Cupdate, VO65s, and GP monohulls—Sailing news from the U.S. and beyond

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08 Mar 2014

Cupdate, VO65s, and GP monohulls—Sailing news from the U.S. and beyond

Team Australia Sydney Harbour - Andrea Francolini - 35th America's Cup 2017  Andrea Francolini
While the 35th America's Cup is still a long ways out on the horizon, much behind-the-scenes maneuvering and planning is currently happening in this world, especially on the antipodean side of things. Team Australia, the Challenger of Record for AC35, announced yesterday at their christening ceremony for their first AC45-class catamaran that Matthew Belcher, 2013 Rolex ISAF World Sailor of Year and an Olympic champion, will serve as the team's skipper, ending months of speculation.

'I'm humbled and excited by this honor,' said Belcher. 'It's an incredible opportunity and I'm looking forward to the journey, coming aboard and working together with the crew to bring the Cup back to Australia.'

1956935 1427432330832792 566106572 o - Team Australia launch - Sydney - Thursday, March 6, 2014  © Andrea Francolini Photography

Not surprisingly, the team's top brass is also thrilled with their new hire. ‘Indeed, as a country, we've proven we can produce some of the best sailors in the world, and now it's our turn to build an all-Aussie winning team skippered by one of the most awarded Australian sailors,' said Team Australia's CEO, Iain Murray. 'Mat is a remarkable example of an elite athlete and one of the most accomplished sailors that Australia has ever produced.'

Team Australia is reportedly spending the next several days training aboard their AC45 on Sydney Harbor, practice racing against Oracle Team USA, who is spending their late winter/spring training DownUnder. Get the full report from Team Australia, including the names of several additional crewmembers and more news from their AC45 launching ceremony, inside this issue.

C-Tech and 7 side by side down the first run - JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship 2014  Australian 18 Footers League ©

Speaking of Australia and high-performance sailing, the 2014 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship is currently taking place on Sydney Harbor. According to reports, inside, the 'Gotta Love it 7' team is looking strong. 'Gotta Love it 7', it will be remembered, is skippered by Seve Jarvin, and, if successful at this regatta, Jarvin's race record at the JJ Giltinan will match that of Iain Murray (Team Australia's CEO, who was a keen 18-footer sailor from 1977 to 1982). Inside, get the full report, as well as a great image gallery from this highly competitive regatta.

Meanwhile, in the world of offshore ocean racing, word is quickly reaching the street that the new Volvo Ocean 65s-while five feet shorter, LOA, than their predecessors-are plenty quick, especially when it comes to racking up daily mileage runs. According to reports, Team Brunel, skippered by Bouwe Bekking, recently managed to reel off 540 miles in a 24-hour period, which is just shy of the 24-hour monohull record (596.6), which was set by Ericsson 4 during the 2008/2009 Volvo Ocean Race.

Team Brunel training, 02-03-2014, Lanzarote, Spain  © Sander van der Borch / Team Brunel

While this new reference point was set during a training run between the UK and the Canary Islands, fans of the race can expect to see bigger daily runs once the teams get completely dialed on the new boats. Inside, check out the photo gallery of Team Brunel's training sessions, which they are running out of Lanzarote.

Closer to home, the 52 US Championships are currently taking place in Miami. While the airs were light during the regatta's first day, 'Quantum Racing' managed to make the most of the conditions to secure a thin early lead.

52 Super Series  Martinez Studio/52 Super Series

'Both races were good,' reported Terry Hutchinson, 'Quantum Racing's' skipper. 'First race we had a pretty good race going with 'Rán Racing'. We were able capitalize when they set a little too deep at the top mark first time and we rolled them.'

As for the day's second race, 'Quantum Racing' was also in top form. 'Second race we executed a good start and going out to the right side in a big left hand shift and both boats–us and 'Azzurra'–made nice gains on the group. It was then [all about] who beat who to the top mark... Big picture, though? A great day, hats off to our guys on board for managing their way through a difficult day.'

Get the full report from the 52 US Championships, inside this issue.

Race 9.1: Day 4 - Clipper Round The World Yacht Race 2013-14   Clipper 13-14 Round the World Yacht Race

Also inside, get up-to-date reports from the Clipper Round the World Race and the Bacardi Miami Sailing Week, and be sure to check out the latest news from the Coast Guard Foundation.

