Saturday 5 March 2011

RC44: Fried Elliott's Images of the First Day of Fleet Racing in San Diego

Image copyright Fried Elliott/

Image copyright Fried Elliott/

Image copyright Fried Elliott/

Image copyright Fried Elliott/

Image copyright Fried Elliott/

Image copyright Fried Elliott/

Image copyright Fried Elliott/

Image copyright Fried Elliott/

Image copyright Fried Elliott/

David Murphy (USA) at the helm of Ironbound. Image copyright Fried Elliott/

Image copyright Fried Elliott/

Image copyright Fried Elliott/


BWR: Images of Central Lechera Asturiana in Wellington with Broken Mast

Image copyright Mark Hill/

Image copyright Mark Hill/

Image copyright Mark Hill/

Image copyright Mark Hill/

Image copyright Mark Hill/

Image copyright Mark Hill/

Image copyright Mark Hill/

Image copyright Mark Hill/

Mark Hill
Barcelona World Race

Close at the top of Youth Sailing Grand Prix ladder as racing heads to Adelaide

by Craig Heydon

After the opening two rounds of the new Youth Sailing Grand Prix the competition is tight at the top of all classes as racing heads to South Australia for round three.

The Youth Sailing Grand Prix has been developed to help create Australia’s next group of world and Olympic champion sailors.

Competition kicked off just after Christmas with class specific Australian Championships before the sailors hit the water at the OAMPS Insurance Brokers Australian Youth Championship.

The Youth Sailing Grand Prix is open to Australian sailors under 19 years of age and is designed to build a strong national competition that encourages youth participation, providing young sailors with the chance to race at a number of regattas around the country against strong opposition.

After the opening two rounds on the east coast racing now heads halfway across the country for the Adelaide International Regatta, a three day regatta from March 12 to 14.

West Australian Matthew Wearn leads the way in the Laser Radial boys class with a perfect two wins from two regattas. Wearn has a slender lead over Mitchell Kennedy from Queensland who finished one place behind in both regattas with Victorian Jeremy O’Connell third.

In the Laser Radial girls class Queensland’s Ashley Stoddart leads the way ahead of New South Wales sailor Alex South with a second Queenslander, Ella Evans, rounding out the top three.

In the Laser 4.7 boys class Benjamin Walkemeyer of Western Australia has won the opening two rounds to lead from New South Welshman Nicholas Connor with Tasmanian Kailis Johnson third.

Queenslander, and 2010 Youth Olympic Games representative, Madison Kennedy, leads the Laser 4.7 girls class with Sophie Chesterman of Tasmania second and Victorian Melissa Hitchen-Haw third.

The Bic Techno class has only had one round of racing so far, the OAMPS Insurance Brokers Australian Youth Championship and Eamon Robertshaw from Western Australian leads the boys class, with Sydney sailor Sam Treharne second and West Australian Alex Stephens third.

In the Bic Techno girls class Annalise Gilbert of New South Wales is first with Queenslander Lara O’Brien second.

The double handed classes are just as tight with only a handful of points separating the leaders in the Hobie 16, 420 and 29er classes.

In the Hobie 16 class New South Welshman Paul Darmanin and his South Australian crew Alecs Vucic lead after winning the opening two regattas, including taking out every single race at the OAMPS Insurance Brokers Australian Youth Championship. The pair are followed by two New South Wales crews with Lucas Price and Joshua Singh second and Bryce Haffner and Caleb White third.

Carrie Smith and Ella Clark, from Western Australia, lead the 420 girls class, with Queenslanders Elloise Brake and Jaime Ryan second and New South Wales sailors Milly Bennett and Jessica Russell third.

In the 420 boys class Queenslanders Angus Galloway and Alex Gough have gotten their Youth Sailing Grand Prix campaign off to a great start with two wins from two events to lead from Victorians Thomas Klemens and William Llewelyn with Tasmanians Alec Bailey and Henry Goodfellow third.

Queensland pair Josh Franklin and Lewis Brake have two wins in the 29er class to lead from two Victorian crews, James Sly and Thomas Dwyer, and George Davies and Jack Lloyd.

In the race for the State Trophy, Queensland has a slender five point lead over New South Wales with Western Australia nine points further back in third.

Yachting Australia is awarding prize money for the Youth Sailing Grand Prix, with up to $3,000 per winning crew, dependent on the class. This is designed to assist with the costs incurred campaigning with the winners required to use the funds to compete at further events.

Following the Adelaide International Regatta racing then heads to the OAMPS Insurance Brokers Victorian State Championships in April before the focus then shifts to Western Australia for the Mandurah Easter Regatta before moving to Queensland for the OAMPS Insurance Brokers Queensland Youth Week in July.

After a break racing resumes in October with the OAMPS Insurance Brokers New South Wales State Youth Championships before a final race to the line with Sail Sydney, the Hobart Showdown Regatta, Sail Melbourne and Sail Brisbane.

For more information on the Youth Series Grand Prix visit or follow the series on Twitter at The policy document and point score for the series can be found on the Yachting Australia website.

Yachting Australia

BWR: Jean-Pierre Dick et Loïck Peyron : premiers au cap Horn

Loick Peyron and Jean-Pierre Dick pass Cape Horn. Image copyright Virbac Paprec 3.

par Barcelona World Race media

C’est à 11h20 (heure française) que Virbac-Paprec 3, leader de la Barcelona World Race, a doublé le cap Horn, ce jeudi 3 mars. Les deux co-skippers, Jean-Pierre Dick et Loïck Peyron ont salué ce rocher mythique, qui marque la frontière entre l’Antarctique et le continent américain, après 61 jours 22 heures 20 minutes de course depuis le départ de Barcelone, le 31 décembre dernier.

Positionnés en avant d’une très creuse dépression qui menaçait de lever des vents très soutenus et une mer très formée dans le sud de la Terre de Feu, Virbac-Paprec 3 a laissé le Pacifique Sud dans son sillage. Pour Jean-Pierre Dick, comme pour Loïck Peyron, ce passage du cap Horn est le 3è dans leur carrière de marin.

Tenant du titre, lors de la première édition de ce tour du monde à la voile en double, Jean-Pierre Dick a déjà paré le cap Horn en tête sur le parcours long de 25 000 milles (46 300 km), le 20 janvier 2008, après 59 jours, 18 heures et 20 minutes de course. Sur cette édition 2010-2011, rappelons que le parcours sur la route des trois caps (Bonne, Espérance, Leeuwin) et le détroit de Cook est rallongé de 600 milles par les portes de sécurité virtuelles placées pour éviter aux équipages de progresser au milieu des glaces. Depuis le départ de la cité catalane, les co-skippers de Virbac-Paprec 3 ont fait deux escales techniques : la première à Récife au Brésil de 13 heures, et la seconde de 48 heures à Wellington.

Ce jeudi 3 mars, les espagnols du bateau MAPFRE, Iker Martinez et Xabi Fernandez, pointés à 68 milles des deux leaders de la course sont attendus dans quelques heures pour doubler à leur tour, en deuxième position, cette sentinelle aussi prestigieuse et redoutée, à la frontière du Pacifique et de l’Atlantique.

