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SCUTTLEBUTT 1287 - March 17, 2003

Powered by SAIC (www.saic.com), an employee-owned company. Scuttlebutt is a
digest of major yacht racing news, 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.

GUEST EDITORIAL - Richard Hazelton
Want to know where all this litigation and pushing the rules - anything to
win mentality that's caused so many problems for the America's Cup comes
from? Just look at the comments in the last few Scuttlebutts about
kinetics. According to the rules of sailing, using kinetics is cheating, so
why all the upheaval? Of course sailors push things to the limits but those
limits have been reached. The basic rules of sailing were first written in
a "kinder, gentler" time of sailing, when guidelines were needed to level
the playing field, but winning wasn't the only thing. Sportsmanship and a
respect for your fellow sailors (and yourself) kept you within the rules.
Winning was important, but so was the way in which you won. You beat each
other up on the race course but could look your competitor in the eye at
the end of the day with a clear conscience.

Of course the point of racing is to win but at what cost? Unfortunately the
rules in sailing, as in life, are changed and massaged to "control" the few
that push things to extremes. But I know many an elite sailor who excels
and manages to sail to the same rules as everyone else, and I feel sad that
there are those that say that just isn't possible. The rules are there,
enforce them or throw them out What, or rather who, are the judges afraid
of? Maybe that's the real question.

It's like all the debates about rating systems. You can change systems all
you want, but in the end you'll still see the same sailor's names at the
top. The same with rules. Whatever the level of enforcement the sailors
will adapt and the cream will rise to the top. Let's hope sailing doesn't
keep going down the path taken by most sports today, where producing one
winner is more important than producing 100 participants.

JULES VERNE TROPHY
The weekend was cruel to France's Olivier de Kersauson, who failed to set a
record in the Jules Verne circumnavigation. When the clock stopped
yesterday morning, de Kersauson's 110ft trimaran Geronimo was level with
Cape Finistere with some 650 miles still remaining to the Ushant finish
line. Bruno Peyron's 64day, 8hr 37min record, set last year with Orange,
was beyond reach. - Tim Jeffery, The Telegraph, full story:
http://sport.telegraph.co.uk/sport/main.jhtml;$sessionid$HRMQKCBQHJYNLQFIQMGCFFOAVCBQUIV0?xml=/sport/2003/03/17/soyats17.xml&sSheet=/sport/2003/03/17/ixothspt.html

* The Cap Gemini and Schneider Electric trimaran continues her slow
progress towards Ushant. Olivier de Kersauson and his 10-man crew covered
only 176 nautical miles on their 64th day at sea: an average speed of 7.33
knots. Having set sail with 60 days' of food (5 of them fresh food days),
their supplies are beginning to let them down. - www.grandsrecords.com

* In this generation of big multihulls, the bar has been raised pretty
high. You're not going to set a round-the-world record on boatspeed. You
have to do it on weather routing and luck. And as skipper Oliver de
Kersauson said before he started, "The start is the only time you can pick
your weather." Geronimo's experience does prove, however, that trimarans
are viable for this game. Geronimo is the only tri in a fleet of record
chasers, the rest of which are cats. - Sail magazine website, full story:
www.sailmag.com/Boats/NewsOfTheDay/

RUSSELL COUTTS SPEAKS
"Keep the kids in sailing. We invest enormous amounts of our time and
energy on them while they are in the prams and then we promptly lose them!
Put them in an exciting dinghy like the Byte, a boat ideally suited to
their size and an ISAF Recognized Class already used in the World Youth
Championships and keep them in sailing. Not because they might one day be
in the America's Cup, but because it's a sport for life." Russell Coutts,
Team Alinghi. You will find the Byte, designed and built in North America
by PS2000 at http://www.ps2000.ca

OLYMPIC FUNDING
Bermuda's Peter Bromby (Star) and Paula Lewin (Yngling) have been awarded
ISAF Olympic Solidarity Scholarships which will provide essential funding
and support in their Olympic campaigns. The Olympic Solidarity Athens 2004
Scholarships provide athletes with financial support to fulfill the
necessary training and participation in events in their preparation for the
2004 Olympics. Olympic Solidarity considers applications received, which
are then approved in each country based on the potential of the applying
athlete, the number of applicants across the sports in that country and the
total number of applicants from that country.

