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SCUTTLEBUTT #425 - October 25, 1999

470 Men: 1 Paul Foerster / Bob Merrick Garland, 19.00, 2. Morgan Reeser /Kevin Burnham, 36.00 3. Steven Hunt /Michael Miller, 48.00, 4. Kevin Teborek /Talbott Ingram, 48.00 5. Peter Katcha /Jim Elvart Dalles, 50.00.

470 Women: 1 JJ Isler /Pease Glaser, 21.00 2. Courtenay Dey /Alice Manard, 25.00 3. Whitney Connor /Elizabeth Kratzig Noank, 34.00. (

49er: 1. Jonathan McKee /Charlie McKee, 29.00, 2. Morgan Larson /Kevin Hall, 34.00, 3. Andy Mack /Adam Lowry, 51.00, 4. Jay Renehan /Chris Lanzinger, 58.00, 5. Kris Henderson /Allan Johnson, 92.00.

Mistral Men: 1. Gebhardt, Mike, 13 2. Somnitz, Randy, 28, 3. Wells, Peter, 35, 4. James, Alden, 45, 5. Raas, Jean, 47.

Mistal Women: 1. Butler, Lanee, 12, 2. Reid, Cara, 32, 3. Birkenfeld, Kimberly, 35, 4. Devesa, Mariel, 36, 5. Powell, Beth, 58.

Complete results:

Curmudgeon's comment: Congratulations to all of our Olympians, with special congratulations to JJ Isler and Pease Glaser. It's hard to believe that 13 months ago JJ was pregnant, expecting the birth of her second child. This was certainly an "interesting" year for her . . .

THE REST OF THE STORY -- Morgan Larson
Over the last 9 days Kevin (Hall) and I have poured every ounce of blood, sweat and tears into sailing our 49er against America's best. Today we entered the final four of 22 races with a 5-point deficit behind The McKee brothers from Seattle. These two have been our nemesis throughout the last three years of racing. Our goal was to match race them hard at the start, either trying to draw a foul or make sure they had a bad start.

In race one we luffed them with 20 seconds to start, they fell behind and we were off to a good start. We rounded the first mark in 2nd with the McKee's in 4th. With some great down wind sailing (in the rough 18 knots of wind) we took the lead and finished 1st. The McKee's made their way to 2nd. Now 3 races to go and 4 points behind we still had our work to do.

Race #2 we forced them into a tight pack of boats after some dueling at the start. Coming into Mark 1 they tacked in front of us and we crashed into them! Now they had to do a 360 degree turn, a tough task in a 49er in these conditions. We took another win and again the McKee's battled from 6th back to 2nd.

Now two races to go and 3 points to make up. It wasn't looking like we would get any help from the fleet as the McKee's were able to always battle back to a 2nd. We decided to get more aggressive! With 2 minutes to go we pinned the McKee's away from the line and well to leeward. At the gun we broke away and fled to the right with the McKee's well behind. This looked to be our chance as the course was shorter giving us a better opportunity for someone to hang on behind us helping us gain points on the leader.

Now the wind starts to get very unstable with puffs of 18 knots and lulls of 5 knots. We got stuck in a light spot and watched them sail around us and into the lead. If they beat us in this race the regatta was over (due to the amount of throwouts). This is where the experience and great sailing by Jonathan and Charlie McKee showed. They sailed away from us to never look back and now are on their way to Sydney for the 2000 Olympic Games.

After three great years of sailing together Kevin Hall and myself can only look back at the memories, people we met, and the great places we have been. This has been by far the best sailing of my life and I will never forget it. There were many highs and lows that we went through together and Kevin always helped me learn from every experience and I am very lucky to have sailed with him. Now we both are headed to Auckland, NZ to sail with the AmericaOne team and help bring the Cup back to San Francisco.

We will now focus our efforts on making sure our teammates and great friends, Jonathan and Charlie McKee go on to win a Gold Medal for the United States. We will most likely train and race with them in the spring in Mexico and Europe and back in the US. Congratulations on an amazing series boys!

