor of the 2015 Festival of Sails, to be held between 17 – 26 January 2015.
Dealer Principal Jason Gorell said, “Rex Gorell Land Rover is very excited to have the opportunity to support Australia’s Premier Sailing Festival, as well as the chance to showcase Land Rover’s award winning range of vehicles on the spectacular Geelong Waterfront.”
As Major Sponsorship Partners, Rex Gorell Land Rover will be present with a fantastic display of their latest range of Land Rover vehicles, including an interactive experience called the Terrapod, where the public can drive a Land Rover around a creative and skilled course, built off the back of two truck semi-trailers! The TERRAPOD DRIVE EXPERIENCE has been used all around the world, from the UK to Hong Kong and is sure to be a feature of the 2015 festivities.
Festival of Sails Chairman and Rear Commodore of the Royal Geelong Yacht Club, Paul Smart, commented, “We are over the moon in entering into this wonderful partnership with Rex Gorell Land Rover.
The Gorell family has a deep and proud history within the Geelong community. They are hugely respected and as such, it is an honour to have Rex Gorell Land Rover as the Major Sponsor for the 2015 Festival of Sails.
It is a great fit for both organisations and Greater Geelong as a whole community”
In regards to the Festival, the people of Geelong and the entire region, should be immensely proud that we as a community, continue to show the nation, and indeed the world, that we can produce such incredible, exciting and sustainable events.”
The 2015 Festival of Sails will see more than 320 Keelboats, racing on our Corio Bay in more than 20 classes and 2500 competitors.
There is also a huge shoreside festival FREE for the public, attracting more than 100,000 people over the weekend, with more than 90 stalls, food, beverage, bands, fireworks on the Sunday night, and plenty of street entertainment throughout Steampacket Gardens, Fairnie Park, Eastern Beach and Transvaal Square and the surrounding waterfront precinct.”
The event, which is supported by the City of Greater Geelong and the State Government of Victoria, will kick off with the exciting and iconic Melbourne to Geelong Passage Race, on Friday 23rd January 2015.
The Festival of Sails, is the largest keel boat regatta in the Southern Hemisphere, and is the oldest sporting event in Victoria, the first passage race being run in 1844, earlier than the Melbourne Cup, America’s Cup and Ashes to name but a few.
The Royal Geelong Yacht Club is the owner and facilitator of the Festival of Sails, and looks forwards to the community again enjoying the wonderful entertainment, stalls, fireworks and of course the high class sailing competition over the Australia Day weekend.
Notice of Race available at: http://festivalofsails.com.au/sailing-regatta/race-documents
Enter here: http://festivalofsails.com.au/enter-online-update-your-entry
AC NEWS – Jimmy Spithill has again claimed the next America’s Cup will be the toughest to win. But before that the Oracle Team USA skipper will have a scaled-down re-match, with Team New Zealand to contend with.
When speaking to an Aussie who loves to get under the skin of Kiwis, what better place to start than rugby league?
“It was a tough game, yeah,” says Spithill. “It seems like there’s just not much left for us now.”
18 FOOTERS – Winds gusting to 40-knots forced Australian 18 Footers League officials to abandon today’s Chris Webb Memorial Trophy 18ft Skiff race on Sydney Harbour.
Despite the conditions, the Smeg team of David Witt, Tom Clout and Matt Wark decided to show their heavy weather skill and took to the harbour alone.
As a former Round-the-World sailor, Witt is no stranger to what’s required in such testing winds.
Later, he said: “We sailed what would have been the course for the day and didn’t have a swim”.
“We were comfortable”.
For those of us who could remember back to Witt’s very first race as a 17-year-old in 1988 it was no surprise.
On that day he took an old skiff in conditions not unlike that of today and finished second, behind Michael Walsh’s Prudential in a race for the club championship.
Next Sunday is Race 3 of the Australian 18 Footers League Club Championship, with the club’s usual spectator ferry leaving Double Bay Wharf at 2.15pm.
Australian 18 Footers League
ROUTE du RHUM – His swan song race on the IMOCA60 Safran sees Marc Guillemot finish in third place in the IMOCA 60 Class just as he did four years ago on the same boat. Jeremy Beyou finished last night in second place on Maitre Coq. Guillemot arrived in Pointe a Pitre extremely tired having suffered many technical problems, especially towards the end after his autopilots failed and he had to hand steer for much of the last four days. It is the second time in a row he has finished third in the IMOCA 60 class.
For the remainder of La Route du Rhum fleet the winds are becoming a little more stable which is to the good of Spain’s Alex Pella who leads Class40 on Tales 2. His runway towards the finish line in Guadeloupe becomes slightly more straightfoward in easier Trade Winds as his leading delta now amounts to 10% of the remaining mileage – now around 80 miles ahead of Thibault Vauchel Camus (Solidaires en Peloton) and Kito de Pavant (Otio-Bastide Medical) who are locked on the same mileage to the finish line.
