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Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

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Displaying items by tag: La Solitaire du Figaro

At 1300 CET on Sunday 19th June, Leg 1 of the 2016 Solitaire du Figaro will kick off from the historic French town of Deauville. Unfortunately, for Irish fans, after a string of Irish stopovers at Howth, Crosshaven, Dingle, Kinsale and most recently Dun Laoghaire there will be no Irish stopover this year nor is there any Irish sailor involved.

As many as 40 brave skippers are expected on the Solitaire start line next year, as a fleet formed of the world's best ocean racers and ambitious young Rookies prepares to take on 1,525 miles of Europe's roughest waters - single-handed.

"This edition of the Solitaire will be particularly challenging," Race Director Gilles Chiorri explained. "The coastal route will throw the game wide open, with skippers left to decide whether to stay closer to shore or go further offshore. To be successful around this course, the competitors will need seasoned offshore experience and tactical intelligence, enabling them to play the tides and weather to their advantage."

Director Mathieu Sarrot: "As 2016 is a Vendee Globe year, the Solitaire's most experienced skippers may be absent. This means the stakes will be high among the intermediate skippers, the skippers who consistently finish top 10 on a leg, but can't quite out sail the Yann Elies and Jeremie Beyous among the fleet. This is the year of the Solitaire regulars, their time to shine."

The 2016 course - 1,525nm:
Leg 1: Deauville - Isle of Wight Cowes (via Wolf Rock), 510nm
Leg 2: Isle of Wight Cowes - Paimpol (via Lands End and the Celtic Sea), 475nm
Leg 3: Paimpol - La Rochelle, 410nm
Leg 4: La Rochelle - La Rochelle (via the Ile d'Yeu), 130nm

Published in Figaro
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#AOAsolo – And they're off...nearly. Just three days now stand between Artemis Offshore Academy Rookies Rob Bunce (Artemis 37), Robin Elsey (Artemis 43), Andrew Baker (Artemis 23) and the first race of their solo offshore careers – the 196 mile Solo Basse Normandie starting 1430 CET on Friday 27th March. The Solo Basse Normandie is the litmus test for the Academy's intrepid Rookies. Have they learned enough? Have they practised enough? Will they be able to stay in the mix with the Classe Figaro Bénéteau's high calibre competitors? For Academy Alumni sailors Sam Matson (Chatham) and Alan Roberts (Magma Structures), the Solo Basse Normandie marks their first race as bona fide Figaro sailors, stepping out of the Rookie division and into the field after racing their first Solitaire du Figaro in 2014. For Jack Bouttell (GAC Concise), the race is the start of his third Classe Figaro Bénéteau season, while Nick Cherry (Redshift) and Henry Bomby (Rockfish Red) are preparing to kick start their fourth. For the British solo Figaro team, supported by the Artemis Offshore Academy, the future couldn't look brighter – the Academy's five Alumni skippers all securing promising partnerships with top UK businesses ahead of the season.

"Right now we are where we'd hoped to be in the Academy's evolution, with British companies seeing value in supporting the endeavours of our Alumni sailors and benefitting from their association," Charles Darbyshire, Artemis Offshore Academy Sailing Team Manager explained. "This benefit is not just in terms of media exposure, but also inspiring their employees and customers. While becoming a title/naming sponsor of a Figaro campaign is clearly a significant financial commitment, we've been impressed by the number of smaller sponsorships the Alumni sailors have been able to sign. This allows smaller companies to access the sailors, as well as giving bigger companies an opportunity to test the water with sailing sponsorship. The Academy has had to evolve from not only creating a British talent pool, but supporting it too. It's great to see eight British names on the entry list for the all important first race of the season – each skipper benefitting from varying degrees of Academy support. I hope the results on the water reflect the effort and energy that has gone in to each and every one of the British campaigns."

At just under 200 miles the Solo Basse Normandie looks set to be a short, but not so sweet race through some of the world's most tidal areas. On delivery to Granville, Jack and competitors from the Pôle Finistere Course au Large training centre were held up outside of the port, forced to anchor for seven hours after missing a vital tidal gate. Granville is notoriously hard town to reach by water, with a large sill preventing the Figaros entering or leaving the port at any time other than high tide. Add in to the mix a rugged coastline, debris and the Channel Islands and the Solo Basse Normandie competitors will have a lot to think about during their two intensely tactical days at sea.