May the four winds blow you safely home,

David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor

Fast foils-a conversation with Paul Bieker, part two
David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor,
Paul Bieker is one of the core designers credited with 'super-charging' Oracle Team USA's 'USA 17' last September during the 34th America's Cup. I recently caught up with Bieker at a local Seattle pub for part two of this two-part interview to get his thoughts on how AC34 was won, his design role for AC35, as well as his thoughts on the future of America's Cup Racing.... [more]
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America's Cup: Team Australia gets back in the ring
Richard Gladwell,,
Video and images from the Team Australia launch of their AC45 launch and first sail in Sydney. On Thursday morning the Challenger of Record's AC45 was christened by Val Oatley, Bob Oatley's wife. Later that afternoon, she joined the America's Cup Defender, Oracle Team USA, for a work out on Sydney Harbour... [more]
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America's Cup: Australian Sailing Team pleased with Matt Belcher move
Cora Zillich,
At the Team Australia media launch Iain Murray, CEO Team Australia, said Hamilton Island Yacht Club was keen for the immense talents of Australia's sailors to be showcased. In the upcoming training session on Sydney Harbour Team Australia will use the opportunity this week to rotate a number of crew through the boat, introducing them to the AC45 catamaran, as they race against Oracle Team USA.... [more]
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Clipper Round the World Race - Fleet battle headwinds up to 60 knots
Clipper Ventures,
In the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, the crews are battling through headwinds of up to 60 knots with short, sharp waves, steep angles and cold conditions making for extremely demanding racing. Some teams have hoisted the Yankee 3, getting rid of the storm jib, but were forced to take it down again because the wind was too powerful.... [more]
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Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Ladies tackle Mother Nature
Marina Thomas,
Ahead of International Women's Day tomorrow, Mother Nature's toughest conditions are being taken on by nurses, marketing managers, housewives, PAs, engineers and lawyers from around the globe who are taking part in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.... [more]
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US 52 Super Series - Azzurra tops the leaderboard
52 Super Series,
At the US 52 Super Series in Miami, a second race win in succession, gained from the only race of the day, sees Azzurra top the leaderboard, now leading Quantum Racing on countback.... [more]
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International Optimist Regatta set for June 16-22, 2014
Carol Bareuther,
The 2014 International Optimist Regatta (IOR), Sea Star Clinic and Sea Star Team Race will take place June 16 to 22, 2014.... [more]
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Bacardi Cup 2014 - A hotbed of activity
Jan Harley,
At the fifth annual running of Bacardi Miami Sailing Week (BMSW), presented by EFG, the arrival of competitors racing in the Audi Melges 20, J/70, Melges 24, Viper 640 and VX One classes turned Biscayne Bay into a hotbed of activity today... [more]
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Gill Commodore's Cup - Action begins amid perfect conditions
St. Maarten Heineken Regatta,
Along the southern shore of St. Maarten, under beautiful blue skies and with an ideal 15-18 knot east-southeast breeze coursing across the waters, 50 spinnaker-division boats in five classes set sail today in the 2014 Gill Commodore's Cup.... [more]
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Bacardi Miami Sailing Week - Trio of races kick off the action
Joy Dunigan,
The opening day of racing at Bacardi Miami Sailing Week 2014 (BMSW) hosted by Coconut Grove Sailing Club and strongly supported by Melges USA, saw the completion of the first three races in an eight part series. John Kilroy on Samba Pa Ti faired best striking a 3-3-4 scoreline to take the overall lead.... [more]
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Techno 293 North Americans - Action closes in Cancun + Video
Patrik Pollak,
The Techno 293 North American Championships took place in Cancun, Mexico, serving as another qualification event for the 2014 Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing, China. Amid white sands and crystal clear water, three more nations qualified for the Youth Olympics.... [more]
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America's Cup – Meet the sailing crew for Oracle Team USA
Oracle Team USA,
Oracle Team USA skipper Jimmy Spithill and tactician/sailing team manager Tom Slingsby have introduced the crew who are participating in the team's first training camp of the new America's Cup cycle.... [more]
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Rio Paralympic Sailing Competition - Qualification System released
The Qualification System for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Sailing Competition has now been released. The first Qualification Regatta, the 2014 High Liner IFDS World Championships, takes place from 16-24 August 2014 at the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron, Halifax, Canada.... [more]
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BVI Spring Regatta - Join this amazing March event
Global Yacht Racing,
The BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival is an amazing event in March. It is no exaggeration to describe the Caribbean Islands that make up the BVIs as an idyllic paradise. With steady breeze, spectacular island scenery and warm water the annual regatta that calls the BVIs home is one of the best events for getting away from the hum drum.... [more]
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Sail America annual member meeting set for April 11
Sail America,
Sail America will be holding its annual member meeting on Friday, April 11, 2014, during Strictly Sail Pacific in Oakland, CA. The meeting will take place from 8:00 AM-9:30 AM at Scott's Restaurant and is open to Sail America members and all sailing industry professionals.... [more]
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Bacardi Miami Sailing Week – Six nations and a Wildman all set
International Audi Melges 20 Class Association,
The Int'l Audi Melges 20 Class Association is thrilled to welcome 41 world-class teams to Bacardi Miami Sailing Week celebrating the event as the second largest fleet in attendance. Representing six nations - Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Italy, Japan and the U.S., the fleet is fully loaded with the greatest amatuer drivers in the world and some of the brightest superstars in the sport of sailing.... [more]
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Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Fleet face tough conditions
Clipper Ventures,
In the Clipper Round The World Yacht Race, powerful headwinds, steep waves, an adverse current and busy shipping lanes are making conditions very unpleasant on the yachts as they beat towards Qingdao.... [more]
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J/24 Midwinters Championship - Winner decided
The 2014 J/24 Midwinters were highlighted by somewhat fabulous, near postcard-perfect sailing conditions and with some extraordinary entertainment both on and off the water. For one of the 'side-shows', there were hundreds of noisy offshore powerboats criss-crossing the course area with bikini-clad girls hanging out as they tried to score big in the Miami Boat Show 'Poker Run' down to Islamorada.... [more]
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Volvo Ocean Race: Team Brunel sailing and training in Lanzarote.
Sander van der Borsch,
Top international photographer Sander van der Borsch provided this gallery of images of Volvo Ocean Race entrant, Team Brunel sailing and training in Lanzarote. He reports that everything is going according to the planning and the team already has done some really nice sailing,... [more]
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52 Super Series US Championship opening day
52 Super Series,
After the opening day of the 52 US Championship, the second regatta of the 2014 US 52 Super Series, posting a race win and a third place from two light wind races off Miami's South Beach Quantum Racing earned themselves an overall lead of one single point.... [more]
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