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VOR: Breaking News - from the U.S. and Beyond

Groupama Sailing Team sail along the African coast during leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12  © Yann Riou/Groupama sailing team

Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing has retired from Leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race on Friday having returned to racing early on Thursday following a dismasting on the first night.

The decision leaves four of the fleet of six still racing the first stage, the 6,500-nautical mile leg from Alicante, Spain to Cape Town. Team Sanya also pulled out after suffering substantial damage to the boat's hull on Sunday.

For the remaining sailors competing in the Volvo Ocean Race, the question is a simple one—go east or west? While taking the more easterly (inshore) course along the coast of Africa can potentially mean fewer miles of sailing, the wildcards are wind pressure and a reasonable passage through the Doldrums. According to sources who have sailed this leg before, boats that head inshore must eventually punch offshore in order to chase pressure and a fast passage across the equator. That said, Franck Cammas, the skipper of Groupama and the only skipper who has committed to the eastern track, is currently making trees on the entire fleet.

Ricgard Gladwell, our Editor at Large provides an interesting routing analysis (in a story which will hit our site in a little while) and it will be interesting to see how this decision shakes out in coming days as teams attempt to negotiate the sticky, often-frustrating Doldrums.

Stay tuned, and be sure to check out the VOR media blitz, inside this issue.

Meanwhile, more trouble is brewing in the already trouble-ridden International Laser Class Association. While the class struggles to deal with internal intellectual property rights issues and licensing disagreements, Laser sailors are dealing with mast sections that have been breaking with increasing regularity. Now, just a few weeks before Perth 2011—the key qualifying regatta for many aspiring Olympic sailors—it appears that the new sail and mast section, which had been one of sailing's worst-kept secrets, will not be ready for prime time even in 2012, and that sailors will be competing using the troublesome older rigs. One can only hope that mast failures do not impact Olympic dreams. Be sure to check out part one of Rob Kothe's in-depth report, in this issue.

ISAF President Goran Peterssen presents the Beppe Croce Trophy to Ding Schoonmaker (USA)  ISAF ©

Speaking of international competition, James 'Ding' Schoonmaker was awarded ISAF's prestigious Beppe Croce Trophy, which honors those who have made an outstanding contribution to the sport. Schoonmaker was presented his trophy from ISAF President, Göran Petersson. 'Since 1968, Ding has been an active member of the International Yacht Racing Union and now of course ISAF,' said Petersson. 'During his long and distinguished career with us, Ding has brought his wealth of experience and knowledge to so many aspects of the sport.' Schoonmaker's involvement in sailing dates back to the 1940s and includes a storied career sailing Stars, before becoming involved with ISAF in 1968. 'It has been a great pleasure to have the opportunity to participate as a competitor as well as an official in Olympic events. It is a great privilege to be honored for serving the sport that I love.'

Start of the Rolex Fastnet Race, Cowes, Isle of Wight, United Kingdom. Alex Thomson and Guillermo Altadill crew on the IMOCA 60 Hugo Boss design by Juan kouyoumdjian.  Christophe Launay ©

Also inside, get the full download on Sail Melbourne, where the U.S.team of Stuart McNay and Graham Biehl is leading the Mens 470 Class, ahead of the World Champions, the Clipper Around the World Race and the upcoming America's Cup World Series' San Diego event. Also, be sure to check in with the Transat Jacques Vabre fleet, where Jean Pierre Dick (Virbac-Paprec 3) and Alex Thomson (Hugo Boss) are locking horns in the hyper-competitive IMOCA 60 class, with only a few miles separating these two boats after many, many miles of storm-fraught racing.

