SCUTTLEBUTT #272 - February 4, 1999
SUN MICROSYSTEMS AUSTRALIA CUP - Report by John Roberson
Sweden's Magnus Holmberg has charged up the ladder, and grabbed the lead at
the end of the second day of the Sun Microsystems Australia Cup. However it
was Sydney skipper Neville Wittey, who collected the first cash bonus,
taking home $3,000 for winning five consecutive races.
The Swede was enjoying the Perth climate after the snow and freezing
temperatures he left behind at home, and scored six wins in six races, in
an impressive day at the office. Neville Wittey had held the overnight lead
in the Sun Microsystems Australia Cup, having been undefeated on the first
day, with four straight wins, and came out today only needing one more gun
to take the money.
Facing up to Frenchman Luc Pillot, who represents his country's America's
Cup challenge, the Aussie made the most of the light and shifty winds to
take the gun and the money by nine seconds. However in the next race
Neville's chances of collecting a further $10,000 for winning ten straight
races, were blown away by Perth skipper Sebastien Destremau, who beat him
by eight seconds. Now it is Holmberg who is eyeing the $10,000, with
today's six victories added to his last race win from the first day, he has
to take his next three races to collect the money.
On Friday morning he faces Denmark's Morten Henriksen, local skipper
Sebastien Destremau and Italian Nicola Celon, who stand between him and the
money. Today's racing has been sailed in a shifty and fluctuating southerly
breeze, with skippers making big gains a losses by reading the wind right
After a long hot day on the water, Magnus Holmberg now sits at the top of
the ladder, with a total score of 7 wins and 2 losses, ahead of four
skippers sharing second place. -- John Roberson
|1. ||Magnus Holmberg || Sweden || 7 wins - 2 losses
|2. || Neville Wittey || Australia || 6 - 3
|2. ||Gavin Brady || New Zealand || 6 - 3
|2. || Peter Gilmour || Japan || 6 - 3
|2. || Tomislav Basic || Croatia || 6 - 3
|6. ||Sebastien Destremau || Australia || 5 - 4
|7. ||Chris Law || Britain || 3 - 6
|7. ||Nicola Celon || Italy || 3 - 6
|9. ||Luc Pillot || France || 2 - 7
|10. ||Morten Henriksen || Denmark || 1 - 8
Regatta website: http://sunaustcup.dowdigital.com.au
1998 ROLEX AWARDS
The winners of the 1998 Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year will be
announced on Friday, February 5 at a luncheon held at the New York Yacht
Club (New York, N.Y.). Established in 1961 by US SAILING and sponsored by
Rolex Watch U.S.A. since 1980, the Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year
awards recognize outstanding on-the-water achievement in the calendar year
A slate of nominees, determined by the membership of US SAILING, is
presented to a panel of accomplished sailing journalists, who together
discuss the merits of each nominee and then vote by secret ballot to
determine the ultimate winners.
The short list for Yachtsman of the Year includes: Vince Brun (San Diego,
Calif.), Paul Cayard (San Francisco, Calif.), Paul Foerster (Garland,
Texas), Terry Hutchinson (Annapolis, Md.), Jonathan and Charlie McKee
(Seattle, Wash.), John Ross-Duggan (Newport Beach, Calif.) and Nick Trotman
The short list for Yachtswoman of the Year includes: Betsy Alison
(Newport, R.I.), Margaret Gill (Weston, Mass.), Karen Thorndike (Snohomish,
Wash.) and Stephanie Wondollack (San Rafael, Calif.).
US SAILING will hold a public presentation of the 1998 Rolex Yachtswoman of
the Year on Saturday, February 6, 1999 at Sail Expo. The Yachtswoman of the
Year will participate in a question and answer session beginning at 10:00
a.m. The Yachtsman of the Year is unable to attend due to a prior
commitment. - Susan Cook
Check the US Sailing website, on Friday afternoon, February 5 to see who
will get the new watches: http://www.ussailing.org
Let Pacific Yacht Embroidery take your favorite picture or logo and convert
it to stitches. They specialize in custom work created by artists at an
affordable price. Call for quotes and a catalog of apparel to choose from.
Contact Frank Whitton at 619-226-8033 (email@example.com).
While Dave Perry is Long Beach, California racing in the Congressional Cup
Regatta, he will also be doing one of his celebrated seminars on the Racing
Rules of Sailing. Perry will focus on places on the race course where boats
tend to crowd up (the start, first leg, marks, etc.) and examine the rules
and their tactical implications in those situations.
