News » Press Release
Last week, Dutch Team Zwitserleven Booth/Nieuwenhuis revealed its revolutionary sail for the Olympic competition in China. Because of the expected light winds in Qingdao, the Tornado duo focused on developing a special gennaker. It is a lot flatter and smaller then the regular gennakers used on the Tornado. That allows the team to use this sail upwind in anything under 12 knots, something which is impossible with the traditional gennaker. Mitch Booth and Pim Nieuwenhuis believe that this will give them a big edge over the other competitors in the predominant light breezes of Qingdao.
”This afternoon, we were able to show its potential for the first time”, said helmsman Mitch Booth on Monday evening. After several days of unusual strong winds, today the conditions were perfect for the new sail, 5-10 knots with plenty of chop and current. These are the normal conditions for Qingdao and Mitch Booth commented: “We sailed laps around the other five boats that joined us on the water and I think they will be scratching their heads tonight. We are fully stretched on the wire in 5-7 knots of breeze, while the other crews are still sitting on the hull.” For months Booth and Nieuwenhuis kept their sail secret while developing it with designer Jay Glaser (USA) and sailmaker Ullman Sails Italy. They worked together with the teams from the USA and Puerto Rico to test and develop. No other competitors where allowed near the training facilities to keep the sail secret as long as possible.
Hugh Styles and Ryan Crawford (UK) scored two bullets on the first day of the Texel Dutch Open 2007 in the Netherlands. The British sailors shined at boat speed with their Nacra Infusion and ‘simple sailing’, as they called it. Mischa Heemskerk and Bastiaan Tentij, also on a Nacra Infusion, finished second twice in a fleet of 46 competitors. The British Spitfire team Chris Sproat and Georgina Burke are in third position overall. Last year’s runner up of the Zwitserleven Round Texel, Hans Primowees on a 27-year old Prindle 15, is leading the nine small cats in the Open Class II. After a few hours of postponement, the conditions were close to perfect with a southwester force 4, waves and clear skies.
A week prior to the start of the 30th Zwitserleven Round Texel Race, the organization has received 482 pre-entries. Among them the overall winners of 2006, Remco Kenbeek and Paul Brouwer with their F18 Capricorn (NED). The Swedish M20 duo Marström/Persson that took last year’s line honours after an exciting battle, will be back as well. The golden fleet is at full strength with over two hundred top teams from the Netherlands, Australia, France, Belgium, Germany and the UK. On Saturday June 23rd 2007 at 12:30 hours pm local time, hundreds of catamarans will start their race against the clock. From Wednesday June 20 until Friday June 22, golden fleet competitors have the opportunity to warm up by participating in the Texel Dutch Open, the official Dutch Championship Catamarans Sailing. 98 Teams have registrated so far.
A strong representation of home country the Netherlands will line up for world’s biggest catrace. Double former winner Mischa Heemskerk and his new crew Bastiaan Tentij are at full speed this season. Earlier this year, the Yamaha and Boskalis sponsored duo won Eurocat in Carnac (FRA) and the North Sea Regatta in Scheveningen (NED). They are part of the first one season Nacra Master Class ever, in which the 19-year old Tentij is supposed to learn as much as possible from his master Heemskerk. Tentij’s actual skipper Stefan Dubbeldam (19) will be coached and trained by Gunnar Larsen, who won the Round Texel Race in 1999. Team Zwitserleven Booth/Nieuwenhuis will be hard to beat in heavier conditions. At the F18 Worlds in Queensland (AUS) in February 2007, the Dutchmen showed their strength by winning silver with only one point deficit to Gold. Booth won the Zwitserleven Round Texel Race 2004 with crew Herbert Dercksen. Almost a year after their split, the two former mates will compete against each other, but this time both as skipper.
Prototype Volvo Extreme 20
Herbert Dercksen takes the helm of the prototype Volvo Extreme 20, with Aaron Mcintosh (NZL) crewing for him. Dercksen about his latest project, enabled by Zwitserleven: “This carbon cat is based on the M20, but has a different sail plan. You can consider it as a possible successor of the Tornado. Is carries a Tornado mast, the jib is smaller and the main a bit bigger. The VX 20 weighs 125 kilograms, which is 45kg less than the Tornado. I have learned a lot over the past years, so it is very exciting to helm by myself now. I look forward to the race.” At the moment, Dercksen is skippering the Extreme 40 in the Swiss Bol d’Or on Lake Geneva.
