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Cup news, Rolex Sydney Hobart Race, GGR 2018 - USA Newsletter


Cup news, Rolex Sydney Hobart Race, Golden Globe Race 2018

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The 30 year legacy of Stars & Stripes will continue with the newest America's Cup Challenger - photo © Sergio Dionisio

Dear Recipient Name

If you're like me, the non-stop sound of Christmas music sends you running for the marina, which isn't necessarily a place of refuge for North American sailors given this particular holiday's calendar date and the continent's latitude and longitude (Southern California and Florida-based sailors will pay a stiff Karmic penalty in their next life). Fortunately, the sailing world has been generating plenty of attention-grabbing news that (at least so far this holiday season) has helped to insulate my consciousness from seasick-inducing jingles about Frosty, Rudolph and even Grandma, who every year seems to find the underside of Rudolph's hooves.

For starters, the November 30 deadline for entry in the 36th America's Cup, which will be held on the waters off of Auckland, New Zealand, from March 6-21, 2021, saw eight late-hour entries, two of which have now been accepted.

As we discussed last week, the Defender (the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron) and the Challenger of Record (the Circolo Della Vela Sicilia) have accepted the Royal Malta Yacht Club's unconditional challenge, but last week word became public of a second, West Coast-based American challenger whose entry was also accepted sans conditions.

Stars & Stripes, winner of the America's Cup 1987 in the Victory Parade in New York - photo © Daniel Forster
Stars & Stripes, winner of the America's Cup 1987 in the Victory Parade in New York - photo © Daniel Forster

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Any sailor with a pulse will well remember Dennis Conner's 1987 Stars & Stripes challenge, which traveled down under to reclaim a prize that Dennis personally lost in 1983. Conner's Stars & Stripes team was of course victorious, beating the Aussies on their own windblown western Australian waters and returning home to a ticker-tape parade in New York City.

Now, this prestigious moniker will be making the jump to twenty-first-century foiling monohulls. Word broke last week that Stars & Stripes Team USA, flying the colors of the Long Beach Yacht Club, in Long Beach, California, has been accepted by the Defender and the Challenger of Record to compete in "AC36", bringing the total number of accepted challengers up to five, with two of these teams flying Old Glory's proud colors.

"Our name is a nod to Dennis Conner's 'Stars & Stripes' campaigns that defined all-American, America's Cup racing for decades. We are the next generation," said Stars & Stripes Team USA co-founder Mike Buckley (USA; 35), who has been working on this project with his fellow co-founder, top-flight match racing skipper, and four-time Congressional Cup winner Taylor Canfield (USA; 29), in an official team release on the America's Cup website.

Stars & Stripes Team USA, lead by Mike Buckley (right) and Taylor Canfield (left), to challenge for 36th America's Cup - photo © Matt Knighton
Stars & Stripes Team USA, lead by Mike Buckley (right) and Taylor Canfield (left), to challenge for 36th America's Cup - photo © Matt Knighton

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"We have begun assembling our sailing roster and will announce more details soon," said Canfield in the same release. "It's been my professional goal to compete in the America's Cup my whole life and I'm confident we will be very competitive come 2021 in Auckland."

While many questions remain, some important answers have surfaced, including the news that the team has purchased a design and technology package from Emirates Team New Zealand, and they have also made the wise decision to hire JB Braun, a veteran of Oracle Team USA's 2013 and 2017 campaigns (as well as a heck of a nice guy), as head of their design team. Additionally, they announced that construction of their AC75 has already begun in Michigan.

Also in AC news, American Magic, the other American-flagged team that's campaigning for AC36, announced that their team, their scaled-down foiling monohull (dubbed "the Mule"), and their training focus are headed to Florida for the winter.

The Mule, American Magic's 38-foot test boat, sailing in Pensacola, Florida - photo © American Magic
The Mule, American Magic's 38-foot test boat, sailing in Pensacola, Florida - photo © American Magic

"Pensacola brings a lot to the table for our team," said Terry Hutchinson, American Magic's skipper and executive director, in an official team press release. "Pensacola will give us consistently good sailing weather, a large and protected flat water training venue, efficient logistics and a welcoming community. The Port of Pensacola has been very accommodating as we set up our base, and really stepped up to create an ideal facility for an America's Cup team."

