Please select your home edition
C-Tech 2021 SnuffAir 728x90 TOP

Is there a need for speed? - Australia newsletter


Is there a need for speed?

Pantaenius 2022 - SAIL & POWER 1 LEADERBOARD AUS


Machined titanium and carbon T-Foil - photo © SailGP

Dear Recipient Name

It's that famous line by Pete "Maverick" Mitchell in Top Gun while walking towards his F-14 Tomcat with Goose, "I feel the need, the need for speed". Sailing seems to have been following the mantra, with the F50s of SailGP and the AC40 / AC75 combination of the America's Cup getting ever faster.

With stadium courses, and a schedule set by TV, SailGP is always looking for ways to increase the light wind performance of the catamarans. The circuit's aim is to get them sailing regardless of the wind strength, so that they're out racing when SailGP has its live slots on the television networks around the world.

Switzerland SailGP Team helmed by Sebastien Schneiter lead the SailGP Fleet on Race Day 1 of the ROCKWOOL Italy Sail Grand Prix in Taranto, Italy - photo © Ricardo Pinto for SailGP
Switzerland SailGP Team helmed by Sebastien Schneiter lead the SailGP Fleet on Race Day 1 of the ROCKWOOL Italy Sail Grand Prix in Taranto, Italy - photo © Ricardo Pinto for SailGP

Barz Optics 2023 SW 1   Boat Books Australia

Light winds are a problem. A lowriding F50 isn't a pretty sight, and trying to explain why one catamaran is going four times the speed of another to a non-sailing audience is tricky. For the light stuff the massive 29 metre wings were developed, but they've been out of action since the catastrophic failure of the New Zealand SailGP team's wing. The other measure taken is reducing crew numbers in light winds to keep the weight down, and hopefully induce foiling earlier.

In strong winds SailGP seems obsessed about the top speed numbers. The record at the time of writing is 99.94 km/h, set by the France SailGP Team in Saint Tropez back in September 2022, and the '100 km/h barrier' is the target they've been trying to break for over a year now.

To this end, SailGP is testing machined titanium and carbon T-Foils. These have thinner sections than the current L-Foils, which delay the onset of cavitation by around 11 km/h, which should allow the F50 catamarans to reach speeds of up to 110 km/h - that's 59 knots in units us sailors understand.

Machined titanium and carbon T-Foil testing - photo © SailGP
Machined titanium and carbon T-Foil testing - photo © SailGP

Race Yachts 2023 v4   Windcraft 2022 July - Dehler 46SQ - MPU

In the America's Cup the need for speed is obvious, as it's not a one-design contest. The Auld Mug is won by the team with the fastest yacht for any given design rule. Right now, it's the AC75, and the teams are spending immense amounts of time and money trying to develop the fastest yacht within the rule.

Many argue that the America's Cup was more exciting when sailed in 12 Metres, which aren't exactly quick by today's standards. Back then, alongside the keels hiding behind veils, much of the focus was on the sailors and their press conferences. The comments and rivalries made the headlines with Dennis Conner and John Bertrand's sparring being the stuff of legend.

Dennis Conner (left) and moderator Bill Ficker at a Media Conference after Race 1 of the 1983 America's Cup - photo © Paul Darling
Dennis Conner (left) and moderator Bill Ficker at a Media Conference after Race 1 of the 1983 America's Cup - photo © Paul Darling

Zhik 2023 Black Friday MPU   Pantaenius 2022 - SAIL MPU AUS

The question is: for Grand Prix sailboat racing, is there a need for more speed? Or do we actually just need more access to the personalities, and for more rivalries?

Making the comparison with Formula One motor racing, I had no idea what the highest speed of an F1 car was, so headed to Wikipedia to find out that Valtteri Bottos set a top race speed of 372.499 km/h or 231.46 mph during the 2016 Mexican Grand Prix. I'm sure there are some petrolheads out there who knew this stat, but it was interesting that it was a quite a while ago, and I doubt many F1 fans are obsessed with it.