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* The decision of the Louis Vuitton Cup Jury to delay racing for three days affects each challenging syndicate differently. Although the unexpected days off are a respite from the rigours of racing, the break cuts into the time between Round Robins One and Two. And, as challengers are not allowed to make changes to their boats until the final race in each series has been sailed, the new schedule greatly reduces the work a team can put into improving it's boat. The greatest disadvantage will be to campaigns with only one boat.

Team Dennis Conner is a one boat campaign that doesn't find the break offensive. The team says the delay won't affect any changes they had planned for Stars & Stripes. But Dawn Riley's America True syndicate is disappointed. They see the break as cutting into their boat development time before Round Robin Two and on Sunday, America True filed a protest but refused to comment on its details.

AmericaOne, the ones who suggested a three-day break to the jury, are busy using this assigned time to rebuild the stern of their boat.

For Spain, the break is an opportunity to fix damage sustained in a collision with Nippon. The team has estimated it will take 50-60 hours of work to repair Bravo Espana. But this is another team that will suffer as the new schedule cuts into time between Rounds. 'We're disappointed for sure. We were planning some changes, but I can't say how much we want to do.'

Perhaps the happiest team is the Swiss FAST 2000 challenge. Be Happy suffered massive damage when the backstay runner separated from the support bulkhead. Constantin Capsis, speaking for the team said the Swiss will take all the time necessary to repair their boat, even if it means not racing on Wednesday. 'The most important thing is to fix the boat perfectly, and then to worry about the racing. We don't want it to break again, and the races are only worth one point just now.'

But some teams are definitely unhappy with the situation. Young Australia for example, doesn't have the budget for a big shore crew to do work on their 1995 vintage cup boat. The sailing crew is also the maintenance team. Coach Rob Brown said the team's pretty disappointed. 'We had planned to do some work before the next Round Robin, and wanted the full two weeks to make some changes. We'll still go at it, but it's really going to be hard now. I'd wanted to give the guys some time off, but it looks like it's going to be a real grind.'

The French syndicate, Le Defi, is also upset. They had planned extensive surgery to their boat's hull as well as a complete keel and bulb change. All of this takes time and then the boat has to be remeasured. Losing at least three days out of the 12 between these two rounds will affect their programme more than most. - Peter Rusch, Louis Vuitton website,

* The International Jury stood firm today on two counts. It disallowed America True's request to reconsider the postponement to the schedule and it also deducted a half-point from Team Dennis Conner. Both rulings confirm precedents established in rulings made late Saturday night.

The jury initiated a protest against Team Dennis Conner after hearing AmericaOne's request for redress on Saturday night. In their match earlier that afternoon, Stars & Stripes collided with AmericaOne's transom while jousting for control in the pre-start. Stars & Stripes was penalised by the on-the-water umpires for the infraction that ultimately led to a three-day delay to the racing schedule while AmericaOne was repaired.

Team Dennis Conner didn't agree with the jury's action. "We felt a little blindsided," said Bill Trenkle, the port trimmer aboard Stars & Stripes. "The jury usually doesn't protest unless there's new light shed in a protest hearing."

Chief Umpire Bryan Willis disagreed with that sentiment. "Almost every time in a protest hearing or request hearing where there is serious damage discovered, the jury would take action. It happens all the time," he said. -- Sean McNeill, Quokka Sports,

* The (Louis Vuitton Series) protective mindset was first revealed in the upper limit wind strengths established for the challenger regatta. Races will not commence if the wind blows more than 18 knots for a sustained five minutes during the 15 minutes before a start. Racing will be abandoned if the wind exceeds 23 knots for five minutes after the start.

The America's Cup Match has no such declared upper wind limits. The decision to race or not will be made on a judgement of safety, not an arbitrary wind strength. There is a distinct possibility that racing in the Match will start and continue in considerably higher wind ranges than the Louis Vuitton Cup. Statements from Team New Zealand have strengthened that impression. Just last week, Team New Zealand tactician Brad Butterworth said anything between 20 and 30 knots seemed just fine.

