• Mest kända kappseglare just nu?

    Veckans läsarfråga. Bruttolista först, sedan omröstning.

    Kör det som läsarfråga. Mest kända just nu. Inga gamla stötar, bara mest känd oavsett resultat.

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  • Välkommen ombord… Edmond de Rothschild

    In three days, at exactly 13:00 GMT, the Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe fleet will set sail from offshore Saint Malo. The race start is approaching then and the weather patterns are taking shape. Indeed, this 2018 edition is revealing her true colours a little more each day and some 72 hours before the one hundred and twenty-three solo sailors take off, the latest forecasts are indicating a tough introduction to the race after a quick but rainy start off Cap Fréhel. Competing in the Ultime category, at the helm of the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild, Sébastien Josse is gradually getting into race mode. On the dock in Saint Malo, the giants are grabbing the attention, impressing the crowds by their massive dimensions, so this is the perfect opportunity to unveil a little more about life aboard these carbon monsters and the physical commitment they require of a solo sailor.

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  • Rolex Middle Sea Race 2018 | filmen

    A record breaking fleet embarked on the 50th anniversary Rolex Middle Sea Race with the dedication, perseverance and spirit which has come to define this famous international offshore race throughout the past five decades. 130 yachts representing 29 countries, uniting seasoned campaigners, intrepid first timers and those drawn back to Malta after decade long absences. Motivation charged by the prospect of being part of a unique edition of the race.

    The Rolex Middle Sea Race, organised by the Royal Malta Yacht Club, was founded in 1968 principally to provide local Corinthian sailors with more challenging opportunities to sail in the Mediterranean winter. From that humble ideal fifty years ago, today stands an international event of significant stature. Rolex, marking its six decade long association with yachting this year, has been Title Sponsor since 2002. This partnership between club and watch brand has coincided with the race’s resurgence over the past fifteen years.

    The main prizes
    One statistic not threatened this year was the 11-year old race record. However, in claiming a fourth straight monohull line honours success, and a fifth overall, American George David is now that specific award’s most decorated skipper. Even the fastest multihull, Maserati Multi 70, skippered by Giovanni Soldini, was unable to surpass the increasingly resilient time of 47 hours, 55 minutes and 3 seconds set by David’s previous Rambler in 2007. Overall victory on IRC handicap belonged to Géry Trenteseaux’s JPK 11.80 Courrier Recommandé from France. The very same Trentesaux who three years ago prevailed from a fleet of 356 yachts to claim the 2015 Rolex Fastnet Race.

    Time for reflection
    How fitting that a French skipper triumphed in the race’s golden anniversary. After all, it was a Frenchman, Albert Debarge, who in 1968 offered his friend John Ripard Snr the opportunity to choose a yacht to sail the inaugural race. A race, Ripard, a renowned local sailor, would go on to win.

    “His only condition was that the boat’s name had to be Josian, which was his wife’s name,” recalled Ripard who opted to commission a design from a then emerging boat builder, Nautor’s Swan.

    Naturally the pageantry tied to this year’s race provided an opportunity for the likes of Ripard Snr to reminisce on the first edition of the contest. A race contested by eight yachts, conceived in the summer of that year, and which took almost every available hour between then and the start to ensure the race could take place.

    Alan Green, a British sailor living in Malta in the late 1960s, one of the race’s co-founders, was invited to be part of this year’s celebrations. “Seeing 130 boats today is a dream come true,” he observed at one of the many special events organised for this year’s celebrations. “When we started this race I was in no doubt that the formula was right. In one of the first press releases I wrote in 1968, and perhaps owing to the impetuous nature of youth, we already gave the race the title ‘a classic’. This is a title it richly deserves today.”

    By the time that first race came around, the toll of organising and promoting the event, involving some 50 different bodies, had squeezed almost all of Green’s energy. Following the race start on 30 November 1968, Green, who insisted upon taking part, recalls sleeping for much of the first 200-nautical miles. Once rested he helped drive Sandettie to third place overall. Ripard, approaching his 90th birthday, reflects on how times have changed: “When you go off on a race today, you can press a button and know exactly where you are, how fast you are going, what the course is exactly. In those days it was a question of monitoring and logging your move every half an hour or so. Your course, your calculated speed. The difference between then and now is astronomical.”

    Splendid racecourse
    What remains true of the first race and today’s is the wild beauty of the racecourse. Originally a clockwise route around Sicily, today it is a 606-nm anticlockwise passage that still takes in scenic and tactical junctures like the Strait of Messina, Etna, the volcanic island of Stromboli, the rugged Aeolian and Egadi islands, beginning and finishing off Valletta, the 2018 European Capital of Culture.

