yacht racing Luxury Yacht & Superyacht News

Mount Gay Rum sponsors Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week

May 20, 2011

Mount Gay Rum will be back to support Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week as the official ‘Regatta Rum’. Around 8,500 competitors sailing in nearly 1,000 boats and many more visitors will be able to enjoy ‘the rum that invented rum’ which has a heritage dating back to 1705.

Mount Gay Rum sponsors Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week . Credit Owen Buggy - Plugphotography.com

Mount Gay Rum sponsors Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week . Credit Owen Buggy - Plugphotography.com

Alvin Saal, Brand Manager for Mount Gay Rum, comments: “We are happy to be associated with one of the UK’s longest running and most successful sporting events as it is the ideal platform for us to promote the world’s oldest rum. Our connection with the sailing community has helped cement the brand’s position in the golden rum category and after a highly successful regatta as Supporting Sponsor last year, Mount Gay Rum’s status and popularity has increased even more.”

Mount Gay Eclipse and the premium Extra Old variants will be sampled at a variety of events and functions throughout the Week and the sailor’s favourite tipple will also be available in bars, yachts clubs and venues throughout the town. With its official Regatta Rum status, Mount Gay will also be supporting a number of special events and functions including the largest and oldest fleet racing in the regatta, the XOD Class who are celebrating their centenary and Toe in the Water, the event’s official charity.

One social function not to be missed will be the infamous Mount Gay Red Cap party on Wednesday 10th August. There will be a chance to gain one of the most cherished mementoes of any regatta – the coveted Mount Gay Red Cap! Tickets will sell out fast and will be available at the Mount Gay Rum Cocktail Bar on Town Quay, Cowes.

Mount Gay Rum:

• Mount Gay supports over 120 regattas worldwide.

• Mount Gay Rum is distributed in the UK by leading drinks distributor First Drinks Brands.

•Mount Gay Rum, the finest, oldest brand of rum in existence, has been produced in Barbados with passion and unparalleled excellence since 1703. Expertly fashioned from rich sugar cane and with the pristine, coral-filtered water native to the Island, Mount Gay Rum is a sumptuous, inimitable expression of the Barbadian art of living.

Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week – 6th-13th August 2011:

• Cowes Week is one of the longest running events in UK sporting history having first taken place in 1826.

• Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week is an inclusive, aspirational sailing regatta; the largest of its kind in the world.

• Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week attracts around 1,000 yachts in up to 40 classes, and 8,500 competitors ranging from weekend sailors through to Olympic medallists and World Champions.

• Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week has a lively festival atmosphere ashore with a broad range of social activities that provide an exciting and varied “après-sail” programme.

• Supporting Sponsors for Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week include: BOSS Watches, Gill, Liz Earle, Isle of Wight Council, Mount Gay, Piper-Heidsieck, Sperry Top-Sider, Talisker, and Wightcable.

Karpaz Gate Marina, Northern Cyprus to welcome Eastern Mediterranean Yacht Rally

May 17, 2011

Karpaz Gate Marina (KGM), the new luxury marina in northern Cyprus, is approximately 90% complete and will be launched, on schedule, at the beginning of June. Ahead of its official launch, the marina management team have announced that it will be welcoming yachts which are participating in the Eastern Mediterranean Yacht Rally (EMYR) – an annual rally which involves approximately 60 sailing yachts travelling around the highlights of the Eastern Mediterranean.

Karpaz Gate Marina, Northern Cyprus to welcome Eastern Mediterranean Yacht Rally

Karpaz Gate Marina, Northern Cyprus to welcome Eastern Mediterranean Yacht Rally

The yacht owners and guests participating in the rally will be the very first official visitors to the marina. During the stopover at Karpaz Gate Marina they will be offered exclusive access to the facilities, weeks ahead of its official launch. All will be provided with designated berthing free of charge, and entertainment is being arranged including a welcoming party which will be attended by VIPs and local dignitaries.

The build of the marina is in the final stages and when complete, the marina will be the most luxurious in the Eastern Mediterranean. At the current time the marina breakwaters and the main marina elements of dry dock, promenade, and marina buildings are being completed.

Karpaz Gate Marina 2

Karpaz Gate Marina 2

Karpaz Gate Marina recently ran an introductory free berth offer which has generated an unprecedented level of interest from sailing and motor-yacht owners from around the world. As a result, approximately 100 berths have now been allocated. All the winners have been informed and they will enjoy complimentary berthing privileges from until 31st March 2012. Two hundred further berths are available at Karpaz Gate Marina with both short-term and long-term availability.

Roy Klajman, Director of Sea-Alliance Group,the marina management company,said: “The investment by Karpaz Bay Resort Ltd and the relentless efforts of all who have worked on the project, and their combined years of expertise and a sensible degree of flexibility, means that Karpaz Gate Marina will open on time and is expected to become one of the most popular marina destinations in the eastern Mediterranean. We are looking forward to welcoming our first guests to the marina, and to being part of this established yachting event!”

