SCUTTLEBUTT #205 -- October 26, 1998
BERMUDA GOLD CUP
Serving notice that his recent five-month absence from the international
match racing circuit did little to diminish his sailing skills, New
Zealander Russell Coutts won his fifth Bermuda Gold Cup today by beating
countryman Murray Jones, 3-1. Coutts and his long-time crew of Brad
Butterworth, Simon Daubney, and Warwick Fleury put on a masterful display
of tactical expertise which dazzled the several thousand spectators who
came to watch the action on Hamilton Harbour.
As the 5th seed in the regatta which brought 24 teams to Bermuda, Coutts
had to make his way past unseeded skipper Dean Barker in the opening round
of the Championship, 4th seed Gavin Brady in the Quarter-Finals, and top
seed and defending champion Peter Gilmour in yesterday's semi-finals.
Jones, the only unseeded skipper ever to make it to the Gold Cup final, had
a 5-2 score in the qualifying round robin, then beat 7th seed Neville
Wittey of Australia, 2nd seed Chris Law of Great Britain, and 3rd seed
Peter Holmberg of the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Coutts and Jones have tangled many times in the past, both in competition
and in training as co-members of Team New Zealand, the current defender of
the America's Cup. Coutts won that trophy in 1995 as the helmsman while
Jones served in the afterguard. The two have known each other since
boyhood and both learned to sail in Wellington, New Zealand.
Coutts takes home $17,000 for his victory and Jones pocketed $10,200. In
the petite finals, Gilmour beat Holmberg 2-0 to take third place and
$6,500. Holmberg won $4,800. -- Gay Larsen
Gold Cup Web site:
>> America True, The San Francisco Yacht Club's challenge for America's Cup
2000, has signed fourth ranked world match racer, New Zealand native Gavin
Brady. Brady's latest list of blue ribbon efforts include the Mumm 36 World
Championships (1996 and 1997), the Congressional Cup (1996 and 1997), the
Big Boat Series (aboard Beau Geste in 1996 and 1998), the York Cup (1997
and 1998), and the Polaris Block Trophy (1997 and 1998). In addition, Brady
served as tactician aboard the third place New Zealand TAGHeuer America's
Cup 1995 challenge, and he was the Chessie Racing helmsman in the 1997-98
Whitbread Round the World Race.
In a separate announcement, America True announced it has partnered with
James Betts Enterprises to build its first boat. Betts is working closely
with America True and together they have assembled many of the world's
finest boat builders.
The construction group is led by Team New Zealand veteran Peter Sowman, and
includes John McConaghy, an Australian boat builder with 30 years of high
tech boat building experience. "John has built every Australian America's
Cup boat since 1990," said America True design team leader Phil Kaiko.
Projected completion is Spring 1999. -- Grace Kim
The America True website:
>> French luggage maker Louis Vuitton will again sponsor the challenger
races for America's Cup 2000. They will also be responsible for the
communications of the event and the organization of the media centers.
Round 1 of elimination racing is scheduled to begin October 25, 1999. Louis
Vuitton first sponsored the challenger races in 1983 when the event was
sailed off Newport, R.I.
Annapolis Yacht Club -- Final results
1. Kip Meadows 13
2. Roland Arthur 29
3. Robert Hughes 34
4. Sledd Shelhorse 36
5. Nick Worth 38
THE NATIONS TROPHY
Australia's Mitch Booth won the closely contested Nations Trophy event by
one point from Spain's Fernando Leon, reversing their order of finish at
the 1996 Olympic Games in Savannah, GA. Booth was the Tornado catamaran
silver medalist in Savannah, while Leon took the gold. Leon was racing for
Team Unicaja in Cadiz.
Cam Lewis and his two-man crew representing the United States finished
third in The Nations Trophy raced in 25-foot one-design catamarans October
14-18, 1998, in the Water Sports Stadium of Cadiz, Spain. Lewis' crew were
both Tornado sailors. Sailing World magazine Multihull Sailor of the Year
(1991) Pete Melvin represented the US in Tornados at the Seoul Olympics.
Jay Glaser is an Olympic silver medalist and won the Worrell 1,000.