There was talk early on that syndicates would have to design two distinctly different yachts, one for the heavy airs of spring and another for the light airs of summer (as if Auckland's weather could be reliably pre-packaged in such terms). This was intimidating for syndicates with no hope of building two boats so the narrower wind range made sense because it gave the one-boat teams a realistic option of being competitive. It also made sense, if one followed the argument that the summer winds are more likely to be down in those ranges anyway. But, based on the high winds of the last two summers, any such assumption is a huge gamble. -- Ivor Wilkins, Quokka Sports,

* The two teams suffering the slows are European neighbors, France and Switzerland. The French arrived with a strikingly narrow boat. With friendly candor, skipper Bertrand Pace has revealed they have already ordered a new keel and are planning to lengthen the boat between rounds. By how much? "A lot."

Slow as the French are, their landlocked Swiss neighbors are slower. Aerial photographs have clearly shown a complicated underwater arrangement with two struts, both supporting large bulbs. The forward strut is well forward, between the keel and the forestay, while the aft strut is well back, close to where a conventional rudder would be. Apparently, both struts rotate to steer the boat. In light airs, the performance has been dismal and the boat has lost every match, some of them by depressing margins of up to 17 minutes. When the breeze freshened above 10 knots, however, it was more promising. It appears difficult to sail and at times-German helmsman Jochen Schumann takes one wheel, while French skipper Marc Pajot takes the other.

If they didn't know it already, all the teams are quickly learning that Auckland is a fickle and tricky place to sail. Serious shifts in wind direction (up to 40 degrees on the first day) and strength pose significant challenges. -- Ivor Wilkins, Grand Prix Sailor,

America's Cup Standings: 1. Prada Challenge, 8 points, 2. America One, 7, 2. Young America, 7, 4. America True, 5, 5. Nippon Challenge, 3.5, 5. Spanish Challenge, 4, 5. Abracadabra, 4, 8. Team Dennis Conner, 2.5, 9. Le Defi BTT, 2, 10. Young Australia, 1, 11. Fast 2000, 0,

Who was the relief helmsman for Bus Mosbacker Jr.. successful Americas Cup defense in 1962 on "Weatherly" over "Gretel" and in 1967 with "Intrepid" over "Dame Pattie"?
A Arthur Knapp
B George O'Day
C Robert W. McCallough
D Bob Bavier

Answer at the end of this issue of Scuttlebutt.

Letters selected to be printed are routinely edited for clarity, space (250 words max) or to exclude personal attacks.

-- From Tom Pollack -- Hunting should only be allowed in small light weight boats made of plastic (like Sea Kayaks) that do not go more than 4 knots. That way if either party screws up, no one gets seriously hurt. I know when I am going 22 knots upwind in my Trifoiler on starboard tack, the last thing on my mind is to hunt another Trifoiler on port tack. As each Trifoiler bears off in the hunting game, closing speeds accelerate to over 70 knots if we go head to head. Forget about the protest room, someone's going to a funeral parlor.

Obviously not everyone sails a high performance multihull, but the point here is that the Hunting rule is dangerous to most Fleet Racing sailors who aren't thinking 10 steps ahead of the game like the average Butthead Reader. Bob Burns seems to believe that hunting will discourage port tackers, but what happens when starboard tackers hunt a little to aggressively and bury their bow pulpits into the port boats chainplates as he tries to get out of the way. A lot of the newer boats (Farr 40's, ID 35, ) pick up a lot of steam when they bear of from closehauled, unlike the Cal 20's slugs of 30 years ago. For general Fleet racing purposes, hunting should be disallowed. Huntings proper venue is in the Olympic Classes, Professional Match Racing, Collegiate Team Racing and America's Cup, not fleet racing. Besides when was the last time

-- From Cole Price -- Just because you can hunt doesn't mean that it's open season. Check out rule 14. If there is a collision resulting in damage (damage is almost unavoidable on a port/starboard T-Bone) and the starboard boat didn't act to avoid contact, he/she is DSQ. The punch line is that the port tack boat can do a 720 (or 360 if modified by the race instructions) to absolve itself. Lets not change the racing rules, thereby adding subjectivity and obscurity. The starboard tack boat has rights, requiring the port tack boat to keep clear (rule 10). It doesn't get any more simple, or clear than that.

