Monday, January 31, 2011

AC45 : testing the limits

Photos: Gilles Martin-Raget
30/01/2011 - Auckland (NZL) - 34th America's Cup - AC45 sea trial n ° 8 - Anniversary day - Round Rangitoto Island.
31.01.11 After participating in the Auckland Anniversary Day regatta, a race that took competitors around Rangitoto Island in the Hauraki Gulf, ORACLE Racing skipper Jimmy Spithill was confident he’d shattered the speed record for the prototype AC45.

Overnight analysis of the GPS logbook shows that confidence was justified. Spithill and crew topped out at 29.9 knots (approximately 34 MPH/55 km/h) in the race with winds blowing between 25 and 30 knots.

Although one-tenth of a knot shy of the 30-knot barrier, the new speed record surpasses the 28-knot mark set by Murray “The Captain” Jones last week.

When they got shoreside, some crewmembers thought that Jones had fiddled with the speedo, hindering its readings particularly off the wind. But there’s no denying the AC45 has speed to burn.

The AC45 surpassed 20 knots during its maiden voyage on Jan. 17. Two days later the crew was sailing comfortably at 25 knots. Then Jones set the 28-knot mark on Jan. 21.

Today’s outing proved that the AC45 is capable of handling extreme conditions.

“We put the bow in a couple of times at 30 knots and loaded everything up,” said Matt Mason. “We were on our toes the whole time and it was great for the boat and the crew to come out of it relatively unscathed.”

View the gallery, ‘Testing the Limits’.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Silver At US Sailing's Rolex Miami OCR

Miami, FL - We finished the US Sailing's Rolex Miami OCR regatta with a silver medal. We lost the women's match racing finals 3-1 to France's Claire Leroy and team, who sailed a very good series. The bronze went to our USSTAG teammates, Sally Barkow and team. We are happy with our overall performance this event. However, we do wish we could have back some moments in the finals.

Intense Concentration Photo: (c) John Payne 2011

The first two races of the series, Claire and team hit the shifts correctly up the first beat and launched into the lead and took the two races handidly. The next two races, however, were a different story; much more intense.

The third race, we were behind off the line and around the first lap but up the second beat, we sailed smart and took the lead and the race.

The fourth race was the most intense race of our whole regatta. There were four or five lead changes throughout the whole race.

Off the line, we were to the right and were ahead, but shortly thereafter, a big left shift came in and put Leroy into the lead by one length. Coming into and at the top mark, Leroy held the advantage, as well on the downwind leg. Up the next leg, Molly and Debbie found all of the correct shifts which then put us one length ahead at the top mark. By now the wind had died to about 6kts so we knew going downwind to the finish was going to be very tough. We took it in turns to roll over the top of each other and each of us took the lead several times. In the end, it came down to who could roll the other team last before the finish. Unfortunately for us, she rolled us just before the finish and we couldn't get it back in time. This gave her the third win of the series and the gold medal for the event.

Like I said, we were disappointed after the racing because we feel as though we gave away a couple of races, but after a debrief and evaluation of the whole regatta, now we are excited to have sailed well all week long and to come away with a silver medal.

Next up for us, we have two weeks off as a team. We are looking forward to our break before we start training again on February 14th.

We would like to thank Carmeuse and Trinity Yachts for their continued support of our women's match racing campaign for the 2012 Olympics in London. We would also like to thank US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics (USSTAG) and its sponsors for their support. Also, thank you to our private donors. Please remember that any and all donations/contributions to our campaign should be made payable directly to The Sailing Foundation of New York (tax deductible) memo'd Anna Tunnicliffe, or to Anna Tunnicliffe.

Sail Hard

Team Tunnicliffe

Friday, January 28, 2011

Getting to the South

It was 5.56 am (Paris time) this morning when the Maxi Trimiran Banque Populaire V crossed the Equator, just 5 days 17 hours 44 minutes and 15 seconds since leaving Ushant. The maxi trimaran skippered by Pascal Bidegorry recorded the second fastest time in history on this section of the record attempt (Ushant to Equator). In doing so they have covered 3575 miles, at an average of 25.9 knots, keeping a slight advantage on the reference time of the Jules Verne. The crew is now recovering after a difficult crossing of the Doldrums and before the next challenging obstacle: The Saint Helena High.

Crossing the Equator
Crossing the equator is a not just a geographic area of note, but it also remains a true religion for sailors and the passage of this imaginary line has been celebrated as it should be on board the Maxi Banque Populaire V. The fourteen men have were glad to ease off the pressure they were under through the Doldrums and enjoy the mixture of superstition and tradition.

Three crewmen (Ronan Lucas, Xavier Revil and Pierre-Yves Moreau), who were crossing it for the first time, qualified as rookies for the traditional ‘crossing the line’ ceremony. For this impromptu party, Yvan (Ravussin) made a mixture of olive oil, tea, Tabasco, soya sauce, lemon, nuts, pepper and coffee! “I asked them to wake me up to celebrate it altogether” explained Xavier. “Yvan’s preparation was really tasty! I am sure he put everything he could find on board! But it was important to share this moment as we had been fighting hard for the past 24 hours to reach the Equator! And the sailing conditions were perfect to do so, at 28 knots under gennaker: rather exceptional apparently.”

It was then Neptune’s turn to be celebrated. For Brian Thompson, who was crossing it for the thirteenth time, this moment was particularly important : “ I made an offering to Neptune of some of France’s finest saucisson, something I would have enjoyed , but better to propitiate the god of the sea, just in case, and to keep the tradition. This is my 13 crossing now, so it has worked so far!”

The Santa Helena dilemma

Getting through the Doldrums was not an easy task for the Maxi Banque Populaire V as the skipper, Pascal Bidegorry, explained: "It's liberating to get out of there! It was pretty tense yesterday as it is not obvious how to sail in under 2 tiny knots of wind! We should gradually reach better conditions and we are now sailing at 27 knots in 15-17 knots of wind with full mainsail and solent. The wind still oscillates a little, but should stabilize in few hours with a clearer sky.” Such conditions give the crew some time to recover a little, before having to tackle another tricky system.

Indeed, the weather situation is not very clear off the Brazilian coast. With the Saint Helena High blocking the shortest route to the Cape of Good Hope, Banque Populaire V might have to get round this high pressure area spread out from East to West. “The situation is not very clear for now but we might have to go around the northern side of it, which would imply taking a big detour to reach Good Hope. We are attentively looking at the satellite images received every hour. One certain thing is that we do not have a crystal ball to look into but we definitely won’t let any opportunity go, and make everything we can to increase our lead on the reference time” concluded Pascal. -

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Preparations underway for Alinghi’s busy 2011 season

The racing season is fast approaching for Alinghi as the Swiss team carries on with its preparations for the double multihull programme planned for 2011.

First to kick off will be the Extreme Sailing Series, with a busy calendar of nine regattas in nine different countries around the world and a very competitive field. Alinghi is returning to this championship, sailing with the X40 catamarans, after their victory in 2008. The Swiss team will be facing respected international teams such as Artemis Racing, Emirates Team New Zealand, Groupe Edmond de Rothschild, Luna Rossa, Oman Air Masirah, Red Bull Extreme Sailing Team, Team Extreme, Team GAC Pindar, Team Niceforyou and The Wave.

The other important competition in Alinghi’s schedule for this year will be the D35 series, which will travel abroad for the first time since its inception in 2004. The lightweight and innovatively designed catamarans will sail two regattas in open seas off the Mediterranean coast of France. A three-time winner of the D35 championship, Alinghi will try to regain the crown in 2011 against its traditional Swiss and French rivals which include many of the best multihull specialists in the world.

In total, Alinghi’s calendar for 2011 includes 15 events in 10 countries throughout 11 months.

Boat set-up and crew preparation for Alinghi began at the start of the year and the team will be ready for their first meeting, the debut round of the Extreme Sailing Series in Oman, on February 20-24.
The Alinghi crew for the 2011 season is made of a blend of Swiss and French sailors, with many of them playing a part inthe team’s adventures since its creation more than ten years ago. This year will see the addition of French X40 expert, Yann Guichard who will be teaming up with Ernesto Bertarelli, Tanguy Cariou, Yves Detrey, Nils Frei, Coraline Jonet and Pierre-Yves Jorand.

Extreme Sailing Series

20-24 Feb Muscat, Oman
13-17 April Qingdao, China
25-29 May Istanbul, Turkey
30 June-4 Jul Boston, USA
6-12 Aug Cowes,UK
14-18 Sept Trapani, Italy
28 Sept-2 Oct Nice, France
12-16 Oct Almeria, Spain
7-11 Dec Singapor


5-8 May GP Corum
21-22 May Realstone Cup
11 June Genève-Rolle-Genève
12-13 June Pro-Am Versoix
18 June Bol d’Or
1-4 Sept Beaulieu sur mer
22-25 Sept Antibes

Alinghi crew

Ernesto Bertarelli
Tanguy Cariou
Yves Detrey
Nils Frei
Yann Guichard
Coraline Jonet
Pierre-Yves Jorand

Wing walking

AC45 action video

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Maxi Banque Populaire V update by the crew

Day 3.75 0600 1545N 2923W - Update from Brian Thompson

15 degrees and 45 minutes North….quick calculation….15 times 60miles is 900 plus 45 makes a total of 945 nautical miles to the equator. That’s the first major milestone after the Ushant start. Looks like we will get there in a similar time to Groupama. We had a great run till yesterday afternoon when the NW wind dropped, and we trickled along waiting for the wind to shift to the typical NE winds of this latitude.

