Dec 24, 2011


Photo: Marcela Zapiola - Arg Nats 2011.

The Mayan calendar ends next year, if so I had a really good life, too good, I'm really grateful to God and my family to allowed it, they are key for a great balance I can make after 39 years.

Every endeavour or project I 've been involved, I have left everything I can offer and now that Catsailing takes the 100% of my everyday life with the racing, building, the F18 class and this blog I feel really lucky to be doing what I like.

Thanks to all for the good vibes and feedback, only received one personal 'hate' mail through all these years regarding my activities on the class or the blog a few weeks ago.
So the average is quite high and positive and I will try to continue this path promoting the sport and everyone involved.

Looking forward to a great 2012, as I think we have some years left in spite of the omens...

All the Best,
Catamaran Racing, News & Design.

Dec 22, 2011

Olympics 2016, Evaluation Trial: March 2012, Santander, España

From ISAF website:
The evaluation will be held from 17 to 25 March 2012 at Prince Felipe High Performance Sailing Centre, Santander, Spain.
Women's Two Person Skiff
+ Mixed Multihull
Start your engines, this is going to be fun, all builders pushing to be selected, but I already know who is going to take the spot. Bernie Benitez , F18 Spain Pres, will be there for sure telling us the story.
Image above: The Gaeblers will be there.
The biggest doubt will be if the selected boat will create new fleets Worldwide.

New ride with Mirsky on the Seacart 26

I like the intro...csn style. Sent by Gustav Morin (onboard too)

Dec 21, 2011

Ski Season next Summer? South, Argentina South.

Ok I know, not much surfing in the higher North right now, many of you in Europe and USA are in sailing offseason, a some are having some snowboarding or ski trips.
For those hardcore fanatics I have an option for your next 2012 summer, first you come down to Argentina, and you go to Las Leñas backcountry expeditions and many other options at Bariloche, Chapelco etc, then in Buenos Aires you can train with us in our competitive F18 fleet and finally you go directly to Los Angeles for the 2012 F18 Worlds in september.
These guys put a 'comment' I removed, on their ski trip services to Arg, check them here

Dec 20, 2011

New Nacra F16 Sailing

These Trials are going to get interesting.
Some surprises coming beyond the Tornado, Phantom project and the AC Design team Winged bet, as a little bird told me weeks ago, also some additional bids as this other birdy told me some months ago...

One thing is for sure, the sailors that will aim to an olympic campaign here in Argentina, don't give a dime, they have their preferences of course, but they are just expecting these trials results to start specific training, beyond sailing and racing the F18, although next year the F16 Fleet in Europe, USA and Australia will get more Pros onboard for sure, even before the Trials

Dec 19, 2011

Americas Cup Uncovered #21

As always there will be people resisting change, useless legal discussions were a waste of time in the past but in the end you can´t stop evolution, temporary forced brakes, are just that.
The old establishment always trying to keep their personal power, like some mnas did with the Tornado and multihulls out of the Olympics.
After this, only hard headed, stubborn and self-serving dinos will like to go back to monohulls.

Edit: Hi Jeff, good reference, here it is the Perth Match Racing Finals , the link goes directly to the action
Really good action, but as you said lots of umpire calls and boats rolling constantly, I think is good action on the wind. And that's where we also have a better range.

I also enjoyed the 2007AC Final, while listening at the office by the live radio channel and it was lots of fun.
But you can´t beat these AC45s or any other close Multihull match racing in my opinion.
The broadcasting at Plymouth and Cascais were the best sport events I ever saw, and I like to watch and practiced football, rugby, tennis, windsurf - surf, squash, snowboarding, Golf ... you name it , and even enjoyed MLB and American football I followed once.

Below Perth Women Match racing Finals got directly to 5Mins 52 Secs or follow this link

Dec 18, 2011

Perfection: Surfing China's Tidal Wave

This is no Rio de la Plata, although I wish we had this tidal waves like the ones featured here and other found in the Amazon.

