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SCUTTLEBUTT #210 -- November 2, 1998

GUEST EDITORIAL -- By Dan Nowlan

I followed the verbal exchanges between Tom Schnackenberg and Paul Henderson regarding America's Cup fees with interest, but detached interest. These were the Big Boys duking it out and it had little direct impact on my sailing activities. Last week at the US SAILING Annual General Meeting I learned just how wrong I was. My first awakening was learning from Terry Harper that US SAILING may not be able to renew Transpac's Category C advertising license. ISAF has a proposal to delete Category B advertising from Appendix G of the RRS and require all Category C licensing to be through them! ISAF also has a proposal whereby they would own the media rights to any regatta using the RRS.

Now it's not just the Big Boys. Those meager few ESPN sailing programs we watch - Ultimate Sailing, Kenwood Cup, etc. would be required to get permission from or maybe pay a fee to ISAF. Can they survive additional costs.? Will those events be filmed or photographed if the photographer does not own the photos? Could that mean Coast Cadillac / North Sails Race Week must pay a fee to have those sponsors names associated with the regatta. Bye bye shirts with sponsor's names and those Mt. Gay hats.

Maybe I am a reactionary, but why a power play by ISAF that has implications deep within our sport? Putting on good events is a challenge now. If obtaining sponsorship is made more difficult with a permission requirement and maybe a fee requirement the net result will be something smaller at the racers end.

Finally, if all of this has rationale behind it that displays a well thought plan to make our sport better and have us small fry sailors see a favorable impact at our level, why is this the first we have heard about it? Why hasn't the plan been explained? Time to do that has run out -- the vote occurred over this weekend at the at the ISAF Annual Conference in Palma.

AMERICA'S CUP

The America's Cup Challenge Association (ACCA) announced an agreement with TAG Heuer to be Timing Sponsor for the Louis Vuitton Cup. TAG Heuer will also sponsor the America's Cup Match, which starts in Auckland, February 19, 2000.

Agreement for North American broadcast rights for the Louis Vuitton Cup and the America's Cup has been reached with ESPN, the American television network. Meaningful progress has been made in securing broadcast rights in other nations, such as Japan, Italy, Spain and France, as well. The 1995 America's Cup was reportedly watched by 40-billion viewers in 172 countries.

Dates for the Louis Vuitton Cup (LVC) and the America's Cup Match have been finalized:

LVC Round Robin 1 begins October 18, 1999
LVC Round Robin 2 - November 6
LVC Round Robin 3 - December 2
LVC Semifinals - January 2, 2000
LVC Finals - January 25
America's Cup Match - February 19

Livius Sherwood, an eminent jurist who served 33 years as a magistrate, provincial-court judge and tax-court judge in Canada, has been elected to the ACCA Board of Directors. Judge Sherwood, an accomplished racing sailor for 44 years, has been serving on America's Cup juries since 1974. He becomes the seventh board member, replacing Mason R. Chrisman, a NYYC director. The appointment of Sherwood to the seven-member ACCA Board of Directors nullifies the New York YC's 4-3 majority on the board, a majority that gave the challenger of record veto power should the board have to rule on a dispute.

Other ACCA board members are Commodore James, David K. Elwell and A.R.G. Wallace all of the NYYC, and Emili Miura, of the Nippon Yacht Club (Japan), Marco Piccinini, of the Yacht Club Punta Ala (Italy), and Douglas D. Smith, of the St. Francis Yacht Club (USA).

ACCA and the defender, the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, will make a significant contribution to the International Sailing Federation (ISAF), the sport's governing body, to help support its programs. The agreement is the result of a high-level meeting held last week in England. The amount is well in excess of contributions made for this sporting event in the past. The challengers and defender will now work with ISAF to assemble the best possible race-management officials.

Presently there are 16 challengers from 10 nations. Thirteen of them attended the October 25-27 meeting in Bermuda.