1. Mitch Booth (AUS), 4-1-4-2-1-1-1-4-4, 58 points
2. Fernando Leon (ESP), 1-2-1-1-3-6-2-2-3, 57
3. Cam Lewis (USA), 6-6-2-4-7-2-3-3-6, 26
4. Yvan Bourgnon (FRA), 3-7-7-3-2-7-8-1-8, 24
5. Grant Dalton (NZL), 8-4-5-6-6-4-6-8-1, 21
6. Theresa Zabell (ESP), 2-3-6-7-4-8-7-6-2, 21
7. Thommaso Chieffi (ITA), 5,8,3,5,5,5,4,5,5, 19
8. Roland Gaebler (GER), 7-5-DSQ-8-8-3-5-7-7, 7
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LETTERS TO THE CURMUDGEON
(Edited to our limit of 250 words)
>> From Frank Whitton -- Right on Bob Johnstone! If it ain't designed to
the rule it ain't got the right numbers. That's the answer to my question
put forth in Scuttlebutt #199 (Zephyrus/Pyewacket). Why don't the powers to
be stand up and tell us this so that we can work with it??? IMS that is. It
has the ability to be the best system and recognizing its shortcomings is
the first step to regaining the respect and confidence of the end users
>> From Bill Lee -- The IMS rule was envisioned to fairly handicap a wide
range of types. If bumping works to improve the rating of an otherwise
excellent boat, then the rule is wrong, not the boat.
>> From Carl Schumacher -- Peter Johnson's book called YACHT RATING points
out the difficulty in administering an international rule as Americans,
Europeans and Kiwis, all look at the sport and their boats quite
differently. Even within these groups the needs of the grand prix owners
(and their professional crews) and the recreational sailor differ. One
thing for sure, ocean racing needs a measurement rule that owners can have
enough confidence in to build and race boats. IMS isn't doing this.
Given today's technology any measurement rule is going to be type forming.
The sooner this is realized the sooner we can develop a measurement system
that uses this fact to produce boats that people want to own and race. It
is a noble gesture to continue to try to develop a rule that will encompass
as many different approaches as possible, but don't let this fairytale get
in the way of yacht racing today. Comparing a Swan 46 and a Mumm 30 by any
form of equation has not yet been perfected. Peter Johnson suggests that
this notion of total fairness in a measurement rule is an American delusion.
Any class, whether one-design or handicap, needs a leader that is strong
enough not to submit to the self-serving pressure of a few individuals at
the expense of the majority of the fleet. If owners and designers knew an
exploited loop hole was going to be closed right away, maybe they would
think twice about building boats before exposing the rule flaw to the
administrators. So far the ORC has not shown much stomach to stand up to a
vocal minority of well-healed owners and their professional advisors.
Robert Miller's 145ft Briand designed superyacht Mari Cha III came surfing
in from the Atlantic to slash 2 days 13 hours off the transAtlantic
monouhull record held by Ludde Ingvall's Maxi One Design Nicorette. Pushed
by a 50 knot gale and driving rain, the 22 strong crew pressed the New
Zealand built yacht hard over the final miles to complete the 2,950 miles
from New York to the Lizard in 8 days 23 hours 59 minutes.
Bob Miller said afterwards: "We have had a few problems but the boat has
behaved magnificently. She is a great ship. We have averaged 14.5 knots and
during one surf reached 30.8 knots, which is a record for the boat. "We
have had a problem with the booms and 1,000 miles out, the pounding damaged
the bow thruster which dropped down. We were not able to fix it, and have
completed the rest of the voyage with it stuck down which has slowed us.
The team sailing Maria Cha II hopes to build an even bigger monohull and
sail it in The Race.
LASER PAN-AM TRIALS
Ft Lauderdale, FL -- October 16-18, 1998
Special report from Bill Hardesty -- This year's Pan-Am trials consisted of
a small but very elite group of laser sailors. Nearly every US Olympic
campaigner made an appearance and the 24-boat fleet was full of high level
sailors from top to bottom. Gary Bodie, the newly hired "Head Olympic
Sailing Coach," held a debrief every night which brought the group together
to share information and make the everyone feel like a team. A large
majority of the group is headed down to Australia this winter and the team
learning approach should help the US rise out of it's recent slump in the
international laser circuit.