The program will be at Alamitos Bay YC on Thursday, March 11 at 7:30 p.m.
Cost is $15 for adults and $5 for students, with all proceeds benefiting
the Pacific Coast Sailing Foundation. To make your reservation call the US
Sailing Center at (562) 433-7939. But do it early. Dave always generates a
Celebrated marine photographer Daniel Forster has assembled an impressive
pictorial portfolio of America's Cup images as well of things to see & do
in New Zealand: http://www.yachtphoto.com/
LETTERS TO THE CURMUDGEON
We read all of our e-mail, but simply can't publish every submission. Those
that we do publish are routinely edited for clarity, space (250 words max)
or to exclude personal attacks.
--From FrankWhitton-- Close results don't necessarily give the participants
the perception of fairness. Right or wrong is in the minds of the
participants. I have had conversations with a number of people racing IMS
at Key West and virtually all of them had glowing positive things to say
(about the IMS racing) and not all of these people were the winners.
There were 19 boats racing under IMS and 274 boats in the regatta. A large
percentage of the 19 were foreign entries. Where were the US boats? The US
premier winter event in sailing attracted a minuscule number of "local"
entries. The people that participated seemed to think they got a fair shake
so what are we doing wrong to attract people to IMS? Boats designed to the
rule seem to produce so called fair results (i.e. boats not designed to the
rule will not be treated "fair"). This is why we have failed in the US to
attract people in IMS.
Communication by the National Authority has painted a rosy picture of a
rule that is supposed to be FAIR to all which obviously is not true. Let
the people who are paid to know tell us the truth starting about the rules
shortcomings so that users are informed and not surprised after attempting
to use a system that has flaws. In the mean time PHRF continues to grow and
continues to attract those that could benefit under a fairer measurement
rule rather than a Performance rule.
-- From Jon Gundersen (In response to Peter Johnson's comments regarding
the separation in the (Key West) IMS fleets.) --I dare him to suggest to
any of the crews on the 50 footers in division one, or the 39 - 43 footers
in division 2 that their racing was not as close or tactically difficult as
the one designs. Peter was obviously not present to witness the 7 or 8 50s
rounding the top mark one after the other every race.
Key West must have had one of the largest and most competitive IMS fleets
ever seen in the US. Old boats such as Corel 45s and ILC 40s were racing
closely with newer designs in Division 2, and in Division 1 boats from
several different designers were battling hard. Many different countries
were represented and the majority of the boats were being sailed close to
their potential by top level crews. The rule was working extremely well
and the owners and crews were enjoying close racing on the water, and on
the corrected time board at the end of the day.
IMS has proven that it can keep up with the designers, boats can be
re-configured rather than replaced and remain competitive. The question now
is, will those people who have been knocking the rule so hard over the last
year or so admit that it is doing a good job and let it continue to
develop. Or will they rob us of the best rule that has ever existed by
replacing it on the false pretense that it is dead already??
-- From James Nichols -- And if ESPN takes all their toys and goes home,
wherrre, oh wherrre will we everrr find anotherrr TV networrrk willing to
invest some dollarrrs in sailinnnnnnng!?!?! Think about this for a minute.
Worldwide audience. Fox TV? There are at least a few hundred million people
on the planet who have no idea what that is.
-- From Chip Evaul (In response to David McCreary) -- Luddites? The last
time I checked, the sport of sailboat racing was available to those who
could sail, not those who could sail AND access websites. To *require*
sailors to get their communication: rules, results, meeting notes, etc.
from the internet will only serve to further reduce our base of
participants. Unlike us Buttheads, there is a significant portion of the
population which is still not computer savvy, and may not be for some time.
These people have every right to the same base of information and
communication as those who can log-on.
Please, let us not be so enamored of our computer aptitude that we alienate
those sailors who wish to be apprised of developments in our sport, but
wish not to have computers.
-- From Keri Shining -- I personally agree with EVERY WORD that Mr.
McCreary has said. Content is still king, and long live the king!
-- From Mike Schoettle, Vice President, US Sailing -- I appreciate David
McCreary's passion and thoughtful suggestions concerning US SAILING'S
website. He makes some very good points, and we will certainly take them
into consideration as we select a new website developer and redo the US
Also, Peter Houston makes a good point that there is marketing value in an
active website and therefor a future sponsorship opportunity.