    “The racecourse is the most scenic in the world. It has got a lot of history and has very variable wind conditions. It can be heavy, it can be light,” added George David whose crew on the 88-ft Maxi Rambler return each year to Malta not only for the charm of the racecourse but with a single-minded mission. “We come back every year because when the race record is broken again we want to make sure it’s us who break it.”

    A small boat race
    On the dawn of the race start though, David was already aware that setting a new fastest finish time was highly unlikely. An arduous passage from Capo Passero towards the Strait of Messina during the first evening and night allied those concerns. Although Rambler and the frontrunners picked up speed following the rounding of Stromboli, she finished in the early hours of Tuesday morning over 14 hours outside of the race benchmark. Proud of setting a record number of line honours victories on arrival in Grand Harbour, Valletta, David was immediately briefing his crew that they would be back to try again in 2019.

    As the frontrunners continued to arrive in Valletta during the race’s third evening, it became evident that this was not going to be a big boat race. What followed was a procession of yachts crossing the finish line in Malta and assuming temporary leadership of the race. Momo, Endlessgame, Tonnerre de Glen, all at one stage could dream of success. Then on the fourth afternoon of the race, Trentesaux’s yacht, launched earlier this year, picked up pace down the west coast of Sicily. Her times at the islands of Pantelleria and Lampedusa suggested she needed to be taken seriously. And on arriving in Malta, Courrier Recommandé assumed leadership of the race. The scene was set for a French boat to win the race for the third time – following Antares in 1981 and Spirit of Ad Hoc in 2008.

    Making 600-nm history
    Trentesaux’s success is not born from an in-depth knowledge of the course – he has only taken part in the race once before, in 1982 as a 23-year old who had just completed his military service. Rather it is a triumph fuelled by a passion for offshore sailing and as he identifies: “A very strong team, a good boat, a great crew and good sails.” Following the Rolex Fastnet, Trentesaux retired from offshore racing, ‘an addiction’ he was able to contain for only three years. “I love the atmosphere of offshore racing and I couldn’t resist coming back to the Rolex Middle Sea Race this year.” Amongst Trentesaux’s all French crew was another former Rolex Fastnet winner. Alexis Loison who made history in 2013 when, with his father Pascal, they became the race’s first-ever double-handed winners.

    “This is a magnificent, beautiful race course. We had a lot of wind during the last 24 hours of the race, 15 of which were really challenging,” explained Trentesaux on arrival. Perhaps though the key moment came when the yacht broached off Pantelleria. Trentesaux, the skipper, leader and most experienced member of the crew, assumed the helming duties for four hours, using all of his guile to ensure Courrier Recommandé’s crew settled any nerves and recovered lost ground at a critical stage.

    Having won the 50th Anniversary of the Rolex Middle Sea Race, Courrier Recommandé are planning on travelling to Australia for 2019’s 75th edition of the Rolex Sydney Hobart. A tantalising opportunity for Trentesaux to become the first skipper to win all three of the Rolex-partnered 600-nm offshore races.

    First time achievers
    Competing for the first time, and amongst the crews to travel furthest to Malta were the Filipino sailors on the 40-ft Hurricane Hunter. In a race that witnessed 31 retirements, their sense of accomplishment on crossing the finish line off Valletta was palpable. ”We never thought about not finishing,” explained skipper Albert Altura. “It was a tough race for us. We always kept pressing. We had all the challenges that a big race presents – broken sails, blown out spinnakers. The crew were all composed, our spirit was never broken. The wind conditions in this race made us better sailors.” While winning the main prizes and classes is a significant incentive at the race, the experiences gained and challenges conquered in completing the race are as memorable and character defining. Perhaps no boat embodied this more than the race’s last finisher, L’Aventure, which spent five days, 13 hours and 45 minutes at sea. Likewise, those who sailed double-handed and for whom resources are extended. In this Class, last year’s overall race winning owner Igor Rytov triumphed with Bogatyr. A year ago, an exhausted Rytov remarked that he couldn’t conceive returning to the race. Yet twelve months later, the Russian sailor attacked the course with just as much vigour and determination.

    A time for celebration
    Another of the invited guests, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston returned to Malta, thirty-eight years after he completed the race. His one appearance in 1970 came just eighteen months after his ground-breaking solo non-stop circumnavigation of the globe. Observing this year’s race start from Saluting Battery, Valletta, Knox-Johnston commented: “Everyone thinks it is the strong winds which are difficult. Sailing when there is no wind, that’s when the skills come in. That is why this is such an attractive race, because you get that combination.”

