Cabo Horn 35 MKII
Cabo Horns 35 boats join in an ocean
The Cabo Horn 35 class, one of the most successful designs in
our office's career, after more than twenty years of existence keeps
brimming over with alacrity. This September three of these boats will
participate on the traditional three-hundred miles Recife to Fernando
de Noronha Island Ocean Race. They are Stella Maris, owned
by Roberto Kivitis Nogueira, from Alagoas, Brazil, Marcelo
Balbo's Thalassa, from Ilha Bela, State of Sao Paulo,
Brazil, and the most famous member of the class, the legendary Utopia, now belonging to Manrico D'Alessandro, from Florianopolis, State
of Santa Catarina, Brazil.
To crown the participation of boats from our design in this magic race
to one of the most beautiful ocean islands in the South Atlantic, this
year we will have no less than sixteen yachts in the competition, some
of them authentic icons in the yachting regional scene, as is the case
of Utopia (see in Cabo Horn 35 home page –
club - “Marco Cianfflone's Utopia round the
world trip”), and Amyr Klink's laureate fifty-foot polar
yacht Paratti II, the first boat to sail single-handed
non-stop around Antarctica, and to winter alone in that frozen continent,
for those achievements being awarded the coveted Royal Cruising Club
of England “Tillman's Prize”, besides being commended with
a Brazilian Mail stamp. “Paratii Between Two Poles” and
“The Endless Sea”, the books he wrote relating those feats,
were best-sellers published in various languages, having sold more than
one million copies worldwide. We are still going to report about Paratii
II and the other yachts from our design taking part in the race,
but for the time being the three home-built Cabo Horns 35 are the boats we would like to praise in this article.
Paratii II will be competing in the 2010 Recife
to Fernando de Noronha Race.
Many clients of ours tell us they nurture long time dreams of taking
part in the Recife to Fernando de Noronha Race, perhaps this being the
reason for the steady increase, year after year, in the number of our
boats in the competition. Since the island is a national park with a
fragile ecosystem, the maximum number of participants is limited to
one-hundred sixty yachts from any nationality. So, having 10% of the
fleet representing boats from our office is quite an impressive number.
Cabo Horn 35 interior layout. The most “off-road”
of our cruising designs
The race being an event where what counts most is to be there, wining
in each class simply represents an extra bonus. It becomes evident in
the minds of participants that boats specifically designed for cruising
offshore have a clear edge over “off-the-shelf” production
yachts, which are mainly intended for club racing and weekend short-distance
sailing. It is frequently commented in the verandahs that taking part
in the Recife to Fernando de Noronha Race is a life-time accomplishment
for production yacht owners, while it is a not to be missed annual event
for those who own a proper offshore cruising boat. The race attractions
are many, beginning with the warm welcome typical of the Brazilian way
of life from the part of Cabanga Yacht Club, the sponsoring club, when
a fortnight preceding the race there are live shows to be seen or parties
to be enjoyed up to late evenings. The arrival in the lush and green
paradise of Fernando de Noronha, where crews have at their disposal
heaps of different social events and diving attractions to highlight
their stay, having the prize-awarding party as the grand finale, is
no less enjoyable.
Fernando de Noronha, being a national park,
is yet unspoiled by heavy tourism
Most probably this is the prevailing factor for the captains of our
line of authentic cruising sailboats wanting to be there
year after year. In this case owners find their boats the most
adapted to live aboard and to endure the long round trip to reach Recife,
added by the twice 300 miles run to reach the island and be back to
the continent. Aboard a Cabo Horn 35 you don't need to get stressed
when you are on watch. With its pilot house boasting internal steering
and excellent visibility 360° around, you can be on watch seating
in the pilot chair, having only to stand up to reach the fridge for
an ice-cold beer
The racing fleet stays anchored in
the leeward side of the island close to the yacht harbour. This belvedere
is one of the many the island has to offer to its visitors
The competitors of the class in this year's event have in common their
construction sagas. The three of them are amateur constructions accomplished
with a very high level of workmanship, resulting in outstanding yachts.
Being three boats from the same stock-plan, their owners might apply
to obtain from the racing committee the status of class with exclusive
prizes for them. At least this had been the rule in previous races.
Stella Maris is a home-built Cabo Horn
35, constructed by her owner, Roberto Kivitis Nogueira, in Maceió,
State of Alagoas, Northeast Brazil
Stella Maris was built by her owner, Roberto Kivitis
Nogueira, in a shed belonging to him, in Maceió, Alagoas. Roberto,
had never built a boat before, never mentioning a fixed keel offshore
yacht intended for a round the world trip.