Barcelona World Race

Audi MedCup: 2011 Circuit Builds Traction for a Great Start in May

With just under 12 weeks until the first Trophy regatta of the season the 2011 Audi MedCup Circuit is taking final shape and is set to feature no fewer than 11 brand new build boats across the well established TP52 Series Class and the new Soto 40 class

Circuito Atlantico Sur Rolex Cup 2011 © Rolex.

by Sabina Mollart-Rogerson

“We are just delighted with the response that we have had from owners and potential owners for this coming season. When we set up the Circuit originally we were aiming to build and keep developing a racing platform which has longevity, offering exciting close races each year to high level competitive owners and top crews and this is still being delivered.” Comments Nacho Postigo, Technical Director of the Audi MedCup Circuit, the competition which is bringing in much new blood for this season. The also co-founder of the Circuit believes that the level will not drop one single milimetre on the previous season, “indeed I think it might be higher”, says Postigo.

Six new build TP52’s are expected. Previously announced are Synergy (RUS), Quantum Racing (USA), Rán (SWE), Container (GER), Audi Sailing Team powered by ALL4ONE (GER) and a sixth boat which will be sailed by the very successful Matador (ARG) team, the details of which have not been made public yet. “We have a group of owners with new units who are investing in the best boats they can have, and will similarly be ensuring they have the top talent available on their programmes. All will be trying to be the best of the best, and will want the best of the best,” says Postigo.

Also the Soto 40 Class is flourishing with more than 20 boats built and launched now. Judging by feedback since the decision was announced in Cagliari, Sardinia last September, this European debut season for the 40 Series on the Audi MedCup Circuit will be closely watched by a wide audience, but especially by potential owners, many of whom have already indicated they are interested in building boats for 2012 and beyond.

“The 40 Series is going to be very interesting as a one-design class where there is no design evolution allowed, and so we will see the South American teams who have experience of the class up against some of the best sailors in Europe and the way they set up and campaign their boats. I think that the standard and the action will be at a higher level than we saw with the smaller boat class last season,” says Postigo. The fleet is becoming increasingly well established as the reference new 40 foot One Design globally.

Of the five 2011 Audi MedCup Circuit venues, four are already set for return visits to cities which featured in the 2010 itinerary in Portugal, Spain and Italy, while final negotiations in France are being progressed. The final 2011 schedule is expected to be published in around 15 days time.

There will be Owner-Driver trophies in both the 52 Series fleet and in the 40 Series fleet, with at least almost half of the Soto 40’s expected to be owner driven and a growing number of owner-drivers in the 52 Series. These trophies will be awarded across the season long championship.

Audi MedCup

BWR: Health worries for Michèle Paret on board Mirabaud

Michèle Paret on board Mirabaud off New Zealand. Image copyright Mirabaud.

by Bernard Schopfer

Having suffered from anaemia for the past month, Michèle Paret has now been forced into a time-out in order to recuperate before the final push for home. Dominique Wavre is now effectively sailing the boat single-handedly.

The difficult sailing conditions that Mirabaud is currently experiencing are not making life easy for Michèle Paret and haven’t given her the opportunity to rest and overcome the anemia she has been suffering from since the Indian Ocean crossing.

Speaking to us via satellite phone, Dominique Wavre explained, “Today has been very difficult; we been crossing a zone with squalls of over 40 knots and the conditions on board have been very rough. The sea is dangerously messed up and we’ve had to batten down the hatches to avoid the inside the boat being swamped by waves. In these conditions, gybing is a very risky business, but luckily for the moment, nothing is broken.

Last night, in the middle of a manoeuvre, Michele took a heavy fall in the cockpit and passed out while I was on the foredeck. When she came to, she managed to get back inside the boat and with considerable courage even made it back out shortly afterwards to help me get through the gybe.”

So far, it seems that the medication we took on board in New Zealand hasn’t helped restore her to full health; for the last few days she’s been suffering a great deal and we have had to reduce sail to make the conditions easier. The performance of the boat is obviously affected, but Michèle is in no state to be out on deck at the moment. For the moment she is on the sidelines and I’m back in ‘Vendée Globe’ mode, power-napping for 20 minutes when I can.

At the moment it’s still stormy, with the wind between 20 and 30 knots. We are expecting a short period of calm in a few hours time before the wind picks up again all the way to Cape Horn. Getting round the Horn will be a huge relief for us to be honest.”

Dominique Wavre and Michèle Paret are not planning to stop in Ushuaia, hoping that the rest Michèle is currently getting will be enough to get her back on her feet for the final dash across the Atlantic. Antonio Palma, Associate and CEO of Mirabaud stresses that “the health of the two co-skippers obviously takes priority over the competition. We’re with Michèle in spirit and wish her a quick recovery and are 100% behind the team in their decision to put security first.”

Barcelona World Race

Aussie 18 Foot Skiffs: Preview of the Winning Appliances JJ Giltinan Championship

Gotta Love It 7 during the 2010 JJ Giltinan Championship. Image copyright Frank Quealey.

by Frank Quealey

A fleet of 29 teams, representing USA, UK and New Zealand, as well as Australian crews from NSW, Western Australia and Queensland will contest the Winning Appliances JJ Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship, which begin tomorrow on Sydney Harbour.

The first event of what is the world’s top 18ft Skiff regatta is the traditional Invitation Race to allow all teams to become acquainted with the harbour conditions.

Races 1 and 2 of the championship will be sailed on Saturday and Sunday before the first of two lay days on Monday.

Pre regatta favourite is likely to be the defending champion Seve Jarvin and his Gotta Love It 7 team of Sam Newton and Scott Babbage, but there will be strong opposition from a number of top class teams.

Current Australian champions Michael Coxon, Aaron Links and Trent Barnabas (all multiple Giltinan winners) on Thurlow Fisher Lawyers have had to overcome some gear problems in recent outings but are sure to push Jarvin, and anyone else, to the limits.

Past champions, Howie Hamlin (USA), who is a two times winner (2002 and 2003) and John Winning (2000) will each be striving for another win.

Both Hamlin (CST Composites) and Winning (Yandoo) have new boats built for the championship and have displayed the type of form in lead up races to make them definite chances.

Another strong team is Smeg, which is skippered by the current Interdominion 12ft Skiff champion Nick Press.

UK’s Andy Budgen (Hyde Sails), WA’s Grant Rollerson (SLAM) and Matt Searle (Red Claw Wines) will also figure strongly in the championship as they all have proven records in previous Giltinan and other international regattas.

New Zealand’s team will be missing three of their regular skippers but Alex Vallings and his CT Sailbattens team are sure to make their presence felt and uphold the Kiwi spirit.

There are several new and young teams contesting the Giltinan Championship for the first time and the 62nd contest should be one of the best since it was first staged in 1938.

