Newsletter - 31 Dec to 6 Jan 2008

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07 Jan 2008

Major Events

2007 America's Cup


Keelboat Events

Offshore Events

Gear & Gadgets

Clipper 07-08 Round the World Race

2007-08 Barcelona World Race

2008 Sail Melbourne International Regatta

Yachting News


Happy New Year

While the UK shivers, Australia and New Zealand are into the shades and sun hats and lots of fabulous sailing.

Take a look at the fantastic images from the 12ft Skiffs - this extreme dinghy has been making some waves in the UK the last couple of seasons, and you can see why - just wish we had those conditions.

Sail Melbourne has kicked off with the 49er and 29er Worlds completing their qualifying rounds and into the serious stuff. The Tornados are sailing in the Australian Championships before they travel over to New Zealand for the 2008 Worlds to be staged off Takapuna in February.

Also down under are the International Canoe Worlds. With the class heavily involved in deciding on the way forward for this long lived class, the new Development Class sailors have been showing the Standard ICs some considerable pace - strong winds have delayed the final races.

On the Round the World scene, Thomas Colville has had to pullout of his attempt, only minutes after breaking Francis Joyon's 24 hour record. Joyon meanwhile continues to fly, now under 5,000 miles to go and still 3,000 miles ahead of Ellen MacArthur’s record.

Gerald New
UK Editor

Thomas Colville abandons Record attempt
Thomas Coville discovered last night shortly before 00:02 hrs, that the starboard float of Sodeb'O had lost its crash-box, perhaps following a collision with a growler.... [more]

Vallings and New Zealand win 12 Ft Skiff Interdoms
Shaun Sheldrake,
Alex Vallings & Jeremy Smith (Nuplex - NZL) convincingly won the 12 Foot Skiff Interdominions on Wellington harbour over the weekend, winning seven of the ten races sailed. Vallings said there was no single aspect to his and Smiths campaign that led to their dominance of this year’s regatta, but a culmination of a number.... [more]

Filip Matika CRO is Laser 4.7 World Champion
Event media,
The predicted stronger winds for the Friday of the event came through for the final day of the Laser 4.7 World Championships. Overall regatta leader Andraz Gulic (SLO) slipped to 8th overall and it was Filip Matika of Croatia's day as he moved up into first place with his results of 4th and 5th... [more]

IC Worlds on Hold,
With the minimum five heats completed the International Canoe Worlds are official. Perhaps just as well as strong winds have kept the fleets ashore again at MacCrae YC. Hayden Virtue (AUS) leads the standard IC, Chris Maas (USA) the Development class and John Robson the Asymmetric event... [more]

America's Cup: The Next Step for Valencia
Valencia Life,
After presenting the results of the 32nd edition of the Americas Cup, there apparently now hangs a considerable element of doubt as to whether the 33rd edition will be held in Valencia. Gerardo Camps, the Conseller for the Economy stated yesterday that there does exist the possibility of withdrawing from the contract, but not altering it, but that any changes that take place should be agreed betwe... [more]

McMillan and Howden move to 3rd at Aussie Tornados
Di Pearson /,
Darren Bundock and Glenn Ashby (AUS) posted another win and a third place to increase their lead by an incredible nine point margin. The British crew of Leigh McMillan and Will Howden (GBR) moved into third place overall, obviously in their element in the stronger southerly winds which peaked at around 23 knots this afternoon... [more]

Images from Worser Bay: 12ft Skiffs Race 10
Garrick Cameron,
More images from the superb camera of Garrick Cameron, of the final race of the 12ft Skiff Interdominion. held on Worser Bay, Wellington. The event was won by Nuplex (Alex Vallings and Jeremy Smith, NZL). New Zealand also won the John Brooke Trophy for the best Team. Competitors from New Zealand, Australia and Great Britain took part in the event.... [more]