"The Solo Basse Normandie course is extremely tidal" Ed Hill explained, a British Solitaire du Figaro competitor in 2013 and 2014. "It passes through the Alderney Raz, one of the most tidal areas in the world. If you have never been through there before it is an experience in itself. It can be a very frustrating time for a skipper, especially if the tide is against you. The course also slaloms around the Channel Islands, which are notoriously rocky. For the Rookies, there is going to be a lot to think about, especially over night. Twenty-four hours is a long time to have to stay in contention, stay awake and deal with everything that's going on. I think the race is going to be a real eye opener for them, both physically and mentally. There is a really strong turn out for the race this year and all the Brits are up against some really good sailors."

There are now 26 Figaro skippers signed up for the Solo Basse Normandie, ranging from top Solitaire du Figaro competitors Yann Elies, Paul Meilhat, Charlie Dalin and Vendée Globe winner Alain Gautier, to six ambitious Rookies including Rob, Robin and Andrew in the Academy's blue 'Bizuth' boats: "So far we've only sailed against each other and Benoit Mariette from the Rookie division, so measuring ourselves against Sophie Faguet and Martin Pape will be interesting," Robin explained. Along with Rob, Andrew and the Alumni sailors, Robin has spent his week in Granville pouring over charts and doing a recce of the area. "The wind is looking quite light for the race, which makes the tide even more important. I've sailed the area between Granville and Cherbourg quite a bit racing on the Royal Ocean Racing Club circuit and with a negative tide through the Alderney Raz, you'll see seven knots pushing against your boat. I'm hoping that we see a bit a breeze so that we won't need to drop anchor!"

The Solo Basse Normandie starts on Friday 27th March from Granville, France with the competitors expected to arrive in Cherbourg, France on Saturday 28th March.

The Solo Basse Normandie entry list:
Skipper/Figaro/Boat no./*Rookie

1. Paul Meilhat, SMA VOILE/ 4
2. Rob Bunce*, ARTEMIS 37 / 37
3. Robin Elsey*, ARTEMIS 43 / 43
4. Henry Bomby, ROCKFISH RED / 16
5. Yann Elies, GROUPE QUEGUINER LEUCEMIE ESPOIR / 26
6. Alan Roberts, MAGMA STRUCTURES / 85
7. Corentin Horeau, BRETAGNE CREDIT MUTUEL Performance / 3
8. Nick Cherry, REDSHIFT / 56
9. Yoann Richomme, SKIPPER MACIF 2014 / 79
10. Charlie Dalin, SKIPPER MACIF 2015 / 1
11. Martin Le Pape*, OVIMPEX Secours Populaire / 65
12. Benoît Mariette*, ENTREPOSE / 68
13. Thierry Chabagny, GEDIMAT / 8
14. Sébastien Simon, BRETAGNE CREDIT MUTUEL Espoir / 25
15. Alain Gautier, GENERALI 40 / 50
16. Alexis Loison, GROUPE FIVA / 9
17. Claire Pruvot, PORT DE CAEN OUISTREHAM / 55
18. Jackson Bouttell, GAC Concise / 19
19. Andrew Baker*, ARTEMIS 23 / 23
20. Sam Matson, ARTEMIS 21 / 21
21. Sophie Faguet*, REGION BASSE-NORMANDIE / 14
22. Arthur Prat, GUADELOUPE Grand Large 1 / 34
23. Nicolas Thomas, GUADELOUPE Grand Large 2 / 36
24. Gwénolé Gahinet, SAFRAN – Guy Cotten / 62
25. Isabelle Joschke, GENERALI Horizon Mixité
26. Adrien Hardy, AGIR RECOUVREMENT

Published in Figaro

#solosailor – A talented UK dinghy and solo sailor Alan Roberts for 2015 has signed a new sponsor for his second Solitaire du Figaro campaign. Alan, has been a professional sailor since 2012 and spent 2013/14 training and competing with the Artemis Offshore Academy, the UK's only solo sailing training centre, honing his solo offshore sailing skills.  New sponsor Magma Structures is a global leader in carbon fibre technology and offers world-class structural engineering expertise and flexible composite manufacturing from its base in Portsmouth in the UK.