For more information: michaell@edgenet.net

SPEED SAILING

A minor structural problem followed by a sudden decrease in sail power are being analyzed as the reasons for causing the Australian world sailing speed record contender, Macquarie Innovation, to capsize and break up last week. The triple-hulled sailing machine was travelling at about 40 knots on its second run of the day when it suddenly went out of control, charged off to leeward, jibed and capsized. Skipper Simon McKeon and crewman Tim Daddo escaped injury when they were hurled from the crew cockpit, taking much of it with them. It is expected to have Macquarie Innovation rebuilt and back on the water later this week. -- Rob Mundle, Grand Prix Sailor

For the full story: http://www.sailingworld.com

POWER GLOATING

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LETTERS TO THE CURMUDGEON

>> From Robert Hughes -- Rolex yachtsman of the year, either Cayard for the Whitbread, Vince Bruin for Melges worlds and 2nd in J24 worlds, Terry Hutchinson for J24 worlds (and all other J24 regatta's) Lewmar cup and 1d35 Nationals or John Kostecki for his normal performances.

>> From Kip Meadows-- I'll take a shot at the Rolex, although I admit to some personal prejudice. It is hard to match the record that Terry Hutchinson has had this year, being the current title holder in all three major J-24 regattas (midwinters, north americans and worlds); boat of the week at Key West; Mumm 30 Lewmar Cup; and 1D 35 National Championship, for which I can personally attest he deserves a great deal of the credit.

I think the Rolex should reflect `contribution to sailing' as well as excellence on the race course, and Terry's willingness to help two amateurs win key regattas, in addition to his personal victories in the J-24 class, reflect the diversity of his talent (helmsmanship AND tactics), and his interest in promoting sailing.

>> From Ben Mitchell -- Yachtsman of the Year. ???? Vince Brun. Melges 24 World Champion J-24 NA Champion, World's 2nd. But if you're going offshore how can it be anybody besides Paul Cayard??????????? Third would of course be Mark Reynolds.

>> From Carol Boe -- Rolex Yachtsman of the year? I vote for the 1998 Cal 20 National Champ Doug McLean because he's so darn cute! Does that count for anything?

Curmudgeon's comments: I'm getting enough input to keep this thread going for a while. However, I find it interesting that no one has submitted any thoughts about who will win the Rolex for Yachtswoman of the year. What do suppose that means?

>> From James Nichols -- (Regarding big fish in small pond) I've had limited experience in yacht racing - 3 or 4 years in Finns, 8 or so in Stars - and aside from "lucking" onto the cover of Sailing World in 1988 at ABYC Olympic Classes, don't have much in the way of fame or fortune to show for it ... but it never occured to me that a weekend warrior like myself was wasting his time trying to compete with the big boys. When I first began crewing in Stars in 1984, there was a huge difference between the leaders and the middle of the pack, but for whatever complex, sociopolitical factors might be responsible, the competition grew much tighter over the next 8 years. What separated the Mark Reynolds, Vince Bruns, Ben Mitchells, etc. from the rest of them was ... the rest of them only put their boats in the water when there was a race. Those guys up in front are making fewer mistakes than the rest of the fleet. If you're not willing to make a commitment to practice and train and improve, then be honest with yourself: what you're doing is a hobby, not a sport.

>> From Lance Brown, Santa Cruz Yachts -- One thing for sure, that is reflected in comments here from Bill Lee, Rod Johnstone, Carl Schumaker, and Frank Whitton, as soon as designers start chasing the "rule" it foretells the end of that rule. If a measurement provides a credit for a design attribute that does not enhance the performance of the boat you eventually end up with some very strange looking boats that are inherently slow. Did we all forget the IOR one tonners?

>> From A.C. Pyle -- Re: the debate over hailing OCS...it appears that the two sides (R/C and competitors) are clearly polarized. If you use the analogy that competitors are customers and the R/C exists to serve the sport and subsequently the customers then why not employ an age old successful business practice: Give The Customer What He Wants. Given that the sport of racing is declining and USSA and everyone else is trying to figure out how to get more people interested in the sport let's try to think user-friendly.

AWARDS

Arthur J. "Tuna" Wullschleger (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) has been awarded with US SAILING's Nathanael G. Herreshoff Trophy. Considered US SAILING's most prestigious honor, the Herreshoff trophy is awarded annually to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the sport.

