Inaugural Viper 640 International Championship in Bermuda

There are over 50 Viper 640s already registered for the International Championship.
There are over 50 Viper 640s already registered for the International Championship.

The Viper 640 Class Association announced its inaugural Viper 640 International Championship to be hosted by the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club and the Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club on Bermuda’s Great Sound November 16-19, 2016, preceded by a warm-up regatta November 13-14.

With Viper 640 fleets active in seven nations across three continents, 2016 marks the 20th anniversary of the design of the Viper 640 and the 10th anniversary of the relaunch of the Class Association. The Class Association is celebrating these milestones by establishing this prestigious new trophy open to Viper teams from around the world.

“The Class’s first International Championship is indicative of our growth in recent years with more and more Vipers sailing in Australia and Europe,” noted Viper 640 Class President Dr. Jim Sears. “This follows the Class’s first European Championship on Lake Garda last year and Australian Championships that have been hosted in Fremantle and Sydney. We are going to find out who is the best Viper team is in the world and I can’t imagine a more spectacular location in the world to do this than on the Great Sound in Bermuda.”

There are over 50 Viper 640s already registered for the International Championship, with representative teams coming from North America, Europe and Australia, and it is anticipated this number will grow in the coming months. This will be the largest one–design keel boat regatta ever hosted in Bermuda.

“This is already the largest one-design keel boat regatta that has ever taken place in the history of Bermuda, and hosting the Viper 640 International Championship in Bermuda is a perfect fit,” said 2016 International Championship Chair Doug De Couto. Royal Bermuda Yacht Club immediate past Commodore Somers Kempe noted that, “With the America’s Cup to be sailed in these same waters in 2017, the sailing world’s eyes are on Bermuda. We are the newest national fleet in the Viper 640 Class and we intend to throw a memorable competition and even more memorable parties for our visitors.”

The Viper 640 was originally designed and built in 1996.The Class was relaunched in the U.S. in 2006 with a new, self-governing Viper 640 Class Association and a new builder (Rondar Raceboats in the UK).

The founders of the new Class Association had a simple but ambitious mission: they wanted a fast, fun, easy-to-sail, affordable sport boat that would reinvigorate amateur one-design sailing. The grass roots growth phenomenon that followed was initially aimed at the U.S., but word spread quickly, with Viper fleets springing up in Canada, Australia, the UK, and Bermuda.

The International Championship will be held concurrently with the 20th Anniversary North American Championship. The overall winner will be crowned as the first Viper 640 International Champion and the highest-placing North American team will receive the Class’s coveted North American Championship trophy.

Rondar Raceboats will be delivering containers of new boats to Bermuda in time for the International Championship. Anyone interested in chartering or purchasing a Viper in Bermuda should contact Rondar’s Dan Tucker.

The Viper 640 International Championship and North American Championship Regatta is made possible thanks to the generosity of its sponsors: The Bermuda Tourism Authority, EFG International, Bermuda International Shipping Ltd., Bermuda Container Line, Somers Isles Shipping, Bermuda Forwarders, Goslings, Gubinelli Wines, Oleander Cycles, and Newstead Belmont Hills Resort.

For more information about the International and North American Championship Regatta contact event chair Doug De Couto ( or Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Commodore Somers Kempe (

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Forming foundations of America’s Cup village

Looking toward the South Basin project from Dockyard.  By the Oracle Team Base.
Looking toward the South Basin project from Dockyard. By the Oracle Team Base.

A huge cargo of steel piles has been unloaded in Dockyard as part of the South Basin project.

The piles will be drilled into the seabed to secure the reclaimed land that will form the foundations of the America’s Cup village.

The steelwork arrived in the West End last week on board the BBC Tennessee from Baltimore in the United States. Project managers expect to start driving the piles into the earth within the next couple of weeks.

Andrew Dias, the general manager of the West End Development Corporation, told The Royal Gazette that the project was “progressing well” and remained on time and on budget.

“The steel as well as the other infrastructure is now on site, although obviously not on the reclaimed land as the aggregate is still being spread out,” he said.

“We have taken delivery of 2.15 tonnes of steel piles, 1,726 sheet piles, 37 Y-shaped piles and 39 anchor piles.

“The steel work to create the perimeter is expected to take around eight weeks to complete, at which time a concrete cap will be added to the steel structure.”

From Royal Gazette, Simon Jones

Team Convexity Wins M32 Series Bermuda

M32 Fleet heads to Bermuda
M32 Series Bermuda will run from January to April with one event per month. photo:

Team Convexity won the first in the M32 Series Bermuda, which saw an international fleet of sailors compete on Bermuda’s waters for the first of four events scheduled this year.