The times Formula One works is when there are great rivalries - think of Prost and Senna, Hill and Schumacher, Alonso and Hamilton - and that's when fans picked one or the other and supported them. No-one wanted to know what speed they were going, they wanted to see them wheel-to-wheel on the racetrack, and verbally sparring in the pre- and post-race press conferences.

3. NZSailGP is just short of the start line at start-time, sailing fast, and with their apparent wind peaking. and clear air - SailGP Copenhagen - August - photo © SailGP Media
3. NZSailGP is just short of the start line at start-time, sailing fast, and with their apparent wind peaking. and clear air - SailGP Copenhagen - August - photo © SailGP Media

ALT Composities 2020 West System 2 - 300x250   Navico AUS Zeus3S MPU

Do increased speeds in the F50 make for a better spectator sport? As I continue to be enthralled by the SSL Gold Cup, I haven't seen yacht speeds mentioned anywhere, and I'm pretty sure the SSL 47 yachts have only occasionally reached double figures in knots, but the racing has been spectacular.

The final day of the 1/8 Finals on Friday produced some of the most exciting sailboat racing I've ever seen, with plenty of place-changing right up to the finish line. As I mentioned a fortnight ago, the on-board cameras are providing an incredible insight as to what the crew are going through, and helping us understand the highs of winning, and the lows of losing.

Onboard with SSL Team Australia - photo © Martina Orsini / SSL Gold Cup
Onboard with SSL Team Australia - photo © Martina Orsini / SSL Gold Cup

XBrand 2023 MPU   Ensign 2023 November C46 MPU

The SSL Gold Cup continues to gather interest in some of the smaller sailing nations, with Portugal, Chile, Malaysia and Lithuania the four teams who started their racing back on the 10th November, avoiding elimination and reaching the 1/4 Finals. The audience in Lithuania and Malaysia for the event is massive, with national television and other media showing the racing live, running all the news and the sailors becoming household names. This event is accessing fans which sailing simply hadn't reached before.

National teams, who otherwise wouldn't have the finance to compete, are at the SSL Gold Cup. The provided one-design SSL47 yachts are the level playing field for the likes of Tahiti to go toe-to-toe with the all-star Brazil team - that's a nation with a population of 190,000 taking on one with 214 million...

SSL Gold Cup 1/8 Finals Fleet 2, Race 4 - SSL Team Brazil and SSL Team Tahiti tacking duel - photo © Gilles Morelle / SSL Gold Cup
SSL Gold Cup 1/8 Finals Fleet 2, Race 4 - SSL Team Brazil and SSL Team Tahiti tacking duel - photo © Gilles Morelle / SSL Gold Cup

Being the first edition, the rivalries are yet to emerge at the SSL Gold Cup. Everyone is just happy to be here in Gran Canaria and taking part, but over time as the concept grows and is refined, these rivalries will build. They may well emerge as we get closer to the Final on 3rd December.

It's easy for you to keep track of what's happening in the event as we're embedding the live footage on and each day, as well as giving you comprehensive reports, glorious photos and highlight videos. There's no need for speed, just great racing.

Mark Jardine and

Colligo Marine 2023 600x500 MPU   Festival of Sails 2024 MPU

Tense & Tactical Opener to the SSL Gold Cup 1/4 Finals
After the breathless and heart-stopping moments we saw on Fantastic Friday, the start of the SSL Gold Cup 1/4 Finals in Gran Canaria was a far less frenetic light wind affair.

Getting Better for Jeddah: How America's Cup Teams Use Wireless Load Sensing To Be At Their Best
Some innovations appear for one AC campaign, and are gone the next. Others develop and spread through the teams. The latter is true of Cyclops wireless load sensors. They are now being used by the majority of teams.

