SCUTTLEBUTT 1245 - January 22, 2003
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Athens banker George Andreadis has won the Farr 40 class three consecutive
years and event Boat of the Week the last two years, and Tuesday he sailed
Atalanti XII into first place at the Terra Nova Trading Key West 2003 after
two days of the five-day event. Atalanti XII, with first- and second-place
finishes following Monday's 11th and third, has as commanding a lead as
that rough-and-tumble class allows with 17 points to 26 for Crocodile Rock,
the Scott Harris/ Alexandra Geremia entry from Santa Barbara, Calif. that
led after day one.
Atalanti XII, with Robbie Haines on tactics, edged Jim Richardson's Barking
Mad (Gavin Brady) for its win Tuesday as the boats finished at opposite
ends of the line. Then Andreadis chased home Vincenzo Onorato's Italian
entry, Breeze (Adrian Stead). The Farr 40s' Division 1 course, where the
1D35s and Mumm 30s also are sailing, is the only one of four courses with
no throwouts - the others will discard their worst finish after seven races.
Another defending champion, Richard Perini from Sydney, Australia, rose to
the top with a 4-1 day. Perini's Mumm 30, Foreign Affair, sits one point
ahead of Pierpaolo Cristofori's Printel Wind, the runner-up in the class
worlds. "In the first race, we got a good start and then had to give away
two boat lengths to avoid a crab pot that was trailing its line. It forced
us to tack off and lose some boats," Perini said. Those, along with subtle
currents and fickle wind shifts, are the challenges facing the 290 boats on
the inshore courses.
The event's largest fleet of 57 Melges 24s saw flashes of form when
Norway's Kristian Neergaard, sailing with world champion Harry Melges as
crew, and California's versatile Morgan Larson scored wins, although
overall they lie eighth and fifth, respectively.
Meanwhile, Bruce Ayres of Newport Beach, Calif. has put together two thirds
and two eighths to reach first place, three points ahead of defending
champion Flavio Favini, sailing Franco Rossini's Blu Moon from Switzerland.
Favini, incidentally, sailed on Onorato's America's Cup challenger,
In the International Team Competition for the Key West Trophy, the Italian
team of Onorato's Farr 40, Breeze; Cristofori's Mumm 30, Printel Wind, and
Maspero Giovanni's Melges 24, Joe Fly, has a two-point lead over the German
team composed of Struntje light, Blu Moon and Bent Dietrich's Mumm 30,
Rainbow. Italy won the trophy three years running until last year.
The event is scheduled for nine races, but wind prospects for Wednesday
were grim, although another cold front was expected to bring back more
breeze Thursday and Friday. - Rich Roberts, Complete results at
Swiss journalist Mathieu Truffer said interest in the cup in Switzerland
was rising after a long period in which the Swiss had shown only passing
interest in Alinghi. It was viewed as a private campaign, rather than the
national one promoted by Team New Zealand.
Truffer said the Swiss were not interested in the sailors - he doubted many
would be familiar with the names Coutts or Butterworth - but instead were
interested in the design of the boat, because it had been built in
Switzerland. "There will never be a victory parade in Geneva with thousands
of people cheering the cup. It will never happen." - Helen Tunnah and
Ainsley Thompson, NZ Herald,
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The team of Betsy Alison Lee Icyda and Suzy Leech won the Palm Beach Ocean
Regatta for the Yngling class - the first of three ranking events which
will determine the US Sailing Team for 2003. From here, the Yngling sailors
move down to Key Biscayne for the Miami Olympic Classes Regatta that starts
on Wednesday, January 29 and continues through Saturday, February 1. The
Pre-Trials will be held the following weekend of February 7-9. Both events
will be open to all US and foreign competitors. The top US finisher in the
Pre-Trials will qualify for the 2003 Test event in Athens this summer.
Final results: 1. Betsy Alison, 5, 2. Sally Barkow, 7, 3. Paula Lewin, 8,
4. Christiana Monina, 12, 5. Hannah Swett 13. - www.usa.yngling.org.
* From the NZ Herald: "We've tested it on SUI75 and it's definitely do-able
with it touching the hull, but then that's against the rules. We've got to
convince ourselves that we've got the shape right to add sailing length
without unacceptable drag, and that it remains rule-legal throughout the
series," said Russell Coutts.
Alinghi have already asked the official measurers and the international
jury for the America's Cup questions about how a team can know a hula stays
clear of the hull, and how this can be checked for compliance with the
rules. The measurers spent more than three months checking Team New
The New Zealanders have re-skirted their race boats, and neither team will
have to declare until February 11 what final shape their race boat will
take. - Helen Tunnah, full story:
* From The Telegraph: The Swiss team have tested the device extensively
on their second yacht, SUI 75, and have yet to decide whether to modify SUI
64, which Russell Coutts's crew took to a 29-4 record in the Louis Vuitton
trials and which will be used to race Team New Zealand, starting on Feb 15.