The Karpaz Gate Marina Under Construction

Karpaz Gate Marina is the country’s first-ever luxury marina and is part of the all-new Karpaz Bay Resort (KBR). Located on the stunning KarpazPeninsulain the north-eastern tip of the Turkish Republic of  Northern Cyprus (TRNC), Karpaz Gate Marina has 300 berths available including 12 berths for super yachts and mega yachts up to a maximum of 55 metres in length.

Every detail of the marina has been designed with yacht owners and visitors in mind, and Karpaz will be an attractive destination for day and weekend trips, and where both large and small boats, and long- and short-term visitors, will be equally welcome.  The management has recently announced the addition of a beach club to the facilities, which is set to be open later in the year.

The resort will also include a children’s playground, gym, as well as restaurants, hotel, a mini supermarket and a range of services such as yacht brokerage, ship chandlery, a sailing school, and a diving centre as well as dining facilities. Sea-Alliance Group, the marina management company, has already secured a number of international companies to have a presence at Karpaz Gate Marina, and is currently in negotiations with others who are interested in taking the remaining available spaces within the marina buildings.

About Karpaz Gate Marina

Karpaz Bay Resort Ltd. (KBR), owned by an international group of investors, is developing a first class tourist destination, which will allow guests to enjoy the range of activities of the local “Karpaz” Peninsula.

Following the completion of the marina, development will continue with a lively commercial promenade with shops, restaurants and bars, and the first stage of a hotel complex.

2011 Audi MedCup season launches with Cascais Trophy

May 16, 2011

The Atlantic waters off Cascais were sparkling in the Spring sunshine today Sunday as the majority of the fleets of TP52’s and new Soto 40’s took advantage of the near perfect training conditions to continue their work-up to the start of racing for the Cascais Trophy.

Cascais Trophy 15 05 2011 © Carmen HidalgoAudi MedCup

Cascais Trophy 15 05 2011 © Carmen HidalgoAudi MedCup

A glittering start to the season is assured when two of the newest TP52’s are formally launched on Monday at midday.

Italy’s Audi Azzura Sailing Team will have Princess Zahra Aga Khan as godmother, while model Eva Padberg and actor Jean Reno will share duties naming the Franco-German TP52 Audi A1 Team powered by ALL4ONE

Princess Zahra Aga Khan is President of the Board of Directors of the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda which the Audi Azzurra Sailing Team represent and will be present to act as godmother.

Eva Padberg was voted sexiest woman in the world in 2005 by readers of FHM and featured on the cover of GQ in 2006, while actor Jean Reno – Hollywood star of Mission Impossible, The Da Vinci Code, Léon, – is no stranger to the Audi MedCup Circuit after sailing as a guest in Cagliari, Sardinia last year.

Cascais Trophy 15 05 2011 © Carmen HidalgoAudi MedCup

Cascais Trophy 15 05 2011 © Carmen HidalgoAudi MedCup

Both Vrolijk designed Audi supported boats will fly distinctive spinnakers carrying the message ‘Audi Ultra-Lightweight Technology.’

After sailing on Monday, leading TP52 designer Rolf Vrolijk (NED) and a prominent designer from Audi will give an informal seminar on design trends, similarities and comparisons between the different marine and car technologies.

Cascais Trophy, 15 05 2011 © Pedro MartnezAudi MedCup

Cascais Trophy, 15 05 2011 © Pedro MartnezAudi MedCup

A break in training?

With no limitations on training days pre-regatta this season, some of the TP52 teams in particular have been training off Cascais now for several days and the brisk conditions have seen several breakages on the newly launched boats.

“Of course it is better to learn what will break now before the regatta starts rather than once on the race course.” Comments Nacho Postigo (ESP) Audi MedCup director,

“It is difficult to predict what the weather conditions will be like for the week, certainly a bit light and weak for the start of the week, then seeing more wind and maybe some rain for Thursday and Friday and then into sea breeze for the weekend.”

“Training has been very good so far, but people have been breaking things and that has been good for them, learning about the boats before the start of racing. But it has been very changeable with wind from the north, and now today the wind has been coming from the east.”

Cascais Trophy, 15 05 2011 © Pedro MartnezAudi MedCup

Cascais Trophy, 15 05 2011 © Pedro MartnezAudi MedCup

Double Olympic silver medallist Ross MacDonald (CAN) returns this season as tactician for José Cusí’s (ESP) iconic Bríbon (ESP) team which has a boat which is new to them, the former world championship winning Matador in the team’s 40th anniversary year:

“It has not been an easy year to get boats together on to the start line, but for sure we can say the overall standard is up a step, it is just phenomenal. There will be little to choose between the boats and the new boats. It will be very interesting to see the Soto 40’s start training in earnest Monday.”

“We have had a few days of good training since Wednesday. The conditions have been really typical of Cascais. Offshore it is breezy with good waves, very shifty and gusty. It is such a great spot.”

“I could not really tell you the differences between the new boats and this boat which is new to us, but is an ‘older’ boat. If there are any then it is very small. But I guess we will find out as time goes on, but if there is anything it is very minor.”

