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Displaying items by tag: Offshore

#SoloSailing - The first leg of the Solo Offshore Racing Club's 2014 Celtic Sea Challenge is already under way, with the fleet of 18 confirmed entries making their way to Kinsale from Falmouth.

The programme continues tomorrow (Friday 25 July) with the soloists heading to Islander's Rest on Sherkin Island via the Old Head of Kinsale, while on Saturday (26 July) the fleet will progress to Lawrence Cove on Bere Island.

Thereafter the route goes in to Dingle before next Tuesday's big push back to Plymouth via Bishop Rock.

Despite the easy weather Ireland's been basking in these past few days, the Celtic Sea Challenge is indeed a challenge only for experienced solo sailors.

In the far west of Kerry especially there are few places to stop for fuel and food, so only the best prepared will make the grade.

Published in Solo Sailing

#Rockall - Motor Boat & Yachting reports on a potential new record round-trip offshore sailing from Portland in Dorset to Rockall in a remarkable 53-hour non-stop run on a single tank of fuel.

Maryslim, a 72ft wave piercer, set out from Portland Bill on a 'one boat, one team, one fuel tank' mission to complete the 1,422-mile voyage to and from the tiny disputed island in the North Atlantic off Ireland's northwest coast.

The crew were led by Richard Reddyhoff - who co-owns the boat with his wife Mary - who fronted a previous unsuccessful attempt to round the treacherous waters of Rockall in 2012.

But the weather window was just right this time round, and the team are now awaiting confirmation from the RYA of their hopefully record-smashing jaunt.

Motor Boat & Yachting has more on the story HERE.

Published in Offshore
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#offshorepetroleum – The Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Mr. Pat Rabbitte T.D. has today announced that the taxation provisions relating to petroleum exploration and production are to be revised upwards to provide for an increased financial return to the State from discoveries made under future exploration licences and licensing options.

Speaking this morning at the "Our Ocean Wealth Conference" in Dublin Castle, Minister Rabbitte, who also highlighted the exciting potential in offshore renewable energy, recalled that last year he had told the Oireachtas that he intended to seek independent expert advice on the "fitness-for-purpose" of Ireland's fiscal terms, such advice to focus on what level of fiscal gain is achievable for the State and its citizens and, equally important, on the mechanisms best suited to produce such a gain. International experts in the sector, Wood mackenzie, were subsequently engaged to provide that advice.

Minister Rabbitte announced that having received and considered Wood mackenzie's comprehensive and detailed report that he had sought agreement of the Government that Ireland's oil and gas fiscal terms should be revised along the lines recommended. He said that he concurred with the Wood mackenzie recommendation that there should be no retroactive change to the fiscal terms applying to existing exploration authorisations.

Commenting on the detail of the report Minister Rabbitte pointed to the key central conclusion which is that there is scope for strengthening the current fiscal system in terms of:

• providing for an increase in the overall State take;

• ensuring an earlier share of revenue for the State; and

• addressing what Wood mackenzie consider to be inconsistencies in the current fiscal system.

The principal recommendations made by Wood mackenzie are as follows:

• For now Ireland should maintain a concession system, with industry rather than the State bearing the risk associated with investing in exploration;

• Going forward a form of production profit tax should continue to apply in Ireland, but for discoveries made under future licences the form of this tax should be revised;

• The tax should be charged on a field-by-field basis with the rate varying according to the profitability of the field and charged on each field's net profits;

• That the revised tax should include a minimum payment at a rate of 5% which would function like a royalty and would result in the State receiving a share of revenue in every year that a field is selling production;

• That the revised tax rates should be higher than the Profit Resource Rent Tax currently in place, thereby ensuring a higher share for the State from the most profitable fields. This would result in a maximum rate of 55% applying in the case of new licences, compared with a maximum rate of 40% under the current fiscal regime; and

• That the corporation tax rate applying to petroleum production should remain at 25%.

These recommendations flow from a comparative analysis between Ireland and nine other comparable hydrocarbon producing nations such as Newfoundland and Labrador, New Zealand, Spain and South Africa amongst others, which can be found in the report.

Minister Rabbitte concluded that "By acting now and setting out Government policy on this issue, it is my intention to communicate a clear message in relation to the stability of Ireland's fiscal regime for the oil and gas exploration sector. For existing licences no changes are proposed. For future prospective licence holders a clear regime is being set out and the rationale for that regime has been explained. This should further engender industry confidence in the stability and predictability of Ireland's oil and gas fiscal terms and allow the industry to focus on effective and timely exploration effort. "

Published in Power From the Sea
Tagged under

#Offshore - Tracy Edwards - who led an all-woman team to victory 24 years ago in the precursor to the Volvo Ocean Race - has launched a bid to recover her race-winning boat Maiden after it was discovered in serious disrepair on an island in the Indian Ocean.

The 58ft offshore racing yacht was already 21 years old when Edwards and crew - including Irish sailor Angela Farrell - sailed her ahead of the pack in the 1990 Whitbread Round the World Race.

But since that time Maiden changed hands between successive owners and her whereabouts were lost.

Now Mail Online reports that Edwards has located Maiden abandoned in the mid-ocean island marina, she intends to return her to British waters for restoration.

But first she needs to raise £50,000 (€62,655) to lift and transport her from the Indian Ocean, and she's already bagged support from big names such as transatlantic record-breaker Richard Branson and Fastnet Race veteran Simon Le Bon of Duran Duran.

Mail Online has more on the story HERE.

