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Valencia Sailing

Valencia Sailing is without any doubt the most complete and exhaustive sailing website covering the America's Cup, the TP52 AUDI MedCup and the World Match Race Tour

Last Build Date: Mon, 15 Jan 2018 16:26:34 +0000



Tue, 28 Dec 2010 17:04:00 +0000

Dear readers & friends,

This is the last post of the Valencia Sailing blog.

As of today, please change your bookmarks to

Wild Oats XI first boat to Hobart

Tue, 28 Dec 2010 10:18:00 +0000

[Source: Rolex Sydney Hobart] Bob Oatley’s champion 100-foot supermaxi Wild Oats XI has reasserted its claim as one of Australia’s greatest ocean racing yachts by being first across the Rolex Sydney Hobart finish line.

After storming to the finish at 15-19 knots of boat speed over the final miles, Wild Oats XI reached the finish line off Hobart’s historic Battery Point at 8:37pm this evening, Tuesday 28 December.

Wild Oats XI has been named the provisional line honours winner of the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia organised race pending the decision of the International Jury over a protest by the Race Committee regarding their HF radio. The jury will convene at 1:00pm on Wednesday 29 December at the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania, the race finishing club.

(image) Wild Oats XI, provisional line honors in the 2010 Rolex Sydney Hobart. Hobart, 28 December 2010. Photo copyright ROLEX / Daniel Foster

Wild Oats XI, from the Reichel Pugh design board, led the 87-strong field out of Sydney Harbour after the 1pm start on Sunday afternoon and held pole position for the entire 628 nautical mile race, finishing 30 nautical miles ahead of her nearest rival, Sean Langman and Anthony Bell’s supermaxi Investec Loyal, with Matt Allen’s Ichi Ban a further 51 nautical miles behind and currently in third place.

Wild Oats XI’s elapsed time was 2 days 7 hours 37 minutes 20 seconds with an average speed of a tad over 11 knots of boat speed over the challenging course.

After Neville Crichton’s 100-footer Alfa Romeo blocked Wild Oats’ quest for five straight titles last year, skipper Mark Richards vowed their race preparation would change dramatically.

This year the boat contested many more offshore races and spent significant time on the water ironing out the wrinkles and perfecting the teamwork of a crew comprising some of the biggest names in Australian and New Zealand ocean racing, and now with a staggering 220 Rolex Sydney Hobarts between them. A number of modifications were also made to the boat to improve her upwind performance.

Richards has long resented suggestions that Wild Oats XI was just a fair wind flyer. Her dominance throughout one of the toughest Rolex Sydney Hobarts in recent years should silence the sceptics once and for all.

As in previous years Wild Oats XI will only have a short stopover in Hobart, the delivery crew due to push off between 9:00am and midday tomorrow, Wednesday 29 December, as planned to return to Sydney for the annual Pittwater to Coffs ocean race which starts January 2, 2011

Vincenzo Onorato replies to Salvatore Sarno

Mon, 27 Dec 2010 15:07:00 +0000

Salvatore Sarno, owner of Team Shosholoza, the first ever America's Cup challenger to come from Africa, stated in a recent interview in the Italian newspaper Quotidiano Nazionale that the 34th America's Cup was very expensive and as a result Shosholoza wouldn't be taking part. Vincenzo Onorato, owner of Mascalzone Latino, Challenger of Record, sent Quotidiano Nazionale a letter, replying to Captain Sarno's claims. [Note: The translation from the original Italian text is mine]:

I take inspiration from the interview by Captain Sarno in your newspaper to provide my testimony on the current state of the America's Cup and the budgets the teams that will require in order to participate. Captain Sarno is obviously not informed about the latest changes in the Protocol, dating from December 12th, among which it is reported that the entry fee was lowered to US$ 100,000 instead of € 1 million. The performance bond instead of US$ 3 million dropped to US$ 1 million (200,000 by April 1, 2011 and 800,000 by December 31, 2011).

(image) Russell Coutts (left) and Vincenzo Onorato. Rome, 6 May 2010. Photo copyright Gilles Martin-Raget / BMW Oracle

The spirit with which we acted Russell and I was to dramatically reduce costs; the proof is that for the first time in the history of the Cup, during the first two years racing will be held on one-design yachts of 45 feet. This decision was also motivated to provide time for the teams to find sponsors and funding. I have never stated the minimum budget would be € 80 million. It is plausible Captain Sarno could do the next America's Cup with Shosholoza by spending € 17 million as he stated his budget was in the 32nd edition. This is certainly not a budget to win but the Captain Sarno has demonstrated he was able to achieve more than flattering results with limited resources.

The heart of the problem is different: the world economic situation is very different from the ebullient financial markets that marked the 32nd edition. It is correct when Captain Sarno refers to "these times" as "crazy". For Russell and me this has resulted in filling, in reduced terms, the event and therefore the value of the sponsors' investments.

I would also like to remind that Mascalzone Latino's position is not different from that of the other teams. We do not have any sponsors to date, although we have some important negotiations in progress, and it is our subjective interest (to be able to participate in the event) and objective as Challenger of Record (to have many teams in the race), to keep costs as low as possible. We at Mascalzone Latino declare in all honesty that we are struggling to survive. With the same clarity I would have preferred that important teams such as Team Origin and Shosholoza, instead of using pathetic excuses related to the event format, the catamaran revolution and the budgets, to name a few examples, they limited themselves with more dignity in declaring that at this moment they had no money and no prospects for a sponsor.


