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tough love

Apologies for the rough translation... For a year, Julian has been sailing on his Jeanneau Mélody, a 10.50 m sailboat . He had just bought it with a plan to organize climbing and canyoning courses.  This boat was therefore be his working tool as well as his home. But the project came to an abrupt end on Tuesday, June 7, 2022 at 12:30 p.m. Read on....

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’round they go

Big boats, small boats, fast boats, slow boats, old boats, new boats, pro sailors, and families on their only racing jaunt of the season, The Round the Island Race. One hull, two, and even a few trimarans all headed off on what is Britain’s biggest sailing race of the year. Throw in the Solent and a decent breeze and what do you have? Of course, it is the Isle of Wight Round the Island run by the Island Sailing Club. Start and finish at Cowes, the UK’s yachting Mecca, and leave the big lump of chalk to port all the way round. The first corner is The Needles and be careful the boiler from the wreck of the Varvassi is still there and has been accurately located in past races by the likes of Mike Slade’s  Longabarda and TV’s Barracuda of Tarrant. Ironically, the late great yachting scribe Bob Fisher on board on both occasions,  along the bottom (sorry – south) of the island past St Catherine’s Point with wind and tide decisions to be made then the turn at Bembridge and home with some of the slower boats, at times taking a seeming age to complete the course. This year the slowest IRC boats took a little over 10 hours to complete the course which was more than double the time of the line honors boat. Thank goodness for handicaps/ratings. This year many of the bigger boats were elsewhere, the TP52s were off on their own regatta somewhere way south of the UK for example. It was a day for the faster boats with the GP42 Dark ‘N’ Stormy (GBR 750R) with former Olympian Ian Walker on tactics and Mark Chisnell navigating holding off Khumbu (GBR 1542) by a minute & 3 seconds actual time to secure line honors...

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what’s in a name?

There’s a chance that you won’t have heard of Arcona Yachts and even if you have, you still might struggle to describe them. After all, this is a company that has enjoyed 40 years of success, but where much of it has been conducted away from the international spotlight. It is a company that has never set its primary goal as winning races and yet has delivered some impressive results nonetheless. It’s also a company that has produced nearly 1,000 boats in 40 years and has achieved cult status among those who have discovered the marque. But the focus of attention right now is the news that the co-founder of one of the biggest names in performance production boatbuilding and a former competitor has joined forces with Arcona. For Swedes, the fact that he’s a Dane may raise a wry smile, but to the rest of us Niels Jeppesen’s achievements with X-Yachts, the company he co-founded, along with his reputation on the racecourse, means that his views get taken seriously. Read on....

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kyiv libre!

I was a guest at Noroton YC during the Viper 640 Women’s Atlantic Coast Championship last weekend.  This bar menu at the Bombay Sapphire cocktail party caught my Eye and reminded me of a story that I overheard at the Bacardi Cup in March.  Many of you know me as Eye Sailor, outspoken on some issues, silent on others. I am not a schill for Bacardi. This is just a shout-out for a company that in an age of corporate anonymity is still family-owned, has supported a legendary sailing event for 95 consecutive years and has never forgotten what it is like to be refugees.  You all know the story of the Bacardi Cup.  For those that need the abridged version:  Don Facundo Bacardí Massó founded the Bacardi distillery in Santiago, Cuba in 1862.  Don Facundo’s wife chose a bat for the company logo, because according to Cuban and Spanish lore, bats symbolize good health, good fortune and family unity. The founder’s son planted a palm tree at the opening of the distillery and launched the legend of El Coco “ The Bacardi company will survive in Cuba so long as the coconut palm, El Coco lives”.  In 1926, with prohibition in the United States, Cuba was a hot destination for American tourists and American sailors. The Star class held its midwinter championship in Havana and the Bacardi family sponsored the Trofeo de Bacardi.   The Star Class prospered, so did Bacardi, and their namesake trophy hosted every year in Havana in the Star class became one of the bucket list trophies to win in the sport of sailing. The Bacardi family supported Cuba’s yearnings for freedom from the corrupt dictatorship of Baptista and so they (like many other patriotic Cubans) backed Fidel Castro in the revolution of 1957-1959.   Fidel rewarded them by confiscating all of Bacardi’s corporate assets...

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personalized

Champion race boat designers Carkeek Design Partners thought they were drawing a new one-off world cruising cat for an experienced yacht builder's personal use. Things didn’t quite turn out that way... Some of the best yachts are created when a race boat builder wants to go off cruising with his family and has a boat designed for personal use. Thus it was (initially at least) for the Carkeek-designed Seaquest 46, which has exactly the right sort of pedigree. It’s built by Mike Eaton, whose highly-regarded racing monohulls such as the Prima 38 and RP36 have proven themselves to be excellent all-rounders. Shaun Carkeek’s wide-ranging successes across many strands of high-performance sailing are already well-known to most… However, instead of going off cruising himself, Eaton has put those plans on hold and put the Seaquest 46 into production. It’s the first model in a new range of catamarans, built in Dubai where his shipyard has been based for most of the last 20 years. Before he’d even started, the first two Seaquest 46s had already been sold off plan. Read on....

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