Papendrecht / Netherlands, May 10 2007 --
Since the year of 2007, Dredging contractor Royal Boskalis Westminster nv sponsors the ambitious catamaran sailors Stefan Dubbeldam (19) and Sebastiaan Tentij (19) from the Netherlands. These technical students, who won last year’s Dutch Championship Hobie 16 with spinnaker, aim at participation in the Tornado class at the Olympics of 2012. To reach the level of world’s best cat sailors as fast as possible, the team attends a special Nacra Master Class given by professionals Mischa Heemskerk and Gunnar Larsen. Dubbeldam is sailing with Larsen to learn the tricks of the trade, and Tentij with Heemskerk. In these formations the crews participate in the international Formula 18 circuit. In the beginning of May, Heemskerk and Tentij won their first large regatta, Eurocat 2007, in Carnac (FR). Larsen and Dubbeldam obtained a tenth position.
On Thursday April 5 2007, Team Zwitserleven Booth/Nieuwenhuis (NED) finished ninth at the Tornado Europeans 2007 and eleventh in the overall results for the Mats Nyberg Trophy. This was the final outcome, as the Dutchmen just missed the medal race. Sixty teams representing twenty-one countries participated in this year’s European Championship raced in the Bay of Palma. The fleet was the highest standard assembled with many World and Olympic champions taking part. The event was conducted during the annual Princess Sofia Trophy, part of the grade one Olympic Class circuit.
Team Zwitserleven started the ten race series well and by the half way mark it was placed fifth overall. Races seven and eight cost the team badly as they slipped back to sixteenth before recovering to finish ninth overall. This result is awarded with a B-status of NOC*NSF (national Olympic Committee). Skipper Mitch Booth commented: “The conditions were brutal with storms every day over the course that caused the wind to do circles. We are generally happy to have made the top ten in this event, but still have a lot of work in preparation for the World Championships in Portugal this July.” Crewman Pim Nieuwenhuis added: “We have made real progress with our sail development program and now feel confident that we can go and race the best of the best. The new sail designs we are using have improved our light wind performance dramatically.”
The 30th Zwitserleven Round Texel Race in the Netherlands shows several innovations. First, the recreational sailors will have their own classification, the so called silver fleet. That means they don’t need a measurement form and they pay a lower entry fee, which makes participation in world’s biggest cat race more economical. The party tent is the second change, as the new licensee and caterer will restore the original social atmosphere. As of March 6th, all participants can register for the Zwitserleven Round Texel Race 2007, that will start on June 23rd.
Despite the two classes, the whole fleet starts together, so the sensation of hundreds of colourful catamarans on one line remains the same. The top three performances in the silver fleet will be awarded with encouragement prizes. During the Round Texel Week, the recreational sailors can also enjoy the traditional Horsttocht and social beach culture. Their entry fee is 100 euro, whereas the competitive racers pay 110 euro. In addition, the Golden Fleet competitors still have to meet the requirements for participation. Foreigners only need a measurement form, but Dutch equips also need a starting license, eventually a sponsor certificate and a membership at a sailing club that is associated with the Royal Netherlands Sailing Federation. All of this gives them the right to participate in the official Dutch Championship Catamaran Sailing, called the Texel Dutch Open, commencing on June 20th. That competition runs over three days.
St. Petersburg, Fla. (February 16, 2007) – On the opening day of the Sperry Top-Sider NOOD Regatta in St. Petersburg, Fla., wild weather conditions proved a challenge for the record 195 boats competing. Gusting 15-17 knot northerly wind combined with a sharp dip in temperature – where the high temp registered a mere 40 degrees – and created an unusual test for competitors who traveled to the west coast of Florida despite the snow storms that crippled the nation’s travelers earlier this week.
Newport, R.I. (February 13, 2007) – While most of the country is preparing for a winter storm this week, over 1500 sailors are headed to Florida for the Sperry Top-Sider National Offshore One Design (N.O.O.D.) Regatta, in St. Petersburg, Fla. Scheduled for February 16-18 at host St. Petersburg Yacht Club, the regatta’s organizers are preparing for 200 teams spread across 19 one design classes. Daily racing will take place on Tampa Bay under the guidance of Principal Race Officer (PRO) Peter “Luigi” Reggio, who also is known as the PRO for the America’s Cup. The 2006 defending overall champion, John Storck (Huntington, N.Y.), will return to J/80 class competition with his Rumor.