For Guillemot the moments arriving in Pointe-a-Pitre were bittersweet. He left Saint Malo wanting a win for his final race in the colours of Safran on a boat which broke new ground in 2007, as the first of the collaboration between Guillaume Verdier and VPLP which went on to also produce the Vendee Globe winner and runner up. After having to retire from the Vendee Globe within the first few hours when his keel broke, Guillemot was determined to have a winning finish to his seven year relationship with his boat and racing in Safran’s colours. But a whole series of techncial issues left him on the back foot, always dealing with problems:
Marc Guillemot: “This race really did become a battle, not the kind of fight I had expected. I had to struggle with the boat and all the technical problems I had. And it seemed like all the problems were linked, a downward spiral if you like. I really questioned at 950 miles from here, what do I do? I have no more power, I was no longer really in the race. But you have to fight on, little by little you deal with the problems. You learn how to manage them and keep racing. And so in the end I feel like I fought well. So well done me! I think in the end I have had a good race, managing all the situations. With this boat I have had problems but rarely ones which force me to retire. I do like to see that I finish races. This is my fifth Rhum and my fifth finish. So I am not unhappy. At the start it is the result, the finish that matters and in end the conditions are beautiful and you have the satisfaction of finishing.”
“This is a boat that is so good, so beautiful, well built, well thought through by all those who participated: the architects, and Verdier VPLP and the Safran team. This is a great boat that still has a long career ahead of him. It will be seen in other colours in other races. This is a bit of me this boat. It is not completely the end of my association with Safran: there is a new skipper happens, a new boat, which may be in need of my services. If this is not the case, I would go somewhere else because I want to sail, I dont want to be on shore.”
“I have dirty hands for 950 miles before the finish. Four times a day, I recovered oil in to theengine and replaced it with a small can of Coke. And each time that gave me 20 minutes of charging before the engine stopped. At times i had the face of a mechanic with oil everywhere ”
In fourth place Armel Tripon (For Humble Heroes) is around 100 miles to the finish line. The skipper who is on his first IMOCA race stayed with the leaders well to the Azores. A former Figaro and Mini sailor who has eyes on the next Vendee Globe he has contained Louis Burton (Bureau Vallee). Les Sables d’Olonne based Alessandro di Benedetto (Team Plastique-AFM Telethon) is still struggling to get 100% from his older, less powerful IMOCA monohull, suffering problems , not least with his pilot. But he keeps his pace up enough to more or less keep Tanguy de Lamotte at bay, but perhaps not for long enough.
Alex Pella seems to be increasingly comfortable on the rapid Botin design at the head of the Class 40 fleet in the downwind Trades conditions. But the second and third places are still open, Thibaut Vauchel-Camus (Solidaires en Peloton) and Kito de Pavant (Otio-Bastide Medical) are trading gybes while another trio are having a great tussle behind. Barcelona bred Pella, who has the advantage of two Mini Transats and one two handed round the world race to his credit, is expected to finish Wednesday 19th in the very small hours of the morning.
Anne Caseneuve (Aneo) has enough of a lead now at 539 miles that she can afford not to have to push too hard. WIth 950 miles to go her 50 foot trimaran is making 13kts averages. Wilfred Clerton (Cap au Cap location) is second but Britain’s Sir Robin Knox Johnston is among the trio which is converging together on the Tropic of Capricorn, just a handful of miles apart, scrapping over third.
Sardinia’s Andrea Mura (Vento di Sardegna) is back on to his game after some poor decisions took him into light winds, stuck in the Azores. Sir Robin Knox-Johnston (Grey Power) is dicing wiht the little yellow trimaran Jean-Paul Froc (Berto Group). At the middle of the course it is amazing to see this cocktail of Rhum class boats racing so closely.
Safran in Numbers:
Marc Guillemot crossed the finish line of La Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe at 14:59:20hrs UTC this Saturday 15th November to secure third place in the IMOCA 60 Class. His elapsed time for the 3542 NM course is 13d 1h 59m 20s making an average of 11.28kts. In reality he sailed 4056 NM at an average of 11.28kts. His delta behind the IMOCA class winner Francois Gabart is 21h20m25s.
It is ‘Marco”s fifth Route du Rhum (4th in 1998 in the ORMA, 2nd in 2002 in the ORMA, 7th in 2006 in the IMOCA, 3rd in 2010 in the IMOCA). His course again showed his tenacity and drive for his final race on this boat in the colours of Safran. Even with a number of technical problems he stayed tight in the top trio. He arrived in Pointe a Pitre in a state of considerable fatigue having had no pilots for the final 72 hours. And, weirdly, it is the third time that he has arrived in Pointe a Pitre on the 15th November.