Alan Roberts, 25, is an accomplished sailor as well as being a Naval Architect graduate with experience in building light-weight composite boats, as well as the design of bluewater cruising yachts and IRC race boats. Twice winner of the coveted Endeavour Champion of Champions dinghy title, Alan is also a former National Champion in the RS200, Merlin Rocket and XoD. In 2014 Alan was first in class in the RORC Cherbourg Race, as well as being the first double hander to finish in his Figaro.

"Magma Structures are title sponsors to my campaign in 2015, funding me primarily for the Solitaire du Figaro race and the races leading up to it. They are a fantastic company and I am very excited to be working with them this season," Alan explained. "It's really good to be able to get on the start line of the Solitaire du Figaro for the second consecutive year. It's really difficult to find sponsorship and I'm really lucky to have them as a sponsor." While Magma Structures come onboard as title sponsor, the Artemis Offshore Academy will still continue to support Alan's campaign in 2015.

Magma Structures are a fast-growing ambitious, young company specialising in the engineering design and manufacture of complex large composite structures. The company has unparalleled experience in the design and manufacture of 60m+ free-standing yacht rigs and works across a number of sectors including construction, transport, civil engineering, oil and gas to provide cutting edge composite products.

Clive Johnson, Managing Director of Magma Structures commented, "We're excited to be sponsoring Alan Roberts in his Solitaire du Figaro 2015 campaign. Alan is an ambitious and hard-working individual who will be taking on some tough challenges in the months to come. Magma Structures is no stranger to challenging projects and is currently building some of the world's most technical and innovative, free-standing masts in excess of 60 metres."

The Solitaire du Figaro is a tough, demanding, single-handed, offshore sailing race. The 2015 race starts 31st May from Bordeaux.

Published in Figaro

#lasolitaire – Three winners, five Rookies and counting - 20 skippers registered so far for the 46th edition of La Solitaire du Figaro - Eric Bompard Cachemire. The last two editions of the race have featured Cork entry David Kenefick but there is no Irish registration so far but potentially a Rookie entry from County Down. Andrew Baker, a member of the Artemis Offshore Academy, is in the running for a place on the start line, but first he has three practice races to earn his spot. The decision will be announced in May.

And in other exciting offshore sailing news for Ireland, a County Meath sailor has launched a Mini Transat solo sailing campaign for 2015.

With four months to the start of the 46th La Solitaire du Figaro - Eric Bompard Cachemire, 20 intrepid Figaro skippers have signed up to the 2185 mile, month long solo offshore race.

Kicking off on the 31st May from Bordeaux (France), as many as 45 solo skippers and their 33ft Figaro Beneteau IIs are expected to race from the grand city of Bordeaux to Sanxenxo (Spain), Concarneau (France), Torbay (UK) and across the final finish line in Dieppe (France) in July.

This year's early entry list is already evidence of the Solitaire's universal appeal, with registered entrants ranging from race champions and Vendee Globe winners, to talented regulars chipping away at the top 10, rank outsiders and ambitious first timers.

Triple Solitaire du Figaro winner Jeremie Beyou (Maitre Coq) (2005, 2011, 2014) returns to the race in 2015 not only to defend his title, but also with an aim to become the first skipper to have ever won the Solitaire four times.

Making their debut on the Class Figaro circuit in 2015, five ambitious Rookies have signed up for this epic solo marathon so far.

Also joining the fleet but not yet on the list, the Artemis Offshore Academy will contribute as many as three of its talented UK brood to the Rookie fleet. This year British Rookies Rob Bunce, Andrew Baker and Robin Elsey are out to earn themselves a place on the start line. This decision will be announced in May.