The largest class is the Melges 24 with 40 boats set to compete. “As usual the class is deep in talent this year,” said Reid Collins (Flowery Branch, Ga.), the U.S. Melges Class Southeast Governor and skipper of Desperate Measures. “From the South, I'd have to say Bob Dockery (Longboat Key, Fla.) on Barracuda could be one to watch, while our class president, Scott Gregory (Marietta, Ga.), with pro sailor Scott Nixon as tactician is another. Steve Jones (Silver Point, Tenn.) on Sick Puppy came close to winning the regatta last year, so he may be one as well. If I opened this up to outside the South, I definitely would have to add Argyle Campbell (Newport Beach, Calif.) on Rock 'N Roll and John Pollard (Torquay, U.K.) on Excellent, both of whom regularly compete at the very top of the class.” The regatta doubles as the first of seven scheduled for the southeast circuit.
Lake Neusiedl, Austria, May 19th 2006 - Team Zwitserleven Booth/Dercksen is close to a medal at the ISAF WorldS ailing Games 2006 in Austria. After eight races on Lake Neusiedl, the Dutchmen are second on the points table of the Hobie Tiger class. The Australians Darren Bundock and Glenn Ashby are leading. The medal race on May 20 will be decisive for the final podium ranking. According to Mitch Booth, the competition is close. Theoretically, it could be a win or a tenth.
Before Herbert Dercksen starts to talk about today's racing in Austria, he expresses his feelings about the tragedy onboard ABN AMRO II: This is a really tragic story and our deepest sympathy go out to all at the ABN Amro team, and our hearts go out to Hans=92 family and close friends.
The Hobie HOTLINE, the original publication for Hobie
Cat news, has returned.
The Hobie HOTLINE started in
1971 as a little newsletter for Hobie Cat owners but
grew into a full-fledged magazine thought the 80's and
early 90's. In the mid-80's, the HOTLINE began to
loose its way. It became more of a marketing tool for
the Coleman Company, promoting Alpha sailboards, Hobie
Power Skiffs and other Coleman products. The Hobie
Class Association started the NAHCA News newsletter in
1992 in part because the HOTLINE was trying to serve
too many masters. Eventually the HOTLINE became a
financial burden on the Hobie Cat Company (now
independent of Coleman), who ceased publication in
For ten years after the demise of the HOTLINE, the
NAHCA News/HCA News kept plugging along, filling the
void. In the last ten years, the HCA News has grown
into a professionally produced magazine, comparable to
the original HOTLINE. So, the Hobie Class Association
has changed the name of its bi-monthly publication to
the Hobie Class Association HOTLINE. For many the name
change will bring back memories of "the good old
days." Not to mention the fact that Hobie HOTLINE
rolls off the tongue more easily than Hobie Class
Aruba, November 10th 2005
British teams dominated on the fourth day of the Aruba Heineken Catamaran Regatta. In the morning race, Stuart Gummer and Gillian Power (F18, GBR) beat Chris Sproat and Georgina Burke (Spitfire, GBR) by just three seconds after calculation. The Dutch Tornado sailors Eduard Zanen and Mischa Heemskerk won the Gaastra long distance race in the afternoon, followed by Gummer/Power and Allen/Farren. With one race left, Gummer and Power are unbeatable, so they can start to dismantle their F18 Capricorn.
"We had a good race with Mischa", told Richard Allen in the morning. "We were up to three laps in the lead, when he took it over. We caught them back and we rounded together the last gate, but we both choose another mark and Mischa finished just ahead of us." After calculation, Allen and Farren got a 7th position and Zanen and Heemskerk a 6th.
Bad start for leaders
Stuart Gummer and Gillian Power, the current leaders, did not win the eighth race because of a good start. Power: "We were too conservative. We rounded as fifth Formula 18 the first upwind mark. It was a terrible feeling to see all the Tornado’s and then the F18’s in front of us, but in every downwind reach we caught one up and we ended as first F18." Chris Sproat and Georgina Burke came very close to victory with their Spitfire in the morning race. Sproat: "We had a good start at the committee boat, so we had clear air. We zig zagged through the middle and reached the mark just behind Stuart. We increased our speed downwind, so we seemed to do very well. It was a good day for us so far."
Capri speed wanted
James Power and Marcus Lynch finished as second F18, which put them in third position on handicap. Power sailed a Spitfire last year, but he enjoys his Hobie Tiger (F18) now: "It sails smoother and you can push it much harder, but we want to have some ‘Capri speed’ upwind." The British sailors had two bad results, due to a broken jib and an OCS. After eight races, the second result could be discarded and that is why they came back in third position overall.