List of entries and crews:

jeremy wilmot
paul montague, paul atkins

asko appliances
marcus ashley-jones
stewart wells. aron everett

simon nearn
gerard smith, keegan york

fisher & paykel
andrew chapman
tim baraclough, ewan duckworth

gotta love it 7
seve jarvin
sam newton, scott babbage

evan walker
ted hackney, jeremy roberts

jonathan whitty
greg dixon, james hozak

pure blonde
james francis
brad phillips, Cameron mc donald

rag & famish hotel
jack macartney
tom clout, drewe waller

red claw wines
matthew searle
archie massey, mike mc kenzie

sharks/coldwell banker
david haseldine
andrew wong, ian henderson

nick press
dan phillips, dave ewings

spectrum trimming
luke parkinson
nick daly. tba

tf collect
mark kennedy
tom anderson, ryan houston

the kitchen maker
brett van munster
darren mc kavanagh, tai elliott

thurlow fisher lawyers
michael coxon
aaron links, trent barnabas

john winning
andrew hay, dave gibson


queenslander 1 (q1)
david witt
alan mansfield, barry flannigan


black swan
david gilmour
fang warren, pete hariss

grant rollerson
anthony young, peter nicholson

Panasonic 2
scott glaskin
tba, tba


ct sailbattens
alex vallings
chris kitchen, joshua mc cormack

maersk line
graham catley
hayden whitburn, brett sellers

stunt academy
chris hirst
stu wilson, erwan grossman

david mc diarmid
andrew archibald, murray england


hyde sails
andy budgen
dan wilsdon, matt wark

peters & may
jarrod simpson
ian turnbull, adam ovington


cst composites
howie hamlin
fritz lanzinger, paul allen

kinder caring
skip mc cormack
jody mc cormack, matt mc kinlay

Race dates are:

Race 1 Saturday March 5
Race 2 Sunday March 6
Race 3 Tuesday March 8
Race 4 Wednesday March 9
Race 5 Thursday March 10
Race 6 Saturday March 12
Race 7 Sunday March 13

All races will start at 3pm, with the exceptions of Races 1 and 6, which will start at 4pm.

A spectator ferry will follow each race, leaving Double Bay Wharf 30 minutes before the scheduled race start time.

PS Podium Picking Competition

A unique and fun way to follow your favourite boat(s) in the Giltinan 18ft Skiff Championship to be sailed on Sydney Harbour from 5-13 March (see exact race dates below) is to enter the Australian 18 Footers League’s “Pick the Podium” tipping competition.

As the promoters of the competition say: “It’s fun and it’s free to enter”.

All you have to do is go to and click on ‘video’. Register, click on “pick the podium”, read the tipping information and enter your picks.

The race dates are:
Saturday 5 March Race 1
Sunday 6 March Race 2
Tuesday 8 March Race 3
Wednesday 9 March Race 4
Thursday 10 March Race 5
Saturday 12 March Race 6
Sunday 13 March Race 7

Amongst the prizes are bar fridge from, SLAM hats and t-shirts, Red Claw wines, Pure Blonde beer and Barz Optics sunglasses.

Don’t forget: “It’s fun and it’s free to enter”

Aussie 18 Footers League

WMRT: Radich Confident of Delivering Knockout Blow on Return to WMRT

Jesper Radich. Image copyright SubZero Images/WMRT.

by WMRT media

With one World Tour Championship already under his belt Denmark’s Jesper Radich is confident he can mark his full time return to the World Match Racing Tour (WMRT) after eight years away with a knock-out blow and secure a second Championship.

“Match racing is like a boxing match, a lot of it is about feeling strong and having your opponent think you’re strong. My goal is to win it. I’m realistic in that I’m putting a new team together and so it may take us a little while to get going. We need to spend some time working together but even still I’m very confident and have set my expectations very high,” said Radich.

One of sailing’s most affable and friendly characters away from the water, Radich is one of match racing’s most steely competitors on the water and is looking to make an instant impact on his return. “We are going to go out there this year knowing what we want to do and going to go for it,” added Radich.

Returning to First Love

Having blazed to glory in only his second year on the Tour in 2002-3, Radich was catapulted into the sailing spotlight and given the chance to pursue a variety of opportunities. However, while the form of sailing that has kept Radich employed over the last eight years has continued to change, one thing that has remained constant is his love of match racing.

“I have always been interested in different types of sailing but after we won the WMRT I was able to make my transition to fulltime sailing. When we won the Tour it was the first time I’d taken money away from an event and it really put my name in the international headlines.”

“In 2004 I started sailing in events on an 80 footer which was a stepping stone to the America’s Cup. Then in the winter of 2004 I was asked to join the Spanish America’s Cup team so I sailed with them for the next two-and-a-half years.”

“During my time with the 32nd Cup there was a lot of match racing but it’s a very different type. It’s bigger boats and more about managing the boats size and the crew. You need to put a lot more thought into the way you sail. I really received a complete education and learnt lots about the technical side of sailing.”

“All this slowly lead to more jobs and so I decided to stay as a professional sailor but I didn’t leave myself enough time to go match racing and I found myself really starting to miss it. In 2010 I had time to go out match racing and decided to give it a go on the Tour to see what would happen. It went really well and I thought ‘hey this is fun, lets keep going’.”

In It to Win It

Last year was more than just a bit of fun for Radich who sent out an ominous message for his rivals with a quite incredible record of three seconds and a third from his four wildcard appearances on the Tour.

“We only sailed 4 events last year, half the amount of the others, so if you take the points and average them we would actually have come out in second place,” said Radich who knows that on his day he has the beating of anyone on the match racing circuit.

While Radich is keen to distance himself from singling out potential rivals, the Dane has been swift to lay down a psychological marker ahead of the season, reminding his 2011 rivals, that “Mirsky is the only one of this year’s Tour Card Holders that beat us last year, and they only beat us in one event, we beat all the others.”

A Tougher Challenge

While Radich has shown that he still has the skills to compete at the very highest level of match racing he is under no illusions that the game has come a long way from when he stood at the top of the sport.

“The WMRT is a bit more polished now and run as a much more professional organisation with really well established events. As they have gained more experience running it over the years the events have gone from strength to strength. The teams are also a lot more organised, even the young teams, there is a more professional approach from them all.”

“The game has certainly lifted over the years and there are now a lot more professional sailors making the competition a lot closer than it was back then. If you look at the results from the Qualifying Round at one of the first competitions of the year, the points score from the team at the top of the round to the team in 8th place is extremely close.”

“I sail very differently now to how I did back then. I’m much more organised, back then I was a little more crash and go. I’m not going to be the way I was when I last won, I’m not going to be the same crazy match racer, I’m going to be a lot more organised and structured.”

“We are still developing as a team but we should have a strong crew for this year’s Tour, we have a good combination of young guys and experienced guys.”

Preparing for Battle

Competing out on the water is just half the job for top international skippers who have to double up as businessmen to be able to put together a competitive team with the finances to race at the highest level.

With the first event of the Tour, Match Race France, taking place on May 10, many teams are beginning to put training plans in place but for Radich there are a few finishing touches that need addressing first. “At the moment we need to finalise sponsorship of the team which is our main priority, but we have some training camps organised and can’t wait to get out on the water.”


Argo Challenge's Karol Jablonski Wins DN European Championship

DN ice yachts. Supplied image.

by Lynn Fitzpatrick

Argo Challenge's Karol Jablonski is the God of Ice! Jablonski added his third DN European Championship victory, in Saaremaa, Estonia, to his record eight World Championship titles. He has been runner up at the Europeans and the Worlds twice and four times, respectively and is the most decorated DN iceboat sailor in history.

Jablonski left his mark on the ice boating world in the 1980s. After taking eight years off from championship iceboat racing, he followed his passion, donned his helmet, sharpened his blades and returned to the DN. The ice and winds were ideal during the opening day of racing in Saaremaa. By Jablonski's estimates, the winds were 14-18 knots and he skittered along at 120 -140 knots in his sled.