Skippers currently registered:

Skipper/boat name/nationality/*Rookie
1. Marc Pouydebat/TBC/FRA/Rookie*
2. Yann Elies/ Groupe Queguiner-Leucemie Espoir)/FRA
3. Jeremie Beyou/Maitre Coq/FRA
4. Benjamin Dutreux/Team Vendee/FRA/Rookie*
5. Gildas Morvan/Cercle Vert/FRA
6. Corentin Horeau/Bretagne Credit Mutuel Performance/FRA
7. Sebastien Simon/Bretagne Credit Mutuel Espoir/FRA
8. Martin le Pape/ Ovimpex-Secours Populaire/FRA/Rookie*
9. Henry Bomby/TBC/GBR
10. Thierry Chabagny/Gedimat/FRA
11. Adrien Hardy/AGIR Environnement/FRA
12. Alain Gautier/Generali/FRA
13. Tolga Pamir/Un jour un home un arbre/TUR/Rookie*
14. Gwenole Gahinet/Safran Guy-Cotten/FRA
15. Claire Pruvot/Port de Caen-Ouistreham/FRA
16. Vincent Bairnes/Guyot Environnement/FRA
17. Benoit Mariette/TBC/FRA/Rookie*
18. Laurent Pellecuer/TBC/FRA
19. Isabelle Joschke/Generali-Horizon Mixite/FRA
20. Corentin Douguet/TBC/FRA

Published in Figaro

#fullrish – The start of leg 4 from Les Sables on Sunday was pretty wild writes Irish solo sailor David Kenefick competing in the La Solitaire du Figaro. 25 knots and a two metre swell in bright sunshine made for a fine spectacle.

The 2.5 mile windward leeward start of the long 490 mile leg to Cherbourg sorted a lot of things out quite quickly with fairly large variations in speed shown straight away.

Spectacular surfs downwind eased the pain of the long upwind slog along the rocky coast and as night fell the fleet was heading West towards the approaching depression.
David made a good start and held his own around the course and on Monday morning is in the top half of the fleet in much lighter airs sailing North past Belle Isle.

Having sailed most of the night upwind into a dropping wind as they crossed the pre-depression ridge the fleet is now reaching with spinnakers heading North West to the Chausée de Sein, the next mark of the course.

But as ever there is a trade-off going on between being further west and getting the better breeze earlier or further north and getting to the mark earlier. The next part of Monday will show us which side of the fleet has got this right.

At 08:00 this morning David was in 10th position on the Eastern side of the fleet. You can follow the tracker on lasolitaire.com

Published in Figaro

#fullrish – Solo Irish sailor David Kenefick sends Afloat.ie this update from Leg three of  the La Solitaire Du Figaro race

That was tough, frustrating and it seemed to be long but in fact it wasn't excessive. I started nicely at the pin end and sailed a good inshore part of the course and enjoyed the fight. I find that its so much easier to start the at the pin end and make your way safely to the left of the course before the approach to the top of the course. If the line is biased to the left it works really well, if the line is neutral or tot the right there is plenty of room and you totally stay out of trouble and the worst position you'll have at the top mark is in the teens.

The first legs are always long, over two miles and I like to get settled into sailing fast upwind straight away and not being compromised by too many boats around me. But alas the Figaro is not about being well placed after an hour, its about being well placed after 72-100 hours. To be well placed though it helps to be in the front pack at the beginning because it is rare that the back-markers get all the way back to the front. I'm in fifth place overall for the inshore prize. Once in the front pack then it is all about two things, risk management and boatspeed. Boatspeed doesn't always come easily in a One Design class like this, there simply is no shortage of experience which I'm still looking to accumulate.

Risk management is a nice way of saying don't lose touch by going away from the group you are with. The race is about attrition. Over the days and nights the fleet gets spread out, its natural and its because you miss things or you are tired and not sailing at your best. If you manage to stay with the pack and sleep and stay sharp you will manage to last longer in the pack. Its taken me a while to work all this out, two years now and Leg 3 was going well for the first 24 hours. It got pretty complicated at Belle Ile where there was an almighty park up but I managed to get away in about the same place that I came into it.

The run offshore to ODAS was going well for me too but at around eight the next morning the boats just a few hundred metres ahead of us seemed to just get something first and started to sail away from everybody else. Very quickly this was a break and our group, the bulk of the fleet got left behind. It was terrible because there was nothing we could do except be philosophical about it.

At one stage the leading group was more than five hours ahead of us. 24 hours later and we had an opportunity to close the gap down when the leaders ran out of wind close to Ile de Ré on the last segment to the finish. We didn't pass them but the gap went back to one hour instead of five.

I finished mid-morning, I'm shattered and burnt and hungry. We have just over two days to turn it around and head back out again for the final leg to Cherbourg which starts on Sunday.

But tonight a Comptoir Irlandais Whiskey tasting event with my sponsors and fellow skippers.