Cascais Trophy, 15 05 2011 © Pedro MartnezAudi MedCup

Cascais Trophy, 15 05 2011 © Pedro MartnezAudi MedCup

“What is going to be critical here is day in day out there will be the potential for breakages and so we will be just looking to keep it all together, boat, equipment and the team itself.”

“It is the 40th anniversary of the Bríbon team, so a big year for us, and for me and the guys on the boat we just want to do a quality job and keep our heads up all the way through the season.”

The Audi MedCup Open Village opens Monday morning adjacent to the regatta site, by the Club Navale Cascais.

The official practice race for the TP52’s is on Tuesday with racing for that fleet starting Wednesday and the Soto 40’s start racing Thursday.

Programme, Cascais, Monday 16th May.

12:00 – boat christenings Audi Azzurra Sailing Team and Audi A1 Team Powered by ALL4ONE
13:00 – sailing: Audi Azzurra Sailing Team and Audi A1 Team Powered by ALL4ONE 
16:30 – Audi Sailing Talk – VIP area with Rolf Vrolijk and Audi design team.

2011 Rolex Big Boat Series in San Francisco

May 12, 2011

With San Francisco receiving extra attention from sailing fans courtesy of the America’s Cup, it comes as no surprise that the Bay will be bustling with additional activity this fall when the 2011 Rolex Big Boat Series gets underway. Scheduled for September 8-11 and hosted by St. Francis Yacht Club, the event is in its 47th year and shows no signs of slowing down. With the Farr 30s having designated the event as their world championship and the sport boat division returning for its second year, the Rolex Big Boat Series is perfectly positioned to give serious racers their chance to shine at the West Coast’s premier event.

J 105 sailing yachts pass Alcatraz -Rolex Big Boat Series San Francisco, CA, USA -Photo credit Rolex Daniel Forster

J 105 sailing yachts pass Alcatraz -Rolex Big Boat Series San Francisco, CA, USA -Photo credit Rolex Daniel Forster

“With the America’s Cup now coming to town, there is a whole new energy on the water and people are more eager to sail in the same venue,” said Chairman Norman Davant. “We are forecasting an excellent turnout.”

The Rolex Big Boat Series will also be the focal point of a newly created four-regatta series for IRC 52s and 40s, providing a venue for East and West Coast competitors to continue their established rivalries, or begin new ones. The Rolex Big Boat Series will be the second race of the series which starts with the Aldo Alessio Ocean Race (August 26-28. The third and fourth events in the series are the new West Coast Shootout (September 24-25) and the Great Pumpkin Regatta (October 29-30), considered a San Francisco classic.

“We announced the four-regatta series back in March 2011, and it promises to be a great way to bring even more enthusiasm to the Bay and attract East Coast competitors,” added Davant.

One of the movers and shakers in the Southern California IRC 52 fleet is Manouch Moshayedi (Newport Beach, Calif.), owner of Rio.  “It’s a great regatta, with consistent wind, and both the city and St. Francis Yacht Club are fantastic,” said Moshayedi, whose fleet is expecting about 12 boats come September. No stranger to the regatta, Moshayedi previously competed on his IMS 50 M-Project; this will be the first Rolex Big Boat Series in which Moshayedi will race on Rio. “The IRC 52 is a new boat for me, and as far as I can see it’s the most fun boat on the water today but also very technical; therefore, training and practice are crucial.”

Sailing yacht DAYENU J 120 class winner -Rolex Big Boat Series San Francisco, CA, USA -Photo credit Rolex Daniel Forster

Sailing yacht DAYENU J 120 class winner -Rolex Big Boat Series San Francisco, CA, USA -Photo credit Rolex Daniel Forster

Having raced as a class at the Rolex Big Boat Series for over a decade, the J/120 fleet will also be back to continue its tradition of making the event a final hurrah of the sailing season.  “We are a very competitive fleet, and there are superb sailors that come to this event,” said Donald Payan (Hillsborough, Calif.), who has been attending the regatta since the 1980s and was the J/120 class winner in 2010 on Dayenu.  “It’s all about consistency. Any little slip can drop you from first to fourth in the blink of an eye.  There is a premium on execution, and like a tango, every step has to be right.”

Many sailors return year after year for not only the strong competition but also the overall atmosphere of the event.  “The Rolex Big Boat Series is a fun regatta to be a part of,” said Payan.  “It’s a family reunion for the sailing community, and with the America’s Cup activity coming to the Bay we are going to see more people showing up to sail and view.”

The local J/105 fleet has also brought some serious talent in previous years, including Bruce Stone (San Francisco, Calif.), president of the San Francisco Marina Harbor Association and class winner in 2010 aboard Arbitrage.  Stone predicts that like most years, weather is everything, and an early September date can dish up anything from gales to zephyrs.   “The past few years have had some interesting conditions with either foggy days or some lighter winds, which made the tide calls quite significant,” said Stone, who has been participating in the regatta since 1985 and looks forward to another spirited year of racing. “It’s a wonderful event, with great race management and a perfect venue, which brings out more competitors so we have a full line-up of the best J/105s on the San Francisco Bay.”