As a start point in Roberto's intentions is an Atlantic crossing by
the roaring forties from Maceió, his home-town to Cape Town in
South Africa (see the article about Stella Maris in the Cabo Horn 35 home page published by “The Alagoan Gazette:
Roberto Nogueira builds a Cape Horn 35 for a round the world trip),
being left to the long run the so cherished circumnavigation. Meanwhile,
while his professional activities as a civil engineer don't allow him
the spare time for staying out for so long, he is being satisfied with
his annual cruising schedule along the Brazilian coast, culminating
with the entry in the Recife to Fernando de Noronha race. The boat is
unquestionably very well prepared for any challenge in an ocean passage,
and if the intended overseas voyage didn't happen yet, at least his
boat has already an impressive number of miles sailed since her launching
in 2004. In one of the races to Fernando de Noronha our office had obtained
the record of participants of boats from our design, and Stella
Maris was one of them.
Roberto Kivitis Nogueira (with white
cap) receiving from Roberto Barros the commemorative plaque for
being one of the twelve skippers of boats designed by the office
on that race. With the studio change of address to Perth, Western Australia,
unfortunately this year the new record can't be commemorated as deserved
To toast the achievement B & G Yacht Design, then Roberto Barros
Yacht Design, offered a lunch party at the town of Recife for all crewmembers
of our fleet, when was offered to each of the twelve captains a commemorative
plaque of the event, Roberto Kivitis Nogueira being one of the skippers
honoured. This season the new record can not be commemorated accordingly,
since there will be no representative of the office in Recife, but what
really counts is the fact that Stella Maris is in Bristol
shape, ready for accomplishing any new challenge.
Thalassa is a Cabo Horn 35 extremelly
well built by two totally inexperienced amateurs, Álvaro Brant
de Carvalho and his father, João Brant de Carvalho, in the workshop
of their farm in the interior of the State of Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Thalassa is a good example of boats belonging to the Cabo Horn 35 class. She is so well built and well finished
that “Revista Náutica”, the most important Brazilian
yacht magazine, just published an article about her. Marcelo Balbo,
the new owner, is so much infatuated with his boat that he made a site/blog
just to tell in detail every step about her wanderings (see in our links
page – Cabo Horn 35 Thalassa).
Thalassa's saloon matches the coziness of varnished
wood with white upholstery
We are going to follow his blog with special interest, since it is
expected from any Cabo Horn 35owner to get itchy feet as he discovers
the pleasures of sailing offshore aboard one of these boats.
Utopia is the best known Cabo Horn
35. In her currículum is included a round the world trip and
the fact that she survived a fierce hurricane in Saint Martin and a
devastating tsunami in Pucket, Thailand.
What is flying around about the Cabo Horn Utopia is that
she is the boat with seven lives. Her full story is a thrilling book
of stunning adventures. She was built by Fausto Pignaton, an amateur
who made his living making surfboards in a workshop in Guarapari, a
small town in the Brazilian east shore. Soon after being launched her
owner departed bound for the West Indies, even though he had no previous
experience in sailing offshore. Since he was sailing in a very limited
budget, he had to do some charter work to be able to keep the cost of
his trip under control. After spending a whole season successfully sailing
among the Windward Islands, with the approach of the hurricane season
he picked the lagoon inside the island of Saint Martin as the haven
where he would stay. It happens that, in spite of that island having
been spared of any major tropical cyclones in previous years, that time
it was hit by the fiercest hurricane ever, the infamous Louis. In a
fleet of more than nine hundred yachts, eighty survived, even though
no one unscathed, being his boat one of the less affected. What made
the difference was Fausto's courage, refusing to leave his boat, going
against a warning issued by the authorities for crews not staying aboard.
When he saw a catamaran flying upside-down not far from Utopia's mast top, in seeing a huge steel yacht coming adrift in his
boat direction, he let the anchor rod go and from then on assisted the
boat to go aground in a mangrove patch. This measure saved his boat
and probably his life too. To perform the maneuver he left the relatively
comfortable shelter of the pilot-house wearing a pair of shorts, but
had to recede, since the shorts' cloth inflated like a balloon, obliging
him to quickly undress, proceeding forwards entirely naked, wielding
a boat-hook in one of his hands, as if he was old Neptune himself, emerging
from the deep.
When the hurricane abated, Fausto had only minor scratches to fix in
his boat, mainly the tip of the rudder. In two weeks the boat was ship-shape,
ready for the intended return trip to Brazil.
This he had done single-handed, sailing non-stop from Saint-Martin
to Fernando de Noronha, most of the time close-hauled, making the whole
passage in twenty-one days. Back in his country, Fausto soon became
a celebrity, being invited for T.V. interviews and having his saga being
published by the most important local yachting magazines. His boat became
object of desire, and in a blink it fell in the hands of another owner,
the helicopter pilot Marco Cianflonne.