Vincenzo Onorato

Bass Strait delivers punishing conditions

Mon, 27 Dec 2010 13:57:00 +0000

[Source: Rolex Sydney Hobart] The forecast gale-force conditions made good today for the bulk of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race fleet with yachts experiencing 40-50 knots of gale to storm-force winds from the west-southwest -- together with massive seas. The toll today was nine yachts retired, some with severe damage, but all crews were reported in good shape.At 1542 AEDST, Ludde Ingvall’s 27-metre Yuuzoo retired from the race with structural and rigging damage. Exact details were unknown but the yacht had reached a safe port in Eden by 1800.Within the hour of the maxi’s retirement, a string of yachts followed suit with the Sydney 38 Swish, the 46-foot Reichel/Pugh Shamrock, the Volvo 60 Southern Excellence and the Nelson Marek 52 Wot Eva abandoned the difficult race due to damage in the unbelievably rough seas and extreme wind conditions.Nick Athineos’ Dodo headed to Eden to drop off an injured crewman who had sustained a broken arm, but was not retiring. Crew onboard the yacht recorded gusts of 45-50 knots.Niklas Zennström's RAN. Photo copyright ROLEX / Carlo BorlenghiMartin Power’s 44-footer Bacardi snapped its mast 35-nautical miles east of Batemans Bay, midway down the Australian New South Wales coast. “Search and rescue options and assets are being arranged as I speak, if needed,” reported Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Commodore Gary Linacre, who had just arrived in Hobart.At 1820, Rob Reynolds’ 14-meter yacht Exile sustained steering damage and retired. Shortly after, Jim Cooney’s supermaxi and pride of Australia, Brindabella, dropped out after suffering damage to her mainsail in the severe conditions. At 1905, Jarod Ritchie’s Beneteau 57 Alchemy III was out with damage to their boom and was headed to Sydney.Earlier, via an 1830 phone interview (listen here) with Ian Burns onboard Wild Oats XI, race favourite and current line honours leader, reported from the treacherous Strait, “There’s still quite a messy seaway leftover from that earlier blow we had. But things are finally settling down. In a couple hours we should be in flatter seas, and probably 10 -15 knots (of wind).”He continued, “This morning around Gabo Island, it was pretty arduous going, very hard to slow the boat down enough to keep it in one piece. We had to get down to very, very small sails and work at keeping the boat slow, so we weren’t crashing off the tops of waves too much – it was pretty rough going. We had many gusts up to 40 knots, and when it gets that windy in Bass Strait, you’ve got a bit on.”“The crew have done a fantastic job. It’s a pleasure to watch. In pretty trying conditions up on the foredeck, often pitching two to four feet underwater. The guys are up there are hanging on to sails and getting them up and down, without a murmur of a problem.” Burns concluded, “The crews are really settled into it now, the second half of the race is really getting starting now.”The forecast for tonight is for winds west to south-westerly at 25 to 35 knots and locally reaching 40 knots in the east then moderating to 20 to 25 knots later in the night overnight, with squalls, associated showers and big seas. Seas are expected to abate overnight, down to 2 - 3 metres later in the evening.Current overall handicap race leader is Stephen Ainsworth’s 63-footer Loki, currently 80 miles southeast of Gabo Island.The remaining intrepid Rolex Sydney Hobart fleet continues battling it’s way to Hobart. The remaining 77 boats include six international entries from the USA, UK, Italy, France, as well as two partly crewed Russian boats, and entries from seven of the eight Australian states and territories.Wild Oats XI, overall leader. Photo copyright ROLEX / Carlo Borlenghi[...]

Video: Ludde Ingvall talks about the Australian challenge in the 34th America's Cup

Sun, 26 Dec 2010 21:09:00 +0000

Ludde Ingvall and Dario Valenza, respectively skipper and project manager of YuuZoo Big Boat Racing, talk about the Australian challenge they submitted for the 34th America's Cup. Despite its length, the video is quite interesting because it allows to see the logic behind the Australian challenge. According to Ingvall we should consider that this challenge has been practically accepted, even if the project lacks any funding. It is surprising that they decide to enter the America's Cup and then start looking for the necessary funds to compete and not the other way round.

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Video: Dramatic scenes at the start of the Rolex Sydney Hobart

Sun, 26 Dec 2010 10:32:00 +0000

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Wild Oats XI leads fleet out of Sydney Harbour

Sun, 26 Dec 2010 09:28:00 +0000

[Source: Rolex Sydney Hobart] The Mark Richards skippered 100 footer, Wild Oats XI, shrugged off a cheeky challenge from Grant Wharington’s Melbourne 98 footer, Wild Thing, to stamp its mark early on the Rolex Sydney Hobart line honours battle.Despite forecasts that this will be one of the toughest Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Races in years, the 87 strong fleet started in remarkably mild conditions on a flat Sydney Harbour at 1pm today in an 11 knot west-nor-westerly breeze.Both start lines reported clean starts as nearly 1000 competitors began the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s Aussie yachting classic under overcast skies in a light wind that produced a colourful spinnaker procession out of the Harbour before the fleet turned at the seaward mark to point south towards Hobart.On the eastern side of the front start line, reserved for the largest boats, Grant Wharington staged a nail-biting and brilliant start with just seconds to spare at the helm of Wild Thing. The 100 footers, Bob Oatley’s Wild Oats XI and Sean Langman and Anthony Bell’s Investec Loyal squared off on the western side, while Stephen Ainsworth’s Loki timed things perfectly about a third of the way down the tightly congested line.Wild Oats XI leads the fleet. Sydney, 26 December 2010. Photo copyright ROLEX / Carlo BorlenghiAs Wild Oats XI and Investec Loyal sprinted down the western harbour shore, Wild Thing steamed along the eastern shore in better pressure past Vaucluse and Watsons Bay. Wild Oats XI won the sprint to the sea mark, 13 minutes 48 seconds into the race despite trailing her jib briefly in the water as she changed to her light Code Zero sail minutes after the start. Once she turned seaward, Wild Oats’ Code Zero made way for a giant spinnaker as the four-time line honours winner gybed to find the shortest route to the seaward mark. Two boat lengths behind Wild Oats XI, Wild Thing and Investec Loyal converged on the harbour mark, Wild Thing squeezing her rival out as she slipped inside. Investec Loyal immediately headed towards South Head and Wild Thing held her course toward the north, looking for the pressure advantage they needed to have any chance of mowing down the leader in these flat conditions. The gamble didn’t paid off for Wharington, who also had an incident with a media boat just inside South Head, and by the time Wild Oats XI was at the sea mark, the point at which the impressive fleet converged and gave chase and turned the sea into boiling whitewater, the thoroughbred had opened a handy break on her line honours rivals.The last boat to leisurely leave Sydney Harbour was the Italian entry Onelife, one of two entries in the Cruising Division.Sometime this evening the fleet will encounter a southerly change of 15 to 20 knots accompanied by scattered thunderstorms.RAN at the start of the Rolex Sydney Hobart. Sydney, 26 December 2010. Photo copyright ROLEX / Carlo Borlenghi[...]