More about Rolex Big Boat Series

The Rolex Big Boat Series annually attracts many world-caliber sailors, all of whom are eager to win one of the six specially engraved Rolex timepieces given to winners of the St. Francis Yacht Club’s Perpetual Trophies. From its inception, the Rolex Big Boat Series has showcased top sailing talent and boats. From the glory days of SORC, IOR and IMS to today’s Grand Prix and One Design classes, the Rolex Big Boat Series has continued to be the West Coast’s premier regatta where the best of the best meet for four days of challenging racing.

Two new yachts in the Audi 2011 TP52 Med Cup Challenge: Rán IV and Container

May 11, 2011

Lymington-based Green Marine, one of the world’s leading custom racing and high-performance cruising and superyacht builder specialists, has built and delivered two new contenders for the Audi 2011 TP52 Med Cup Challenge – yachts Rán IV and Container. Both yachts were designed by the renowned Judel Vrolik design office.

Sailing Yacht Rán IV - Audi 2011 TP52 Med Cup Challenge

Superyacht Rán IV, was the first boat that was completed in a bespoke female hull tool that was shared between both teams. With three victories and a total final placement of second overall at her first appearance at the Mapfre Palma Vela Regatta, S/Y Rán IV, which is helmed by her owner Niklas Zennström, has already demonstrated that she is a competitive contender.

Niklas Zennström has successfully campaigned his Green Marine build 72′ Mini Maxi Rán II for the last two years and after winning the 2010 world championships in this class he decided to take on the challenge to race against the pros in the TP52 circuit.

Rán team representative and project manager Chris Hosking, who has previously been involved in a number of TP52 campaigns, said after the first sea trials: “The Rán IV technical team together with Green Marine have delivered a boat that was designed and built to such a high level that we have not seen before.” Rán IV yacht will be the benchmark for the TP52 fleet this year, both for her technical finesse and for her stunning appearance.

Yacht Container - Audi 2011 TP52 Med Cup Challenge

Udo Schütz, German Entrepreneur and Yachting Legend, also decided to join the highly attractive TP52 box rule with his new sailing yacht Container. The Container was built using the Schütz state-of- the-art honeycomb technology – Cormaster. This was delivered in pre-formed panels to Green Marine to exactly fit the hull and deck shapes.

Tom Swift, representative and project manager for team Container, managed to get the project completed in record time. The boat was delivered directly to Cascais, Portugalas planned on schedule. Tom said:  “Thanks to the great commitment and support from Green Marine, we could deliver the boat well in time and at a more complete state than any other racing boat I have seen fresh from a yard.”

Nominated as skipper and helmsman again for S/Y Container is Markus Wieser, the current European Champion and second place finisher of the World Championship in the Dragon class.

Marcel Müller, Managing Director at Green Marine, said: “The 2011 Audi Med Cup will be without doubt the most competitive mono hull racing series this summer. We are looking forward to see some thrilling racing action with these fantastic boats and we are exited to have these two strong contenders on the starting line.”

Nespresso Cup 2011: Victory for Sailing Yacht Indio and S/Y Ryokan 2 in Portofino

May 10, 2011

The second edition of the Nespresso Cup came to a conclusion in Portofino with Andrea Recordati’s sailing yacht INDIO delivering a near emphatic victory in the Overall Division to lift the stylish Nespresso Cup Trophy, whilst Philippe Ligier’s Wally yacht Ryokan 2 snatched victory from S/Y INTI in the Performance Division in the very final race.

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino - Day 4  Photo  Ben Thouard  Nespresso Cup

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino - Day 4 Photo Ben Thouard Nespresso Cup

Tricky light winds dominated the three-day Nespresso Cup regatta which set the stage for a testing regatta: “We had a fantastic Nespresso Cup here in Portofino,” said Jochen Schüman, S/Y Magic Carpet2 tactician and Nespresso Cup Race Ambassador. The pressure was on the Wally tacticians to deliver the right calls, as ‘wind spotters’ scaled the masts in search of more wind: “We were lucky even though we had very light weather that we could finish four races in sunshine, and just enough breeze. Conditions have been difficult with a lot of chances for passing lanes so we had quite different results and it stayed open until the very last day.”

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino - Day 4  Photo  Ben Thouard  Nespresso Cup

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino - Day 4 Photo Ben Thouard Nespresso Cup

In the Overall Division, the 30.50m sail yacht Indio took control early in the regatta with three race victories, only on the final day did they concede a win to Claus-Peter Offen’s Y3K. “I am delighted as this is the first race of the season for us,” said Andrea Recordati. “It was an unexpected result, especially the way we won it which was pretty amazing. This is my second Nespresso Cup and this year I turned out with my full crew.” Indio’s multi-national crew is full of America’s Cup, Olympic and Volvo Ocean Race talent with the likes of Philippe Presti on tactics and Marc Lagesse navigating. “We had great weather and like Luca [Bassani, Wally Founder] said it was very technical racing because the first day was good with 10-11 knots but the last couple of days we only had six knots or less which made it very difficult, very tactical and all about teamwork and getting it right all the time which is more difficult.”