Seven races were sailed on the second day with the Convexity team with skipper Don Wilson having the best day with four victories, two seconds and a third for their 11 points. With their 16 points on the first day and the 11 on second day they posted a 15 race total of 27 points.

Joint Day One leaders The Magenta Project team with skipper Sally Barkow recorded three wins, three second place finishes, to go along with a third for their 12 points and are in second overall with 28 points.

Charlie Enright with his 11th-hour Racing team had a mixed day, they finished second in two races, they also recorded 3 thirds and 2 fourth place finishes for 21 points and they are third overall with 52 points.

M32 Bermuda Series Leaderboard after 15 Races

  1. 27 Convexity – Don Wilson
  2. 28 The Magenta Project – Sally Barkow
  3. 52 11th-hour Racing – Charlie Enright
  4. 66 Jarvinen & Lumijavi Sailing Team – Mikkel Rossberg
  5. 82 Valhalla – Hakan Svensson

The series will run from January to April with one event per month, with the next event slated to take place from February 19-21.

After the event concluded the organisers said, “What a great event the M32 Series Bermuda turned out to be this year!

“A huge thanks to the organisers, the volunteers, staffs, umpires, race committee, and more that make the M32 Series Bermuda a success! The event wouldn’t happen without you! See you again on February 19th-21st.”

source:  bernews

M32 Fleet heads to Bermuda

M32 Fleet heads to Bermuda
M32 Series Bermuda will run from January to April with one event per month. photo:

London, United Kingdom (December 29, 2015): A fleet of six M32’s will kick off the 2016 M32 Series Bermuda from 8-10 January sailing on Bermuda’s ‘Great Sound’, the same race area chosen for the 35th America’s Cup in 2017. The inaugural M32 Series Bermuda will run from January to April with one event per month.

Organised by M32 North America in conjunction with the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, the fleet for the opening event will consist of private owners and professional teams including Volvo Ocean Race skipper Charlie Enright, and former Olympic sailor and Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year Sally Barkow.

Barkow, who was recently awarded a Tour Card for the 2016 World Match Racing Tour (WMRT), is also taking the opportunity in Bermuda to prepare for the Tour Championship season starting in Fremantle, Australia in March;

“We are looking forward to racing the M32s in Bermuda this winter and are very fortunate to be supported by Chicago Match Race Centre for the use of an M32. Our international all-female team will be in Bermuda to gain as much experience as possible in the M32s as well as enjoying the current America’s Cup excitement in Bermuda and racing on the ‘Great Sound’.”

Competing against Barkow is Newport based Volvo Ocean Race skipper, Charlie Enright. He and Mark Towill will be racing as their own team, 11th-hour Racing;

“After the Volvo Ocean Race, we have been looking for ways to keep some members of our team together and the M32 Series Bermuda is a natural fit: exciting racing, close to our east coast base, and on the M32 which is really taking off as an exciting class in the sport. We look forward to this new challenge and to pushing the other teams on the Great Sound!”

Completing the full line-up for the first event are private owners Mikkel Rossberg and Olli- Pekka from Denmark, Don Wilson from the United States and M32 Series founder Håkan Svensson from Sweden.

For the second race of the Series from 19-21 February, five-time match racing world champion Ian Williams will be joining the fleet with his new GAC Pindar branded M32. The Bermuda Series will provide valuable training time for Williams and his team with their the M32 in preparation for the opening event of the World Match Racing Tour in March;

“Team GAC Pindar are very much looking forward to sailing in the M32 Bermuda Series this winter. With the World Match Racing Tour transitioning into the M32 it will give us a great opportunity to hone our skills ready for the 2016 World Tour, besides which it will be great fun sailing the boats in Bermuda!”

To provide the easy launching of the fleet in Bermuda, the M32 team have been loaned the use of Darrell’s Island, a small island in the southeast of the Great Sound. Owned by the Bermuda Government, Darrell’s Island was formerly used as a flying boat station during the second world war for BOAC (British Overseas Airways Corporation) In 1942, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill famously visited Bermuda on his return from Washington DC, landing briefly at Darrell’s Island before making the transatlantic journey to Great Britain.