Global Solo Challenge: The unforgiving waters of the southern oceans
The latest week in the Global Solo Challenge has seen the majority of the skippers at sea confront, some for the first time, the relentless and dynamic Southern Ocean.

J Composites 2022 - J99 MPU   MIA 2021 DEC MPU
Sails up: Phuket welcomes world sailors for the Phuket King's Cup Regatta 2023
A testament to the competitive spirit of sailing and a significant booster for Thailand's sport tourism, the event, taking place at Beyond Kata.

PlanetSail - How is this British America's Cup challenge different?
INEOS Britannia skipper Sir Ben Ainslie and Operations Director Dave Endean talk candidly and exclusively to Matt Sheahan about how this challenge differs from the last Cup attempt down in Auckland.

ORCV Bass Strait Sprint sees GINAN sail to victory
The second West Offshore Products Coastal Sprint race sailed in light, and tricky conditions in Bass Strait saw Nigel Jones GINAN lead the way and come away the victor.

Marine Auctions 2019 600x500   38 South / Jeanneau AUS SF30 OD - MPU
2023 44Cup Calero Marinas - Overall
Dutchman Nico Poons was unable to stay dry once ashore from the final day of racing at the 44Cup Calero Marinas.

SSL Gold Cup 1/4 Finals Officially Opened
The world's most elite sailing teams have landed in sunny Gran Canaria for the 1/4 Finals of the SSL Gold Cup, and the level of competition is only ramping up.

Zhik Junior Gear On Sale | Black Friday Up to 40% Off
Zhik makes some of the world's best water sports gear for juniors, kids and children on the market. Zhik gear is performance-driven, high-quality and offers the latest in technological innovation on the market.

Vaikobi 2023 Gloves - MPU   Vetus-Maxwell 2020
18ft Skiff NSW Championship on Sydney Harbour - Races 1 & 2
The defending champion Andoo team of John Winning Jr, Seve Jarvin and Sam Newton hold a narrow lead after the first two races sailed on the opening day of the 2023-24 NSW 18ft Skiff Championship.

Professional Plumbing Two Capes Race at Derwent Sailing Squadron
Bakewell White Fork in the Road took Line Honours in the Professional Plumbing Two Capes Race hosted by the Derwent Sailing Squadron, and with it a new race record of 19:29:39, shaving a full 30 minutes off 2022's record set by Inglis 47 Advantedge.

2023 Nautilus Marine Insurance Sydney Short Ocean Racing Championship - Overall
The 2023 Nautilus Marine Insurance Sydney Short Ocean Racing Championship (SSORC) was decided over two offshore windward/leeward courses today and Bob Cox's Nine Dragons along with Jack Stening and Colin Gunn's Stormaway.

Flagstaff 2021AUG - Oceanis 40.1 - MPU   Webasto AUS 2020 MPU 5
America's Cup: Emirates Youth Team hopefuls spend a week on trial for AC37 Youth team
The next generation of potential Emirates Team New Zealand sailors, have spent a week under the spotlight at the team base in Auckland, as part of the selection process for the 2024 Youth America's Cup team.

Cup Spy Nov 24: Design co-ordinator says Luna Rossa on the cusp of making key design decisions
Alinghi Red Bull Racing sailed in light winds of up to 9kts at Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and tested using two boats in development mode. Two other teams INEOS Britannia and Orient Express Racing Team also sailed in their One-Design configurations.

Volvo Ocean Race 2005-06 Official Film
In 2005-06, the Volvo Ocean Race broke with tradition by starting outside the UK, from Vigo, Spain, to Cape Town, South Africa. Introducing the Volvo Open 70 boat class added excitement but posed challenges on the 31,000 nautical mile global route.

Rolly Tasker Sails 2023 MPU   RS Sailing 2021 - MPU
Recap from the SSL Gold Cup 1/8 Finals in Gran Canaria
The SSL Gold Cup kicked off to an excellent start in the 1/32 Finals, a superb standard of racing that only increased in the 1/16 Finals, but the extraordinary 1/8 Finals topped them both.

