SCUTTLEBUTT No. 1194 - November 7, 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.
USA EARNING STRIPES
Auckland, New Zealand: Team Dennis Conner were out sailing at 6am on November 4, testing the USA 66, used so far in the trials, against USA 77, which sunk off Long Beach in August and has sailed little since.
The need to cram in as much testing time as possible, stems from Conner's assertion that his team needs to find five to 10 seconds per mile of upwind speed.
Stars & Stripes meet GBR in the best of seven series starting next Tuesday, with the Americans keen to shed the image of a team long on reputation but short on performance.
The form of skipper Ken Read is such a concern and that Conner and tactician Terry Hutchinson have been given a spell at steering, pays testament to this.
Notwithstanding August's sinking, the crew have looked ring-rusty and their sail and mast development is well behind the likes of Team New Zealand, OneWorld, Alinghi and Oracle BMW. -- Tim Jeffery in the Telegraph. Full text at
With two bullets in Race 3 and now Race 4, reigning World Etchell Champion Stuart Childerly is setting a hot pace for any challengers in the 2002 World Championship being sailed on Auckland's Gulf Harbour.
While rain and strong wind was forecast for Day 3 of the 2002 Waiwera Infinity Water Etchell World's in Auckland New Zealand, brilliant sunshine and 16-18 knot westerly produced superb racing conditions this morning. Principal Race Officer John Parish was able to get the fleet away on the second attempt after a shift induced general recall at 10:20 am New Zealand time this morning. The wind was 16 knots from 250.
The fifth race was underway at press time, with Gavin Brady leading. -- Rob Kothe in sail-world.com (updated practically live during the racing...)
Top ten standings (preliminary) after 4 races:
1. Stuart Childerly, GBR, 6 points
2. Mark Bradford, AUS, 27
3. Nick Rogers, AUS, 36
4. John Bertrand, AUS, 38
5. Cameron Miles, AUS, 43
6. Peter McNeill, AUS, 45
7. Dennis Conner, USA, 68 (the website has his nationality listed as NZL!)
8. Lindsay Kennedy, NZL, 70
9. Barry Fairley, AUS, 79
10. Cameron Thorpe, NZL, 83
Event website: www.etchells.org.nz/2002_worlds.htm
Class 1 leader Bernard Stamm is looking over his shoulder. It's hard not to when you are running a tight rope between ideal conditions and the possibility of getting trapped in a high pressure system, and your competition is bearing down on you waiting for you to make a mistake. Bernard has the most to lose because he will be the first boat affected by any sudden movement of the high. His nearest competition, Emma Richards on Pindar and Thierry Dubois on Solidaires, are just waiting for something to happen.
Further to the north Brad van Liew on Tommy Hilfiger Freedom America was nursing a tired body. "Last night was one of the worst of my sailing career," he told me in a satellite call this afternoon. "I have always disliked the doldrums, but now I can truly say that I hate the place." Sometime after midnight last night Brad got caught in massive squall. "It was more of a weather front than a squall," Brad said. "The wind started to build and then before I knew it, it was blowing 55 knots from the southeast." I was in a full gale for five hours." Like the Class 1 boats before him, van Liew was finding this area of the doldrums particularly volatile. Both Emma Richards and Thierry Dubois described similar giant squalls that had them careening on the edge of disaster.
Class 1 - Open 60s
1. Bobst Group, Bernard Stamm, 1637 miles to finish of leg 2 in Capetown
2. Pindar, Emma Richards, 268 miles to leader
3. Solidaires, Thierry Dubois, 307 nm
4. Hexagon, Graham Dalton, 590 nm
5. Ocean Planet, Bruce Schwab, 2771 nm
6. Tiscali, Simone Bianchetti, 5054 nm (still in Spain for repairs)
Class 2 - 50s and 40s
1. Tommy Hilfiger Freedom America, Brad Van Liew, 4165 miles to finish
2. Spirit of Yukoh, Kojiro Shiraishi, 447 miles to leader
3. Everest Horizontal, Tim Kent, 451 nm
4. Bayer Ascensia, John Dennis, 511 nm
5. BTC Velocity, Alan Paris, 547 nm
6. Spirit of Canada, Derek Hatfield, 550 nm
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Cascais, Portugal: Hong Kong Clipper, skippered by Justin Taylor, took line honours at 22:59:42 (GMT) today, Monday, 4 November, to win the Liverpool to Cascais race, the first of the 16 contests in the Clipper 2002 Round The World Yacht Race.
Johnathan Brockhouse and the Jersey Clipper crew then raced across the finish line at 23:06 to secure an impressive 2nd place after an intense match between the two lead boats.