After a four day light air clinic held at the Miami, US Sailing Center, the
group was very well tuned up for a light air regatta. Typical regatta
situation brought just the opposite, with generally 15-25 knots and 4-5
1. Mark Mendelblatt
2. Brett Davis
3. John Myrdal
4. Jack Dreyfuss
5. Andy Lovell
6. Bill Hardesty
HIGH SCHOOL SAILING
PCISA held the Cressy eliminations, which is the single handed champs, at
the sailing center in long beach. 34 high schoolers sailed in Laser radials
with the top 5 qualifying to sail in the finals in Houston.
1. Troy Treaccar Newport Harbor
2. Brian Lake University High of SD
3. Andrew Campbell Bishop High
4. Mike Anderson-Mitterling Coronado High
5. David Horchart Mission Bay High
On Saturday, US Sailing Association President Jim Muldoon presented the
Hyannis Yacht Club with a "Special Presidential Award" for hosting the 505
North American and 505 World Championships. -- Ali Meller
I LOVE IT
In the November issue of Sailing World magazine, Brad Dellenbaugh made some
comments that I'm sure everyone has read by now, but let me repeat just a
few of them for emphasis:
"In most fleets, racers deserve to know if they're over early. As a racer,
I definitely want to know if I'm over early. Race committees, please notify
me. When I'm PRO, I often use the VHF to communicate other information to
the fleet to help make our intentions clear. Race committees should be
encouraged to spread the word on the racecourse."
Curmudgeon's comment -- YES! I know the inshore committee discussed hailing
OSC competitors at the US Sailing's AGM this past weekend. Did anything
come of that?
STFYC ONE DESIGN INVITATIONAL
MERCURY: 1. Pax Davis / Richard Hubbert, 9.00, 2. David West / Fogelgrist,
10.00, 3. John Hansen / Tony Basso, 13.00, 4. Dan Simmons / Laurie Davis
21.00, 5. Brendan Bradley / Patrick Bradley, 22.00, 5. Jim Taylor / Walter
Smith, 22.00; SNIPE 1. Shawn Bennett / Debbie Bennett, 5.00, 2. Jaime
Fontanella / Dani, 10.00 3. Doug Howson/Tom Potter, 13.00; SOLING PCCs J.
Madrigali / C. Healy/K.Stanke, 5.00, 2. John Walton/Ezra Culver / T.Kamps,
10.00, 3. I. Wareham / A. Vance / J.Rodenburger, 12.00.
The petal is on the metal. Blasting along for the third day with average
boatspeeds ranging from the mid- to upper-teens, the leading five boats in
Class I of the Around Alone race this morning were continuing to enjoy
near-perfect reaching conditions while gobbling up the miles toward Cape
Town. With northerly winds funneling down the back of a major high-pressure
system sparking her attack, Isabelle Autissier had once again slipped past
Marc Thiercelin early today to top the leader board with just over 1,500
miles to go to the finish line.
Remarkably, Giovanni Soldini may also play a big role in the Leg 1 picture.
Two weeks ago, he seemed hopelessly out of contention. Today, after setting
a record for fastest-ever 24-hour run by a singlehanded monohull skipper,
he is right back in the hunt. Race officials this morning announced that
Soldini had bettered the mark that was reported yesterday. Soldini's new
race record of 386.9 nautical miles was established between the 1540 GMT
position updates on October 24 and 25 (the earlier number-381.1 n.m-was
posted between the 0940 position updates). But he wasn't the only one
hitting big numbers. Here are the mileage figures for the other Class I
sailors aboard Groupe Finot Open 60s during the same time period:
Autissier, 337.6; Thiercelin, 351.4; third-place competitor Mike Golding,
355.4; and fellow Englishman Josh Hall, 314. -- Herb McCormick
CLASS I (Dist. to Finish)
1. Autissier 1527
2. Thiercelin 1542
3. Golding 1616
4. Hall 1691
5. Soldini 1754
1. Mouligne 2261
2. Van Liew 2278
3. Garside 2479
4. Davie 2889
5. Stricker 3039
CCCC -- Curmudgeon's Catalina Cruising Comments
It was absolutely fantastic. October may have just slipped past September
as the curmudgeon's favorite time at the island.
THE CURMUDGEON'S OBSERVATION
It's not what you have in your life, but who you have in your life that