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SCUTTLEBUTT 1235 - January 8, 2003

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digest of major yacht racing news, commentary, opinions, features and dock
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always welcome, but save your bashing and personal attacks for elsewhere.

HULA
Lawyers for one of the America's Cup syndicates were last night looking
hard at the radical new hull design unveiled by Team New Zealand and may
question its legality. Both teams in the challenger finals, Oracle BMW of
the United States and Alinghi of Switzerland, have until 3pm today to lodge
protests with the international jury or the America's Cup Arbitration
Panel. Alinghi said yesterday that they would not lodge a protest yet, but
Oracle rules adviser Tom Ehman told the Herald their staff would continue
reviewing the rules overnight.

When it was revealed yesterday, Team New Zealand's spectacular design was
immediately dubbed the most innovative leap forward for America's Cup
yachts for decades. To gasps from the public, the two black boats were
lifted from the water outside Team NZ's Viaduct Harbour base and their
protective skirts dropped for the first time. Immediately obvious were two
faint outlines towards the stern of both hulls - identifying the false hull
appendage dubbed the New Zealand "hula".

But not all those watching were impressed, and Oracle's legal team were
considering whether questions should be asked by this afternoon's first
deadline about whether the radical appendage meets the rules. The appendage
fits snugly against the hull but must not touch it apart from where it is
attached. The aim of the appendage is to increase the boat's waterline
length and therefore improve its speed. If Team New Zealand had increased
the actual hull's length, it would have come at a cost, perhaps in terms of
reduced sail area.

Whoever wins the Louis Vuitton Cup and the right to challenge Team New
Zealand for the America's Cup could still lodge a protest during an actual
race if they are not convinced the appendage is operating legally. - Julie
Ash and Helen Tunnah, NZ Herald, full story:
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/americascup/acstorydisplay.cfm?storyID=3050373&thesection=sport&thesubsection=americascup&thesecondsubsection=general

QUESTIONS
Alinghi have already submitted questions to the jury about the legality of
the New Zealand innovation ahead of the cut-off for design or measurement
protests. They believe that a gap of just a few millimetres between the
hull proper and the suspended second skin cannot be maintained "while
racing, particularly during pre-start manoeuvring and in moderate to strong
wind speeds and rough sea conditions when the hull is deformed by the rig
loads and the hull and appendages are exposed to high water pressure loadings".

Alinghi contend that if the two parts touch at any time, then the boat is
illegal. Team New Zealand, however, are certain that the 'Hula' - the name
that they have dubbed the hull-appendage - only makes contact with the hull
by its permitted centre-line attachments.

"We had to undergo a very rigorous process with the measurers," said TNZ
head and design leader Tom Schnackenberg. "They laid down stipulations and
their demands were quite stringent. We have made sure the Hula does not
touch the hull at any time." - Tim Jeffery, The Daily Telegraph, full
story:
http://sport.telegraph.co.uk/sport/main.jhtml;$sessionid$QKZNHMAFUDCXDQFIQMGCFFOAVCBQUIV0?xml=/sport/2003/01/08/soyotz08.xml&sSheet=/sport/2003/01/08/ixothspt.html

IMAGES
More good pictures of TNZ's 'hula' have been posted;
* Louis Vuitton Cup website:
http://www.louisvuittoncup.yahoo.com/story1614.html
* Hauraki News website. (go the 'Latest Pics' section and scroll down):
http://www.hauraki-news.com/LatestNews/LatestNews.htm
* Also, Daniel Forster has sent us two incredible photos of hula and we
are now attempting to post them on the Scuttlebutt website:
www.sailingscuttlebutt.com

QUOTE / UNQUOTE
"The hula - that's the name now, is it? Is that because it's a dance around
the rules or something?" - Bruce Farr, from the above story by Julie Ash
and Helen Tunnah in the NZ Herald

TOTAL COMMITMENT
Since news broke that Team New Zealand had come up with an innovative
method of overcoming the rule against hollows in the hull by attaching a
bustle under the stern, the unveiling ceremony has been awaited with keen
anticipation. Many observers believed the Defender would hedge its bets by
having one yacht built on conventional lines and one with the appendage.
But, as the two black yachts were lifted out of the water in front of a
large crowd of media and spectators, both were sporting the appendages.