On Tuesday November 8th 2005
, the top two teams showed a tied battle for victory in the Aruba Heineken Catamaran Regatta. Eduard Zanen and Mischa Heemskerk (Tornado, NED) won the first race, after which Stuart Gummer and Gillian Power (F18, GBR) took the next bullet. John Moret and Gijs Jannink (Tornado, NED) moved into third position overall with today’s top ten results. Due to a miscalculation, the race committee announced the wrong winners of race five yesterday. It was not the Dart 18 of Sybrand Trefffers and Tjitske Stoel that beat all high tech cats, but it was the Capricorn of Gummer and Power.
Yamaha Race 6: No extra miles, two OCS
This morning, the competitors had to sail again a long course with two triangles and two rounds. Some people wrote the numbers of the marks down on their arm, others studied hard on the map, but everybody completed the race correctly. The offshore wind was about force four and initially the sun struggled to burst through the clouds. It was also a typical third day, as many sailors had to deal with muscular pains, painful hands and bruces all over. Zanen and Heemskerk were first at the upwind mark and staid in the lead until the end. Unfortunately for Gerard Loos and Ruurd van Wieren, they got an OCS (early over the line) after a second finish. The same happened to James Power and Marcus Lynch (F18, GBR). Stuart Gummer and Gillian Power scored a second place, followed by Chris Sproat and Georgina Burke.
Aruba, November 6th 2005
On Sunday, Stuart Gummer and Gillian Power had a flying start of the 15th Aruba Heineken Catamaran Regatta. The British F18 sailors took two bullets in the first two races and are leading after day one. John Moret and Gijs Jannink (Tornado, NED) are in second position, followed by Richard Allen and Simon Farren (Tornado, GBR). After a big squall during the practice race, it cleared up in the afternoon and the 15 knots wind pleased the competitors.
Gummer and Power were less fortunate at the Aruba Regatta 2004, as their boat was destroyed in a collision. They switched from the Spitfire to the F18 class and bought a Capricorn. Gillian Power: "It is not only great and fast, but also nice to run up with the Tornado’s now." And today, they beat them all on rating (after calculation). "We have to beat Mischa Heemskerk, since he finished ahead of us at our F18 nationals", said Gummer with a smile on her face.
Richard Allen and Simon Farren took the lead in the first race, until the last beat. Allen: "The two teams behind us went to the left and right. I wanted to defend our position and tried to stay in the middle of both Tornado’s. That was the wrong call, because there was no wind there." A fourth position was the result. Gerard Loos and Ruurd van Wieren (Tornado, NED) took the line honours, which was good enough for a second position on handicap, followed by Eduard Zanen and Mischa Heemskerk (Tornado, NED).
Port Elizabeth / South Africa, November 4th 2005
On Friday, Shaun Ferry and Michele Le Sueur (RSA) won the 2005 Hobie Cat World Championships in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. Tears came to his eyes, as Ferry hit the beach and heard about his third World Title. It was a rainy day in Nelson Mandela Bay, with a maximum of five knots of wind. Four final races were scheduled to determine the 2005 World Champion, but only one was was completed. Race two was cancelled after the first beat. Yesterday’s top three produced a disappointing result. However, Blaine and Roxanna Dodds could discard it and won silver, followed by the Germans Ingo Delius and Katrin Wiese-Dohse.
Shaun Ferry and Michele Le Sueur were welcomed back on the beach with a bottle of Champain. Ferry also won the World Title Hobie 16 in 1993 in Guedeloupe and the ISAF Hobie 16 World Champion 1998. "We are releived", said Ferry. "There was so much pressure", added Le Sueur. That was about it, because Blaine Dodds and other competitors picked the winners up and threw them in the Indian Ocean. Shaun Ferry quit sailing a few years ago, but he decided to participate at the 2005 Worlds just for fun. After he won the first race of the semi-finals, the pressure was on. Ferry about his future in the Hobie 16: "I want to put something back into the class, in order to keep it going. I will spend time on that. The sport must continue and that is most important to me." He finished 16th in today’s race, one place before Shuwalow and Hooper (AUS). The Australians already had a 21 position as discard, so they fell back to a fourth position overall.
Blaine Dodds and Shaun Ferry used to sail together in the past. Dodds about their successes today: "Well, it is a pity that we only had one race. It wasn’t supposed to be like this." He crossed the finish line in 35th position, which was his discard. Blaine is also a former World Champion. He won the title in 1998. The Germans Ingo Delius and Katrin Wiese-Dohse missed this year’s Hobie 16 European Title on the last day, which was different this time. They climbed for a sixth to a third place. "No German has ever won a bronze medal before, so we are very happy", said Wiese-Dohse enthusiastically. "We did not expect this before, but everything came together right. It was also German weather today and we were lucky that we only sailed one race."
