Ministers today announced £7.5million of Government funding to support Sir Ben Ainslie’s America’s Cup team and their proposal to be based on the Camber in Portsmouth.
The announcement took place today at 10 Downing Street in the presence of the Prime Minister David Cameron, who said: ‘Sir Ben Ainslie’s project is truly fantastic news for Portsmouth and the Solent.
‘It will not only build on Portsmouth’s global reputation as a centre of marine and maritime excellence but will also deliver a real sporting and economic boost to the UK.
‘It is a great example of our long-term plan – creating jobs as well as opportunities for young people to develop their skills through apprenticeships.
‘This is an exciting and historic challenge and I hope the whole country can get behind Sir Ben’s campaign.’
BAR Team Principal and four-time Olympic gold medallist, Sir Ben said: ‘Portsmouth has a great maritime heritage and we felt it was a natural home for the team’s permanent base in the UK.
‘There is excellent access to the water for the team’s training and to host future America’s Cup events, with fantastic spectator viewpoints.
‘We hope through our journey to bring the Cup home to Britain we will inspire more young people to get involved in the sport, along with supporting the growth of the marine sector in the Solent area to match the country’s F1 innovation hub.’
The headquarters will initially employ about 90 people, with many more potential jobs in the supply chain.
It will become the focal point for the design, construction and development of the team’s boats and will also provide sports science and fitness facilities.
An apprenticeship and training scheme will ensure the site is sustainable and there will be a drive to ensure the project acts as a catalyst to encourage participation in the sport of sailing, all areas of the marine industry and develop the talent of the future.
The project has the potential to bring significant economic and sporting benefits to the UK, particularly for Portsmouth and the wider Solent area. A recent report on Team New Zealand suggested that its base in Auckland created 1,000 jobs and brought an $88million boost to the local economy.
A visitor centre showcasing the sport, innovation, technology and sustainability will be at the heart of the base, and will welcome schools and community groups. Visitors will experience the construction and on-going operation of the team’s America’s Cup boats first-hand.
In accordance with the team’s sustainability goals – monitored and supported by 11th Hour Racing Inc. – the base will be built to the BREEAM Excellent standard.
Construction work will start immediately, with planned completion in May 2015. Jonathan Goring will be responsible for the project at Ben Ainslie Racing, and he will run a completely separate team and budget to ensure that the base construction has no impact on the crucial drive to win the America’s Cup in 2017.
Goring was Managing Director of Capita Symonds, involved in the London 2012 Olympics, and CEO of Capita’s successful consortium that was selected to run the Defence Infrastructure Organisation.
See full article and watch Ben Ainslie Racing Team Base 3D Animation at Pratical Boat Owner – click here
Motor Boats Monthly has been to the south of France to test out the new Jeanneau Leader 40 open sportscruiser, which first saw on dry land at the 2013 Paris Boat Show.
Nick also looks at the convertible aft sunbed in the cockpit, as well as the myriad seating options on the Leader 40.
Taking to the water, Nick also comments on visibility, the helm position and how the hull copes with the choppy conditions that we encountered.
Below deck, we take a closer look at the conventional layout, including the dinette, well-stocked galley, both cabins, and the heads.
Nick’s full boat test review is published in the July edition of Motor Boats Monthly, which is out now.
Light winds turned the 2014 event into an endurance test with the slowest ever winner; 715 finishers and 791 retirees. This extremely light winds, at times recording zero knots, turned the 2014 J.P.Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Race into an endurance test for its participants.
Held yesterday on Midsummer’s day, the race was one of the longest in the history of the 83-year-old race. There were 715 finishers and 791 retirees; race organisers said it is always regrettable to have more retirees than finishers but there was a very positive response from the majority of competitors nonetheless.
The slowest elapsed time for a line honours boat ever recorded in the race’s history was 08.51.37 achieved by Team Richard Mille on their GC32 foiling multihull – almost three times slower than last year’s winning time of 02.52.15, set by Sir Ben Ainslie’s AC45 catamaran team.
Most of the 1,585 entries started the race around the Isle of Wight in around three knots and bright sunshine and as the hours went by, temperatures rose but wind speed dropped leaving hundreds of boats becalmed and a large proportion of the 16,000 crew desperately seeking ways of making their boats go faster or resorting to stretching out on deck to enjoy the sunny conditions.
There were several standstills for many boats during the race, and other times when it was the tide, rather than the wind, that powered the yachts along.
First to the Needles was Jamie McGarry and Colin Moore’s Swan 45 Eala of Rhu but the going was slow and Sir Ben Ainslie, racing on the Farr 45 Rebel with members of his BAR America’s Cup crew, took longer to complete the first 13 miles than the record-breaking time he took to finish the entire race last year.