Captain Sarno: This America's Cup is very expensive; Shosholoza will not take part

Thu, 23 Dec 2010 20:55:00 +0000

An unknown outside South Africa, Captain Sarno became a household name in the sailing world when he built from scratch Shosholoza, the first ever America's Cup challenger from Africa. An Italian by birth but a fervent South African at heart, Captain Sarno showed the world what the new South Africa was able to do by entering the world's oldest sports trophy competition and managing to have a decent performance despite being absolute beginners with a relatively low budget.Sarno spoke to the Italian newspaper "Quotidiano Nazionale" about Shosholoza, the America's Cup and why there won't be any South African entry in this edition:What is happening? Do you ever get stopped by sailing fans that want to ask you about Shosholoza? Can you tell us what they tell you?"Well, it happens much more often than I would have ever imagined. Shosholoza has remained alive in the minds of sailing fans because everybody could have been in the role of one of my guys. I'm asked whether we'll take part in the next America's Cup and I reply it will be very difficult. Many people want to know what my guys are doing and they are not surprised to learn that almost all of them went back to their original jobs."Let's step back a few years. How was Shosholoza born?"Shosholoza was a dream and now it's a reality."How do you make a dream come true?"It costs tremendous stress. My son who is an excellent surgeon has always told me there two types of stress: the good one and the bad one. The good one is a product of work you like and projects like Shosholoza: something that tires you but doesn't make you sick. The bad one is produced by people's wickedness but also form work that you don't like. One can fall ill and have his health deteriorate, just like it happened to me due to the wickedness after Shosholoza. I have always been a dreamer, just like the song of Peppino di Capri. As a child, at my home in Nocera, I used to climb the mountain to see a glimpse of the sea, and dreamed of conquering it, one day, sooner or later. I have never stopped, I have always believed in it and in every thing I have done I have always put all my effort and above all my passion."Is there a secret in all that?"The secret is simple and complex: you really have to believe in your dream, even if it's a big one; never re-dimension it or settle with anything less. Of course you need a thorough analysis of a project but the most important ingredient is passion and that strange thing you feel in your chest when you think about it, that thing called "feeling" in English. Having that thing you are able to transmit the passion to the rest of people, those that have to follow you and, above all, those that have to finance you. I can guarantee you that people can see if there is true passion."So, we now come to Shosholoza. When did the adventure really start?"In the moment I started having a crew of black guys, in 2001. I thought it would be possible to show the world that in the new South Africa, blacks and whites could achieve something good working together, and what stage could be better than the America's Cup? That's when I talked to my sons and wife."What was the first real step towards the Cup?"Surely the name. I would have liked to use "Madiba” which is how black people called Mandela, but then I thought someone would insinuate that I wanted to use Mandela, and I profoundly love and respect him to let somebody insinuate something like that. This is why I chose Shosholoza, which is a hymn to team work, just what we wanted."Professionalism at the highest level, no set working hours and always a thousand unexpected things around the corner. How does the table of sailing's giants look like?"It's much easier than you think and in any case much easier than my normal job that is full of uncertainties and difficulties of any kind."And now, that everything seems to have changed with the new cata[...]

BMW pulls out of Oracle Racing

Thu, 23 Dec 2010 12:28:00 +0000

[Source: BMW Oracle] At the end of the year BMW will bring to a close its longstanding partnership with ORACLE Racing and thereby end its involvement in the America's Cup. This is by mutual agreement of both partners. Both parties set ambitious goals and achieved the ultimate objective: winning the America's Cup.

BMW has partnered BMW ORACLE Racing since 2002. Technology and skills have transferred freely between the automaker and sailing team, most notably in the fields of structural engineering and high-modulus composite construction. The result was celebrated in the February when the yacht USA 17, the fastest yacht in the history of the America’s Cup, won the 33rd Match with a resounding 2:0 victory off Valencia, Spain.

"On the design and engineering front, BMW engineers set new benchmarks in terms of intelligent lightweight design," said Ralf Hussmann, General Manager BMW Sports Marketing and Brand Cooperation. "In winning the 33rd America’s Cup, we achieved all of our ambitious goals. We will continue to be involved in the sport on a national level."

"The America’s Cup combines a technological challenge with a sporting one and success is measured by the result on the race course,” added Russell Coutts CEO of BMW ORACLE Racing.

(image) No more BMW in BMW Oracle Racing as of January 1st, 2011. Photo copyright Gilles Martin-Raget

Australian Syndicate Submits Notice of Challenge for the America's Cup

Thu, 23 Dec 2010 08:14:00 +0000

[Source: YuuZoo Big Boat Racing Team] Today a Syndicate of Australians including legendary yachtsman Ludde Ingvall, skipper of the YuuZoo Big Boat Racing Team, has submitted a Notice of Challenge to the defending Golden Gate Yacht Club of San Francisco. The Syndicate aims to bring together nationwide resources and skills in a true people's challenge. Lodging the application reserves a place for Australia to return to competition for the world's oldest international sporting trophy.Ludde Ingvall: "Excellence in youth sailing is my objective. We want to bring home the many talented Australians sailing for other countries and give them a chance to compete for their country. We want to create a legacy for future generations, something to aspire to, a reason for any Australian youngster to get out there and take part in our wonderful sport of sailing at all levels."Project manager Dario Valenza: "Bringing an event to Australia would rival Oprah's visit in tourism value as well as boosting Australia's marine industry."Ludde Ingvall, skipper of YuuZoo at the 2009 Rolex Sydney Hobart Race. Photo copyright ROLEX / Kurt ArrigoSyndicate member and multi hull expert Peter Baker: "Australia has been the challenger at seven and the defender at one of the 33 America's Cup events so far and has sought to challenge on three other occasions. Australia has provided America's Cup teams worldwide with more members than any other nation in modern times. We want to bring them home. The last America's Cup was won for the USA by an Australian skipper on a boat designed by an Australian racing against another boat designed by an Australian for a Swiss team. Yet Australia has been out of the game for 13 years."YuuZoo Co Founder Ron Creevey says: "We are delighted and excited about partnering with the Big Boat Racing Team to work on the feasibility for the Australian America's Cup entry. Personally I would like to call on other Australian corporations and individuals to get behind the idea and bring the America's Cup back to Australia. We have watched the cream of Australian talent such as James Spithill and Adam Beashel compete for many countries over the past 20 years and it will be extremely satisfying for YuuZoo to be involved by providing the platform for talented Australians to represent our country.""The best sailors on the fastest boats" - The F1 of sailing. This is the new format America's Cup: a level playing field where giant, faster than the wind, 22 metre catamarans powered by 40 metre rigid wings fly on the edge of control with one hull in the water and the other metres above. The furious action takes place in locations across the globe including Australia. On courses which are chosen as natural amphitheatres, close to shore where spectators can almost reach out and touch the amazing machines dueling in short races in rapid succession.An independently managed, ongoing Annual World Tour is planned and part of the Syndicate's strategy is to stage events in Australia.YuuZoo racing at the 2009 Rolex Sydney Hobart Race. Photo copyright ROLEX / Kurt ArrigoThe new boats will test strength and finesse, require nerves of steel and super fast reflexes. Skills required in all sailing but honed to perfection in the giant AC72 yachts. The new Australian Syndicate wants to bring AC Supporters together in giving young, talented Australian sailors the chance to step up and shine on the world stage.Ludde Ingvall: "We want to get everyone working together to make possible a true people's challenge for the benefit of all Australians. The new format America's Cup is a once in a lifetime chance to jump to the front of a sporting and technological revolution. Being part of the America's Cup also means bringing races to Australia, fantastic for tourism and the chance for Australian fans to see their team in acti[...]

