SCUTTLEBUTT 1268 - February 22, 2003
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NO WHITE CAPS - NO RACING
A strong high pressure system building over the north island of New Zealand
brought light winds to the race area on the Hauraki Gulf delaying Race Four
for a second time. Principal Race Officer Harold Bennett of the Royal New
Zealand Yacht Squadron issued a shore postponement holding the teams on the
dock while they waited for the wind to build. In the event, neither Alinghi
nor Team New Zealand left the Viaduct Basin as conditions didn't improve.
"The current weather conditions are unsuitable for racing and are not
expected to improve in time for a race this afternoon," Bennett said.
"After consulting with both weather teams the decision has been made to
postpone today's scheduled race until tomorrow. There's two knots out here
at the moment and the water is completely flat. We don't see anything
building later either."
Racing was called for the day at 12:25. Racing will continue on Sunday with
a scheduled start time of 13:15. A large area of high-pressure is forecast
to be positioned overhead the north island of New Zealand on Sunday, giving
a slack pressure gradient and clear skies. The forecast is for a light
north easterly sea breeze of seven to 10 knots developing in the afternoon
in the northern Hauraki Gulf. There is a chance of a south west sea breeze
developing later in the afternoon. - America's Cup website,
FACTOID: In 2000, four America's Cup race days were lost to light air on
the Hauraki Gulf. It took two weeks to complete the Kiwi's five race sweep
of the Prada syndicate.
The unexpected lay day left many disappointed spectators around the Viaduct
Harbour. In order to show their appreciation of the support some members of
Team New Zealand boarded their tender and drove around waving to the
spectator fleet and on-shore fans. For many supporters it was the closest
they have ever got to the New Zealand crew. They were greeted with a heroes
welcome, and must have gained a tremendous boost from the overwhelming
support. nzoom.com, full story:
BRAD BUTTERWORTH - INSISTS - ON KAENON POLARIZED
Lets face it. The Hauraki Gulf is tricky. This place can make or break a
career. Surrounded by land, it's shifty, streaky, puffy…velocity or angle?
Brad Butterworth just plain looks smart. He's spot on! He's also relying on
Kaenon Polarized for the optical advantage the winning breeze reader
requires. But Butterworth doesn't just rely on the revolutionary SR-91 lens
from Kaenon, he insisits on it. Advanced technology for the human element.
Kaenon Polarized. Evolve Optically. Available at TeamOne Newport, Sailing
Supply San Diego, West Marine, Solstice and Alain Mikli NYC, Paris.
THE NEXT CUP
While Team New Zealand and Alinghi from Switzerland battle it out on the
Hauraki Gulf for the Auld Mug, plans are already afoot for the next
America's Cup, wherever and whenever it might be. One of the first
syndicates to announce themselves as a challenger are K-Challenge, a French
syndicate to be based in Marseille.
The president of K-Yachting, a French yacht rental company which will head
the syndicate, Orwin Kandler told reporters they will proceed whether the
Cup stays in New Zealand or goes to Europe. "No it doesn't matter if it
stays here or goes to the moon. I couldn't care less," said Kandler. They
refused to say which yacht club they will be sailing for, except to say it
is one of the oldest and most famous clubs in Paris. French journalists
assume it will be Yacht Club de France.
* At a press conference on Friday Riley declined to announce names, but
says the design team is confirmed and they will hold their first meeting
next month. "We have a design team but we can't announce their names
because they are currently under other contracts which they are trying to
get out of," said Riley. "It's a bit of a cat and mouse game at the moment."
One reporter asked if current Team New Zealand tactician Bertrand Pace
would be recruited into the team, to which Riley replied: "I don' think
it's appropriate to be talking to people who are still trying to win a
regatta. "The sailors and not the most urgent peope to sign up. It's the
designers and sponsorships which are."
With a target budget of NZ$120 million, sponsorship is going to be very
important to K-Challenge, and like this year's French challenge Le Defi
Areva, one of their sponsors will be a nuclear energy company, CEA. - Fiona
McIlroy, nzoom.com, full story:
JULES VERNE TROPHY
* GERONIMO: Having rounded Cape Horn yesterday, the weather around Geronimo
is calm at the moment, just a breath of air and a slightly breaking sea.
"We are only making between 6 and 12 knots off the Isla de los Estados.
We're heading for the island south of the Falklands. The forecasts aren't
good. There's a high pressure system moving towards us which is stopping us
heading any further east. Having discussed it with Pierre Lasnier this
morning, we've decided to stick to the direct route. There's no strategy or
other solution that will allow us to try and avoid a weather system at this
time." - http://www.grandsrecords.com
* KINGFISHER2 is making some north in readiness for the big blow tomorrow:
"It's going to come in hard and strong tomorrow," said skipper Ellen
MacArthur. "We are going quite quick at the moment with a reasonable breeze
- pretty lucky really considering we have been plagued by this front moving
east that we are now just south of... The most important thing is just to
get east. Water temperature is just at 4 degrees and the nav station just
happens to be the leeward hull at the moment: I am sitting here in full oil
skins, boots and I have the coldest feet I have ever had - the nav station
is the coldest place at the moment!"
