In This Issue
Doldrums Ahead......And 1000 Miles Behind
New start for Jeremie Beyou
Jules Verne Trophy: Sodebo and Gitana crews eye record sub-forty-day lap of the planet
METS would start this week...
SA's Baum elected vice president of World Sailing
Shenzhen Announced As New Host Of World Match Racing Tour Finals 2021-2025
Sleek and purposeful - Carbolink
Harken Young 88 Nationals and North Sails Owners Championship
Industry News
Letters to the Editor
Featured Charter: Halas - Classic Motor Yacht
Featured Brokerage:
• • Race For Water - MOD 70 Trimaran
• • Ocean Explorer 60
• • FarEast 28R - NEW BOAT
The Last Word: John Lennon

Brought to you by Seahorse magazine and EuroSail News is a digest of sailing news and opinions, regatta results, new boat and gear information and letters from sailors -- with a European emphasis. Contributions welcome, send to

Doldrums Ahead......And 1000 Miles Behind
The Doldrums passage continues to look quite promising for the pacemakers of the Vendée Globe as Alex Thomson (HUGO BOSS) holds a margin of just over 100 nautical miles on Thomas Ruyant (LinkedOut).

Ruyant and fourth placed Charlie Dalin (Apivia) were the quickest overnight but in general speeds have eased now since yesterday's burst when it seemed Alex Thomson's 24 hour record might fall.

So far Ruyant, who had to abandon his Vendée Globe in December 2016 when he hit a semi-submerged object west of New Zealand, has roundly endorsed his pre-start ranking as a podium favourite on his Verdier design. His solid routing choices have been enhanced by excellent speed in all conditions and this morning he is in second, 35 miles clear of Dalin and his similar Verdier design which has been showing near identical speeds over the last 24 hours in the trade winds conditions - both doing 486 nautical miles to 0400hrs this morning.

Both have gained about 30 miles on leader Thomson since the equivalent position report yesterday morning. So far the British skipper has not shown any significant slowdown to signal the start of the ITCZ and was still making close to 20kts averages through the nigh at some 400 nautical miles to the Equator. The leaders should pass into the Southern Hemisphere tomorrow night or Thursday morning.

New start for Jeremie Beyou
After less than three and a half days stopped in Les Sables d'Olonne, Jeremie Beyou, skipper of Charal, crossed the start line of the Vendee Globe a second time at 5:10 pm French time. He set off after spending an hour with his team testing sails and the various parts of the boat that were repaired.


Jules Verne Trophy: Sodebo and Gitana crews eye record sub-forty-day lap of the planet
The solo Vendee Globe skippers may be grabbing all the headlines out on the Atlantic right now, but back in France two other major sailing teams are readying themselves and their 100-foot Ultim trimarans for separate attempts at setting a new fully crewed around-the-world record.

The two syndicates, Sodebo and Gitana, are close neighbours on the waterfront in Lorient in Brittany - a city universally accepted as the spiritual home of professional ocean racing. Each are have developed gigantic state-of-the-art ocean-going foiling trimarans for their around-the-world record attempts and are led by giants of the French offshore racing scene.

At stake now is the Jules Verne Trophy for the fastest circumnavigation of the world aboard a sailboat of any size and with no restriction on the number of crew.

The current holder is French skipper Francis Joyon and the crew of IDEC who in 2017 tore around the world in just 40 days, 23 hours, 30 minutes, 30 seconds.

Now the Gitana and Sodebo squads are targeting a sub-forty-day lap of the globe aboard their flying multihulls that are capable of cruising at speeds in region of 35 to 40 knots.

Full story in

METS would start this week...
Robline METS 2021 was supposed to start this week. This year the METS booth of Robline / New England Ropes will stay empty. Of course, we would love to be there under the normal circumstances. However, we are not pessimistic about the current situation and try to make the best out of it, as we at Robline are dedicated to adapt to change.

Therefore, we invite you, our customers, to meet us on Teams and wherever online, to find out what we have new for you for the next season. A little spoiler alert - it's all about packaging and sustainability :)

Furthermore, we at Robline believe in this, that mankind will get this pandemic under control until next years' time and we already booked our usual booth for 2021! For this reason, we are even more excited to see all the familiar faces again next year.

Until then…


SA's Baum elected vice president of World Sailing
Philip Baum competing at Finn Masters Barbados. Photo by Michael Kurtz. Click on image to enlarge.