We are now in light tradewinds of around 12- 15 knots, but the wind feels much less powerful in this tropical air. However we should have a good wind angle soon as the wind swings more towards the East. The seas are very flat so only a couple of knots more wind and we will be flying again. The forecasts are not for much more wind than this though, and at this point Groupama was going fast in strong tradewinds.

But we are not perturbed by them catching up as if it was a real race in the same weather conditions - in the big picture we are within our target to the equator, in fact remarkably similar to the timings of the routing simulations we had at the start.

It was a great run till the wind dropped, a point to point 2,100
miles in 3 days, all VMG running with several gybes in there as well.

Incredible going. My best run before that was 697 on Maiden 2, the ex Club Med, which for several years was the record, that was a great trip and a story in itself with a great mixed team including Adrienne Cahalan and Sam Davies, in fact there were more girls than boys on board.

Out here life is good, everyone has change into their tropical wear of shorts and longsleeve shirts, with maybe a jacket at night.

Normally at this point; the first dry day, the boat would be looking a bit like a Caribbean laundry with clothes attached everywhere to catch the sun, but I put away my perfectly dry thermals ready to put on in about a weeks time..3 days of constant spray, 2100 miles and not a drop, thanks Musto!

Incredible stars again and was steering towards one called Canopus tonight…and in case you are wondering how I know…I do have an app for that!

Ok, lets hope the wind exceeds the forecast today…

A demain
Posted by Brian Thompson Sailing

US Sailing's Rolex Miami OCR - Satisfactory Day Despite Wind Shift Delays

January 26, 2011
Miami, FL

It was a long day on the water for only three gold races, but it was a successful day finishing 2-1. The wind swung around as the cold front approached and moved through the Miami area, but the race committee of US Sailing's Rolex Miami OCR did a great job in getting in as many races as they did given the conditions.

Looking For .....? Layline? Competitor?
Photo: (c) Amory Ross / US SAILING 2011

The day started with a light southerly ahead of the front, and then swung to the west as it approached. Group A finished their last race before the big swing and while the race committee waited for the breeze to settle in, a protest hearing was heard to determine who in group A would advance to the repecharge, and who would be in silver. Eventually the results were resolved, the wind settled and racing started again. The repecharge group completed three races and we quickly rotated into the boats to do our three races before sunset.

By 3pm, we were finally racing. Our first race was against France's Claire Leroy. In the pre-start, Leroy got a penalty for gybing too close in front of us. We had an even start at opposite ends of the line, us at the pin and her at the boat. When we came together half way up the leg, she was slightly ahead of us, but we held close and rounded right behind her at the top mark. Downwind, we hung tight and rounded again right behind her at the bottom mark. Upwind was the same story which inevitably, would lead to an exciting downwind leg to the finish, where she would try to draw a penalty back against us. Molly and Debbie did a great job controlling the boat and we waited for the opportune moment to gybe with the spinnaker and dive down to beat her to the finish line.

The second race was against our Finnish friends, Team Lehtiman. We had a similar start with them only this time with no penalties. At the top mark, we were bow to stern. The race was close all around until the last leg where we managed to roll over the top of her with our spinnaker, but didn't have quite enough distance to get around her before reaching the port layline. It was a tough loss because we had managed to take the lead, but we learned a few things from the race.

Our last race was against Ekaterina Skudina and team. At the start she earned a penalty. We rounded the top mark ahead of her and she accidently hit the mark as she rounded earning a second penalty which meant that she had to take one of them immediately. We extended on the leg and held on to the lead to take the win.

Tomorrow, racing begins at 9:30 with the repecharge group wrapping up their two races. Then we race our last two races to finish the seeding for the quarterfinals. The quarterfinal racing starts on Friday morning.

There are live twitter feeds online with updates. You can find results at the regatta website here.
We would like to thank Carmeuse and Trinity Yachts for their continued support of our campaign for the 2012 Olympics in London. We would also like to thank US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics (USSTAG) and its sponsors for their support. Also, thank you to our private donors. Please remember that any and all donations/contributions to our campaign should be made payable directly to The Sailing Foundation of New York (tax deductible) or to Anna Tunnicliffe.

Sail Hard

Team Tunnicliffe

And as usual, don't forget, email us your questions and comments. We love getting them and sharing our love of sailing.

Barcelona World Race: Jan 26 - Virbac Paprec Videoconference

Short news - Barcelona World Race

Give or take a mile:

For Jean-Pierre Dick and Loick Peyron on Virbac Paprec 3 today has provided an unwelcome breather, thanks to the retirement of close rival Foncia. And with the looming arrival of a high pressure zone the French duo look set to experience another relative pause, as their pace begins to ease this evening to around 15 knots.

No doubt the Spanish teams of MAPFRE and Estrella Damm, now in second and third respectively, feel their promotions were equally unasked-for. However, both making the most of their opportunities as Estrella Damm claims the top speed this afternoon with nearly 18 knots average VMG since 1500hrs, while MAPFRE were sailing at a similar rate at this evening's 2000hrs sched. At that pace, the Spanish contenders are clearly keeping pace with the race leaders – Estrella Damm's mileage deficit has increased by less than 0.5 mile over the course of the afternoon, likewise Renault Z.E. in fifth by just 1.5 miles.

MAPFRE's Xabi Fernandez (ESP) explained how that pace translates into life on board: “We've been sleeping with our boots on for two days now, ready to jump up onto deck at any moment should our companion need a hand, a sail change or a squall moves in and the wind picks up lots. You can't be too careful down here. You've really got to watch out, whilst thinking about the race at the same time.”

Behind the leading trio, both the rankings and relative positions are virtually unchanged: Groupe Bel remains in constant fourth, Mirabaud and Neutrogena have each shed just 10-25 miles from the leader. The only marginally more significant mileage losses are for those boats currently placed 8th to 12th, still above the critical 40th degree line of strong breeze, with 30-50 miles lost to the leader.

3-1 Today Takes Us Into The Gold Fleet - Miami OCR

Miami, FL- We wrapped up the group C round robin today and had a successful day. We finished the day 3-1 making our round robin score 6-1, tied with Lucy MacGregor from Great Britain. We both advance onto the gold fleet that will seed us for the quarterfinals of the US Sailing's Rolex Miami OCR.

Close Quarter Calls
Photo: (c) Dave Hein 2011

We woke up to windy weather this morning and headed out under partly sunny skies to watch the last two races of group B's racing. The wind was up and down, 12-18kts, puffy and shifty. We hopped into our boats around noon and racing got underway soon after that. Our first race and win was against New Zealand's Stephanie Hazard. It was a good close race and got us warmed up and ready for the rest of our races for the day. Our second and third races were against France's Anne-Claire Le Berre, and our USSTAG teammates, Sally Barkow and team, with us taking the win in both races.

The last race of the day was against MacGregor, and it was by far our most exciting race of this regatta so far. We had a very good pre-start and we led her off the line after pinning her outside of the race committee boat. Up the first leg we were ahead by about a boat length leading to the right, but misjudged the layline. This put her in a powerful position on our hip and we ended up following her into the top mark.

Downwind, we were quite fast and almost got into a position to where we could pin her out past the layline for the leeward mark, but missed a wave. She pulled ahead and soaked down into the zone. We had a better mark rounding than her which gave us more speed, and in trying to round on the outside and force her to tack, we hit her and drew a penalty.

But we sailed fast upwind and again rounded just behind her. She had a slow spinnaker set and we were able to jump her and roll over the top of her to take the lead with the chance to burn our penalty. Shortly thereafter, she soaked inside of us so we gybed at her. We luffed, she broached, we caught a puff and a wave and surged ahead by a bit more. We slowed and tried to make a move right at the finish against her, but instead ended up drawing another foul and losing the race. It was a great race and a lot of fun, although our mistakes were rather silly which rather displeased us.

Tomorrow we start racing after group A finishes their last race, and the repecharge group completes three of their races. The forecast is for big breeze and rain; we are hopeful the rain holds off for a while, and we just have the wind.

There are live twitter feeds online with updates. You can find results at the regatta website here.
We would like to thank Carmeuse and Trinity Yachts for their continued support of our campaign for the 2012 Olympics in London. We would also like to thank US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics (USSTAG) and its sponsors for their support. Also, thank you to our private donors. Please remember that any and all donations/contributions to our campaign should be made payable directly to The Sailing Foundation of New York (tax deductible) or to Anna Tunnicliffe.

Sail Hard

Team Tunnicliffe

Foncia describe their mast break and retire from the Barcelona World Race. - News - Barcelona World Race

The report was sent from Foncia’s Michel Desjoyeaux and François Gabart at 0659hrs this Wedenesday morning.

“ On January 26th 2011 at 0240hrs UTC positioned at 41°12,6 S and 8°59,8 E Foncia was sailing a course of 115 degrees at an average of 18 knots under Solent and one reef with the wind at 140 degree blowing at 25-30 knots, wind swell, and had the same conditions for around eight hours.