Published in Offshore

#ISORA – The Offshore Racing Weekend, a higlhight of the 2014 ISORA calendar, started with a fast and furious 'midnight' race from Liverpool to Douglas with a fantastic spinnaker leg for the entire 75 mile voyage.  Results are available to download below. The first boat in was Jackknife who finished approximately 0200hrs on Saturday morning followed rapidly by the rest of the fleet and the last boat finishing approximately 0630hrs.

Bada Bing (Andy Napper, Andy and Annie Farrell) were overall winners again this year. Baba Bing, a Humphreys 30, was previously known as Men Behaving Badly, and subsequently Hot Rats and was built at Firmhelm in Pwllheli.

Published in ISORA

#isora – ISORA sailors are in bullish form after a strong turnout last night for the 97th race from  Liverpool to Douglas in the Isle of Man. Organisers of the Offshore Racing Weekend are hoping hoping that the 25–boat fleet for the first race to Douglas will increase for the Douglas to Dún Laoghaire race tomorrow, Sunday.

The 75–mile race started last night at 18.30 and is sailed under the burgees of Tranmere Sailing Club and Liverpool Yacht Club.

The second offshore race starts on Sunday morning at 0900hrs from Douglas to Dun Lagohaire, a distance of approximately 80 miles. 

The offshore weekend is a new Irish Sea initiative bringing together boats from across Northern Ireland,  the Isle of Man, England, Wales and Ireland. The venture has  won the support of Hudson Wight who are providing prizes for the weekend offshore series.

This race is also a feeder race for the ICRA championships in Dun Lagohaire next weekend.

Published in ISORA

#CheekiRafiki - US Coast Guard officials say they have identified the upturned hull of the Cheeki Rafiki, whose crew have been missing for more than a week.

But according to BBC News, they also confirmed that the vessel's liferaft was still on board - dashing any hopes that its crew of four British sailors may still be alive.

Contact with the 40ft yacht was lost last Friday 16 May after it reported taking on water and altered its transatlantic course while returning to Britain from a regatta in Antigua.

US and Canadian search teams covered a 4,000 square mile section of the mid Atlantic but halted their initial search after two days with no signs of its four-man crew - James Male, Andrew Bridge, Steve Warren and Paul Goslin - who are all experienced offshore sailors.

However, earlier this week the search resumed after a request from the British government amid pressure from the families of the missing yachtsmen and their supporters, who collected hundreds of thousands of signatures in an online petition.

The capsized yacht was found yesterday (Friday 23 May) by the US Navy in the same area where the crew had originally reported difficulties. Search operations have now ended.

BBC News has more on the story HERE.

Published in Offshore

#Offshore - The US Coast Guard has resumed the search for four British yachtsmen missing in the mid Atlantic after a request from Westminster, BBC News reports.

Contact was lost last Friday 16 May with Paul Goslin, Steve Warren, James Male and skipper Andrew Bridge of the Cheeky Rafiki a day after the 40ft yacht got into difficulties when returning to the UK from a regatta in Antigua.

Two days later, a major search operation covering 4,000 square miles of the Atlantic was suspended with no sign of the yacht's crew.

It's not been confirmed what specifically prompted the search for the four men to resume - but the move comes a day after an online petition calling on US authorities to restart the search collected more than 200,000 signatures.

The families of the missing sailors maintain their insistence that the men may well have survived the rough ocean conditions in their liferaft, despite the US Coast Guard estimating a survival time of just 20 hours.

Veteran ocean-crossers Sir Richard Branson and Tony Bullimore have also backed the families' belief that the conditions were potentially survivable.

However, experts suggest it "highly unlikely" that rescue teams missed sighting any liferaft during last weekend's search.

A sighting of what's thought to be the upturned hill of the Cheeky Rafiki by the cargo ship Maersk Kure midway between Cape Cod and the Azores has yet to be confirmed.

BBC News has more on the story HERE.

Published in Offshore
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#Offshore - Almost 60,000 people have signed an online petition urging the US Coastguard to resume its search for four British offshore sailors feared lost after their yacht disappeared midway across the Atlantic last week.

As reported yesterday on Afloat.ie, the Cheeki Rafiki was returning to the UK from Antigua in the West Indies when it got into difficulty on Thursday 15 May, with all contact lost the following day.

Its last known heading was the Azores, and US and Canadian search teams combed a 4,000 square mile section of the Atlantic between there and Antigua over the weekend.

The search was suspended after two days with no signs of life, a spokesperson for the US Coastguard saying: "We believe that we would have found them by now if we were going to find them."

But as Practical Boat Owner reports, friends and family of the missing crew -Paul Goslin, Steve Warren, James Male and skipper Andrew Bridge - have called on the search to continue and give them a chance to be found despite the rough conditions at sea, with evidence suggesting the four made it to their life raft.

The hull of their 40ft racing yacht is believed to have been spotted by a container ship, which passed a vessel of its description upturned in the mid Atlantic.

Practical Boat Owner has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Offshore
Tagged under

#Offshore - Mail Online reports that four British sailors are missing at sea after their yacht is thought to have capsized midway across the Atlantic.

Paul Goslin (56), Steve Warren (52) James Male (23) and 21-year-old skipper have been named as the four crew of the 40ft yacht Cheeki Rafiki, which had been returning to the UK from Antigua Sailing Week in the Caribbean when it got into difficulties on Thursday 15 May.

After contact with the yacht was lost on Friday 16 May, US and Canadian searched teams launched a major operation across 4,000 square miles of ocean between the yacht's last recorded position off Antigua and their last known heading the Azores.

But after two days with no signs of life, the four experienced offshore sailors are now feared dead.

A spokesperson for the US Coastguard said: "We believe that we would have found them by now if we were going to find them."

Mail Online has more on the story HERE.

Published in Offshore
Page 23 of 34

The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.

Competitions

The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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