11 Sep 2008




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Editorial: Search Goes on for Missing Blessed Be

Blessed Be was heading from Noumra to Australia (see red routing) but searchers are unaware of which city  .
As the search goes on for the missing 42ft yacht Blessed Be, which was last heard from 19 days ago, fears grow for the fate of the two Australian sailors on board. It's only about 700 nautical miles from Noumea to the Australian coastline, so the two are well overdue.

A smorgasbord of news in this edition, not only from Australia but from all parts of the globe, including stories with practical advice for sailors – how to prepare your boat for bad weather, eco-friendly soda-blasting for your hull.

Brisbane's recent Boat Show surprised organisers at how well it went in the current economic climate, and Beneteau, unlike companies depending on powerboats, have forecast a great year in 2008 – maybe the rest of the world is rediscovering sailing boats!

While the cruising world waits for news of the two French sailors who are the latest kidnap victims of Somalian pirates, Andrew Mwangura, the keenest source of news from the murky world of Somalia, says that the pirates are seeking to swap the two sailors for the Somalians who were taken back to France to stand trial for piracy. Our 'Pirate Alert for Seafarers around the Horn of Africa' is vital reading for anyone wanting to make the transit this year. My guess is that there will be a plethora of yachts heading around the Cape of Good Hope.

Last time we printed a story about the sailing Grieves family, I was amused by the rush of emails from readers with comments. The Grieves are a family who DIDN'T find the cruising life 'all that it's cracked up to be'. In fact, only the husband/father of the family was finally left to bring the boat home. In this week's story, Juliet and Guy Grieve give their separate reactions to their adventure.

Sir Richard Branson, that able spin merchant adventurer, is about to try to set another record – this time a sailing record, and with his family on board. A couple of stories to make you alert on your own yacht – another sad death from a swinging boom, and a narrow escape by a Saudi Princess from her burning yacht.

Read on, enjoy, and.....

Sail safe!


Nancy Knudsen, Cruising Editor


Missing Blessed Be Update - Debris Not from Yacht
BW Media Roundup,
Would-be rescuers who located retrieved debris from 110 km off the Gold Coast say it's not from the missing yacht Blessed Be. The yacht, heading from Noumea to Australia, was last heard from on 23rd August, when the two crew contacted family by satellite phone.... [more]


Pirate Alert for Seafarers around Horn of Africa
Andrew Mwangura, Sailors Assistance Programme,
This Press Release/Alert was received today: A yacht similar to this one, the Carre D'as IV, was hi-jacked by Somali pirates on 03. Sept. 2008 in the Gulf of Aden and is now used to hunt for further prey. The Venezuela-registered, French-owned, 24 m 2-mast luxury sailing yacht, an Amel Super Maramu when she was hi-jacked in the Gulf of Aden, is not at Eyl as reported falsely.... [more]


Product of the Week: Eco-friendly Soda Blasting
BW Media,
In the past, the only way you could really clean, remove paint or some other unsightly material from the hull of your boat was to either chip it off, sand blast it, use harsh chemicals, or hand sand it until your arm fell off or your equipment failed. Now, there's Eco-friendly Soda Blasting... [more]


Preparing your boat for High Winds
BoatUS/Sail-World,
When high winds are threatening - and threatening they are in the Americas this week, with no less than three potential hurricanes threatening the shores - it pays to do everything you can to ensure that your boat is safe.... [more]


Brisbane Boat Show - You weren't missed!
Bob Wonders/Sail-World Cruising,
If you missed the 48th Brisbane International Boat Show(August 27-31), organisers at Marine Queensland aren't too worried. They have expressed satisfaction with the interest and sales generated in the current economic climate.... [more]


Update: Kidnapped French Sailors taken to Eyl
Reuters Africa,
Somali pirates are taking a French yacht with two French nationals onboard as well as another hijacked ship to their remote coastal base, a regional government official said on Thursday. US$1million is being demanded in ransom... [more]


Next Generation GlobalFix™ iPRO Approved
BW Media,
Fort Lauderdale based ACR Electronics has received FCC approvals and will soon begin shipping the GlobalFix™ iPRO, a patented, next generation 406 MHz EPIRB featuring breakthrough technology that makes it the first EPIRB in the world to offer an exclusive Digital Display Screen and Dual GPS capabilities.... [more]


Glad to be Home - Sailing Grieves tell their Story
Juliet and Guy Grieve, Telegraph/Sail-World,
Are you tired of reading all those stories of cruising couples who break the ties, go sailing and never regret it? How fantastic it is for families, especially for the children, to experience the joys and freedoms of cruising, using distance learning? Well, you'll be glad to know there IS another side to the story - some families are ambivalent about it, and don't mind telling you why.... [more]


Sailor's Boom Death on 27ft boat
Des Ryan,
The latest sailor's death caused by a swinging boom is yet another reminder of the potential dangers of booms at sea. Short of sailors wearing crash helmets, it is an ever present potential for harm.... [more]


Beneteau Still Sailing Well
BW Media,
Not everyone is suffering reduced sales in the maritime industry. One of the world's largest boating groups, Beneteau, has reported 'outstanding' results in 2008 so far, in spite of weakened global financial situations in most countries.... [more]


Branson to Go for Atlantic Sailing Record
BW Media,
British billionaire Sir Richard Branson is back in the business of chasing speed records on the high seas — this time with his family. The chairman of the Virgin Group announced Thursday that he'll attempt to break the record for a trans-Atlantic crossing in a single-hulled sailing boat... [more]


Princess escapes from Burning Yacht
BW Media,
A Saudi Arabian princess has narrowly missing immolation in a megayacht on which she had been cruising the Greek Islands.... [more]


Rallies, Rallies, Rallies - Now the Caribbean 1500
Nancy Knudsen,
Travelling the ocean as a solo yacht is inspirational – but you don't have to always 'go it alone', and rallies the world over are popular for veterans and novices alike. Frequently, the successful rally will go at the most opportune time in the season– witness the most successful 'Atlantic Rally for Cruisers', the 'Darwin to Kupang' and the 'Med Red Rally', and it's the same with 'Caribbean 1500'... [more]


Free Trailer for Christmas
BW Media,
Public Announcement: Whittley Marine Group is offering the ultimate Christmas gift for 2008 – a free trailer with every Whittley Cruiser or Sea Legend delivered before 31 December. The offer is available from Whittley's exclusive premium dealers around Australia, and applies to all four Sea Legend and five Cruiser models.... [more]



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