This evening, the winners will be honoured at the prize giving at McArthur Pool. The 17th Hobie Cat 16 World Championships have experienced changeable weather conditions, which makes the World Champion a real winner.
Final Top five:
1. RSA - Ferry / Le Sueur, 21 points
2. RSA - Dodds / Dodds, 24 points
3. GER - Delius / Wiese-Dohse, 25 points
4. AUS - Shuwalow / Hooper, 28 points
5. RSA - Lagesse / Kerford, 32 points
Port Elizabeth / South Africa, November 3rd 2005 On Thursday the competitors of the 17th Hobie 16 Worlds in South Africa finally got a full day of action. After yesterday’s 40 knots offshore wind in Port Elizabeth, there was a nice and steady breeze all day long. The semi-final series of ten races were completed. Brazil took three bullets and Australia two. Both teams Tim Shuwalow / Cameron Hooper (AUS) and Juliano Viana / Sebastiao Gomes (BRA) won twice. The Aussies are in first position after the semi-finals, followed by the South African teams Ferry/Le Sueur and Dodd/Dodd. The battle for gold is tied, so it is going to be an exciting final day.
Race 4 to 6: Shuwalow and Hooper grab the lead
Today’s conditions have arrived right in time, as the Hobie 16 Worlds 2005 are coming to an end and the weather has been very tricky. The fourth semi-final race had to be cancelled again on Wednesday, due to a 40 knot offshore wind that all of a sudden came in during the starting procedure. This morning, the race committee decided to use short courses (upwind, downwind, finish), in order to catch up on the schedule. Blaine and Roxanne Dodds from South Africa were in the lead at the first upwind mark, followed by the British youngsters Tom Phipps and Andrew Taylor. Both of them choose for the left side of the course. Tim Shuwalow and Cameron Hooper (AUS) went to the right. The finish was close, but the Aussies caught a puff and beat father and daughter Dodds at the line. Shuwalow: "We got it just before them." All teams swopped their boats quickly and sailed out again. The Germans Wiese-Dohse and Versi Gehrmann took the lead from the beginning and sailed a conservative fifth race. They went inshore after the upwind mark and increased their lead. "It was nerve-racking", said Gehrmann afterwards. Blaine and Roxanne Dodds finished second. Race six showed exciting competition between Australia and South Africa. Shaun Ferry and Michele le Sueur (RSA) were heading from the seaside of the course towards the finish, as Shuwalow and Hooper came from inshore. The South Africans got a header and fell back to a second position. Shuwalow, who works for the Volvo Ocean Race organization, took advantage of a lift an won: "We had a nice pressure on the run downwind."
On Tuesday November 1st 2005, Ingo Delius and Katrin Wiese-Dohse from Germany won the third race of the semi-finals for the 17th Hobie 16 Worlds in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. They were first at the upwind mark and never lost their leading position in the battle with the US team of Bob Merrick and Mike Huang. Apparently, the Americans had bad luck with an OCS (early start). The South-Africans William and Lucinda Edwards took over the second place, followed by Paul Lagesse and Tyran Kerford (RSA). The fourth race, today's second, had to be cancelled again, due to a lack of wind.
Port Elizabeth / South Africa, October 31st 2005 -- South Africa and Puerto Rico in the lead
On day one of the semi-finals for the Hobie Cat 16 Worlds 2005 in South Africa, the competitors faced light conditions for a change. Today’s surf did not cause any problems either. The first race on Monday October 31st showed close racing in the top. Shaun Ferry and Michele Le Sueur from South Africa went inshore, took advantage of a lift and finished first. The current World Champion Hobie Tiger, Enrique Figueroa and his crew Carla Malatrasi from Puerto Rico, won the second race after the French guys Chichemanian/Bruges had to take a penalty. The tropical colours of Port Elizabeth area were covered by smoke today, as a fire further inland has been a spoil-sport for the last couple of days.
Fleet one: Flier between the rocks pays
"We undertacked the mark and were lucky to get a lift", said Michele Le Sueur after their victory. "We could double trapeze, as everybody else sat inside." Ferry and Le Sueur had a bad start: "We had dirty air and we were pushed up, so we were forced to tack." They took a flier inshore and sailed between the rocks just outside the surf towards the upwind mark. Le Sueur: "That paid, so we decided to go back in the second beat and this time we tacked earlier." That was their golden move, since it opened up a comfortable lead. At their finish, the South African people cheered for their fellow-countrymen. The French teams of Thomas Richards/Moana Trankcart and Cédric Bader/Yann Montoya sailed consistently in the top three and finished respectively second and third. Bader: "We did not take any risk and staid with the fleet. Our start was bad, but we went to the right side on the left. There was more wind and the waves pushed us up."