Marco, an adventurer by heart, wanted this Cabo Horn 35 to accomplish
a round the world trip single handed, and this was what he managed to
do in great style. If a cat has seven lives, we don't know to say how
many this fantastic boat has. During his round the world voyage, Marco
hit a rock at full speed in Indonesia, was caught in the terrible tsunami
that devastated Thailand, had been attacked by whales in the South Atlantic
and arrived in his country unscathed. The report about this trip you
can read in the Cabo Horn 35 home-page, CLUB, an extract from
an article he wrote for an important magazine. In 2010 Utopia is as good as new, even though she can still show the signs of the mishaps
she had endured. Now, in the hands of a third owner, Manrico D'Alessandro,
she is ready for taking part in the Recife to Fernando de Noronha, 2010
edition and beyond.
Utopia anchored in the lagoon
of a South Pacific island.
MARCO CIANFFLONE ROUND THE WORLD VOYAGE ABOARD UTOPIA
Marco Paulo Cianfflone is back after three years, nine months and seven
days of pure adventure. His story of sailing round the world tells about
tsunamis, whale attacks, dangerous crossings, and, principally about the
renewal of spirituality in his solo trip.
When a teenager he lived in São Paulo, a megalopolis one hundred
kilometres away from the sea. At that time he dreamed above all else
in becoming a professional surfer. He spent six months surfing in Australia,
but didn't count on stretching so much, and when reaching 1.89m in height,
he discovered that he would rather choose another sport than sticking
to the original plans.
He returned to Brazil and graduated as a helicopter pilot, working in
offshore oil rig commuter services.
He flew professionally for thirteen years in a row. By then he had the
chance to get accustomed to the various humours the weather can provide,
from flat calms to fierce storms
This nearness to nature, plus his knowledge of navigation, gave him
a new dream: to sail around the world.
He prepared himself for the trip during the next seven years; the first
step was to choose a sailing boat. After an extensive search in the
market, he bought a Cape Horn 35', designed by Roberto Barros Yacht
Design. The boat was bought in Bracuhy, a marina placed in one of the
most beautiful Brazilian cruising grounds. His acquisition came with
a good reference: she survived one of the most devastating hurricanes
ever; Louis, which in the summer of 1995 swept the Island of Saint Martin,
and brought complete destruction to more than 800 boats stationed there.
Marco fell in love with the boat at first sight and decided this Cape
Horn 35 would be his.
He dedicated special attention to items regarding safety, like installing
radar, epirb, single side band radio and life raft. He then applied
for a captain's licence, and after one year sailing along the Brazilian
coast, decided that he was already acquainted enough with this new life-style,
feeling sufficiently prepared to leave.
As his working scheme was 15 days on, 15 days off, in the beginning
he could proceed with his trip without quitting his job. He would leave
his boat in a marina, and then come back two weeks later by plane to
resume his trip.
In November of 2001 he gave up his job definitively and left to travel
the world. "The most difficult part is severing the ties with land,"
Apart from the sea, the weather and a profound feeling of loneliness,
Marco had to put up with another challenge: lack of money. Arriving
in Brisbane, Australia, he found a job as a brick man, and stayed there
for a year and a half.
"During those months he became an urbanite". From this experience
he carries a "trophy": boots covered in cement. They are my
"sandals of humbleness".
Marco remained ashore during two hurricane seasons in the South Pacific,
which happens from November to April, since during this time no one
sails in this region. So, in May of 2004, he left for Papua New Guinea,
where there awaited him an exceptional experience, an initiation of
the Pai Pai tribe, on the Island of Mioko.
"This is a country totally unspoiled by the influences of our technocratic
world. There is no tourism; their inhabitants live a very simple existence,
consisting of fishing and working on subsistence agriculture. Visiting
those islands was one of the highlights of the trip, a privilege only
a few westerners had the chance to share.
This region is known for the high incidence of Malaria, and he wasn't
spared. Soon he contracted the disease, suffering successive crisis
of this fever. He self-medicated himself at sea with the medicines he
carried for this eventuality, managing to survive the illness until
reaching next port.
"I was very impressed by the friendliness of the sailing community.
This solidarity never failed, but I was always ready to assist others
as well, every time I saw someone in need", reported Marco.
On the 27th of December 2004, destiny and the winds placed Utopia in
the area where there occurred one of the biggest natural disasters of
He recorded this traumatic event in his logbook with dramatic words:
"It was 09:30; Utopia had been anchored for five days in Kata Beach,
Koh Phuket, Thailand. I was sewing a flag, when the depth sounder alarm
was triggered. I left the cabin and saw yachts gyrating in all directions.
The skippers looked at each other without understanding the reason for
this. I only began to understand what the trouble was when I looked
at rock cliffs nearby and saw a flux of water invading the bay with
an indescribable force. I looked towards the beach, and saw people running
to protect themselves behind the hotel walls. The scene was dantesque!