Dec 16, 2011

AC45s: Backes to join Energy Team

It was a matter of time only, for Olivier Backes to be called to duty on an America's Cup French team.
Now it seems he will be joining his partner Arnaud Jarlegan on the Energy Team as told by Bruno Peyron:

The General Manager of Energy Team, Bruno Peyron was keen to congratulate Arnaud and Olivier: "Well done Olivier and Arnaud! This was an impressive performance after just a week of training on a completely new boat and just a year after their World championship title. Olivier wasn’t able to join us in 2011 because of a busy professional schedule. We hope that in 2012 he will be able to join the Energy Team group following on from this success.”

So Energy already was one of my favorites teams with only Loick Peyron, then calling Arnaud , Yann and now having one of our best helms on board will make them an even stronger team.
Being saying this since day 1, watch out with Energy.

The elite of the "beachcat" racing scene is fullfilling the ranks of this Americas Cup, some missing though...
You can read Olivier Backes interview here

Olivier and Arnaud were crowned F18 European Champs last weekend  and they are also the 2010 F18 World Champs. Will try to get Arnaud for his interview on the F18 and the AC45s run with Energy.

Dec 14, 2011

F18 Europeans: Images by Gran Canaria SailingCenter

All Photos by Gran Canaria Sailing Center. more than 600 images of the Europeans here
More girls crewing... a post Mixed Olympic effect?

F18 Rules Fact Sheet: Two Cloths

This is quite simple too:
April 2010 Published Rules

(a) The construction shall be soft sail, single-ply sail.
(b) The body of the sail shall consist of the same woven and/or laminated ply
throughout with the exception of the window which may be different.


Almost nothing to argue here, a clear rule stating that the body of sail must be made of only one type of cloth, for ie "Apen 06" pentex

After the 2011 Worlds mess on PSA, and after a list of SI sails were rightly banned, a second complaint started to circulate in the WC: That SI Main sails were illegal for using two cloths on rule G.3.4.b
Take account that I was the one reporting and confirming that the 2010 world champ sail currently in Argentina had two cloths too.

- The big question mark here again was: Why if some on the class knew that these sails were illegal since Erquy (remember I've been told that SI was warned even before 2010 Worlds)  only acted one year later letting the sailors buying illegal stuff for that period, including two Arg sailors that bought two sets on the spot after the 2010 champs were crowned.

So a vote was proposed on the WC to ban or grandfathering Two Cloth mainsails and these facts were evident, plus the sails were certified by measurers for a whole year and the builder stamped the two cloths specs on each sail not hiding the fact that it was made of two cloths.

The sails were illegal but it wasn´t that simple as described above.
Some additional details pointed by the chief measurer like the wording on G.3.4.b (above) where it says  "....same woven and/or laminated ply"  
AND/OR being not applicable as if the sail should be made of only one cloth you can´t have that wording!
But this is a minor detail , plus new waste of time now  on the meaning on the word "ply" (will attack that later)

So when I first knew about this two cloth issue I said and wrote to the management: "This guy Udin is playing with us  , he needs the axe over his head immediately."

But when I start investigating a little further and above facts were known, it was clear it was not all that black/white on the two cloths, and weighting that the class didn´t reacted on time to prevent sailors buying illegal  stuff , plus full speculation from others on when to protest or report, plus the sails being stamped and certified measurement I decided that in this case a grandfathering of existing sails was needed.

So again like the Shockwave affair, my main goal was to protect the sailors, the class didn´t look for them, as some knew these sails were illegal and not acted in a timely manner. And who was paying for the class and builder errors?
Just the amateur riders, as the Pros will always get a new set of sails like Backes-Jarlegan use to win the F18 Europeans.

The class targeted one builder, not looking and not caring of  the amateurs and acted in a different way compared to the Shockwave grandfathering. Another example of (in my view) biased and unfair actions.

Again: Two cloths mains? who cares now! Only the unprotected sailors that bought in good faith.
And what is the best part on this? A new "clarification/patch" is coming for the jib and spi.
More patches, more loopholes, more mess, more spam reactions.

This is not the way to manage the leading Racing Catamaran Class World Wide.

F18 Rules Fact Sheet: Illegal Spinnakers

As minutes are not still published I guess is time to go to the details on my recent posts.