Published in Figaro

The morning after the first night at sea on leg three of the La Solitaire Du Figaro Cork's David Kenefick is in 14th place as the fleet of 37 Figaros race across the West of Brittany and past the Glenan Islands on their way to Belle Ile writes Marcus Hutchinson.

The start yesterday afternoon in 18 knots of breeze from the North East gave spectacular sailing conditions and it wasn't long before the whole fleet was racing at speed downwind with spinnakers up. The North Easterly is forecast to stay with the fleet for most of the next couple of days with just a few transitions in and out of sea breeze which will need to be handled carefully.

David has had a solid first part of the race and will be happy to be still in the mix this morning. Overnight the lead has gone to Britain's Sam Goodchild as the fleet passed through the Raz de Sein and past Audierne and PenMarch.

The fleet will leave the coast past Belle Ile this afternoon and head out into the middle of the Bay of Biscay to a weather buoy 150 miles offshore.

This buoy will prove to be tricky to find as it is moored in 4000 metres of water and has a mooring chain of nearly 12000 metres which means it 'wanders' a bit! The long term forecasts, the only information the skippers can leave with, are still fairly vague on exactly what the wind will do and hence it will be difficult to make strategies other than conservative ones for this leg. For now it is about speed and getting as much sleep as possible so as to be able to think straight when the important decisions need to be made.

Published in Figaro

#fullirish – Royal Cork's David Kenefick and The La Solitaire du Figaro fleet sailed in to Roscoff this morning at the end of two with the solo Irish sailor now 25th overall from 38 after the second stage of four in the intrepid race. Straight from his Full Irish nboat he has sent Afloat.ie readers the following report:

'That was a tough leg, but they always are. I shouldn't be frustrated, I'm hitting good places from time to time. I'm often playing well into the top half of the fleet and the top ten which was never the case last year. I'm going fast, faster than I ever have before and I',m always in the pack. This last leg was one that was rather unusual. There weren't many opportunities to do anything other than lose places. I had a good start and a really good second beat meaning I was in a good eighth place leaving Plymouth. My first big mistake was sailing too close to the Lizard off the South West Coast of England. We were really late starting and the tide was away by the time we got there and there was better pressure offshore. I lost a couple of miles there, miles that were never going to come back.
The Scillys were amazing with this great weather we are having. Dodging the various TSS zones kept us working hard and the long tight white sail reach out to the Stags was actually rather monotonous. It was difficult to stay awake on this leg and I had to sleep a lot. Just a few degrees up or down seemed to make quite a difference in the shifty dropping breeze.
It was great to see this small RIB approaching me at seven in the morning 10 miles off the Irish coast. I had a feeling that something like this would happen but when I saw Neil (dad) and George (brother) on board, well it was a special moment. I'd like to have been further up the fleet but they could see I was in the pack. Plenty of moral encouragement and banter...
Eventually when we got to the Stags off the Irish coast the fleet had bunched up again and pretty much all boats were in sight after two days. The run down the coast past Baltimore, Sherkin and Cape Clear was a great time, Dolphins and Whales and all my competitors raving about the wildlife and the good weather and the scenery on the VHF.
I was the first of the fleet to gybe offshore to try and get better breeze away from Cape Clear, and approaching the Fastnet with my Shamrock spinnaker set will be a photograph to keep.
The way back to Roscoff saw us tight reaching under headsails and at every corner we got lifted and were able to make it without tacking. It took a really long time and there were times I was fast and putting distance on people I've been training with over the winter and people who beat me big time last year.
We got into Roscoff just before dawn this morning and I finished 23rd, three and a half hours behind Yann Elies who is on fire with speed. He was leading the first leg when he dropped his mast at the Wolf Rock and then won this leg by almost an hour from the second boat. Impossible for him to win three in a row counting a retirement but a class act to sail with. I'm 25th overall after two legs and just five hours off the lead. After two legs it is still a very compact leaderboard and a huge amount can still happen over the next two legs. I'm gonna rest for the next few days, the next start is on Sunday 22nd June and it is looking like a windy downwind slide for the first two days. Looking forward to it, but not straight away. Thanks for you support.'