Valencia Sailing comes to an end and moves ahead

Wed, 22 Dec 2010 15:24:00 +0000

Dear friends & readers,After nearly six years online, the Valencia Sailing blog is about to sign off. I started it in March 2005 as a test to see whether anyone would be interested in having weekly updates from the construction of the America's Cup Port in Valencia and the activities of the teams and, I hope, it now has reached a point where it became a reliable source of daily sailing news from around the world. Well, it is now time to close this chapter and move ahead.To start with, the name of the site doesn't make any sense any longer. As you most probably have seen from my photos on Monday, BMW Oracle is definitely leaving its Valencia base in a week and Valencia will cease to have the importance it once had in the sport of sailing. It will in fact become just like any other Mediterranean city, most probably holding one or two main regattas each summer. Even if the city goes ahead with its plan to tear down most of the bases, the infrastructure in place will make it easy to host an RC44 or AUDI Medcup event. However, this will never come close, even remotely, to holding two consecutive America's Cups.I took this opportunity to make some radical changes. First of all, Valencia Sailing will change its name. I still haven't decided and I have a handful of names in mind but all of them will be redirected to the final name. Most probably, the new website will be called, the site will no longer be a blog. It will move to a "normal" news website format will all the bells and whistles you would expect from it. In fact there is a demo already online and I would appreciate if you checked it and gave any kind of feedback you thought appropriate. It's not yet the final version but it won't be radically different.Click here for a preview of the new versionNews SectionsAs you can see from the demo website, there is a new navigation bar that has all the news separated in sections. The broader categories will have sub categories, for example the offshore category is divided into the Barcelona World Race, Vendée Globe etc. The America's Cup category is divided in three subcategories (32nd, 33rd, 34th) and most probably the 34th America's Cup will further be divided to news according to each team. The same will apply to the Volvo Ocean Race. As a result, if your interest is just the news on Artemis in this edition of the Cup, you can have a dedicated page.Featured NewsRight under the navigation menu, you have the 5 latest Featured News, the 5 most important news but not necessarily the latest. For example, when BMW Oracle announce the venue of the 34th America's Cup, such an important information could remain in the featured news section for one or two days.Latest NewsRight beneath the Featured News you have the Latest News, providing the latest 6 articles, in strict chronological order. Recent VideosThis is a brand new section and I hope it will be an easy and practical way to have the latest 5 videos right in front of you without the need to leave the front page. All you have to do is click on the title of the video and it will automatically switch.AdvertizingOne of the reasons that also made the change necessary were the inherent limitations in advertizing placements of the blog format. The new website now offers new technologies for advertizing campaigns that can have a great impact such as the ones Gillette and Braun are using in various major websites. Send us an email to learn how you can take advantage of the new technologies.Transition periodPlease bear for a week until the new site is fully functional. My aim is to switch it on the eve of the Barcelona World Race start, on December 30.[...]

World Match Racing Tour Looks Ahead After a Stellar 2010 Season

Tue, 21 Dec 2010 18:57:00 +0000

[Source: World Match Racing Tour] Since the curtain came down on the 2010 edition of the World Match Racing Tour (WMRT) in the most emphatic fashion - on the final day of the final event - the sailing world has been reflecting on a season when the Tour made the headlines both on and off the water, having also made a succession of exciting announcements that will define the future of the series.

On the water, the script could not have been given a more thrilling twist. Having led the Tour standings all season, Mathieu Richard (FRA) French Match Racing Team arrived at the Monsoon Cup in Malaysia as one of an unprecedented five skippers still in with a chance of winning the World Championship. However, in what proved to be TEAMORIGIN’s bow from the world of match racing for the foreseeable future, it was Ben Ainslie (GBR) who rallied his crew to reach the final against Torvar Mirsky (AUS) Mirsky Racing Team.

It was a final that went down to the wire however the experience of the triple Olympic gold medalist proved too much as Ainslie took the Monsoon Cup and with it, the ISAF Match Racing World Championship. Reflecting on his achievement, the Brit said: “We’ve enjoyed being on the Tour an incredible amount – for the whole team this victory has been massive for us.”

Ainslie’s win and the Monsoon Cup as a whole was a fitting finale to a season that had seen so many epic battles out on the water. Asked what his verdict was on the final event, Jerome Pels, Secretary General of ISAF gave his unequivocal endorsement: “If you want to see how to run a sailing event you should come to the Monsoon Cup.”

Off the water, the bidding process for new host venues and the boat design competition are both moving forward in earnest as the Tour strengthens its preeminent position on the world’s sailing scene. The closing date for the boat design competition is January 31 2011. After this, submissions will be scrutinized by the design committee of Peter Gilmour (President of WMRT), Jim O’Toole (CEO of WMRT), Craig Mitchell (Tour Director), Terry Newby (Regatta International) and three professional sailors. The committee will then meet in London, with short-listed designers invited to make presentations. Winners will be announced on 14 February 2011.

