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SCUTTLEBUTT 1302 - April 7, 2003

Powered by SAIC (, 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.

April 4 - The President of the International Olympic Committee, Jacques
Rogge, today announced the composition of the 24 commissions and working
groups whose task it is to guide the IOC and the Olympic Games organizing

ISAF President, Paul Henderson (CAN), a member of the IOC since September
2000, retains a seat on the Sport and Environment Commission, and is now
also a member on the Women in Sport Working Group. Peter Tallberg (FIN)
ISAF President between 1986 and 1994, is an honorary member of the IOC
Athletes Commission.

Paul has proudly represented the ISAF and Sport of Sailing on the IOC since
2000, and is one of only five Sports Federation representatives, out of the
35 Sports in the summer games. He has often expressed his views on the
future of women in sport. It is only since 1988, that there has been a
separate women's class at the Olympic Games.

The number of Women competing in sailing at Olympic level has risen
steadily since 1988. From a participation percentage of 19% in Savannah, it
is guaranteed to be over 35% in Athens next year.

At an ISAF level, Paul initiated a proposed increase in the representation
of women on the ISAF Executive, Council and within MNA groups, as per IOC
mandates. This has all but been achieved and whereas in 1996 there was one
woman on the ISAF Council, today there are now four on the Council,
including one Vice-President. - ISAF website, full story:

SWEDISH MATCH TOUR - Congressional Cup
For six months Denmark's Jes Gram-Hansen and Jesper Radich have been
sitting in the top two spots in the Swedish Match Tour's rankings, but a
flock of America's Cup competitors are here to tell them the fun is over
for the Long Beach Yacht Club's 39th Congressional Cup Tuesday through
Saturday. Australia's James Spithill, New Zealand's Gavin Brady, America's
Ken Read, Sweden's Magnus Holmberg, France's Luc Pillot and Italy's Paolo
Cian were occupied in Auckland when the Danes were swapping wins in the
Danish Open last August and the Bermuda Gold Cup in October.

Peter Holmberg, who won four of the last five, is at home in the U.S.
Virgin Islands, winding down from a good run as helmsman for Oracle BMW.
The only past winners present are Brady ('96-97) and---whoa!---Britain's
Chris Law, who won here in 1994 before slipping into retirement but now
seems as feisty as ever at 50. He shares third place in the Swedish Match
Tour rankings with Spithill.

The Congressional Cup again will be sailed on the Catalina 37 sloops built
for the event. Each boat must have a minimum crew of six and a maximum
combined crew weight of 1,200 pounds. The format will be a double round
robin followed by best-of-three semifinals and finals. Racing starts on
Tuesday. - Rich Roberts, /

According to Ben Hall, round is in! We've seen a lot of experimentation
with other pole styles, but Hall's carbon tubes continue to rock the racing
world. But accidents happen: we've also developed the QuikSplint, a repair
kit that will allow you to finish that distance race in a gale without
carrying an extra pole. Check out prices for our carbon poles and
lightweight end fittings, as well as a description of the QuikSplint, at

April 5 - There is one week to go until the start of the final leg of the
Around Alone and the docks in Salvador are a buzz with activity. This has
been the longest stopover for all the boats and the skippers have taken the
opportunity to rest and relax as well as sort their boats for the long leg
ahead. Most of the skippers have taken some time off. Others like Tim Kent,
Alan Paris and Kojiro Shiraishi have been hard at work, but at a less
frenetic pace than in the other stops. The big stuff of the race, Cape Horn
and the Southern Ocean, is now a distant memory, but the leg to Newport is
no less important. Blow this one and you blow the race. With that in mind
the skippers and shore teams are not taking anything for granted. Salvador
to Newport is longer than a Transatlantic crossing.

Brad Van Liew arrived back in Brazil today with his wife and daughter. It's
Tate's first birthday and she celebrated by stopping by Dad's boat for a
visit. Van Liew has been back in the US on some well deserved R&R and is
now ready for the last leg. Of all the skippers. - Brian Hancock,

New Zealand bowman Joey Allen has little doubt Team New Zealand can raise
the cash for another tilt at the America's Cup, but is less confident the
syndicate has the homegrown talent to win back sailing's ultimate prize.
The 45-year-old Aucklander is convinced Team NZ must recruit overseas
sailors if they are to win the Auld Mug off the Russell Coutts-led Swiss
syndicate Alinghi in 2007.

"We have to retain our key sailors quickly, and then recruit very, very
aggressively," Allen, a guest at Wellington club Worser Bay's annual Hebtro
Trophy fundraising regatta yesterday, said. "I would go shopping for more
experienced sailors, probably offshore. We have to get more experience into
the sailing team."

Allen agrees Team NZ pushed the design envelope too far in its second
defence of the Auld Mug in February-March, when it failed to finish twice
and suffered gear failure in three races en-route to an embarrassing 5-0
loss to Alinghi. But he is convinced a lack of experience throughout Team
New Zealand's sailing team, caused by raids on the syndicate's key
personnel after the successful 2000 defence, was an even greater handicap.