- Backes and Jarlegan won at Erquy with main sail of two cloths and psa patch
- I'm told that SI sails was warned that those sails were illegal on those two items above.
- No protest was issued at Erquy

2011 Worlds
- Accusations on Carbon were issued one day before the event at the WC meeting.
- In the middle of the event a request for info was filled on SI sails. That request ended on an official protest regarding the use of cloth not on the approved list. PSA is a polyester sticky cloth similar to window material that was used on the corners of the sails as reinforcement.
More details

As a firecback Udin reviewed the rules and found out that all spis were illegal:
April 2010 Published Rules and valid at the 2011 Worlds:

(a) The construction shall be: soft sail, single ply sail.
(b) Primary and secondary reinforcement is permitted at the sail corners
and the recovery points, and have to comply with the Sailcloth Appendix.

You go to the Sailcloth Appendix (at the end of the Rules Doc link above) and you will find this text:

Spinnaker Reinforcements
Any sail cloth on the spinnaker list, according to ERS.

In short in the Spinnaker cloth list there is no Dacron to be found.
Dacron is a must for making spinnakers work or not breaking apart, and is used as standard reinforcement by all builders.

Previous rules had the following text: "any woven polyester".for reinforcements.

So as all spinnakers on the Class are made with Dacron reinforcement all spis were illegal on hard written rules at 2011 Worlds. By error, oblivion or whichever reason you may want to assign.

This is a fact confirmed by last 26 Nov minutes:

• Class rules clarification (under article A.8) :
Add in spinnaker reinforcement cloth list the wording dropped
any woven polyester".
Clarification Passed unanimously with immediate action.

So now all Spins are legal again.
Is important to note again that  "any woven polyester" was found in previous rules but not on April 2010 rules valid at the 2011 Worlds.

So you will read now several excuses and positions, but the fact and reality is only one:
All spins were illegal and a 'clarification' was issued to revert that situation. 

What was my concern and others on this point?:
If you kill by the rules you die by the rules, If someone would have protest all spins at the 2011 Worlds the entire fleet would have been banned from the event.
Basically the Class rightly banned A (si sails) for having cloth not on the list but not B (all spinnakers made with reinforcement cloth not on the list)

These series of facts are to show and inform the sailors NOT specific rule points, that as I proved these days are right now quite irrelevant like the two cloth restriction, but how the class is managing the rules making procedures,

publications and further amendments, clarifications, patches etc following a path of continuous mess that will be impossible to manage int he future. Reacting  to which ever loophole a builder can use.
How come we can have a published rule with all spis being illegal? 
I already proposed an internal Challenging Procedure for future rules/clarifications/amendments.

More patches and specific rules will lead to more loopholes , more clarifications and the path for more
issues like the ones that occurred at past Worlds.

The Class needs to calm down and review current rules and adapt them for the next 2 years at least....?
.Next:  Two Cloths issue.

Dec 13, 2011

Jules Verne Trophy: Banque Populaire V blasting speed

Check the Cruising Cat pass...

AC72s: From grinding brute force to complete Athletes

Everytime I see the monohulls crews sitting comfortably and hanging their legs outhere with 'speed face' I can´t help laughing and thinking "these guys need a beachcat crew run".Now if the AC45s look tough for the wait for the AC72s...
Grinders to the fore when AC72’s come online.
"Compared to the old V5 America’s Cup Class sloop, the AC72 has six fewer crew, 45 percent more stability and a 10-meter taller rig… all going at least twice as fast!" Kramers says. "Everything on the AC72 will be powered by the grinders – the wing controls, runners, halyards, sheets, board-canting mechanisms and so forth.

"You will see a transformation in the grinding squad from power-burst athletes to true endurance athletes," Kramers continues. "They’ll be spending lots of time in the gym and increasing their sum power output for a 45 minute race with more than six mark roundings."...
Full article at 

Extreme Sailing Series: Luna Rossa crowned 2011 Champions

 "The Italian team Luna Rossa has won the final Act of 2011 in emphatic style and crowned the Overall Champions of the Extreme Sailing Series™ 2011.
Max Sirena, Paul Campbell-James, Alister Richardson and Manuel Modena, who have raced together on the Extreme 40 all season, hardly put a foot wrong over the 35 races here in Singapore.