The sea was swallowing up the beach. The penny dropped, it was a seismic
activity. I weighed anchor quickly and motored in the direction of the
open sea with enormous difficulty, for Utopia wasn't managing to beat
the flux of water even with the engine running at 3000 revs. The whole
fleet did the same and no boats were lost in Kata Beach.
All we managed to do was to reach deeper water at about 400 metres from
the beach. Then I was able to witness scenes of horror which I had hoped
never to see in my life. The sea swallowed the beach, rising nearly
six metres in less than 3 minutes. You couldn't see the beach anymore,
and the water reached the palm trees level, next retreating much further
than low tide, to rapidly swallow the beach again and then retreat.
These first two fluxes and refluxes were the most violent ones, and
happened three more times, with decreasing intensity. A reverse wave
returned seawards at each new cycle. When things calmed down a little,
the scenery was desolate, everything you can imagine floating in the
bay: tables, chairs, cupboards, windsurf boards, ice-chests, sun umbrellas,
cushions, bags of bread, coconuts, flippers, diving cylinders, neoprene
I went ashore that same day, and after making contact by internet with
relatives and friends in an internet coffee shop on the other side of
the island, Utopia resumed her trip to India.
"But I was still going to experience a very challenging situation
during the trip. It was when two whales approached the boat, when only
a few hundred miles were missing to complete the circumnavigation, and
one of them assaulted the under-body of the yacht, damaging the propeller
which left the boat without auxiliary propulsion". Marco contacted
the Brazilian Navy, but not receiving in good time the required assistance,
he finished the trip by his own means. "My greatest concern was
not being able to complete my objective when there were only 300 miles
to cover", says Marco.
Everything is history now. On land, Marco Paulo mentioned that when
he took up this trip, he wanted "to find himself". Now he
comments: "if I sit in a circle of cruisers, I will have what to
talk about for fifteen minutes. But if I sit among philosophers, things
would be different".
For him, the spiritual experience is his biggest treasure. "I learned
much from the silence of the sea".
For those who want to sail solo, Marco recommends: "It is necessary
to have absolute detachment. If you leave behind anything that proportions
safety, weakness hits you and you return!"
Roberto Nogueira builds the Cape Horn 35 for a
round the world trip.
Extract from ¨The
Roberto Nogueira , 37 years old, is a sailing enthusiast since he
was a child. At twenty he bought his first boat, a laser, with which
he won many trophies in numerous regattas. He always dreamed of
sailing to distant islands and to learn about their fascinating
Following his Portuguese grandfather steps, he was a traditional
boat builder, he decided to build his own boat, a 35-foot yacht
with comfort and safety for long distance cruising.
Son of a Portuguese father and a Nordic mother, he has the blood
of the great navigators and more than anyone else, a strong spirit
of adventure. Now that his home built boat is close to becoming
a dream come true, he is anticipating the future adventures he is
going to start experimenting.
His yacht has accommodations for up to six persons, and presently
it´s only missing some internal finishing plus the acquisition
of some expensive equipment.
The first international voyage will be a non stop passage from his
home city, Maceio, to Cape Town, South Africa, and back.
His first idea was to explore the Brazilian coast, but for the lack
of infrastructure he has changed his mind. It's a pity that such
a large country with eight thousand kilometres of shoreline to be
so destitute of marinas and other yachting facilities.
To build a boat is a task not to be undertaken lightly. If the boat
is to be built by an amateur -which is his case - the construction
becomes quite a challenge.
When Roberto decided to start the construction, he hadn't realized
that he needed to be a skilled cabinetmaker, a painter, a hardware
maker etc.; He was obliged to use his own resources and do everything
himself. The only thing he bought was the plans for the Cape Horn
35, designed by the Brazilian yacht designer Roberto Barros, Cabinho,
a renowned boat designer in his country.
Roberto opted to provide the Cape Horn 35 with internal steering;
it protects the sailor from excessive cold, heat and humidity.
Using fibreglass-reinforced plastic as the hull material, he first
had to make a plug, and only then started the actual lamination.
The hardships were great. At one point he nearly gave up. Besides
the challenge he was getting involved with, he still had to share
his time between his family's real estate business and building
his dreamboat. Surpassed all difficulties, like having to import
deck fittings, sail cloth and a myriad of other stuff, Roberto started
to like the game and now he is even considering becoming a boat
builder. He would like to build small sail boats and runabouts,
which he believes have a big market in Brazil.
The only thing Roberto doesn't like talking about is costs, He says
that dreams don't have price tags, and he didn't account how much
he spent on his boat. He only mentions that a boat the size of the
Cape Horn 35 with all the modern equipment is worth U$80,000 in
the Brazilian market. He prefers to think of this work more as a
life's project than as a business enterprise.