With Overall victory almost guaranteed for sailing yacht  INDIO as the starting gun went, yacht Y3K and Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones’ S/Y Magic Carpet2 were locked in a dual to secure second place overall. Today it was Y3K’s turn for victory crossing the line ahead of 2010 Nespresso Cup winners, Magic Carpet2.

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino - Day 4  Photo  Ben Thouard  Nespresso Cup

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino - Day 4 Photo Ben Thouard Nespresso Cup

As the Wally Yachts headed out to start line today, the much-anticipated duel between the all-French team on Ryokan 2 and the Italian team on INTI in the Performance Division got underway. Philippe Ligier’s crew on Ryokan 2 knew that it was likely only one race would be completed, and they would only have one chance to beat the INTI team on the water to secure victory. “It was difficult for us because our boat is better when the wind is very strong because we have the canting keel so in this kind of weather makes it very difficult,” said Ligier. But despite these disadvantages the French team, that included tactician François Brenac and navigator Olivier Douillard, rose to the challenge: “This year we have won in very low winds, it was very difficult but we had a nice navigation and tactics,” concluded a very satisfied Ligier

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino - Day 4  Photo  Ben Thouard  Nespresso Cup

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino - Day 4 Photo Ben Thouard Nespresso Cup

Carlo Croce, President of the Yacht Club Italian summed up the regatta perfectly: “It has been a fantastic weekend here in Portofino for the Nespresso Cup. We managed four races in three days and we have been lucky, as in Portofino this often happens due to the lack of wind but the racing has been really close. It is the second year that we complete the full schedule of the Nespresso Cup and we as the event hosts are proud of this.”

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - Onboard Indio, winner of the 2011 NESPRESSO CUP  Photo  Guilain Grenier  Nespresso Cup

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - Onboard Indio, winner of the 2011 NESPRESSO CUP Photo Guilain Grenier Nespresso Cup

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - Onboard Indio, winner of the 2011 NESPRESSO CUP  Photo  Guilain Grenier  Nespresso Cup

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - Onboard Indio, winner of the 2011 NESPRESSO CUP Photo Guilain Grenier Nespresso Cup

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - Prizegiving Photo Guilain Grenier Nespresso Cup

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - Prizegiving Photo Guilain Grenier Nespresso Cup

Nespresso Cup Final Results 8TH May, 2011

Overall Results After 4 Races
Pstn / Boat Name / Race Results / Points
1st Indio 1-1-1-3 = 6 points
2nd Y3K 3-2-2-1 = 8 points
3rd Magic Carpet2 2-3-3-2 = 10 points
4th Dark Shardow (P) 4-4-4-4 = 16 points
5th Esense (P) DNS-DNS-DNS-DNS = 24 points

Performance Division Results After 4 Races
Pstn / Boat Name / Race Results / Points
1st Ryokan 2 2-1-2-1 = 6 points
2nd Inti 1-2-1-2 = 6 points
3rd Dark Shadow 4-3-4-3 = 14 points
4th Kenora 3-4-3-4 = 14 points
5th Esense DNS-DNS-DNS-DNS = 24 points

List of Entries : Nespresso Cup 2011
Name / Owner / Length
Dark Shadow / André-Jacques Auberton-Hervè / 30.45m
Esense / Holding Montenegro / 43.70m
Kenora / Long Beach Ltd / 32.72m
Indio / Andrea Recordati / 30.50m
Inti / Lauro Buoro / 24.00m
Magic Carpet2 / Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones / 29.00m
Ryokan 2 / Philippe Ligier / 24.00m
Y3K / Claus-Peter Offen / 30.50m

Nespresso Cup 2011 Day 2: Sailing yacht INDIO strengthens its position to claim trophy

May 10, 2011

The battle lines have been drawn for the final day of racing for the Nespresso Cup tomorrow after today’s penultimate day produced only one race in the light conditions of Portofino. Andrea Recordati’s sailing yacht INDIO scored another victory to claim three wins from the three races so far in the Overall Division, and strengthen their position at the top of the Nespresso Cup overall leaderboard ahead of Y3K and S/Y Magic Carpet2. “At the first cross we were behind Y3K but we kept going on the left-side and it was good so we took the lead on the first leg which we maintained to the end,” said Carlo Torre, INDIO’s yacht manager.

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - 2nd Racing Day Photo  Ben Thouard  Nespresso Cup

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - 2nd Racing Day Photo Ben Thouard Nespresso Cup

The race committee of the Yacht Club Italiano postponed the start of the race to allow the wind to increase, getting the windward/ leeward race underway at 12h20 in around 5-6 knots of south-easterly breeze. But the light conditions remained testing for the Wally crews and, in particular, the tacticians who were constantly looking for the shifts and pressure to gain an advantage as Y3K skipper Claus-Peter Offen explained: “We were the very first boat out at the start, we went to the right side but the left side was favoured so INDIO profited from a bit more breeze. It was very, very tricky indeed, and on the second windward leg Magic Carpet2 suffered a bit on the wrong side and we passed inside. It was very close sailing.”