Philip Baum South African and African sailors have hailed the appointment of Philip Baum as one of the vice presidents of World Sailing.

A former president of SA Sailing, Baum was chosen for the position at the recent elections in which China's Quanhai Li was elected as the new World Sailing president.

The newly appointed board of directors will serve a four-year term up until the 2024 General Assembly.

A sailor himself since the age of 10, the new VP explained: "World Sailing should not be seen as a foreign, distant organisation. It is our international federation and belongs to all sailors. By getting involved we can shape the organisation into the service vehicle we need it to be. Anyone with ideas or wishing to become involved should not hesitate to be in touch."

Baum's election manifesto

Shenzhen Announced As New Host Of World Match Racing Tour Finals 2021-2025
Organisers of the World Match Racing Tour today announced a new agreement with the People's Government of Bao'an District of Shenzhen, China to host the World Match Racing Tour Finals from 2021-2025. The agreement marks a first major step in a strategic development by the World Match Racing Tour to expand and promote match racing in China and other Asian markets. The Tour has been sanctioned by World Sailing as a 'Special Event' since 2006 and annually awards the Match Racing World Championship.

The event was approved by the General Administration of Sports of China. The new event, SHENZHEN - BAO'AN MATCH CUP, will be hosted by the Organising Committee of the World Match Racing Tour and the China Yachting Association, the Shenzhen Municipal Administration of Culture, Media, Tourism and Sports, and People's Government of Bao'an District of Shenzhen.

The first SHENZHEN - BAO'AN MATCH CUP will take place in Dachan Bay, Bao'an District, Shenzhen from 15-19 December, 2021 and will award a minimum prize purse of USD200,000. The race area will be located close to the Qianhai Free Trade Zone and Bao'an Coastal Culture Park, providing spectators the opportunity to enjoy and watch the racing from close to the shore.

Average temperatures in Shenzhen during December are around 21°C with wind speeds ranging from 7-12 knots. The boats to be used at the SHENZHEN - BAO'AN MATCH CUP will be confirmed at a later date.

Sleek and purposeful - Carbolink
Carbolink Not so long ago the idea of employing composite rigging on an 81-metre world girdling schooner would have earned you a medical referral. Today it's the obvious choice, even for Royal Huisman's biggest sailing vessel

Solid carbon rigging for an 81-metre three-masted Panamax schooner? No problem at all. When Royal Huisman built the world's largest aluminium-hulled sailing yacht - the Dykstra-designed Sea Eagle II, delivered in July - the standing rigging was custom made by Carbo-Link.

Sea Eagle II is one of the 10 largest sailing yachts in the world and the largest vessel Huisman has ever built. The 90-metre Athena is a bit longer if you count her bowsprit, but in terms of gross tonnage - which for superyachts is the measurement that really counts - the 1,150GT Sea Eagle II is in a different league. Before the build could start, Huisman first had to extend its biggest shed.

Full article in the December issue of Seahorse

Harken Young 88 Nationals and North Sails Owners Championship
Click on image to enlarge.

Harken Young 88 Sixteen Young 88's will hit the harbour this weekend (21st & 22nd November) in Auckland for what is going to be a fiercely contested Harken Young 88 National Championship and North Sails Owners Championship combined regatta.

The Young 88 fleet is one of the most competitive one design classes in the country, and that is sure to continue this weekend with an array of talented and experienced sailors competing across various crews.

Raging Hormones is back to defend its title after winning the previous two events in 2018 and 2019, albeit with different skippers. Zane Gifford helmed the boat to glory in 2018, with Andrew Wills taking the reins in 2019, but it is Gifford who is jumping back on the stick this year. Another notable entry is Slipstream III which won the event in 2016 and 2017 and will have Jed Roberts on the helm this weekend. Slipstream III and Raging Hormones have been the success stories in this regatta in recent history, with no other boat winning the title since Jeremy Lomas helmed Flash Gordon to victory in 2014.

The first warning signal will sound at 0955hours on Saturday morning, and again racing will commence at the same time on Sunday.

With up to eight races scheduled there will be plenty of opportunity for some incredibly tight and exciting racing across both days, and as with any one design racing, it's anyone's guess who will come out on top and be crowned 2020 Harken Young 88 National Champion and North Sails Owners Champion on Sunday.

