Top news stories of 2011
by Malcolm MacLean
In the fourth and final part of our review of the year, we look back at the stories that made waves in 2011.
It has been our biggest year yet in term of news. We have published more than 2,000 stories on this site in the last twelve months, many of them scoops. And that's just what we've been allowed to publish - as is the nature of our industry, there are all sorts of stories that hit our radar but we're sworn to secrecy.
We'll be putting together all the numbers in a separate report in January, but in the meantime here is a run down of the top 10 most read stories on the site in 2011.
- First photos of project Topaz (May 9th)
Such is the secrecy that surrounds activity at Lürssen that when we do report something it tends to attract a lot of attention. And so it is that the most read story on the site in 2011 was the world's first look at Project Topaz. We reported her length as 147m, but we're hearing rumours that she may be even larger than that.
- Fabrice Vial murdered (August 12th)
Whilst the vast majority of stories we publish are about yachts, the murder of Fabrice Vial, owner of CNC (formerly Couach Yachts), whilst holidaying on his yacht in Corsica in August made the headlines for all the wrong reasons. There is still no word on who did it and why.
- Valerie launched (March 25th)
The third most read story on the site also involved a Lürssen yacht, this time the launch of the 84m Valerie. Even though the story dates back to March, we still don't know much about her other than what she looks like and some of those involved in the project.
- Hemisphere delivered (August 18th)
Our first sight of Hemisphere, the world's largest sailing catamaran, cruising the Cote D'Azur in August following her delivery by Pendennis was something to behold, and she stole the show at Monaco a month later. You can read more about Hemisphere in our online feature. The full feature appeared in the November 2011 issue of Boat International.
- Serene delivered (August 8th)
In fifth place on our list is the news about the biggest yacht delivered in 2011, Fincantieri's Serene. At 134m she is the largest yacht ever built by an Italian yard. We were lucky enough to get exclusive access to her for an article that appeared in the [December issue of Boat International](