Jablonski surprised himself and the rest of the 155-sled fleet by dominating the first day of racing in A Division with a 1,1,3,1,6. Light air followed for the remaining heats during the next two days. Jablonskis scoreline in the middle of the regatta included two mid-fleet finishes that were discarded. He was on fire at the end of the regatta, finishing it off with a sizzling 2,2,1,1 and a total score of 18 points in the 11-heat regatta.

Jablonski, still overwhelmed by the performance, commented, "It's fantastic! It's crazy! I surprised everybody, even myself. This was a really nice comeback after eight years of not participating in the Worlds or the European Championships. I'm very happy."

Jablonski went into the regatta with a great attitude. He was well prepared and he had agreed to join the Argo Challenge, a prospective Americas Cup team that includes able-bodied sailors, the likes of Jablonski, and extremely talented athletes with disabilities such as Lars Grael, twice Olympic medalist in the Tornado Class who lost a leg in a boating accident in 1998.

Jablonski is a top America's Cup helmsman and Grael has the best record as a skipper at the 2009 and 2010 Star World Championships. The two plan to surround themselves with talented athletes, designers, engineers, management and sponsors as they prepare Argo Challenge for the 34th Americas Cup that will be held in multihulls in San Francisco Bay in 2013.

2011 DN European Championship

Series Standing - 33 races scored - Final

(Entries=155) DN FLEET A | DN FLEET B | DN FLEET C

Division: DN FLEET A (54 boats) (top)

Pos Sail Skipper 1A 2A 3A 4A 5A 6A 7A 8A 9A 10A 11A Total
1 P 36 Jablonski, Karol -1 ,1, 3, 1, 6, [23], [23], 2, 2, 1, 1 - 18
2 P 31 ROBERT, GRACZYK 5, 3, 1, 4, [12], 4, 1, 3, 5, [17], 7- 33
3 P 155 Zakrzewski, Lukasz 4, [11], 4, 5, 1, 1, [12], 4, 3, 10, 2 - 34
4 P 55 Zakrzewski, Tomasz -2, 13, [14], 6, 4, 7, 9, 1, 1, [30], 8 - 51
5 P 431 RADZKI, JAREK 8, 6, 5, 2, [17], [19], 15, 8, 12, 2, 10 - 68
6 P 164 Pawel, Burczynski -7, 4, [27], 7, 16, 5, 8, 14, [20], 3, 9 -73
7 M 53 Hamrák, Péter 3, 2, 22, 10, 10, 3, 3, 10, 21, [39], [35] - 84
8 G890 Petzke, Holger -13, [21], 2, 14, 13, 2, 7, 17, [55/DNF], 14, 5 - 87
9 O311 Alvikis, Matiss 12, 17, [43], 11, [19], 9, 11, 7, 4, 7, 19 - 97
10 P 114 Burczynski, Michal -6, 15, 16, 9, 9, 13, [26], 13, 7, [21], 11 - 99

Argo Challenge

RC44: Paul Cayard Reports from Day One in San Diego

On board with Paul Cayard helming Katusha in the match racing. Image copyright Fried Elliott/

by Paul Cayard

A very good day for both Artemis Racing and Katusha with four wins each out of five races.

On Katusha we were happy with our results but I would not characterize our sailing as smooth. Yet, we got the job done.

For our first three races of the day, we had the "Curmudgeons" onboard as guests. First Craig for two races, including the all important Russian National Championship, then Tom for the third. As soon as the Lewecks left us, we lost. We pulled ourselves back together to win our last race of the day.

We ended up tied with four other teams, some of whom raced six races. There is no final scoring for match racing at each event this year, it just rolls on and the final score is tallied at the end of the year.

Tomorrow, starts the fleet racing which will see Bob "Peaches" Little on the helm and I will move to tactician.

The forecast for tomorrow is more of the same, Westerly winds at about 10 knots.

Cayard Sailing
Artemis Racing

RC44: Stadium sailing in San Diego

The 2011 RC44 Championship Tour opened with a day of stadium sailing off Broadway Pier, San Diego

Ceeref and Puerto Calero enjoy a close match downwind. Image copyright Fried Elliott/

by Dobbs Davis

The match racing teams duked it out in the pre-starts, sweeping within feet of the crowds on Broadway Pier in an effort to wipe opponents off their tail. At the end of the six flights of racing for the eleven boats, five of them were tightly grouped on four wins, although with just a single defeat, Aqua, Artemis and Katusha hold a slight advantage over ORACLE Racing and Ceeref, the latter pair having lost two races each.

Evgeniy Neugodnikov, on Synergy, gets hooked. Image copyright Gilles Martin-Raget/

The match racing will not continue until the second Tour event in Austria. So although there were no winners today, there were some important indicators to form and no shortage of action. Russell Coutts was on Ellison’s shoulder as tactician for an incident filled day aboard Oracle Racing, making crucial plays to grab two come-from-behind wins. ‘We seemed to do ok when we got behind, and we were behind in most of the races today,’ was Ellison’s comment afterwards.

One that they were definitely behind in was the race against Torbjorn Tornqvist’s Artemis. Morgan Larson has taken over in the tactician’s role and Artemis came out all guns blazing, losing just the single race to Islas Canarias Puerto Calero. But against ORACLE Racing they were strong from the start, as Ellison admitted afterwards, ‘We had a couple of races that weren’t too close, we could just barely see Morgan sailing away into the sunset.’

Larry Ellison, on ORACLE Racing, pushes Ceeref. Image copyright Gilles Martin-Raget/

Another of the in-form teams was Chris Bake’s Aqua, with Cameron Appleton in the tactician’s role. Aqua won four from five, taking their only defeat against Paul Cayard on Katusha. Afterwards, Cayard was effusive on the topic of the stadium sailing format that the RC44 class was embracing. Asked to comment on returning to San Diego and looking back on the town’s America’s Cup years, Cayard said, “To be back in San Diego is fun... The best America’s Cup sailing we had in San Diego was the [IACC] 1994 Worlds when we raced inside the bay. This is the perfect stadium for this size boat, like San Francisco is the perfect stadium for the America’s Cup, and it’s about time we figured out how to put these races inside a stadium close to the people, and I’m applauding San Diego for that.” Igor Lah’s Ceeref was the final boat on four points, but only just – they were one of the victims of ORACLE Racing’s last gasp passing moves.

For the rest of the fleet it was a question of comparing results to goals. Rene Mangold’s thought on the single victory for Team Austria was, ‘We won one race, and that was one more than we expected.’ The fleet newcomers aboard David Murphy’s Ironbound will have every right to be less philosophical. They made a great start with two straight wins, but couldn’t keep it up, taking penalties and losing the next three on the bounce. Elizabeth Kratzig Burnham had come second in the 2010 ISAF Women’s Match Racing Worlds with Sally Barkow and Alana O’Reilly and was steering the starts for Ironbound. Asked about the comparisons, she said, “I don’t think you can really compare the competition, the competition here is the best you are going to find anywhere.”

ORACLE RC44 Cup San Diego - Day 1:

Racing continues from the 3rd to the 6th March with four days of fleet racing.