-- From Julie Haines -- I have also been reading about this coveted 'Butt
t-shirt that only the elite are wearing. I'm wondering what one must do to
earn one of these famous (or should I say infamous) t-shirts. I guess for
most people nothing would seem to extreme (jumping through hoops, getting
tarred and feathered, taping up their hairy arms and then ripping off the
tape or whatever you can image) but I thought a simple request might be
enough. Please let me know if I must do something else (within reason --
like paying for it) and I'll be happy to oblige.
Curmudgeon's comment: We give away official 'Butthead tee shirts to our
contest winners, but the easy way to get one is to call Frank Whitton at
Pacific Yacht Embroidery, 619/226-8033. For $12.95 plus three dollars
shipping and handling you can be the most envied chick at the yacht club.
(The following is an excerpt from DEFENCE 2000, which is available from
John@roake.gen.nz -- US $48 per year.)
-- The 1999 Road to the America's Cup regatta will be held March 1 through
March 7. Prada Challenge, Yaka France, America True and Swiss Fast2000 will
battle it out to see who challenges Team New Zealand.
-- The building of Abracadabra 2000, Hawaii's first America's Cup yacht,
is ahead of schedule. Construction started in November and they expect to
have it ready for launching in May. Abracadabra's job site is a warehouse
at Barbers Point Harbour. The state Department of Transportation, Harbours
Division, helped by providing a favourable leasing arrangement on the
building. There are 16 workers on site, but that number will climb to 25 at
the end of the month. The boat is expected take about 16,000 man-hours to
complete. Meanwhile, construction on their second racing yacht will start
in February. When completed, the two boats will be kept at the marina at Ko
Olina, and ocean-tested off Oahu until they are shipped to New Zealand in
-- According to the latest estimates, the five month AC regatta starting
on October 18 will be worth NZ$1.3 billion to the New Zealand economy. The
value of the exposure through telecasts to an estimated 800 million
householders has been set at NZ$20billion. The America's Cup Challengers
Association is spending NZ$22million in New Zealand, whilst Team New
Zealand's defence costs are expected to hit NZ$35milllion. - John Roake
Wanted: a 40 - 50 foot race boat to charter for the Newport to Ensenada
Race by an experienced crew from outside of California. Contact Dick Horn,
TIP O' THE WEEK -- Putting on Your Game Face
Ever play ball? Baseball, basketball, football, anything. The first thing
you did on game day was to put on your uniform, right? The process of
putting on a uniform is also the opportunity to transcend yourself from
civilian to competitor. It's precisely at this time that athletes put on
their game face and begin to focus. Sailors could definitely take a page
from this book. Sailing for the most part moves from the social scene on
shore to a micro version on the way to the race course with the cry for
"let's go sailing" resulting in everyone scrambling from their early
morning soda to actual sailing. Taking five minutes for a meeting or
private meditation can move everyone's attention from elsewhere to the
present sailing conditions. Seems simple, but the better you get the
simpler things become. -- The Coach at Sailweb.net.
SPEED RECORD UPDATE
[Hans Bouscholte and Gerard Navarin are attempting to set a speed record
for crossing the Atlantic Ocean (without assistance) in an open 19' Inter
After the passage of a weak cold front the wind increased again last night
to wind force 6 (22-27 knots), occasionally force 7 (28-33 knots). The wind
direction was northeast, while the waves came from northerly directions
with wave heights reaching 3.5-4 meters on average. Today, during daylight,
the wind decreases a bit, but tonight it will regain its strength again to
the same force as last night, Beaufort 6-7. With less than 300 miles to go,
the estimated time of arrival still remains Friday evening, local time
(Guadeloupe), around sunset.
Website coverage: http://www.bouscholte.com/
AROUND ALONE - Re-start live coverage
Quokka Sports will be doing live coverage of the re-start of the Around
Alone Race as the boats head back into the Southern Ocean and race around
Cape Horn aiming for a sunny arrival in Punta del Este in a scant three to
Live coverage will include: Friday, February 5 (PST)/Saturday, February 6
(Local Auckland Time) (All times are approximate.)
-- 2:30pm/11:30am - Around Alone Audio show goes live featuring Quokka
reporter Steve Pizzo.
-- 2:30pm/11:40am - Race start and Leg 3 weather overview and analysis by
Commanders Weather, followed by an interview with Mark Rudiger, victorious
Whitbread navigator aboard EF Language, speaking about leg strategy.
-- 2:55pm/11:55am - Live commentary from Emily Robertson, from the
starting line on the water in Auckland.
-- 3:15pm/12:15pm - Coverage Ends.
Event website: http://www.aroundalone.com
THE CURMUDGEON'S COUNSEL
Look before you leap, but remember -- he who hesitates is lost.