Port Elizabeth / South Africa, October 30th 2005
Veronique Telva and Guillain Kaya from Tahiti won the open qualifier round for the Hobie Cat 16 World Championships 2005 in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. On Sunday October 30th, they finished second in the first race, in which the locals Andrew Ward and Steve Arnold took the victory. Maxime Clercq and Yoann Bonte from France just barely won the second race. It was another spectacular day, as sailing off and towards the beach became a tough challenge. The surf was high with an offshore wind that was not really strong ashore. Everybody around helped the sailors. The beach master gave advices through the microphone and the public encouraged the competitors and clapped for every successful action.
First fleet: Bad luck
Although the seventeenth Hobie Cat 16 Worlds experienced the biggest storm and waves so far on Saturday, this Sunday morning started calm. After a postponement, the teams were allowed to leave the beach at 11.30 am for today’s first race. Allan Lawrence and Nicola Francis (RSA) took the lead from the beginning, but capsized just before the finish. Francis: "We were by miles ahead, but while reaching downwind, Allan got washed off and we could not keep it up. We came in fourth, but we are very disappointed of course. Yesterday, we broke the tiller bar prior to the start, so we have had bad luck so far." Andrew Ward and Steve Arnold took advantage of their fellow-countrymen and won the race. Ward: "We had a clear start at the middle of the line. We had 18 to 25 knots out there and the swell from yesterday was difficult. Especially downwind, you had to keep your bow up. We rounded the top mark in fourth position, took an early gibe and came second at the gate." The boys from Tahiti were second, followed by Fletcher Warren and Georgia Myers from New Zealand.
Landing safely on the beach was the final challenge for the first fleet, as the wind came straight ahead of them. John Dinsdale from Hobie Cat France watched the teams coming in and gave them advices and complimented their actions: "Catch your wave! Well done number 20. See, they were on the back of the boat and nothing happened." It was like a real time show with lots of spectators. Christian Wright and Charlie Clement from Hong Kong caught the best ride and surfed their way down to the shore and just missed another H16: "We went off so quickly."
Port Elizabeth / South Africa, October 29th 2005
On Saturday October 29th 2005, France and Tahiti won the first race in the open qualifier round for the seventeenth Hobie Cat 16 Worlds in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. Both teams, Alban Bruna / Jean Bernaz (FRA) and Telva Veronique / Kaya Guillain (TAH), gained convincingly their first victory. Although the conditions looked perfect this morning, they became rough again and further racing was abandoned. Spectators had a good time on the pier watching the spectacular sailing of the H16 crews out on the Indian Ocean. Back on the beach, all hands were needed to bring the equipment safely in.
After yesterday’s complete cancellation of competition due to a 40 knots offshore wind, today started with a nice breeze from almost the opposite direction. It increased very quickly before the first start and already shifted to the north-west. The starting gun was fired at 10:00 hours AM, with about 20 knots of wind and it continued to build up. Most of the teams went to the left side of the course. Only six decided to try their luck on the right, which did not pay off. The H16s that took a long starboard tack also fell behind, but the ones that took an early flier came out best. Bruno and Bernaz were first at the upwind mark: "We kept this position throughout the race. It was difficult sailing with high and short waves." They finished about three hundred meters ahead of the runners-up, Fletcher Warren and Georgia Myers from New Zealand. Meanwhile, eleven crews out of forty-three gave up due to the wild conditions. Boats were blown over and the beach master warned the competitors of the next race: "The wind and surf are picking up. If you do not feel comfortable, do not go out. If you want to reef your mainsail, there are ropes available."
The Hobie Cat 16 World Championships 2005 fell from from one extreme to the other, as the wind dropped from 46 to 5 knots within three days. The women and youth teams completed three races in total and the masters and grand masters only one. On Thursday October 27th, the French youngsters grabbed two titles: Morgana Laurancy and Marion Pennaneach in the ladies' class and the current European Champions Céder Bader and Yann Montoya in the youth. Past World Champion Blaine Dodds and his daughter Roxanne from South Africa won the masters. The Australians Bruce Tardrew and Sarah Turnbull were world's best grand masters of 2005.