May the four winds blow you safely home,


David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor



Volvo Ocean Race: Abu Dhabi forced to withdraw from Leg 1
Sail-World,
Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing retired from Leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race on Friday having returned to racing early on Thursday following a dismasting on the first night. The decision leaves four of the fleet of six still racing the first stage, the 6,500-nautical mile leg from Alicante, Spain to Cape Town. Team Sanya also pulled out after suffering substantial damage to the boat's hull on Sunday.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: The Riddle of the Routes
Richard Gladwell,
Less than a week into the Volvo Ocean Race, the classic is proving to be what everyone expected and more. Yes, there was the first night shenanigans, which have too often marred the start of Round the World races of various types out of the Med and Europe. While those incidents took some of the edge off the competition, the race on the water is proving to be what many expected.... [more]
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Perth 2011 - Not always happy families on Olympic class sailing scene
Rob Kothe & the Sail-World Team,
For the last five years a not very secret project has been aiming to deliver a better more durable Laser sail. The final prototypes have been tested for more than 18 months, they've passed with flying colours, its reported that the World Council unanimously voted for a routine equipment change a long time ago but the project is now very much stalled.... [more]
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James 'Ding' Schoonmaker Awarded ISAF Beppe Croce Trophy
ISAF Media,
ames ‘Ding' Schoonmaker (USA) today received the 2011 ISAF Beppe Croce Trophy – which honours an individual for their outstanding contribution to the sport of sailing. ISAF President Göran Petersson presented the trophy, which was first awarded in 1988 in memory of Beppe Croce, the ISAF President from 1969-1986, to Schoomaker at the 2011 ISAF Annual Conference in San Juan, Puerto Rico.... [more]
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ISAF Sailing World Cup – Light winds test crews at Sail Melbourne
Lauren Garnet,
Sail Melbourne - The final day of racing tomorrow, Saturday, is set for an exciting finish with the final positions in the majority of classes still to be decided. Light winds tested all of the crews on Port Phillip Bay with tight racing the highlight of day five.... [more]
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America's Cup: Emirates Team NZ fitting up for the wingsail tests
Emirates Team NZ,
Often we hear of the superb job and incredible hours put in by the support and shore teams for the America's Cup and other professional racing teams, but rarely do we get a look behind the shed door to see the teams work their magic. In this series of videos, Emirates Team NZ's boat builder Sean Regan explains some of the repairs and modifications being undertaken on the Emirates Team NZ's SL33s... [more]
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America's Cup World Series: Training days on San Diego Bay
Darrall Slater www.bayshots.com,
Darrall Slater of www.Bayshots.com provides this gallery of images from the training session ahead if the start of the America's Cup World Series in San Diego. Training continues towards the first races this weekend, however a storm front moving in may dampen the crowds down for the first events.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race speeds and winds increase
Volvo Ocean Race,
The Volvo Ocean Race fleet are finally able to fly and this evening at 2200UTC, the boats far out in the Atlantic are relishing the benefit of a little more wind in addition to making good progress on starboard tack at about seventeen knots. This is the sort of speed that is associated with these types high performance racing machines.... [more]
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Trophies and honors bestowed at CYC Race to Mackinac Awards Dinner
Rachelle Treiber,
At the 2011 Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac Awards Dinner, a sell-out crowd of close to four-hundred sailors, guests, and other sailing community members turned out to honor fellow sailors. The evening's theme was ‘A Celebration of Our Community' with the Dinner taking place on the 5th November in the Crystal Ballroom of the Hyatt Regency Chicago.... [more]
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ISAF President Göran Petersson delivers President's Report
ISAF,
President of the International Sailing Federation, Göran Petersson, delivered the President's Report to ISAF Council members during their first day of meetings at the 2011 ISAF Annual Conference held in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Read the full transcript of the President's Report below...... [more]
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Transat Jacques Vabre - Enjoying the Trade winds
Hélène Tzara,