Alex Pella, Class 40 – Tales 2: “We are now at 20 degrees North and so into the proper Trade Winds. Yesterday I had some problems with the wind because I had got too close to the high pressure and I had no wind and the guys in the south were going faster than me. But now it is going better, I have a better angle but yesterday I had still a good angle but not enough wind pressure. We have three boats up here in the north and maybe we got a bit close to the high pressure because it moved south and caught us. I am comfortable now, the winds are better and the boat is fast. I am in a very comfortable position. I will keep pushing to the end but I feel quite confident now. There is no pressure from Spain. I know I have so much support from friends and family. I am so happy with this 100 per cent Spanish boat owned, designed and built in Spain. Everyone is from Spain. But this race is so long and so fast, I need to finish to win.”
Miranda Merron (GBR) eighth Class 40 Campagne De France: “It is very hot and every time I seem to gybe then the wind seems to conspire against me about 20 minutes after I gybe. I have had some squalls between sundown and sunrise and some of them have been good for me, making 13-14kts towards Guadeloupe but then behind there is no wind and it seems like all those miles gained are then lost. It is all about taking the helm when it gets too windy for the autopilot.
Really I am quite fatigued. Earlier on I had a reef in the main and I was looking at it going ‘Should I shake it?’ And in the end I did but 20 minutes later it was 20kts again. And so I am trying to minimise unneccessary manouvres. But going in the right direction does not count as unneccessary manouvres! It depends how the conditions are. At night it is very dark with only half a moon so you really cant just go to sleep. If there are squalls on top then you really have to be there.”
Jeremy Beyou (Maitre Coq): “My team worked well on the boat to get it back into shape. Given the season I have had, then this second place is really nice. It is certainly not easy to go from La Solitaire du Figaro to the Route du Rhum. I enjoyed the challenge and for the long term gain I think that this will be one of my strengths, my assets. It enhances my capacity. When it is hard I dont hold back. It is always good to be racing others, it is IMOCA. It allows you to develop strategies and benchmarks, to learn the angles and the crossovers and how hard to press. These things then are repeatable. The problem then, of course, is that is now four years to the next Route du Rhum and it is hard then to repeat some of these learnings. But of course on La Solitaire then you can. The best moments are always the rankings when you have gone well. It was hard this Rhum. There is definitely a speed difference with Francois but we make progress. The next two years with think of nothing else than the Vendee Globe.”
CANOE SAILING – Check out the performance and fun of this high performance sailing canoe WITHOUT A RUDDER! Great sailing and surfing footage in Hawaii of the Tiger Canoe V3. These guys want to make this class into a new sport. Looks fun to us!
VOR – The marathon front-runners sure can sprint as well. Ian Walker’s offshore leaders proved to the rest of the seven-strong fleet that they are currently masters closer to land too, winning the Cape Town In-Port race on Saturday after yet another thrilling finish.
Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing already lead the hunt for the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 trophy after claiming victory in Leg 1 last week and now they are looking to be serious contenders for the in-shore series silverware. The changes onboard MAPFRE did not help, last coming into Cape Town in Leg 1, again bringing up the rear in the around bouy racing.
The fleet was split from the start in challenging conditions in Table Bay, under the famous Table Mountain, with winds veering dramatically between 12 and 20 knots and rain clouds threatening throughout.
‘The team from the Emirates have already shown they can make the right decisions under the toughest of pressure’
Briton Walker opted for a port line early in the sprint for the first mark and it paid immediate dividends as they and Team SCA raced clear.
The team from the Emirates have already shown they can make the right decisions under the toughest of pressure by edging out Dongfeng Race Team by just 12 minutes in a thrilling Leg 1 climax last week, after 25 days of sailing from Alicante to Cape Town.
After some 20 minutes of racing on Saturday, they already looked like they had the points in the bag, especially after one of the rivals for the in-port series prize, Team Alvimedica, suffered a tear in their jib.
Charlie Enright’s team had triumphed in the opening in-port race in Alicante back on October 4 but this victory puts Abu Dhabi now back on top of the points table with three (lowest is best).
‘He and his crew were plainly giving it 110 percent as they scrambled with the women of Team SCA’
The battle for second place soon grabbed the attention of most with Team SCA and Team Brunel in a rare old shootout after the Dutch found a burst of pressure midway round.
Team Brunel’s skipper Bouwe Bekking told a press conference on Friday that the in-port series was not a big priority for him.
Ha! Yeah right. He and his crew were plainly giving it 110 percent as they scrambled with Team SCA for the second rung of the poldium.
But these women are very, very determined and as their skipper Sam Davies explained on Friday, strong winds certainly don’t scare them after they did most of their pre-race training in similar conditions in Lanzarote.
A problem with a gennaker failing to unfurl cleanly finally scuppered their efforts to keep Bekking and co at bay and Team Brunel made one final effort to catch Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing up front.
Once again, Walker was ready for the challenge and by the finish line had a winning margin of a couple of hundred metres from Team Brunel with Team SCA in third.
Dongfeng Race Team raced home ahead of Team Vestas Wind and Team Alvimedica with MAPFRE, last coming into Cape Town in Leg 1, again bringing up the rear.
The Spanish crew, unlike most of us, will be glad to farewell Table Mountain. For Walker and his Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, they would be glad to do the rest of their sailing in this sailing-crazy city.