The skipper of Groupe Queguiner was first across the line in Roscoff at the end of Leg 2 of La Solitaire du Figaro-Eric Bompard. Elies finished at 01:26:01 after 3 days 3 hours 0 minutes and 01 second with an average speed of 7.3kn over the 535nm Leg. Corentin Horeau (Bretagne - Credit Mutuel Performance) finished second in the second Leg of La Solitaire du Figaro-Eric Bompard cachemire at 01:24:43 BST.

Jeremie Beyou (Maitre Coq) finished in 3rd, 40 seconds later at 01:25:47BST and Fabien Delahaye (Skipper Macif) crossed the line in 4th at 01:26:19BST

First ten finishers, stage 2:

1. Groupe Queguiner - Leucemie Espoir, Yann Elies
2. Bretagne Credit Mutuel Performance, Corentin Horeau
3. Maitre Coq, Jeremie Beyou
4. Skipper Macif 2012, Fabien Delahaye
5. Interface Concept, Gildas Mahe
6. Agir Recouvrement, Adrien Hardy
7. Groupe Fiva, Alexis Loison
8. Normandy Elite Team, Charlie Dalin
9. Cercle Vert, Gildas Morvan
10. Un Maillot Pour La Vie, Corentin Douguet

After 2 stages, overall top ten:

1. Skipper Macif 2012, Fabien Delahaye
2. Maitre Coq, Jeremie Beyou
3. Groupe Fiva, Alexis Loison
4. Bretagne Credit Mutuel Performance, Corentin Horeau
5. Normandy Elite Team, Charlie Dalin
6. Cercle Vert, Gildas Morvan
7. Agir Recouvrement, Adrien Hardy
8. Interface Concept, Gildas Mahe
9. Gedimat, Thierry Chabagny
10. SMA, Paul Meilhat

Published in Figaro

#fullrish – The La Solitaire du Figaro fleet which includes  sole Irish entry David Kenefick's 'Full Irish' has been racing hard for 33 hours now and although it hasn't been hard physically it has been a drain on the mental side as the leaders stretched out nicely ahead of the back markers since leaving Plymouth writes Marcus Hutchinson.

The start, originally scheduled for 18:30 had to be delayed due to the dropping sea breeze and the tardy return of the gradient wind.

David made a great start at the pin end again but rounded the top mark in the pack. In the failing light the second short upwind leg in Plymouth Sound gave the first real tactical choice and David leapt at it taking the left hand side of the course out of the tide and with several other boats rounded the last upwind mark in the top ten.

The long leg across from Prawle Point to The Lizard in the Northerly gave the fleet the chance to decide how close to the Lizard they would sail as they headed West. Too close, inspite of a favourable tide, would mean sailing into the wind shadow of this high point, too far South and there would be a lot of extra distance sailed. In the end the Southerly option paid handsomely and unfortunately for David he missed out on this and dropped back into the mid-20s again.

The Scilly Isles and the TSS around them were the next obstacle and spinnakers were dropped around the lonely islands before the fleet headed out across the Irish Sea.

The leaders pulled further ahead for most of Sunday but as the first boats got half way across the wind started to drop in front and the rest of the fleet caught up.

At first light on Monday on approaching the Irish coast pretty much the whole fleet was in sight of each other.

First around the Stags Buoy was Yann Elies at 07:00 and a simple broad reach for the 15 miles down to the Fastnet Rock followed. David's dad and brother along with Afloat.ie photographer Bob Bateman came out to see him and get some shots. Hopefully these will make it back to Afloat quickly to go with this story.

The Fastnet marks the halfway point for this leg and the first boats around are likely to stretch out again as the reach back to France in a slowly building breeze.

ETA at the finish in Roscoff is currently Wednesday morning.