    Fittingly, Knox-Johnston is also celebrating a golden anniversary of his own in 2018. His world-girdling adventure having started on 14 June, 1968. A legendary achievement for which his trusted navigational aide was a Rolex timepiece, the very reward bestowed on Trentesaux for winning the Rolex Middle Sea Race fifty years later. It is indeed, a significant year for yachting anniversaries.

    No races were held from 1984 to 1995 so, although this was the 50th anniversary of the race, it actually marked the 39th edition. The 40th Rolex Middle Sea Race takes place next year, starting on Saturday, 19 October. And, undoubtedly, more stories of passion, skill and determination will be recorded in the history of this classic race.

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  • Rolex Middle Sea Race 2018

    Vi kom ju inte iväg till Malta i år…

    Men flyg och hotell var ju redan bokat, så Johan Fredriksson åkte ner ändå. Och lyckades hitta en bra båt att segla med.

    Här är hans rapport…

    Nu har det snart gått 2 dygn sedan målgången i Rolex Middle Sea Race. Årets upplaga var nr 50 vilket gjorde tävlingen extra uppsnackad…

    Min medverkan blev klar sen eftermidag dagen innan start, och jag hade turen att hitta en stabil fin Farr 46 där de två ryska ägarna Alex och Anton behövde lite extra händer💪 Med ombord var även 2 proffs samt ordföranden för det Tjetjenska seglarförbundet. Att starta från Valetta i strålande högsommarväder tillsammans med båtar som Rambler och stora trimaraner som Maserati Multi 70 kändes helt ok 😉.

    Vi kom iväg grymt bra i lovart och hade Matador 2 båtlängder bakåt… Kort kryss ut sedan upp med A4an ca 20 min…

    Vi strulade lite vid nedtagningen men lyckades sedan segla oss upp genom fältet norrut mot Sicilien .
    Vid Syracusa låg vi trea i gruppen men sedan dog vinden alltmer… Vägvalet upp mot Messinasundet var ganska svårt men vi ville inte hamna i mitten…

    Uppe i sundet var tidvattnet på väg mot oss vilket gjorde att vi valde att segla NÄRA den östra sidan . Tyvärr sågs vi med strömvirveln som tog oss 500 m åt fel håll … Inte bra. Vi bygde fart igen och lyckades komma över till Siciliensidan där vi låg ca 100 m från Matador (den enda svenska båten i racet).

    Här seglade vi sen sön kväll och kunde höra hundskallen och blåljusen alldeles nära.

    Väl ute ur sundet ökade åskan mer och mer vilket till slut resulterade i en åskby på 25-30 m/s mån morgon kl 04.00….. Här blåste storseglet åt skogen….. Och vi som hade 400 sjömil kvar.

    Vi kryssade sedan ner mot Palermo i allt starkare vind och lyckades ändå överleva bra med stormstoren som liknar en orange slips på 15 m2

    Vinden skulle öka mot 35 kn och vrida höger vilket gav oss en fin resa under tisdagsdygnet.

    Här var det plattläns ner mot Pantalerien för att sedan bli bättre skärning ner mot Lampedusien… Det var här vi lyckades pressa upp båten i 25,2 knop mitt under fullmånen!

    Nu blåste det ca 40 kn vilket räckte mer än väl.

    Här hade många båtar problem och Matador var tvungna att panikgippa då de nästan krockade med ett stort fartyg.. Detta gjorde att de blåste ett par travare som håller fast storen i masten;( De lyckades ändå reparera i lä bakom Lampedusien innan den långa sträckbogen upp mot Malta.

    Vi gjorde bra fart på den sista sträckan där vi snittade runt 9 kn med 3:an och stormstoren..

    Straxt efter lunchtid och ca 4 dygn lyckades vi krossa mållinjen…. Vi slutade 7:a i IRC 3 vilket efter omständigheterna måste va helt ok….

    Hela inramningen med alla nya platser , ryssar samt fullmånen gjorde detta till ett minne för livet 🤟

    Nu slappar jag på en balkong med utsikt över hamnen…….

    Hoppas vi kommer hit igen 2019 med Blur för då j…ar hämtar vi hem klockan☝️

    Eller hur Peter?

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  • North Sails VOR Debrief

    Intressant läsning om erfarenheterna från förra Volvo Ocean Race. Både kring hur “triple headed” ersatt A3 och nya J0.

