SCUTTLEBUTT 1216 - December 10, 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.
LOUIS VUITTON CUP SEMI FINALS
Drama marked the opening races of the Louis Vuitton Cup semi final in
Auckland today, with lead changes and broken equipment providing plenty of
excitement as the yachts raced in south westerly breezes of 16-20 knots.
As expected, the clash between Oracle BMW Racing (USA-76) and Alinghi
(SUI-64) provided a highly charged pre-start, full of action and
aggression. Peter Holmberg, steering USA-76, gained a slight advantage off
the line, but Russell Coutts at the helm of SUI-64 had the right hand side
and used it to advantage.
Soon after the start, the Swiss team gained the edge and then sailed a
classic match race, relentlessly covering and playing the windshifts to
slowly extend to a comfortable lead - ending the 11-race winning streak
enjoyed by USA-76 since Chris Dickson took over the skipper's role.
In the match between Luna Rossa (ITA-74) and OneWorld (USA-67), the Italian
yacht, skippered by Francesco de Angelis, gained the upper hand in the
start. But, a pattern soon emerged where OneWorld, helmed by James
Spithill, had better speed upwind and Prada had the pace downwind. The lead
changed five times during the race.
Prada's de Angelis drove hard downwind, working the boat down every wave
trying to gain every ounce of speed. Drama struck on the second downwind
leg when Prada luffed OneWorld and broke their spinnaker pole in the process.
OneWorld powered into the lead and extended up the third windward leg, only
to break its spinnaker on the final run. Prada closed up, but not enough to
threaten the American yacht. - Louis Vuitton Cup website, full story:
Alinghi defeated Oracle BMW Racing by 1 minute 11 seconds
OneWorld Challenge defeated Prada by 47 seconds
Alinghi leads Oracle BMW Racing 1-0
One World Challenge leads Prada 1-0*
* OneWorld will be penalized 1 point by the ACAP at the end of the
(Following is an excerpt from a story on the Cup Views website where Dennis
Conner's spoke about the ruling of the America's Cup Arbitration Panel in
the OneWorld matter.)
"There are too many rules. Maybe I'm just an old-timer and see things
different but we didn't have these rules in '71, '73 and so on. I remember
when you broke the rules you got thrown out. I don't know where it came
from if you get a penalty you get fined $65,000. Maybe it's time for me to
stop because I'm still living back in the old days."
Conner said that based on the facts found by the Panel he understood their
decision. But still, he felt the evidence presented by his team made for a
stronger case. "Based on the evidence that we presented, I felt that the
case was substantially much stronger than the Panel found otherwise I
wouldn't have proceeded," said Conner, " I did what I felt was right and
respect the decision of the Panel because I know they tried hard to do the
right thing but I can't help being a little disappointed in their decision
today." - Cup Views website, full story: http://cupviews.com/
Still hanging over OneWorld is a Rule 2 (Fair Sailing) protest before the
International Jury. Team Dennis Conner has applied to withdraw the protest.
International Jury Chairman Bryan Willis says the Jury will convene on
Tuesday evening to consider the withdrawal application. Other teams are
invited to make submissions to the Jury on this. - Peter Rusch, Louis
Vuitton Cup website, full story:
CURMUDGEON'S COMMENT: At our distribution time, nothing had been heard from
the jury about their decision in this matter.
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* With six months until the start of the DaimlerChrysler North Atlantic
Challenge, 35 entries have been confirmed by Norddeutscher Regatta Verein
(NRV) Hamburg and New York Yacht Club (NYYC). More than 100 international
yachts from classic gaff-rigged schooners to high-tech race-machines have
registered their interest to start the 3,500 nautical mile ocean race. The
regatta will depart from Newport, R.I., USA on June 14 for Cuxhaven,
Germany and on to Hamburg. The race will commemorate the 100th anniversary
of the German sailing club Hamburgischer Verein Seefahrt (HVS). - www.dcnac.de.
* A new beautiful 18" x 24" commemorative poster of the September 14 Sail
For America is now available with 60% of all sales going directly to the
Uniformed Firefighters Association. http://www.sailforamerica.com/
* Scuttlebutt readers can now get a 20% discount when they download
Virtual Spectator. Users of Windows 98/ ME/ 2000/XP can download a copy for
just $19.95 at:
The Scuttlebutt URL for Windows NT4 users is:
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 Rick Hatch: The America's Cup never ceases to come up with drama.
Good News: If One World wins the first race of the LVC semi's, then it
becomes a best of seven series again. The same applies to the subsequent
series, even the Cup match itself. Bad News: If any of the forthcoming
series go to eight races and One World loses 4-4, the other boat's
"victory" bell will surely have a shallow ring to it. Let's hope that each
remaining round of the LVC is decisive one way or the other.