The mast broke above the solent hound, in other words around 25 metres above the deck (27.3m long tube). The rigging is still up held in place by the lower shrouds, the runners, the staysail stay and main jib stay. The broken sectiont is hanging down at 20m up and is still held in place by the halyards. The solent, unfurled, because in use when the damage occurred was twisted around the whole mast.

The mainsail is held by its halyard at the third reef. Everything has stayed on board, nothing lost overboard. I can’t hide our disappointment, but we are healthy except I have a little pain in my right thumb which I got when I was trying to get the Solent under control.

We do not ask for any assistance. We are currently trying to head for Cape Town under sail, around 600 miles off. Our current speed is 11 knots course 76 deg. The forecasts for the next few days show no risk (today 25 to 30 knots from the S, weakening and clocking W). In two days the passage of the anticyclone (bringing light winds). If the seas are slight then maybe we will have the chance to climb the mast to recover the pieces and to be able to drop the mainsail. After that we should see 20-25 knots from the SE in to Cape Town.

Our ETA Cape Town then should be 30th or 31st January. We retire from the Barcelona World Race.” -

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Going For the America's Cup

Blast from the Past... Dennis Conner on the cover of Time Magazine in 1987.

Tom Blackaller predicting the America's Cup in SF

Tom Blackaller talks about having an America's Cup in SF on Catamarans back in the 1980's!

Big Boats, Big Names Making Plans for the 31st Edition of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta

St. Maarten, (January 25, 2011) – As the anticipation mounts for the 31st running of the annual festival of sailing, music and parties known as the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta—this year’s event is scheduled for March 3-6—the entry list continues to grow…in more ways than one. Not only is the fleet of big boats growing daily, so is the roster of big-name sailors who will be making their way to the Caribbean for this next edition of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta.

For sailors seeking a long-distance challenge followed by the closed-course and point-to-point day races that remain a signature of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, the 2011 Caribbean racing season is shaping up as one of the best ever, with an intriguing and diverse series of events…all of which are conveniently centered around the 2011 St. Maarten Heineken Regatta.

First off, beginning on February 21st, is the 600-mile Caribbean 600 starting in Antigua. And following the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta later in March is Nautor’s ClubSwan Caribbean Rendezvous in the British Virgin Islands.

The Caribbean 600 is proving to be an ideal “feeder” race for the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta. A half-dozen strong entries have already entered both of these stellar races, and several more yachts—with a few interesting surprises—are rumored to announce plans to compete in both regattas in the weeks ahead.

The confirmed entrants for both the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta and the earlier Caribbean 600 range are an interesting mix, including Brian Benjamin’s Carbon Ocean 82, Aegir II; Meghan Grundy’s Custom Tripp 75, Bella Pita; a Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 52, Great Escape of Southampton; Allie Smith’s Beneteau First 50, Hydrocarbon Logic; the Rob Humphrey-designed 54-footer, Oystercatcher XXVII; and Lloyd Thornburg’s spanking new Gunboat 66, Phaedo.

There are some big-name sailors in that diverse fleet, including several aboard Phaedo: professional sailor and Volvo Ocean Race veteran Mikey Joubert, American multihull legend Cam Lewis, and Jan Dekker of Club Med, America’s Cup and VOR fame. Speaking of offshore sailing heroes, one of the most accomplished long-distance sailors ever, five-time round-the-world racer Bouwe Bekking, will reportedly be competing aboard the Grand Soleil 43, Antilope. And behind the wheel of Oystercatcher XXVII will be one of the most accomplished British yachtsman/boatbuilders of this era, Richard Matthews.

A closer look at some of the big boats racing in both the 2011 St. Maarten Heineken Regatta fleet and the Caribbean 600 suggests the competition in the upper echelons of the field will be tight and dramatic. The all-carbon Aegir II, designed by Simon Rogers and sporting a carbon fiber, three-spreader rig, will easily make over ten knots sailing upwind; off the breeze, powered by a massive masthead asymmetric spinnaker spreading over 650 square meters of sail, the sleek 82-footer is capable of 20-knots speeds and more. Aegir II made a stunning debut last September, winning their class at the Rolex Maxi Yacht Cup.

Though somewhat smaller, given the right conditions, Bella PITA—a 75-foot Bill Tripp-designed Maxi Dolphin, which notched a third in the 2010 BVI Spring Regatta—could give Aegir II a run for their money. With its deep, lifting keel complimented by some 1,250 liters of water ballast, Bella PITA is an extremely versatile boat for cruising, short-handed passage making, and the fully crewed racing she’ll enjoy at the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta.

When it comes to the sheer spectacle of sailing, however, it’ll be difficult for competitors and spectators alike to keep their eyes off the 66-foot, South African-built catamaran Phaedo, one of the newest offerings in the outrageous Gunboat line…and painted in an unmistakable Metallic Lamborghini Orange. In the three previous decades of racing at the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, it’s safe to say there’s never been anything on the racecourse quite like Phaedo.

Once again, the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta will be making history. Shouldn’t you come to the Caribbean this March and make some history of your own?

For full information on the Budget Marine Match Racing Cup, Gill Commodore’s Cup and the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, as well as entry lists, past results, photos, videos, party and band information, the Notice of Race, Sailing Instructions and much, much more, visit


San Francisco, Calif., Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Louis Vuitton Cup Starts In July, America’s Cup Match (Finals) In September of 2013

The 2013 race dates for the Louis Vuitton Cup and America’s Cup Match (Finals) were confirmed today by Regatta Director Iain Murray.

Since 1983, the Louis Vuitton Cup – the America’s Cup Challenger Series – has been held when more than one Challenger is vying for the right to race the Defender for the America’s Cup (as is the case for the 34th America’s Cup). The role of the Louis Vuitton Cup is twofold – not only to select the best Challenger, but also to help prepare that the team to race successfully against the Defender in the America’s Cup Match (Finals).

The winner of the Louis Vuitton Cup will race the Golden Gate Yacht Club’s (GGYC) defending team in the finals, a first-to-win-five (best of nine) race series known as the America’s Cup Match (Finals).

Louis Vuitton Cup: 13 July – 1 September 2013*
America’s Cup Match (Finals): 7-22 September 2013**

Under the Protocol Governing the America’s Cup, GGYC as the Defending Club has the responsibility to select the dates.

The official notice of these dates to the currently entered six teams, and other prospective teams, from Regatta Director Iain Murray is now available at under the Gallery section.

San Francisco Bay

*subject to the final number of Challengers and the precise format of the racing TBD by the Challengers and Regatta Director.
**subject to the whether the America’s Cup Match (Finals) is won in five races, or goes the full nine races.

About the America’s Cup
Nearly 160 years old, the America’s Cup is the oldest trophy in international sport. Initially a one-on-one competition between teams representing foreign yacht clubs, the America’s Cup has evolved into one of the world's leading sporting competitions – featuring the best sailors on the world’s fastest boats – the wing-sailed AC45 and AC72 catamarans. The 34th America's Cup Finals will be held in San Francisco in the fall of 2013, with the new America's Cup World Series beginning in 2011. For more information, visit

Rolex Baltic Week

Photo credit: Rolex / Nico Krauss

The Metre yachts and Flensburg Fjord have always had a very special relationship, and next year it will reach new heights at the eighth Rolex Baltic Week, when both the Robbe & Berking 12-Metre World Championship and the Eights’ world cup will be held here. The event will even see His Royal Highness Harald V of Norway take part at the helm of his 8-Metre yacht “Sira”.
In conjunction with Kieler Yacht-Club (KYC), Flensburger Segel-Club (FSC) will welcome the crème de la crème of these classic vessels – including those participating in the Robbe & Berking 6mR Sterling Cup – from 28 June to 3 July 2011. The 12-Metre owners first staged their World Championship in Gluecksburg in 2008 after the 8-Metres held their Euro Cup there in 2005.

The first official entry for a sailing regatta is always very special, but when that entry is filed by a member of a European royal family, it instantly brings a little extra gloss to even a top class event. King Harald V of Norway, who has been known and loved for decades as an excellent offshore sailor and passionate competitor, will come to Flensburg Fjord from his Oslo Fjord home waters. Besides being the owner and helmsman of a number of top notch regatta boats named “Fram”, the Norwegian monarch will pay tribute to his love of classic boats by taking “Sira” (launched in 1938) with sail number NOR 33 to the starting line. Boat captain Kjell A. Myrann was responsible for dispatching the entry form for the seven-man crew skippered by the King, and he also announced a support boat. Whether it will be the Royal Yacht “Norge” who will come to the Rolex Baltic Week, remains as yet open.

Norwegian insiders have let on that as many as three 12-Metre yachts might accompany their royal team to Flensburg. The competition for the Twelves – an America’s Cup class from 1958 to 1987 – will take place on familiar waters for Gluecksburg’s two gems. Both “Sphinx”, built 1939 and relaunched in 2008 following extensive restoration, and “Anitra” (1928), which has been returned to its former glory after an equally lengthy makeover, have chosen Flensburg Fjord as their home ground. This means that in the midst of this top-notch fleet, we will see an exciting intra-club duel in this majestic class.