Kingfisher2 Day 22 Summary (http://www.teamkingfisher.com):
- 4 hours 8 minutes behind Orange
- 73 hours 42 minutes behind Geronimo
- Day 22 (24 hour run): Kingfisher2-466 nm, Orange-397 nm, Geronimo-463 nm.
- Distance to go: Kingfisher2- 16443 nm, Orange-16377 nm, Geronimo-15264 nm.
Love or hate him, no one can challenge Russell Coutts' standing as one of
yachting's greats. Some go even further, claiming he is the greatest the
sport has seen. He is now the most successful skipper in the 152-year
history of the America's Cup. Coutts took that mantle from Charlie Barr,
who had a 9-0 winning sequence in three contests from 1899 to 1903. Like
Coutts, Barr set his record representing a country other than that of his
For those who want to know more about this former Olympic Gold Medallist
and International Yacht Racing Union's (ISAF's predecessor organization)
World Sailor of the Year, we recommend Terry Maddaford's comprehensive
story on the NZ Herald website:
Drama unfolded overnight as Around Alone Class 2 skipper Tim Kent on
Everest Horizontal narrowly avoided dismasting. He was alerted in the night
by noise at the bow to find the tack of the headstay had parted and, loaded
with the big genoa, the headstay was flailing around at the bow. The pin
holding the headstay to the toggle had come undone and also the rod had
parted at the top of the headstay after all the flogging of a fully loaded
furler. The halyard was holding up the headstay alone. Kent had to jettison
the entire unit and lose the genoa too. "What was important was that the
rig was tested and passed.
Graham Dalton on Hexagon is finding that his boat is revelling in the
strong weather of late, but that his battery-charging problem on board
persists. So far Dalton has had to wire the batteries that are used for
moving Hexagon's keel into the main circuit, which has provided enough
power to keep all of the instruments working.
STANDINGS: 2200 UTC February 21 CLASS 1: 1. Bobst Group-Armor Lux,
Bernard Stamm, 3480 miles from finish 2. Solidaires, Thierry Dubois 191
miles behind leader; 3. Hexagon, Graham Dalton, 396 mbl; 4. Tiscali, Simone
Bianchetti, 508 mbl; 5. Ocean Planet, Bruce Schwab, 601 mbl 6. Pindar, Emma
Richards, 747 mbl.
CLASS 2: 1. Tommy Hilfiger, Brad Van Liew, 4299 miles from finish; 2.
Everest Horizontal, Tim Kent, 567 mbl; 3. Spirit of yukoh, Kojiro
Shiraishi, 750 mbl; 4. BTC Velocity, Alan Paris, 1071 mbl; 5. Spirit of
Canada, Derek Hatfield, 1336 mbl. - www.aroundalone.com
There will not be a parade through central Auckland parade if Alinghi win
the America's Cup. Auckland City councillor and America's Cup co-ordinating
committee member Scott Milne says, however, there are plans for a parade if
Team New Zealand manages to defend the trophy. "There won't be a parade
down the middle of the street for Alinghi," he said. "And I'm afraid there
will be no parade for losers." - NZ Herald,
Scuttlebutt has learned that if there is a speed difference between Alinghi
and Team New Zealand, it won't be because of their battens. Both boats are
using a new product, carbon fiber mainsail battens supplied by CT
Sailbattens. For additional information, go to http://www.sailbattens.com
IT WON'T BE IN MONACO
Prince Albert of Monaco is just one of the many rich and famous who have
jetted to Auckland during the racing this year. Prince Albert's visit has
fuelled rumours that he is talking with the Swiss syndicate about hosting
the next cup if Alinghi win.
The Prince admitted the matter had been discussed, but he said the
principality would not be the host. "We had thought about Alinghi, but a
quick analysis showed that while it would be a wonderful event it is just
too big for Monaco to accommodate. We are only two-and-a-half square miles
[4sq km] in size. We know the approximate size and the logistics needed for
the cup and we couldn't do it. So no, we are not proposing to host the
cup." - NZ Herald, www.nzherald.co.nz/americascup/
LETTERS TO THE CURMUDGEON (email@example.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 Paul Larsen: Where can I buy the brand of television that Kelly
Young has? Mine receives the ESPN broadcast that replays the opening
stand-up as many as three times when a race is delayed, gives audio that
often confuses which boat is doing what, pronounces the Louis Vuitton media
director as "Bruno Trouberlay," takes down the Omega starting clock seven
seconds before the gun, giggles at TNZ filling with water, identifies
navigator Mike Drummond as the tactician, hasn't shown a feature yet, and
during four broadcasts has aired one interview. Obviously I need a new TV.
