Onward and Upward for Oman Sail

In the seven years since its inception Oman Sail has established a significant presence on the international sailing scene. From around-the-world and other offshore record attempts and multiple victories in the Extreme Sail Series to hosting major dinghy world championships in Oman, the government-backed operation has made a big splash. We sat down with CEO, David Graham, to find out more about what Oman Sail had achieved under his leadership and what might lie in store for the future.

Autopilot technology steers Vendee Globe leaders right

Sailing fans around the world have been marvelling the blistering performance of the Vendee Globe leading pair, Armel Le Cléac'h, Alex Thomson, whose state of the art foiling IMOCA 60s have been shattering race record since they left Les Sables D’Olonnes almost five weeks ago. The pace of the French and British skippers has been relentless and has earned them a lead of over a thousand nautical miles on the chasing pack. Both averaged more than 20 knots through the Atlantic between the start and the Cape of Good Hope and there has been no let up since. A large part of these remarkable performances can be attributed to the boats’ new foil systems, but spare a though also for the hardworking autopilot systems that enable the skippers to keep the hammer down day and night – even while they snatch a fitful 40 winks.

Marcus Spillane on the new Olympic medal racing format

Aside from his day job as a private equity entrepreneur in New York, Irishman Marcus Spillane occupies a unique position in sailing’s Olympic classes structure. 42-year-old Spillane and his Canadian business partner, Ben Remocker, control the three fastest Olympic classes – the 49er, 49erfx and the Nacra 17 – and the duo are leading from the front in the campaign to promote sailing to a larger global audience of sports fans. We caught up with Spillane at the World Sailing Conference in Barcelona shortly where he and Remocker had just had their proposal for a new format for the medal race day at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games approved by the World Sailing Executive.

Melges 24 world title up for grabs in Miami

The 2016 Melges 24 World Championship taking place this week in Miami, Florida marks a return to the big league in the United States for the class that launched the asymmetric sportsboat revolution back in 1993. Sail Racing Magazine editor Justin Chisholm previews the 74-boat championship on the eve of racing getting underway.

Now for something completely different

If I asked you to close your eyes and picture yourself at a blue sky, warm water regatta this winter, what do you conjure up? Key West Race Week? Antigua Sailing Week? Maybe the St. Thomas International Regatta? What would you be racing? A Melges 24 or 32? A TP52 or Maxi 70? Those are the type of fantasy scenarios I come up with too. But how about something different? Something a tad more challenging and out of the ordinary? Like a 186-mile race through the islands of the Zanzibar Archipelago on a 16-foot sailing outrigger-canoe dug out of a mango tree?

Giovanni Soldini and the art of ocean flight

He has been Italy’s most famous ocean going yachtsman for more than two decades but Giovanni Soldini remains very much at the cutting edge of yacht racing technology.  Soldini's unorthodox style and heroic ocean racing exploits made him a household name in his home country and now the 50-year old skipper is flying the flag for Italy again with a major breakthrough in the largely uncharted waters of offshore foiling.

Interview: Sebastien Rogues – Team ENGIE

If Sebastien Rogues was a start-up business entrepreneur rather than a professional yacht racer, we would describe his abrupt switch two years ago from a successful solo ocean racing to skippering a five-man crew on an inshore foiling catamaran, as a strategic ‘pivot’. We caught up with the young French skipper this summer to find out his short and long term plans.