Aussies take lead at 29er Worlds qualifiers
Di Pearson /,
Despite a tough day on the water at the 29er Worlds in Melbourne, three British teams remain in the top five after the 20 knot southerly conditions put many upside down. Bleddyn Mon and Tom Humphreys ahd a first and second to move into fifth, while Max Richardson and Alex Groves had a seond and fourth to go third... [more]

Aussie retain 49ers World's lead
Di Pearson,
Qualification races finished at the 49er worlds today and tomorrow the fleets will be divided into Gold, Silver and Bronze fleets; the top 25 sailors going into the gold fleet to race of for the Championship title over the next three days.... [more]

Morrison and Rhodes lead GBR qualifiers at 49er
Di Pearson,
Qualification races finished at the 49er worlds Saturday and tomorrow the fleets will be divided into Gold, Silver and Bronze fleets - Three of the British teams qualified for the Gold fleet. Steve Morrison and Ben Rhodes were in third place, Mark Asquith and Paul Cambell-Jones in 11th and John Pink and Simon Wheeler 16th... [more]

Images from the 2008 49er Worlds,
The 2008 49er Worlds are being sailing at Sorrento in Melbourne as part of Sail Melbourne. Here is a selection of images from event photographer Jeff Crow of Sport The Library... [more]

Coville - 'Northerly ice shows Global Warming' -event media,
Thomas Coville, in north-drifting ice: 'At 48° 45 South and 10° 19 East, I am an eyewitness to this infamous global warming. As far as I can remember, I’ve never seen ice so far North during this season.'... [more]

Bundock and Ashby lead on Day 1 Melbourne Tornado
Di Pearson /,
Darren Bundock and Glenn Ashby (AUS) won both races at the Tornado Asia Pacific Races in Melbourne. The Australian pair were chased home by Tino and Niko Mittelmeier of Germany in the first race and by Mitch Booth and Pim Nieuwenhuis of the Netherlands in the second.... [more]

Liverpool take lead in downwind conditions
Clipper Event media,
The battle for the top positions is continuing with Liverpool 08 and New York overtaking Hull & Humber in between the midnight and 0600 GMT schedules. This is predominantly due to the slightly stronger breeze that the two leading yachts are enjoying at the moment and their tactical decision to stay further east... [more]

America's Cup: Impact on the Valencian Economy
Valencia Life,
Gerardo Camps, the Economy Conseller, yesterday gave a press conference during which he outlined the financial results of the America's Cup in a 27-page report from the Valencian Finance Institute. Overall, the impact of the Cup was ten times that of the previous time it was staged in New Zealand... [more]

Hayden Virtue (AUS) continues to lead IC Worlds
Christian Knott,
Big waves but little wind for heat six of the International Canoe Worlds taking place in Australia - Hayden Virtue (AUS) continues to lead. The Australians have officially issued a challenge for the 'International Challenge Cup' (the second oldest trophy is sailing, to the Americas Cup) and the definding nation Great Britain has accepted the challenge... [more]

Peters/Fitzgerald (GBR) lead 29er Worlds,
After the second day of qualifying at the 29er Worlds in Melbourne, Britain's James Peters and Ed Fitzgerald lead by just one point. The British pair finished the day with two more wins to take a narrow lead over Steve Thomas and Jasper Warren (AUS), and Henrik Sigaard and Soren Kristensen (DEN) who are tied in second place... [more]

Morrison/Rhodes trail Aussies at 49er Worlds
Di Pearson/,
Britain's Steve Morrison and Ben Rhodes are in third place after the second day of qualifiers at the 49er World Championships. Australia’s Nathan Outteridge and Ben Austin lead at Sail Melbourne with the Hansen brothers from Denmark in second... [more]

Nuplex win 12 Foot Skiff Interdominions
Shaun Sheldrake,
Alex Vallings and Jeremy Smith (Nuplex - NZL) have wrapped up the 12 Foot Skiff Interdominions Silasec Trophy for individual honours with a day and two races to spare.... [more]