    What happened is, the sailors figured out a way to sail the boat completely differently from the way anyone imagined. That’s where creative sailors always win. And even though it was an option they all wanted, they essentially made a new sail obsolete just by figuring out a better way to race the boat faster with the rest of the sails. And that technique and thinking is going to trickle down through other fleets too.

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  • Det är inte fusk om man kommer undan?

    Andrew McIrvine, som är Admiral på RORC och ordförande i International Maxi Association, har skrivit till World Sailing.

    Det är en fråga som vi diskuterat här tidigare; duktiga seglare och proffs som medvetet bryter mot reglerna, men uppenbart tycker det är ok så länge man inte åker fast.

    Många har sin inkomst kopplad till seglingen, så det är värt att ta lite genvägar för att leverera ett bra resultat.

    Men det är förödande för vår spårt, både på lång och kort sikt.

    De senaste publika exemplen är väl J/70-klassen där flera preoffsteam hade bytt kölar, eller ORC-vinnaren Scugnizza som borrat hål i balkar för att kunna fylla dessa med vatten vid inmätning. Eller Iker Martinez som fuskat med materialet både på VOR och nu senast i augusti på sin Nacra 17 (någon som vet hur det gick med regel 69)?

    I våra vatten finns det en rad exempel där segelmakare “glömt” att mäta in segel, navigatörer som tar hjälp från meteorolog på land och team som skiter i att segla banan.

    Andrew lyfter också upp sportens oförmåga att hantera dessa case. I de allra flesta fall så vill arrangörer, nationella myndigheter och klassförbund tysta ner eventuella regelbrott. Reaktionen att “det här skall inte avgöras i diskussioner på nätet” innebär oftast att det skall sopas under mattan i ett stängt styrelserum,.

    Dear President,

    I am writing because of my deep concern over the rise of cheating within our sport and the lack of use of process and sanctions to deal with it.

    This was prompted by the recent announcement by the J70 Class Association of the sanctions they were going to apply to those who had arrived at the 2017 World Championship with boats that had been deliberately altered such that they were no longer in class. They had been disqualified from competing at the event but now 4 months later the sanction applied was as little as a 4-month ban – covering the winter, mainly non-sailing, season.

    This appeared totally inadequate as a sentence of this type will be ineffective as a deterrent to increasing flouting of the rules.

    I am using this as an example as it is a class with which I have no involvement and am therefore seeing it from an independent stance,

    An example from within my sphere was the case of ‘Scugnizza’ a boat eventually disqualified from the 2016 ORC European Championships by an International Jury for blatant measurement anomalies. ORC could do this and ban them from their events but no action was taken by either MNA or WS despite the boat being filled with ‘professionals’.

    Bruno Finzi, Chairman of the Offshore Racing Council, supports me in our frustration with the lack of sanction from higher authorities.

    Stan Honey, Chairman of the Oceanic and Offshore Committee shares our concerns.

    This ‘culture’ of ‘it’s not cheating unless you are caught’ is becoming increasingly prevalent.

    It is probably associated with greater involvement of professional sailors who have a more desperate need to win to maintain their livelihood.

    Our sport used to be largely self-policing and honourable. Sadly those days are long gone and it must now become a major function of World Sailing to police the sport effectively.

    Only serious lengthy bans to individuals perpetrating these offences will have such an effect.

    From communication with many sailors, it is clear that this lack of control is becoming a major disincentive to going racing at many levels.

    We feel it is imperative that World Sailing as a whole take a much firmer line in trying to stamp out this culture. This will involve commitment from above down; all the way from the Executive to individual race organising authorities.

    We very much hope this can be put high on your agenda.

    With kind regards,

    Yours sincerely,

    Andrew J McIrvine FRCS

    Member, WS Classes Committee

    Secretary-General, International Maxi Association

    Admiral, Royal Ocean Racing Club

    Senaste exemplet var ett efterspel efter sommarens Offshore Worlds i Holland, där båtar visade sig inte stämma med sina mätbrev. Trots nytt mätbrev och reviderade resultat (inget förändrades) så väljer man att lägga locket på. Det finns ju ingen formell mätprotest då regattan är slut, men om man skickar ett team för att mäta om en båt så känns det ändå som att det skulle kunna vara en publik process?

    Jag kan förstå att man vill ta hänsyn till båtägare och mätmän, men man förstärker en kultur av att tysta ner saker som inte är rätt.

    Man sänder signalen att är ok att bryta mot reglerna – så länge jag kommer undan med det.

    Och så vill vi inte ha det.

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