List of entrants – Oracle RC44 Cup San Diego

AEZ RC44 Sailing Team (AUT)
Owner – Rene Mangold (AUT)
Professional Skipper – Peter Evans (NZL)

Artemis Racing (SWE)
Owner - Torbjorn Tornqvist (SWE)
Professional Skipper – Morgan Larson (USA)

Ironbound (USA)
Owner – David Murphy (USA)
Professional Skipper – Kevin Burnham (USA)

Islas Canarias Puerto Calero (ESP)
Owner– Daniel Calero (ESP)
Professional Skipper - Jose Maria Ponce (ESP)

Paul Cayard at the helm of Katusha. Image copyright Gilles Martin-Raget/

Katusha (RUS)
Professional Skipper – Paul Cayard (USA)

No Way Back (NED)
Owner – Pieter Heerema (NED)
Professional Skipper – Rod Dawson (NZL)

Owner – Larry Ellison (USA)
Professional Skipper – Russell Coutts (NZL)

Peninsula Petroleum Sailing Team (GBR)
Owner – John Bassadone (GBR)
Professional Skipper - Iñaki Castañer (ESP)

Owner – Igor Lah (SLO)
Professional Skipper –Michelle Ivaldi (ITA)

Synergy Russian Sailing Team (RUS)
Owner – Valentin Zavadnikov (RUS)
Professional Skipper – Evgeniy Neugodnikov (RUS)

Team Aqua (UAE)
Owner -Chris Bake (CAN)
Professional Skipper- Cameron Appleton (NZL)

Follow the action with live tracking and blog at:

BWR: Iker and Xabi, 24 hours from Cape Horn

It is expected that “MAPFRE” will round the legendary Cape tomorrow

by Helena Paz

Iker Martínez and Xabi Fernández are drawing ever closer to the legendary Cape Horn, the southernmost Cape of Tierra del Fuego and a sailing chart landmark. The latest forecasts continue to indicate that tomorrow will be the day Iker and Xabi round the Cape to commence the final leg in the race, the 7,200 miles home to Barcelona.

Since they passed the previous gate in the Pacific, “MAPFRE” has chosen to stay further South than the regatta leader, following a course closer to the orthodromic line, the shortest route to the finish. Between 14:00 GMT and 19:00 GMT yesterday, Iker and Xabi were back on the attack, cutting down the gap with Dick and Peyron by 10 miles. However, during the night the leaders got away and with the latest position report at 09:00 GMT “MAPFRE” were able to slow down the escape by “Virbac Paprec 3” with the gap standing between the two entries at 87 miles.

Having picked speed back up to 19.2 knots in the 09:00 GMT position report, Xabi Fernández made these comments in a brief email sent to his team, letting them know that things weren't easy on board “MAPFRE”: “We are going like crazy. The truth is that between one thing and the other things are tough. This could get ugly.”

We'll see if Cape Horn could also be an area where distances could be again reduced between the French and Spanish. Xabi touched on this yesterday: “We were very close once and although we've dropped back somewhat, they may be the chance for some compression at Cape Horn and we'll get back together.”

Day 61 - 09:00 GMT

1. VIRBAC-PAPREC 3 (Jean Pierre Dick - Loïck Peyron) FRA, 7,365.5 miles from finish
2. MAPFRE (Iker Martínez - Xabi Fernández) ESP, +79.7 miles
3. RENAULT Z. E. (Pachi Rivero - Antonio Piris) ESP, +1,372.2 miles
4. NEUTROGENA FÓRMULA NORUEGA (Boris Herrmann - Ryan Breymaier) NOR, +1,405.5 miles
5. MIRABAUD (Dominique Wavre - Michéle Paret) SUI, +1,598.3 miles
6. GROUPE BEL (Kito de Pavant - Sebastien Audigane) FRA, +1,875.9 miles
7. ESTRELLA DAMM SAILING TEAM (Alex Pella - Pepe Ribes) ESP, +1,955.8 miles
8. HUGO BOSS (Wouter Verbraak - Andy Meiklejohn) GBR, +2,329.1 miles
9. GAES CENTROS AUDITIVOS (Dee Caffari - Anna Corbella) GBR/ESP, +2,495.1 miles
10. FÒRUM MARÍTIM CATALÀ (Gerard Marín - Ludovic Aglaor) ESP, +4,184.8 miles **MAKING A TECHNICAL STOPOVER IN WELLINGTON**
11. CENTRAL LECHERA ASTURIANA (Juan Merediz - Fran Palacio) ESP, +4,354.5 miles
12. WE ARE WATER (Jaume Mumbrú - Cali Sanmartí) ESP, +4,940.3 miles
** FONCIA (Michel Desjoyeaux - François Gabart) FRA, RACE ABANDONED 26th January.
** PRÉSIDENT (Jean le Cam - Bruno García) FRA/ESP, RACE ABANDONED 12th January.

Barcelona World Race

BWR: Jamais deux sans trois !

par Anne-Charlotte Meyer

J+61. 18h45. JP et Loïck naviguent au portant à vive allure vers le Horn. Au fur et à mesure, le vent va se renforcer et la mer grossir. Le franchissement devrait être à la hauteur des légendes de ce coin du monde qui sépare les océans Pacifique et Atlantique. Pour JP et Loïck, ce sera leur troisième passage respectif.

En solo
Leurs premières fois étaient sur le Vendée Globe. Loïck, en 1990, poursuivait le futur vainqueur Titouan Lamazou. Ses deux frères, Bruno et Stéphane, étaient venus le saluer. JP, en 2005, venait de casser sa bôme (espar qu'il allait réparer dans la remontée de l'Atlantique). La nuit du passage, JP avait croisé le sillage d'Ellen MacArthur qui était sur le record du tour du monde en so! litaire et en multicoque.

En équipage
Leurs secondes fois étaient en équipage. Loïck, en 2001, skippait le grand multicoque Innovation Explorer sur The Race en seconde position derrière le futur vainqueur, Club Med. JP, le 10 janvier 2008, franchissait en tête le Cap Horn sur la Barcelona World Race avec Damian Foxall après 59 jours de mer. Les deux futurs vainqueurs avaient rencontré des conditions similaires à cette année : mer et vent forts.

Virbac Paprec 3 passes Cape Horn (in French and English):

L'histoire se répète...
En 2011, JP et Loïck devraient ! atteindre demain midi le cap mythique en leader. Ils nous font partage r l'approche en photo et vidéo.

Video-conference with Barcelona World Race media (Andi Robertson), in English, immediately afterwards:

Classement à 15h :

1.Virbac-Paprec 3 à 7274,4 milles de l'arrivée
2.Mapfre à 80,6 milles du leader
3.Renault à 1374 milles du leader

Virbac Paprec 3
Barcelona World Race

BWR: Here Today, Horn Tomorrow!

Loick Peyron and Jean-Pierre Dick at dawn on board Virbac Paprec 3. Image copyright Virbac Paprec 3.

- Cape Horn Thursday for Virbac-Paprec 3 and MAPFRE
- Mopping up on We Are Water
- Central Lechera Asturiana due to arrive Wellington Thursday night FMC ready to leave Wellington Thursday morning

by Barcelona World Race media

Cape Horn is the round the world racer’s ultimate milestone. It is the time that the bow is finally directed in a northerly direction, what feels like homewards. In theory the wind ravaged Cape puts behind them the wild challenges of the southern oceans and starts the final long 10000 miles ascent of the Atlantic.

In fact for the leading Barcelona World Race pair, Virbac-Paprec 3 and MAPFRE, there is likely to be little change in the intensity of their individual attack. The wind conditions may progressively ease, but both teams know that every mile gained and lost is a valuable one.