470 Internationale invests in athletes’ dreams
Int'l 470 Class Association media,
The support is defined in the Olympic Pathway Solidarity Grant (OPSG), launched by 470 Internationale in the end of 2006, aiming at the support of talented 470 sailors with sailing ambitions and abilities on Olympic levels who find financial or infrastructural obstacles on their way to Olympic Qualification.... [more]

Hugo Boss chipping away at Paprec-Virbac 2 lead
Barcelona World Race media,
Paprec-Virbac 2 had picked up a Southern Ocean low pressure system today, with winds of 30 to 35 knots and a lumpy sea state. But Hugo Boss is chipping away at their lead. Hugo Boss made more gains overnight, but today has been better for Paprec-Virbac 2, who have just about held their position over the past 24 hours, dropping just 10 miles.... [more]

Andraz Gulic SLO leads Laser 4.7 Worlds finals
Event media,
Racing got off on time this morning at the laser 4.7 Worlds with the gold fleet starting at 11am. Overall leaders after the days racing were - 1 Andraz Gulic SLO 41pts - 2 Boris Bignoli ITA 43pts - 3 Filip Matika CRO 62pts with one day to go... [more]

Australian Hayden Virtue takes lead at IC Worlds,
Hayden Virtue of Australia has taken the lead at the International Canoe World Championships being held at the McCrae Yacht Club, Australia. Following the abandoned second day of racing due to high winds, Virtue won two races and finished third in the final race of the day to move into the overall lead... [more]

Flying start for Brits on first day of 29er Worlds
Di Pearson /,
Britain's James Peters and Ed Fitzgerald won two of their opening races, and Bleddyn Mon and Tom Humpheries also had a great start - winning one and taking second in two others - on the first day of the 29er Worlds hosted by Sorrento Couta Sailing BC in Australia... [more]

Full on GBR start at 49er Worlds in Australia
Di Pearson/,
Danish brothers Peter and Soren Hansen took the early lead on Day 1 of the 49er World Championship at Sail Melbourne but British teams packed three boats into the first five positions. Britain's defending world champions Stevie Morrison and Ben Rhodes, currently third - John Pink and Simon Wheeler are fourth and Paul Campbell-James and Mark Asquith fifth... [more]

Bronze for Thompson at Australian Laser Champs
Di Pearson/,
Britain's Nick Thompson was able to raise his game to overatake Dutchman Rutger Van Schaardenburg and grab the bronze at the Australian Laser Championships. World champion Tom Slingsby of Australia recovered to take the title after the leading four had all dropped deep into double figures in the final series of races... [more]

Clipper fleet heads to the Tropics
Clipper event media,
With the top three boats split by just eleven miles in terms of distance to finish, the fight for those all-important podium positions is really heating up. Overnight the leading three - Hull & Humber, New York and Liverpool - have opened a ten mile gap on the next group, led by Nova Scotia and Glasgow... [more]

Images from Worser Bay: Send it! 12ft skiff style
Garrick Cameron,
More images by the superb Garrick Cameron, from the 12ft Skiff Interdominion at Worser Bay, Wellington, New Zealand... [more]

Early World Championships for Olympic classes
Sailing Scuttlebutt,
With the 2008 Olympic sailing events scheduled for this August, participating one design classes have needed to rearrange their typical summer world championship calendar, and all eleven events will crown a new king or queen within the next few months. Here is the 2008 Worlds schedule and websites:... [more]

Joyon slows - still 3360 miles ahead of MacArthur,
Francis Joyon's trimaran IDEC is this morning sailing off Uruguay. Yesterday the Frenchman sailed for much of the day in very light winds of less than 10 knots but last night his speed picked up again.... [more]

Decisions ahead for Paprec-Virbac 2
Event media,
Damian Foxall, the co-skipper on Paprec-Virbac 2, tells us of the decisions ahead that he and Jean-Pierre Dick have to confront - Mutua Madrileña are intent on leaving Wellington in exactly 48 hours - Good news from Wellington from Temenos II... [more]