The Transat Jacques Vabre's IMOCA 60 fleet have slipped into the second half of the race and the fight is on as the entire nine boat fleet begin to enjoy trade winds sailing. Even if they have remained fitful and shifty, after thirty-six hours rooted to a high pressure system, the five boat group to the south is off and racing again into decent breeze, trying to close to down the miles... [more]
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Mackinac boat Sociable honored with Arthur B. Hanson Rescue Medal
Jake Fish,
US Sailing has awarded the Arthur B. Hanson Rescue Medal to the crew of Sociable in Portsmouth, Rhode Island for their rescue of six sailors from the yacht WingNuts which capsized on Lake Michigan in the midst of a storm during the Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac on the night of July 17-18, 2011.... [more]
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America's Cup Uncovered: Episode 15 - A look at the USS Midway
ACM,
This week we meet Energy Team's bowman Christophe André; he takes us through his rigorous training regime. In just one week Christophe, Energy Team, and the rest of the America's Cup competitors will be racing in the 3rd of the inaugural America's Cup World Series events in San Diego. In San Diego we take a behind the scenes tour of the USS Midway.... [more]
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America's Cup World Series builds for San Diego
America's Cup Media,
Daily round up of all the news in the build up to the America's Cup World Series in San Diego starting from Monday 7th November... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Abu Dhabi makes a cautious restart to Leg 1
Volvo Ocean Race,
Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing are back in the game, resuming racing this morning five days after losing their mast in violent Mediterranean seas. The team, led by British double Olympic silver medallist Ian Walker, radioed Race Control at 0216 UTC to notify that they had resumed racing... [more]
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Tom Ehman of AC Oracle Racing to give presentation at LBYC
Rick Roberts,
On Thursday 10th November, the Managing Director of the Golden Gate Yacht Club America's Cup Committee Tom Ehman, will be at Long Beach Yacht Club to visit and discuss the 2013 America's Cup defense in San Francisco and the upcoming America' Cup World Series in San Diego which is set to take place from the 12-20 November.... [more]
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ISAF Conference confirms Weymouth dropped from World Cup circuit
Laura Kitching,
Weymouth and Portland's economy could suffer a £2million blow after being dropped from the Sailing World Cup Circuit. It could mean the end for Skandia's Sail for Gold regatta, which has grown to be one of the biggest and best attended events of the World Cup circuit, attracting a record entry of 1,049 sailors in 2011... [more]
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Hobie 16 and Hobie 20 North American Championships day 3
Rich McVeigh,
The third day in Ft. Walton Beach, Florida for the Hobie 16 and Hobie 20 North American Championships can only be described as light and lumpy. A combination of light winds and large waves presented a challenge for the sailors. The sailors were clearly amped up this morning and multiple general recalls were signaled. At times, it was difficult to just keep the boat moving.... [more]
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Transat Jacques Vabre - Can Hugo Boss and Virbac-Paprec 3 hang on?
Hélène Tzara,
Transat Jacques Vabre's leading crews in the IMOCA Open 60 class, Jean Pierre Dick and Alex Thomson were separated by fewer than three miles. Whether Virbac-Paprec 3 and Hugo Boss will hold on to their lead seems a wide open question.... [more]
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Sail Melbourne images by Teri Dodds
Sail-World.com,
Geelong photographer Teri Dodds was on water capturing all the action at Sail Melbourne.... [more]
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4th Annual Carlos Aguilar Match Race (CAMR) December 1 - 4
Carlos Aguilar Match Race,
Watch match-racing at its best in scenic Charlotte Amalie harbor when over a dozen of the world's best men and women's skippers will duel in Inter-Club (IC)-24s in the fourth Annual Carlos Aguilar Match Race (CAMR),... [more]
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RQYS - Regatta and Sailing Manager position available
RQYS media,
Queensland's leading yacht club, the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron (RQYS) in Australia, is seeking an experienced and self-motivated person to fill the fulltime role of Regatta and Sailing Manager.... [more]
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Introducing Tidal Chronoscope App for iPhone and Android
ChronGlobal,
A new app for Android and iPhone has been released from ChronGlobal called Tidal Chronoscope® that is slated to give the ability to know GPS Tide predictions as easily as the time. Designing this App came with one goal: Create an incredibly easy and simple way to instantly give you tide information at your very location at the touch of a screen, along with lunar and solar positions.... [more]
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