Scuttlebutt Today
  
  Archived Newsletters »
  Features »
  Photos »

SCUTTLEBUTT No. 1015 - February 26, 2002

Scuttlebutt is a digest of yacht racing news of major significance; commentary, opinions, features and dock talk . . . with a North American emphasis. Corrections, contributions, press releases, constructive criticism and contrasting viewpoints are always welcome, but save your bashing and personal attacks for elsewhere.

TROPHEE JULES VERNE: GERONIMO IN THE DOLDRUMS
With 200 miles still to go to the equator (at 13:00 GMT today), sailing conditions are hardly in Geronimo's favour. The ten or so knots of wind available mean that the Cap Gemini Ernst & Young - Schneider Electric team trimaran is making very slow headway towards the Southern Hemisphere. "Even the weather forecasts are up the spout", said Olivier de Kersauson. "It's therefore very difficult to predict what will happen. This area of heavy, humid, air tends to spread out like water on a table top. Nothing can stop it".

As if the lack of wind wasn't enough, violent storms are no also hindering the progress of the giant grey multihull in her attempt to beat the Trophee Jules Verne record. "It's best not to look at the sky too much if you're of a nervous disposition; we're in a sluggish weather system surrounded by lightning slashing across the horizon. Half the time, we have to run the boat with no electricity at all. Sailing without wind direction, electronics and communication. But then again, we don't want to be struck by lightning and get fried".

www.grandsrecords.com

TRACY EDWARDS BUYS CLUB MED
Tracy Edwards has this morning formally come clean about her plans for making a number of sailing record attempts culminating in Jules Verne Trophy next January. Once again this will be with an all-female crew, continuing Edwards' campaign for equality of the sexes in the world of sailing, that started when she entered the first all-female crew aboard Maiden in the 1989/90 Whitbread Round the World Race and that came to an abrupt halt when her maxi-catamaran Royal & SunAlliance dismasted in the Southern Ocean in March 1998.

To carry out her new program Edwards has purchased Grant Dalton's 110ft catamaran Club Med, winner of The Race and one of the fastest offshore racing boats in the world. However some aspects of her campaign are still to be resolved - a title sponsor is still being sought for £3 million, although negotiations are said to be well advanced. Equally important is that a skipper needs to be appointed as Edwards, now a mother, will stay ashore for this attempt.

Full story on Mad for Sailing: www.madforsailing.com

NEW, NEW, NEW!!!
It is time to start thinking of your new gear for this next sailing season. Camet International has added a new line of Rash Guards, long sleeved, short sleeved and Hawaiian colors. They also have added several new colors in the Sailing shorts. (Navy, and Navy w/ Hawaiian stripe, etc) Check all these out at the Camet web site at www.camet.com

VOLVO OCEAN RACE: SEB ARRIVES IN RIO
Last night at 1700 with darkness beginning to take hold of the Baia da Guanabana, Rio de Janeiro, the container ship BBC Anglia motored into the city's main port carrying Team SEB's dismasted V.O.60.

At 0700 this morning the shore crew were already hard at work on the boat readying it to be lifted out onto the hard later today. "It's going to be about 400 man hours to fix the boat. We've also got a professional boat builder flying in to look over it [the hull structure]. There are lots of chips out of it and you just can't say, 'she'll be right mate' and go out racing with it we need to make sure it's not structurally damaged," said skipper Gurra Krantz.

The new mast arrived here in Rio de Janeiro during the early hours of Saturday morning, however this was no easy task, the 28m carbon spar was transported by road from Sao Paulo after it's flight across from Holland last week. "It was a very tense day. We worked with the police and the customs officials to get the truck through to the marina," said shore manager Scott McAllister.

"I can't imagine how many t-shirts it cost to get the mast through Sao Paulo and on the road to here," said Krantz. "It's been a logistical nightmare to make it all happen. Rerouting a big freight ship from Peru to Chile with our insurance company in London while we were in the Southern Ocean, and at the same time getting the mast from Gothenburg to Holland to Sao Paulo on to here in Rio." One of the biggest problems was finding a truck capable of transporting the mast here in Brazil. "You can't exactly go to the local gas station to hire a trailer to transport the mast along the road."

"It's been quite an expensive operation to be honest, big money," said Krantz, unwilling to go into any detail. -- www.volvooceanrace.org

VOLVO LEUKEMIA CUP SERIES EXPANDS
Volvo Cars of North America, title sponsor of the Volvo Leukemia Cup Regatta, is pleased to announce the expansion of the series from 42 to 45 events, including events in Idaho, Delaware, Kansas, and Pennsylvania. The Volvo Leukemia Cup Regatta series of charity sailing events is the United States' largest charity sailing series. Regattas are held throughout the United States and benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

More than 15,000 people participated in Volvo Leukemia Cup Regatta events in 2001, raising $2.25 million for the fight against leukemia, lymphoma, and other blood-related cancers. Over the past eight years, the series has grown enormously, and has raised more than $7 million.