Depending on the application made by the sailor, and where he/ she wishes
to train, effects the scholarship funding offered. Others receiving
Solidarity Scholarships: Ho Chi Ho (HKG) - Mistral Men; Ehud Gal (ISR) -
470 Men; Giden Kliger (ISR) - 470 Men; Allan Julie (SEY) - Laser ;
Przemyslaw Miarczynski (POL) - Mistral Men; Irina Konstantinova (BUL) -
Mistral Women; Georgiy Leonchuk (UKR) - 49er; Rodion Luka (UKR) - 49er;
Florencia Cerutti (ARG) - Europe; Kevin Lim (MAS) - Laser; Tatiana
Drozdovskaya (BLR) - Europe; Oka Sulaksana (INA) - Mistral Men.
www.sailing.org/training

THE CUP'S NEW HOME
The (America's) Cup will be on display in the Societe Nautique de Geneve,
just as when it was held by the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron in
Auckland. Situated on the shore of Lake Geneva, with a view of the Jet
d'Eau (the water spout) and Geneva harbour, the Societe organises many
regattas, including the famous 'Bol d'Or' with an annual entry of more than
500.

The club was established in 1872 and now has more than 3000 members. But
unlike typical New Zealand yacht clubs, the Societe Nautique has four
divisions - rowing, water skiing, yachting and "light yachting", which is
the term they use for the smaller classes such as the 49er and 470s.
Bertarelli has been a member of the club since 1982, and this is the link
between the club and Alinghi. - Julie Ash, NZ Herald, full story:
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/americascup/acstorydisplay.cfm?storyID=3200086&thesection=sport&thesubsection=americascup&thesecondsubsection=general

AROUND ALONE
Hexagon, considered the fastest boat in the Around Alone, will not complete
the solo round the world race as the task to find, fund and freight a
replacement mast in time for the final leg to Newport, Rhode Island, seems
impossible. Announcing his retirement from Argentina, New Zealand sailor
Graham Dalton, the older brother of Whitbread veteran Grant, ended an
ill-starred campaign in which he failed to qualify on time and lost his
mast twice. A beneficiary of Hexagon's withdrawal could be Briton Emma
Richards, whom Simone Bianchetti beat to the end of leg four in Salvador de
Bahia. The Italian's third place moved him to within a point of Richards's
third place overall total. Bianchetti must beat Richards by two places on
the last leg, since a tie would be split on elapsed time and Bianchetti was
dismasted on the second leg. - Tim Jeffery, The Telegraph, full story:
http://sport.telegraph.co.uk/sport/main.jhtml;$sessionid$4O50A42ZIAAL3QFIQMGCFFOAVCBQUIV0?xml=/sport/2003/03/15/soyots15.xml&sSheet=/sport/2003/03/15/ixothspt.html

* American Class 2 overall leader Brad Van Liew scored his 4th leg
victory in Around Alone with Open 50 Tommy Hilfiger Freedom America,
completing the longest 7,880 mile leg with an 800 mile lead over his
nearest rival Tim Kent on Everest Horizontal. Van Liew is now the only
skipper in either class to have won every leg so far.

In Van Liew's final log of Leg 4 he summed up the experience of racing
Tommy Hilfiger Freedom America one third of the way around the world to
another class win: "Merely surviving is an achievement, getting to the
destination is rewarding and winning the leg is icing on the cake that has
me buzzing internally."