They went into the final day with a previously unheard of 56-point lead over their arch rivals for the 2011 title, the French team of Groupe Edmond de Rothschild. There was little Pierre Pennec’s team could do as Luna Rossa put in another strong performance and after 10 races today, Luna Rossa topped the Act 9 leaderboard with a 45-point margin over 2nd placed The Wave, Muscat.

“I'm really happy! Now, finally!” said Sirena. “We close the season well and it wasn't expected because we didn't sail well in the last event. I don't know what happened here but we sailed pretty well and started off the line always in the right position. Tactically and from a crew point of view we were sailing always at 100 per cent which is really good and I'm really proud of the guys. It’s great for our long-term future so we're really, really happy.”

IF18CA Open Matters

If you've been following the blog for a while or if you search the archive you will find only one reference to the International Formula 18 Class Association affairs, that I thought it was needed to bring some light on more than public events at Balaton.
That was about the only one.

As I'm member of the World Council for Argentina I took high care of not filtering any public or private info.

After Balaton the WC has been very active and I've tried to expose my concerns to the management on firebacks if the class continued to follow a patch or 'band aid' path as someone pointed to the rules, with monthly changes/clarifications or spam like reactions and also warning on the future outcomes on those changes and possible unfair actions taken by the WC.

After Nov 26 Paris meeting (decisions were known beforehand) some irregular procedures being officially questioned right now by another WC member,  and the actual highly unfair, in my view, voting system that assigns the control of the class to only four countries If they decide to vote together,  were exposed.

Some hard mails started flying in and I was challenged (?) to publish info on decisions from that meeting as I was told that all decisions of the class should be wide openly distributed. 

I was just questioning why someone present at Paris published on the web info from the meeting before all 'remote' representatives had their copy at that time. Now we all have a copy, but minutes are not officially published yet, thus the two post of the last week on cloths.

So here we are, in a new era of wide spread information available to all F18 sailors.

As a good example of the nonsense and waste of time the class is having right now is the two cloth restriction for the mainsail issue.
I wanted those sails to be grandfathered on the fact that the builder did not hide they were made on two cloths, those sails are hard stamped with the two cloths specs and also on some rules doubts confirmed even by the Chief measurer.

And who do you think informed and reported to the class that the 2010 World Champ sail (curently in Argentina) was illegal too on two cloths?
My goal was to protect the sailors as I pursued the same track on the Shockwave corecell affair after reading Greg Goodall's excellent and unbiased report.
I recommended and quite lively fought for the Shockwaves to be grandfathered to protect the sailors that bought them. As the class did not act to prevent or take care of their investments beyond any builder's fault. The intention of some on the WC was a total ban of the Loday-White  Shockwaves.

So now this two cloth mainsail issue becomes irrelevant for the targeted builder.
Two cloths? what for? who cares now? if that builder has his team winning on a different main sail....
Ahhhh maybe the amateur sailors that bought them in good faith during a whole year including two Argentine sailors that bought them on the spot at Erquy after Backes-Jarlegan were crowned, including the actual winning sail.

Is important to note that some in the class knew at Erquy that those sails were illegal and only acted one year later at Balaton.

So now you might get the picture on who are the ones been damaged on this mess?
The fleet sailors, not the Pros, they just get a new built team set of sails or hulls for that matter.

Be noted then my history on not publishing info on the WC decisions before and I welcome this encouragement to inform the sailors about the class matters that of course concerns them mainly as they are the ones keeping this Class and the builders alive.

Martín Vanzulli

President F18 Argentina
Catamaran Racing News & Design
Racecat Catamaranes

Dec 11, 2011

F18 Europeans at Canarias: Backes & Jarlegan Champs

Great finish for the 2011 F18 Europeans, congrats to Bernie Benitez and the Real Club Nautico de Gran Canaria. Photos Alex Udin and RCNGC.