Youth - Mission almost completed
Céder Bader and Yann Montoya already won the 2005 Europeans Hobie 16 Youth and Open in Heiligenhafen, and now they can add the Youth World title to their list of achievements. Céder Bader: "Our goal for South Africa is to win the Youth and to finish top five in the open championship." They finished in second and first position in yesterday's wild conditions. Although they prefer strong winds, the French managed to stay in the lead in today's light circumstances. Bader: "We were seventh at the first upwind mark and fourth by the second time we passed it. The wind was shifty and decreasing. We had some troubles with rounding the updwind mark, since it was positioned close to the surf." The 2004 ISAF Youth Hobie Cat 16 World Champions Tom Phipps and Jon Cook (GBR) came back from a fifth to a second positon overall, due to a second place in race three. Juani Maeglie and Cristina Guirola from Guatemala won bronze.
Women - Gold on the finish line
"We could just barely stay ahead of the Mexican girls at the finish line", told Morgane Laurancy after her victory. She and her crew Marion Pennaneach, Hobie 16 European Women Champion in 2004, finished fourth in the last race, which was good enough for the Hobie 16 Women World title 2005. Pennaneach: "We started as the very last boat, but we passed many teams in the second downwind leg, by making use of the waves." The French girls haven't sailed on a Hobie 16 for a year, because they switched to matchracing. Laurancy: "I think it helped us to improve our racing abilities." The competition was close with the other French team of Marie Duvignac and Pauline Thevenot. Unfortunately, they started their championship with an OCS (early start), which threw them out of the battle for gold. But they did not give up and won the last two races. The 2004 Hobie 16 Women World Champion Pamela Noriega and her crew Andrea Mier y Teran from Mexico dropped to the third place, as the South Africans Belinda Hayward and Kim Wilkinson-Davies climbed up to the second position. Only half a year ago, they teamed up for the Hobie Worlds 2005. Hayward: "We found a sponsor and trained four weekends on the sea in Cape Town. The rest of the time, we sailed on the ponds around Johannesburg. Before that, I had not sailed for eleven years. We were hoping for gold, but nobody told us how good the youngsters are. Especially the European teams."
On Tuesday October 25th, the Hobie Cat 16 World Championships 2005 started with wind gusts up to 46 knots. The Indian Ocean in the Nelson Mandela Bay looked sunny, but very rough, with high seas. All races were cancelled due to the extreme conditions. Some competitors hung around at the Port Elizabeth Beach Sailing Club and others did some sightseeing in the beautiful South African area. It was supposed to be the first racing day for three classes: fifty-three masters, eleven women and nineteen youth Hobie 16 teams.
Over the last couple of days, Hobie Beach has been transformed into a real Hobie Cat scene, with sailors from all over the world, of all ages and abilities. Sixty brand new 16s are assembled and ready to go. Since 24 hours, all boats had to be dismasted due to the high wind.
The organization of the 17th Hobie Cat 16 World Championships 2005, has received over two hundred pre-entries. These teams represent 28 countries, of which 10 are European. They will all compete for the World titles in the Nelson Mandela Bay of Port Elizabeth in South-Africa. From Tuesday October 25th until Friday November 4th , the heat is on. The fleet is very competitive with current and past champions, like Cedric Bader / Yann Montoya (FRA) who won this year’s Hobie 16 Europeans Youth, as well as the Open, but equally so, the 13 time South African Champion Blaine / Roxanne Dodds. They won the world title in 1998. And former Hobie 16 World Champion Shaun Ferry from South Africa will also keep the top runners honest.
The history of the Hobie 16 Worlds shows that the Australians have been the most successful with six victories. Fourteen Aussie teams will go for a 7th victory, whereas Bob Enwirda/Anna Wenmmo and Tim Shuwalow/Cameron Hooper are the strongest candidates. They can expect tough competition of many other top sailors, like the current Hobie 16 Youth World Champion Jerome Legal (FRA). He is now too old to defend that title, therefore he and Mickael Siret are aiming at the next one in the open class. Christophe Renaud de Malet and Alban Rossollin, also from France, will try to better their 6th position of last year. Other top ten potentials are Mark Laruffa (ITA), Stephan Rumph/Kim Liedtke (GER) and former World Champion (1994) Enrique Figueroa with Carla Malatrasi (PUR). Enrique Figueroa has a wonderful season winning the Hobie Tiger Worlds earlier in the year. Then following that up by winning the North American Hobie 16 Championships. A dark horse, from Guatamala, is young Juan Maegli, who finished 4th at the Cancun Hobie 16 Worlds 2004.