CURMUDGEON'S COMMENT: That could happen. The way the penalty works is that
a point deducted from OneWorld in every round, but that point is not given
to its opponent. For example, in its Semi-Final match against Prada, the
Italian team still must win four races to advance. OneWorld would need to
win five races to advance. This could conceivably result in an eight race
* From John Greenland: I personally would describe OneWorld's penalty for
the remainder of the Louis Vuitton Cup and America's Cup as a joke. It's
incredible that such a penalty has been dealt out considering the
subjective nature of the rule in question.
I'm pretty confident that all designers involved with this event have
design information from teams they have worked with in the past. They might
not have a computer file, they might not have drawings, but at the end of
the day you can never ignore the knowledge stored in your brain!
I'm pretty confident that all those involved with the various syndicates
didn't start with a clean piece of paper. I'm also pretty sure that the
likes of Russell Coutts has a fairly good memory for the figures used with
Team New Zealand. Perhaps this is just an indication that the rules need to
be looked at?
* From Ken Guyer: One World "admits" to further breeches of the protocol,
but the panel says it is ok because One World admitted the fopah themselves
and stated they never used the information. So some fines and deduct a
point here and there. The end of it.
Now the America's Cup begins a new era. One in which talent and design
information goes to the highest bidder at the end of one Cup cycle.
Residency rules allow Australians to become Japanese, Kiwi's to become
Swiss, and so on. We have officially killed and buried the "competition
among nations" goal the originators of the deed of trust envisioned.
We now have a free for all in which the wealthy can create their own
version of a national team and utilize what was developed for someone else
to give their campaign a bit of a thrust forward. And IF they should be
unfortunate to have a disgruntled former team member bring into question
how they got to where they are, they simply admit to some wrong, and throw
themselves at the mercy of the arbitration panel and hope the wrist does
not hurt too much when all is done.
Changes must be made for the next Cup. First and foremost the need to
recognize a Kiwi is a Kiwi and an American is an American. At lest the
designers should not be allowed to move from nation to nation.
* From Brent Boyd: Where is the logic in assessing a one-point penalty to
OneWorld if they make it to the America's Cup? I can almost agree with the
one point disadvantage among the challengers if OneWorld had design
information that the other challenger teams didn't. If OneWorld had and
used New Zealand design information what advantage over TNZ would they have
if both teams had the same access?
* From Doug Holthaus: If I correctly understand Reevesgate I & II, the
Arbitrators twice rejected the accusers' evidence and submissions but
docked OneWorld four points based on its voluntary admissions. I wonder
what the Panel will do when other disgruntled competitors initiate
Reevesgate III, IV & V and OneWorld stays mum.
* From Paco Cauley: Attorney Bruce Vanderlaan might want to consider
investing some of your hard-earned dollars in a new sense of humour.
* From Geoff Moore: Mr. Shakespeare strikes a humorous cord when he
suggests the demise of all lawyers as a means to an end. In Henry the VI
part II Shakespeare was actually attributing virtuous power to lawyers in
an off handed way. Without lawyers anarchy, chaos, and tyranny might
prevail so if that is your objective then best to be rid of them. The
hilarious satirical humor was, and still is, especially poignant to the
perceived victims of lawyers without virtue. Like all professions there are
good lawyers and there are bad lawyers. I suspect the good ones recognize
the humor. I am a little concerned about the rest.
CURMUDGEON'S COMMENT: This seems like a good spot to declare this thread
FOR THE RECORD
The Fourteen crewmembers to race the 110ft maxi-catamaran Kingfisher2 for
the Jules Verne Trophy this winter were announced at the Paris Boat Show by
skipper Ellen MacArthur. The international team is drawn from six nations
and boasts 20 circumnavigations between them. The team is: Ellen MacArthur
- United Kingdom; Neal MacDonald - United Kingdom; Nick Moloney -Australia
; Benoit Briand -France; Bruno Dubois - Canada; Anthony Merringto -
Australia; Andrew Henderson - Australia; Damian Foxall - Ireland; Andrew
Preece - United Kingdom; Ronan Le Goff - France; Hervé Jan - France; Jason
Carrington -United Kingdom; Nigel King - United Kingdom; Guillermo Aitadill
- Spain; (Detailed crew biographies are available at
This will not be Ellen's first crewed race. In 2002 Ellen was part of two
winning teams firstly with Alain Gautier in the Challenge Mondial race,
and then again with victory on Kingfisher the monohull in the EDS Atlantic
Kingfisher2 will be based at French maritime town of Lorient on the Biscay
coast will be the team base for the work-up period, utilising the
facilities of Le Defi French America's Cup base. The project will move to a
port closer to the Jules Verne start line [set between the lighhouses at
Lizard Point in south-west England and Ushant on the north west tip of
France] in mid to late January 2003 [when ready] and await the green light
from the weather routers.
The boat is currently in Cherbourg, France, having her new 39-metre carbon
fibre mast - built by JMV Industries - fitted. The crew hopes to set off on
the shakedown sail to Lorient towards the end of next week.
