Two ways to Smolyan; OPC; Turbo

Daily newslog. Last updated 19:40

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No major disruption on the Channel, especially after LD Lines Dieppe-Newhaven got back on track. Torrential rain in central Europe, particularly east France, is the biggest issue tonight.

We round up Rhodope roadtrip in southern Bulgaria, and the other news from the day. Nothing major, apart from a worrying row about Greece/Turkey ferries. Oh, and we get a first look at everybody’s favourite Turbo:

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The new Porsche 911 Turbo revealed today: 520bhp, 140kg of downforce, 3° degree rear steer, 16% reduced emissions and 60 LEDs in the lights. The Turbo S has 560bhp.

The new Porsche 911 Turbo revealed today: 520bhp, 140kg of downforce, 3° degree rear steer, 16% reduced emissions and 60 LEDs in the lights. The Turbo S has 560bhp.

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TRAVEL/WEATHER:

Today’s LD Lines/ Transmanche sailings Dieppe-Newhaven-Dieppe from 18:00 (returning at 23:00) have been confirmed. The company also says (bad translation..), ‘We inform all passengers that due to à Fleamarket, the town center of Dieppe will not be autorise for all vehicle the 04 and 05 May 2013’.

No other Channel operators currently reporting any problems.

Amber – severe – weather warning for torrential rain in eastern France (moving towards north east France), south east Germany and east Austria; storms in east Hungary and southern Serbia, and high temperatures in northern Montenegro.

French authorities have now issued flood alerts for eastern France.

Europe Weather: ‘Thundery showers in south and central Europe, rain in the north.’

Dover Port this morning: ‘The ferry terminal is operating normally, sea conditions are slight, with a NW breeze, force 3 and the visibility is good’.

English Channel weekend weather from Condor Ferries: ‘The current forecast indicates slight sea conditions over the bank holiday weekend.’

This evening’s P&O Hull-Zeebrugge leaves an hour earlier than usual – now 17:30 – due to tidal restrictions.

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NOTES:

Jersey‘Condor Express will be escorted into Jersey today at 12:00 by Royal Naval vessels and helicopter in the run up to Jersey Boat Show! Jersey Boat show is taking place between the 4th and 6th May. Please allow extra time when travelling to Jersey port.’

Portsmouth – the A34 northbound will be closed between the junctions with the A303 & the A343, from 10pm – 6am between 29 April – 3 May (via @BrittanyFerries).

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NEWS & PHOTOS:

Two ways to Smolyan

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Extra picture from yesterday’s ‘Rhodope Roadtrip’ titled, ‘More than one way to Smolyan’ from Jon O’Shaughnessy, @HMCinBulgaria. FYI: they went via Pamporovo on the way down, and the other way on the way back. Mr O’Shaughnessy was tight lipped about exactly why he was in this beautiful part of southern Bulgaria, the Rhodope Mountains – other than ‘providing consular assistance in every corner of Bulgaria’ – but he did tweet a link yesterday to the UK Embassy’s advice pages on buying property in Bulgaria. ‘Looks idyllic,’ he said, ‘but problems for British investors.’ To see where this picture was taken on the map click here.

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London-Lisboa Rally successfully completed – no internet connection for the full results but the Baker boys won in their 911, second was Colton and Woodcock also in a 911 while in third place were Gerber and Kung in an Austin Healey Mk1.

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Gazprom’s Nis Petrol in Romania expansion

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Serb oil company Nis Petrol is moving further into the Romanian fuel retail market having opened its first filling station last December. Majority owned by Russian giant Gazprom – the rest is Serb state-owned – two more stations will open on the Bucharest-Pitesti highway in July with another 45 due to open this year. Nis Petrol will be Gazprom’s retail brand in the Balkans. Existing competitors include Lukoil, Petrom, OMV, Agip and MOL. Nis Petrol already runs 500 stations in Serbia and Bosnia. Read this recent interview with the Nis Petrol CEO.

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Greece/ Turkey – a row has highlighted the delicate balance in travel between Greece and Turkey. The two countries share a land border in the north, which is open, but the only way to sail from the Greek mainland to Turkey is on two separate boats changing at Rhodes. The final leg to Marmaris takes one hour and costs around €110 per car, plus about €45 for each passenger. The Turks have taken offence after one of their captains was refused entry to Rhodes port. One to watch.

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Italy – car insurance has dropped by nearly five percent over the last six months according to a survey.

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Controversial live animal exports are to resume from Dover. Read the Farmers Guardian sober appraisal here.

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More revelations to come about the demise of TransEuropa Ferries last week, particularly concerning its complex ownership/ management structure, says This is Kent. DFDS says it is already benefiting from TE’s bankruptcy as Dunkirk is now the closest port to the Belgian border, at 30 miles. The only ferry to Belgium from the UK is now P&O Hull-Zeebrugge.

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Buyers are lining up for Scandlines, the Baltic operator, according to reports. Currently part-owned by UK private equity firm 3i. The offers come despite the upcoming Fehmarn Belt railway tunnel, due 2021, which will literally undermine the company’s business between Denmark and Germany.

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OPC, Official Porsche Cake

To celebrate the 911's fiftieth anniversary

Official Porsche Cake, to celebrate the 911’s fiftieth anniversary. Wonder how they get their icing so shiny.

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