You need to watch the 8th and 9th TracTrac replays, some really close competition today they had 3 races and good winds. The spanish team of Javier Padrón and Miguel Pérez could not hold the lead but nevertheless an incredible performance for them, and as mentioned yesterday, we hope to have them at LA 2012, great achievement for the level of the Spanish F18 Armada.
Olivier Backes and Arnaud Jarlegan had an excellent day with 3,2,1 for to grab the  European Title.
Francoise Morvan and Matthiew Vandame were 2nd. Full results here although 10th race is missing right now

Also a nice performance for our Arg fleet friends, Pierre LeClainche and Antoine Joubert , they were 7th until of 85, both 25 , for sure the future of the French multihull scene.

Time for an interview with Arnaud Jarlegan, currently the best main sail trimmer on earth? the 2010 Worlds, plus the AC45 performance with Energy and this Euro F18 Cup, put him on the spot.

F18 Europeans: A Perfect Box Rule and two great Sailors

The Formula 18 Box Rule created by Olivier Bovyn and Charles Pierre Barraud, is the perfect Formula, been said many times, but worth remarking this on current scenario.
3 Last Worlds were won by 3 different designs:
- 2009 deKoning-Visser , Nacra Infusion
- 2010 Backes-Jarlegan, Hobie Wildcat
- 2011 Bundock-Van Leeuwen AHPC C2

No need to add anything else but you can even check the top ten on each of these Worlds to have an even better benchmark.
Current monthly change of the rules are not the path to follow, the class needs to establish solid updated rules for the future, and honor the guiding principles of the IF18CA and take good care of sailors investments.

Rules must be respected (on the racing course and inside the management body) and failing to do that must be punished.

The builders and designers will always push the limits, it is their work... just ask Juan K.
We just need a solid updated rules set, so we can stop wasting time in urgency patches and major gaffes like having to grandfather the 100% of class spis.
We need to dedicate our time and efforts to think the class for the next generation of sailors.

On the F18, to date, always the best sailors win, the parody above is just to accentuate the emphasis on this primal concept.
Congrats Olivier Backes and Arnaud Jarlegan for an impressive performance at the F18 Europeans at Canarias.

Dec 10, 2011

Formula 18 Europeans: Locals Padrón-Pérez on top again

Super performance for these locals, Javier Padrón and Miguel Pérez fighting with several world champs. Really consistent on their Wildcat with original Ullmans, and for sure Bernie has something to do as he is the Hobie dealer there and two of the spanish Wildcats are just flying, hope we can see them on next World events with that performance.
Only two points ahead of Backes-Jarlegan, tomorrow we'll have a tough fight for the title.
Full results here: 

More reports on monday.

Extreme Sailing Series Singapur

Barker and Luna Rossa training with the X40s at Singapur. All Photos Extreme Sailing Series

Dec 8, 2011

F18 Europeans at Canaria: Day 2

All Photos by Alex Udin. Left: hey! lots of girls, who are they? someone needs to gather some pics and info, and I know who can do that, my good friend Antoine Joubert! (1st face portrait image)
Locals Rivas-Torner lead, 2nd Tim 'Seacart' Shuwalow-Olf Detlefsen, 3rd Backes-Jarlegan-
Full results here

F18 Europeans: Day 1 images by Udin

All photos sent by Alex Udin.Female crew on pic 1? Poster for the class promotion for sure. Below Banque Populaire team: LeClainche-Joubert. Mitch Booth on a C2 with Ullmans.
I saw 1st, Backes-Jarlegan won on a key tactical move on the first windward mark. TracTrac link above.

Dec 7, 2011

F18 Europeans at Canarias: Locals Padrón-Perez lead

All photos

Local knowledge and of course high performance is paying off for Javier Padrón and Miguel Perez, they are racing on a Hobie Wildcat.
2010 World Champs, Backes-Jarlegan 2nd on the Phantom. Mischa and Bastian, Cirrus R, should be right there but they got two BFD, Black flags.
Mischa: You are having some issues with BFD, please hold the pedal for and additional half second?!
Good to see our Gral Sec, James Baeckler showing he can sail at top level too in 5th overall with his Cirrus R. Full resutls

Formula 18 Arg Nats 2011: Racing Video footage

Perfect start for my friend and Opti World Champ(& Vice) Agustín Krevsiky, also reaching first the windward mark. Days before the event I gave Agustín a brand new set of Landys for his Cap, he also changed crew for the event, top local 29er sailor Billy Lopez Segura. They had several moments like this on the championship but couldn´t maintain on consistency.
Nevertheless he is now fully involved and we expect him to peak next year, watchtout with them at LA ...Billy also has local knowledge on that ABYC Course.