The first images of Derek Hatfield on board dismasted Open 40 Spirit of
Canada are now online, and his story has become probably the most
compelling of the race so far. Once again, Andrew Pindar, sponsor of Emma
Richards, has stepped in to the breach and has offered to fund a new mast:
"It was just the right thing to do," Andrew Pindar said. "Getting Derek
back in the race was an outcome we all wanted and I knew that if I could
play a part in it, I would have to help." Moreover, all of this negotiation
for a new mast was carried out by a former Around Alone veteran, Josh Hall,
who knew exactly what was needed, having twice lost his mast aboard his
boat Gartmore (which is now Pindar).

Hatfield was ecstatic about the news. "I have ordered a new carbon mast
from King Harken in Buenos Aires. They are the same mast builders that
built Brad's (Van Liew) replacement mast four years ago. We will have the
mast delivered here to Ushuaia as soon as possible and get back out to the
spot where we lost the rig and proceed sailing from there to Salvador, thus
completing Leg 4." Derek also had more good news to report. "The second
good news call came from Decoma International, who, along with Magna
International, have offered to support the Spirit of Canada with a new
mainsail and the two new jibs that were lost with the mast." - Mary Amber,
www.aroundalone.com

STANDINGS: 2200 UTC March 16 CLASS 1. Bobst Group-Armor Lux, Bernard
Stamm Solidaires, finished; 2. Thierry Dubois, finished; 14; 3. Tiscali,
Simone Bianchetti, finished; 4. Pindar, Emma Richards, finished 5. Ocean
Planet, Bruce Schwab, 651 miles from finish; Hexagon, Graham Dalton,
withdrew from race.

CLASS 2: 1. Tommy Hilfiger, Brad Van Liew, finished; 2. Everest Horizontal,
Tim Kent, 674 miles from finish; 3. Spirit of yukoh, Kojiro Shiraishi, 835
mff; 4. BTC Velocity, Alan Paris, 1539 mff; Spirit of Canada, Derek
Hatfield, dismasted.

FOR THE RECORD
Carrying two sailing adventurers and a symbolic cargo of tea, the trimaran
Great American II departed Hong Kong Harbor Sunday in a bid to set a new
sailing record to New York City. Rich Wilson, 52, from Rockport, Mass., and
Rich du Moulin, 56, from Larchmont, NY, are undertaking the non-stop 15,000
mile voyage in an attempt to break a 154-year old passage record but also
to break new ground in adventure-based education for K5-12 schoolchildren.
The 53-foot trimaran, home-ported in Rockport, is chasing the time of 74
days and 14 hours, set in 1849 by the legendary clipper ship Sea Witch as
she raced home to New England with a cargo of tea from the orient.

If Great American II can beat the clipper ship's pace, Wilson and du Moulin
will finish at the Statue of Liberty sometime during the week of May 26.
The voyage of Great American II will be followed online by school children
from throughout the United States, and students will be able to see how
math, sciences such as meteorology and oceanography, and even the lessons
of history apply in real-time adventure. - Keith Taylor, www.sitesalive.com

SPRING BREAK FOR SAILORS
The Snipe Class is beginning its Winter Circuit next weekend in Clearwater,
Florida. There is still time for you to make arrangements to join in on the
great racing and fun parties. PanAm Trials: March 21-23; Midwinters: March
24-26. Then drive to Miami for the Don-Q March 28-30. And if you are really
adventuresome, load your Snipe on a freighter and sail it in Nassau April
2-5. This is two weeks of competitive racing and great times. Want a spring
break? Sail Snipes. Check the webpage for details: http://www.snipeus.org

THE PREZ SAYS - Paul Henderson President of ISAF
Barton Beek's observation in Scuttlebutt is quite perceptive and I agree.
It is the Star Class which chooses to be in the Olympics and lobbies like
hell every four years to keep that designation and so they should. The Star
Class has tried to adapt their rules to accommodate their Olympic
Obligations. In fact when the IOC said drop the keelboats for 2008, the
Star Class went through the roof as the overwhelming majority of the Star
sailors dream to sail in the Olympic Games. (Dierk Thomsen and Riccardo,
Past and Present Star Presidents, were very helpful in this lobby.)