As a sailor, race manager, and international juror, Wullschleger has been involved with sailing for a lifetime. His sailing career includes some twenty-five Southern Ocean Racing Conferences (SORC), eighteen Newport-to-Bermuda Races, six Fastnet Races, four transAtlantic passages, and numerous trohpies, championships and sailing honors. He is a past commodore of the Larchmont (N.Y.) Yacht Club and the Storm Trysail Club.

As an international juror, Wullschleger is known for the high standards he has achieved in judging regattas around the world. In 1998, New York Times sportswriter Barbara Lloyd wrote, "Any regatta is as good as the judge who enforces the rules, which may explain the prestige attached to competitions in which Arthur J. Wullschleger is present." He has judged more than 250 events in the past decade. In the past four years alone, he has spent over 600 hours in protest hearings and deliberations, in 25 countries.

Wullschleger also received the ISAF Silver Medal at the Annual General Meeting.

Sailor, author and television personality Gary Jobson (Annapolis, Md.) was named the winner of the US SAILING Captain Joe Prosser Award. The Prosser Award, considered US SAILING's highest honor for training, is awarded each year to recognize outstanding contributions to sailing education by an individual or a program.

"Gary has made many contributions to sailing education," said Steve Colgate. He has written eleven books; coached at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and the U.S. Naval Academy; authored the original Instructor's Manual for the Training Committee of US SAILING; organized innumerable racing clinics, beginning in the 1970s; and volunteered time and talent to be the keynote speaker at the National Junior Sailing Symposium. Through television, Jobson can be credited with taking sailing to a wider audience.

Additionally, US Sailing President's Awards were presented to: Brad Dellenbaugh (Alexandria, Va.) for outstanding leadership as Regatta Chairman of the Gosling/ISAF World Team Race Championships held in Miami (Fla.) in February 1998; Hyannis (Mass.) Yacht Club, for their excellence in hosting the 505 North Americans and World Championships this September, both regattas of which drew fleets of 100-plus boats; and Betsy Altman (Chicago, Ill.), for spearheading the acquisition of a $40,000 U.S. Coast Guard grant for Phase I of the Sailing Smart program.

ABYC HALLOWEEN REGATTA

A CAT: Pete Melvin; 505: Bob Little; CAL 20: 1) Doug McLean/Tom Leweck 2) Mark Gaudio/Craig Fletcher 3) Chuck Clay 4) Mike Sentovich 5) Hank Schofield/Vahan Skenderian.

AROUND ALONE

Saturday was a day the sailors in Cape Town will remember for a long time. It began with Mike Golding putting on a sailing clinic in the last five miles of a 7,000-mile run to take first place in Class I for the opening leg of Around Alone. It continued when a slimmed-down, buffed-up Isabelle Autissier slipped across the line hours later and served notice that, even with her older boat, she will continue to be a force to be reckoned with whenever she goes to sea. And it finished when, just before sunset, Marc Thiercelin roared across the finish line in a 45-knot gale just moments before his tired Kevlar mainsail spectacularly blew into pieces. Like Thiercelin, the main had given it everything it had.

All three boats broke the record for this leg of the race.

Meanwhile, the Class II boats will be on the course for a few more days: 1) Mouligne (0850 miles to go) 2) Van Liew (1011) 3) Garside (1077) 4) Davie (2119) 5) Stricker (2239)

Event website http://www.aroundalone.com/

ISAF ANNUAL MEETING

The second day of the ISAF Annual Conference saw the Farr 40 and Maxi One Design offshore classes obtain recommendation by the International Offshore Classses committee for recognised ISAF Class status, final approval expected later this week. The decision on recommending the Sydney 40 (the middle boat for the 199 Champagne Mumm Admiral's Cup) see http://rorc.org/cmac99/sydney40/ was deferred, there are only three boats built at this time.

Big discussions going on this week involve the selection of windsufing equipment for the 2004 Olympics, the Funboard Class has a proposal for a single board (to be selected from a list of recognised, approved builders) and three sails, no size limits. Whether this represents the future of the sport or the detriment to a one design concept and currently very successful IMCO board / rig is a matter of no small amount of discussion. As usual the Finn class threw a great party, we'll have photos on the Finn Class site tomorrow, linked from the conference websites. At least 200 persons there, half of them gate crashers (another proud Finn tradition) who were warmly welcomed by Finn Class president Philippe Rogge.