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - 2nd Racing Day Photo  Ben Thouard  Nespresso Cup

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - 2nd Racing Day Photo Ben Thouard Nespresso Cup

For Magic Carpet2 their third place was a disappointment which now puts them one point behind their main opponent Y3K: “The conditions weren’t ideal for us against the two larger Wallys,” explained Jochen Schüman, tactician and Nespresso Cup Race Ambassador. “The gamble on the second upwind leg dropped us to third which was hard – no real mistake, just less breeze in different spots so Y3K got passed us. We’re not very happy but we didn’t know how to do better.”

In the Performance Division, Lauro Buoro’s all-Italian team on INTI claimed today’s victory against Philippe Ligier’s all-French team on Ryokan 2 but with only one point separating the two Wally’s, this contest is far from over: “It’s going to be tough tomorrow because if the forecast is even lighter than today, we are pretty tight with Ryokan 2,” said tactician, Alberto Barovier. “We have to control them and ensure no one gets in between.” The crew of Kenora, the largest competing Wally Sailing Yacht at 32.72m, competing in the Performance Division enjoyed today’s race to overhaul Sailing yacht Dark Shadow for third place.

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - 2nd Racing Day Photo  Ben Thouard  Nespresso Cup

NESPRESSO CUP 2011 - 2nd Racing Day Photo Ben Thouard Nespresso Cup

Whilst INDIO has what seems an unassailable lead going into the final day of the Nespresso Cup, the strategies of Y3K and Magic Carpet2 are clear as they contest to be on the podium in the Overall Division: “In these circumstances we have to concentrate to defend our second position from our main opponent Magic Carpet2 who is just 1 point behind and that can change quickly,” concluded Offen.

Although these professional and Corinthian teams know it is never over until it’s over as INDIO’s Carlo Torre pointed out: “We have a good margin in terms of points with three wins but obviously it’s easy with light and shifty winds that you can pass easily from first to last. All the boats have good tacticians, always searching for the good spot. We cannot be conservative, we have to attack.”

Grant Dalton, Managing Director of Emirates Team New Zealand, arrived in Portofino today to join the Nespresso Cup Ambassadors Francesco de Angelis, Loick Peyron, Samantha Davies and Jochen Schüman. Emirates Team New Zealand officially confirmed that the Kiwi syndicate would be challenging for the 34th America’s Cup supported by Nespresso. “Emirates Team New Zealand is a passionate kind of culture. We do our racing for simply only one reason and we believe we are reasonably good at it; we have got a brand that is almost a market leader now in the sport,” said Dalton. “And I think you can say the same things about Nespresso. They are absolutely market leaders and they are growing quickly. The single thing that sticks in my mind, from the very first contact I had, is that culturally they are similar type of people-focused company, aiming at quality and service and that is the same as us. We are actually in a service industry trying to service the sponsors, service the media and service our core fan base.”

Nespresso Cup Day 2 Results 7th May, 2011

Overall Results After 3 Races – Provisional
Pstn / Boat Name / Race Results / Points
1st Indio 1-1-1 = 3 points
2nd Y3K 3-2-2 = 7 points
3rd Magic Carpet2 2-3-3 = 8 points
4th Dark Shardow (P) 4-4-4 = 12 points
5th Esense (P) DNS-DNS-DNS = 18 points

Performance Division Results After 2 Races – Provisional
Pstn / Boat Name / Race Results / Points
1st Inti 1-2-1 = 4 points
2nd Ryokan 2 2-1-2 = 5 points
3rd Kenora 3-4-3 = 10 points
4th Dark Shadow 4-3-4 = 11 points
5th Esense DNS-DNS-DNS = 18 points

List of Entrie : Nespresso Cup 2011
Name / Owner / Length
Dark Shadow / André-Jacques Auberton-Hervè / 30.45m
Esense / Holding Montenegro / 43.70m
Kenora / Long Beach Ltd / 32.72m
Indio / Andrea Recordati / 30.50m
Inti / Lauro Buoro / 24.00m
Magic Carpet2 / Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones / 29.00m
Ryokan 2 / Philippe Ligier / 24.00m
Y3K / Claus-Peter Offen / 30.50m

America’s Cup to Revolutionize Live Sports Sailing Coverage

May 09, 2011

Amercia's Cup Helicopter and Catamaran in Auckland

Amercia's Cup Helicopter and Catamaran in Auckland

Not widely considered an extreme sport, sailing is about to gain a new whole audience as the new America’s Cup reveals just how heart-pounding and dangerous the sport can be.

Connecting viewers to the racing in ways not previously possible, the America’s Cup will transform the way people see the sport. With breakthrough graphics, athlete’s view cameras and onboard microphones, viewers will see and hear the quick decisions being made, the athleticism of the sailors, the raw power of the boats – live, as the teams fly over the water as speeds of up to 35 mph.

“Extreme sport lovers will flock to this new America’s Cup because of the broadcast,” said Richard Worth, Chairman, America’s Cup Event Authority (ACEA). “From heart-pounding maneuvers at breakneck speeds to capsizes that result in two-story falls for the athletes, viewers will not just see the action, they will feel like they are in it.”

