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30 May 2012

North Atlantic drubbings—Sailing News from the U.S. and Beyond

Ryan Godfrey braces for impact no the main pedestal. Onboard PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG during leg 7 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12, from Miami, USA to Lisbon, Portugal. (Credit: Amory Ross/PUMA Ocean Racing/Volvo Ocean Race)  Amory Ross/Puma Ocean Racing/Volvo Ocean Race©
Competition is fierce amongst the fully crewed, around-the-world Volvo Ocean Race (VOR) fleet, which is now quickly closing on Lisbon, Portugal and the end of Leg Seven, which is their last serious offshore leg of this edition of the race. At the time of this writing, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing was leading Puma Ocean Racing and Groupama 4 by less than fifty miles, with the leg straggler—Team Sanya—a mere 65 miles out of contention. Given that teams have been rolling 500-mile days on this leg, the final miles to Lisbon will be quickly reduced, thus adding a highly combustible accelerant to an already-blazing competitive fire.

'Now, how much fun is this leg?,' asked Puma Ocean Racing's skipper, Ken Read, from aboard the team's Volvo Open 70, Mar Mostro. 'Not a lot. Groupama had a big lead only to get ground down. Telefónica had a big lead only to get smoked by a weak front that approached from the rear and they were last out of the old breeze. Now Abu Dhabi is in the unenviable position of being way ahead with a front that has come from the back at almost exactly the same speed as [a] Volvo 70—22 knots or so. And they are the unfortunate benefactors of this breeze last. Which means that their lead is hemorrhaging at this stage.' Get the full VOR report, inside this issue.
Day 9 - Pure speed on board Groupama 4 - Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 Leg 7  Yann Riou/Groupama Sailing Team © /Volvo Ocean Race


Also offshore, the Global Ocean Race fleet is preparing to tussle with a serious low-pressure system that's forecasted to generate 50-knot winds and large seas. 'We're being stalked by a deepening depression in the North Atlantic that will hit us tomorrow with anything up to 50 knots,' reported Cessna Citation's co-skipper, Conrad Coleman. 'Despite sailing through some really strong conditions in the Southern Ocean legs, this is the first time I've seen the single, triangular wind barb [Force 10 ‘Whole Gale' 55-63mph] for 50 knots on a forecasted storm that is about to hit. It doesn't look that scary from an armchair, but out here it really gets your attention!' Stay tuned for more info on how the four-strong fleet of Class 40s competing in the GOR fairs the blow, and take the time to savor your armchair as these boats will be anything but comfortable for the foreseeable future.

Today Richard Gladwell has exclusive views from the Emirates Team NZ AC72 project.

And in One Design news, the amazing sailors who make up the newly re-branded US Sailing Team Sperry Top Sider are putting in their final hard miles as the calendar rapidly counts down to this summer's Olympic medal races. 'With 60 days until the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony, every day of training and competition counts for US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider athletes,' said Dean Brenner, Chairman of the Olympic Sailing Committee and the US Olympic Sailing Team Leader, earlier this week in a press release. 'Over the past four years, our athletes and coaches have broken down their individual training plans to examine every detail required to perform at a high level. Now is when those plans come together and start to pay off.'

Finn World Masters 2012 Day 2 start  Robert Deaves /IFA

And finally, be sure to get the latest news from the Finn World Masters, the World Match Racing Tour's Match Race Germany, the Clipper Around the World Yacht Race, and the wrap-up report from the 67th edition of the annual Block Island Race, inside this issue.