Rebel very quickly became involved in a match race with rival Farr 45 Toe in the Water crewed by injured servicemen and women who had served recently in Afghanistan and the lead swapped several times over the 50nms course though it was Capt Lloyd Hamilton’s ecstatic crew who nudged across the finish line ahead of Ainslie and his team of professionals.
‘This means everything to us,’ he said recording a time of 8 hours 51 minutes 39 seconds.
He added: ‘The guys are ecstatic at beating Rebel. They don’t know many of the America’s Cup sailors but they know and love Sir Ben Ainslie, so are thrilled.”
Racing debuts pay dividends
Another big battle to ensue on the water was between the brand new high-performance catamarans, the GC32s Team Richard Mille and Spax Solution making their racing debuts in the Solent.
Former line honours winner Pete Cumming had gathered together a professional crew for Team Richard Mille, including helmsman Paul Campbell-James and proved consistently faster than their rivals.
They took five long hours to reach St Catherine’s Point where the sea breeze kicked in to give the leading boats a big push over the next two hours towards the finish but just as they were within sight of the line, the wind in Stokes Bay died and their final flourish was delayed by a further hour to record a finish time of 8 hours and 51 minutes.
Cumming said: ‘It wasn’t the easiest race but these boats are superb – very fast even in light airs and fun to sail.’
First monohulls in battle royale
First monohull across the finish line was Dutch boat Tonnerre de Breskens, with a time of 9 hours 56 minutes 13 seconds but they too had a battle royale to gain an advantage over Mike Bartholomew’s Tokoloshe II, which trailed in just 22 seconds later after one of the biggest tests of endurance and patience since the Round the Island Race started in 1931.
The first Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust yacht, Scarlet Oyster, crewed by PBO News Editor Laura Hodgetts, trust volunteers and six young people crossed the finishing line at 5.57pm – almost 10 and a half hours after setting off at 7.30am.
A total of 24 teenagers took part on the trust’s five yachts. Dame Ellen and a crew aboard the trust’s flagship yacht Moonspray were forced to retire, after becoming becalmed off Dunose.
Twelve hours after the first start, 246 boats had finished and a further 445 had retired but the rest were still out on the course valiantly trying to make the finish before the cut off time of 10pm.
The Gold Roman Bowl was awarded to a Folkboat, Madelaine, skippered by Edward Donald, who hasn’t quite achieved the record four wins of the Gold Roman Bowl by Edward Heath but he’s nearly there, having won it individually three times and the Donald family has collected this famous trophy four times.
The Tenacity Trophy, awarded annually to the skipper of the last boat home. This year it fell to Stuart Whitmore to win the applause. He crossed the finish line on his Sigma 33, Sixes and Sevens, (IRC3) at 21.51.35, having started his race at 0730 – 14 hours, 21 minutes, 35 seconds later.
Event organiser, the Island Sailing Club, runs the event with support from title sponsor J.P. Morgan Asset Management and the race partners for 2014: Dream Yacht Charter, Haven Knox-Johnston, Henri Lloyd, Nautica Watches, Old Pulteney, Raymarine, Red Funnel, Volvo Car UK.
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) has submitted plans today for a new lifeboat station in Scarborough.
A larger building is needed to house the new state-of-the-art Shannon class lifeboat.
In 2015, Scarborough RNLI’s current all-weather Mersey class lifeboat Fanny Victoria Wilkinson and Frank Stubbs, will be nearing the end of her operational life. She will be replaced by the newest member of the RNLI fleet.
Scarborough will be one of the first of the charity’s lifeboat stations to receive a Shannon class lifeboat and Supacat bespoke launch and recovery vehicle.
The new plans are designed to offer the necessary extra space required to store the Shannon class lifeboat and Supacat launching vehicle. This will also mean the lifeboat and launch tractor can remain coupled together, which will speed up the launching process. Additionally, a space will be created within the station to enable the charity’s lifeguards to store the equipment for their summer beach safety patrols.
The build is expected to cost around £3million.
It will be funded from various RNLI sources including several generous legacies, donations and money from a variety of past fundraising activities.
Once planning permission has been granted for the new lifeboat station and the contractors have been appointed it is hoped that the build will be completed within a year.
The lifeboat station has been designed by long-established York architects Brierley Groom.
Andrew Ashton, RNLI Divisional Operations Manager, said: ‘The new lifeboat station plans were conceived not only to provide the extra space needed to accommodate the new Shannon lifeboat, but also to upgrade the volunteer crew’s facilities to a standard befitting the next generation of lifesavers.
‘The crew will have a superior space for interactive training, and they’ll also benefit from a state-of-the-art drying room for their kit, which will improve their comfort. The building will also utilise the latest eco-friendly technology, including a ground source heat recovery system.
‘Members of the public have always been encouraged to visit the station, but now they will have the advantage of a more interactive experience in the ‘encounter space’, where temporary exhibitions can take place.