M32 Series Bermuda 2016
Event 1 8-10 January
Event 2 19-21 February
Event 3 11-13 March
Event 4 15-17 April

For more information, visit
For more information about M32 World, visit

Report by Event Media

RC44 Class Sailing Series Coming to Bermuda

RC44 Class Coming to Bermuda

After the season opener in Bermuda, the Tour will move on to some of Europe’s most celebrated sailing venues, including Spain, Britain , Portugal and Malta.
RC44 Sweden Cup 2013 | photo: Nico Martinez / RC44 Class Association

The tenth year for RC44 Class competition will make its first-ever visit to Bermuda to kick off the 2016 season before competing at some of Europe’s most celebrated sailing venues, including a return to the beautiful Sotogrande, Spain, where an early World Championship will be held. Marking the half-way stage of the Tour with a debut in Gosport/Portsmouth, United Kingdom, the teams will then revisit Cascais, Portugal, an old Class favourite, before heading back to Valletta, Malta to finish off the season in the historic ‘City of the Knights’.

With ideal sailing conditions on offer, Bermuda was an easy venue choice for the Tour. The Royal Bermuda Yacht Club’s Regatta Chairman, Andy Cox, explained why Bermuda is looking forward to welcoming the teams: “Bermuda is honoured to be the latest host location in the RC44 series. Our island is globally recognized as providing some of the most challenging, as well as beautiful, waters for sailing competition and we hope the RC44 teams will enjoy the experience.”

Taking place just inside the Mediterranean, close to Gibraltar on Spain’s Andalucian coast, Peninsula Petroleum Sailing Team will play host for the RC44 Sotogrande World Championship. Gibraltar-based owner John Bassadone commented: “It’s very special to have the Worlds in Sotogrande. We were there last year and got quite lucky with the wind. It’s great to sail where you spend a lot of time and I think everyone had a lot of fun. For it to also be the World Championship this year, it’s fantastic.”

Gosport/Portsmouth will provide a home-water advantage for five-time RC44 Championship Tour winner Team Aqua. Owner Chris Bake, who will be hoping to regain the championship title in 2016, said: “It’s a class that has a lot of appeal, not only because of the dynamic sailing, but also because of the events we go to and the social element to the class. There are some pretty good people involved and I think by bringing it to the UK, which will be the first time ever for the class, hopefully we bring some attention to potential UK owners who don’t know the class or haven’t really looked at it that much.”

The Island will host the RC44 Class event March 2 to 6 with competition in the high-performance monohull racing yachts taking place in the Great Sound.
Bermuda Sailing News – RC44 Class is coming!

The Tour is also excited to be returning to Cascais, Portugal and Valletta, Malta – both venues that have previously delivered challenging and exciting conditions for the sailors.

The competition within the Class is at an all time high. Every team has the ability to win races and many are capable of challenging for the overall victory. Proven by the fact that a different RC44 team won each of the five events this season. Embraced by owners and the world’s most talented sailors alike, the 2016 RC44 Championship Tour line up is looking as strong as ever.

The RC44 Class will celebrate its tenth year in 2016 by visiting two new sailing venues, one of which is Bermuda.
The event will take place in Bermuda from March 2 through March 6, 2016.


Class website:

Source: RC44
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US Marshals seize Oracle Team USA’s boat prototype

A sea of boats follows Oracle Team USA as they pass by Pier 27 after defeating Emirates Team New Zealand to win the America's Cup Finals in San Francisco, CA Wednesday September 25, 2013. Photo: Michael Short, The Chronicle  Photo: Michael Short, The Chronicle
A sea of boats follows Oracle Team USA as they pass by Pier 27 after defeating Emirates Team New Zealand to win the America’s Cup Finals in San Francisco, CA Wednesday September 25, 2013. Photo: Michael Short, The Chronicle Photo: Michael Short, The Chronicle

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Federal marshals seized America’s Cup champion Oracle Team USA’s prototype boat in San Francisco on Monday, before it could be shipped out of the country, in response to a lien filed by a fired sailor.

Marshals went to the team’s base at Pier 80 and determined that the souped-up, 45-foot catamaran and its various components and wing sail were in three shipping containers the team was preparing to send to Bermuda.

Marshals Service spokesman Frank Conroy said the containers were stickered and locked.

In maritime law terms, the boat was arrested.

US Marshals seize Oracle Team USA’s boat prototype

Conroy said marshals believe the confiscated boat is the catamaran known as 4 Oracle Team USA.

He said marshals had a “very pleasant exchange” with syndicate members.

“We didn’t get the feeling of anyone trying to hide anything from us,” Conroy said.

In a filing Friday, Oracle attorney David E. Russo said the boat that fired sailor Joe Spooner wants confiscated to satisfy the lien was sold to a French syndicate in December.

However, a photo taken shortly after Team France took possession of that boat shows it has hull No. 5. The boat sought by Spooner has the hull No. 4.