View the full entry list HERE

More Regatta Information HERE and on the Young 88 web site HERE

Industry News
The first virtual yacht show in the Balearic Islands opens tomorrow, bringing together thousands of professionals from the industry in one virtual meeting organised by the Chamber of Commerce of Mallorca and the Balearic Marine Cluster.

From November 18-20, the Balearic Yacht Show will feature more than 40 talks and conferences on the nautical industry and over 80 virtual stands.

One of the highlights will be a panel discussion chaired by IBI editor Ed Slack on 'The Boat of the Future'. The event will be held at 9.45 CET on Friday 20 November, with Jan-Erik Viitala, CEO of Axopar Boats; Jarrod Seymour, Vice President, Marine Segment Leader, Garmin; and international yacht designer Tony Castro, debating what the production boat of the future could look like and how industry can meet the needs of a new generation of boater.

Other highlights include a talk entitled 'Working & Living in the Balearic Islands' on Wednesday 18 November; 'Why Refit in the Balearics?' hosted by international media partner Superyacht Times on Thursday 19 November; and 'How to Become the Cleanest, Greenest Superyacht Hub in Europe', hosted by the Superyacht Group on Friday 20 November.


Dutch King Willem Alexander has granted superyacht-builder Hakvoort Shipyard the designation 'Royal' to mark its 100 years of service.

"We are extremely proud to have received the 'Royal' designation," said Hakvoort brothers and co-owners Klaas and Albert Hakvoort. "This crowns the work of current and previous generations, which has always been driven by entrepreneurship and passion. This milestone moment is a huge encouragement for the future."

The Hakvoort yard is located at Monnickendam, a picture-postcard town on the northern outskirts of Amsterdam.

The yard has been in the hands of the Hakvoort family since 1919. It is currently working on three yacht projects.

Hakvoort has made at least 43 yachts of up to 63m since 1985. A Dutch company qualifies for the 'Royal' designation if it has a distinguished history in its field of expertise, is an enterprise of national importance and has been in existence for at least a century.


The French boating industry is at odds with a change in the application of VAT rules on pleasure boats purchased for hire with an option to purchase, which will impact boat rentals as well as boat purchases financed through leasing arrangements.

The French government announced a change in the VAT rate applicable to pleasure boats purchased for hire with an option to purchase, which will impact boat rentals as well as boat purchases which are financed through leasing arrangements.


AIMEX, the Australian International Marine Export Group, announced the winners of the 2020 Australian Marine Industry Awards at Southport Yacht Club in Queensland last night in the run-up to the Sanctuary Cove Boat Festival which opened today.

The Covid-safe event was also streamed live online, and celebrated the outstanding achievers in the Australian marine export, superyacht and commercial sectors.

There were winners across all 12 categories this year, evidence that the industry is thriving and continuing to grow with significant investment by key players into enhancing facilities and developing capability. It was the first major marine event to go ahead in Australia since Covid.

The winners of the 2020 Australian Marine Industry Awards are:

- Commercial Marine Project/Design or Manufacturer of the Year - Aus Ships Group for the design and build of the 90ft passenger ferry 'Yoogera'
- Commercial Marine Service Provider of the Year - Spear Green Design
- Innovative Commercial Product or Service of the Year - BtB Marine for its 750 Ultra Long-Range workboat
- Superyacht Industry Service Provider of the Year - Rivergate Marina and Shipyard
- Superyacht Industry Project/Design or Manufacturer of the Year - Gold Coast City Marina and Shipyard
- Australian Voyage of the Year - Captain Gavin Bladen of SY Hemisphere, the first foreign flagged vessel to charter in Australian waters since the Special Recreational Vessels Act passed in late 2019
- Most Innovative New Export Product or Service of the Year - Fliteboard for its electric-powered hydrofoil surfboard
- Junior Exporter of the Year - Marine Airflow
- 2020 Exporter of the Year - Riviera Australia
- Best Marketing Strategy - Aqualuma LED Lighting
- Apprentice of the Year - Aus Ships Group's Jasmine Willoughby
- Marine Industry Champion Award - Trenton Gay from Gold Coast City Marina and Shipyard


As part of the development of the 3,800sq km Amaala project in the Red Sea off Saudi Arabia, its developer, the Public Investment Fund, has teamed up with Monaco-based OceanoScientific and completed a two-week ocean water study in the western Mediterranean.