Meanwhile, in offshore sailing news, attention is turning to Sydney, Australia, where the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race will start on December 26. As of this writing there are three American-flagged boats entered, namely Joy Ride, Privateer and Prospector. Stay tuned later this week for an interview with John Murkowski, skipper of the Seattle-based Joy Ride team.

Also offshore-related, sailors competing in the Golden Globe Race 2018 continue to make progress towards the Les Sables d'Olonne, France, finishing line, with second-placed Mark Slats (NED) taking a sizeable, 150+ nautical mile bite out of frontrunner Jean-Luc Van Den Heede's (FRA) enviable lead. It's important to remember, however, that Van Den Heede is nursing a damaged rig.

Mark Slats hopes to close the gap on race leader Jean-Luc Van Den Heede - Golden Globe Race 2018 - photo © Christophe Favreau / PPL / GGR
Mark Slats hopes to close the gap on race leader Jean-Luc Van Den Heede - Golden Globe Race 2018 - photo © Christophe Favreau / PPL / GGR

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Still, all is not roses aboard Slats' boat, as word recently broke that the Dutchman has been suffering from bad stomach troubles thanks to some rotten milk. As of this writing, Van Den Heede has some 4,223 miles separating his bow from the finishing line, while Slats is still some 793 miles astern of the Frenchman. But, with over 4,000 nautical miles remaining and a stronger, more capable rig standing aboard Slats' Ohpen Maverick, this one could boil down to a game of (relative) inches played out on a global racecourse.

And finally, British GGR 2018 skipper Susie Goodall, who suffered a boat-destroying pitchpole some 2,000 miles west of Cape Horn, has signaled that she has no interest in croquet or gardening after surviving a harrowing at-sea rescue.

"If you asked me if I would do this again, now knowing what it's really like, I would say yes in a heartbeat!" said Goodall in an official GGR 2018 press release. "You may ask why?! Some people just live for adventure it's human nature. And for me, the sea is where my adventure lies. Having grown up admiring Tracy Edwards and Ellen MacArthur, I just knew that one day I needed to try to do this too. Every seafarer understands the risks involved but that's what makes us stronger and able to overcome other challenges in life."

Susie Goodall enjoying a hot drink in the ambulance that carried her to hospital for a checkup after her arrival in Punta Arenas on 16th Dec. - photo © Javier Contreras / PPL / GGR
Susie Goodall enjoying a hot drink in the ambulance that carried her to hospital for a checkup after her arrival in Punta Arenas on 16th Dec. - photo © Javier Contreras / PPL / GGR

So as we pass the winter solstice this coming Friday and finally start waxing some daylight onto our stingy-short winter days, remember that there's great relief from holiday jingles (not to mention from visiting in-laws, invigorated carolers and, worst of all, the post-Christmas return lines) in the sailing news, especially as we move towards much more interesting phases of AC36, the GGR 2018, and of course, the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race.

May the four winds blow you safely home.

David Schmidt North American Editor

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Countdown begins for 2019 Moth Worlds at Mounts Bay Sailing Club, Australia
The club is set for a massive event with Perth's iconic sea breezes and flat river waters providing what will be the perfect race track for these exciting foiling machines.

2018 West Marine J/70 World Championships Documentary
The depth of talent in the fleet was unprecedented with Olympic Gold Medallist, America's Cup winners, and world champions vying for one of the biggest world championship is the modern era.

Dragons feature new Allen fitout
UK performance sailing hardware manufacturer, Allen Brothers, has been working with world-class boat builders and International Dragon Class experts, Petticrows, to deliver an 8-boat project that aims to promote international racing.

