Thursday, May 29, 2008

Artemis Race Video Highlights

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

RC 44 Austria Cup - Training

Photographer: Gilles Martin-Raget /BMW Oracle

Photographer: Gilles Martin-Raget /BMW Oracle

Photographer: Gilles Martin-Raget /BMW Oracle

Photographer: Gilles Martin-Raget /BMW Oracle

Photographer: Gilles Martin-Raget/BMW Oracle

Photographer: Gilles Martin-Raget /BMW Oracle
The RC 44 Austria Cup will take place on the beautiful lake Traun, between May 28 – June 1. Following two events held on the sea, with waves and fairly strong winds, this regatta may well reshuffle the cards. Once again, the line up is exceptional with Class leaders Armando Giulietti and his pro skipper Sébastien Col sailing against Larry Ellison, John Kostecki, James Spithill, Cameron Appleton, Mateusz Kusznierewicz, Russell Coutts and many more. -

Team Oman joins iShares Cup

Mark Lloyd/Sail Oman
[Source iShares] This brand new Extreme 40 team is backed by the Sultanate of Oman as part of a larger project to promote the country as a world-class sailing destination. The crew will begin the series made up of international pro sailors, but with an increasing presence of Omani nationals as the campaign progresses.
The Oman Sail Team should get off to a flying start in the 2008 iShares Cup, with a talented crew of professional British sailors opening the series. The Extreme 40 will be skippered by Pete Cumming, who relished the chance to take over the reins of fellow iShares Cup entry Holmatro for a couple of races at the recent training regatta in Valencia. Pete and his crew jumped into the catamaran and made a great early impression, getting the best start of the fleet in their first ever Extreme 40 race. -

Team Russia’s new Volvo 70 launched...

Photo credit: Tim Stonton/Volvo Ocean Race/Onedition
Team Russia's new Volvo Open 70 yacht made a spectacular entrance into the world today. Its 23 metre long racing hull appeared in public for the first time hovering high over the boat sheds of builderís Green Marine Lymington(UK), before being lowered by a massive 200 Tonne crane into the Lymington River. Designer Rob Humphreys has incorporated innovative features into his first Volvo Open 70 design, most notably, the double spray rails at the front, the bluff bow and powerful stern design.
For more about Team Russia visit
For more information about the Volvo Ocean Race visit

first Briton to finish...

Matt Dickens/onEdition/The Artemis Transat
Thirty-three year old Samantha Davies has become the first Briton to finish The Artemis Transat 2008 solo race in Boston, USA. Samantha sailed her 60-foot monohull Roxy across the finish line at 23:00:51 GMT (19:00 local time) yesterday (26 May) in a time 15 days, 10 hours, 00 minutes and 51 seconds. For the last 24 hours, Sam battled a biting and gusty 25 to 35 knot headwind, but crossed the line with a huge smile.

Monday, May 26, 2008

BMW Oracle New TP52

Click on images to enlarge. Credit : "Photo Gilles Martin-Raget / BMW ORACLE Racing

Credit : "Photo Gilles Martin-Raget / BMW ORACLE Racing

Credit : "Photo Gilles Martin-Raget / BMW ORACLE Racing

Credit : "Photo Gilles Martin-Raget / BMW ORACLE Racing

Credit : "Photo Gilles Martin-Raget / BMW ORACLE Racing

Credit : "Photo Gilles Martin-Raget / BMW ORACLE Racing

Credit : "Photo Gilles Martin-Raget / BMW ORACLE Racing
TP52 – Team pleased with USA 17’s early performance.
After the initial shakedown of the new TP 52 on Thursday in Valencia, the BMW ORACLE Racing sailing team put the brand new race boat through the paces on Friday and Saturday with stablemate Artemis.
With James Spithill driving USA 17 and John Kostecki at the helm of Artemis on Friday, the two Reichel/Pugh designed boats had their first line-up in 18 knots of breeze.

“The boat looks promising,” said USA 17’s sailing team project manager Michele Ivaldi (ITA). “We were competitive against Artemis in 18 knots with waves so we are pleased with USA 17’s early performance.” -

Playing with the boys...

Sam onboard Roxy© Sam Davies / Roxy
[Source OC Events] This now leaves six IMOCA 60s, out of the 13 starters, to finish this gruelling solo transatlantic race, and leading this second pack is Samantha Davies on board Roxy. Samantha Davies represents Britain's first finisher in the race and is expected to arrive at midnight tonight. She will finish ahead of her fellow Briton and rival Dee Caffari on Aviva, who still has around 330 miles to the finish and expected to arrive at 1400 GMT tomorrow (Tuesday, 27th May). Davies has also managed to extend her lead over her closest rivals - Yannick Bestaven (Cervin ENR) and Arnaud Boissieres - by 70 miles: "The blond in front has given us the elbow," wrote Boissieres.