The backbone of this new experience is also a breakthrough in sports broadcasting – augmented reality from a helicopter. This will be the first time live graphic insertions have been done from a moving platform.

Developed by the same team that developed the yellow first-down line widely used in the broadcast of American football and the Race/FX tracking and highlighting system used in NASCAR, this revolutionary graphics system will have a similar effect on the America’s Cup, connecting new audiences to the sport by creating greater understanding. The superimposed graphic elements will be used as technical aids for viewers, such as ahead-behind lines that can enable audiences to clearly see who is leading the race.

“The America’s Cup has always pushed the technology envelope throughout its history,” said Stan Honey, Director of Technology, ACEA. “Previous America’s Cup broadcasts have featured graphics on an animated view of the race. This next step in the evolution is intended to allow broadcasters to use graphic elements to explain the sport, while enabling viewers to simultaneously see the live action of the race.”

Driven by a GPS system that can track the America’s Cup catamarans to within a two-centimeter accuracy on the race course, event organizers quickly saw the opportunity to leverage the system for on-the-water management of the sport. Telemetering of the course will allow for rapid movement of marks and controlling course limits, while use of real-time overlap and zone-entry determinations will enable umpires to make the most accurate decisions ever possible.

“From a technology point of view, it’s a completely new world for us; the way it’s going to be umpired, the way the race management will work. But the vision to transform this next Cup is going to soon be a reality,” said Mitch Booth, Skipper, China Team. “We’ve always believed in it, we expected it would be possible, but to prove to the sailing world and the sporting world that now it can be done is something we’re supporting fully.”

The GPS system was just one of several that received a thorough shakedown in New Zealand through test period involving America’s Cup teams from United States, Sweden, China and New Zealand.  Event organizers plan to stage additional test sessions in Europe and North America as they prepare for the inaugural America’s Cup World Series event in Cascais, Portugal this August.

The AC World Series is a regular circuit of regattas that will bring America’s Cup-level racing and experience to top international venues. Some of the world’s top athletes will test their physical strength, endurance and mental agility as they compete over a punishing nine days for the chance to win the first AC World Series.

Televised to expose millions more fans to the sport of high-performance sailing, the AC World Series will feature both fleet and match racing at each event. At the end of each AC World Series season, a champion will be crowned. The AC World Series events provide the fans the only opportunity to see all of the America’s Cup competitors racing together.

Nespresso Cup 2011: Day 1 serves up perfect blend of racing

May 09, 2011

The opening day of the Nespresso Cup 2011 in Portofino, produced some close racing and magnificent battles in both divisions. “Racing today was good weather-wise,” said Nespresso Cup Race Ambassador Francesco de Angelis. “Sunny with a good breeze and we saw an interesting second race because there were some wind shifts which made it a bit more difficult.” In the Overall Division it was sailing yacht Indio (30.50m) that came out on top, winning both races despite the best efforts of S/Y Magic Carpet2 and yacht Y3K to break their winning form: “We had good starts in both races, Y3K was ahead of us both times,” said Indio’s Miguel Costa. “It was very tight racing but we managed to pass them both times – the second one was pretty nice because we rolled them in a type of America’s Cup style.” With tactician Philippe Presti and mast man Shannon Falcone, both veterans of three America’s Cup campaigns, on board it is no surprise to see some America’s Cup moves coming into play. “The tactician and the skipper both did a fantastic job. It is very even between us, Y3K and Magic Carpet2 – it’s been like that all last year,” concluded Costa. Less than three minutes separated these top three boats in the 1 hour, 40 minute opening race, and just 1 minute and 18 seconds in the second slightly shorter race.

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino (ITA) - 06052011 Photo  Guilain Grenier  Nespresso Cup

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino (ITA) - 06052011 Photo Guilain Grenier Nespresso Cup

In the Performance Division, which in essence allows the smaller and older yachts to remain competitive, it was a battle between the all-French team of Ryokan 2 and the all-Italian team of INTI. Lauro Buoro’s team scored the first win before Philippe Ligier’s team that has a diverse and depth of Olympic and match racing talent bounced back.

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino (ITA) - 06/05/2011 Photo  Guilain Grenier  Nespresso Cup

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino (ITA) - 06/05/2011 Photo Guilain Grenier Nespresso Cup

Tomorrow is another day for Jochen Schüman, Nespresso Cup Race Ambassador and tactician on Magic Carpet2 who expects his talented crew to rally: “We have to have good starts then I think we stand a good chance as in both races today we managed to gain back a little. Everything is there we just need to make the right decisions at the start.”

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino (ITA) - 06052011 Photo  Guilain Grenier  Nespresso Cup

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino (ITA) - 06052011 Photo Guilain Grenier Nespresso Cup

Whilst Samantha Davies, reveled in her first-time on board a Wally Yacht, alongside Francesco de Angelis and Loick Peyron, it was a totally different experience to yesterday when leading Italian chef, Emanuele Scarello, prepared a gastronomical feast for the Ambassadors. Today the Nespresso Cup Ambassadors returned the favour by taking Emanuele Scarello sailing for the first time: “For me it was the first time on a Wally and the first time with Francesco and I hope today is not the last time! In the kitchen it is more simple no wind, no sea only the cook!” said Scarello.

