Archive for » August 6th, 2014«

Did a Boat Racing Champ Fake His Own Death?


A champion boat racer went missing after a boat crash last month, but police don’t think he’s dead. No, according to a flyer officers distributed, which was picked up by the Press of Atlantic City, Andrew Biddle is likely “alive and well and on the run.” The 44-year-old is apparently in all kinds of trouble that might make him flee, Deadspin reports. He co-owns a company called Professional Boat Sales, and was arrested in February over the “fraudulent sale of a boat,” the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

He’s also been accused of selling a used motor as new and writing tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of bad checks. When Biddle’s boat crashed off New Jersey last month, the man who’d accompanied him managed to swim to shore. “We conducted a nearly 20-hour search, but after exhausting all resources, the chances for survival based on water temperature and time in the water is slim,” a Coast Guard official told the Current. Biddle’s attorney told reporters that their questions were “the first I’ve heard” of the story, the Press reports. Earlier this year, a banker faked his own death, and apparently managed to convince even his family.

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Sailing : Rugby lads are World Champions

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TWO 11-year-old boys from Rugby are riding on the the crest of a wave after becoming Junior World Champions in the RS Feva World Championships in Carnac, France in a phenomenal feat of sailing.

Jack Lewis (helm) from Clifton-upon-Dunsmore and Lucas Marshall (crew) came 18th overall out of 183 boats in their RS Feva double-hander (a two person sailing dinghy), and were the highest placed U13s, which means they can now call themselves Junior World and European Champions after winning the continental trophy in May coming second overall out of 48

Jack, who will attend Ashlawn School in September has been sailing since he was six when his dad Martyn taught him to crew a Miracle, and two years later the father-and-son duo won the National Miracle Championships.

Since then Jack, a member of the Draycote Water Sailing Club (DWSC), has been racing in an RS tera Sport, (one man dinghy), and last year became the UK National champion and also retained the Inland championship title and came 2nd in the RS Tera Worlds.

His crew Lucas Marshall, who attends Bilton Grange School, only took up the sport two years ago when he joined (DWSC) and the two teamed up in 2013. In May this year they sailed in Bruinisse, Netherlands where they won the Junior European Championship.

“We are all very pleased for them. When they are competing I am always nervous for them out on the water but they won the first two races and we were thinking ‘my goodness how did they do that.’” said Jack’s mum Ruth.

“Martyn’s dad bought a dinghy when he was 11 and he has entered lots of competitions over the years including being second in the European Championships and seventh in the World Championships in a Fireball.

“But we all say that Jack is a natural. He goes into a different mode and he sees things, constantly looking to see where the wind is and he wants to win.

“Hopefully he will go on and become adult world champion and fulfill his dream of being an Olympian.”

The six-day competition on the Brittany coast ran from Sunday, June 27 to Friday, August 1, including a rest day on the Wednesday, with the first two days acting as qualifying rounds of three 45-minute races each day. After the first day Jack and Lucas were second overall and this put them in a good position for the rest of the week.

Following the preliminary rounds the boats were split into three groups with Jack and Lucas being put in the highest group, the gold fleet.

They then competed in eight races within their fleet, in sometimes high winds, against some of the best under-18 sailors in the world and managed to finish 18th and fend of challenges from the other under-13 teams to become World Junior Champions.

“In France they were racing 17-year-olds and were two of the youngest pairings – it’s not very often you get two 11-year-olds competing,” said Ruth.

Jack said of his victory: “I can just concentrate when I’m sailing, I knew we had beaten the second place pair and I felt really happy and Lucas had the biggest grin on his face ever.”

They will now be taking part in the Royal National Yachting Association (RYA)national junior squad selection at Northampton and Torbay in September but before then Jack will be competing in the RS Tera Pro Nationals in three week’s time having moved up from the RS tera sport.

The RYA squad selectors call up sailors from junior to Olympic level and will be looking at who they want to take into the national junior squad for GBR.

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For sail in Bristol: Part history, part seamanship

herreshoff sailing1For sailing enthusiasts, the name “Herreshoff” is often the topic of conversation in reference to the high quality wooden yachts crossing oceans and finish lines.

But for local boaters who want to experience both sailing and sailing history, crossing Bristol Harbor is an education in both seamanship and turn-of-the-18th century craftsmanship.

Built for the children of wealthy yacht owners, the 12.5-foot sloops, Swallow, Bonita and Hurrah were moved smoothly through the choppy waters of Bristol Harbor on Wednesday, July 30, as part of the adult sailing program offered through the Herreshoff Marine Museum Sailing School. From June through August, sailing and history share the cockpit discussion inside the 16.5-foot hull, as does the timeless enjoyment of being on the water on a warm summer evening.

Program director Maria (pronounced, ‘Mariah’) Powell is familiar with sailing the wooden boats, and is glad to be part of a program that sustains a time often overshadowed by fiberglass and composite made craft. On the water, the century-old boats are sailed as much with TLC as they are with an understanding of their limitations.