Former America's Cup winner and Volvo Leukemia Cup Regatta National Chairman Gary Jobson has announced he will again participate in at least 10 of the 45 scheduled 2002 Volvo Leukemia Cup Regatta events taking place throughout the United States this year. He has been a driving force in expanding the Volvo Leukemia Cup Regatta into the United States' largest charity sailing series.

For more information about the Volvo Leukemia Cup Regatta series, please contact Lauri Berkenkamp at Nomad Communications at 802-649-1995 or by email: info@volvoleukemiacup.com.

ACURA SORC EXTENDS REGISTRATION DEADLINE
The Acura SORC has extended its early registration deadline to Friday, March 1. Registrations postmarked or received after March 1 will be subject to a $200 late fee.

In its 61st year, the Acura SORC will be raced off Miami Beach, March 6-10, 2002. The regatta once again features racing on ocean courses with all shore side activities headquartered at the Miami Beach Marina.

With entries expected from, Farr 40, 1D35, J/105, J/80, Mumm 30, and Melges 24 classes, the event will provide a one-design class start to five or more boats of the same class. There will also be racing for handicap classes including IMS and PHRF. News and information about the Acura SORC is available on the regatta web site at www.acurasorc.com. Contact Will Ewing to register at either Tel (203) 352-6353, or email will.ewing@octagon.com

AMERICA'S CUP NEWS
* The third Italian syndicate, IACC-City, has thrown in the towel, after being unable to acquire a boat. Their plans for sailing ITA-48 collapsed in December when Prada decided not to lease them the boat. The syndicate hopes to be a challenger for the 2006 America's Cup. -- www.hauraki-news.com/LatestNews/iacc-city-challenge-LN.htm

* CORM Race Committee Trials: Over four days in early March CORM (the Challenger of Record Management) will organize race committee trials for the Louis Vuitton Cup.

What this means in practical terms is that a race course will be laid on the Hauraki Gulf and starting sequences run in accordance with the proposed Louis Vuitton Cup race instructions, over four days. The main beneficiaries of this operation are returning race committee volunteers from the last Louis Vuitton Cup series held three years ago, as well as new-comers to the large, on-the-water race management team required to mount an event the size of the challenger series. -- www.lvcup.com

To add authenticity to the exercise CORM has asked the challengers currently present in Auckland to participate and organize themselves to unofficially race each other. So far five of the six challenger syndicates currently sailing in Auckland have indicated that they intend to participate. These syndicates are Sweden's Victory Challenge, Britain's GBR Challenge, Switzerland's Alinghi Challenge, America's OneWorld Challenge and Italy's Prada Challenge. -- www.lvcup.com/default.asp?m=displayarticle&id=4389

* GBR Challenge has announced a partnership with Ampetronic Ltd to create an advanced crew communication system, based on the company's Induction Loop Technology, which allows for intelligible wireless communication in the presence of high ambient noise. A maximum of three crew members will wear a microphone with the majority of the crew listening in. About two thirds of the crew need to wear an ear piece which will enable them to carry out their jobs without having to constantly look out for hand signals, ensuring immediate communication and potentially saving vital seconds. -- www.gbrchallenge.com

LETTERS TO THE CURMUDGEON (dmccreary@boats.com)
(Letters selected for publication must include the writer's name and may be edited for clarity or space - 250 words max. This is not a chat room or a bulletin board - you only get one letter per subject, so give it your best shot and don't whine if others disagree.)

* From Dan Alpern: Congratulations again to Alex Bernal/Ted White, Santa Barbara for their win in the 29er class as mentioned in 'Butt #1014. These guys are both class acts that we will all be hearing and reading about much more as their sailing careers continue. Keep up the good work guys - Santa Barbara is proud of you!

* From Marc Gentilin: Now that the 4th leg of the Volvo is over, I have a question concerning ice finding techniques in the southern Ocean. The boats all have powerful RADAR on board to find those Burgs big enough, but can't find the small ones and growlers. Is there any logistical reason why they shouldn't, or couldn't mount a powerful forward facing SONAR on the keel bulb?

* From Manfred C. Schreiber: Winter Games and Ice Boating? - Just back from the DN Worlds in Estonia I read this comment. The DN class was considered to give a "show" in Salt Lake City. A proposal by the class had been given. Hot discussions within the class took place. I do not know the full reason why it faltered at the end but one of the reasons is the unpredictable nature of this sport.

Our World Championship 2002 was to be held in Poland but we ended up in Estonia as the ice had melted away. Snow could cause the same problems. I think it is impossible to move an Olympic Sports event as conditions change. We, the DN sailors are prepared and this year I think also our American friends enjoyed visiting the "home of iceboating" in Haapsalu, Estonia. Ron Sherry, US-44 won the WC 2002 title on Friday 22nd and I hope that all participants are back on their desks in good shape by now.

* From Peter Harken (edited to our 250 word limit): ISAF did study the question of trying to get ice boating in the winter games a few years ago. An iceboating regatta requires a degree of "flexibility" that few other sports would put up with. By that I mean the IOC would have to be flexible in the place for the venue, i.e. you aim it for a certain frozen lake or body of hard water, but weather conditions can blow it out. A 3-5 inch snowfall will kill it. Using a zamboni to clear off a square mile area of snow may be possible but where do you put it? The height of the snow ridges surrounding the course would be high enough to block the wind.