New York, skippered by the first ever female Clipper skipper, finished just a 5 minutes behind London; a testimony to the closeness of racing between the eight strong Clipper fleet.
Racing for the next stage of Leg 1, Portugal to Cuba, will start on Sunday, 10 November at 12:00 with the crews facing their first ocean crossing, a 4,060 nautical mile race to Cuba.
Port Website: www.cm-cascais.pt
ROUTE DU RHUM
Saint Malo, France: Once more the magic of the Route du Rhum will fill the air, mixing professionals and amateurs on boats that are everything from brand new high tech racing machines to just simply a production model. "Everything will be permitted in the Route du Rhum", envisaged the founder Michel Etevenon, and this is still respected. On the start line some of the greatest names in ocean racing are present, like Ellen MacArthur, Loïck Peyron, Alain Gautier, Roland Jourdain or Mike Golding, but there are also names lesser known who participate to experience the great adventure of solo racing.
There six divisions of boats racing: 60 foot multihulls, 60 monohulls, monohull classes I, II and III -- lengths of 55-58, 50, and 40-45 feet respectively, and Class II multihulls 45-50 feet.
- The start of the multihulls in class 2 is on Saturday 9 November at 13h35
- The start of the Open 60 monohulls and the monohulls in class 1, class 2 and class 3 is on Saturday 9 November at 13h45
- The start of the 60' multihulls is on Sunday 10 November at 13h45
* The Discovery Channel has five minute pre-race features that started November 4, at 8:30 PM in the UK, 8:55 PM across Europe excluding Italy, France and Germany, Africa and the Middle East. There is a listing of repeat times for all the broadcasts at offshorechallenges.com
* You won't see anything like this again for another four years: check out the shots of Saint Malo's harbour, the throngs of visitors and dozens of other great shots of the boats, skippers and shore teams on Gilles Martin-Raget's website: www.martin-raget.com/fr/actu/evenement.cfm?THEM_POS=9&detail=1
Event site: routedurhum.org
20 YEARS OF ULTIMATE SAILING CALENDARS
And the 2003 is the best one yet! Sharon Green's annual portfolio of the most colorful, exhilarating images of competitive sailing. 24 fabulous photographs. Order your calendars and other Ultimate Sailing products at www.ultimatesailing.com
LETTERS TO THE CURMUDGEON - firstname.lastname@example.org
(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 Christian Fevrier: John Rousmaniere writes: "She won a trophy called variously "the Squadron Cup" or "the 100 Pound Cup" (that's what it cost)."
This would suggest that the amount was the price paid to the Garrards by the RYS and not the cash prize that John Cox Stevens received with the trophy during the presentation ceremony at the Castle, on the 22 August 1851.
It surprizes me a little bit as John has confirmed the fact a long time ago in his excellent book "The Low Black Schooner, America 1851-1945" : "Historians have long interpreted the financial ingredient in the name as a reference to the price charged by its London manufacturer, Robert Garrard. Rather, the amount mentioned was a cash price that accompanied the Trophy. In an article summarizing the 1856 yachting season in the 9 November 1856 issue of Bell's Life, William Cooper wrote : "The great race was, as it always is, that for the Squadron Cup, or rather for a prize of 100 guineas, subscribed to by members of the RYS" Since a guinea was 13 shillings, 1 shilling more than a pound, and since a pound was worth US$ 5, the cash prize was the equivalent of US$541."
* From Larry Law: Regarding comments in the most recent Butt issues (1192 & 1193) concerning the "most in touch boats", I have to laugh. Have we become so focused on each of our little corners of the sailing world that we would now try to debate this level of detail? Let me suggest, as a sailor who has only enjoyed racing / sailing for the past 35 years, that the argument ends when you consider an 8 year old in his/her first dinghy regatta, 20 boats on the start line, in any kind of conditions. Now there is a skipper who is "in touch" and frankly probably overwhelmed by it all - there's your "in touch" winner. Whether it's a Sabot dinking through the harbor, Pyewacket surfing on its way to Hawaii at 20+, an Ausi 18 with its mast on fire - a couple sailing away for the weekend - we are all the "most in touch" with our experience and the boat. Sailing is one of the most "in touch" things I could possibly imagine - no matter what the boat in question. I suggest that everyone sail this weekend and get more "in touch".
* From Bob Kiernan (edited to our 250 word limit): It is my pleasure to watch yacht racing, match or fleet. I crew and skipper, and when the America's Cup or more correctly the build up to it is on I am excited to watch or view any possible means to witness the event. Last weekend I watched the Rolex Women's Matches where Betsy Allison out-sailed all participants.