* Tom Schnackenberg, Team New Zealand syndicate head and co-ordinator of
the design team, said the team had satisfied all the requirements of the
Measurement Committee and both yachts had been issued with Measurement
Certificates. A Measurement Certificate denotes that the yacht complies in
every respect with the rules of the regatta and is fit to race. All the
appendages on the two Team New Zealand yachts carried the signature of the
Measurer.

"We had to undergo a very rigorous process with the Measurers," said
Schnackenberg. "They laid down stipulations that (outside the permitted
attachment zone) the appendage may not touch the hull during racing. Their
demands were quite stringent. We have made sure the Hula does not touch the
hull at any time. They would not have given us a certificate unless we
could prove that." - Ivor Wilkins, Louis Vuitton website, full story:
http://www.louisvuittoncup.yahoo.com/story1608.html

TNZ EXPLAINS
Team New Zealand's hula was an idea born more than two years ago. The
innovative hull appendage, unveiled on both of the 2003-generation black
boats, was a concept suggested by Team New Zealand principal designer Clay
Oliver. It was just one idea on a long list to be considered. But over the
past 18 months it has been rigorously tested and refined by the Team New
Zealand design team, before being examined and certified by the America's
Cup measurers.

Oliver says the idea of the hull appendage which "makes the boat seem
longer to the water" came when trying to figure out a way to create a lower
transom. "I was trying to draw a boat for another project - a light
displacement yacht to break offshore world records. So I'd do that for a
couple of hours then go back to drawing an America's Cup boat," he said. "I
was going back and forth between the two projects, and suddenly I thought,
wouldn't it be nice if you could get a transom down as low as possible?
What would that boat look like?

"The solution to that problem was to draw the boat like you wanted, then
solve the problem of not being allowed to have hollows. "I picked up the
rule and started studying it hard, reading it over and over. It says that
20 percent of the volume of the boat can be appendages, and that's where
the idea came from. With an appendage, you can integrate the shape you want
and lower the transom."

* The design team are quick to stress that the appendage, code name hula,
is not a clip-on, a false bottom or a second skin. "It's not a separate
part. We drew the boat as we envisioned it, with a low transom and the
underwater sectional area distribution that we wanted, and then decided
where to cut an appendage," Oliver said.

The hula, rigid and strong and made from a structural component Team New
Zealand has worked on, is shaped as part of the hull. It only touches the
hull where it is allowed to - within a 500mm strip down the centreline. -
TNZ website, full story:
http://xtramsn.co.nz/teamnewzealand/0,,7136-2060241,00.html

SAMSON ON DISPLAY AT KEY WEST RACE WEEK
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http://www.samsonrope.com/home/recmarine/index.cfm

TRADEOFFS
The penalties Team New Zealand pays for it's 'hula' are the gaps around the
appendage where water does flow through, creating friction drag, as well as
additional weight. The design team mentioned that while in heavy air the
boats may lack a bit of stability due to the appendage, ultimately, the
combination provides the package for upwind and downwind, light and heavy
air. - Michelle Slade, Cup Views website, full story: http://cupviews.com/


LETTERS TO THE CURMUDGEON (editor@sailingscuttlebutt.com)
(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 Tom Fischbeck: Seems to me that the Around Alone yachts and
Whitbread craft as well, could use a secondary "Whisbone Boom" for their
rig. A boom that's butt end is well above the Primary working boom. Booms
and boom vangs seems to fail under these tremendous loads during "offwind"
legs. I know weight would be an issue, but the benefits would be 1.
Additional boom strength 2. Take a huge load off the boom vang, 3. Help
contain (lazy jack) the mainsail during major reefs.

* From Chris Welsh (re TNZ's 'hula'): I liked the comment best by TNZ
that they expect no problems with protests later - the obvious protest is
going to be when the first wear or scuff mark shows up on the hull from the
edge of the "Hula" - and then we are going to see a raging argument over
what constitutes contact and attachment outside of the defined attachment
area. If there are only millimeters of separation, given hydrodynamic
forces I suspect a protest is a given.

* From Dave Beck (edited to our 250-word limit): It looks to me like the
challengers are set to be hosed again by TNZ. Very simply, the "Hula
clip-on" offers such a massive advantage in allowing the Kiwi designers to
step outside the limits of the AC rule in terms of manipulating length,
displacement, LCB and prismatic coefficient, that its hard to see how the
challengers can match it in the time they have.

