3 August 2020 – Surfing is back at The Ranch! 11th Hour Racing goes offshore while RORC goes virtual, eSailGP qualifiers heat up, Tokoloshe II and PowerPlay triumph in Race the Wight, The Prada Cup race conditions are published and South African, Nicola Sadler stands tall on the Optimist podium at the Spanish National Championships.
11th Hour Racing Team announces it’s training crew
11th Hour Racing Team announced the addition of several high-profile sailors to its training crew ahead of their France to Newport 2020 Transatlantic with five-time Ocean Race veteran Simon Fisher (UK) joining the team in France, along with past America’s Cup and SailGP winner Kyle Langford (AUS) and 2017-18 Ocean Race participant Emily Nagel (Bermuda).
The trio has come together in Brittany with skipper Charlie Enright, onboard reporter Amory Ross and Justin Shaffer, who oversees special projects, to prepare for the team’s upcoming transatlantic. The departure from Concarneau, France to Newport, Rhode Island, is scheduled for Saturday as 11th Hour Racing Team kicks off its two-year preparation plan for the next edition of The Ocean Race in 2022-2023.
Veteran offshore racer Fisher, also known within the sport as SiFi, was a Volvo Ocean Race trophy winner in 2014-15 as navigator of Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing and sailed alongside Enright and Towill in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race with Vestas 11th Hour Racing. Originally from Essex, UK, he is now based out of Spain and southern England.
Langford, from Australia, sailed every offshore leg with third-place finisher Team Brunel from the Netherlands in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. Prior to that, he was a member of Oracle Team USA in the 2017 America’s Cup, after winning the 2013 America’s Cup with Oracle. In 2019, Langford captured the inaugural SailGP title with Australia SailGP Team as wing trimmer and more recently has been on the podium at the International Moth World Championships. When not racing, he makes his home in Stockholm, Sweden.
Nagel is a trained naval architect who had her first taste of The Ocean Race in 2017-18 as part of Team AkzoNobel. Hailing from Bermuda, Nagel has worked for America’s Cup teams and SailGP on the technical and design side and has also represented Great Britain at European and World Championship sailing events. She currently resides in Weymouth, UK, where she campaigns her foiling moth in her spare time.
With oversight of special projects, Shaffer specifically focuses on technology, fiber optics and performance analysis for 11th Hour Racing Team, while Ross handles the role of the onboard reporter as videographer and photographer, a key role during the nine months of The Ocean Race.
“We have pulled together a wealth of experience and talent for this transatlantic,” said 11th Hour Racing Team skipper Enright. “We are obviously itching to get miles and offshore training under our belts with the delays we’ve had this year. This is an experienced crew and a dynamic training group that brings together a broad range of skills as we look ahead to 2022.”
Langford, Ross and Enright were together for the team’s transatlantic sail from Brazil to France late last year. The addition of Fisher, Shaffer and Nagel creates a new mix of six sailors for this training in which the team will put to the test a next-generation wing foil and other new systems from the boat’s recent refit.a
“We have built a foil with the latest generation of technology,” said Team CEO Mark Towill. “The new T-foil design basically does two things: creates lift and reduces leeway. During the transatlantic, we will be testing out the new rake system with different sail combinations.”
“It’s very important to test these concepts in reality and validate the projected performance against actual data. This learning process is very important in our efforts to have the most competitive platform for The Ocean Race in two years time,” added Towill.
Once the team arrives in Rhode Island, the sailors will base themselves out of Newport for a fall season of offshore training, sea trials and on-land activations and sustainability initiatives.
“While the one year postponement of the race has changed our timelines, planning and the location of our training base for the short term, we think having the next few months in Newport gives us a great jumping off point to begin sailing and working together as a unit,” added Enright. “Our emphasis is on training safely and testing new systems with the goal of putting the best and fastest possible team at the start line of The Ocean Race in Alicante, Spain in 2022.”
Each member of the training team will go through the team’s sustainability induction process highlighting the team’s parallel mission to win the next edition of The Ocean Race while making a commitment to sustainable operations and inspiring sailors and sports fans. Non-sailing team events in Newport will also a team “Homecoming” to connect with fans during a socially-distant event and The Newport Ocean Summit, a virtual gathering of scientists, business leaders and policy-makers around the latest ocean health issues.
The race conditions of the PRADA Cup, the Challengers Selection Series to be held in January and February 2021 in Auckland, New Zealand, have been published. The winner of the PRADA Cup will challenge the Defender, Emirates Team New Zealand in the 36th America’s Cup presented by PRADA Final Match, scheduled from March 6 to March 21 2021. To win the America’s Cup, you first have to win the PRADA Cup.