However, the number one favourite is “Nyala” (1938), with the American sail number US-12, which took the prize back in 2008. Owned by the Italian Prada boss Patrizio Bertelli, the Twelve is usually crewed by a professional team with America’s Cup experience. At the event two years ago, the fashion tsar beat “Trivia” (1937), belonging to Hamburg-based internet pioneer Wilfried Beeck. In 2010, “Trivia” won the Robbe & Berking 12mR Sterling Cup ahead of both “Sphinx” and Patrick Howaldt’s “Vanity V” (1936) from the Royal Danish Yacht Club Copenhagen (RDYC) in a thrilling conclusion to the Rolex Baltic Week.

Also expected to go head to head are Hamburg’s “Heti” and “Erna Signe” from Sandefjord in Norway. Both ships belong to the “Antique” division, meaning they date back to the early days of the Metre classes. The grand old lady from Norway will be celebrating her 100th birthday next year. What could be better than taking part in the World Championship to mark the occasion? Not to be outdone by “Heti”, “Erna Signe” is a mere 99 years old. “Heti’s” design and gaff rig sail plan alone give away her age, however, as the vessel has undergone years of restoration by the Hamburg Maritime Association as part of its youth training project “Jugend in Arbeit”. She has been back on the water with her historic rigging for several years.

Flensburg won over the race organisers from the International Eight Metre Association (IEMA) to be selected as their World Championship hosts, ahead of bids from France and Italy. “The 8-Metre class association was delighted to accept the FSC’s offer to host the World Cup. We were very impressed by our positive experiences both back in 2005 and at the Euro Cup during the Rolex Baltic Week 2010,” said Andreas Lochbrunner from Lindauer Segler-Club, who welcomed the fleet of Eights in 2006 for the World Championship on Lake Constance. He also praised the smooth collaboration between the two host clubs, FSC and KYC.

Lochbrunner, who is the owner of the 8-Metre “Elfe”, expects a large fleet of at least 15 boats to enter the Flensburg Fjord event. “With the Twelves holding their World Championship at the same time, the only problem is that it is more difficult for some owners to take part as they are active in both classes. We will do our best to organise charters to help out,” Lochbrunner promises. He certainly plans to enter with his unusual boat – the smart Abeking & Rasmussen design is the only double-masted Eight. The ketch also features a rare wishbone rig.

Once again, “Elfe” will face Richard Gervé’s “Sposa” in a Lindauer SC intra-club contest. Like “Elfe”, the gaff-rigged yacht was constructed in 1912 and is therefore classed in the First Rule division (vessels built between 1907 and 1919). Following the Rolex Baltic Week 2010, “Sposa” stayed up north, meaning she will be ready to race in 2011 without the need for land transport. Andreas Lochbrunner hopes that other First Rule division yachts will enter the competition. They could include “Lucky Girl”, built by William Fife III, which was completed in 1910 and is now shipshape again following refurbishment. Owned by Siegfried Buss, she sails under the British flag but is berthed on Lake Constance. Another candidate, “Edit” belonging to Wilhelm Wagner from Bodman, will turn 100 next year. She was also built in Finland in 1911 based on a design by Alfred Mylne for the Olympic Games, which were held in the Swedish capital Stockholm in the following year.

“Classic” Eights (vessels built between 1920 and 1966) will make up the largest division. “We fully expect to see a number of ships from Scandinavia. There are lots of classic Eights in Finland alone,” explains Lochbrunner. It goes without saying that the “Modern” 8-Metre yachts (built between 1967 and the present day) are expected to be the fastest on the regatta course. The organisers expect a field of three or four modern vessels in this attractive, classic design to pit themselves against their historic predecessors. Favourites include the Swiss “YQuem II” owned by Jean Fabre, which triumphed at the 8-Metre Euro Cup in summer 2010 during the Rolex Baltic Week in Kiel. Her greatest competitor is expected to be Iris Metten’s “Aluette” (constructed in 1995 and also from Switzerland), which bagged a third World Championship title in Toronto, Canada in 2010 – assuming the yacht is transported back to Europe from North America.

Approximately 20 Eights could line up under starter’s orders in Gluecksburg. They will sail windward-leeward courses within sight of the shore. The ORC World Championship races in September 2010 showed that the idyllic inner fjord between Germany and Denmark is an ideal venue. Both the Robbe & Berking 12-Metre and 8-Metre World Championships are due to consist of nine races, which will commence on 29 June. The FSC’s Principal Race Officer Claus-Otto Hansen is already looking forward to the competition: “The Rolex Baltic Week 2011 will be an outstanding event which will further establish Flensburg Fjord’s good reputation as a championship venue.”


America’s Cup-winning trimaran USA 17 bound for San Francisco

USA 17 has only ever competed twice, but she sailed the races of her life to dominate the Swiss defender, Alinghi, off Valencia, Spain, last year and win the 33rd America’s Cup.

The extraordinary carbon-fiber machine is being loaded onto the freighter M.V. Star Isfjord this week for the long delivery trip to San Francisco via the Panama Canal. The freighter carrying both USA 17 and her extraordinary 223ft wingsail is scheduled to leave Valencia on January 29 or 30 for the 7,900-nautical-mile passage to the Bay Area.

The estimated arrival in San Francisco, dependent upon on-time loading, sea conditions en-route and transit time in the Panama Canal, is March 1.

The trimaran’s arrival will mark the first time that USA 17 visits the city that ORACLE Racing calls home. She was launched in Anacortes, WA, in August 2008, and after initial testing there moved to San Diego, CA, for a further period of training before being moved to Valencia for the 33rd Cup Match last February.

Measuring more than 100 feet long and 90 feet wide and powered by a 20-storey tall wingsail, USA 17 is the fastest yacht to ever win the America’s Cup. It has been in storage in Valencia since winning the Cup on Feb. 14, 2010.

With the ORACLE Racing team fully focused on laying the groundwork for its 34th America’s Cup campaign in 2013, the provisional plan is to continue to keep USA 17 in storage after unloading. An announcement about the vessel’s sailing plans will be made later this year.

“The handful of us privileged to sail on USA 17 would love to sail her again in an instant. I dare say all those who never had this chance would like to as well,” said ORACLE Racing skipper James Spithill.

“But the stark reality is that every aspect of the boat, every component, was built right to the limit so that for every hour’s sailing USA 17 required 20 hours of painstaking and rigorous maintenance. For the time being the team’s focus will be on the America’s Cup ahead.”

Monday, January 24, 2011

Atlantic crossing - Day 7 and 8 - 2130 nm to go - The World Tour

Rain is gone. Although it took around 15 hours to get rid of. Fantastic how different the world can appear in different lights. We are now definitely in the tropics, with a position of N 19.20° W 24.55°, and finally have those warm nights arrived, making the watches much easier to go through. I'm thinking by the way of having a swim in the deep blue sea very soon as the heat is quite unbearable at times. Alex tells me there might be sharks and tries to scare me but I don't intend letting either him or the movie "The Reef" stand in between me and my mid Atlantic dive, for there can't be sharks in the middle of the deep Atlantic ocean, can there? And if there is, how great would the risk be to have a hungry one just around our boat when I dive in? The Reef was by the way a good movie, thanks for the tips whoever that was of our dear readers suggesting us to see it. A bit frustrating though to watch people taking such stupid decisions like the ones taken in the movie.

No flying fishes here yet as far as I am concerned, only a very strange fish swimming along with us next to the hull of our boat, just like a dog or some other type of pet following it's owner. Please let me know if anyone can identify this weird animal. Is it eatable?

We have now been out here for seven days and only two ships have we met. Definitely thought there would be a bit more traffic around here, although we do not mind the loneliness at all. Feels good to have the ocean all to ourselves. Definitely better for the tan as well, as we're able to be naked as much as we want to without curious eyes watching. Speaking of tan, the tone of my skin is slowly turning into something reminiscent of raisins, I might look like an old, dry grapefruit when we're done with this passage although everything is better than the pale white winter look I was sporting earlier.

Although we were earlier convinced that we had found those tradewinds, they quickly died out on us after a few days. It's been some slow and frustrating last 24 hours here with ultra light winds and terribly uncomfortable rolling seas. I can't believe I once was dreaming of dead calm mid Atlantic days, they are the worst to ever have to encounter. Especially when we've decided to not make a stop in Cape Verde to refuel. Will the fuel last all the way to the West Indies is the question of the day. Or no, that is actually not a question any longer, it just has to last as we do not have other options any longer. We're now heading further down SW to catch up with the established trades which we've found on the grib-files and we're having some 300 nm to go before we can turn completely to the West.

I can by the way see that we have +200 new friend requests on Facebook, unfortunately we can't accept them from here so bare with us for two more weeks, will you. Also we're sorry that we can't answer much emails and comments from the sea, will take care of it all when we're back on normal Wifi connection again.

/Taru -

New America's Cup AC45 wing-sailed catamaran : first sailing session in ...