A specially-converted former 33.5m (110ft) racing maxi catamaran named Amaala Explorer was used for research purposes.

The Amaala Project is one of the three parts of 'The Red Sea Collection' scheme being developed in northwest Saudi Arabia as an investment to help divest the country's economy away from fossil fuel.

Amaala extends across three sites and includes attracting superyachts to a set of high-end accommodation, cultural and tourism features. A group of some seven marinas are included to berth superyachts and also provide support for the various service craft that are need for it.

The two-week scientific expedition using the Amaala Explorer was to measure and understand the impact of river water pollutants on human and sea life.


Groupe Beneteau expects business to be down 25 to 30% year on year due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The figures are part of the boatbuilder's interim financials as at August 31 2020 and show that while the impact of the pandemic remains stark, the results are better than first forecast due to a good level of boating activity once restrictions were lifted in the summer.

The group is also benefiting from its diverse business which enables it to offset contraction in certain markets such as charter against growth in others such as outboard.

In addition, measures to adapt production capacity and fixed costs in line with market volumes are being rolled out, making it possible to reduce costs by up to 65m Euros on a full year basis.

Brands are being overhauled with a reduction from 12 to eight enabling the group to reduce its investment by 30% compared with 2019. Eighteen new models are released this year with others in the pipeline.

Sales continue to grow in the dayboating segment, partially offsetting the contraction in charter sales and inboard motorboats. The boat division has adjusted production and five sites have been hibernated, closed or sold and partial activity measures have been rolled out in France and Italy.

With most of the autumn shows cancelled, all brands have deployed a range of initiatives such as virtual shows, private trials and exclusive events.

Groupe Beneteau has changed its year-end date and the results pertain to 12 months of a 16-month transition year ending 31 December 2020. Revenues are down 14% compared to 2019 but higher than the 16% to 18% forecast. EBITDA is close to 10%, better than the 8% forecast and the income from ordinary operations rate of 2.6% is also higher than forecast.

Letters To The Editor -
Letters are limited to 350 words. No personal attacks are permitted. We do require your name but your email address will not be published without your permission.

* From Donald Wilks:

As a RORC member, I received my invitation and papers for this year’s AGM and EGM. In the minutes of last year’s AGM was a question about Wicklow’s ability to accommodate all of the competitors in the Round Ireland Race at the finish. The Commodore (Steven Anderson) replied, and I quote: "Wicklow is small but it is very hospitable and dedicated to making it work. Any boats that cannot be accommodated will go to Dun Laoghaire.”

The mainstay of RORC’s argument to change the finish port of the Fastnet Race from Plymouth to Cherbourg was to accommodate the competitors at the finish. Will we now see the finish of the Round Ireland Race moved to Dun Laoghaire to accommodate competitors too?

* From Sean Purdy:

I have to take issue with a few of Peter Nicholson’s points about the Fastnet Race course change:

- The various south coast headlands "keep the fleet together", and "tidal timing is not critical". Tell that to anyone who’s missed the Portland gate on the first evening of the race, watching their close but slightly faster rivals sail away into Lyme Bay.

- On the leg back east from Bishop Rock the fleet "will have a huge choice as to which course to take”. That’s a bad thing? Sounds like tactically challenging racing to me, just like the rest of the course.

- The strong tides near the finish mean that a boat "may have sailed brilliantly to this point, but this will count for nothing”. Really? I think those who sail brilliantly will still deal with this particular challenge better than their competitors, which is the point of racing.

- "One of the main attractions of the Fastnet course is its fairness”. I really don’t see how fairness is unique to the Fastnet Race. And I can honestly say it never entered my head as motivation for the three races I did. Challenge, variety, competition, camaraderie, spectacle, beer - yes to all of these. But being more “fair” than any other races? Nope.

- The course change decision "seems to have been based solely on the quality of the post race social events and the associated financial advantages for the club”. That may be how it *seems* to you, but what the club actually *said* was that it was also driven by the greater capacity of Cherbourg, which would allow larger numbers to participate in a race that is over-subscribed, and for all finishers to berth together. I think both of those are a good thing.

I have, incidentally, already voted against the EGM motions put forward by Peter Nicholson and the other signatories.

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The Last Word
My defenses were so great. The cocky rock and roll hero who knows all the answers was actually a terrified guy who didn't know how to cry. Simple. -- John Lennon

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