Timing is the other equation in "flexibility" that the IOC would have to concede. Iceboat championships are aimed for a certain place and date. Hah, what a joke! You go, you arrive, and it gets blown out or maybe one or two races, then canceled, pack up, drive another 100, 300, 500 miles to another lake, start over, maybe, and so on and on. We've gone from week to week to week trying to get a championship in. The games are in a two week period in a certain area, period! If that is not flexible then our sport would be really tough to pull off with a very high degree of failure, not good! It's the best sport in the world, we just get very little of it compared to any other.

NEW PERFORMANCE LAMINATES FOR GRAND PRIX RACE BOATS
Bainbridge International has recently combined there renowned 'off shore' (OS) scrim and a grey pigmented adhesive system into a range of inshore racing laminates that provide improved shape retention, greater strength and longer life. The OS DIAX has proved to be very versatile and this development will allow the inshore sailor to benefit from the increased performance that is offered by this range of laminates. For more information contact your sailmaker or go to www.sailcloth.com

APPEALS FORUM IN COLORADO SPRINGS
The US Sailing Appeals Committee will hold an Appeals Forum during the US SAILING spring meetings in Colorado Springs. The Forum will be from 1:00 to 3:30 pm on Saturday, March 16. This Forum is designed to be helpful to members of association appeals committees, to judges, and to others who serve on protest committees. This is an open meeting and there is no fee to participate; anyone who is interested is welcome to attend.

Participants are encouraged to bring questions about the appeals process, which will be addressed at the Forum. Questions may be submitted in advance to Lacey Howe at LaceyHowe@ussailing.org

ICEBOATING WORLDS
Top ten final results, A Fleet:
1. Ron Sherry, 15 points; 2. Karol Jabonski, 18; 3. Michal Burczynski, 18; 4. Thomas Lindgren,19; 5. Thomas Karlsson, 21; 6. Bernd Zeiger, 28; 7. Ake Luks, 35; 8. Thomas Gross, 48; 9. Jean Cloude Vourthier,54; 10. Agu Tomingas, 57

Complete results at www.icesailing.org/frameset_euronews.htm

LASER MIDWINTERS EAST
Clearwater Yacht Club, Clearwater Florida. 81 boats.
Top ten places Full rig (all groups):
1. Zach Railer, 21 points; 2. Brett Davis, 26; 3. Kurt Taulbee, 33; 4. Clay Johnson, 40; 5. Mike Wilde, 47; 6. Marc Joabie, 52; 7. Spencer Weber, 57; 8. Mike Leigh, 69; 9. Nathaniel Stoffelsma, 93; 10. Conner Higgins; 93.

Top ten places, Radial Rig (all groups):
1. Eduardo Cordero, 12 points; 2. George Panayides, 15; 3. Charles Fulmer, 19; 4. Paige Railey, 20; 5. Bobby Noonan, 30; 6. Ryan Minth, 32; 7. Nigel Thomas, 45; 8. Ryan Shaughnesy, 46; 9. Sara Wright, 55; 10. Chris Branning, 57.

Complete results at www.clwyc.org/LaserMidwintersEast02/home.htm

CALIFORNIA LASER MASTERS
Mission Bay YC, San Diego, Feb 23- 24, winds 6 to 14 knots. 35 boats. Second stop on the Laser 2002 Masters Circuit.

Top Ten Places: 1. Doug Hart, 21 points; 2. Chuck Tripp, 25; 3. Ned Jones, 26; 4. Dave Leuck, 28; 5. Bill Symes, 33; 6. Bob Falk, 33; 7. Susie Pegel, 35; 8. Peter Drasnin, 36; 9. Nils Andersson, 40; 10. Larry Kleist, 41.

Complete results at mbyc.org

CALENDAR OF MAJOR EVENTS
June 8 - 9: New York YC Annual Regatta, Newport, RI. Americap II, IMS, 12 Metre and NYYC CR www.nyyc.org

June 11 - 16, Mumm 30 European Championship, Medemblik Netherlands, www.mumm30.nl

June 28th: Admiral Digby Cup Race from Bass Harbor, ME to Digby, Nova Scotia. Hosted by The Royal Western Nova Scotia Yacht Club and Points East Magazine. The Notice of Race and details of the rules and regulations are now posted at www.annapolisbasin.com/sys-tmpl/htmlpage

July 1st: Acadia Trophy series of two races in the Annapolis Basin off Digby Nova Scotia. Details complete with list of social events also posted at www.annapolisbasin.com/sys-tmpl/htmlpage

July 12-21: Race Week at Newport Presented by Rolex, New York YC. www.nyyc.org
12-16: Americap II, IMS, PHRF, 12 Metre O-D.
17: Distance race for all divisions
18-21: One-design

THE CURMUDGEON'S QUOTATIONS
Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute. THAT'S relativity. - Albert Einstein