Trophee Jules Verne of Banque Populaire : start on heaver weather

ALL4ONE announce three year sponsorship deal and new boat build to compete on the 2011 Audi MedCup

The Franco-German team, managed by Jochen Schümann, becomes “Audi Sailing Team powered by ALL4ONE”, following a new three-year agreement reached with title partner Audi. The team have confirmed the build of a new TP52 in Sydney, with which they aim to finish among the podium positions on both the Audi MedCup Circuit and at TP52 World Championship.
ALL4ONE introduce both a new name and a new boat in 2011 as a result of reaching a sponsorship agreement with main sponsor, Audi. The campaign, led by France’s Stephane Kandler, will be known as “Audi Sailing Team powered by ALL4ONE”. The team have confirmed they are building a new TP52 designed by Judel/Vrolijk at McConaghy in Sydney, Australia. Their objective is to finish the 2011 season on the Audi MedCup Circuit in a top three overall position, and then will compete on the TP52 World Championship in October.

The new boat launch is expected to take place in Valencia in May in time for the boat to be ready for training prior to the first Audi MedCup Circuit competition event.

Expectations for Audi Sailing Team powered by ALL4ONE crew and skipper, Jochen Schüman, triple Olympic gold medalist and two-time winner of the America’s Cup, are high:

"First, we are pleased that the new Audi contract allows us to take part next season in the Audi MedCup Circuit. With the new TP52 our goal is to finish among the top three in the overall standings and win one of the season’s five events," said the German skipper.

There will be no major crew changes from 2010 line up:

"Jochen Schumann (GER) will be our skipper and Sebastien Col (FRA) will continue as tactician. There is no reason to make big changes. The three-year collaboration with Audi and their confidence in our capabilities is great news for "ALL4ONE" and all this allows us to work in ideal conditions: continuity, a permanent base in Valencia, a media agreement and a competitive boat. This is the recognition of a great new team in 2010," said Kandler, whose team will continue to enjoy the support of the French television group, Canal +, partners since 2004, by following of Kiel Woche, the 2011 Audi MedCup Circuit and TP52 World Championships.

The Franco-German campaign will particularly encourage the integration of young talent to the team, which, in the words of Jochen Schumann “it allows for German sailors in the Audi Sailing Team Germany, the German national sailing team, to train with us and participate in the boat deliveries. This is a great scouting opportunity which could see between 25 and 30 young sailors sailing in TPs over the next years and maybe even a skipper to replace me.”

"ALL4ONE" is a pan-European team founded and directed by Stephan Kandler, ex-crew member of the French America's Cup syndicate K-Challenge, and Jochen Schumann, triple Olympic gold medalist and double America’s Cup winner, with crews members from France, Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Holland and Italy.

Day 1, Late Finish, 3-0, Good Day - US SAILING’s Rolex Miami OCR

Miami, FL - We have just gotten home from a late day of sailing, finishing up day 1 of US SAILING’s Rolex Miami OCR. Group C completed three races this afternoon hitting the dock at 6pm. We had a good day finishing with three wins in our three races. It was a beautiful day, cloudy, but the wind was up around 12-15kts and mostly flat water. The temperature was in the high 60's/low 70's which made it very pleasant.

Team Tunnicliffe Leading Dellenbaugh M3F15
Photo: (c) @RMOCR_CourseF
The day had a very relaxed start for us. We were not scheduled to race until the other two groups had completed three races each, which meant that we didn't have to leave the house until 12:30pm. We left and got to the club in time, changed and headed out to watch two of group B's races. We wanted to head out so we could see what the wind was doing on the race course to help get us clued in for when it was our turn.

We finally got into our boats, and after a bit of time to get ready we started racing. Our closest match was the last race against Sweden's Anna Kjelberg. In the prestart, we gave her a penalty, we maintained control and led her off the line. Up the first beat we were within half a boat length for a while and then we correctly hit a couple of shifts at the top to extend to a two length lead. Downwind, we sailed the shifts but coming into the leeward mark, Kjelberg rode a puff into us and rounded half a length behind us. Upwind again, we extended on the shifts and continued to increase our lead downwind to cross the line to take the win. At this point the sun was about 30 minutes from setting so the race committee sent us in for the day.

Tomorrow's racing starts at 9:30 for the match racers. Group B will start the day, and we will race second. The plan is for the RC to wrap up the round robins which means four flights for each group. Luckily the forecast is for 10-20kts tomorrow so there should be no problem in getting the races in.

There will be live twitter feeds online with updates. You can find results at the regatta website here.

We would like to thank Carmeuse and Trinity Yachts for their continued support of our campaign for the 2012 Olympics in London. We would also like to thank US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics (USSTAG) and its sponsors for their support. Also, thank you to our private donors. Please remember that any and all donations/contributions to our campaign should be made payable directly to The Sailing Foundation of New York (tax deductible) or to Anna Tunnicliffe.

Sail Hard

Team Tunnicliffe

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Wanna lose a little weight this year?

Foilfeed® has worked on a development project based on the Foilfeed® M1 for mainsails. Basically, the M1 can replace the traditional headboards and rivets, saving weight and time, still saving the mast and luff tapes from the tear and wear.

The focus of this development was aimed at small keelboats and dinghies, that - by tradition - sail around with traditional heavy headboard solutions in their mainsails, adding excess weight and material.

This is not to say, that headboards are redundant from now on, but merely that there is a useful and better alternative for the majority of one design classes around now, substantiated by the Foilfeed® M1. Especially if you're looking for margins like saving weight aloft, saving your spar and avoiding luff tape problems... lose weight at

Saturday, January 22, 2011

SDYC Hoist Area Time Lapse Etchells Worlds Qualifier 1.8.2011

Jules Verne Trophy record attempt

The Maxi Trimaran Banque Populaire V left this morning on her first attempt on the Jules Verne Trophy record

The boat and the crew have been set for weeks. They set off this morning from the Port du Chateau in Brest and crossed the start line off Ushant at 11h11m45sec (UTC) for the Maxi Trimaran Banque Populaire’s first attempt on the Jules Verne Trophy. Pascal Bidegorry and his 13 crew have to be back in less than 48 days, 7 hours, 44 minutes and 52 seconds in order to beat the record time established by Groupama 3 in March 2010.
A tricky window

It was just before 9 am this morning when the Maxi Trimaran left the dock, in the Port du Chateau in Brest. Between the excitement of leaving and the emotion of leaving families, the moment was really intense for the 14 crew.

Extremely focused on attacking this first attempt, the skipper Pascal Bidegorry is happy about leaving today, even though the weather conditions are not that clear: «we will be leaving downwind and sailing around a depression. Below this depression, we cannot hide from the fact that the forecast is not straight forward. However, we have been waiting for this moment for a long time and we cannot let this opportunity go. I am really excited to be going to sea and I really think that we deserve it. I am looking forward to tomorrow morning, tomorrow night or in two days time and realising: “that’s it ! We’re there!”. These stand-by periods are somewhat painful and I am really looking forward to saying that we are in the Jules Verne Trophy, the objective of the past four years. This is a great moment in my life. "

The Canaries, a central concern
Indeed, the weather situation is not that clear over the Atlantic, as Brian Thompson explained just before leaving the dock: “We are confronted by two different weather models: the European and the American ones. They are showing us different things so we decided to go for the pessimistic one, the European, in order to avoid falling in light winds. In fact, there is a low pressure off the Canaries which is going to kill the trade winds a little bit and then another massive low crossing the Atlantic. As this latter comes closer, it might completely kill the trade winds. We are just trying to sneak pass a little low over the Canaries, turn round that and get down to the South before the big depression comes over.”

It will be no mean feat for the Skipper, Pascal Bidegorry and his 13 crew onboard Banque Populaire V, and for them the 10th March will be highlighted in their diaries as the date to aim for as they attempt to sail into the record books.

Friday, January 21, 2011

ORACLE Racing: Eye in the sky - aerial shots of the AC45

sailing vid

On Board Oracle - Key West Race Week 2011 - By Leighton O'Connor

New build TP52 Container to compete on 2011 Audi MedCup Circuit

The new Container, owned by Udo Schütz from Germany, will debut in the world’s leading monohull class, the TP52 Series on the Audi MedCup in 2011. She will compete with an experienced, professional crew led by Markus Wieser, a European Champion and World Championship runner-up in the Dragon Class. Wieser is also experienced match racer and has frequently sailed in the afterguard aboard TP52s.

Udo Schütz’ Container, known for its campaigns recently in the Mini Maxi class and further back as a winner of the Admiral’s Cup as part of the German team, will campaign in the TP52 class of the 2011 Audi MedCup with a new Judel & Vrolijk design. The team will make its debut at the first event of the circuit in May.
“It is a great opportunity to lead the Container team into a new era – a highly skilled group of people, some of whom already have experience in the TP52 class,” said Wieser. “We remain realistic and we know that competition is very strong but anything can happen during the short windward-leeward races.”

“It was a logical step for us, based on our experiences from the Mini Maxi class”, explained Team Owner, Udo Schütz. “There is no higher professional way of sailing on monohulls in the world – the
perfect environment to showcase and develop our products.”

Schütz is a successful businessman who’s state of the art technology is used in the construction of lightweight components for principally the aerospace and automotive industries.

The new TP52 Container is being built by Green Marine in Lymington, UK and is expected to be delivered in a record time of just four months. Container is the sistership to another new TP52 under construction at Green Marine, Niklas Zennström’s Ràn.

This is the first of a number of team announcements expected for the coming season.

