Please select your home edition
upffront 2018 Running Rigging 728x90

Not radical, but definitely new


The latest cruising news from the Northern Hemisphere and the world.
 27 Oct 2017

Not radical, but definitely new

The new Beneteau Oceanis 51.1 under her Code Zero  © John Curnow
Unequivocally, it has been a delight to be in Barcelona to test the new Beneteau Oceanis 51.1. This is a vessel that has been quite captivating, from both an aesthetic and technology point of view. To actually see it in the flesh, against its other new siblings, does indeed serve to indicate more than a new direction, even if they are baby steps to begin the journey.

Unlike a racing boat, a cruiser does have to have a certain appeal beyond its function. Unlike charging across the ocean or around the cans, a cruiser is viewed by its owner in marinas and from ashore in the most delightful bays on the planet. Something that is too powerful, too beamy, too stumpy or suffering from other detracting features just simply will not work.

Too that end, the plumb bow, serious chine from knuckle to transom, chamfer of the topsides into the foredeck, sleek profile and elegant coach house definitely fit the bill. Yet this is not just about the new shape as represented by the Beneteau Oceanis 51.1. On the Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 440/490, the ‘ramps' taking the deck from behind the wheel up to the sides where you can walk around comfortably and unhindered, and the walk-through shrouds, along with their own interpretation of the more volume inboard question, also make a statement.

No control lines at all in the entertaining spaces - they all lead to the helm stations  © John Curnow

So just what is that? Well, in a way it is no different to the paradigm that the earlier incarnations of these sorts of boats presented to the market in the ‘90s. It does mean, aesthetically at least, that these sorts of boats move away further from brands like X-Yachts and Dufour. In turn that separation means greater market choice, and than can never be a bad thing.

Yet to be clear, we are not talking about being hugely radical. These craft are not about going over 15 knots, where everything is too wet, and certainly too uncomfortable. In the case of the Beneteau Oceanis 51.1 at least, it is about the speedy progress from A to B, with ease of use and overall comfort firmly in mind.

Once at the anchorage, it is about maximising the new world of cruising that is far less about heading to windward for days on end, and much more about enjoying the time at anchor. After all, in these fast paced days that is exactly what owners are wishing to do. Maximise the right time. As a part of all of that, you then have the aspect of how the boat rides at anchor, and with all bays being busier than ever, this too becomes crucial, and once again, hull form has a huge part to play.

In all, this new era represents the very essence of the new world, the new market, the new cruiser, and that can never be a bad thing, for the times change, and going back now seems more and more unlikely as the time marches inexorably on.

Fish and coral at Ellison Reef on Queensland's Great Barrier Reef.  Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS)

Today you will find that we have tales for you about Old Ironsides, Jon Sanders, ARC, England and Scotland, Antigua, Whales, recovery in the Caribbean, Tahiti does look nice, so too Fiji, Oliver Hazard Perry, CZone, Columbus, Antartica, and Kristen Anderson gives us a very personal look at getting there, turtles, Clippers in the Whitsundays, enjoying Pittwater with Multihull Solutions, The Great Barrier Reef, and shipping containers, as well as much more.

So you see, there are tales, lessons, inspirations and history to regale yourself with. Please do savour... We're really enjoying bringing you the best stories from all over the globe. Remember too, if you want to see what is happening in the other Hemisphere, go to the top and the drag down menu, select the other half of the globe and, voila, it's all there for you.

Now then, are you out there plying the seas and got something to say? We'd love to hear from you via please email us

In the meantime, do you love being on the ocean? Well remember to love them back too. They need our help. Now more than ever! Until next time...

John Curnow

Sailors for Sea and David Rockefeller get America and the Sea Award
Sailors for the Sea,
The America and the Sea Award recognizes an individual or organization whose contributions to the history, arts, business or sciences of the sea best exemplify the American spirit and character. Presented annually by Mystic Seaport, the award honors and celebrates those who embrace the scholarship, exploration, adventure, aesthetics, competition, and freedom that the sea inspires.... [more]

Predictwind announces major app updates for Mac, PC, iOS and Android
Nick Olson,
The PredictWind Offshore App now operates on four platforms, Mac, PC, iOS and Android. All of these platforms have had major updates with the Windows 10 version being fully rebuilt from the ‘ground up' as a Microsoft certified ‘Windows Universal App'. Another new App is the long awaited Android version of the Offshore App.... [more]

Thirtieth blog from Jon Sanders - musings from Gold Coast to Sydney
Jon Sanders,
Queensland's Southport Yacht Club is located inside the Seaway, waterways of the Gold Coast. The Seaway runs parallel to the ocean beach, its construction helped to make the Gold Coast what it is today. Big towers and lots of people in them, expensive, I suspect, looking down at the yacht club and its marina.... [more]

32nd Atlantic Rally for Cruisers prepares to set sail
World Cruising Club,
The bustling city of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria is set to welcome the 32nd edition for the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC) this November. Over 1600 sailors from all over the world congregate in the port city to begin preparations for their transatlantic voyage to the Caribbean shores of Saint Lucia.... [more]

Predictwind - Updates released for new offshore app
Predictwind's Offshore App is constantly being updated to provide you with the best possible forecast experience and the latest tools and features. Here's a look at the latest release.... [more]

World ARC 2017-18 into the Indian Ocean
World Cruising,
The World ARC fleet departed the Cocos (Keeling) Islands this morning, embarking on the second longest sail of their circumnavigation; a 2350 nautical miles journey to Mauritius. The fleet have had a very enjoyable time in this idyllic and unspoiled anchorage... [more]

Castle coast Scotland and England
SV Taipan,
Oh for the open sea again! Having negotiated the final lock, Taipan relishes a fresh dose of salt water under the keel after a couple of weeks in the fresh water of the wonderful Caledonian Canal. Leaving Inverness down The Moray Firth involves a bit of convoluted navigation around shoals for approximately 10 miles.... [more]

Antigua Marinas, Marine Services and related business ready for season
The pressure is on for Antigua to lead the charge for the region and ensure that all visiting yachts understand that not only Antigua but the region, is very much open for business and ready to deliver outstanding and unique Caribbean experiences, albeit with the option of changed itineraries for some in the short term.... [more]

48 hour flash sale, don't miss out on this
Ross and Whitcroft,
Functional and sportive two-layer jacket with tuck away hood in collar, elastic hem with elastic tape inside, chest and waist pocket with YKK Aquaguard® zipper.... [more]

USCG protects Old Ironsides during turnaround voyage in Boston Harbor
U.S. Coast Guard 1st District Northeast,
Coast Guard Station Boston law enforcement teams provide security for the USS Constitution, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017 as it sails in Boston Harbor. The USS Constitution originally launched in 1797 and is the oldest commissioned warship afloat in the world.... [more]

Scientists eavesdrop on beaked whales to learn how deep they dive
NOAA Fisheries,
The findings by NOAA scientists from the Northeast Fisheries Science Center (NEFSC) in Woods Hole, Mass. and a colleague now at Hydroacoustics Inc in Rochester, NY were recently reported in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America.... [more]

Interagency teamwork saves stranded beluga calf
NOAA Fisheries,
As they circled the area, Meisenheimer and pilot Kenneth Reiser looked for other belugas and confirmed that the calf appeared to be abandoned. After setting down the chopper, they called the sighting in to the NOAA Fisheries Protected Resources Division (PRD).... [more]

The Recovery Process – Caribbean tourism, island by island
Stephanie Rosenbloom,
SO Dominica, Barbuda, St. Martin, The BVI, USVI and Puerto Rico were devastated but how are these islands and the area in general now? It looks like it could be a big season in the Caribbean, and whilst the article below deals with travel per se, it certainly has notes for cruisers too.... [more]

Be prepared, travel with Musto
Pack right. Resilient fabrics. Highly protective constructions. And contemporary style that takes you from the sea to the streets.... [more]

Ship's captain fined after vessel grounds at Rathlin Island
Maritime and Coastguard Agency,
He was charged under the Merchant Shipping Distress Signals and Prevention of Collision Regulations 1996 and also of failing to safely navigate his ship and causing serious damage to the ship (in breach of section 58 of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995).... [more]

Bora Bora to Raiatea
Andrew and Clare / Freedom and Adventure,
We spent two weeks on the SE corner of Bora Bora in the company of good friends Martin and Ellen on Acapella. We had a fun time snorkelling, walking the beach, sharing Happy Hour, meals and many laughs. The weather was warm and sunny but very windy. Perfect conditions for our friends on Pangea and Shindig who are keen Kite Boarders.... [more]

Take the leap - Life as an Ocean Gypsy - Part 2- Patagonia
Kristen Anderson,
The beginning of any adventure is often fraught with chaos and mine was no exception. Once it was apparent that throwing in my job and heading to Chile to board Commitment for her four-month journey through the Patagonian channels and across the Pacific was not a dream, I confess to a few moments of panic.... [more]

View all our cruising news at

You can
unsubscribe from any or all of our newsletters here

If you are having difficulty with the above link, please copy and paste the link below into your browser is operated by YY Online Services Ltd. registered in England no. 7895890
The George Business Centre, Christchurch Road, New Milton, BH25 6QJ, UK

GJW Direct - Yacht 2019 - FooterYalikavak Marina 30% off FooterNorth Sails 2019 - NSVictoryList - Footer