The PRADA Cup will consist of four round robin of three races each, a seven-race semi-final and a 13-race final between the two leading teams. Each win scores one point. The Challenger with the highest score at the end of the round robins will automatically access the PRADA Cup Final; the remaining two teams will race again in the semi-final and the first to win four races will qualify for the final. The first team to score seven points in the final will win the PRADA Cup, and will challenge the Defender, Emirates Team New Zealand, in the final match of the 36th America’s Cup presented by PRADA.
For the 22nd edition, the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez has been extended to two weeks, from September 26 to October 9. The most beautiful boats in the world will meet, and the largest classic and modern boats will now benefit from their own event.
During the first week of September 26 to October 3, the event will welcome both classic and modern boats, as usual, but up to a size limit except for specific classes. The usual program remains unchanged, apart from the awards ceremony which is scheduled for the evening of Saturday 3.
During the week of October 5 to 9, make way for large modern and classic boats, which will benefit from specific routes with all departures in front of the city of Saint-Tropez. In contention will be the Wallys, the Maxi and Super Maxi group of the IRCA, or the IRC1 Loro Piana for the modern boats as well as the large schooners of the Schooners class or the Grands Traditions for the classic boats. Prize giving will be on Friday October 9th.
About 250 boats will participate in the first week and between 30 and 50 “big boats” in the second week.
Take a dry-run of the new Rolex Fastnet Racecourse with Virtual Regatta
Just over a year out from the August 2021 start of the race proper, potential competitors, armchair sailors and gamer enthusiasts from all over the world will have the opportunity to try their hand at competing on the new course for the Rolex Fastnet Race, in the online game created by Virtual Regatta.
A race around the Isle of Wight on Saturday 1st August marked the return to competitive racing at the Royal Ocean Racing Club, the first since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
133 boats took part with South African, Mike Bartholomew’s Tokoloshe II taking the double win for Monohull Line Honours and the overall win after IRC time correction. Multihull Line Honours went to PowerPlay, helmed by Peter Cunningham.
Class winners included; Giovanni Belgrano’s Whooper which was also second overall; Ross Applebey’s Scarlet Oyster, Jim Driver’s Chilli Pepper and Richard Palmer’s Jangada. However, the real race winners were the NHS and the Scaramouche Sailing Trust, with over £5000 (all entry fees) going to the noble causes.
The race of approximately 50nm started from the Royal Yacht Squadron Line with a course anti-clockwise around the Isle of Wight. Approaching high tide, the island shore was favoured by much of the fleet due to tidal conditions. After beating to the Needles, the fleet turned downwind into the adverse current. Staying close to the island shore worked for many successful teams. As the breeze clocked a little to the south, there was little in the way of wind shadow to the east of the island. The fleet entered the Eastern Solent, where a fresh breeze made for a fast beat to the finish.
Mike Bartholomew’s GP42 Tokoloshe II was the overall winner of the race and topped the podium for IRC One ahead of two other FAST40+ yachts. RORC Vice Commodore James Neville racing INO XXX and Ed Fishwick’s Redshift, were second and third in class.
Tokoloshe’s David Bartholomew commented: “We got a good start and made The Needles in good shape, staying inshore required a lot of gybes, and flatwater definitely helped. It was a quick race for us, I think our fastest is about five hours and that was with a crew of ten. So, to get around in five hours and thirty minutes, with just six crew, was a great effort.”
MOD70 PowerPlay, skippered by Ned Collier Wakefield, with Peter Cunningham on the tiller also did the double. Taking Monohull Line Honours and the win after MOCRA time correction. James Holder’s Dazcat Slinky Malinki was second and Al Wood’s Dragonfly was third in the MOCRA Class.
“I have been in quarantine for 14 days, so that was a release!” smiled Peter Cunningham. “That is the first time I have raced around the island. The sun was shining, a beautiful day, a great boat, top crew and a fun race. This was a fantastic way to come out of quarantine. We plan to do more RORC racing during August and September.”
Over 40 yachts raced with just two crew in IRC Two-handed. Richard Palmer racing JPK 10.10 Jangada, with Jeremy Waitt, won the contest. Nigel de Quervain Colley’s Sun Fast 3300 Fastrack XII was second with Jeffrey Knapman’s MG335 Virago third. An electrical failure onboard Fastrack XII certainly hampered the team but Jangada scored a notable victory over Fastrak XII, sailed by Olympic hopeful Henry Bomby and Double Olympic Gold medallist, Shirley Robertson.