"We've had to change the whole back of the boat [SUI 75] to use it,"
(Alinghi design team coordinator, Grant) Simmer said. "We did that with
foam primarily and then attached the appendage to that because the
flotation changes. The extra volume causes the boat to float up and we
wanted to maintain our length. Yes, there is weight penalty, but only in
the region of 30kg. Given the potential gain of the hull shape change,
Team New Zealand have the advantage of having built their boats with the
Hula in mind from the outset. - Tim Jeffery, full story:
Circumnavigators Noel and Litara Barrott of Whangarei, New Zealand have
received The Cruising Club of America's (CCA) Blue Water Medal. The
Barrotts have completed two circumnavigations over a total of 137,000 miles
on two cruising yachts that were self-built. The Blue Water Medal was
inaugurated in 1923 to "reward meritorious seamanship and adventure upon
the sea, displayed by amateur sailors of all nationalities, that might
otherwise go unrecognized." Previous medalists include Francis Chichester,
Eric and Susan Hiscock, David Lewis, Carleton Mitchell, Bernard Moitessier,
Miles and Beryl Smeeton, Rod Stephens and Eric Tabarly. - Media Pro Int'l
The fight for second in the Class 2 overall rankings is being hotly
contested by American skipper Tim Kent on Open 50 Everest Horizontal and
Canadian Derek Hatfield on Open 40 Spirit of Canada. Both are on equal
points after the first 2 legs, and so whoever finishes after Class leader
Brad Van Liew on Tommy Hilfiger Freedom America into Tauranga, New Zealand,
will establish themselves in second place overall.
Tim Kent has rounded Cape Reinga, the northern tip of New Zealand, and is
now 105 miles ahead of Hatfield, but is living on a blackened boat thanks
to a faulty engine and dealing with ripped sails caused by faulty furling
gear. Meanwhile Canadian Derek Hatfield is turning the corner right on the
06:00hrs position report, characteristically pushing is Open 40 Spirit of
Canada as hard as he can - and still pumping thousands of gallons of water
out of his boat each day.
STANDINGS 2200 UTC January 21 CLASS 1: 1. Bobst Group-Armor Lux, Bernard
Stamm, 2. Solidaires, Thierry Dubois, 3. Hexagon, Graham Dalton, 4.
Tiscali, Simone Bianchetti, 5. Ocean Planet, Bruce Schwab, 6. Pindar, Emma
Richards, CLASS 2: 1. Tommy Hilfiger, Brad Van Liew, 2. Everest Horizontal,
Tim Kent, 116 dtf. 3. Spirit of Canada, Derek Hatfield, 190 dtf; 4. Spirit
of yukoh, Kojiro Shiraishi, 260 dtf, BTC Velocity, Alan Paris, 1258 dtf. -
Cal Karr has received the US Sailing Arthur B. Hanson Rescue Medal for
rescuing a Fred Ball on Lake Michigan. Ball was racing in the
Chicago-Mackinac Singlehanded Challenge Race, run by the Great Lakes
Singlehanded Society, on his 50-feet Newick trimaran named Lucretia. It was
55 degrees and a thunderstorm rolled in, bringing 50- knot winds and waves
of up to two feet. Ball ran the main and jib sheets to escape the storm,
but Lucretia's hull fractured and the boat capsized, trapping Ball
underneath the netting.
With the skin burned of the palms of his hands and a torn rotator cuff,
Ball managed to get away from the netting and climb on top the upturned
hull. He remained there overnight, wearing his orange Mustang survival
suit, and after 12 hours in the cold water, he finally saw the lights of
another boat coming his way.
Cal Karr was participating in the same race with his Island Packet 45 Belle
when he heard Fred Ball's screams for help. Karr immediately dropped his
sails and turned on his motor to get to the capsized boat, dropping out of
the race. Karr treated Ball's hands and hypothermia while heading straight
to Milwaukee. Marlieke de Lange Eaton, www.ussailing.org/safety/Rescues/
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CAPE TO RIO RACE
A sigh of relief swept through the fleet of the SAP Cape to Rio race when
the long-awaited trade winds traditional to the race finally came through.
Frustrations were running high for the past three days as most of the fleet
was experiencing virtually windless conditions and could only achieve small
distances. The superfast Swedes on board the trimaran Nicator clocked the
best distance of the day with a speedy 333.8 miles averaging 13.91 knots.