Grafham GP images from Nick Champion
Nick Champion,
Grafham GP images from Nick Champion - Thirty-three boats took part in the fast handicap event at the Grafham Grand Prix this year - sailed in a format of two races, length 50 - 60 minutes for each with times based on average laps to obtain the result... [more]

Thompson (GBR) into third in Aussie Laser,
Nick Thompson of Britain continued his impressive performance in the Australian Laser Championships in Melbourne. After two races were completed in the final four race Gold series of the Aussie Nationals, Thompson is third... [more]

49er and 29er Worlds start Friday in Melbourne
Di Pearson,
The first of five Sail Melbourne world titles get underway tomorrow when the Olympic class 49er and Youth 29er World Championships start off the host venue Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club shortly after 10.00am... [more]

Entry open for Round the Island Race
Flavia Bateson,
Entries are now open for the next JPMorgan Asset Management Round the Island Race, which starts from Cowes, Isle of Wight, on Saturday 28 June 2008. The Round the Island Race is the largest yacht race of its kind in the world... [more]

G.C Marine Late Autumn Series ends on a high note
Jim Connolly,
The first winter series organised jointly by Liverpool Yacht and Pwllheli Sailing Clubs was completed on Sunday 30 December in fine racing conditions with eight boats on the water... [more]

Aussie I14 Nationals report and images
Kate Cooper/I14 website,
The Australian 2007-2008 I14 National Championships are being held at the Sydney Flying Squadron in Kirribilli, on Sydney Harbour. Races 4 and 5 were contested Wednesday. The wing mark for both races was set quite shy which proved to be difficult for some, particularly when negotiating their way through the Sabots. It was very interesting viewing!... [more]

Day 2 of International Canoe Worlds abandoned
Christian Knott,
Day two of the International Canoe Worlds being held at the McCrae Yacht Club, was abandoned due to winds of 30 plus knots ripping through the water off McCrae. Further to the earlier race report posted, Christian Knott has posted the following update with more detail of the day one racing... [more]

Leigh (CAN) retains lead in Aussie Laser Champs,
Mike Leigh of Canada leads Tom Slingsby of Australia for the Australian Laser Title. Second place in the final race of the qualifiers, with Slingsby in third, was sufficient for Leigh to lead into the final stages. Nick Thompson (GBR) won the final race and goes into the final stages in fourth place... [more]

A window closes up again for Groupama 3,
After a false alert at Christmas, a new 'weather window' has closed up again at the start of this year, preventing Groupama 3 from setting out on its circumnavigation. 'Code red... the window on 3rd January has closed up again. The centre of the depression remains in the West, off Ushant, and is expanding over the entire Bay of Biscay. This would mean an upwind start... not favourable... [more]

NZ continue to dominate in 12 Foot Skiff Interdoms
Shaun Sheldrake,
Wellington lived up to its windy reputation today. Everyone pulled out their little 4th or 5th rigs and some spectacular sailing was had by all. As expected the conditions have put the pressure on boat handling and the experienced combinations have moved into the leading bunch in races 5 & 6.... [more]

Images from IC Worlds
Alan Powell,
Images from IC Worlds by Alan Powell. The International Canoe Worlds are taking place at the McCrea YC, Australia... [more]

British 49er and 29er teams ready for Worlds
49er and 29er World Championships ready for the off Down Under -Reigning World Champions Stevie Morrison and Ben Rhodes will be looking to get their Olympic year off to a flying start by retaining their crown when racing at the 2008 49er World Championships gets underway in Melbourne this Friday (4 January)... [more]

Clipper fleet settle back into racing mode
Event media,
Hull & Humber, Durban 2010 and Beyond, Glasgow: Scotland with style Clipper and Nova Scotia are in the leading group as the Clipper fleet settle back into racing after leaving Fremantle. Jamaica lost several miles during the 12 hours to 06:00 GMT as they battled with a massive spinnaker wrap that occurred overnight... [more]