Published in Figaro

#lasolitaire2014 – Leg Two of the 2014 Solitaire du Figaro is upon us. We are currently in balmy Plymouth with incredible weather about to be given the race briefing for the next leg. 535 miles from here to our very own Fastnet Rock and back to Roscoff. Exciting for me as any leg is but especially because we are going to be close to home for me. I sailed around the Fastnet Rock in the Fastnet Race last year with Olaf Sorensen but that was two-handed. This of course is different. 39 boats in the fleet, all of us on our own and all of us fighting for places in the most important race of our year.
So what's it going to be like? Well all of us are enjoying major summer weather which inevitably means not too much wind. It's going to take a long time. Although we will have reaching and spinnaker conditions for most of the way out and back it isn't going to be physical, it will be mental. There are a few obstacles on the way some of them real and some of them virtual. We have to respect the Traffic Separation Zones of which there are three large areas to the West and South of Lands End, at the Fastnet Rock and North of Ushant. If we stray into there areas it is instant disqualification. But we can only see them on our navigation charts and computer screens. There are no lines on the water!
We will start in Plymouth with an hour long inshore element around the buoys in Plymouth Sound before heading out to the West. The start is at 18:30 on Saturday, just as the local sea breeze is dropping off and the gradient is re-establishing itself from the other direction. So eventually Northerly going North East 10-15 knots all the way to Ireland.
I'm pretty sure the wind will drop considerably as we approach the Rock as it is almost coincident with the centre of the high pressure you are enjoying this weekend and next week. We will have to be careful as there will be light winds and transitions from gradient to sea breeze as we approach the Irish coast. We will make landfall somewhere between Castletownsend and Loch Hyne as we have to round The Stags South Cardinal buoy before making our way to the Rock. The reason for this little detour is to keep us safely away from the Traffic Separation Zone just to the South of the lighthouse. There may not be any wind and plenty of strong current flowing which might take us into the TSS, and that would mean instant disqualification. No messing. So if you around on Monday morning in that part of the world look out for the boat with the tricolor and the shamrock on the mainsail...
The way back to Roscoff from the Fastnet is the best part of 300 miles in a straight line. That's a long way in a straight line and the further we go the windier it will get which basically means those who are infront will go faster earlier. It will turn into a beat at the end in quite a bit of breeze and we should arrive in Roscoff sometime on Wednesday.

Published in Figaro
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boot Düsseldorf, the International Boat Show

With almost 250,000 visitors, boot Düsseldorf is the world's largest boat and water sports fair and every year in January the “meeting place" for the entire industry. Around 2,000 exhibitors present their interesting new products, attractive further developments and maritime equipment. This means that the complete market will be on site in Düsseldorf and will be inviting visitors on nine days of the fair to an exciting journey through the entire world of water sports in 17 exhibition halls covering 220,000 square meters. With a focus on boats and yachts, engines and engine technology, equipment and accessories, services, canoes, kayaks, kitesurfing, rowing, diving, surfing, wakeboarding, windsurfing, SUP, fishing, maritime art, marinas, water sports facilities as well as beach resorts and charter, there is something for every water sports enthusiast.

boot Düsseldorf FAQs

boot Düsseldorf is the world's largest boat and water sports fair. Seventeen exhibition halls covering 220,000 square meters. With a focus on boats and yachts, engines and engine technology.

The Fairground Düsseldorf. This massive Dusseldorf Exhibition Centre is strategically located between the River Rhine and the airport. It's about 20 minutes from the airport and 20 minutes from the city centre.

250,000 visitors, boot Düsseldorf is the world's largest boat and water sports fair.

The 2018 show was the golden jubilee of the show, so 2021 will be the 51st show.

Every year in January. In 2021 it will be 23-31 January.

Messe Düsseldorf GmbH Messeplatz 40474 Düsseldorf Tel: +49 211 4560-01 Fax: +49 211 4560-668

The Irish marine trade has witnessed increasing numbers of Irish attendees at boot over the last few years as the 17-Hall show becomes more and more dominant in the European market and direct flights from Dublin offer the possibility of day trips to the river Rhine venue.

Boats & Yachts Engines, Engine parts Yacht Equipment Watersports Services Canoes, Kayaks, Rowing Waterski, Wakeboard, Kneeboard & Skimboard Jetski + Equipment & Services Diving, Surfing, Windsurfing, Kite Surfing & SUP Angling Maritime Art & Crafts Marinas & Watersports Infrastructure Beach Resorts Organisations, Authorities & Clubs

Over 1000 boats are on display.

©Afloat 2020

At A Glance – Boot Dusseldorf 

Organiser
Messe Düsseldorf GmbH
Messeplatz
40474 Düsseldorf
Tel: +49 211 4560-01
Fax: +49 211 4560-668
Web: https://www.boot.com/

The first boats and yachts will once again be arriving in December via the Rhine.

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Howth Yacht Club
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