Sailing an older generation boat than the first four finishers in Boston, Sam understandably sounded in good form: "Feeling comfortable and nice to be in wind and on direct line to Boston - its quite relaxed. More importantly, is to get there in one piece without a whale or a fishing bouy wrapped around my keel and there seems to be a minefield of lobster pots and whales out here this morning!

"I'm hoping I'm going to arrive in daylight hours - around 2200 gmt [1800 local time] so hoping I'm going to be able to see because, for sure, at night it's harder. I guess the hardest thing is we're going to get about 30 knots of wind in the channel approaching Boston and it is directly upwind so we're going to have to tack all the way up the channel - that's going to be pretty hard physically, just taking the boat maybe several times."

Speaking of the fifth-place battle that has ensued these past few days, Sam said of her rivals: "They are great friends and also desperate to beat each other! They will be pushing all the way and perhaps taking some risks right up to the end." It's worth noting that the two old friends had finished first (Bestaven) and third (Boissieres) in the 2001 Mini Transat, after having carried out a shared campaign, notably building 2 new prototypes together.

Dee Caffari onboard Aviva, racing in her first solo race onboard her new 60-foot IMOCA boat, has around 300 miles to go and is finding the final phase of the race a frustration : "A great day sailing once the sun rose and revealed clear skies and breeze for Aviva. Then as if by the clock the breeze shut down and left me floating absolutely dead in the water. The only difference was this time is that it was under clear blue skies with a sun in it rather than fog. That was a relief as the air is so cold it was the warmest I had been for days. So yet again my plan to arrive in Boston is delayed once again." For Dee, getting to Boston may seem like an eternity, but the gain will be worth the pain for the girl who, like Samantha Davies, wants to race in the solo non-stop round the world Vendée Globe race this winter. It is critical for Dee to finish The Artemis Transat to put her Vendée Globe qualifier behind her.


Loick Peyron (Gitana Eighty) wins the Artemis Transat, stepping into the history books as the only person to have ever won the transatlantic race on three occasions. Peyron 49, from Le Pouliguen, Brittany, France also set a new race record. For full information on the Race and programme of events, please visit the website
Photos by onedition

Friday, May 23, 2008

Day 12 -Transat

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Rolex Capri Sailing Week

ALFA ROMEO leading with two bullets in the Maxi group. Full Report

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Vincent Riou abandons ship

Safe and sound aboard Gitana Eighty, Vincent Riou gave us an account of the events which led to his presence aboard Loick Peyron's boat... now in the lead.

Vincent Riou's account of the eventsJoined this evening at 19h05 BST (18h05 GMT) by satellite phone, Vincent Riou onboard Gitana Eighty - following his rescue by Loick Peyron - came back on the events which led to his retirement."Last night at around 3:00 GMT, reaching rather fast, between 15 and 18 knots, I felt a shock which didn't worry me too much since it was violent but 'soft' - I didn't hear any carbon crack. I'm sure it was a shark, and actually I think I cut it in two since I saw two portions emerge at the back of the boat. I assessed the possible damage, and only saw a minor problem on the fairing of the keel box, nothing serious but anyway I slowed down a bit.

I took advantage of the ridge we crossed today to stop and get a better look, and that's when I discovered one of the keel pins was missing. The keel was being held in place because it was canted and somehow stuck, but I didn't really want to face the gale expected for tomorrow on a boat whose keel could fall off at any time. I decided to contact Race Direction, and they called Loick to ask him to head towards my position (Ed note - Vincent asked for assistance at 15:00 GMT).

Gitana Eighty was only 15 miles from me, I prepared the boat before leaving it. I filled the ballast tanks*, stacked the sails down below to lower the centre of gravity, activated the beacons and got ready. I took that decision quickly, knowing that the weather allowed for a safe operation. I inflated the raft, secured it to PRB and boarded it, then Loick made an approach and I climbed aboard Gitana Eighty. I don't really know what to say, it's like my arms just fell off (...) Now all I can do is make some phone calls to organise the salvage of the boat, which should be done in 2 or 3 days." -

Rolex Capri Sailing Week

Photo by: Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi
[Regatta News] 2008 marks the fourth edition of Rolex Capri Sailing Week and thirty-nine yachts have gathered in the Marina Grande for this year's competition. Racing is spread over four days and will comprise a mixture of windward/leeward and coastal courses. The fleet represented is drawn from eleven nations and is divided into three main classes: Swan 45s (19 entries), Maxis (including the Swan Maxi Class) (8 entries) and the Comets (12 entries).