Boat Specifications

Class: TP52
Length: 15.85 m (52 feet)
Width: 4.42 m
Draft: 4.35 m
Weight: 7,300 kg
Mast Height: 23:80 m
Upwind Sail Area: 93,5 m² (main sail) and 65 m² (foresail)
Gennaker: 260 m²
Capacity: 13 crew
Design: Judel / Vrolijk & Co
Builder: Green Marine Ltd., Lymington/UK

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

On A Warpath In Key West


Key West, Fla. - The Melges 32 fleet enjoyed absolutely stunning conditions today at Key West Race Week. With two additional races complete, Steve Howe on Warpath (Morgan Larson, tactician) now leads the overalls just ahead of Alex Jackson’s Leenabarca (Rob Greenhalgh, tactician) in second, followed by overnight leader Doug Douglas on Goombay Smash (Chris Larson, tactician) now third.

Plentiful sunshine, an initial 6-8 knots of breeze, manageable seas and temperatures in the mid-70’s made it a perfect day for sailboat racing as the Melges 32s prepped for the Course 4 first gun. It was an all around good start for Howe and his Warpath crew as they easily won the pin end start with Douglas alongside. Douglas was blistering fast upwind launching out front of the fleet almost immediately, nailing the first mark rounding with Bob Hughes on Heartbreaker (Chris Rast, tactician) in second and Jackson in third. Downwind, Jackson made his move rounding through the gate first coming in from the pressure driven right, closely followed by Hughes. Douglas’ speed served him well on the final upwind beat. He slowly, but surely overtook Jackson for second, leaving a very determined Leenabarca in third.

Race two commenced under the same conditions and bearings as the first (190 @ 1.7nm), this time a Course 5 with the breeze noticeably diminishing. It was a devastating start for Jackson as he was called OCS, yet recovered to finish seventh. On the contrary, Howe offered nothing but complete domination holding off stiff competition from Phil Lotz’s Arethusa (Ed Baird, tactician). The two assumed the first and second fleet positions from the very start to finish, to win. Fleet newcomer Mark Plaxton on INTAC (Peter Holmberg, tactician) had a wonderful final race of the day to take third, Yukihiro Ishida’s Yasha Samurai (Hamish Pepper, tactician) finished fourth while Terry McSweeney’s Flat Stanley rounded out the top five.

Going into Wednesday, everyone clearly has their work cut out for them as it will put six races (potentially) on the board and discards go into effect. Howe leads by one point, Jackson is right behind and Douglas is third some 12 points out of first. Depending on how well each of the top teams perform, Wednesday may determine their fate with only three days to go in Key West.

Friends, family and fans of the Melges 32 are able to tune-in and enjoy the racing action and developments from a distance, special thanks to Sail 22’s all new Sailing Updates. They anticipate bringing as-it-happens coverage from the water. A very special thanks to Steve Rhyne's Mojo Team.

Daily race reports, press release and photos will be available at the official website of the International Melges 32 Class Association. If you are unable to attend Key West Race Week 2011, stay in touch by subscribing to the IM32CA RSS Feed or visiting the Official Melges 32 Blog. The Melges 32 can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.

TOP TEN RESULTS (After four races)
1.) Steve Howe/Morgan Larson, Warpath; 2-6-5-1 = 14
2.) Alex Jackson/Rob Greenhalgh, Leenabarca; 3-2-3-7 = 15
3.) William Douglas/Chris Larson, Goombay Smash; 4-1-2-15 = 22
4.) Joe Woods/Paul Goodison, Red; 8-9-4-10 = 31
5.) John Kilroy, Jr./Nathan Wilmot, Samba Pa Ti; 5-10-6-11 = 32
6.) Phil Lotz/Ed Baird, Arethusa; 11-3-17-2 = 33
7.) Bob Hughes/Chris Rast, Heartbreaker; 7-21-1-8 = 37
8.) Yukihiro Ishida/Tony Rey, Yasha Samurai; 13-7-14-4 = 38
9.) Peter Rogers/Ruairdah Scott, Highlife; 1-20-11-9 = 41
10.) Oscar Strugstad/Andy Beadsworth, Dawn Raid; 6-5-21-12 = 44
View Full Results
View Full Crew List
2011 Key West Race Week Official Event Website

View 2011 Key West Race Week Photo Gallery
A very special thanks to Alex Jackson's Leenabarca.


2011 Key West Race Week is the second of three, major 2011 Winter Series events for the Melges 32 in North America. On March 4-6, the fleet will assemble for the final series event in Miami, Fla. — the Melges 32 Miami Championship.

In Europe, things will heat up in the spring with yet another spectacular line-up of Audi Sailing Series events beginning in March, leading up to Copa Del Rey on August 1-6, culminating at the 2011 Melges 32 World Championship in Palma de Mallorca, Spain.

Mascalzone Latino holds the provisional leadership

Mascalzone Latino holds the provisional leadership
after the second racing day of the 2011 Key West Week

Key West (USA), 19th January 2011

Yesterday it was a fabulous day for Mascalzone Latino, who is taking part in the 2011 Key West Week. Vincenzo Onorato’s team won both races and this achievement granted it the first position on the provisional scoreboard.

The weather conditions were perfect for a regatta, with a Southerly wind averaging 12 knots; conditions that enabled the Regatta Committee to arrange two races: the first one on a four-sided route (two upwind and two downwind legs), the second one on a five-sided route (three upwind and two downwind legs).

Two good starts (the first one better than the second), right tactical decisions and crew hard work let Mascalzone Latino leave behind, in both races, Team Aqua with tactician Cameron Appleton and ORACLE Racing with Russell Coutts calling tactics.
During the whole day the leading positions changed several times at each mark, with Mascalzone Latino always on top of the fleet, making life hard for the competitors.

“It was the case of a hard battle in both regattas, from start to finish – stated Vincenzo Onorato, visibly happy – today was a great day for Mascalzone Latino. Two first places added to the first position on the scoreboard are a good achievement, for the crew’s motivation also, even though we can’t forget we are only at the beginning of this championship. There are still many regattas to race, and the other competitors are at least on the same level as we are; nevertheless we are on the right track and believe to be quite capable to carry on as well as we started.”

Today there are two more regattas on schedule, starting time again at 10H30. The weather forecast is for very light breezes.

Provisional general score-board

1. Mascalzone Latino, ITA , (Vincenzo Onorato-Francesco Bruni), 3-2-1-1, 7 pti
2. Team Aqua, UAE, (Don Wilson-Cameron Appelton) 1-1-2-3, 7 pti
3. Oracle Racing, USA, (Chris Museler-Russell Coutts), 2-3-3-2, 10 pti

Monday, January 17, 2011

Douglas’ Goombay Smash And Jackson’s Leenabarca Rule The Melges 32s In Key West

17 JANUARY 2011

Douglas’ Goombay Smash And Jackson’s Leenabarca Rule The Melges 32s In Key West

Key West, Fla. - Positioned in first and second respectively, Doug Douglas’ Goombay Smash (Chris Larson, tactician) and Alex Jackson’s Leenabarca (Rob Greenhalgh, tactician) lead the twenty-one strong Melges 32 fleet with five points a piece. Steve Howe’s Warpath (Morgan Larson, tactician) finished nicely three points behind to place third overall.

Light breezes, warm temps, a Course 4 at 180 degrees and lumpy, bumpy seas set the stage under partly- to mostly-cloudy skies for the opening day. Great Britain’s Peter Rogers on Highlife (Ruaridh Scott, tactician) managed to get off the line well taking the early lead with Douglas and Jackson fighting for the top spot slot. While Rogers maintained his lead, Jackson and Douglas also had second place runner Howe to contend with. Howe, like Rogers, held steadfast and true the entire race defending his fleet position. Rogers took the win with Howe in second and Jackson beat Douglass for third. Defending Key West Champion John Kilroy on Samba Pa Ti (Nathan Wilmot, tactician) finished fifth sporting a new paint job, new gear, new everything for his return to Key West and the 2011 Melges 32 racing circuit.

The final race of the day was a Course 5 providing lighter winds, and the seas sort of calmed as well. With a shift right at the start of race two, a couple of teams found themselves instantly in trouble being called OCS. Douglas was quick to advance up the first beat to round behind race leader Geoff Pierini on Shakedown (Gavin Brady, tactician). The key moment of the race took place at the last leeward gate when Douglas had just barely caught up with Pierini, the two splitting the difference. Pierini’s mistake was that he chose the left gate, while Douglas took the right and the right is where the pressure was. Taking full advantage of the situation, Douglas and Jackson gained substantial ground back upwind to surpass Pierini, finishing first and second. Phil Lotz on Arethusa (Ed Baird, tactician) moved up to take third, while Pierini slipped to fourth and Oscar Strugstad’s Dawn Raid (Andy Beadsworth, tactician) rounded out the top five.

Friends, family and fans of the Melges 32 are able to tune-in and enjoy the racing action and developments from a distance, special thanks to Sail 22’s all new Sailing Updates. They anticipate bringing as-it-happens coverage from the water. A very special thanks to Steve Rhyne's Mojo Team.

Daily race reports, press release and photos will be available at the official website of the International Melges 32 Class Association. If you are unable to attend Key West Race Week 2011, stay in touch by subscribing to the IM32CA RSS Feed or visiting the Official Melges 32 Blog. The Melges 32 can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.