May the four winds blow you safely home,


David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor



Volvo Ocean Race - Groupama snatch second place
Franck Cammas,
Volvo Ocean Race team Groupama 4 have moved into second place on the tenth day of racing in the seventh leg from Miami to Lisbon. A day and a half from the scheduled finish on Thursday evening, the fleet is having to confront a zone of calms which it is impossible to avoid. This passage of some one hundred miles or so could well reshuffle the cards as the deficits have been slowly shrinking since... [more]
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Skandia Sail for Gold - Cream of world sailing head to Weymouth
Jo Grindley,
Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta 2012 - The waters of Weymouth Bay and Portland Harbour will be filled with the stars of sailing over the next couple of weeks as the team's training camps at the 2012 Olympic venue turn serious with the final pre-event. The annual event will this year feature almost all of the medal contenders for the upcoming Games.... [more]
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America's Cup: Emirates Team NZ's AC72 expected in mid-June
Warren Douglas,
Emirates Team New Zealand will take delivery of its first AC72 catamaran by the middle of next month. The mammoth cat will then be assembled – it will arrive at the base as components - and undergo a rigorous testing regime before an official launch planned for late July.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Small victories for Puma's Mar Mostro
Amory Ross,
Volvo Ocean Race, Day 10 of Leg 7. Amory Ross, MCM for Puma Ocean Racing powered by Berg, reports on the crew's progress: Five hundred miles to go and this race is only getting closer. Not exactly a surprise – we knew everyone was going to compress again – but what is a surprise is the kind of day we had yesterday: it was slow, sloww, slowww.... [more]
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Gladwell's Line: America's Cup – Emirates Team NZ AC72 unveiled +Video
Richard Gladwell,
Our first America's Cup build preview was in mid-1985. On show was the first of what were to become the Plastic Fantastics, upside down in a shed in the Auckland suburb of Pakuranga. The media group were chaperoned around an upturned hull, which the New Zealand Challenge principals would have us believe was a wooden 12metre.... [more]
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Block Island Race - Great holiday sailing in 67th edition
Kirsten Ferguson,
For the 67th year, the Storm Trysail Club's Block Island Race, which started on Friday, May 25 at 1400, was a good excuse for sailors to start the long Memorial Day weekend early and no team was more pleased with how their holiday sailing went than Larry Dickie's (Greenwich, Conn.) aboard the Kerr 43 Ptarmigan, which won its class and took overall honors in IRC after making the traditional 186... [more]
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Finn World Masters - Maier remains on top form
Robert Deaves,
At the 2012 Finn World Masters, Michael Maier (CZE) continued his good form by winning both races on the second day in Pwllheli, North Wales, but he didn't have it all his own way. Maier leads after three races while Laurent Hay (FRA) is second and Allen Burrell (GBR) is third.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Pack whittles away at the leader
Volvo Ocean Race,
In the Volvo Ocean Race, with 689 nautical miles to go to the finish of Leg 7 in Lisbon, Portugal, the pace has increased today as the chasing pack went into attack mode and continued to whittle away at Ian Walker and Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing's tenuous lead. Groupama (Franck Cammas/FRA) and Telefónica (Iker Martínez/ESP) currently lying in second and first place overall, were back in the game,... [more]
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Global Ocean Race - Deep depression heads for fleet
Oliver Dewar,
Global Ocean Race teams are focussed on one weather feature; a deep depression heading for the fleet carrying winds of up to 50 knots forecast to arrive within the next 24 hours. In fourth place, the Dutch duo of Nico and Frans Budel have positioned Sec. Hayai far enough south to avoid the worst of the westerly winds spinning from the bottom of the system as it rolls east across the fleet... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Pure speed onboard Groupama 4
Franck Cammas,
Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12 fleet are being pushed along by a front, which is moving almost as fast as them. The crews are devouring the miles to such an extent that this seventh leg from Miami to Lisbon should see some 24-hour distance records being set.... [more]
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ISAF Sailing World Cup heads to Weymouth
ISAF,
Skandia Sail for Gold, the sixth of seven ISAF Sailing World Cup Regattas, is being held from 4 to 9 June 2012. Over 700 sailors from 60 nations will compete at the host venue of the London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition in Weymouth.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race - Keeping it together onboard Puma's Mar Mostro
Ken Read,
Volvo Ocean Race Leg 7, day 9. Skipper Ken Read reports from onboard Puma's Mar Mostro. You know what the best part of this race has been so far? The fact that this crew, without exception, still laughs at each others' jokes and seems to hit it off as if it was day one of the program.... [more]
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IFDS World Championships 2015 at Royal YC of Victoria
Yachting Victoria,