‘Visitors will also be able to see the new Shannon at her best from an enhanced viewing gallery. The station shop will be upgraded and developed too, which will make for an improved retail experience.’
John Senior, Scarborough RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager, added: ‘We’re very excited about the plans for the new station, although naturally we’ll be sad to say goodbye to the current boathouse when the time comes.
‘The building has a long and distinguished history, and it has certainly served us well in providing a base for saving lives at sea.’
See article at Practical Boat Owner – Click here
The Düsseldorf Boat Show has attracted 1,650 exhibitors from 60-plus countries. Despite persisting strain on Europe’s boat markets ‘boot Düsseldorf’ has attracted a strong turn-out this week, say organisers.
Werner Matthias Dornscheidt, President and CEO of Messe Düsseldorf, said: ‘Given the current difficult economic climate this is a great success.
‘Many exhibitors have announced extended ranges and are using boot Düsseldorf as the premiere show for their new models.’
The week-long event will finish this Sunday, 26 January.
According to Jürgen Tracht, managing director of the Federal Association of German Watersports Industries (Bundesverband Wassersportwirtschaft – BVWW), the hopes of European boat manufacturers for a major recovery from the 2008 financial and economic crisis have not been fulfilled but developments point to improvements next year.
Buyers at ‘boot 2014’ are spoilt for choice, with 11 of the 17 exhibition halls dedicated to yachts driven by sail, motor or even muscle power.
A total of 440 shipyards, dealers and importers are presenting 1,700 vessels ranging from luxury yachts to canoes and dinghies.
The show not only offers a huge range of boat equipment but is also said to be ‘the largest maritime travel market and the largest diving sport fair in the world’.
Coastguard search units have resumed the search for a missing sailor who fell overboard in North Lincolnshire during last night’s bad weather
Coastguard units and lifeboats resumed the search for the man earlier this morning but have so far been unsuccessful.
The man, who is believed to be Russian, was thought to have become tangled in ropes.
Watch manager Mike Puplett said: “A crewman from a ship called the Sea Melody, which was tied up on the River Trent in North Lincolnshire, was working on the upper deck with ropes and wires.
“We understand that while the vessel was moving from one jetty to another he got entangled in the wires and was pulled overboard into the River Trent and disappeared almost immediately from view.
“The helicopter was there within minutes using his infrared camera which looks for heat sources, which is the best bit of equipment you could have really.
“The helicopter searched for quite some time, in fact right to the limit of his fuel before he had to return to base, unfortunately we haven’t found anything yet.”
It’s believed that the missing crewman was not wearing a lifejacket when he fell, but he did have on high visibility clothing.
Smoke could be seen coming from a boat in a Portsmouth boatyard following an explosion and fire on board. Emergency crews were called to the Portsmouth Marine Engineering private boatyard when a blaze broke out on Sunday afternoon.
The explosion took place at around 1pm on Sunday and the fire crews spent 20 minutes putting out the fire.
An investigation into the incident is now taking place, however it is thought it may have been caused by a gas leak.
Weather warnings as an Atlantic storm brings a North Sea storm surge to parts of the UK – Thousands of people were evacuated from their homes last night as a tidal surge struck the east coast of England.
The North Sea surge, predicted to be the worst in 60 years, was caused by an Atlantic storm that brought very strong winds to northern parts of the UK yesterday with widespread gusts of 60-80mph.
The Met Office continues to issue ‘national severe’ weather warnings. This morning’s shipping forecast warns of northwesterly severe gale force 9 winds rising to violent storm 11, plus a very high, rough sea state.
The Environment Agency, Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) and Natural Resources Wales have also issued numerous severe flood warnings for the coastline that stretches from North Lincolnshire to Kent.
Flood waters have receding in many areas but there are expected to be further high tides later today.
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) lifeboat station in Wells was flooded during yesterday’s storm surge. It was one of nine RNLI lifeboat stations flooded or damaged by the weather.
What is a storm surge?
This is a very localised rising of sea level – independent of tides – related to the track of a storm and its accompanying winds.
The storm causes this surge of water in two ways. Firstly strong winds, often blowing parallel to the coast or onshore, push water roughly in their direction which causes water to ‘pile up’ on nearby coasts.
The second element, which is less important for the UK, relates to differences in air pressure. Low pressure, associated with storms, exerts less of a force on the sea surface – allowing the sea surface to temporarily rise in the vicinity of low pressure.
Local geography also plays a role. North Sea areas are particularly prone to storm surges because water flowing into the shallower southern end cannot escape quickly through the narrow Dover Strait and the English Channel. The shallow depths in the southern North Sea also aid the development of a large surge.