Paprec-Virbac at speed in Ice Field open lead
Event media,
Paprec-Virbac 2 continue their perilous path down in the furious fifties amongst the ice; a pretty hairy start to the year with icebergs and growlers dotting the horizon - A course that has paid as the 06:00 GMT position report sowed they had gained 120 miles on Hugo Boss... [more]

Bill Beaver (USA) leads IC Worlds after day 1,
Bill Beaver of the USA leads the International Canoe Worlds after day 1. Beaver had a first and second to lead by one point from Hayden Virtue of Australia, who scored a third and first. Chris Maas of the USA won both of the Development Canoe races... [more]

Andraz Gulic (SLO) retains lead at Laser 4.7 World
Event media,
Only one race was possible on day 4 of the Laser 4.7 World Championship in Hermanus, South Africa for the 115 entries. With the competitors bringing in the New Year with an exuberant party complete with fireworks and a full dinner for some four hundred guests and competitors the racing start was delayed till 14:00... [more]

Wrong track for Dragons
Peter Campbell,
The crews of two of the three International Dragon class yachts from Western Australia are making last minute repairs to their boats following damage while being transported to Perth for the Prince Philip Cup. Instead of being shipped to Hobart, as the owners expected, the containers in which they were being transported came across the Nullabor by freight train.... [more]

Favourable weather - Sodeb'O sails towards forties
Sodeb'O website media,
Thomas Coville: 'Sailing single-handed on this 32 metre trimaran is a real joy. Today my only frustration is performance, even though I am reasoning on the attempt as a whole and not on the present moment. In order to extract ourselves from Saint Helena, we opted for the least bad of all the solutions.'... [more]

Clipper race 5 starts from Fremantle to Singapore
Event media,
The start of Race 5 from Fremantle, Western Australia to Singapore took place at 1400 local time (0500 GMT) on New Year’s Day, with Durban 2010 and Beyond, Glasgow: Scotland with style Clipper and Uniquely Singapore the first three boats to cross the line as the cannon fired... [more]

Hugo Boss switch tactics
Event media,
In the chase to catch the Barcelona World Race leader, Paprec-Virbac 2, Alex Thomson and Andrew Cape on Hugo Boss have opted for different tactics in the north. Alex Thomson explained this morning the reasons for their alternative route further north... [more]

Grafham Grand Prix - Fast Race report
Mark Barnes,
Thirty-three boats took part in the fast handicap event at the Grafham Grand Prix this year - sailed in a format of two races, length 50 - 60 minutes for each with times based on average laps to obtain the result. Victory went to Howard Steavenson and Adam Ovington in an International 14 who just saved their time on Mark Barnes and Peter Nicholson leading the B14s... [more]

Tragic photo as crew watch their sailboat sink
Mitra Malek, Palm Beach Post,
The sailing boat Scarf had crossed the Atlantic, stopped in Venezuela and Tobago and endured two years of Quebec's arctic cold. Engineless for two years in the Caribbean, its captain had always kept it on course. But strong winds at the Lake Worth Inlet in Palm Beach Florida Sunday morning caused the demise of the 1968 Armagnac... [more]

Robot Boats to Hunt High-Tech Pirates
Eric Sofge,,
The U.S. Navy and Coast Guard have expressed interest in the 30-ft.-long Protector, a robot boat which comes mounted with a machine gun and could be retrofitted for commercial use.... [more]

Andraz Gulic leads Laser 4.7 Worlds after day 3
Event media,
Challenging conditions provide good racing for the Laser 4.7 fleet on the third day of the World Championships in Hermanus, South Africa for the 115 entries. After six races Andraz Gulic (SLO) has a comfortable lead of ten points over Alex Zimmermann (PER)... [more]

Paprec-Virbac 2 has gone south
Event media,
Paprec-Virbac 2 has gone south and is now in the mine field - ice! As you can see in the photographs the franco-irish crew do not have much wind down at 54° 32 South, and the iceberg in the picture is actually different to that spotted by Francis Joyon... [more]