“Treat them like your grandmother,” Ms. Powell said of the philosophy taught on the wooden craft. “My dad owns a couple of Herreshoffs, so I grew up around that mentality.”

Minus the complex systems of pulleys, lines and sheets used to sail larger and faster vessels, the students aboard the Herreshoff sloops become familiar with recognizing and using wind direction and the basics of tacking, while understanding the parts of the boats and their design.

“There’s definitely a different feel on a wooden boat than a fiberglass one. You need to listen to the boat,” she said.

The sailing program, offered to children and adults, with a special session offered for women (women also have their own class at Bristol Yacht Club), is part of the ongoing presence that the Herreshoff line continues in Bristol. Halsey Herreshoff, grandson of the late Captain Natanael Greene Herreshoff, continues to design world class wooden yachts and offers lectures on the family history of sailing. And inside the marine museum at 1 Burnside st., more than 50 wooden boats dating back to the 1800s are on display, a reminder of the significance that Bristol played and continues to play in the sailing industry.

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Sailing: NZL's World Champions go racing in Rio

The NZL Sailing Team’s big guns went racing today in Rio at the Olympic Sailing Test Event (Aquece Rio – International Sailing Regatta 2014) with some solid results.

49erFX skiff sailors Alexandra Maloney and Molly Meech opened the regatta with two consecutive bullets, following that up with a 7th and a 4th to hold 2nd overall in the women’s skiff class.

The reigning world champions, who compete in one of two classes new to the Olympic programme, describe the day’s conditions; “It was quite puffy and really up and down and we had to sail on a lifted tack and try to piece together a nice beat. For the first couple we managed to do that but on the other two we got a bit lost.”

Molly Meech continues, “Coming to Rio for the first time we’ve been trying to learn as much as we can from the venue. So far it’s been pretty tricky as most days have been quite different.”

Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie have also made a strong start collecting a 7th and two 2nd places in today’s three races in the Women’s 470. The world and Olympic champions describe the 17 boat fleet as ‘small but high quality’ noting that this is quite different from the 50+ strong fleets more typical in international racing. Numbers are restricted, much like they are at the Olympic Games sailing regatta.

Jo Aleh says, “We were out on the back paddock today, off Copacabana beach – a long way off and a good 45 minute tow, then sail back because it was too rough to tow.”

“I don’t think we have ever actually sailed in waves like the ones we were out in today, actual ocean swell. Completely awesome, and rather out of control.”

“We had three races in decent breeze, starting out rather slowly and learning race by race, to be leading the second and third races at times, but never managed to quite finish it off. Quite frustrating, as we seemed to have been a little overwhelmed by all the moving water and just forgot some of the basics.”

In the 49er Peter Burling and Blair Tuke are lying 4th after their first day of the regatta. They sailed four races today and recorded a 9th, two 2nds and a 14th. Marcus Hansen and Josh Porebski are lying 9th.

Racing resumed in the Finn class with both Josh Junior and Andrew Murdoch lifting their overall position on the leader board to 7th and 8th respectively and sharing equal points. Junior sailed away with a win in the last race of the day.

The Nacra multihull fleet sailed three races to kick off the series; New Zealand’s Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders have made a great start with a 3rd place in their opener, then a 5th and a 6th to hold 4th place overall just one point off 3rd.

In the Men’s 470 Paul Snow-Hansen and Daniel Willcox are in 10th while Women’s windsurfer Natalia Kosinska is in 8th.

New Zealand’s Laser sailors in Rio, Sam Meech and Andy Maloney, were on the water for three races today. Meech is the best placed of the two lying 8th, Maloney is in 13th. a small (but high quality fleet) of about 16 boats, so a nice change from the 50 boats at Europeans in Athens!

Aqueece Rio – International Sailing Regatta 2014, 2-9 August 2014

2nd Alexandra Maloney and Molly Meech (49erFX) – 6 points (1, 1, 7, 4)

4th Peter Burling and Blair Tuke (49er) – 13 points (9, 2, 2, 14)

9th Marcus Hansen and Josh Porebski (49er) – 25 points (11, 3, 11, 12)

3rd Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie (Women’s 470) – 4 points (7, 2, 2)

10th Paul Snow-Hansen and Daniel Willcox (Men’s 470) – 15 points (8, 9, 7)

8th Natalia Kosinska (Women’s RS:X) – 15 points (13, 2, 15, 2, 12)

7th Josh Junior (Finn) – 25 points (5, 16, 18, 3, 1)

8th Andrew Murdoch (Finn) – 25 points (10, 12, 8, 4, 3)

4th Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders (Nacra 17) – 8 points (3, 5, 6)

8th Sam Meech (Laser) – 11 points (3, 12, 8)

13th Andy Maloney (Laser) – 21 points (9, 13, 12)

16th Sara Winther (Laser Radial) – 26 points (12, 14, 14)

Support and coaching: Jez Fanstone, Mark Howard, Nathan Handley, Simon Briscoe and Hamish Willcox, Craig Panther, David Slyfield, Louise Johnson, Christel Dunshea- Mooij

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