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What next? - Australia Newsletter


What next?

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Zhik 2020 AnneMarieRindom LEADERBOARD

A late April morning at Hurst Castle, looking towards the Solent - photo © Mark Jardine

Dear Recipient Name

The pandemic news has flowed in waves around the world. Talk of first infection rates, then lockdowns, strategies, vaccines and very sadly the deaths. This seems to be the week of 'What next?'.

In the UK we are speculating as to what might happen, but Australians are welcoming moves by Queensland and Western Australia to loosen the restrictions on recreational boating following encouraging signs of containment.

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As Darren Vaux, Boating Industry Association President, said: "Recreational boating out in the fresh air and sunshine is good for mental and physical health and is a low-risk activity that a family can easily do whilst adhering to social distancing and hygiene rules.

"Governments recognise that getting out on the water is a way of life for many Australians and it is estimated more than 20 per cent of all Australians engage in some form of boating activity annually.

"It was good to see Queensland enable households to travel 50km from home for recreational boating, especially as 85 per cent of the population live within 50km of the coast. This adds to the existing permitted uses of fishing, paddle and sail craft in that State for exercise.

"In WA, the State Government has also said, based on health advice, they can cautiously relax the number for indoor and outdoor gatherings to a maximum of 10 people, while practising social distancing.

"Reactivating a low-risk activity like boating will start to repair the boating industry which is closely aligned to tourism and is hurting with staff layoffs and business closures as a result of COVID-19."

2019 Sail Port Stephens final day - photo © Nic Douglass /
2019 Sail Port Stephens final day - photo © Nic Douglass /

There is no doubt that the world is watching strategies taken by other countries and hopefully learning from what works and doesn't work.

I had a good chat with Andy Rice on Monday, which will be available to view on and on Tuesday or Wednesday depending on your time zone, where we discussed how sailing might be possible in the age of social distancing. While recognising that very few situations are 100% safe, sailing would seem to be a pastime which can adapt. Dinghies for example are most often sailed by one or two people, reducing risk, and perhaps upper wind-limits could be introduced to reduce the need for rescue boat cover. Rescue boats could be crewed as much as possible by members of the same family. These are just ideas, but our national governing bodies are actively discussing how to move forwards.

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The Lockdown Cup Round 2 - photo © Mark Jardine
The Lockdown Cup Round 2 - photo © Mark Jardine

In the meantime, eSailing has taken off in a big way. Our livestream coverage of The Lockdown Cup proved immensely popular, pitting the top British Sailing Team and UK amateur champions against competition winners. We're of course not stopping here, with more events on the horizon, including The Lockdown Ashes. The best that Australia has to offer, including the likes of Tom Slingsby and Tom Burton, against British sailors such as Lockdown Cup champion Luke Patience and fellow Olympian Ben Saxton. While this is intended to be 'just a bit of friendly racing', the competition is bound to be fierce!

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Australian 18ft skiffs grow ever faster - Chesty Bond's crew flying high on the wings - The Ocean Challenge - photo © Frank Quealey
Australian 18ft skiffs grow ever faster - Chesty Bond's crew flying high on the wings - The Ocean Challenge - photo © Frank Quealey

Lockdown has provided us with a moment's pause from many things in our day-to-day lives, and David Henshall's latest article 'The Greed for Speed' has given us many things to think about. The readership on this article has been exceptional, being accessed four times every second since it was put live.

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Ian Walker's Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing win the Volvo Ocean Race - photo © Matt Knighton / Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing / Volvo Ocean Race
Ian Walker's Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing win the Volvo Ocean Race - photo © Matt Knighton / Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing / Volvo Ocean Race

One of the most exciting initiatives we've launched in April is 'Happy Hour with Stretch and Stirfry'. This light-hearted podcast is giving us a real insight into the lives and thoughts of some of the top personalities in the world of sailing. I highly recommend a listen to our first two episodes with Ian Walker and Luke Patience.

Like so many parts of our lives, we don't know exactly what's coming next, but our aim is to keep sailing at the forefront. Thank you for your visits to and, your interaction, your contribution and your support - it means so much to our team and is what drives us to do more.

Take care & stay safe.

Mark Jardine & Managing Editor

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Sharing your capsize photos - part 2
This was the Wilson Trophy 2013, on the Saturday, before everyone changed down to smaller sails. I captured several images of this manoeuvre, but the best one shows the wonderfully horizontal and straight body position of the helmsman!