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino (ITA) - 06052011 Photo  Guilain Grenier  Nespresso Cup

Nespresso Cup 2011 - Portofino (ITA) - 06052011 Photo Guilain Grenier Nespresso Cup

Nespresso Cup Day 1 Results 6th May, 2011

Overall Results After 2 Races – Provisional

Pstn / Boat Name / Race Results / Points
1st Indio 1-1 = 2 points
2nd Y3K 3-2 = 5 points
3rd Magic Carpet2 2-3 = 5 points
4th Sailing yacht Dark Shadow (P) 4-4 = 8 points
5th Esense (P) DNS = 12 points

Performance Division Results After 2 Races – Provisional

Pstn / Boat Name / Race Results / Points
1st Ryokan 2 2-1 = 3 points
2nd Inti 1-2 = 3 points
3rd Dark Shadow 4-3 = 7 points
4th Kenora 3-4 = 7 points
5th Esense DNS = 12 points

List of Entries : Nespresso Cup 2011

Name / Owner / Length

Dark Shadow / André-Jacques Auberton-Hervè / 30.45m
Esense / Holding Montenegro / 43.70m
Kenora / Long Beach Ltd / 32.72m
Indio / Andrea Recordati / 30.50m
Inti / Lauro Buoro / 24.00m
Magic Carpet2 / Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones / 29.00m
Ryokan 2 / Philippe Ligier / 24.00m
Y3K / Claus-Peter Offen / 30.50m

US SAILING’s Rolex Yachtsman & Yachtswoman of the Year Awards held in San Francisco

May 06, 2011

For U.S. sailors in northern latitudes, the yacht club commissioning ceremonies taking place over the next few weekends are just the latest signal that the 2011 sailing season is about to kick into high gear.  And while it may be too early to place odds on which outstanding male and female sailor will ultimately be recognized as US SAILING’s 2011 Rolex Yachtsman or Yachtswoman of the Year, it has been announced that 32nd presentation of the awards will take place at St. Francis Yacht Club (San Francisco, Calif.) in February, 2012. 

St Francis Yacht Club - Photo Credit Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year

St Francis Yacht Club - Photo Credit Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year

The move to the west coast will start a new tradition of alternating the award’s ceremonies between St. Francis and New York Yacht Club’s iconic Manhattan clubhouse where the awards have been held since Rolex began sponsoring them in 1980.  Founded in 1927, St. Francis Yacht Club was built on a site rich in local lore; its yacht harbor having gotten it’s start as part of the Panama Pacific Exposition of 1915 to mark the opening of the Panama Canal.  Over the years the club has been host to many prestigious national and international sailing championships, and is home to the West Coast’s premiere regatta, the Rolex Big Boat Series.

“St. Francis Yacht Club will be a spectacular west coast venue for US SAILING’s Rolex Yachtsman & Yachtswoman of the Year Awards,” said Gary Jobson, President of US SAILING.  “For the first time in the award’s 50-year history the presentation will be held outside of New York City allowing more sailors to participate in recognizing the outstanding achievers in our sport.”

The process of determining the 2012 award winners will be initiated on Friday, September 30, 2011, when US SAILING members will be invited to make nominations online.  From there a shortlist of nominees will be reviewed by a panel of noted sailing journalists who discuss the merits of each nominee and vote to determine US SAILING’s 2011 Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year.  The ultimate winners will be announced in mid-January and honored in February, 2012, during a luncheon at St. Francis Yacht Club, when they will be presented with Rolex timepieces.

Rolex Yachtsman & Yachtswoman of the Year Awards Trophy

Rolex Yachtsman & Yachtswoman of the Year Awards Trophy

Established in 1961 by US SAILING and sponsored by Rolex Watch, U.S.A. since 1980, the annual presentation of US SAILING’s Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year awards are considered the sport’s ultimate recognition of an individual’s outstanding on-the-water achievements for the calendar year.  Over its history the coveted award has been presented to 38 men and 32 women, including these notable sailors who have claimed the honor multiple times:  Ed Adams, Betsy Alison, Sally Barkow, Dennis Conner, JJ Isler, Allison Jolly, John Kostecki, Buddy Melges, Ken Read, Cory Sertl, Lynne Shore, Jody Swanson, Anna Tunnicliffe and Ted Turner. 

About Rolex Watch U.S.A.

Since Rolex Watch U.S.A. first presented timepieces to America’s Cup defenders in 1958, the company has consistently recognized and encouraged excellence in every important arena of competitive sailing, including US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics preparation, US SAILING championships, disabled sailing, offshore, one-design and women’s events.

About US SAILING

The United States Sailing Association (US SAILING), the national governing body for sailing, provides leadership, integrity, and growth for the sport in the United States. Founded in 1897 and headquartered in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, US SAILING is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization. US SAILING offers training and education programs for instructors and race officials, supports a wide range of sailing organizations and communities, issues offshore rating certificates, and provides administration and oversight of competitive sailing across the country, including National Championships and the US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics.