Brian Hancock

Them versus US(A)

7 Oct
The Annapolis Boat Show


As I walk the docks at the Annapolis Boat Show I am struck by how different sailing in the US is from sailing in other parts of the world. Add to that the news that there will be an American challenge for the next America’s Cup through the New York Yacht Club and it all starts to make sense. Sailing, or shall is say Yaaahting, has always been viewed as an elitist sport and for good reason. Blue bloods in blue blazers have dominated the America’s Cup which is the most high profile sailing event recognized
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Shake-up at the Volvo Ocean Race

26 Sep


There has been a big shake-up at the Volvo Ocean Race and it comes less than a month before the next race is scheduled to start from Alicante, the port city on Spain’s Mediterranean coast. The big news is that Mark Turner is stepping down from his role as CEO. It’s not clear whether Mark is jumping or was pushed but my guess is that he found it difficult to work within the constraints of a huge organization where there are so many stakeholders each with their own agenda. Mark is used to having pretty much sole autonomy over things
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Mini Innovations

20 Sep
The Mini 6.50 Eight Cube

There has not been any other sailboat class that has sparked as much innovation as Classe Mini, the class association behind the Mini 6.50 sailboats. These tiny yachts are on the cutting edge of sailboat design and have been since the class was first introduced in 1977. Take for example the Mini Eight Cube which will be skippered by the Swiss sailor Simon Koster in the upcoming Mini Transat which starts on October 1. Koster was one of the first to go with the blunt scow-like bow rather than a conventional bow and the boat
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The Russians are Coming

14 Sep


I was a tad bummed to see this pic on my Facebook feed this morning. The red and white boat washed up there after Hurricane Irma was my ride for the 89/90 Whitbread Round the World Race. It’s called Fazisi and was the Soviet Union’s first, and by happenstance, last entry in the Whitbread. When the race started the boat had a large Hammer and Sickle flag flying off the transom; by the time the race was over the Soviet Union had pretty much disintegrated.  I formed a partnership with the boat’s designer and we chartered Fazisi for $1 ...
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Hurricane Lili

8 Sep
With so much hurricane activity swirling around, and so much destruction, I thought that I would recount my own encounter with a hurricane, at sea, on Christmas Day, 1984. Hurricane Lili was the third hurricane ever recorded in the North Atlantic in December and it came our way as a unique and somewhat bizarre Christmas gift.

I had been hired to train a Finnish crew who were planning to compete in the 1985/86 Whitbread Round the World Race. The boat was Fazer Finland, Fazer being a high end chocolate maker and one of Finlands most treasured brands. Part
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Royal sightings

31 Aug
TBT – me aboard Drum 85/86 Whitbread
It has been 20 years today (31st August, 2017) since Princess Diana died. Hard to believe. Where does the time go? Well as you have probably guessed I have a story about the late (and lovely) princess. Since it’s a short story I will add one about another princess; Fergie.

I raced the 1985/86 Whitbread Round the World Race aboard the British yacht Drum. For that race HRH Prince Phillip was the patron and somehow he managed to talk Diana into handing out the prizes at the final prize giving in London. You
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Royal sightings

31 Aug
TBT – me aboard Drum 85/86 Whitbread
It has been 20 years today (31st August, 2017) since Princess Diana died. Hard to believe. Where does the time go? Well as you have probably guessed I have a story about the late (and lovely) princess. Since it’s a short story I will add one about another princess; Fergie.

I raced the 1985/86 Whitbread Round the World Race aboard the British yacht Drum. For that race HRH Prince Phillip was the patron and somehow he managed to talk Diana into handing out the prizes at the final prize giving in London. You
...
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Fair dinkum or not? You decide.

18 Aug
This picture has no relevance to the blog – I just like it and wanted to share it

I am always interested to know people think of my opinions and the information that I share in my Great Circle Sails blog. Actually, for a while there I was wondering if anyone even reads my blog but lately I have been getting some fan mail so some people are enjoying my point of view. Not so much a person that goes by the name Anarchist David. Most of my blog pieces are published on Sailing Anarchy which is by far the ...
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Fair dinkum or not? You decide.

18 Aug
This picture has no relevance to the blog – I just like it and wanted to share it

I am always interested to know people think of my opinions and the information that I share in my Great Circle Sails blog. Actually, for a while there I was wondering if anyone even reads my blog but lately I have been getting some fan mail so some people are enjoying my point of view. Not so much a person that goes by the name Anarchist David. Most of my blog pieces are published on Sailing Anarchy which is by far the ...
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More sailing news

11 Aug


So this is one of my pet peeves and I debated whether I should use this forum to air it, but what the heck there is not much going on in the sailing world this week (joke). A couple of days ago I got a press release from the Volvo Ocean Race.  All of us in the media are prone to overuse superlatives and I am usually fine with it, indeed I am probably more guilty than most, but this I am not fine with. Here is the headline. “New Zealand sailing hero Peter Burling joins Team Brunel for Volvo
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