Meanwhile, bids for host venues for the 2012 season will close on 28 February 2011 to enable the Tour to have the 2012 schedule locked into place by the end of May 2011. Commenting on the level of interest, Jim O’Toole, CEO of World Match Racing Tour said: “We have been delighted by the overwhelming response to both the venue bidding process and the design competition. After more than 50 expressions of interest, and the signing of many NDAs, a number of venues are putting serious bids together.”

Attention will next turn to the first event of the 2011 season, Match Race France. In 2010, Richard defeated Ainslie 2-0 in the final – a win the Frenchman will be keen to repeat on his home waters. However, a momentary glance over his shoulder and he will see a legion of match racers in the ilk of Torvar Mirsky (AUS) Mirsky Racing Team in hot pursuit.

BMW Oracle officials "very serious" in intent to move forward with Rhode Island

Tue, 21 Dec 2010 07:37:00 +0000

Related documents
- Letter from Stephen Barclay, COO of BMW Oracle, to Keith Stokes, Executive Director of the RI Economic Development Corporation, dated December 17th, 2010

Yacht Road, San Francisco, California USA 94123

December 17, 2010

Mr. Keith Stokes
Executive Director
Rhode Island Economic Development Corp.
Suite 101, 315 Iron Horse Way
Providence, R.I. 02908

Dear Keith,

I would like to thank you for meeting with our team over the past week and, in particular, arranging the meetings yesterday with Governor-elect Chafee and Senate President Paiva-Weed.

Over the past week, you have clearly presented why Rhode Island, and Fort Adams State Park, in particular, has the capability to host the 34th America's Cup, an event that is one of the largest sporting events in the world in terms of economic benefit and mass media audience. In particular, we are impressed with Fort Adams and the possibility of its being the center of public access, use and enjoyment of Narragansett Bay.

We are very serious in our intent to move forward with Rhode Island. There is much to do to meet the timeframes we have set. The Golden Gate Yacht Club has committed to other America's Cup teams that a host city will be announced by December 31, 2010.

On our side we must establish the how the teams, visitors and VIPs will be accommodated and how we will raise the necessary corporate sponsorship. You can greatly assist us by advising on the readiness of Fort Adams to complete the necessary public infrastructure improvements to base the teams and hold the event within the timeframes we have discussed with you and your team.

To demonstrate our interest in working with Rhode Island, I have asked Tom Ehman, a fellow member of the GGYC Board and America's Cup Committee, and head of External Affairs for BMW ORACLE Racing, to attend next Monday's Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation's December board meeting to convey our interest to your Board and the Governor.

I look forward to our continued dialogue over the next several days.

Yours sincerely,

Stephen Barclay
GGYC Board and America's Cup Committee

Light breeze on day 3 of the Christmas Race

Mon, 20 Dec 2010 20:53:00 +0000

A light SW breeze blew in the bay of Palamos since the early morning with enough strength to get sailors to the racing areas for today’s races. After waiting for two days for the wind to arrive, the Race Committee did not hesitate to go afloat just after the forecast briefing to ensure racing could start in accordance with the schedule. The first starts of the day were made at around 11:30 but the wind was tricky throughout the day.The Laser could finally sail three races today and Spanish sisters Fatima and Lucia Reyes are first and second in the Laser radial overall results with a great performance today. Third place is for Francesca Clapchich from Italy.Brothers Federico and Arturo Alonso from Spain are leaders in the 49er standings with a total of seven races sailed since the beginning of the event. Second place is for Portuguese team Bernardo Freitas and Francisco Andrade (Buondi Caffè) followed by James Peters and Edward Fitzgerald (Ocenair) from Great Britain.The lead in 470 women is still for Spanish team Tara Pacheco and Berta followed by British sailors Hannah Mills and Katie Archer and SophieWequelin and Sophie Ainsworth (Grainmarket properties) in second and third place respectively. Start of the 49er race. Palamós, 20 December 2010. Photo copyright Alfred Farré / Christmas RaceGerman sailors Jasper Wagner and Tobias Bolduan are at the top of the 470 men standings with 11 points advantage over British team Ben Saxton and David Kohler (Rola-Trac). Third place is also for Germany, with team Denny Naujock y Nils Schröder (Jonny).Finn sailor Florian Raudaschl from Austria is now leading the Finn results followed by Ukranian sailor Olexiy Boryson, at just two points and third place is for Jan Kurfed (Audi STG) from Germany. The Dutch teams dominate the Laser standard results with Sierk Jan ter Haar and Douwe Broekens (Sigma Medic) in the lead with nineteen points. Third place is for French sailor Rodrigue Cabaz. Tomorrow will be the last day of racing before the Medal Race to be held on Wednesday. The weather forecast announces SW wind 15 to 20 knots with possibility of rain at midday. RESULTS (After the third day)Laser Radial1. Fátima Reyes (ESP), 4-2-1-3, 10 points2. Fatima Reyes (ESP), 3-4-6-2, 15 points3. Francesca Clapchich (ITA), 2-1-8-5, 16 points4. Michelle Broekhizen (NED), 10-5-4-1, 20 points5. Marie Menaldo (FRA), 1-6-7-6, 20 pointsLaser Standard1. Sierk Jan Ter Haar (NED), 1-4-2-12, 19 points2. Broekens (NED), 2-1-11-5, 19 puntos3. Rodrige Cabaz (FRA), 5-19-6-1, 31 puntos4. Ronan Cull (IRL), 13-13-5-4, 35 puntos5. Mattis Naud (FRA), 4-17-4-13, 38 puntosFinn1. Florian Raudaschi (AUT), 2-5-3-1, 11 points2. Olexsiy Borysov (UKR), 5-3-2-3, 13 points3. Jan Kurfeld (GER), 3-1-1-DNC, 16 points4. Alex Muscat (ESP), 9-2-4-2, 17 points5. Miguel Fernández Vasco (ESP), 6-4-5-6, 21 points470 Men1. Jasper Wagner/Tobias Bolduan (GER), 2-1-5-3, 11 points2. Ben Saxton/David Kohler (GBR), 12-8-1-1, 22 points3. Denny Noujock/Nils Schröder (GER), 17-2-2-2, 23 points4. Niklas Dackhammar/Fredrik Bergstrom (SWE), 10-3-15-8, 36 points5. Marc Terrasa/Toni Terrasa (ESP), 5-4-18-9, 37 points470 Women1. Tara Pacheco/Berta Betanzos (ESP), 1-3-1-6, 11 points2. Hanna Mills/Katie Archer (GBR), 4-5-2-2, 13 points3. Sophie Weguelin/Sophie Ainsworth (GBR), 2-2-5-4, 13 points4. Marjalilsa Umb/Elise Umb (EST), 5-1-6-3, 15 points5. Marina Gallego/Ana Lobo (ESP), 3-6-7-5, 21 points49er1. Federico Alonso/Arturo Alonso (ESP), 4-1-1-(6)-3-6-2, 17 points2. Bernardo Freitas/Francisco Andrade (POR), 2-5-6-(BDF)-2-4-1, 20 points3. James Peters/Edward Fitzgerald (GBR), (16)-6-3-3-1-3-6, 22 points4. Mathieu Frei/Yann Rocherieux (FRA), 3-7-2-1-(13)-8-5, 26 points5.[...]