TOP TEN RESULTS (After two races)
1.) William Douglas/Chris Larson, Goombay Smash; 4-1 = 5
2.) Alex Jackson/Rob Greenhalgh, Leenabarca; 3-2 = 5
3.) Steve Howe/Morgan Larson, Warpath; 2-6 = 8
4.) Oscar Strugstad/Andy Beadsworth, Dawn Raid; 6-5 = 11
5.) Phil Lotz/Ed Baird, Arethusa; 11-3 = 14
6.) John Kilroy, Jr./Nathan Wilmot, Samba Pa Ti; 5-10 = 15
7.) Joel Ronning/Bill Hardesty, Catapult; 9-8 = 17
8.) Joe Woods/Paul Goodison, Red; 8-9 = 17
9.) Yukihiro Ishida/Tony Rey, Yasha Samurai; 13-7 = 20
10.) Peter Rogers/Ruaridh Scott, Highlife; 1-20 = 21
View Full Results
View Full Crew List
2011 Key West Race Week Official Event Website

View 2011 Key West Race Week Photo Gallery
A very special thanks to Alex Jackson's Leenabarca.

Caribbean Sun, Trade Wind Fun and the Planet’s Best Sailing Party:

The Countdown to the 31st St. Maarten Heineken Regatta Is On

St. Maarten, N.A. (January 16, 2011) – These days, it’s almost impossible to fathom—now that the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta has become an international phenomenon, a one-of-a-kind festival of world-class sailing, music and parties that over the years has attracted tens of thousands of sailors from every corner of the planet—but once upon a time, it was simply a boat race.

It was meant to be fun. Then it got serious. Seriously. Fun.

That inaugural event was over three decades ago. But now, once again, sailors of all stripes, from near and far, are making plans to congregate on the blue waters of the Caribbean for the 31st edition of the largest, best, most unique sailing event in the islands: the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta. The traditional kick-off to the racing season, including the Gill Commodores Cup—the one-day match racing series prior to the three-day St. Maarten Heineken Regatta—is scheduled for March 3-6.

But the time to make your plans to attend is…now.

As always, for sailors competing aboard yachts ranging from charter boats to Grand Prix thoroughbreds, the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta is an equal opportunity celebration. The racing, featuring a mix of round-the-buoys contests and point-to-point destination races against the backdrop of the sensational coastal views of St. Maarten, simply doesn’t get any better, whatever or wherever the venue.

Yes, the sailing is spectacular, but so too is the other star of the show: the half-Dutch, half-French island of St. Maarten. From the café’s in Marigot, to the pubs in Phillipsburg, to the sizzling barbecues up and down the beaches, St. Maarten has something for everyone. Indeed, the island has it all—boutique hotels, high-rise resorts, upscale casinos and marinas, and some of the best nightlife in the Caribbean. Especially during the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta.

Do you like music? You’ve come to the right place. Every night of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta is a veritable battle of the bands, with multiple sound stages at that evening’s party venue. The best is saved for last, at the Sunday night Awards Ceremony. Previous headliners have included Ziggy, The Wailers, Shaggy, the Marley Brothers, Jimmy Cliff, The Black Eyed Peas and the Neville Brothers.

Serious talent. Serious fun.

For 2011, the entry list is growing by the day. Once again, the fleet is comprised of one-designs and Superyachts, multihulls and daysailers. Geographically, the competitors come from near and far. Many of the local names are familiar to long-time Caribbean racers, including Ian Hope-Ross’s Beneteau First 36.7, Kick ‘em Jenny; Richard Wesslund’s J/120, El Ocaso; Sergio Sagramoso’s latest Lazy Dog, a Grand Soleil 54; and the Melges 24, Budget Marine/Gill.

On the other end of the spectrum, the 2011 St. Maarten Heineken Regatta will be a showcase for some of the grandest, most impressive mega-yachts ranging across the world’s oceans, many of which will make their way to St. Maarten following the Caribbean 600 ocean race…a perfect feeder event for the Heineken. This remarkable contingent includes Aegir II, a Carbon Ocean 82; Bella Pita, a Tripp 75; I-SEA, a Farr 78; the Swan 100, Varsovie; and POS, a Reichel/Pugh 78.

Looking back at the history of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, which in its first thirty years attracted literally thousands and thousands of sailors, the evolution is clear. The fine sailing started it. The people of St. Maarten welcomed it. The wondrous island nurtured it. Heineken Beer quenched its thirst. The parties and music and organization kept people coming back. Word spread. The little boat race became one of the most anticipated, successful yachting events ever.

It’s the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta. And you’re invited.

But only if you’re serious…about your fun.

For full information on the Gill Commodore’s Cup and the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, as well as entry lists, past results, photos, videos, party and band information, the Notice of Race, Sailing Instructions and much, much more, visit

AC45 photos out sailing - 20 knots

Click on images to enlarge!

Photos by Gilles Martin-Raget - 16/01/2011 - Auckland (NZL) - 34th America's Cup - AC45 1st sail.

The buzz around the AC45' maiden voyage on the Hauraki Gulf in Auckland brought a number of internationally-renowned sailing aficionados to the dock where the high-tech wing-sailed catamaran returned after a short shakedown sail.

The test team completed the first sail and were back at the dock by noon in New Zealand before a tropical storm system began to move into the area. The early start afforded the team the chance to launch and sail before returning to the Viaduct base to tuck the boat platform and wing safely back into the shed. The rain came just moments after the shore operations were finished. With flat seas and 10 knots of breeze out of the northeast, the crew had near-perfect testing conditions, but some stormy weather is on the way so the next sailing session will be later in the week.

Here's what was heard from around harbour:

Harold Bennett (PRO 33rd AC)

“It’s an awesome looking boat. I saw it sailing, flying a hull almost immediately and it was pretty impressive. It will be great to see more of them trialling together soon; I reckon the future of the America’s Cup is looking good.”

Peter Lester (Americas’ Cup veteran and sailing TV commentator)
“It’s great to see the first one and it’ll be fantastic when we get a few of them sailing out on the harbour. What also really impresses me is the way the team behind it have really thought about the detailing – and getting it in and out of water efficiently.

Andy Hindley (America's Cup Race Management, COO)
It was an unbelievable first sail. We were in 8-10 knots of breeze and we were sailing at more than double that speed .. .up to about 20 knots at one point.With a bit more breeze we could be going 28 – 30knots.

We were only sailing for a couple of minutes and flying the hull. It’s a great start. There’s a bit of work to do onshore now, but then we will get it back onto the water and sail it as often as we can.

Jimmy Spithill (AC45 Test Skipper and ORACLE RACING Skipper)
"It’s fantastic ...everyone at the dock is smiling. It’s an awesome tool and it’ll be a lot of fun.

The wing’s big and the boat powers up quickly and is easy to sail and maneuverability is not a problem. Straight off the bat we were talking about going racing and how good it is going to be.

We’ll have no problem having close racing. We were doing 20 knots at times.

The wing sail is so much quicker to unload (depower) than a main – with the wing its instant. Teams will get up to speed quickly with these boats and they should be really happy with them.

They are pushing the boundaries and there is a bit of risk in there and that’s what you need in the America’s Cup. I can’t wait to get back out on the water again in this boat.

From a boat off a piece of paper to its first sail, it’s the most impressive I’ve ever seen. Within minutes we were flying a hull and fully loaded. We have the latest technology here with the wing and that’s what the America’s Cup is all about.”

Here are some more photos from Gilles Martin-Raget - just click Here

-Jane Eagleson

Sunday, January 16, 2011

AC45 Wing-Sailed Catamaran Under Sail in Auckland

Auckland, New Zealand:, Sunday, January 16, 2011

New Cat Class Centerpiece of 2011-2012 America’s Cup World Series
Auckland’s Viaduct Harbour showcased a glimpse into the future of the America’s Cup with the debut of the wing-sailed AC45 catamaran. The forerunner to the next generation of America’s Cup boats, the AC45 made its maiden voyage, the first of many sea trials planned over the coming weeks.

“Thanks to the efficiency of the New Zealand boat building industry and a huge effort by our team, the first AC45 is now ready for sea trials just a mere four months after this exciting new multihull class was first conceptualized,” said Tim Smyth, co-construction manager for Core Builders Composites of Warkworth, New Zealand.

The AC45 will be the centerpiece of the 2011-2012 America’s Cup World Series, which will start mid-2011. The high-tech carbon fibre catamaran is the first in a fleet of the new 45-foot one-designs that will be tested by America’s Cup teams before racing on the America’s Cup World Series circuit.

The AC45 is an essential element of the vision for the 34th America’s Cup, which will feature 72-foot catamarans raced on San Francisco Bay in 2013. Focused on creating more on-the-water excitement for both the teams and the fans, the AC45 is designed for both speed and close racing. While capable of closing speeds of up to 30 knots, the AC45 was designed to remain nimble enough to handle the tight race courses planned by America’s Cup Race Management (ACRM).

“The biggest challenge with multihulls is learning how much to anticipate. With the AC45 being a big, powerful multihull capable of tripling the wind speed, your reactions and skills are accelerated. It’s all about being ahead of the cycle,” said ORACLE RACING skipper James Spithill. “I think the AC45 will enable all teams to advance to hard-core race mentality very quickly.”