The challenges of the southern Atlantic are often every bit as difficult as they were for the fleet on the descent more than six weeks ago. For example the 2004-5 and the 2000-1 solo round the world Vendée Globe races both saw huge miles caught up in the lower reaches of the Atlantic as the Saint Helena high proved especially slow for the leaders.

Both leading duos will be well aware of this as their next set of strategic challenges on their horizon, but tomorrow, Thursday, will be about the excitement of passing the iconic landmark and making sure they remain in the best possible shape for the big push up the Atlantic.

Virbac-Paprec 3 and MAPFRE at the Horn

For the leading duo, Jean-Pierre Dick and Loïck Peyron, it will be their respective third racing passages of Cape Horn, J-P passing in his first Vendée Globe in 2005 and subsequently en route to winning the first Barcelona World Race, whilst Peyron passed whilst en route to second in the first ever edition of the Vendée Globe. For the MAPFRE duo it will be Iker Martinez’s second but Xabi Fernandez’s third – having rounded twice in successive Volvo Ocean races.

After repositioning themselves slightly to the north early last night, the Spanish pair have so far been able to deliver some of the compression that Martinez spoke of yesterday, making nearly one knot quicker than Virbac-Paprec 3 over the course of the middle part of today. Both have been spearing east towards the Horn at between 18 and 21 knots with the full expectation of a passage of the promontory in breezes which will vary between just plain windy and very windy. They are still expecting the race’s final encounter with ex cyclone Atu, with MAPFRE expecting worse conditions, due to arrive at the Cape some five hours later. This afternoon there was 80 miles between them with Virbac-Paprec 3 due to pass between 0930hrs and 1030hrs UTC.

We Are Water: Mopping Up

Jaume Mumbrú sounded still slightly dazed but very resolute today nearly 24hours after being knocked down on their We Are Water. When he spoke clearly and lucidly of their incident, which he described as ‘for sure the hottest thing that has happened to us so for this race’ he revealed that their mopping up operation is still continuing progressively, they still have a lot of work to get through but ‘are back in the match’.

They were knocked flat by a powerful 1-2 combination of waves, taking ‘tonnes of water’ down the companionway.

We Are Water. Image copyright We Are Water.

Mumbrú recalled: “We were sailing in the bad part of the storm downwind, at an angle 135 degrees. We had only the main with three reefs with no sail at the front at all in 45 touching 50 knots, and the sea was very, very big, high waves with not a lot of distance between the waves. And on one of the accelerations of the boat we just crashed against the wave in front and the wave behind just lifted the boat and capsized us. We were completely over to one side, the water came into the boat and we had tonnes of water inside. We had a few seconds capsized, the boat came upright and from there on, it was just a case of getting the boat ready to get on with it and sail again.

It was the first really, really hot situation that we have been in like that.

Basically we had the boat stopped completely we had all this water inside, electronics were on and it was situation where we had to start making decisions how to put things back together. The wind was blowing at an incredible speed, outside we could not even move. Sometimes it was dangerous, it was the toughest situation since we left.”

He and co-skipper Cali Sanmarti are fighting to have their IMOCA Open 60 back in shape so that they can avoid making a technical pit-stop in Wellington. Forum Maritim Catala restart tomorrow after their 48 hours stop to fix their watermakers and hydrogenerators:

Gerard Marín said today: “From the psychological point of view, being on the water for so long is getting difficult, more so than I thought it would be.”

And heading for Wellington, with just over 100 miles to sail, is the jury rigged Central Lechera Asturiana which lost the top section of their mast yesterday evening.

Rankings at 1400hrs Wednesday 2nd March 2011

1. VIRBAC-PAPREC 3 (Jean-Pierre Dick - Loïck Peyron), at 7.274 miles to finish
2. MAPFRE (Iker Martínez - Xabi Fernández), at 80,6 miles from the leader
3. RENAULT Z. E. (Pachi Rivero - Antonio Piris), at 1.374 miles
4. NEUTROGENA (Boris Herrmann - Ryan Breymaier), at 1.415 miles
5. MIRABAUD (Dominique Wavre - Michèle Paret), at 1.609 miles
6. GROUPE BEL (Kito de Pavant - Sébastien Audigane), at 1.901 miles
7. ESTRELLA DAMM (Alex Pella - Pepe Ribes), at 1.967 miles
8. HUGO BOSS (Wouter Verbraak - Andy Meiklejohn), at 2.340 miles
9. GAES CENTROS AUDITIVOS (Dee Caffari - Anna Corbella), at 2.543 miles
10. FÒRUM MARÍTIM CATALÀ (Gerard Marín - Ludovic Aglaor), at 4.276 miles
11. CENTRAL LECHERA ASTURIANA (Juan Merediz - Fran Palacio), at 4.408 miles
12. WE ARE WATER (Jaume Mumbrú - Cali Sanmartí), at 4.965 miles


Pachi Rivero (ESP) Renault ZE Sailing Team
:"Right now we're fine physically. We sleep, we keep the rhythm fine, within the usual realms of being tired and so on, but physically we are fine although we haven’t seen the sun for a long time.

"We gybed with the wind shift because we wanted to leave the center of the maximum pressure in the low. We have about 35 - 40 knots of wind from behind we are going downwind well, with a sea not too big but safe, most importantly, safe.

"We want to sail with Neutrogena on the same conditions, we seem very even. We hope to get out of this system better than them.

"At the moment Cape Horn is a bit far away, we have another very critical low and then we'll talk about Cape Horn and to get home. It's a little fruity this low, it has to go and set up right in front of us! ... will have to duel with it a bit or stop a bit to let it pass, cross through the middle, further north ... I do not know, but it's a pain in the ass!

"To me, Cape Horn is the father of all Capes, leaving the South. It is important to leave the South well, powerful and strong to face the way home.

"We feel really sorry about the incident Central Lechera Asturiana’s mast. They don’t deserve it, none of them. They made a huge effort and came very well from Cape Town. We are good friends with Juan and Fran and I'm sorry for them.

"The rudders are responding well, we're delighted. The one that was more delicate is doing a good job, is holding up and I think we won’t have any problems with them.

"The two pilots are going very well, both the mechanical and the hydraulic. Now we are sailing with the mechanic one with 35-40 knots. The hydraulic is fine too.

"Calm, wind, calm, wind ... is being quite rough the Pacific.

"It is too early to talk of a third place, What we have to do is sail, do well and we'll think about it past Horn. Then we will have the storms of the north. Until you don’t get home is not quiet. "

Boris Herrmann (GER) Neutrogena:“It is very rough, we have a big swell from the side. It is very dark and so I cant see what is going on so I try hard to find a good course to not launch off the waves because sometimes we hit 27 knots or something like that and between the waves the boat slows down and so it is not so easy to keep an even speed.

We decided to not be too extreme, not to take any risks, and we also gybed a bit later here so that we would have a little bit of distance to this low in the south, and we sail an angle not exactly on the rhumb line, a little to the north to not go in the very strong breeze, we have decent conditions, 42 knots right now.

It is not that far from Cape Horn now and so there is no reason to push the hell out of the boat right now.

Our energy is OK at the moment. It would be good if we could see some sun at one point, but I guess after the Horn in a few days there might be a chance, but it all grey and drizzle, I cant remember where we saw the sun the last time really, before New Zealand.

I am a bit tired of this grey horizon.

We have a big low pressure system passing to the south of us and we have to have a good look at that, I think that could bring another day or day and a half of good breeze, nothing very threatening.