Adios Valencia...

Mon, 20 Dec 2010 13:02:00 +0000

I never had the slightest doubt this would be taking place, I only thought it would have been in 2011 instead of 2010. As one can observe from the photo, I'm referring to BMW Oracle, the America's Cup defender, permanently leaving its base in Valencia. After more than 5 years in the Spanish city, the holders of the world's oldest sports trophy are packing up in order to leave by January 1st, 2011. When Valencia Sailing visited the base earlier on Monday morning, the most visible sign was the crew stripping the base of any BMW Oracle branding, starting with the giant poster of USA17.

The personnel will only be working a couple of days this week and then definitely leave, handing the base to the crews that will dismantle it. Although this information has not been confirmed, we understand BMW Oracle will be based in Auckland for the next few months.

An era ends now in the America's Cup. After seven years and one month, Valencia ceases to be the "world's sailing capital" and another city will take over. However, with only eleven days left until their deadline, of which 4 are holidays, BMW Oracle would rather hurry up and announce the venue of the 34th America's Cup.

(image) Crews striping all BMW Oracle branding from the base. Valencia, 20 December 2010. Photo copyright Pierre Orphanidis / Valencia Sailing

Valencia Sailing talks to Kevin Reed, head of Canada's America's Cup drive

Sun, 19 Dec 2010 19:55:00 +0000

The last time Canada was present in the America's Cup was in Fremantle in 1987 when a combined project from Secret Cove Yacht Club and Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron challenged the Defender from the Royal Perth Yacht Club and got eliminated in the Louis Vuitton Cup round robin.Fast forward nearly a quarter of a century and it now seems possible that the world's second largest country by area could be once again represented in the competition for the world's oldest sports trophy. Red Maple Racing, led by Toronto financier Kevin Reed, is the project that embodies Canada's drive in the America's Cup. Valencia Sailing talked to Reed about the background, current sate and future of the project.Valencia Sailing: Let's start with a brief background on the project. What made you try to form an America's Cup challenge?Kevin Reed: I've certainly been a fan of the America's Cup for perhaps three decades and it's something Canada hasn't had an entry in since 1987. In the last 5-6 years I have been speaking with Paul Henderson, a former ISAF President, about an entry for Canada. All these years, both personally and through the companies I own, I have sponsored many Canadian Olympic athletes, including Canadian Olympic sailors. With the new format America's Cup Race Management and America's Cup Event Authority have prepared it has certainly become very attractive now for Canada to take a look at this. The economics of the old model or at least the last 10-15 years was restrictive but now, Russell Coutts and his team have done a tremendous job transforming it into a business like Formula 1 or other professional sports. Valencia Sailing: From what I understand, you claim the changes brought by Russell Coutts made the cup interesting for you. Does that mean that the 32nd America's Cup in Valencia or the ones before in Auckland were not interesting from a Canadian perspective?Kevin Reed: Although very exciting as a fan, it was very prohibitive on the financial side, from a Canadian perspective. I was at the 2007 Cup in Valencia and it was very exciting, a great event and certainly of interest but the new format has allowed us to set up a committee to examine this. We hope to take a decision in the next 45 days if we are going ahead with the challenge but right now with the new format we are very optimistic we should be able to do something for Canada. Valencia Sailing: At what stage of preparation is the project right now? Will you personally fund it or will you have other backers as well, whether private individuals or companies?Kevin Reed: In the next 45 days we'll be looking at a few things. One of them is the financing mechanisms. Can we put them in place so that the project is financed not only by me but also Canadian companies that want to sponsor us? In the next area, we believe there is enough Canadian talent to put together an all-Canadian sailing team. Another area we are looking into is the design and build team and again we believe the talent is here. So, we have three things Paul Henderson, myself and the rest of the team are looking at: The financing mechanisms, the sailing and the design and build teams and we are trying to be all-Canadian in all three areas, as much as we can.Valencia Sailing: Do you believe you can be competitive with a solely Canadian team?Kevin Reed: We certainly believe we have the talent pool to do that. There is a number of Canadians that have been involved in previous America's Cups as well as other major sailing events and we are convinced this talent pool is right here in Canada. Valencia Sailing: Let's get back to the issue of costs. In a recent article in the [...]

No wind, no race on day two of the Christmas Race

Sun, 19 Dec 2010 18:29:00 +0000

The wind decided not to appear on day two at the Christmas Race so there was no racing today. The day started with rain and around midday the clouds began to disappear and a SSW breeze was expected to start blowing in the bay. But it did not happen and after five hours ashore, teams went home with no races sailed.

Some sailors had fun playing football while others sat at Palamos pier waiting for the wind.

Carles Palomares, the race manager explained “we tried everyhting possible, even the Race Committees went afloat but there was hardly any wind so it was impossible to give a start to any race".

There have been no changes in the results from day one. Meteorologist Enric Agud has forecasted a SW wind around 10 knots at midday increasing to fifiteen throughout the afternoon.