Read more at Practical Boat Owner – click here
The new tax regime is expected to become law within a few weeks – Cruising sailors in Greece will be hit with a new tax of up to 400 euros a year.
The imminent tax will affect everyone sailing in Greek waters and is all but imposed following a vote in the Greek Parliament on 21 November 2013.
The new tax means all boats over 7m used for leisure activities in Greece will have to pay up. This includes commercial and charter boats, and day excursion boats licensed to carry fewer than 49 passengers, including those plying trade to other countries.
Boat owners with craft more than 7m and less than 12m long will have to pay between 200 and 400 euros a year to sail in Greek waters. But boats over 12m face a tax of 100 euros per metre per year, with a discount scheme available if boat owners pay for one month at a time while afloat in Greek waters at 10 euros per metre per month, or 30% off if they pay for a full year in advance. This is still to be clarified and confirmed.
Boats visiting Greece en route to Turkey, Croatia or Italy will be the hardest hit. Although in the minority of those affected by the new tax, the Greek authorities realise some cruising boat owners may consider leaving or avoiding Greece. The most vulnerable group are liveaboards with boats over 12m, who keep their boats on the water all year and are on a tight budget. No tax is payable if the boat is ashore for a full year.
The CA, based in London’s Docklands, has been monitoring the situation in Greece as it has almost 1,500 members sailing throughout the islands.
CA member Jim Baerselman, who has sailed in Greek waters for more than 30 years, said this significant tax could put many people off cruising in Greece.
It is understood that the tax is payable on entry to Greek waters and is valid only for that calendar year, which would mean anyone wintering in Greece would have to pay two years’ tax. But boats over 12m only need to pay monthly.
Implementation of the tax could possibly still be postponed or halted, but Mr Baerselman feels it is unlikely to be changed substantially.
The new tax regime will not become law officially until it is published, but this is expected to take place in the next few weeks.
GREAT Britain crossed the finish line into Albany, Western Australia at 13:32:48 local time (UTC+8), just 27 minutes ahead of Henri Lloyd, to clinch its second consecutive win, following a dramatic and close fought 5000 mile race in a challenging leg through the Southern Ocean from Cape Town, South Africa in the Clipper 2013-14 Round the World Yacht Race.
GREAT Britain Skipper Simon Talbot celebrated the win with his crew and will also be awarded the Kinjarling Cup by the City of Albany. He said: “That was so emotional I had tears in my eyes as we crossed the finish line. We are absolutely delighted as it was such a tough race and we really didn’t expect to win.
“We had our fair share of dramas, particularly when we were knocked down by a big wave and crew morale took a hit, but we picked up the pace again. The crew is a winning crew and really knows how to perform. In the last 48 hours there has been just three miles between us and Henri Lloyd, and after a squall we did a double manoeuvre and overtook, and managed to stay ahead until the finish.”
The close finish followed a particularly brutal and dramatic Southern Ocean crossing. Early on in the race, two boats had to divert and medevac off injured crew after exceptionally strong wind speeds when gusts in excess of 90 miles per hour lashed the fleet, providing dramatic surfs and towering waves as it headed south through the Indian Ocean’s Agulhas Current into the Roaring Forties of the Southern Ocean. Every two to three days, the yachts were hit by new low pressure systems which made for an epic and particularly challenging Leg.
Henri Lloyd Skipper Eric Holden, who is defending his team’s position at the top of the overall leader board kept up the pressure to the very end, finishing at 13.59 local time. He commented: “It’s been a very challenging but rewarding race. Everyone feels like they have achieved a real accomplishment.
“It was a close battle with GREAT Britain, and when a squall hit and they gybed away, our kite got doused which slowed us down and they got away and we couldn’t catch them. To win, you risk equipment damage and we have none so are really happy.”
The third podium place goes to OneDLL, currently expected to cross the finish line around 1830 local, with Qingdao anticipated in the early hours of Tuesday morning local time.
The remainder of the fleet will arrive in Albany Waterfront Marina over the next three days.
Race 5 to Sydney will start on Tuesday, 3 December.
The fleet’s progress can be tracked through the Clipper Race Viewer at
Expected arrival times for the fleet are currently as follows:
Team ETA Albany Waterfront Marina (Local time – UTC+8)
OneDLL 3 Mon 25 Nov – 1800 to 1900
Qingdao 4 Mon 25 Nov – 2300 to 0300
Invest Africa 5 Tues 26 Nov – Late morning
PSP Logistics 6 Tues 26 Nov – Afternoon
Switzerland 7 Tues 26 Nov – Evening
Jamaica Get All Right 8 Weds 27 Nov
Mission Performance 9 Weds 27 Nov
Old Pulteney 10 Weds 27 Nov
Derry~Londonderry~Doire 11 Weds 27 Nov
Team Garmin 12 Thurs 28 Nov
Read more at Yachting World – click here