Yachting News 23rd September 2009

Sep 23, 2009 No Comments by

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Greetings yachties

Volvo Ocean Race – Ericsson Walk

Clipper – 2nd start,

Des Top News,

World Match Racing Tour – Regal Faith,

Société Nautique de Genève – America’s Cup Rules,

Istanbul Eupora – Finish,

Melges 32,

more later, rum and Spa time :-)

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Nearly three months have passed since the Volvo Ocean Race finished in St Petersburg, Russia, and Ericsson Racing Team’s overall victory in the race was concluded. After a comprehensive period of analyzing and summarizing the successful campaign, Ericsson has taken the difficult decision not to participate in the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-2012. Read about this and much more below.

Our two boats are currently taking customers and partners out sailing outside Lidingö in Sweden and at the same time we would like to invite you to the closing of our boat yard in Kista and:

THE FINAL SALE OF ERICSSON RACING TEAM MERCHANDISE, OCTOBER 1-2, WELCOME!

Warm regards,
Ericsson Racing Team

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Volvo Ocean Race TV here

Ericsson Racing Team

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The ocean so adored by legendary French sailor, Bernard Moitessier, was in a benign mood this morning. As a watery sun rose over the town of La Rochelle, the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race fleet was lead out of the port by Joshua, the yacht raced 40 years ago by Moitessier in the Sunday Times Golden Globe race.

Clipper Race founder and Chairman, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, won the Golden Globe while Moitessier, so in tune with the simplicity of life at sea, turned his back on the race and completed another circuit around the Southern Ocean before making landfall in Tahiti.

As the ten o’clock start gun fired for the race to Rio de Janeiro, crews across the ten boats had to work hard to harness what little breeze there was. A mere zephyr blowing at just three knots meant that a mixture of lightweight kites and wind seekers were hoisted, generating the smallest amount of boat speed for the teams.

With 28 days of racing ahead of them, it will be a frustrating first 24 hours at sea and intense concentration will be required to gain the maximum speed through constant sail trimming. Team Finland set a strong example and it quickly meant that they headed the pack half an hour in to the race.

more here

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Société Nautique de Genève gains control of America’s Cup rules

by  Bob Fisher
guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 22 September 2009 16.43 BST

In a seven-page document, which until recently was kept secret, the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) has given the Swiss holders of the America’s Cup carte blanche with the sailing rules for the event, in exchange for a sum of €150,000 (£136,000).

The ISAF has granted the Société Nautique de Genève (SNG), which is represented by the Alinghi team, the right to amend the universally used Racing Rules of Sailing, and their interpretations. The ISAF has also agreed to waive all commercial and media rights to the event and to pay all the costs of anti-doping testing.

The US challenger, the Golden Gate Yacht Club, which will be represented in the 2010 race by the BMW Oracle team, fears the agreement gives the Swiss holders an advantage that is “grossly unfair” and threatens to bring the sport into disrepute.

In a letter to the ISAF the challenger’s skipper, Russell Coutts, has queried almost every item of the “secret” agreement. “[The] ISAF has overstepped its authority and given blanket advance approval for any change in any racing rule,” he wrote, adding that “there is no independent review available to the Golden Gate Yacht Club”.

“We don’t know when we go out to race what trick they are going to pull,” said the challenging team’s owner, Larry Ellison. “We can finish first, only for them to say, ‘You have broken this or that rule.’ We probably will be ruled out of every race.”

SNG is also demanding that all members of the race jury be bilingual in French and English, which is in direct contravention of ISAF regulations in which English is the only language for the sport, until the ISAF council votes otherwise. It is particularly remarkable as the majority of the Alinghi team that will represent the SNG are not Swiss, but New Zealanders and others whose native tongue is English. In making this demand, SNG is effectively ruling out many potential high-level members of the jury.

ISAF claims that its appointments working party has suggested the top people for the jury based on their technical skills and “as it happens three of the five are fluent in French as well as English”. The move is seen by some highly qualified international judges as being unnecessarily restrictive, particularly as two jurists must be “practising lawyers”.

GGYC and BMW Oracle are considering further action in the New York courts, where the America’s Cup is held in trust, against SNG for failing to meet its duties under the Deed of Gift that controls the way the cup races are managed.

more here

Court Order here

BMWOracle Statement

Alinghi Statement

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New Investors take a stake in the World Match Racing Tour

22nd September 2009, Hong Kong – based private company Regal Faith Ltd has acquired from F10 Holdings Ltd their interest in ProMatch Tour Ltd, the exclusive rights holder of the World Match Racing Tour (WMRT).

The investment by Regal Faith Ltd and its consortium of investors based in Hong Kong, Malaysia and Australia sees the company take an equity stake in the Tour. The consortium is excited to be involved in the sport of match racing and sees tremendous opportunities to build upon the already internationally established and prestigious WMRT.

The World Match Racing Tour has seen significant growth over the last three years since being granted the sole and exclusive rights and official sanction to run and manage the professional world tour or series in match racing by the International Sailing Federation (ISAF).

The involvement of Regal Faith Ltd and its consortium of private equity investors will see increased focus on developing world class venues around the world, whilst adding stability and structure to the existing professional sailing circuit.

Outgoing President Scott Macleod from F10 Holdings Ltd commented, “After over 20 years involvement with Tour from its early stages then through the Swedish Match Tour up to its current status as the ISAF sanctioned World Match Racing Tour I have taken considerable pride in the development of the sport. I am very happy to be passing the control of the World Match Racing Tour to the team at Regal Faith Ltd who have the experience and investment to realise the full potential of the Tour, I wish them and Peter Gilmour all the very best for the continued development of the Tour.”

Match racing veteran Peter Gilmour has been appointed Acting President and will become the Tour Advisor once a full time replacement has been found. Peter Gilmour commented, “Our sport is rapidly expanding in the commercial area, with the backing and support of a significant balance sheet to build this Tour we are delighted to be able to make this long awaited announcement. It has taken over three years to finalise this transaction and we will see considerable new plans develop over the coming months. The sport has seen aggressive development in events, America’s Cup and independent team participation, spectators, media interest and sponsors. We are looking forward to developing the WMRT further as the leading match racing World Series for professional sailors.”

For all WMRT events it will be business as usual. Tour Director Craig Mitchell said, “Regal Faith Ltd’s investment in the WMRT demonstrates the value that has been built up in the Tour over the last three years. The investment will enable us to continue to expand and develop the Tour and we look forward to delivering the vision of our new investors.”

The WMRT will be holding the annual Tour Summit for all event organisers on the day immediately following the World Yacht Racing Forum in Monaco on 11th December 2009.
Following consultation with the Tour’s event promoters and stakeholders a detailed presentation laying out the re-energised ambition and vision of the Tour will be unveiled during the opening weeks of 2010.

more here

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More traditional conditions have returned to Porto Cervo for Day One of the 2009 Audi Melges 32 World Championship. As the crews begin to arrive at the marina to prepare their boats for the first day of racing the sun is shining and there is a very encouraging ten knots of breeze already blowing from out on the racecourse.

Yesterday Giovanni Maspero and his slick Italian crew on Joe Fly led the fleet from the off (the entire fleet were a long way over the line to be honest) and went on to pull a lead of several minutes by the finish. There are at least ten boats here this week who have proved themselves capable of winning races and whilst there are clearly established favourites including Pieter Taselaar’s Bliksem and Carlo Alberini’s Calvi Network, we would not be surprised to see one of the ‘dark horses’ of this event like Joe Fly, Luigi Melegari’s Matrix or Joe Woods’s Red put up strong performances.

more here

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