Shifty winds mark opening day of Christmas Race in Palamós

Sat, 18 Dec 2010 20:50:00 +0000

[Source: Christmas Race] Day one in Palamos woke up with clouds and grey skies with SSE winds forecasted to start blowing from midday. A calm morning with no wind left all sailors ashore. Shyly, the sun peeped through the clouds around midday and the wind seemed to start making its way through. The Race Committee decided to send the Laser and Laser radial fleet to the racing area but as soon as the decision was made the Race Committee reported that the wind had dropped again and all classes were again postponed ashore. It wasn't until 14:00 hrs that a sudden shifty 160-170 wind, 5 to 6 knots took the bay of Palamos by surprise and racing began.

The first to sail out was the 49er fleet that was followed by all other classes. The changeable wind conditions put the Race Committee to the test and finally only the 49ers, 470 and Finn managed to sail today. In Charlie area the Laser standard and radial started race one but it had to be abandoned shortly after the start due to an important wind shift and the fleet was sent ashore. After 2 races in the 49er, GBR team Richard Mason and Tom Partington take the lead followed by Bernardo Freitas and Francisco Andrade from Portugal and French sailors Mathieu Frei and Yann Rocherieux.

In Bravo area, the 470 men and women and Finn completed only one race. After finishing second at the 2010 Skandia Sail for Gold regatta last August, 470 women Spanish sailors Tara Pacheco and Berta Betanzos had an excellent start of the event winning today’s race. Second place was for British team Sophie Weguelin and Sophie Ainsworth who have finished second overall at the 2008 and 2009 editions of the Christmas race. Spanish team Marina Gallego and Ana Lobo were third. Swedish team Victor Bergström and Marcus Dackhammar won today’s race in the 470 men, followed by Jasper Wagner and Tobias Bolduan from Germany who have just arrived from a victory at the Imperia Winter regatta. Third place was for French sailors Louis Moysan and Baptiste Berthier.

Win for Andrii Gusenko from Ukraine in the Finn class and second place for Austrian sailor Florian Raudaschl from Austria who won the International Finn Cup in Malcesine last October. Third place was for Jan Kurfeld from Germany.

Tomorrow is expected to start cloudy again, with some drizzles and NW wind, 4 to 7 knots in the morning changing to SSW wind 6 to 12 knots from midday.


Work on AC45 catamarans moving ahead in New Zealand

Sat, 18 Dec 2010 16:08:00 +0000

[Source: America's Cup] Work on the AC45 catamarans, which the Cup teams will use to race in the 2011 America’s Cup World Series events, is continuing at pace in Warkworth, New Zealand.Dubbed the ‘little sister with attitude’ in comparison to the enormous AC72 cats the teams will race in the Louis Vuitton Cup and America’s Cup, the first AC45 is scheduled to be launched in the new year, with others rolling off the assembly quickly thereafter. Entered competitors will have a chance to participate in sea trials following the initial launch.After the 2011 season, the AC45s will be used in the Youth America’s Cup series, developing the next generation of Cup sailors.Construction of the first AC45 catamaran. Warkworth, 17 December 2010. Photo copyright Ivor Wilkins / America's CupConstruction of the first AC45 catamaran. Warkworth, 17 December 2010. Photo copyright Ivor Wilkins / America's CupConstruction of the first AC45 catamaran. Warkworth, 17 December 2010. Photo copyright Ivor Wilkins / America's CupConstruction of the first AC45 catamaran. Warkworth, 17 December 2010. Photo copyright Ivor Wilkins / America's CupConstruction of the first AC45 catamaran. Warkworth, 17 December 2010. Photo copyright Ivor Wilkins / America's CupConstruction of the first AC45 catamaran. Warkworth, 17 December 2010. Photo copyright Ivor Wilkins / America's CupConstruction of the first AC45 catamaran. Warkworth, 17 December 2010. Photo copyright Ivor Wilkins / America's Cup[...]

Exciting finishes and upsets in Sail Melbourne medal races

Sat, 18 Dec 2010 15:48:00 +0000

[Source: Sail Melbourne] The opening round of the ISAF Sailing World Cup, Sail Melbourne, has come to an end with close finishes and a number of upsets on the final day of racing.The best laid plans went astray for the New Zealand 49er crew of Peter Burling and Blair Tuke. They took a three point lead over Delle Nico and Nickolaus Resche into the double-points medal race, meaning the Austrians had to beat them by at least two places to win the gold medal.The New Zealanders put their rivals into trouble early, forcing them into a pre-start infringement and the consequent 720 penalty turn. This pushed the Austrians to the right hand side of the course and with the wind tracking left, that appeared to be the unfavoured side. If they had any ideas of coming back onto starboard, those hopes were dashed when the Australians, Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen nailed the start and forced them further to the right. Meanwhile, the Kiwis had decided that the extreme left was the place to be.From nowhere, a big right-hand shift came down the course, the Austrians lifted and the race was effectively over. Outteridge and Jensen came back later in the race to finish 4th, but the Kiwis, furiously “going troppo” in the hope of a favourable shift, finished ninth.“It was a really tough race,” Nickolaus Resche said. “We had a small incident with the Kiwis and then we were lucky to get a good right shift. Then we just had to stay in the fleet. We are really happy that we won.”The Kiwis, though obviously disappointed, finished in second place in the regatta. “We had to play catch up the whole race,” said Peter Burling. “Everything we did didn't work. We'll learn from it though.”Nathan Outteridge reported that the wind shifts were swinging through 55 degrees at various times during the race.Highlights from the closing day of Sail Melbourne. Melbourne, 18 December 2010. Video copyright Sail MelbourneThe second class away was the Finn, the heavyweight dinghy that features the big men of sailing, and triple Olympic Gold medalist and current World Match Racing champion Ben Ainslie was the one to beat. Ainslie went into the medal race six points ahead of compatriot Giles Scott who in turn was one point clear of Ed Wright. Frenchmen Jonathan Lobert and Thomas Le Breton and American Zach Railey could technically still win, but a British victory was much more likely.Dutchman Pieter Postma upset the British party by leaping to an early lead. As the British covered each other, Postma raced away to an easy win. However, this was all about final points and the master strategist Ben Ainslie had it under control.“Ed was going right and Giles was going left,” said Ainslie. He had to choose: “I went with Giles. It (the wind) was slowly clocking left but there was a big right hand shift which lifted Ed.”Wright, the World Champion, took advantage of the lift to finish second, ahead of Scott and Ainslie. This allowed him to leapfrog Scott in the overall standings, leaving Great Britain with all three podium positions.The 470 crews were made to work for their medals. After a postponement, the first race was called off during the second lap, with World Champions Mat Belcher and Mal Page leading by a considerable margin.Belcher and Page went into the race in third place overall, but only two points off first. Among the top three whoever finished in front would win.After the restart, it appeared that Belcher and Page were to be dealt a cruel blow. They went right while the Americans went left, and a h[...]