I have huge respect for Ken McAlpine, but remain dumbfounded that he let
the device pass as it seems so completely outside any intent of the IACC
rule or the definition of appendages. It's well and good to say that one
only interprets the rule, not its intent, despite the fact that the intent
is abundantly clear, and that he is allowing the exploitation of the most
obvious of loopholes. Hats off to the Kiwi's for asking the question and
getting the answer they wanted, when everyone else logically assumed the
idea was a non-starter under the rule.

The Kiwi's keel/bulb designs extend the direction they headed last time and
borrows from model boat technology, going for max stability, minimum wave
drag at the cost of wetted surface and maneuverability. If there is a
silver lining for the challenger, it's that the Kiwi boats seem to be
optimized for perhaps the upper wind ranges. If it's a windy series, it's over.

Tellingly, Laurie Davidson likes the look of the Kiwi boats much better
than Oracle or Alinghi. I hope Davidson and I are wrong.

* From Gregory Scott: Well the girls all had to flip up their skirts and
what is to be seen is very interesting. No fat bottoms but very elegant
lines on NZ and three different approaches to the bulbs. Long and slender,
big and pudgy and somewhere in the middle. The chord length of the blades
is very thin. So keeping with the reference from above; three slim and
slender waist lines, one curvy bottom and two hip huggers, three sets of
long lanky legs and three very different shoe sizes. Just like a Prada
fashion show.

ATHLETES OF THE YEAR AWARDS
The Olympic Sailing Committee of US Sailing, has recognized five athletes
as the sport's U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) Athletes of the Year.
Recognized in the Team category are Yngling sailors Betsy Alison (Newport,
R.I.), Lee Icyda (Stuart, Fla.) and Suzy Leech (Avon, Conn./Annapolis,
Md.). Laser sailor Andrew Campbell (San Diego, Calif.) and Laser Radial
sailor Paige Railey (Clearwater, Fla.) are Male and Female Athlete of the
Year, respectively. These sailors will be considered for the overall USOC
Team of the Year, Male Athlete of the Year and Female Athlete of the Year
Awards. The USOC award winners will be selected from the Athletes of the
Year recognized by each Olympic sport's national governing body.

The Yngling team of Betsy Alison, Lee Icyda and Suzy Leech were recognized
for winning the women's bronze medal at the 2002 Yngling World Championship
in Switzerland. Enhancing the significance of the medal win was that their
performance secured the USA its berth to the 2004 Olympic Regatta where the
Yngling will make its debut as the women's keelboat event.

Andrew Campbell started the new year by finishing second in the 63-boat
Laser fleet at the 2002 Rolex Miami OCR, a result which earned him the
number one ranking in that class on the 2002 US Sailing Team. Early in the
summer he won his third consecutive U.S. Youth Championship which put the
18-year old Campbell into the history books as the only sailor to earn the
coveted U.S. singlehanded championship crown three times. That win
qualified him to compete in the 2002 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World
Championships where he sat out the final race of the series after
mathematically securing the singlehanded championship title. Sailing in the
24-boat Laser fleet, Campbell was at or near the top of the leader board
from the first day of the event, winning the gold medal and his first world
championship title by 14 points over his closest competitor.

In July, sailing in a fleet of 20 Bytes, Paige Railey won the bronze medal
at the 2002 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championships. She then went on
to successfully defend her U.S. Junior Women's Singlehanded Championship
title in August. Sailing in Laser Radials, 55 competitors contested eight
races seven of which were won by Railey. She beat her closest competitor
by 27 points to win the title and earned the bonus of a repeat trip as the
U.S. representative to the youth world championship scheduled for July
18-27, 2003, in Portugal - Jan Harley, www.ussailing.org

SAILMAKER OF CHOICE FOR 2003
From our worldwide family of Ullman Sails sailmakers to all Scuttlebutt
readers, we wish you a Safe and Happy New Year, filled with success both on
and off the water. Ullman Sails proven designs, sailcloth selection,
construction and service are second to none. We congratulate those who used
Ullman Sails to win and finish well in the various regattas and
championship events during 2002. Let Ullman Sails be your sailmaker of
choice, and help you achieve your 2003 goals in One Design and Offshore
competition, and in the Cruising venues, wherever you sail. Sail Loft
locations available at: http://www.ullmansails.com

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP?
There is no overall world championship of sailboat racing, but Terra Nova
Trading Key West 2003 may come close in its 16th running Jan. 20-24. With
47 of the 287 entries from a record-matching 20 foreign countries, event
director Peter Craig has been able to organize a powerful fleet of 10
international teams to compete for the Key West Trophy. Each of a team's
three designated boats will race in its own one-design class as well as
participating in cumulative scoring for the trophy.