America's Cup: Luna Rossa swap crew for electric engines to test sail in Sardinia
Leading Italian website FareVela says Luna Rossa skipper Max Sirena revealed during an interview that the Italian America's Cup Challenger had fitted electric motors, replacing six crew, and were able to sail from the teams base in Cagliari

A look back at the 2001 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship
John Harris, Craig Ferris and Chris Cleary sailing Rag and Famish Hotel won the 2001 JJ Giltinan Trophy. Rob Greenhalgh, Dan Johnson & Jonny Meers sailing RMW Marine could not continue their form throughout the regatta and finished 5th overall.

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Digging in deep for our customers
Having respect for COVID-19 is of course of paramount importance and staying at home, protecting the health services and saving lives is what we should all work hard at doing.

Maxi Class: What does the future hold for professional sailing circuits?
Andrew McIrvine, medical man, and the driving force behind the International Maxi Assoc in recent years, shares his views on the immediate future of the marque regatta circuits and the impacts for owners, event organisers and professional sailors .

1984 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship video
Twenty-nine skiffs from Australia, Great Britain, Canada, New Zealand and the United States took part in the 1984 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship on Sydney Harbour.

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Earth Day 2020: A spotlight on sustainable practices of Clipper Race Partners
In celebration of Earth Day 2020, we are shining a spotlight on Clipper Race Partners who remain committed to implementing sustainable practices throughout their businesses.

America's Cup: American Magic prepares for move to New Zealand
Prestigious US sailing magazine Sailing World reports that the New York Yacht Club's America's Cup challenger is marking time at their winter training base in Pensacola, Florida, waiting for a travel window to New Zealand.

Sail Port Stephens special with the Sailor Girl
Adventures Weekly with a focus on Sail Port Stephens thanks to Pantaenius Yacht Insurance, where we would all rather be right now!

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The Whitbread Round the World Race 1993-94 Official Film
By the 1993-94 edition, the Whitbread Round the World Race had already transformed from an adventure imbued with Corinthian spirit to a professional sport where food, bedding and clothing were being optimised for performance not comfort.

RORC Time Over Distance - Skip Novak: Whitbread racer and Antarctic explorer
Born in Chicago in 1952, Skip Novak is best known for his participation in four Whitbread Round the World Yacht Races, including three as skipper with Alaska Eagle, Drum and Fazisi.

America's Cup: J class to merge as part of AC36 events program reshuffle
The J-class regattas will be merged with the superyacht events in the 36th America's Cup. Increased interest in other events will see some re-jigging of the ancillary 2020-21 racing program. A new inbound vessels policy has been agreed post-COVID19

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Bow down and send it!
Ian Dobson is the current World and National Champion in the Fireball Class. In the following article, originally published in edition 8 of the Fireball E-News, he explains the mystical 'fast mode'.

The Greed for Speed
With dinghy racing being a competitive sport, there has always been a demand for more power and speed as getting to the finish line faster than the rest is what it is all about, so that in some ways, the 'Greed for Speed' is nothing new.

Emirates Team New Zealand use separation technology for work return
An enforced national lockdown in the fight against COVID-19 has sparked an impromptu technical innovation between Emirates Team New Zealand and Igtimi, to create personal separation and contact tracing tags so the team can safely return to work next week.

Henri-Lloyd 2020 MPU   RS Sailing 2019 - MPU
A look back at the 1999 JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship
A look back on the 1999 JJ Giltinan Championship on Sydney Harbour. A huge year with the trophy going to the Northern Hemisphere for the first time in its history.

ZHIK's Latest Powerpads® 3 will keep you hiking harder, for longer
For everyone who's practicing in the garden on their home made hiking benches or in dinghies in their jacuzzi, Zhik's Powerpads® 3 are the latest piece of fitness equipment to keep you hiking harder for longer!

Mozzy Sails talks us through making your own masthead camera mount
The parts for this DIY masthead action camera mount are fairly ubiquitous and it's a little project that can be done from home during lockdown.

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Sharing your capsize photos - part 1
In a new series celebrating the smiles that capsizes can bring (only after the event!) we start off with a lovely black and white shot from a prestigious team racing event in the UK.