ISAF must juggle all the balls in the air which are MNA's, IOC,
Sailors,Classes and ISAF. I respectfully submit that many of the best
sailors now come into the Star because of the Olympic Gold. It was
reassuring to see Loof, Percy and Cayard proudly sailing with their Gold
Stars at the MORC (joint Miami Olympic Classes Regatta). It is the Star
Class which chooses not to award this designation not ISAF at the Cadiz
Joint Worlds Championship of Olympic Classes. Hopefully they will reconsider.

ISAF does not have the option of delegating Olympic autonomy to the Olympic
Classes as ISAF does not have autonomy themselves and must work with the
reality of the decrees of the IOC. The main problem is that although the
IOC delegates the technical aspects of the Games to ISAF the direct
involvement of the athletes is delegated to the NOC's (USOC) who work with
the MNA's (USSA).

I believe the positives of Olympic Status far outweigh the few erosions of
class autonomy that designation brings and why ISAF did everything possible
to reverse the IOC Keelboat directive which has been accomplished and if
the Star Class decides they want to remain Olympic they will be there for
years to come.

Cadiz will be a great a great success for sailing with the coming together
of all Olympic Sailors in one venue. I am sure the Star Class will be proud
to be included and the exposure may even attract more old Finn and Laser
sailors thus ensuring the continued health of the class.

The Cadiz promotion for Sailing will be terrific. It would be terrific to
hold it in North America 2007 on the 100th Anniversary of ISAF after the
successes of Melbourne 1999 and Cadiz 2003. It will become Sailing's World Cup.

MELGES 24 NATIONALS
Pensacola Yacht Club - The final day of racing at the US Nationals was an
absolute corker with clear skies, sunshine and 72 degrees. Winds were 10-12
knots from 180-190 degrees. Three races were completed to make the regatta
total - nine races, with one throw out. Doug Kessler and his P&P Sailing
Team sailed the final two races very conservatively to ensure their overall
victory scoring a 5 and 6 to win the regatta by 7 points overall. Behind
him Britain's Roger Peacock and the Black Seal team were delighted with
their win in the penultimate race and despite a disappointing twelfth in
the final race just managed to hang on to their second place overall on
count back against Italy's Flavio Favini helming for Franco Rossini.
Others: 4. Argyle Campbell, 5. Peder Nergaard, 6. Brian Porter, 7. Paula
Zubrzycki. - Fiona Brown, Results and photos: www.melges24.com

SAN DIEGO NOOD
The second of nine stops on Sailing World Magazine's National Offshore One
Design Regatta (NOOD) tour wrapped up Sunday in San Diego with the crowning
of 16 class champions. After three days of racing in a variety of weather
conditions off San Diego's Point Loma, and on San Diego Bay, only two of
156 teams went undefeated. For Jed Olenick on the J/120 Doctor No, from
Olivenhain, Calif., his team's sweep was a first in the four years they've
raced together. David Hammett, of Anaheim, Calif., racing in the five-boat
J/80 class, mirrored Olenick's performance for his first NOOD regatta win.
In the event's two largest classes, the Etchells and J/105s, class leaders
Vince Brun and Dennis Case, respectively, maintained their overall leads
with solid performances. - Dave Reed, complete results, www.sailingworld.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 Norman Davant: For several years new the world has been desperate
for a single grand prix rating rule, I am asking from a yacht club member
trying to run great racing, a competitor wanting to sail exciting
innovative boats and an industry pro looking for new challenges to get your
butts in gear and come up with a rating rule that the international sailing
world will embrace. We really need the Rules Working Party to do this when
they meet on March 24-25. The AC guys came up with a rule that I would say
works pretty darned well in a weekend, I challenge the Rule Working Party
to do the same. We need a new rule today - not in 2005.

* From Bud Thompson: I just finished Ellen MacArthur's "Taking on the
World" and found it excellent reading. She not only told a good sailing
story but did a nice job presenting her thoughts on each new experience.

THE CURMUDGEON'S OBSERVATIONS
The real art of conversation is not only to say the right thing at the
right time, but also to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.