We had a couple of mails of encouragement from Bilou two or three days ago.”

Jaume Mumbru (ESP) We Are Water
:“We were sailing in the bad part of the storm downwind, at an angle 135 degrees. We had only the main with three reefs with no sail at the front at all in 45 touching 50 knots, and the sea was very, very big, high waves with not a lot of distance between the waves. And on one of the accelerations of the boat we just crashed against the wave in front and the wave behind just lifted the boat and capsized us. We were completely over to one side, the water came into the boat and we had tonnes of water inside. We had a few seconds capsized, the boat came upright and from there on, it was just a case of getting the boat ready to get on with it and sail again.

It was the first really, really hot situation that we have been in like that.

Basically we had the boat stopped completely we had all this water inside, electronics were on and it was situation where we had to start making decisions how to put things back together. The wind was blowing at an incredible speed, outside we could not even move. Sometimes it was dangerous, it was the toughest situation since we left.

We are both very tired. We have been working hard for the last 24 hours. We have managed to get the boat back sailing, and the minimum electronics to work, and then we had to gybe to get north, to try and get some north on this second front. After these 24 hours we are happy with the evolution, and we are tired, we try to recover, but we still have some tough conditions to go, but we hope to continue through the Cook Strait so we can have some rest, so our priority right now is to get some rest.
At the moment we are holding on to optimism, our hope not to stop, that is our objective. But that will depend on the evolution of the boat. We feel we are getting pretty lucky because we are managing to dry some of the stuff. Before it was the head of the engine, so we are keeping optimistic not to have to stop in Wellington.”

In French:

Enorme..."Hornesque" !

- Virbac-Paprec 3 à 385 milles du cap Horn
- ETA Virbac-Paprec 3 et MAPFRE : demain 11h (HF) et 15h
- Une succession de dépressions malmène l’ensemble de la flotte
- Un Pacifique d’écart entre Virbac-Paprec 3 et We are Water

We Are Water. Image copyright We Are Water.

Le Pacifique Sud a déterré sa hache de guerre. Aux quatre coins de la flotte de la Barcelona World Race, les équipages essuient, ou sont sur le point d’affronter, des conditions très musclées générées au passage d’un train dépressionnaire. Pour les duos de leaders, les derniers milles vers le rocher mythique s’annoncent de haute volée dans des vents et sur une mer qui font la légende de cette sentinelle aussi prestigieuse que redoutée. De quoi augurer un 62e jour de course riche en émotions fortes avec le « Horn » annoncé de Jean-Pierre Dick et Loïck Peyron, suivis de près par les pirates espagnols, Iker Martinez et Xabi Fernandez...

Bienvenue au pays de la compétition dans des conditions extrêmes. En ce début de mois de mars, tous les équipages sont logés à la même enseigne : celle du Grand Sud qui montre ses dents et sort ses vents violents.

De l’entrée à la sortie du Pacifique Sud

Même la mer de Tasmanie, dans les quartiers occidentaux du Pacifique, se montre d’une redoutable et tempétueuse humeur. Les derniers équipages ne sont pas épargnés au large de la Nouvelle-Zélande. Central Lechera Asturiana a démâté hier en début de soirée sur une mer très croisée, levée par un violent et mauvais coup de vent. Quelques heures plus tôt, We Are Water, la lanterne rouge de la flotte, subissait les foudres d’une vague énorme. Ces deux équipages espagnols font néanmoins contre mauvaise fortune grand cœur. D’un bord à l’autre, ils manifestent l’intention de continuer vaille que vaille ce marathon planétaire, qui n’a plus à faire la preuve de son niveau d’exigence. Au dernier classement, We Are Water, 12e et dernier concurrent pointe au large du cap Farewell en approche du détroit de Cook. Près de 5 000 milles plus loin (9 260 km), Virbac-Paprec 3 cavale à 18 -19 nœuds vers la sortie du désert liquide. Un océan, le plus vaste, les sépare. D’un côté comme de l’autre, il montre son plus hostile visage.

Un mouchoir de 40 milles dans 30-35 nœuds établis

Les récits du jour ne trompent personne. La voix fatiguée, les navigateurs témoignent des conditions éprouvantes, qui les obligent à faire profil bas pour ne pas risquer le diable d’une avarie sur la route du Horn. A bord de Neutrogena, Boris Hermann et Ryan Breymaier confient redoubler de vigilance, réduire la toile de leur monture qui s’emballe dans des surfs à plus de 30 nœuds. Même son de cloche à bord de Renault ZE, où Pachi Rivero et Tonio Piris expliquent, dans la pénombre de leur cabine de carbone, doser entre vitesse et sécurité pour défendre leur place dans ces conditions hostiles. 40 milles séparent les voiles de ces deux 60 pieds dans lesquelles souffle, cet après-midi, un flux de sud-ouest de 30-35 nœuds établis.

La course contre « Atu »

Pour les leaders, le rythme s’accélère encore avec la perspective de bientôt laisser bientôt ce Pacifique Sud dans les tableaux arrières. S’ils progressent cet après-midi dans 20-25 nœuds de nord-ouest, les prochaines heures s’annoncent sous très haute tension pour les deux équipages de tête. La faute à « Atu ». Le plus fidèle des systèmes dépressionnaires de la course ne cesse en effet d’imprimer sa marque sur les eaux qui mènent au Horn. Cette tempête se déplace très vite d’ouest en est : des quartiers où progresse aujourd’hui le milieu de flotte, vers le sud de la Terre de Feu où elle est attendue demain soir. Pour Virbac-Paprec 3 et MAPFRE, il s’agit donc de cravacher pour éviter le pire et se positionner en avant sur la bordure supérieure de ce vaste système. Quoi qu’il en soit, « Atu » annonce la couleur. Ce sera typique et local. 50 nœuds de nord, des vagues énormes : le garde-frontière à l’entrée de l’Atlantique ne fera certainement pas mentir sa réputation avec les passages de Virbac-Paprec 3 et MAPFRE annoncés dans des conditions... « hornesques ».

Sailing Estrella Damm. Image copyright Estrella Damm.

Classement du 2 mars à 15 heures (TU+1)

1 VIRBAC-PAPREC 3 à 7274,4 milles de l’arrivée
2 MAPFRE à 80,6 milles du leader
3 RENAULT ZE à 1374 milles
4 NEUTROGENA à 1415,4 milles
5 MIRABAUD à 1609,1 milles
6 GROUPE BEL à 1901,6 milles
7 ESTELLA DAMM à 1967,5 milles
8 HUGO BOSS à 2340,8 milles
9 GAES CENTROS AUDITIVOS à 2543,9 milles
10 FORUM MARITIM CATALA à 4276 milles
12 WE ARE WATER à 4965 milles

Ils ont dit

Boris Hermann, Neutrogena
:« On a la philosophie de préserver un peu le bateau. On a du vent de 30-40 nœuds et on se dit que c’est peut-être la dernière fois que l’on a autant de vent donc ça serait un peu bête de prendre le risque de casser quelque chose maintenant, à la fin du Sud. Nous avons une mer croisée, une houle de travers et ce n’est pas facile de faire avancer le bateau dans des conditions comme ça : c’est un peu brutal ! Nous avons fait d’énormes surfs parfois sur les vagues : plus de 30 nœuds ! »