THEY HAVE SAILED AROUND THE WORLD.
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WHO WILL GET THE ROLEX?
'Tis the season when we recognize our fellow sailors and supporters for
their outstanding contributions to our sport, pastime, livelihood and
lifestyle. Please take a few minutes and tell us about those you fell
deserve that special recognition.
* Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year. Due by 1/31/03.
* The National Sportsmanship Award, W. Van Alan Clark, Jr. Trophy. Due by
* Marty Luray Award. For outstanding contribution to community sailing. Due
* One-Design Service. The John F. Gardiner Jr. Trophy recognizes
distinguished service and leadership in the promotion of one-design sailing
and class organization. Due by 12/31/2002.
* One-Design Leadership. In recognition of individual initiative,
enthusiasm, organizing ability and leadership in creating the outstanding
fleet building program. Due by 12/31/2002.
* One-Design Club. To recognize administrative excellence, fleet growth,
creative programming, regatta support, member contribution -- at regional,
national and international levels -- of the one-design yacht club of the
year. Due by 12/31/2002.
* One-Design Regatta. To recognize excellence in development, promotion,
and management by organizers and sponsors of the year's outstanding
MULTI-CLASS REGIONAL regatta. Due by 12/31/2002.
* One-Design Creativity. To recognize outstanding individual creativity and
contribution to the year's most innovative one design event of national or
international significance. Due by 12/31/2002.
* Captain Joe Prosser Award for Excellence in Sailing Instruction. Due by
* Sail Training Service and Support Award. Due by 12/20/2002.
Visit the Awards web site for more information to access nomination forms
QUOTE / UNQUOTE
""The attitude of the sailors has been great. One of the guys put it very
well when he was leaving this morning. He said 'it's now like climbing
Mount Everest. They've just added another 5,000 feet (1,500 meters) to it
but I still know I can climb it'." - Bob Ratliffe, OneWorld Challenge,
"Life offers regrettably few opportunities to laugh at billionaires, so
it's a shame that so few Americans are following the America's Cup
preliminaries under way in New Zealand. At least three of the world's
richest men are about to be publicly humiliated in the waters off Auckland.
Such a delightful spectacle should not pass unnoticed." - This is the lead
paragraph in a story by Mark Lewis in Forbes, Forbes.com
Following the loss of their temporary jury-rudder overnight, the yacht F2
of Plymouth, a Hunter Legend 450 participating in the Atlantic Rally for
Cruisers has been abandoned by her two crew, Peter and Zara Davies. The
jury rudder had been fabricated at sea by the T/S Tenacious, following the
earlier loss of the yacht's rudder in big seas on Sunday 1st December.
The temporary replacement enabled the yacht to continue on towards
St.Lucia. However the jury rudder also failed, leaving the yacht without
steering. Although not in immediate danger, the yacht was taking on water.
The World Cruising Club was able to direct other yachts to the assistance
of F2. Monday morning, with yachts Lorrigray II, Muskrat and Toutazimut
standing by, Peter and Zara Davies, together with their German Shepherd dog
Ellie, began an ordered evacuation of the yacht, transferring to Lorrigray
II, a Dix 65 sailed by South African Graham Parkinson. - www.worldcruising.com
Another warm sunny day in Fremantle for races two and three for the Grolsch
International 505 Worlds. It blew overnight, and the morning offshore
breeze was very well established and quite strong. The Fremantle Doctor
never did fill in and both of today's races were sailed in a shifty, puffy
easterly. The wind range was probably something like 6 or 7 knots to 20
knots, and the shifts were probably 30 degrees. - Ali Meller
Results after three races (97 boats): 1 Ian Barker/ Daniel Cripps, GBR, 10;
2. Dan Thompson/ Andrew Zinn, USA, 13; 3. Krister Bergstrom/ Thomas Moss,
SWE, 15; 4. Howard Hamlin/ Mike Martin, USA, 16; 5. Chris Nicholson/ Darren
Nicholson, AUS; 6, Andrew Beeckman/ Ben Benjamin, USA. - www.505.com.au
Finishing order of the Cascais to Havana leg of the Clipper 2002 Race: 1.
New York, 2. Bristo, 3. Jersey, 4. Hong Kong, 5. Liverpool, 6. London, 7.
Glasgow, 8. Cape Town. Standings after two legs: 1. New York, 13 pts, 2.
Hong Kong, 12 pts, 3. Jersey, 12 pts, 4. Bristol, 11 pts. -
CALENDAR OF MAJOR EVENTS
* January 20-24: Terra Nova Trading Key West 2003, Premiere Racing.
Racing on four circles for PHRF, one-design and IMS classes of 24 to 85
feet LOA. PHRF entries must have a rating of 175 or lower. Early entry
THE CURMUDGEON'S OBSERVATIONS
Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing is like clearing the
driveway before it has stopped snowing