The AC45 was designed by the ORACLE RACING design and engineering team, which developed the catamaran on behalf of the America’s Cup community. At task was designing a boat that would not only meet the racing criteria, but could also fit inside a 40-foot container, which is the shipping vessel for the America’s Cup World Series.

“The boat was designed for all-around performance so it can be sailed in wide range of conditions, and that means the next America's Cup will see races start on time,” said Ian Burns, ORACLE RACING design coordinator. “Plus it’s a regatta boat, meant for lots of racing, so quick assembly and disassembly was a must to accommodate an active competition schedule.”

The AC45 had to be robust enough to sail through a wide wind range, from 5 to 30 knots, as well as survive in the event of collisions, which are foreseen as teams learn to adapt to multihull closing speeds.

Utilizing the same technology used in the aerospace industry, the hulls are built in carbon epoxy with honeycomb cores, making them extremely stiff and light structures. The sandwich construction involves two carbon skins less than 1mm thick laminated over an ultra-light honeycomb core.

“The new America’s Cup is for those who are hungry for a challenge and the AC45 is really a fresh take on the multihull,” said Vincenzo Onorato, President, Mascalzone Latino.

“We plan to run tight race courses that will force boats to engage with each other, creating really close racing situations. Multihulls are very fast boats and will therefore reach the course boundaries sooner, so races will become a true test of skill and strategy, not just speed,” said Iain Murray, CEO, America’s Cup Race Management and Regatta Director. “The AC45 will fast-track teams to state-of-the-art wingsail technology and crew technique in the first season, and will greatly prepare them for the AC72.”

LOA: 44.13’ (13.45m)
BEAM:22.6’ (6.9m)
DSPL:1,400 kg
Mast Height:70.5’ (21.5m)
Sail Area:1430 sq’ (133 sqm) (up w/main & gennaker), 2,259 sq’ 210 (sqm) (dwn w/main & reacher)
# # #

Mascalzone Latino will race at the XXIV Key West Race Week

Key West (USA), 16th January 2011

After their fine victory in the ORACLE RC44 Cup in Miami last December, Mascalzone Latino, is preparing to race at the Key West 2011, in Florida, sailing again on the one-design designed by Russell Coutts.

The Key West Regatta has always been a ‘must’ for Mascalzone team, a great chance to warm up for the coming racing season, and the team has always shown its strength at this venue, by winning the top prize in 2006 and 2009 in the Farr 40 Class, and getting the second place in 2000 and 2008.

From the 17th to the 21st of January Vincenzo Onorato’s crew will attempt to repeat their winning performance of last month, under similar sailing conditions, as Key West is situated only four hours south of the metropolis where Mascalzone had its last race in the year 2010.(?) On board, together with the Neapolitan owner, will be: tactician Francesco Bruni, two trimmers, Andrea Ballico and Matteo Savelli, mainsail trimmer Paul"Flipper" Westlake, the mastman Simone de Mari, the grinder, Iztok Knafelc and the bowman Davide “Manolo” Scarpa.

Challengers in the RC44 had already been met in Miami, and they'll be: Team Aqua, with Donald “Don” Wilson (USA) as helmsman and Cameron Appleton (NZL) calling tactics, Team Synergy (RUS) with the owner-driver Valentine Zavadnikov (RUS) and Anton Sergeev (RUS) as tactician, ORACLE Racing with Russell Coutts (NZL) as tactician and a driver not yet announced, and also Ironbound with David Murphy (USA) at the wheel and Ian Williams (GBR) calling tactics.

The program does not follow a typical RC44 circuit’s regatta format. Instead of the usual match race plus fleet race format.

Starting from Monday and up to Friday next week, the five contenders will take part only in fleet regattas.
The upcoming regatta will be the second official event for the RC44s in the U.S.A., and it will be the first time that these boats will be present at the legendary Key West’s regatta.

This event, which in many marks the start of the world sailing season, is also a good occasion to prove the level of excitement and performance these boats can offer.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Friday, January 14, 2011

Monster Ribs

Everything is big on this boat!

Why not! 1200 hp.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

SpeedDream Prototype to be built

In order to test some of the innovative ideas of SpeedDream, a 35-
foot prototype will be built.

As the design and engineering for SpeedDream continues to advance, a
decision has been made to build a scaled down 35-foot version of the record
setter monohull. Hundreds of hours of computer engineering and analysis has
already been completed for the SpeedDream design, but there is nothing like a
scaled prototype version out sailing in actual conditions to test the unique ideas and
technical solutions that are at the heart of this project.

“For a typical evolutionary design you start with a set of known performance
parameters and work to gradually improve them,” said Vlad Murnikov, the lead
designer and creative force behind SpeedDream. “But the SpeedDream concept is
so radical and innovative there are no analogs to compare to and improve upon.
While CFD analysis and tank testing are extremely important, they can only get us
so far. It will be very useful to check both the general concept and the hull shape,
appendages and rig configurations on a real scaled version of SpeedDream.

Appendages like the extreme canting/telescoping keel and the lifting/stabilizing foil
have to be tested and optimized in a real sailing environment and this is why we
believe that building the prototype is necessary. I feel that a 35-foot version is the
right size to provide a superb realistic platform to test all the critical SpeedDream

To achieve heretofore unattained speeds and bridge the performance gap
between multihulls and monohulls, SpeedDream relies upon two very innovative
appendages to greatly enhance the boat’s performance; a canting keel that lifts
clear of the water when the boat is fully powered up, and a foil to leeward that
provides not only lift, but also resists leeward force.

“The geometry of most modern canting systems allow for a maximum cant
angle of up to 50 degrees,” said Murnikov. “For SpeedDream we have developed a
proprietary system that allows much higher cant angles while at the same time
being able to significantly reduce loads. The goal ultimately is to sail the boat with
the keel completely out of water thereby removing a significant amount of drag
while maximizing righting moment. In addition, the keel will be telescoping. This
will allow us to fine tune the angle of heel as well as make it more practical to get
the boat in and out of marinas where depth may be an issue.”

Lifting foils have been used in hydrofoil ferries and military craft for decades.
Recent applications in sailing yachts include the DSS stabilizing system developed
by Hugh Welbourn. Curved lifting daggerboards find widespread use in offshore
racing multihulls and in record setting projects like the extreme foiler L’Hydroptere,
the boat that holds the outright speed record.

Cam Lewis, the skipper of SpeedDream said; “I have followed developments
in both monohull and multihulls for decades. This latest Americas Cup was a great
example of how some new developments in foils radically changed the performance
of both boats. It’s these innovative technologies like the telescoping keel and lifting
foils that will set SpeedDream apart from all other monohulls and allow the boat to
not only break, but smash all existing records. We will test these features, along
with others in the SpeedDream-35 prototype and prove to us and the sailing
community that this boat is a step ahead of anything else out there.”

There is a new SpeedDream website -

AC45 Hulls

Photo copyright Gilles Martin-Raget / America's Cup

Barcelona World Race: Taking a long term view?

Cloud activity is increasing a little bit for the leaders, their trade winds are still quite light but they will emerge into stronger SE’lies today. As they do so – in the knowledge that they will get lifted as they go west towards the Brasilian coast – the leaders are likely to crack sheets a little to build speed.

In fact on the 0900hrs ranking this morning we have just seen Virbac-Paprec 3’s speed jump to 13.5 knots and they have made a small gain relative to second placed Foncia.

Estrella Damm in third seem to have had a very straightforward Doldrums crossing emerging with a lead of 49 miles over fourth placed MAPFRE.

In fact for this leading group there will be a strategic decision to be made over the next 24-48 hours, longer for the boats just behind, as to how they set up for the descent into the south Atlantic.

The basic options are to sail wide, west to the Brasilian coast, which will look expensive on the leader-board but making a long term investment in hooking first into a low pressure system as it is generated and being able to ride it right it fast right down into the Southern Ocean, or to sail the more direct southerly course which dices with the vagaries of the Saint Helena high pressure system.

There are risks associated with both, and both choices have not much in the way of a safety net.
On the western route if the system does not generate at just the right time you sail extra miles west and ultimately south waiting, and waiting while the opposition have sailed down inside you.
On the more direct route there is a risk of ending up upwind on the north side of the high pressure system which still holds the propensity to move east and that course becomes a cul de sac of upwind sailing.

Both decisions are based on predictions seven days down the line, and so the longer they can be postponed, as the weather models become increasingly accurate with time.

For Foncia, their hand is played for them as they choose to make their technical stop.

But what will Jean-Pierre Dick and Loïck Peyron choose to do, will they try to protect the inside lane, the direct route? Or will they see a low pressure target to aim for, stay with Foncia and prepare themselves to see their taken by anyone who chooses the direct route towards the waypoint? Decisions will certainly be easier made from behind than in front.

The gains for the group which are still in the remnants for the NE’ly trades seem to continue, Renault ZE Sailing Team and GAES both making around 35 miles on the leaders sicne last night.
Quickest boat on the rankings just now is Central Lechera Asturiana which is still hitching to the west as are Hugo Boss.

And there is disappointment for We Are Water who lost their spinnaker last night when it went in the water and go badly wrapped around their appendages.