I watch the water ahead for possible puffs and try to read if it is a lift or knock. Watch the timing if tacks as compared to the breeze and waves. That to me is a challenge and to watch match racers navigate the course is actually fun. The competition is always trying to jam you up or benefit from something you didn't.
Another challenge is reading bickerings from people who want crashes or general damage from the course to make the race more interesting. If you people knew more of what was going on you would see the great challenges and the fear of having to pass your opponents stern or give way at a mark rounding. Racing is fun and a sport to those doing it. If you feel the need to see carnage go elsewhere for it
* From George Backhus: I had a chuckle at Rich Robert's comments in 'butt #1193. "Maybe Bertelli knows something about boats as well as upscale fashion accessories". Yea sure, and next season supermodels in Paris will be sashaying down the runway in sexy Doug Peterson designed apparel.
* From Ian Hickling: I enjoy reading the history of the AC debated. One issue I've not seen mentioned is how the name changed from the 100 Guineas Cup to the Americas Cup. Is it a matter of possession conferring naming rights, and if so, could we Kiwis now change the name to the Kiwi Cup or Aotearoa Cup (Maori name for New Zealand)?
SAILORS QUALIFY U.S.A. FOR 2004 PARALYMPIC GAMES
Portsmouth, RI: Top finishes by American athletes at the recent 2002 World Disabled Sailing Championship have qualified the U.S.A.'s entries for the 2004 Paralympic Games in both sailing events: the three-person Sonar and the singlehanded 2.4 Metre. Organized by the International Foundation of Disabled Sailors and held in The Netherlands, the championship attracted 119 competitors from 19 countries. As the first of two qualifying events (the final qualifier will be held in September 2003), the championship qualified the top-seven placing countries in each event for berths to the 2004 Paralympic Games. Greece, as Paralympic host, receives an automatic entry in both events.
2.4 Metre - Placing second in the final two races of the nine-race series moved Maine sailor Tom Brown (Northeast Harbor) into medal position and qualified the U.S.A.'s berth to the 2004 Paralympics in the 2.4 Metre class.
Sonar - Skipper Rick Doerr (Clifton, N.J.), and crew Tim Angle (Marblehead, Mass.), Maureen McKinnon-Tucker (Marblehead, Mass.) and Richard Hughes (Philadelphia, Pa.) placed fourth overall in the 23-boat fleet.
While these sailors have qualified the U.S.A., they may not be the ultimate representatives at the 2004 Paralympics. In sailing, the U.S. Paralympic Team Trials are a winner-takes-all event - with only the first-place finisher in each event earning a spot on the team. Team Trials will be held at the St. Petersburg Yacht Club (St. Petersburg, Fla.) in November of 2003. For more information visit: www.ussailing.org/olympics/Paralympic/
LATIN RASCALS HEAD TO THE BAHAMAS
Paradise Island, Bahamas - Just eliminated from the challenger races for the America's Cup, Italy's Vincenzo Onorato has made a beeline to Paradise Island in the Bahamas, where the Rolex Farr 40 World Championship begins next Wednesday, Nov. 13. The four-day event is to be preceded this weekend by the MeesPierson Bahamian Championship at which all but a few in the now 25-boat Rolex fleet will compete. Onorato is bringing with him four of his America's Cup crewmen to sail as part of team Mascalzone Latino, the same name given to his America's Cup campaign.
"I took immediate action because we enjoy sailing and we love the Farr 40 class," said Onorato, who finished second at the 1999 Farr 40 Worlds and won both the IMS Worlds and the Mumm 30 Worlds in 2000. "I'm happy to be back." Onorato, who will charter a boat for both the MeesPierson and the Rolex events, owns two Farr 40s but logistically could not get either to the Bahamas in time.
Complete information on the star-studded fleld of sailors is at farr40.org/racing/2002worlds/default.htm
BREAK-IN AND THEFT AT TEAM DENNIS CONNER
Auckland Police are warning America's Cup fans not to buy any cheap Stars and Stripes gear if it comes their way.
Goods worth around $12,000 were taken from the US syndicate's gift shop in a burglary last night. Stolen items include two dozen pairs of sunglasses, five Citizen watches and 10 blue Nautica jackets.
The jackets have a Stars and Stripes logo on the front left breast and a Nautica emblem on the upper left arm, and are valued at $7000.00. -- xtramsn.co.nz/news/0,,3762-1900167,00.html
THE CURMUDGEON'S CONUNDRUM
Why do psychics have to ask you for your name?