Azzurro Sydney Hobart Yacht Race crew sets sail to raise awareness for Stroke Foundation
The crew of the Azzurro yacht is embarking on a journey beyond the open seas as they set sail in the prestigious Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

Perfection & Pain in Phénoménale SSL Gold Cup 1/8 Finals
Just when we thought we'd seen it all in Gran Canaria, the SSL Gold Cup took it to a whole new level on the Golden Day of the 1/8 Finals. Double points meant it all came down to today's performance on the water.

Selden 2023 CXe   North Sails Performance 2023 - MPU
Transat Jacques Vabre - great racing and great solidarity in a record-breaking IMOCA fleet
The 2023 Transat Jacques Vabre-Normandie Le Havre featured a delayed start because of extreme weather and then a shortened course, but it still delivered a classic contest for the record-entry 40 IMOCA teams that took the start.

4 Days Up To 40% Off with Zhik this Black Friday
Make the most of our biggest sale of the year with saving across the range of high-quality wetsuits, waterproof jackets, footwear, PFDs, sailing equipment and more. Login or create an account at to get a bonus discount!

World's top match racers head to Shenzhen for World Match Racing Tour Final
Twelve of the world's best match racing skippers from nine countries head to the City of Shenzhen, China next month for the final event of the 2023 World Match Racing Tour.

Henri-Lloyd 2023 Freo Jacket - SW MPU   Allen 2022 - PSH Cam Cleat MPU
Italian boats dominate Transat Jacques Vabre Class40 podium with first and third
With Alberto Bona and Pablo Santurde del Arco on the Italian Mach 40.5 IBSA crossing the Class 40 finish line in fourth place on the 16th Transat Jacques Vabre Normandie Le Havre this afternoon.

A closer look at ATMOS
I spoke to Grant Fox of Scanstrut at METSTRADE 2023 about ATMOS, the waterproof on-board air station engineered to thrive in the challenging marine environment.

It's Black Friday
Happy Black Friday :)

MPU July August September   Barton Marine 2019 600x500
Local sailing star, Evie Mcdonald appointed Festival of Sails first Youth Ambassador
Young local sailing star, 17-year-old Evie McDonald from Geelong has been appointed the Festival of Sails' inaugural Youth Ambassador.

A competitive fleet set for the 2023 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race
A diverse fleet, including multiple former winners, will take on the 628 nautical mile Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race on Boxing Day.

Race Yachts Premium Brokerage – Black Friday Collection
The recently launched JPK 11.80 “Atomic Blonde” is the second JPK 11.80 built right here in Australia. Commissioned by Dr Simon Torvaldsen from WA who is no convert to the brand having previously owning a JPK 10.80 of the same name.

Cyclops Marine 2023 November - MPU   Upffront 2020 Foredeck Club SW MPU
Spectacular Southern Ocean sleigh rides in the McIntyre Ocean Globe Race
It doesn't come much better, or closer racing than this at the bottom of the world, deep in the Southern Ocean. Pen Duick VI FR (14), skipped by Marie Tabarly, is first on the leaderboard, IRC ranking and Flyer Class.

America's Cup: Alinghi Red Bull Racing ready for racing in Jeddah
The members of Alinghi Red Bull Racing taking part in next week's America's Cup Preliminary Regatta have arrived in Jeddah, one week before official events get underway on the Red Sea.

Save on PFDs with Zhik this Black Friday
Keeping safety and practicality at the forefront, the range of Zhik PFDs are certified, streamlined, ergonomic and functional. A favourite of water sport enthusiasts and athletes around the world.?