-- From Alan Capellin -- Greg Fisher hit the nail on the head. Carol is "the best" crew and deserves the recognition. She has got my vote.

Curmudgeon's comment. At this point, US Sailing is not looking for votes -- they want their members to nominate suitable candidates. From those nominations, a short list of suitable candidates is prepared. The voting to determine who will get the Rolex watches is NOT done by the members -- it's limited to an unidentified group of esteemed yachting journalists.

-- From Peter Huston -- I used to really enjoy attending USYRU/US SAILING meetings. It was always such an inspiration to meet and discuss the sport of sailboat racing with really bright, inspired minds. I sat on numerous committees, and learned a great deal about sailing, the sport and life from this experience. But over time the meetings became less about racing sailboats and more about stuff that just didn't appeal to me. I gave up my committees chairs.

As this week is the AGM, the past few weeks I have been getting the usual barage of pre-meeting information. There is a recurring theme in all of it - Training. It seems that it must now be a requirement of all committee chairs to start their reports with Training.

-- "Inshore Trained 1,273 people this year how to stay ashore because racing is boring if you have a 3 mile sail to the starting line".

-- "Offshore Trained 274 rich guys how to really waste money TRAINING themselves to spend a gob of money racing at a really high level of competition before they knew how to sail"

The "new" Mission statement had all this emphasis on training. We are the best trainers for sailing. We train everything and everyone in the sport.

OK, so forget the "new" Mission statement, and trying to squeeze the notion that US SAILING's prime objective is to train the world to sail. Just change the name of the organization to US TRAINING.

-- From Mike Lawrence -- As a rigger, I am very curious what kind of snap shackles accidentally opened on both the Japanese and Italian AC boats, injuring the point man on the Japanese boat.

Curmudgeon's comment: Young America also had one open up on the sheet of the asymmetrical kite. It undoubtedly cost them the race against Prada, but I sure don't know what kind they were using. Anyone?

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October 24, 1999 - Annapolis, MD. -- The final day of racing for the Lewmar Mumm 30 Cup, North American Championship was a crystal clear, cool, breezy day on the Chesapeake Bay. An 18-22 knot northeasterly breeze blew across flat water for the last five-leg windward/leeward race. Phil Garland and Richard Shulman's Trouble was in the lead, with Mike Dressell's 'USA 65' 14 points behind. The committee boat end of the line was favored, and Trouble decided to go for a conservative start at the boat end just a little behind the line. As Garland recounted later, about 10 other boats had the same idea and started in front of him.

The Trouble crew was a little worried when they saw USA 65 lead around the first mark, and they rounded in 15th. A big right shift on the first run helped Mike Lathrope's Twisted Lizard from Chicago and Blurr move into first and second place respectively, which they held to the finish. USA 65 dropped back in the fleet to sixth, but worked their way back into third by the finish, "by tacking a lot up the last beat, just playing the shifts," according to Dressell.

Garland's crew had their work cut out for them after their slow start, but they managed to close the gap between the competition to hold on to their lead for the series. -- Renee Mehl

Final Results: 1. Trouble, Garland/Shulman 23 2. USA 65, Dressell, 30, 3. Surprise, Irish, 45, 4. Blurr, Clarkson, 47 5. Turbo Duck, von der Wense, 56.

Full results:

Results will be posted daily at

George O'Day was the relief helmsman for Bus Mosbacker Jr.

Talk is cheap . . . because the supply exceeds demand.