“It was great to be back out racing, and to win in a really competitive fleet is great,” commented Jangada’s Richard Palmer. “We have a symmetrical set up downwind, and that really worked for us, especially staying out of the tide on the southside of the island. However, we were wary of yachts with rights that could have forced us out into the current. All in all, the conditions definitely suited Jangada.”
Ross Applebey’s Oyster 48 Scarlet Oyster was the winner of IRC Two-handed beating to JPK 1180s;
Thomas Kneen’s Sunrise and Ed Bell’s Dawn Treader.
Jim Driver’s Sun Fast 3300 Chilli Pepper took the win in IRC Three in their maiden race. Chilli Pepper was ahead of two J/112 Elegance yachts; Happy Daize sailed by James Chalmers and Bruce Huber’s Xanaboo. Jim Driver was racing Chilli Pepper with his daughter Ellie and a long-time sailing friend Philip Barnes.
IRC Four was won by Giovanni Belgrano’s classic sloop Whooper. Ian Handley’s Mustang MK2 Gr8 Banter was second in class, and notably third overall for the race. Sam and Martin Pearson, racing Dehler 33 Ruthless were third in class.
“We are tired but delighted to win our class and come so close to winning overall is a good result. We live here, it’s our patch, and it’s nice to race around the island. I always race Whooper with friends and we always go inside at the Needles, and on the southside, no one goes where we go. We are happy, we have had a great day!”
Racing with the Royal Ocean Racing Club continues with the second race of the mini-series, scheduled to start on Saturday 15th August.
Campeonato España Optimist 2020
FIRST BRITISH PLAYER QUALIFIES FOR ESAILGP GRAND FINAL
Great Britain’s Déjà Vu beats 6,957 players to win New York eSailGP
New York was the setting for the fifth qualifying event in the eSailGP 2020 Championship and not unlike the real-life event in Season 1, there were high speed and high drama. The eventual winner Déjà Vu hit 52.6 knots in the final match race against Javinho of Spain to secure Great Britain’s first spot in the eSailGP Grand Final on August 14.
Although the SailGP teams could not be there in person in 2020, the iconic venue tested the skills of the 6,957 players who battled it out for a chance to qualify for the eSailGP Grand Final. With three different race winners across the first three races, it was a close-fought battle to make the final match race.
However, taking on the SailGP athletes one week earlier in the Athletes vs Gamers series proved a good training ground for Déjà Vu. The Scot from Aberdeen made it two for two – not only getting the better of the SailGP athletes but also the other seven finalists. Never finishing outside the top three, Déjà Vu convincingly won the match race – leading from start to finish – to earn his place in the Grand Final.
Déjà Vu said: “I am really pleased to qualify for the eSailGP Grand Final. It definitely helped to get some extra practice in taking on the athletes last week and I really enjoyed getting the chance to race them. The eF50 is much more difficult to sail than other boats I have raced, so I really focused on being more tactical and I think this is something that really paid off.”
Launched in partnership with Virtual Regatta and World Sailing, the championship features seven qualification events over the course of the season, with each respective winner clinching a spot in the eSailGP Grand Final. The winner of the eSailGP Grand Final not only gets automatic qualification to the eSailing World Championship but also a ride onboard an F50 in real life when the SailGP season restarts in 2021.
Watch the replay of New York eSailGP here. The next event is Pop-Up 3 with qualifying starting on July 31. The final opportunity to qualify for the eSailGP Grand Final will be Cowes, August 6-13. eSailGP can be played on desktop, iOS and Android.
2020 eSailGP Championship Schedule (remaining events)
Qualifier: August 6 -13
Final: August 13
World Surf League Announces Return to Live Competition with
Michelob ULTRA Pure Gold Rumble at The Ranch
On August 9, live competitive surfing is back again. Believe it. In a one-day, winner-take-all showdown at the Surf Ranch, eight teams of the world’s best surfers will enter and only one will rise from the dust victorious. There will be airs and there will be long, perfect barrels. There will be a live surf contest happening right before your eyes for the first time in months.
Filipe Toledo, Caroline Marks, Kolohe Andino, and Sage Erickson are already confirmed. The final roster of challengers will be revealed over the next week. Clear your schedules. The Michelob ULTRA Pure Gold Rumble At The Ranch is coming.
[The Weekend Wrap-up 3 August 2020]