Rooster 2023 - Aquafleece - MPU   Armstrong-FG-6 300x250
Lloyd Stevenson Boatbuilders - Summer 2023 newsletter and update on projects
LSB's Summer 2023 newsletter and update on projects: Zaphira Goes Home; 16m Elite Mid Pilothouse - Super Structured; Catalyst - New Build - New Design; But Wait, There's More - and it is going to foil; Refit and Maintenance Team: The Big Refit

2023 Harken International Youth Match Racing Championships line-up confirmed!
The 2023 HARKEN International Youth Match Racing Championship will once again host some of the World's best youth match racing talent, with competitors travelling from across the world.

Finn Class News - November 2023: IFA President Rob McMillan sums up the past season
The latest issue include reviews of all the major Finn events during 2023, highlighting the good health of the class with growing numbers and great competition. Also, all the latest news and a huge number of national updates.

Hyde Sails 2022 One Design MPU   HALLSPARS_MAST-&-BOOMS_SW_300X250 SHEARWATER
The new Armstrong Wing FG foilboard range
Armstrong Foils have recently released the Wing FG boards which are the next-generation wingfoiling boards, designed to enable your winging progression.

SailGP cancel Auckland event four months before start - Auckland business reacts
Auckland Council's Event arm Tataki Auckland Unlimited, has advised that SailGP has made the decision to not stage the event in Auckland in March 2024. Auckland business has reacted to the cancellation, and its impact on the City.

Planet Sail - Can the French win the America's Cup?
The French Orient Express Racing Team were the last to enter the 37th America's Cup and last to get onto the water. But, as Stephan Kandler and Bruno Dubois explained in our exclusive interview, they are not here simply to make up the numbers.

C-Tech 2020 Battens 2 300x250   Lloyd Stevenson - Artnautica60 300x250px
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2023 - Revered, relentless, rewarding
For close to 80 years, the international sailing calendar has been brought to a spectacular finale with one of the most legendary contests in the sport.

New Allen products at METSTRADE 2023
We spoke to Ben Harden of Allen at METSTRADE 2023 to find out about the new products they have brought out.

Breiana Whitehead first sailor selected to Australian Olympic Team for Paris 2024
Townsville's Breiana Whitehead has made history today, becoming the first Kitefoil sailor to be selected for an Australian Olympic Team.

Doyle Sails 2020 - Redefining Boundaries 300x250   T Clewring One Design 250
Niksen sets course for the 2023 Rolex Sydney Hobart
Even before the crew of Niksen hoist their sails on Boxing Day, they will have already overcome one of the biggest challenges in offshore sailing.

Sunday's seven close finishes in IMOCAs led home by triumphant Thomas Ruyant and Morgan Lagravière
Bustling Fort de France, the capital of Martinique, has welcomed a stream of Transat Jacques Vabre Normandie Le Havre IMOCA racers, round the clock over a hectic weekend, starting with a truly exceptional win for defending IMOCA champions.

'Sailor Girl' back on board for 2024 Festival of Sails
The Royal Geelong Yacht Club is proud to announce that Australian sailing personality Nic Douglass has signed on to continue as Ambassador and Master of Ceremonies for the 2024 for Festival of Sails 2024.

Whangarei Marina Curious (300 x 250 px)   SOUTHERNSPARS_MAST-&-BOOMS_SW_300X250-AGLAIA
World Sailing Council supports next steps in Governance Reform and approves Olympic Vision document
World Sailing Council met on the final day of the 2023 World Sailing Annual Conference in Málaga to receive a series of reports from each of the committees and address members regarding the direction of the sport and its priorities in the coming year.

Zhik 2023 Black Friday FOOTER

Rolly Tasker Sails 2023 FOOTER

This email was sent to the.recipients@email.address by YY Online Services Ltd.
Towngate House, 2-8 Parkstone Road, Poole, BH15 2PW
Registered in England No. 7895890

Our records show that you signed up to receive news from us on 1 January 2000

Please do not reply to this message as this address cannot receive replies.

You can unsubscribe at any time or email us here if you encounter any difficulties
RS Sailing 2021 - FOOTERPredictWind - GO! exec 728x90 BOTTOMZhik 2024 March - FOOTER