Sébastien Audigane, Groupe Bel :« Nous avons un bon flux de portant 25-27 nœuds, ça avance bien sur Groupe Bel.Là, nous avons 25 nœuds de vent et la mer s’est arrangée. Il commence à faire froid, on met les capuches ! On est bien content d’être au portant, car ça faisait un petit moment qu’on attendait ça et Groupe Bel accélère bien depuis 24h, ça fait bien plaisir d’aller vite ! Nous avons plus d’avance sur Estrella Damm depuis quelques jours, effectivement, on espère creuser sur eux et revenir sur le peloton devant nous : avec Dominique Wavre notamment puis Neutrogena et Renault ZE qui sont un peu plus loin. »

Pachi Rivero (ESP), Renault ZE :« Pour moi, le Horn c’est Le Cap, le père de tous les caps, la sortie du Sud. C’est important de bien sortir du Sud, frais et dispo pour remonter à la maison. Nous nous sentons impliqués dans le démâtage de Central Lechera Astutiana. Personne ne mérite cela, surtout pas eux après tous leurs efforts, car ils sont revenus de loin après leur arrêt au Cap. Nous sommes très proches de Juan et Fran et nous avons beaucoup de peine pour eux. »

Jaume Mumbru (ESP), We Are Water
:« L’incident s’est produit en quelques secondes. Le bateau est littéralement tombé dans un trou. Nous marchions à 18 nœuds et en un instant nous nous sommes retrouvés à 0 nœud et le bateau est parti au lof. La faible distance entre deux vagues et leur hauteur nous ont surpris. Le bateau accélérait beaucoup. L’eau est rentrée dans le cockpit. Sous sa pression, la bâche qui protège l’intérieur a cédé, et l’eau a inondé le carré et l’électronique. Nous nous sommes mis à la cape, comme l’avait fait Bernard Stamm lors de la Velux, avec trois ris dans la grand-voile et sans voile à l’avant. Nous avons pu ainsi stopper le bateau et vider l’intérieur puis sauver l’électronique. »

Barcelona World Race

California Dreamin' Series moves to Long Beach

Close racing at the Congressional Cup 2009 Day 3. Image copyright Rich Roberts.

by Rich Roberts

San Francisco is in the books, and now the California Dreamin' Series for raw but talented match racing sailors comes to Long Beach for the Butler Cup Saturday and Sunday.

In the absence of Shawn Bennett, who won last weekend's series opener on the Bay, the two favorites in the event apparently will be Will Tiller, 21, a successful upstart from New Zealand, and Russ Silvestri, 49, who raced a Finn dinghy for the U.S. in the 2000 Olympics in Australia and at San Francisco finished second behind Bennett, who is skipping this event.

All will be increasing the crews of three or four they used on the J/22s last week to six or seven on the C/37s. Some of the younger skippers with limited experience behind a wheel have found the sturdy C/37s to be a handful.

No problem, says at least one. Asked if a guy named Tiller would have trouble driving with a wheel, he laughed and said, "I have sailed quite a few boats with wheels so I have the hang of it. Our team is competing in the Butler Cup with the aim of developing our team in these larger boats going into future regattas."
He has been match-racing at all levels for four years and been competitive in Grade 1 events against the likes of Congressional Cup winners Francesco Bruni and Rod Davis.

Later this month the winner could find himself facing Bruni and other top professionals in the 47th Congressional Cup at Long Beach March 22-26, but they'll be sailing the same Catalina 37s on the same tight windward-leeward course within spitting range of the spectator friendly Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier. Racing will start at around noon each day, conditions permitting.

First place this weekend earns advancement into the Grade 2 Ficker Cup at Long Beach March 17-19. Others may take a detour to San Diego for the last stop of the Grade 3 CDS March 12-13 that also will earn a Ficker slot for the overall winner of the series.

The Ficker will determine that contest's traditional entry into the Congressional Cup against the world's top pros March 22-26.

Six of the eight San Francisco competitors will be racing in Long Beach: Silvestri and John Horsch, 5-2 last weekend; Dustin Durant, Long Beach, 4-3; Bruce Stone, San Francisco, 3-4; Dave Storrs, Pequot Yacht Club of Southport, Conn., and Saverio Ramirez, Italy, 2-5.

Butler Cup

YNZ announces team for 2011 Olympic Test Event

Peter Burling (left) and Blair Tuke - 49er. Image copyright YNZ.

by Jodie Bakewell-White

Yachting New Zealand’s appointed selectors have met to decide the New Zealand Team of sailors to compete at the Olympic Test Event Regatta in Weymouth from 1st – 14th August 2011.

Representatives have been announced in seven of the ten Olympic classes with announcements in the remaining three classes to be made following June’s Sail for Gold Regatta, also on in Weymouth.

Dan Slater - Finn. Image copyright YNZ.

They have selected the following sailors in their respective classes...

Laser: Andrew Murdoch
Laser Radial: Sara Winther
Women’s 470: Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie
Men’s 470: Paul Snow-Hansen and Jason Saunders
Star: Hamish Pepper and Craig Monk
Finn: Dan Slater
49er: Peter Burling and Blair Tuke

Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie - 470 Women. Image copyright YNZ.

Announcements regarding selection in the Women’s Match Racing, Men’s RS:X and Women’s RS:X events will be made after the 2011 Sail for Gold Regatta which runs from 6th – 11th June 2011.

The YNZ Selectors will continue to monitor sailor performance in the on-going process towards selecting the 2012 Olympic Sailing Team. Places for next year are undecided with the earliest possible selections being made after the 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championship with others decided in the months leading up to the Games.

Sara Winther - Laser Radial. Image copyright YNZ.

The Olympic Test Event, otherwise known as the ‘Pre-Olympics’ is staged at the same time and venue as next year’s ‘real deal’ Olympic Games Regatta giving organisers and national teams an opportunity to fine-tune their preparations.

Other major Olympic class regattas including the ISAF Sailing World Cup Series events and the 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships on in Perth late this year all allow for multiple entries from one country in each event. In contrast the Olympic Test Event – like the Olympic Games – allows only one entry per country in each of the ten events.

Andrew Murdoch - Laser. Image copyright YNZ.

“The Olympic Test Event is our chance for a full ‘dress rehearsal’ before next year’s Olympics,” explains YNZ Olympic Programme Manager Jez Fanstone. “Our aim is to be the best prepared we can be come August 2012, and this event is an important part of that process.”

“It’s about knowledge gathering, the opportunity to work together as a team and to fine-tune things as we work towards Weymouth 2012. We’ll be testing our people and plans both on the water and off the water.”

Paul Snow-Hansen and Jason Saunders - 470 Men. Image copyright YNZ.

Between now and August these sailors and other members of the NZL Sailing Team will be competing at various ISAF Sailing World Cup Series Regattas including Princess Sofia Regatta in Palma (2-9 April), French Olympic Sailing Week in Hyeres (22-29 April), Delta Lloyd Regatta in Medemblik (24-29 May), Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta in Weymouth (5-11 June) and Kiel Week in Germany (18-22 June).

Another major mark on the 2011 calendar for our Olympic campaigners is the ISAF Sailing World Championships on from 3 – 18 December in Perth bringing together all ten Olympic Class World Championship events (each staged separately in other years) in what will potentially be the largest gathering of Olympic class sailors ever. The December event is significant on the road to the Olympic Games as 75% of national qualification is allocated on performance at this regatta.

Yachting New Zealand