Their closest rival in the chase to get to Rio first, the Brazilian
catamaran Adrenalina Pura averaged 9.69 knots to cover 232.5 miles. -
Scuttlebutt has become a popular feature on many yacht club, sailing
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their site to update their programming code. If you have not yet updated
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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 Ted Beier: I agree with Larry Suter's assertion for the need of a
specific rule to govern luffing with an explicit curtailment provision
(Butt 1242). When the experimental rules were introduced at US Sailing as a
development for the current rules, it was stated that the goal was the
creation of simpler rules, which "did not change the game". If memory
serves me, they contained a luffing rule with a "bow even" curtailment
provision. It was asserted that this was simpler to judge than mast abeam,
to which most agreed. However, when the final rules came back from ISAF, no
luffing rule and no curtailment provision were to be found. No one with
knowledge of how this transpired has been willing to explain how this
happened, nor have been willing to acknowledge that the goal of not
changing the game was seriously breached.
Many sailors no longer engage in tactical luffing because they are fearful
the vague rules do not provide sufficient instruction, and more fearful
that jury or umpire interpretation may be more uncertain and different from
theirs. Just one example of this is the comparison of Cayard's drawing a
penalty from his response to Prada's luff in the last LVC vs Alinghi's not
receiving a penalty this time for almost identical actions.
The 1950s rule, could not have been much simpler, assuming my memory is not
too far off. "A leeward yacht may luff head-to-wind as she pleases until
the helmsman of the windward yacht becomes mast abream."
* From Nancy Samovar: What nonsense, this discussion about foul language!
And what condescending bull it is that men should feel the need to clean up
language because women are aboard racing with them. The hosts on OLN
mentioned the language issue but did not even apologize for it. Good for
them. We were not watching a Junior's sailing event.
* From Madeleine McJones: Obviously Chris Upton has never sailed with my
girly type! Granted Cal 40 racing in my youth required many salty terms
with extensive vocabulary. But, the most cursing I ever did was on an all
'ladies' race where the pit could not decide how to let the pole forward
and the driver aimed at the rocks. It gave me a great distaste for 'all
ladies' racing. Besides when the boat is really hauling (arse) I always
seem to curse! (ya-know that kinda good cursing?) Oh and do not place young
children behind me on fast a roller coaster for the same reason.
* From Wes Bray: Two quick questions: Why do skippers wait until late in
the race to do their penalty turns? As we've seen through these races, one
cannot plan on building and being able to hold a lead. In the final race,
Oracle had a 5 boat length lead in leg two and could have made their turn
without necessarily giving Alinghi an insurmountable lead. Knowing they had
good downwind boat speed and had been competitive upwind, why didn't they
take advantage of their lead to get the penalty monkee off their back and
be able to fight clean for the finish? Not to mention their decision not to
And second, why is it that now we have to wait 3+ weeks for the next races
to begin? Okay, time for races that didn't happen, and a week off for final
boat tweaks, but I still come up with an extra ten days or so. Me thinks it
takes some of the wind out of our collective sails, which is too bad since
this is the Super Bowl of Sailing and the best chance to attract
non-sailing folks to the sport.
* Bill Griffin: Does anyone remember the name "Paul Cayard". It would
have been interesting to see him sailing "Oracle" for the series, rather
than the musical chairs that we witnessed at the end. I hope Mr. Ellison
paid him a boatload to sit "on the beach".
* From Dieter Loibner: Comparing the America's Cup with sport events that
really matter in California these days, one has to bring up the Superbowl.
Looking at the teams, it promises to be a grudge match of Caribbean pirates
with the Raiders meeting the Buccaneers.
Of course, the Bucs are coached by the same guy who turned the Raiders from
doormat to contenders but left town for a fat paycheck. The game will be
held in San Diego where citizens are boarding up their houses so they won't
get sucked into the Black Hole ( as the notorious Raiders fans are referred
to), which will relocate from Oakland/LA to America's Finest City in the
next few days.
Because Auckland is not Oakland, it will see the more genteel version of
the drama with Russell Coutts and Brad Butterworth and their mates taking
on their former employers to contest the ewer they abducted from San Diego
as one team. The 64,000 dollar questions: will this maritime grudge match
spawn the Kiwi version of a Black Hole in Viaduct Basin? If it does, will
it be a Black Hole with red socks? And if the Kiwis win, will Dean Barker
and Tom Schnackenberg jump into the stands?
No matter what, be it in San Diego next Sunday or in Auckland in a few
weeks, the team wearing black is itching to stick it to their opponents.
And vice versa.
* From Phil Olbert: As Patrice Carpentier pointed out, the Volvo Around
the World will probably sometime in the future be sailed in multihulls.
However unlike Patrice I will hate to see it. I am one of those people, of
which there are many, that have a hard time thinking of a multihull as a
real boat. Multihull fiascos such as the last Route du Rhum only reinforce
this belief. Yes, racing multihulls are marginally faster than racing
monohulls. But speeds are, after all, relative and I find the speeds and
close racing of open 40's, 50's and 60's even more exciting than the
unseaman-like antics of racing multihulls. Sorry, but I really hope races
such as the Volvo Around will continue to be raced in monohulls.
THE CURMUDGEON'S OBSERVATIONS
Failure is not an option - it comes bundled with the software.