The Swan 45 is one of the strongest owner driver classes in yacht racing today and racing should be tight. Defending champion from the 2007 Rolex Capri Sailing Week, Carlo Perrone and Atlantica Racing is under no illusions, “we are happy to be defending our title here in Capri. Last year the competition level was very high and this year it is even higher. The boats are more competitive, all the crew are more professional, so the level is very, very high. It's going to be difficult for us to do as well as last year but we will try our best.” -

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BMW ORACLE Racing competes in Extreme 40s.
[Source BMW ORACLE] Racing skipper Russell Coutts and helmsman James Spithill are going head-to-head this week in Extreme 40 catamarans in a nine-race, in-house battle as part of the team’s race training for the 33rd America’s Cup.

Today was the first day of the three-day series off Valencia’s Malvarossa beach. After some fickle spring weather the past few days in Valencia, the sunny spring day brought a steady 14 knots of afternoon sea breeze and plenty of action. Much of the afternoon, the catamarans were “flying a hull” (one of the two hulls out of the water), reaching speeds of 15 knots upwind and over 20 knots downwind.

In today’s racing, multihull expert-consultant Franck Cammas (FRA) was helming Coutts’ boat with team members Jonathan Macbeth (NZL) grinding and Alberto Barovier (ITA) on the bow. On the Spithill team, John Kostecki (USA) was calling tactics, Dirk de Ridder (NED) was grinding and Alan Smith (NZL) was on the bow. The crews will remain the same but they will swap boats throughout the three days of racing.

“The conditions were just perfect today,” Spithill said. “It doesn’t get any better than this. It was really good fun.” -

Monday, May 19, 2008

North Atlantic Ice!


See entry below for photos and results!

Southwestern Yacht Club Wins Lipton Club

Photos SDYC
Total upset!
[SDYC] San Diego, CA. - Fickle winds, fog, Navy aircraft carriers, kelp, etc. were all reasons to delay racing this weekend. And in spite of all the detractions, the racing conducted was great. Sailing in two different venues as the wind allowed, SDYC’s Race Committee did an excellent job keeping the Lipton Cup competition on track.

Finding their way to the course area through the fog on Saturday, everyone discovered the dark gray shape in the fog was not a low cloud, but the emense aircraft carrier John C. Stennis at anchor in the Coronado Roads because of the fog. And we just thought they were there to watch the racing…

Wind and fog delayed the 1130 start until almost 1300. And between each of the races, there was a delay waiting for wind. If you wonder why Race 4 and 5 are blank, it was due to the specifics of language in the Notice of Race and Sailing Instructions, thus racing on Sunday began with Race 6 through 9.

Sunday began with SDYC’s entry “Wings” skippered by Bill Hardesty ahead by 2 points over Southwestern Yacht Club’s entry J-OK skippered by Ken Manzoni. But Manzoni was quick to rectify that with a bullet in Race 6 to SDYC’s 4th which turned the tables and put SWYC ahead by one. Hardesty caught them looking the wrong way in the prestart of the next race, but Manzoni quickly exonerated himself and went on to take Race 7 with SDYC second. That put SDYC behind by two.

Race 8 featured more match racing between the two as they finally getting down to racing almost a minute behind the other competitors. Hardesty finished second with Manzoni fourth, which evened the score at 12 points apiece and a winner take all race to determine the winner of the Lipton Cup.

More Match racing, more shifts, and with Manzoni firmly under his wing, it looked like Hardesty had it wrapped up. But on the final leg to the finish, it depends on who you talk to as to how it all turned out. Bottom line, it was a photo finish. In fact no one knew who had finished until the RC announced it on the radio a minute later. Southwestern Yacht Club was the Lipton Cup champion for 2008. Congratulations Southwestern! - For Results

Alinghi White

Photo by
Despite threats of thunderstorms, the final day of training in Valencia for the five Extreme 40s went off with a bang as the teams were put through their paces in preparation for the first iShares Cup in Lugano on 30 May.The day began with a Parade of Sail down the canal that links the Darsena to the open water, and then out to sea to move straight into the first of five start sequences planned for the afternoon.

Four winward/leeward courses were set in addition to a triangular course to take the boats close in to shore.Initial winds of 5 knots steadily increased throughout the day into perfect hull flying conditions for the final two races giving the spectators on the beach an impressive display. The racing was tight, particularly around the winward marks, with the boats jostling for space, resulting in a few missed mark roundings, close shaves and penalty turns. Full report...

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Day 8: Race Update Video - BT out of the race

Last day TP52... Paul Cayard

Photo By: Th Martinez / AUDI MED CUP
After one final nervous race Peter de Ridder and the crew of Mean Machine emerged as winners of the City of Alicante Trophy, and leave the first regatta of the six event 2008 Audi MedCup Circuit with a lead of just one point.

[Report from Paul Cayard] The wind gods only graced us with enough wind to get one race in today. Bribon, with the King of Spain onboard, got to the left on the first windward leg and the wind in Spain went left and they were launched.