Barcelona and the media bids 'Bienvenidos' to the skippers

Fri, 17 Dec 2010 19:13:00 +0000

[Source: Barcelona World Race] The Barcelona World Race skippers lined up today for the first obligatory press conference with the sailors taking part in an official photo call before informal media interviews. With less than two weeks to go before the start on 31st December the co-skippers answered questions on their preparations for the race to almost 100 invited key media from nine different countries.For some, such as 2007-8 race winner Jean Pierre Dick (FRA), Alex Thomson (GBR) and Pachi Rivero (ESP) – the sole Spanish skipper to be looking forward to competing in his second Barcelona World Race, and even Loïck Peyron who was here 10 years ago for the start of The Race – it was a chance to meet up with old friends and colleagues, enjoying the pre-start buzz and hubbub on their respective returns to Barcelona, while others have been familiarising themselves with the impressive Race Fleet Dock, and the massive 4500 sq metre Moll Barcelona World Race Expo for the first time.Everyone loves their local heroes and almost inevitably the longest queues of media lined up to speak with the strong contingent of skippers who have grown up, or live permanently in Barcelona such diminutive Anna Corbella, who will set sail with Dee Caffari on GAES Centros Auditivos in the prospect of becoming the first Spanish woman to sail non stop around the world, Alex Pella and Pepe Ribes on Estrella Damm, Jaume Mumbru who sails with long time Barcelona friend Cali Sanmarti on We Are Water, and eminent cardiologist Bruno Garcia who partners French skipper Jean Le Cam on President and Gerard Marin on FMC.The Barcelona World Race skippers Dominique Wavre (SUI) and Michèle Paret (FRA), another duo who are making their return to the Barcelona World Race, will tomorrow celebrate their new partnership with Mirabaud with the boat’s official christening.Immediately adjacent to the IMOCA Race Fleet Dock, is the huge Moll Barcelona World Race Expo which will be opened at 1300hrs tomorrow, Saturday 18th December, by the Mayor of Barcelona, Jordi Hereu. The mayor will meet the skippers and present them with their symbolic mooring lines, signifying the strong bond between them and the Catalan capital city, their Barcelona World Race flags. It will be the first time for the public to meet the skippers. Quotes:Pepe Ribes (ESP), Estrella Damm: “We look at this round the world race with a lot of humility, because there are four almost new boats, and the best skippers in the history of IMOCA class, but we also have great ambitions to do our best, and we want to be competitive.”Dee Caffari (GBR), Gaes Centros Auditivos: “I’m feeling good, feeling like we have done what I wanted to achieve, that is have all the stuff to do with the boat, has been dealt with. We are ready to go. And for Anna, all of this is quite new to her, so when the race village opens and we have all the other requirements of being a skipper, she can just be concentrating on that and not worried about the boat. The shore team seem calm and happy, which always gives me confidence.”Alex Thomson (GBR), Hugo Boss: “The race is a much bigger deal than before, with more competitors and a higher standard, and it’s good to be back. We’ve had more time to prepare - last time we sailed 2,500 miles before the start, this time it’s been 15,000. We’ve had the boat in the water for a much longer time, done two Transatlantics, been to the Mediterranean twice, and been all the way through our process of breaking and f[...]

Video update from the Camper build shed in Auckland

Thu, 16 Dec 2010 08:36:00 +0000

Chris Nicholson, skipper of the Camper Volvo Ocean Race campaign, gives us an update on the construction of his team's VO70 yacht in Auckland.

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Chris Nicholson talks about the build of Camper's VO70 yacht. Auckland, 14 December 2010. Video copyright Camper

PUMA Volvo 70 - il mostro - For sale!

Wed, 15 Dec 2010 23:08:00 +0000

PUMA's il mostro finished 2nd in the 2008-2009 Volvo Ocean Race. Since this amazing feat, the boat has steadily been updated while being used as a training platform for PUMA Ocean Racing during the summer of 2010. During that summer il mostro placed 2nd in the Newport-Bermuda Race under ORR. il mostro also has a IRC rating but has never raced offshore under this rule.

il mostro is the perfect platform for a team wishing to put together a late Volvo Ocean Race entry for the 2011 Race, or for a racing owner who wishes to compete in any type of offshore racing both under handicap and as a course record breaker.

If you are interested in buying it, all you have to do is click on the banner on the left-hand side column of our website!!

(image) 70' Goetz Custom Boats Volvo 70
Basic Information
* Year: 2008
* Located In Newport, RI
* Hull Material: Composite
* Engine/Fuel Type: Single Diesel

* Builder: Goetz Custom Boats
* Designer: Botin/Carkeek

* LOA: 70'
* Beam: 18'
* Maximum Draft: 15'
* Displacement: 30,000lbs

* Engine Brand: Volvo
* Engine(s) HP: 75
* Engine Model: D2-75

Included with purchase
* (3) Spare daggerboards
* (3) Spare rudders
* Southern Spars mast and boom
* Southern Spars mast and Boom (race spare)
* Complete inventory of VOR North sails + many more usable sails
* 2 Cradles
* Spare keel ram
* Full saftey equipment inventory
* Spare bow sprit

This is who I am - Chris Nicholson

Wed, 15 Dec 2010 18:31:00 +0000

One issue that was mentioned and repeated by almost every panelist, during the two full days of the World Yacht Racing Forum, was that the sport of sailing needs to put into evidence its characters and personalities. Well here's a nice video from the Volvo Ocean Race doing just that. Chris Nicholson, skipper of the Camper VOR race, talks about himself while Grant Dalton tells us how he first spotted him ten years ago.

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