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Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race: German family affair
German yachtsman Freddy Boehnert has sailed over 18,000 nautical miles on his X-50 Lunatix, just to contest the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia's (CYCA) 2018 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race – unusual – as European owners normally ship their boats

Rolex China Sea Race 2020: 30th edition of Asia's blue water classic
The Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club has released the Notice of Race (English and Chinese) and opened entry for the 58th Anniversary of the Rolex China Sea Race.

Gladwell's Line: Stars & Stripes resonates with fanbase
Last Thursday's announcement that the fifth accepted Challenge for the America's Cup would carry the name "Stars & Stripes" received quite a remarkable reception from the New Zealand media, and indeed worldwide.

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Golden Globe Race - Day 169: Jean-Luc Van Den Heede's lead cut by further 154 miles
Dutchman Mark Slats has taken a further 154 miles out French Race leader Jean-Luc Van Den Heede over the past seven days, reducing the gap to 794 miles with 4,300 miles still to run before the winner returns to Les Sables d'Olonne at the end of January.

Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race: Intense preparation with nine days to go
Intense preparation is the name of the game as realisation dawns on owners and crews that only nine days remain before the start of the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia's (CYCA) 2018 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

America's Cup: Dennis Conner on the two US Challengers
Mr America's Cup, Dennis Conner, a veteran of nine contests for the Auld Mug, winning four, gives his insights into the US America's Cup Challenges, including the new Stars & Stripes team

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America's Cup: Images of American Magic foiling in Florida
American Magic, the New York yacht Club's entry in the 36th America's Cup in March 2021 have released new images of the AC75 surrogate, formerly known as "the Mule" (presumably a euphemism for the team's workhorse), she now labeled the AM38.

America's Cup: Images of AC75 surrogate construction and roll-out
The New York Yacht Club's entry in the 2021 America's Cup, American Magic was the first to launch a full-size surrogate yacht (12metre overall or 38ft). American Magic has released some images of the 38fter under construction

In memoriam
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the infamous, and tragic 1998 Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race. A lot has changed since then, from boat design to safety procedures, and so thankfully there has not been a repeat.

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2018 Sail Melbourne International at Royal Brighton Yacht Club - Overall
After challenging race disruptions over the four-day event, caused by the current weather system sitting over Australia's east coast, it was a welcome finish for the close to 400 competitors from all across Australia and from 18 countries.

18ft Skiff NSW Championship on Sydney Harbour - Race 4
The Smeg 18ft Skiff team of Michael Coxon, Ricky Bridge and Mike McKensey gave an awesome display of power sailing as they tamed the 25-knot, gusting to 30-knots, North East wind to take out Race 4 of the NSW 18ft Skiff Championship on Sydney Harbour.

A great Rhum
The 40th anniversary Route du Rhum-Destination Guadeloupe proved to be a memorable edition, with big crowds turning out in Saint Malo to see the record fleet of 123 boats in six divisions start the 3,542-nautical mile race to Pointe-à-Pitre.

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Nassau Cup Ocean Race
Coral Reef YC, Nassau YC and Storm Trysail Club hosted the Nassau Cup Ocean Race from Miami to Nassau, Bahamas being the first Islands in the Stream Series event for the 2018-19 season.

North Sails Weekly Debrief: RORC Transatlantic, Minden in the news, RC44 Season Champs
Clients race 3,000 miles from Lanzarote to Grenada, winning five divisions and a new race record.

Volvo OR: IMOCA joins VO65 to form "The Ocean Race"
Good progress was made and celebrated in Paris this week with IMOCA ratifying a version of their class rule for fully crewed events. “We intend to issue the Notice of Race and open the entry period in the coming days ” - Richard Brisius 250 - 2014   Protector - 300x250
Tip & Shaft: 15 -22 entries expected in two fleets for "The Ocean Race"
In the Espace 2000 at Paris' annual Salon Nautic further details about The Ocean Race, the son and heir of the Volvo Ocean Race, were announced by co-owners Richard Brisius and Johan Salén long time partners in Atlant Racing

J/44 wins Palm Beach “Race to the Buffet”
Elapsed time records fell in the Wirth M. Munroe Ocean Race to Palm Beach, the second event of the 2018-19 SORC Islands in the Stream Series, the fabled Miami to Palm Beach "Race to the Buffet" wrapped up with one of the best feasts in sailing.