The three types of boats are Farr 40, Mumm 30 and Melges 24. The format,
now in its seventh year, is similar to what the Admiral's Cup was when it
was recognized as the "unofficial championship of offshore sailing." Key
West is inshore, but each of the three types of boats, some with partly
professional crews, is deeply international and highly competitive in its
own right.

Bob Hughes' Farr 40, Heartbreaker, from Holland, Mich., is returning to
lead the USA Great Lakes team in defense of the title it wrested from the
three-year grip of Italy. Teammates will be Jeff Dieman's Mumm 30, X-Press
Cartel, from Chicago, and Brian Porter's Melges 24, Full Throttle, Lake
Geneva, Wis.

Competition will include the new Farr 40 world champion, Steve Phillips of
Annapolis, Md., sailing Le Renard for the USA Chesapeake team, and Italy's
Flavio Favini, who won the delayed 2001 Melges 24 world title at Key West
last year, driving Franco Rossini's Blu Moon as a member of the German
team.That trio also features Wolfgang Schaefer, with his Farr 40, Struntje
light, and Bent Dietrich's Mumm 30, Rainbow.

Other teams will represent Australia, Europe A and B, The Netherlands,
Canada and a third US team - Team Northeast. The complete lineup and all
individual entries are posted at www.Premiere-Racing.com

The Farr 40s also will have their own intramural dogfight as some of the
world's best sailors match tactical wits for owners who must drive. Gavin
Brady, Vince Brun, Terry Hutchinson and Jesper Bank are among those fresh
from the America's Cup, along with Paul Cayard, who was compelled to sit it
out under contract to Larry Ellison's Oracle team, and new Star world
champion Iain Percy, on Struntje light. The tacticians also are listed on
the Web site. - Rich Roberts

AROUND ALONE
Bernard Stamm is not a man prone to exaggeration, however his email just
received sums up how things are on board. "It's hell out here," was all he
wrote. The gale force winds that have been lashing him since he rounded
Cape Reinga are forecast to abate slightly overnight and swing to the
northeast. With that in mind we are still forecasting an ETA of Thursday
morning 0700 local time. - Brian Hancock

STANDINGS 2200 UTC January 7 CLASS 1: 1. Bobst Group-Armor Lux, Bernard
Stamm, 183 miles from finish; 2. Solidaires, Thierry Dubois, 423 miles
behind leader; 3. Hexagon, Graham Dalton, 737 mbl, 4. Tiscali, Simone
Bianchetti, 756 mbl; 5. Pindar, Emma Richards, 999 mbl; 6. Ocean Planet,
Bruce Schwab, 1193 mbl.

CLASS 2: 1. Tommy Hilfiger, Brad Van Liew, 1383 miles from finish; 2.
Everest Horizontal, Tim Kent, 710 mbl. 3. Spirit of Canada, Derek Hatfield,
945 mbl; 4. Spirit of yukoh, Kojiro Shiraishi, 1089 mbl, BTC Velocity, Alan
Paris, 1700 mbl. - www.aroundalone.com

ETCHELLS SOUTH ATLANTIC CHAMPIONSHIP
Biscayne Bay YC, Florida - Final results (49 boats) 1. Swedish Blue, Ante
Razmilovic, 23; 2. Baby Doll, Yandell Rogers, 27; 3. Twelve Twenty -One,
Jud Smith/ Henry Frazer, 29; 4 As Easy As, Robbie Doyle, 33; 5. Pipe Dream
12, Scott Piper, 36. - http://www.etchellsfleet20.org/racing/results.htm

STERN SCOOP
A sigh of relief tonight in Auckland as the 3 PM deadline for any technical
protests (measurement, construction, nationality, etc.) passed with none
filed by any of the remaining teams. However, rumours persist of possible
future challenges to the TNZ "hula" false-hull appendage. On Monday Alinghi
filed a list of questions with the jury about enforcement of the
measurement committee's ruling that TNZ must assure the measurers that the
appendage cannot touch the hull at any time, including while racing in
rough conditions and tight turns during pre-start manuevering.

THE CURMUDGEON'S OBSERVATIONS
It hurts to be on the cutting edge.