Brown wins 31st Invitational IC Event,
Colin Brown (GBR) won the 31st Invitational International 10m² Canoe event at the Worlds being held at the McCrae Yacht Club, Australia as part of the Sail Melbourne International Regatta. This is the first time since 1996 that this event has been conducted in the Southern Hemisphere... [more]

Steve Clark (USA) wins IC Pre Worlds,
Steve Clark of the USA was the winner of the International Canoe Pre Worlds event in his Development Canoe, with junior Australian Alex Kalin the first IC home.... [more]

Mike Leigh (CAN) leads Aussie Laser Nationals,
Mike Leigh of Canada has a one point lead over Tom Slingsby (AUS) after seven of the eight scheduled races were completed in the Australian Laser Nationals. Rutgar van Schaardenburg (NED) is in third place, tied with Britain's Nick Thompson... [more]

Victory for Singaporean pair at Aussie 29er Champs,
Justin Liu and Sherman Cheng from Singapore won the 29er Australian Nationals held at Mordialloc Sailing Club, Australia. Byron White and William Ryan (AUS) were second and Alexandra Maloney and Blair Tuke (NZL) third... [more]

British teams top entries at 2008 Tornado Worlds
Richard Gladwell,
After the first round of entries for the 2008 Tornado World Championship closed, there were five British entries in a total of 32 competitors from 15 countries. Additional entries will be taken but will be subject to a late entry fee. Three crews have entered from New Zealand with a further five expected... [more]

Images New Zealand 12 Foot Skiff Champships
Shaun Sheldrake,
Lots of images from the 12 Foot Skiff Interdominions in New Zealand - It was a fantastic Wellington day - conditions were sunny, strong and testing for the 27 skiffs taking part in the contest. Nuplex - NZL (Alex Vallings and Jeremy Smith) created a 10 point buffer on the rest of the fleet with wins in both races... [more]

27th Grafham Grand Prix 2007 - Results,
Over 150 dinghies took part in the 27th Grafham Grand Prix held over the last weekend at Grafham Water SC, split into four handicap catagories.... [more]

Divisional winners announced dockside Rolex Hobart
Rolex Sydney Hobart Media Centre,
Divisional winners gathered dockside this morning in Hobart for the presentation of winner’s battle flags and the announcement of the overall winner to the public for the 2007 Rolex Sydney to Hobart.more]

Hobart pain is brief for those with no cigars
Crosbie Lorimer,
Most of those who participated in this years’s Rolex Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race would agree that this year’s race was one of the quitetest for a while. But quiet does not mean easy. The faces of many of the skippers and crew who arrived in Hobart on Friday and Saturday looked every bit as exhausted as they have in previous heavy weather years. The concentration and energy required to avo... [more]

Product of the Week: Raymarine's Life Tag
SAil-World Cruising,
Raymarine LifeTag is your personal wireless man overboard system. Utilizing the very latest in radio frequency broadcast technology, LifeTag monitors up to 16 tagged crew members ensuring they are safe and sound onboard. Each LifeTag pendant broadcasts a unique identification code back to the LifeTag base station, telling it that its wearer is 'safe.'... [more]

Nick Thompson tops Aussie Laser Champs,
Britain's Nick Thompson tops the Australina Laser Championships after five races. He leads by one point from Mike Leigh of Canada. Ashley Brunning is the top placed Australian entry at seventh overall. In the Radial class, Veronika Fencova of Czechoslovakia leads... [more]

Superyacht Stuck Two Years, Struggles to Freedom
Capt. Tom Serio, The Triton/Sail-World Cruising,
Last July, Sail-World Cruising published an bizarre story about the megayacht Legacy, marooned four miles off Florida's Key West since she was deposited there by Hurricane Wilma in October 2005. Owner Peter Halmos and the crew were onboard during the hurricane, and Halmos and his Captain have, incredibly, stayed on board or close in a houseboat ever since, trying to free the $30million yacht... [more]

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