J/99 world debut at Paris International Boat Show
The much anticipated introduction of the extraordinary J/99 shorthanded offshore speedster will be taking place at the famous "Salon Nautique", a.k.a. the Paris International Boat Show

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2019 dates are confirmed for the annual Clagett/Oakcliff Match Race Clinic and Regatta
It has been confirmed that the fourth annual Clagett/Oakcliff Match Race Clinic and Regatta for sailors with disabilities will be held September 20-22, 2019. Hosting the clinic and regatta for the second year will be the Sagamore Yacht Club in Oyster Bay.

18ft Skiff 'Supercup' on Sydney Harbour
Following a day of consistent rain, a brief thunderstorm, low visibility and light winds, the inaugural Australian 18 Footers League 18ft Skiff Supercup races got under way in poor sailing conditions, but the weather improved.

Mothquito nominated best design Foiling Awards 2018
Foiling Awards, organised by Foiling Week, are the greatest recognition a foiling boat can achieve worldwide.

2.4mR CanAm Championship Series: Smith takes Nationals and North Americans in back-to-back regattas
While most of the U.S.A. was getting smacked by an early taste of wintry weather and unseasonably cold temperatures, the conditions were more than ideal for sailors in the 2.4 Meter class as they kicked off the 2019 CanAm Championship Series

American Magic opens Winter Base at Port of Pensacola
New York Yacht Club American Magic, U.S. Challenger for the 36th America's Cup, today announced that the Port of Pensacola will serve as the team's winter training base in late 2018 and early 2019. The team was formed in 2017 to win the America's Cup.

US Sailing releases Tokyo 2020 Olympic Trials System
US Sailing Olympic Sailing Committee (OSC) has released the selection procedures for the 2020 U.S. Olympic Sailing Team. The Games of the XXXII Olympiad will take place from July 24 through August 9, 2020.

Record number of entries and a new Corinthian Trophy for Transpac 50
Race Managers at the Transpacific Yacht Club are pleased to announce that next July's 50th biennial edition of the 2225-mile Transpac race from Los Angeles to Honolulu has set a new record of 82 entries to date.

America's Cup: Stars & Stripes gets a new life with Long Beach team
Auckland and indeed America's Cup fans around the world will once again see the Stars & Stripes team contesting the most prestigious trophy in Sailing. "Mr America's Cup" has given his blessing to the new team representing the Long Beach Yacht Club.

The IMOCA class continues to push forward
The IMOCA class held its annual general meeting on Tuesday 11th December in Paris. This gathering enabled the class to present its appraisal of what was a very positive 2018 season coming to a climax with an outstanding edition of the Route du Rhum

Clipper Race crew claims National Yachting Award
Quebecan Clipper 2017-18 Race crew member Simon DuBois, who raced around the world on board the Visit Seattle team yacht, has been announced as Québec Sailor of the Year.

Grinders Coffee SOLAS Big Boat Challenge wrap for 2018
What a day it was this year for the Grinders Coffee SOLAS Big Boat Challenge!

Rolex Sydney Hobart: Spithill injures elbow - out of Race
Twice America's Cup champion, Jimmy Spithill has incurred an elbow tendon injury while preparing for Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race on Comanche 100

America's Cup: New Challenger from home of Matchracing
The second US team now accepted as a Challenger for the America's Cup has been working on a challenge for over a year - predating Emirates Team New Zealand's win in Bermuda on June 26, 2017

Stars & Stripes Team USA to challenge for 36th America’s Cup
Long Beach Yacht Club announced today that its entry, Stars & Stripes Team USA, has formally been accepted by the Defender and Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron as the fifth Challenger of the 36th America's Cup.

Last chance Sail Sale at P&B
15% off all sails and covers ends 31.12.18 so HURRY and get your orders in now to take advantage of this fantastic deal and avoid disappointment.


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