IFDS World Championships 2015 are to be hosted by the The Royal Yacht Club of Victoria (Royals). Royals is very proud and honored to be selected by the International Association for Disabled Sailing to host the 2015 championships. The IFDS World Championships will bring the ‘best of the best' of disabled sailing to Port Phillip as athletes fight for their spot in the 2016 Paralympic Games.... [more]
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Ben Ainslie - Amazing days in the life of triple Olympic Gold medalist
Aaron Child,
Three amazing days in the life of triple Olympic Gold medalist Ben Ainslie, as he takes his 10th World Championship title and is the first official torch bearer for the UK Olympic Torch Relay. Ben Ainslie has a lot of expectation sitting on him this summer. If he wins a fourth gold in Weymouth he could make history and become the World's most successful Olympic sailor since sailing was introduced... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: The van of the fleet closes on the fading falcon
Sail-World and Volvo Ocean Race,
Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing's Leg 7 lead was being steadily eroded on Monday, as the chasing pack lined up along an easterly moving cold front bringing strong winds. Up to 90 nautical miles ahead of their nearest rivals at one point, Ian Walker's Emirati team have been steadily losing ground as the new weather system brings the rest of the fleet up to them at average speeds over 20 knots.... [more]
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Clipper Round the World Race - Fleet complete Race 11 to New York
Isabel Hokken,
All of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race fleet have completed Race 11, from Panama to New York, over a period of fifteen hours with podium places going to Gold Coast Australia, followed by Visit Finland and De Lage Landen. The full Clipper Race fleet of ten matched 68-foot ocean racing yachts has now mustered at Liberty Landing, New Jersey, opposite the iconic Manhattan skyline before its... [more]
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Atlantic Cup - Mare emerges victorious
Jeff Pomeroy,
In the 2012 Atlantic Cup, Mare has dominated a record setting fleet of fifteen competitors, including number 118 Bodacious Dream (second place) and number 106 Gryphon Solo 2 (third place) to claim the second annual Atlantic Cup Championship and $15,000 in prize money.... [more]
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Spring College Sailing Nationals all set for May 30
Jennifer Mitchell,
The Intercollegiate Sailing Association's (ICSA) three national championships, Sperry Top-Sider ICSA Women's National Semi-Final and Final Championship, ICSA APS Team Race National Championship, and the ICSA Gill Dinghy National Championship commence Wednesday, May 30 with the Women's event, which will last for four days immediately followed by the Team Race Championship on June 3 and the Dinghy... [more]
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Atlantic Cup Inshore Series - Strong performance from GryphonSolo2
Joe Harris,
Atlantic Cup 2012, presented by 11th Hour Racing, final leg of the three stage race has drawn to a conclusion. Joe Harris onboard GryphonSolo2 provides a progress update: It was another great day of racing in Newport today as we concluded the Atlantic Cup regatta that began in Charleston three weeks ago... [more]
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London 2012 Olympics - US Sailing Team athletes head to Europe
Dana Paxton,
As the London Olympic and Paralympic Games countdown continues, US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider athletes are foregoing the traditional American Memorial Day holiday to mark the start of summer. Instead they are focusing on strengthening their preparation for the Games. Most Olympic class world championships took place in May, while June will bring the final World Cup at the Olympic Sailing Venue... [more]
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Golden Gate Bridge Anniversary - Oracle Team USA carry special message
Tim Jeffery,
Oracle Team USA's wingsailed AC45 catamaran, skippered by the Bay Area's John Kostecki, saluted the 75th anniversary of the 2013 America's Cup host city's most famous landmark- the Golden Gate Bridge on Sunday 27th May. In a weekend of celebrations, hundreds of boats took to the Bay, with thousands more enjoying entertainment all the way from Fort Point, Crissy Field and Marina Green.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: A drag race to Lisbon - but will Azzam last?
Sail-World and Volvo Ocean Race,
Abu Dhabi rocketed across the Atlantic overnight at speeds more than three knots quicker than their nearest rivals, notching up 338 nautical miles in 24 hours, while Team Sanya have shown a similar turn of pace and jumped to fourth.... [more]
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Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week - International entries received
Ben Cummings,
AAM Cowes Week 2012 - Competitors from across the globe will enjoy the fun and festivities of this year's Cowes Week in what is a very special year for Great Britain. Of the entries received so far, there is representation from Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the USA; all helping to give the regatta its international flavour.... [more]
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Farr 40 East Coast Championship - Groovederci emerges victorious
Tink Chambers,
The winner of the 2012 Farr 40 East Coast Championship has been decided. As Groovederci pulled into the docks at Bert Jabin's Yacht Yard, crew members from the other Farr 40 programs stopped what they were doing, stood and applauded. It was a testament to how popular owner John Demourkas has become within the class.... [more]
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