More vids coming.

Dec 6, 2011

F18 Europeans at Canarias:Practice Race images by Udin

All photos sent by Alex Udin. It seems DeKoning-Visser won the practice race as the Trac replay not showed some boats, and no additional info, but tomorrow they will have the first official race.

Dec 5, 2011

F18 Europeans at Canaria:1st Official Race Wednesday 7th

Nice having gps for this event, good on Bernie and the Org.
Photos from
Follow the Races live through TracTrac here
Pratice Race

Race 1
Race 2
Race 3

Race 5
Race 6
Race 4

Race 7
Race 8
Race 9

Race 10
Race 11
Race 12

Race 13
Race 14
Race 15

F18 World Council Meeting outcomes II: All Class Spis ilegal, now Legal.

Take a good look to your F18 chute, as no matter which brand do you own, it is an ilegal spi....well upto Nov 26 decisions on ammendments/Clarifications on Rules it was, based on April 2010 published Rules.
Of course, as we can´t change the 100% of the spis (how come?), the WC issued a rules Clarification, adding text alleged not present by error, oblivion etc. but written on the previous rules version.

So the biggest grandfathering of any class (I might guess) has been taken out by the F18. Hey , we are not going to end sailing Main-Jib only... I'm here for the Spi runs!

Again, detailed info and reports later. When minutes published for all to see.

F18 World Council Nov 26 Meeting outcomes: All SI Crosscut mains with two cloths Banned

All main sails from Sail Innovation using two cloths (Crosscuts) are now prohibited from racing in the Formula 18 Class.
Until Dec 31 2011, all SI sails produced before September 15th may continue to compete. After Jan 1 2012 you'd better get a new use to it.
These decisions applies to the F18 European taking place right now in Canarias.That is why you'll see so many changes in some teams sails as published yesterday.

Minutes were distributed to the NAs representatives (I'm for Argentina).
They are not still published on the IF18CA website, will link them as soon as they are available. I was waiting for them to be online to inform the sailors, but some events forced this post.

Also paint is forbidden so SI and some new projects (about to be launched)  will need to change their production asap. Also check you don´t have some repair made on your boat too or a standard marine polyurethane finish for ie, damn all my original RCF18s are now ilegal too!
Lots of fun to come though, as I forsee more firebacks 2011 Worlds style, where the 100% of class spis were found ilegal.This Class is so fun in the water as in the administrative aspects of it.

One of the major implications on these decisions is that Olivier Backes and Arnaud Jarlegan won the 2010 Crown with ilegal sails with part of the Class knowing about that fact and only acting one year later when all exploded at the 2011 Worlds final day with the PSA Affaire, (Mischa also was with possiblities on that title with SI sails, he ended 2nd) letting sailors from all over the World buying ilegal sails. (Two crews from Argentina bought sails on the spot at Erquy, the actual winning sail and a sister set)

More analysis and info for all the sailors of the F18 World Wide soon.And please ask a for a signed certificate before buying any further equipment of any brand.

Please contact your NA representative for more data too.
Force the builders to comply with the rules and make the class to establish firm basis and a solid consistent and timely decisions to protect your investment in the future.  

Dec 4, 2011

F18 Europeans at Canarias, Training

All Photos sent by Alex Udin: "The conditions are pretty tricky here with big wave and very light wind..."
Olivier 'Backes' on the class with Master AC45 Wing trimmer Arnaud Jarlegan. Both 2010 World Champions at Erquy. (more on that later too)
Check Phantom volume /lines on last pic, also Cirrus 'R' boats from Mischa and Amiot with Nacra/Performance Sails.Click to enlarge.