The wind speed was about 10 knots for the 1.25 hour affair and not much changed after the first windward mark. We managed a 6th which was decent and put us in a tie for 7th with Mutua Madrilena. Mean Machine finished 8th and that was good enough to win the regatta by one point over Bribon.

I think the fleet has had its fill of wind under 10 knots and is looking forward to the next Audi Med Cup event in Marseille in early June.

I will miss Marseille to attend my daughter's graduation from high school, but will be back on the circuit for the third event in Cagliari, Italy in early July.
For complete results go to

Friday, May 16, 2008

Mean Machine on top

A fifth win in a row for Peter de Ridder and his team on Mean Machine extended the lead of the 2006 MedCup champions to six points as the City of Alicante Trophy regatta, the first of the 2008 Audi MedCup circuit moves into its final day.

After winning yesterday’s 30 miles coastal race by a comfortable margin there was a sense of déjà vu this afternoon as Dutch owner De Ridder and his crew established their early lead off the start line and lead at each mark.

Their nearest opposition was the current MedCup champion Torbjorn Tornqvist (SWE) with his new Artemis, but it was on the final windward leg that Mean Machine’s tactical brains, Ray Davies (NZL) and Tom Dodson (NZL) called the shifting breeze right and crossed the finish line of what proved to be a well timed shortened course. Mean Machine left Artemis trailing nearly one minute behind, but the Swedish skipper and crew, lead by John Kostecki (USA) as tactician, are now finding their stride with the new Artemis as they learn the optimum rig and sail settings. Three consecutive second places ensure Artemis have climbed to fifth overall.

Race 7 of the regatta enjoyed a brisk 14-16 knots of southerly breeze. Mean Machine’s strategy was designed as much to ensure a period of clear wind immediately after the start gun as it was in dragging to the favored side of the course. Platoon powered by Team Germany, with triple Olympic gold medallist Jochen Schuemann steering, went to the opposite flank and rounded fourth 33 seconds behind the leaders..

Their fifth victory in a row for the team which won the MedCup in 2006, surpasses their string of four wins in Punta Ala in 2006, on the previous Mean Machine’s debut regatta. Increasingly De Ridder and team - a potent mix of down to earth Kiwis, American, Dutch and British sailors - look like they could repeat that maiden regatta victory. Full Report

Thursday, May 15, 2008


Medcup Video of Day 2

Audi Med Cup - Alicante - Race Day 2

© Th Martinez/AUDI MEDCUP
[By Paul Cayard] - A big day of racing today with Races 3, 4 and 5 held in 10, 12 and 14 knots of wind, respectively. Course number one (windward, leeward, windward, finish) was used for all three races. Mean Machine had the best day with a fifth and two firsts, while Bribon is in first place with just 15 points.

Onboard Desafio Español we had an up and down day but we are definitely winning the prize for the most boats passed. We shot ourselves in the foot at the start of Race 3 by going over the line early without any real pressure from the boats around us. So, after restarting we passed nine boats and finished 7th. In the second race of the day, we had a good start but went left and that was not the place to be.

We stumbled hard at the leeward gate, getting really slow there and just did not sail very well, so we finished 11th. Just prior to the start of Race 5, we had a string on the tiller break that caused me to lose control of the boat and we went beyond head to wind and fouled Tau. So right after crossing the line, we had to do a 360 degree penalty. Needless to say, we were well in last place. But the boat was fast up and downwind in the 14 knots and we managed to pass 11 boats to finish 5th!

So, the summary for us after the first two days is - the boat is fast and we have just got to stop getting in its way. I am very happy the way we have tuned this boat up, working very diligently on the rig tune, which is the critical element to getting these boats to sail fast through the wind range. Our North Sails by Sandro Benini are good too.

Tomorrow is the coastal race. There will be a scoring gate half way through the race which should be about 30 miles in total. Hopefully, we will have the 12-14 knots of wind that we finished up with today.

For complete results go to

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Photo of the day...The ArtemisTransat

Photo by onEdition/The ArtemisTransat/OC Events
Safran heads west to Boston.

Salma Hayek christen's Puma Racing

Sally Collison/PUMA Ocean Racing
Five months before the start of the Volvo Ocean Race 2008-2009, PUMA Ocean Racing had its new racing boat christened "il mostro" by Oscar-nominated actress Salma Hayek in a waterfront ceremony at the Institute of Contemporary Art/ Boston at Fan Pier on Monday, May 12th. The evening included the ceremonial breaking of a bottle of champagne across the Volvo Open 70s bow by Hayek, and few speeches by Chairman and CEO of PUMA, Jochen Zeitz, Chief Marketing Officer Antonio Bertone and PUMA Ocean Racing Skipper Ken Read.