In an earlier filing, Oracle contended boat No. 4 hadn’t been launched during Spooner’s tenure with the team. Oracle argued that the boat was mismarked and although it said 4 on the hull, it was actually boat No. 5. Spooner provided evidence showing him sailing and repairing the vessel in question.

The dispute will return to federal court, where Spooner is seeking at least $725,000 in a wrongful termination suit.

“It is a match race and we have the lead at the first mark,” Spooner’s attorney, Patricia Barlow, said in an email to The Associated Press.

The catamaran was built to foil, or ride up on hydrofoils once it reaches a certain speed. Oracle tested the boat on San Francisco Bay in February as it prepares to build a 62-foot catamaran that will be used to defend the America’s Cup in 2017 in Bermuda. Foiling 72-foot catamarans were used in the America’s Cup in 2013, when Oracle Team USA rallied from an 8-1 deficit to win eight straight races and defeat Emirates Team New Zealand.

Spooner, a New Zealander, sued Oracle Team USA last month, saying his contract for $25,000 a month was terminated without cause in January. He was a grinder with Oracle Team USA during its America’s Cup victories in 2010 and 2013.

Chief Magistrate Joseph Spero denied Spooner’s initial complaint on Feb. 23, but said he could file an amended complaint. Barlow filed an amended complaint Friday and clerk Richard Wieking issued a warrant later that day.

Barlow said Spooner had obtained a visa that required him to be working under a fixed-term contract, and that Oracle argued that the sailor had an at-will contract.

Besides the visa issue, Spooner’s complaint alleges that Oracle Team USA retaliated against him for asking if his monthly salary could be raised to $38,000 to cover the expense of relocating his family from New Zealand to Bermuda. Spooner was offered a $4,000 a month relocation housing allowance, but said it would cost around $7,500 a month for suitable housing for his family, as well as other expenses to live on the island for the America’s Cup cycle.

Oracle Team USA is owned by software billionaire Larry Ellison, who is not named in Spooner’s suit.

Marshals said this was the second time an America’s Cup catamaran was “arrested” in San Francisco. In 2012, marshals seized a French team’s cat during a dispute over a salvage claim after the boat broke free from its mooring.

ACBDA’s Mike Winfield encouraged by progress

Mike Winfield, CEO of ACBDA.
CEO of America’s Cup Bermuda Ltd (ACBDA), Mike Winfield is encouraged by progress made by company. photo: royalgazette

Mike Winfield, CEO of the America’s Cup Bermuda Ltd (ACBDA) is encouraged by the progress the fledgling company has made since coming into existence just over a month ago.

The company was created to deliver on Bermuda’s commitments to the America’s Cup organisers and to act as liaison between the America’s Cup and Bermuda.

The ACBDA is a small office working in conjunction with the America’s Cup Event Authority (ACEA) which has responsibility for organising and delivering the events associated with AC35.

“We are pleased and excited about the opportunities the America’s Cup will create over the next several years as well as the legacy benefits for many years to come for Bermuda and its people,” Mr Winfield said.

Yesterday the ACBDA released a progress report and an infographic to show a road map forward from winning the bid to hosting the America’s Cup and to the line-up of events that will play out in Bermuda during the summer of 2017.

Since coming into existence the ACBDA has met with representative groups such as the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation, Bermuda Tourism Authority, Chamber of Commerce, Ascendant and the local sailing community.

The company has assisted America’s Cup syndicates Team Oracle USA, the Cup holders, and Artemis Racing with the design of their bases at the Royal Naval Dockyard and advancing the overall design of the event village.

They have also assisted the ACEA and teams with housing, schools and related relocation issues and finalising the office set-up for the ACBDA and ACEA.

Mr Winfield added: “While we are still in the beginning stages to engage the wider community in America’s Cup-related activities, we are making progress.

“Within the next few weeks we will be selecting a public relations and communications team to assist us in the very important task of community engagement and outreach.

“We were pleased to have interest from eleven parties and the communications committee ultimately reviewed the eight proposals submitted by organisations and individual alliances.”

The ACBDA is owned by Government as the sole shareholder but carries out its role as an independent body, with full accountability to the Government through the Ministry of Economic Development.

The company is headed by chairman Peter Durhager, who is the former chief administrative officer and executive vice-president of RenaissanceRe.

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Grotto Bay Beach Resort is located close to The Swizzle Inn, Crystal Caves and Bailey’s Ice Cream Parlour.

Free Fan Pages and Information for the America’s Cup 2017.