And we collared ISAF President Paul Henderson and can now announce the details of the dollar figure that will be paid to ISAF for category C fees and individual syndicate fees for the next America's Cup: The Category C fee is $350,000 USD, and each of the 17 syndicates will pay $10,000, for a total of $520,000. The Category C fee will be divided as follows: 40% to ISAF, 30% to the host nation (NZL), 30% divided up amongst the national authorities of the nations from which the challenger syndicates come. The $170,000 fee will be set aside for the training of International Judges and Umpires.

Conference website: http://sailing.org/98november/

The following is a special report to the 'Butt-heads from the ISAF Annual Conference currently underway in Palma Majorca, Spain. Canadian Steve Tupper reporting:

I attended a Empirical Handicapping Forum where various people (mostly technical) presented new and interesting concepts on PHRF or as it has been decided to call it in ISAF Empirical Handicapping. As normal it was found that most people shared the same common problems of how -- how to deal with dissimilar boat types; how to decide if handicapping should be time on time or time on distance: how to identify and deal with Crew proficiency.

A major step forward was a discussion on the future of Empirical Handicapping and the place it will play in ISAF. It seems likely that there will be a new committee operating with the Sailing Committee which will deal with the common problems world wide with dealing with this group of sailors which most people admit comprise by far the majority of sailing in the developed countries. The most significant item by far to our PHRF system is the development of a worldwide database, which will facilitate identification of the more than 6000 different types of standard production boats in the world.

Today was the first Council meeting. This meeting was the opportunity for the President and the Executive Committee to present new issues and give their position to Council on many old. Issues that were covered were:

MONOPOLY OF SAILMAKERS IN MANUFACTURERS CLASSES

-- It was identified that this is a problem and noted that there is a tendency for the sails in monopoly classes to be more expensive than in classes where there are multiple suppliers. It was suggested that the Common Market rules might legislate against this type of restraint of trade.

REQUIREMENT OF OLYMPIC CLASSES TO PARTICIPATE IN A COMBINED WORLDS IN THE PRE-OLYMPIC YEAR

-- The Council supported the executive in including this as a condition of becoming an Olympic Class. It is felt that there were benefits to both Classes and ISAF in this type of event to promote sailing and simplify participation from countries.

COMBINING COMMITTEES AND REDUCING THE NUMBER OF COMMITTEES

-- It is proposed that the Youth and Training Committees be combined and that the Women's committee be disbanded and that all committees have a minimum of two female members. This will be debated during the week and more than likely some resolution will be delayed until next spring so that a time line can be established for this type of review by next spring.

Advertising Code -- A new proposal was considered to restructure the advertising code so that competitors would determine if they wanted to advertise and if so buy a annual National License for National and Local events and a International License from ISAF. There was significant debate and questions. There is little doubt that this issue will be frequently re-visited during the week.

Category A as it presently exists will be the default. It appears that there are many countries who is already licensing their competitors for Category B advertising and this would just be an expansion of that. The license fee is anticipated to be based on the cost of the boat and be a small percentage of the new cost. Each National Authority would develop its own charges for domestic events. International Licenses would be about 300 for the average dinghy and be scaled upwards for more expensive boats.

Also being considered would be the abolition of Category B. The major change will be to guarantee the sailor the right to display his advertising for the year and development of a method of sending the sailor to the sponsor to get support to pay for the infrastructure of sailing. It is important to note that advertising would become competitor elected and the competitor will have the choice of opting out if he wants. There will likely be many changes to this as it develops, so stand by for modification.

Also, the size of permitted prizes for eligible ISAF events was increased from $10,000 to $20,000.

More strength was given to ISAF's position in regards to selecting and approving the various race officials for events such as Olympics, World Championships, and Regional Games. -- Steve Tupper

THE CURMUDGEON'S CONUNDRUM

Why are there five syllables in the word "monosyllabic?