Kieler Woche 2020: Back to its roots
With the postponement of Kieler Woche from the end of June to September, the organizers of the state capital Kiel and the Kieler Yacht-Club sent a signal in mid-March.

America's Cup: Ben Ainslie updates after returning from Cagliari
'Less than two months ago we had just returned to our winter training camp in Cagliari from Sydney. We were celebrating our team win in the first SailGP event of the season where we had some fantastic racing in Sydney Harbour'

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Happy Hour with Stretch & Stirfry - Luke Patience
This week, Stretch and Stirfry chat to Luke Patience, British Olympic Sailor and Whisky connoisseur.

Everything you need to know about sailing a 5O5
With the time we have available before we can get back to sail boat racing, sailors have the perfect opportunity to make sure our boats are configured correctly and we have learnt what we can about setting them up and tuning for the conditions.

America's Cup: Teams continue preparations despite time-outs
In a parallel world, all of the teams would be assembled in Cagliari now, poised to lock horns with their respective AC75's on the azure Mediterranean waters on Day 1 of a four-day regatta. Instead they are at home reshaping their campaigns.

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Go below the ocean's surface on Earth Day 2020 with Chasing Coral
Happy Earth Day from 11th Hour Racing Team! Did you know this year is the 50th Anniversary of this special day celebrating our incredible planet by showing our support for environmental protection?

IMOCA Class skippers show their support for UNESCO scientists
Two hundred days before the 2020 Vendée Globe is due to start, and on this 50th Earth Day, the skippers of the IMOCA Class underline their support for the scientists of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO.

The Lockdown Cup Round 2 - Sailors or Space Invaders?
The sun is shining, the wind is up, and the temperatures are nudging the 20s in the UK. Without doubt time to lock yourself in a dark room, avoid all distractions and play computer games!

Gul 2020 Tri-Laminate Spraytop MPU 250 - 2014
What was your most spectacular capsize?
Capsize, wipe out, broach, pitchpole, going down the mine... call it what you will, these moments of unexpected wetness can usually make us smile afterwards. It would be great to share any of these unintended antics which were caught on camera.

World Sailing launch youth sustainability education materials for sailing clubs
World Sailing, in partnership with the World Sailing Trust and 11th Hour Racing, have released a Sustainability Education Programme, developed with The Ocean Race, for sailing clubs and parents as part of its Agenda 2030.

Reflections on a life afloat: Piling on the downwind canvas
One of my favorite non-racing memories stems from a brooding day in July, 2008 when my good friend Peter, our mutual good friend Scott, and the late and very nice Jerry Twomey loaded a Parasailor spinnaker aboard Peter's old Norlin 34.

C-Tech 250   Hyde Sails 2017 March 300x250
Building beasts: Jason Carrington on AC75s and IMOCA 60s
French website and sailing newsletter Tip & Shaft talks with boat builder Jason Carrington about his projects including INEOS Team UK's second AC75, an IMOCA60, and with the repairs to the IMOCA60 Hugo Boss just completed

America's Cup: Emirates Team NZ hit hard by five weeks of COVID-19 lockdowns
Auckland can expect to see the first America's Cup Challenger sailing on the Waitemata Harbour in four months. But of the four teams that have launched AC75's, Emirates Team New Zealand has been hit the hardest by the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Stay at home Finn reading
Even though most Finn sailors cannot go Finn sailing at the moment and are being encouraged to stay at home, there are a lot of Finn books and magazines that can entertain you while we are all waiting for racing to restart.

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J-Bird III Restoration Series: Part 2 - Preparation for getting her home
As featured in Part 1 of this blog series, we have purchased the World's First TP52 originally known as J-Bird III. Due to the state of the boat, it is going through a full restoration and conversion to zero emissions.

18 footer archives: Sydney skiff sailing in 1967
The 18 foot skiffs have had many forms over the last 130 years, but their hallmarks of big sails, big spills and plenty of shouting have remained the same.

2020 J/24 World Championship postponed to September 2021
The International J/24 Class Association (IJCA) and the Parkstone Yacht Club in Poole United Kingdom today announced that the 2020 J/24 World Championship scheduled for September 12-18, 2020 will be postponed until September 24-October 2, 2021.

2020 Flying Fifteen Europeans cancelled
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Cabin fever therapy: Nick Moloney's Vendee Globe
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