* From Brent Foxall: It is sure fun experiencing the AC here in Auckland
now that the smoke and mirrors have disappeared. The press have overly
hyped the "HULA" to such an extent, that I think they put the vex on poor
TNZ. It is clearly not the best thing since sliced bread and certainly
hasn't the same ramifications as Ben Lexcen's kit in 83 as some scribes
alluded to. The long bulb looked cool at the unveiling, but many are
wondering why 4 spreaders again. The 3 spreader millenium last time was
certainly a "blinder" as it was almost like having 6 sets of spreaders. Why
would you need the equivilant of 8 sets of spreaders then? The boat can't
be that stiff! Every day when 82 doesn't go sailing, some poor bloke spends
about three hours a day up at the hounds working on something. Hopefully
they don't have issues up there and she'll soon find her legs.
It is quite clear after the first race debacle that they couldn't have
sheeted on too hard in the buildup to the cup as the gear wouldn't have
broken in race one nor would she have swamped going upwind. Have they hit
the wall down at TNZ? I hope not, as this is one fine part of a very
troubled world and it will be a shame to leave it.
* From Bob Longpre: I was on the Hauraki Gulf for the postponed fourth
race of the Americas Cup. It was obvious to everyone here that there was
plenty of wind and the shifting was within normal yacht race perimeters.
What is also apparent is Team New Zealand did not want to race that day. It
gives them one extra day to practice with new tactician Bertrand Pace and
the city of Auckland a full extra day of income should the series go 5-0.
So once again the Americas Cup is not about racing its about big business
* From Peter Epstein: Attending a regatta whether it be at one's home
club or after significant travel, there is always room for "conflict of
interest or bias" of the race committee. This is often dismissed because
there are several boats from the home club vying for the same honour. When
there are only two boats competing (one of which is from your yacht club)
and the honour is the "America's Cup" my conflict of interest warning meter
goes off the scale!
Race committees do their best to set good courses and the reasons for
abandoning a race are due to lack of wind, too much wind, or the time
limits from the racing rules have been violated. Too shifty, Too bad! When
there is breeze, you sail! The wind shifts all of the time! That's what
makes sailing unpredictable and fun. If Harold Bennett wants a perfect race
course, he should be the one who raises the green flag at a CART or Indy
* From Beth Opperman Andrewes: Vince Cooke, Regatta Operations Director,
Louis Vuitton Cup 2000 (Scuttlebutt 1266) said it so succinctly. In its
understandable pain the Kiwi public has unfortunately had the wrong two men
in its sights. Emotions have run high in a country that feels it has so
very much at stake. It does! After the egregious blunders by Richard Green
and John Lusk et al, yachtsmen on America's Cup boats will never again be
seen as mere commodities. Russell and Brad have given the powers that be
the heads up on that one and they have taken the heat unfairly for years
with corinthian spirit.
As exciting as it is to contemplate a new venue, there is quite a pall of
sadness for many of us that we may indeed see the Cup leave the wonderful
venue of the Hauraki gulf and the enthusiastic and sailing savvy people of
NZ because of the harm caused by these two irresponsible men. There is
something beguiling about this little can do country of great sailors. We
all know there is nowhere quite like Auckland, New Zealand for yachties and
yacht racing and we may just have to get used to this.
* From Josie Branco: All this talk about Russell stealing the Cup away
from New Zealand is absurd. The people of New Zealand should get over their
claims of treason against Russell and Brad and stop whining. USA thought
they would have the Cup forever, too, at one time. Surely it must have been
difficult for Dennis to lose, but he still lived to race another day.
With much of the world living with poverty, AIDS or real terror to name
just a few circumstances, we are the lucky ones. Just sit back and enjoy
the races. Sometimes the team you support wins, and sometimes it loses.
There will be another Cup Race after this one is finished. After all, isn't
the real fun and excitement the actual competition during the race.
* From Peter Harken: Jerry Wood's legacy will be: "The Inventor of the
In-the-Water Boat Show"! There may have been some much smaller others
before his great Annapolis or rather US Sailboat Shows, but I can't
remember any and I've been to all of his shows through the many years. He
made it great from the very first one and no one has surpassed it , no one.
That show in Annapolis in October is the best, world wide, period! Jerry
was a really good man and gave all of us in the marine business a superb
outlet for our products and a great time. We'll miss the man down here big
time, but now it's show time for Jerry upstairs, "Full On, Jerry!"
* From Donald Macaulay (SAIL Mag. '70-'99): Let me echo Frank Betz's
remarks about Jerry Wood. In the early 1970's the sailing industry had a
rush of new ideas which became wonderful engines of growth. They came in
the form of new boat designs and construction, chartering, exotic sails,
new magazines, ways to access the sport, and slick gear. Add to that the
in-the-water sailboat show which Jerry Wood perfected at Annapolis. Here
gathered - at a time and place - was the US Sailboat Show which became
"the" meeting place of our sport and the industry serving it. He was a
master builder. He built it... and they came! Jerry Wood has died and
frankly never got proper recognition for his great contributions.Those that
make a living in the sailing business should stop for a moment and hail
THE CURMUDGEON'S OBSERVATIONS
Budget: A guideline for going broke methodically.