The womens fleet is competitive as well, with last year’s winners Pamela Noriega of Mexico and Marie Duvignac and Pauline Thevenot (FRA) who won the Women Europeans 2005. Other favourites are Morgane Laurancy and Marion Pennaneach (FRA) and former ISAF Women’s World Champion Inge Schubort (RSA).
A week and a half before the Zwitserleven Round Texel Race 2005, the organization received 557 pre-entries. Sailors representing nine countries will try their luck on June 11th in world’s biggest catrace. Among them also last year’s overall winner, Team Zwitserleven Booth/Dercksen (NED), and Bouscholte/Van Wieren (NED) who won the line honours. Visitors do not have to miss anything, due to live images on a big screen on the beach. TNG Official Timekeeper will inform them on the interim scores.
Most olympic teams will not be present on Texel, since the Tornado Worlds 2005 start on Monday June 13th in France. However, Mitch Booth and Herbert Dercksen will participate and they go for the line honours on a Hobie Fox Extreme Concept Boat. Booth about their special project: "We are using high-tech technology from the olympic sport for a beach cat. With this boat, we should be able to stay ahead of a Tornado." They have to race against Hans Bouscholte and Ruurd van Wieren on an eagle 20 carbon, but also against Wouter Samama and Jeroen van Leeuwen, a new Dutch Tornado team. Richard Allen and Simon Farren from Great-Britain are feared competitors on a Tornado as well.
There are several other favourites, sailing on different F18 catamarans, for the victory on handicap. The German Sach brothers and Kenbeek/Brouwer (NED) on a new Capricorn and the French Boulogne brothers, second overall in 2004 and F18 World Champions 2003, on a Cirrus. The Nissan Hobie Pro Team participates with two Hobie Tiger crews: Mourniac/Citeau (FRA) and Heemskerk/De Boer (NED). Paralympic sailor Thierry Schmitter (NED) will start in the Dart 18 class. He won a bronze medal in the 2.4mR at the Paralymic Games in Athens. Schmitter received a spinal cord lesion during a climbing accident in 1998 and sails the Dart 18 since the beginning of this season. Round Texel Co-ordinator Edwin Lodder: "Despite the lack of many olympic sailors, the fleet is of a high level again. It promises to be a strong competition and hopefully with an exciting final."
It is at 4 am (GMT), on Monday, April 25th that the CROSS Gris Nez informed us of the capsizing of Médiatis Région Aquitaine. A Chilean cargo boat diverted its road to take in Yves Parlier who is now outside danger. He suffers from contusions and from a broken rib. The cargo boat made at present routes towards Spain. It should arrive on Thursday, April 28th at Tarragone.
The capsizing took place during the second attempt of record of 24-hour distance run.
Joined on the cargo boat, Yves Parlier returned on the circumstances of the capsizing: «the boat began accelerating by lifting the hull. I had difficulties to
4-13-05 Titusville, FL - We are extremely pleased to announce the Vectorworks Marine Inc has entered in to an agreement with Bimare of Italy to be the licensed builder in the United States of their A-class catamaran, the XJ (Extreme Javelin).
This year, 2005, Bimare is celebrating their 30th year of producing catamarans. In 1978, with the introduction of the Bim A, they were one of the first companies to build a production A-class catamaran. This model sailed to multiple World, European and national titles. The A-class being a developmental class, has often helped lead the way in advancing "beach catamaran" design. Sail design, canting hulls and what is commonly referred to as "wave piercing" hull shapes, are all examples of features refined in the A-class and now being used in many of the new generation of production catamarans being manufactured. Bimare's long history of staying in the forefront of technology is represented in their Javelin hull shape. The XJ is a third iteration of this hull shape, building on the strengths of that concept. Early race results, from around the globe, are proving this design is going to make this the boat to beat.
Vectorworks Marine's history of quality tooling and contract manufacturing ties in perfectly with Bimare's concept of creating a US based manufacturer of their design. The growth in A-class participation in particular, has been severely hampered by not having a production builder located in the US. The majority of boats have typically come from Europe or Australia. The problems associated with pricing, exchange rates, shipping and customer support have made the commitment to own an A-cat beyond what most people are willing to put forth. Recently VMI has successfully transformed the Phill Brander designed Blade F16 in to composites and introduced it into the US market. The tendency towards performance and the detail involved in the F16 and A-cat designs makes them fit very well on the manufacturing floor.
VMI and Bimare look forward to helping catamaran sailing in the US expand by making models more readily available than has been typical in the past.