"The guys we had busted their guts, but Team NZ is not a sailing school,"
he said. "Imagine having to replace a whole rugby team. The replacements we
got were very young and very keen Kiwi yachties, but they were probably not
quite ready for it."

Allen believes Dean Barker should be retained as skipper and hopes he is
signed quickly before being lured offshore by a rival syndicate. "Dean's
obviously very important. He was probably a bit young for the position he
was put into for the last campaign, but I think his best is to come. He's a
young man in an old man's game."

Allen did not sail in this year's doomed campaign and is unsure if he will
be involved in any 2007 challenge in a similar coaching capacity. But he is
confident Team NZ will make the start line in whichever port Alinghi
chooses to defend the cup, with sponsors reportedly queuing up at the
prospect of European exposure. "Team NZ can't finish like that . . . we're
better than that result," he said. - Kent Gray, The Dominion Post, Full

* The Olympic Sailing Committee (OSC) of US Sailing is looking for a
volunteer coach to support the athletes it will send to the XIV Pan
American Games, scheduled for August 1-17, 2003, in Santo Domingo,
Dominican Republic. The U.S. has qualified to enter all nine events: Laser
(men) and Mistral (men and women), and the non-Olympic Laser Radial
(women), Hobie 16, J/24, Lightning, Snipe and Sunfish (all open). The
Assistant Coach for the 2003 Pan Am Sailing Team is a volunteer position,
with only travel and onsite accommodations covered. Interested coaches can
apply by submitting a coaching resume and cover letter via e-mail to
Olympic Head Coach Gary Bodie ( by April 30, 2003

* Once again, the Marion-Bermuda Cruising Yacht Race will have a separate
Division for boats that only use celestial navigation to plot their
position. The race starts on Friday, June 20th and will use Americap II
handicapping. Of the 80 entries already accepted, 40% are repeat boats and
captains. -

* The staff at Scuttlebutt has seen plenty of yacht clubs over the years,
and has enjoyed the bar stools of some of the finest. This list includes
the Sloop Tavern YC in Seattle, WA. However this YC begs the question:
Which came first, the yacht club or the bar? Judge for yourself:

The Zimmerman Trophy is awarded to the skipper with the lowest score for
the entire Snipe Winter Circuit, which includes four regattas, sailed in
Clearwater, Miami and Nassau. Augie Diaz with crew Lori Lowe won the Dudley
Gamblin Memorial Trophy this week in Nassau, clinching the Zimmerman.
However, it was not a clean sweep; George and Stacey Szabo won the Bacardi
Cup, also sailed in Nassau this week. The Snipe Class has great regattas
all year round, check the web site for regatta reports, photos, and a
complete calendar:

Tortola, British Virgin Islands, April 6, 2003 The forecast, early
morning breeze, and spotters on the top of Tortola, said it looked good but
the reality was different on the last day of racing for the BVI Spring
Regatta. A decision to send both the fleets round the islands ended in
cancellations for most of the classes but four classes managed to finish
spinnaker and non-spinnaker beach cats, racing A and racing B.

Because of the lack of racing today, yesterday's standings from Cape Air
CORT became final. So after three regattas and 22 races Lost Horizon II,
the Olson 30 from Antigua, took overall in Racing class from the J/27,
Magnificent 7. In the Melges 24 fleet St Maarten's 2 Contact Carib took an
overall win. Cold Beer, John Schultheiss' Tartan 10, won a close-fought
battle with the Sirena 38, Pipe Dream in the Racer/ Cruiser Class. Sotto
Voce continues to lead the racing class in the Caribbean Big Boat Series
with Antigua Sailing Week to go.

For results, photos and more:

(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 Arthur Jones: It may come as surprise to you, but there are those
of us who sail and don't drink. I don't criticize or comdemn those who
drink sensibly however, I feel your Preseason Refresher Course in
Scuttlebutt 1301 was out of line.

* From Michael A. Yellenik: Thank you for the 'Preseason Refresher
Course' in Scuttlebutt 1301. I had a great laugh and it made my day. Can
always use a chuckle on a Friday morning where the weather forecast is for
6 to 10 inches of snow in the next 24 hours. Happy Spring?

* From Dallas Johnson: Sailors talk about sponsorship on sailboats as if
there was no division between the tiny fraction of professional sailors and
everyone else. For the vast majority of us, sponsorship on sailboats means
the limited pool of available sponsorship for regatta organizers is diluted
by competing boat owners. Additionally, parity in your local fleet will be
reduced as the best sailors get small discounts on hardware or sails and
the new sailors get nada. The primary benefit will be to business owners
who sail because their accountant will be finally able to write off more of
their sailing expenses with a straight face.

If you want someone to sponsor your racing program, paint your tow vehicle
with team logos where more people will actually see the advertising, the
ISAF won't care, and your accountant will be just as happy. My other sport
is bike racing where everyone has sponsors plastered on their backs. But
the sad truth is that most racers pay extra for the silk-screened sponsor
jerseys and in return only receive a 10% discount at their local bike shop.

* From Nicholas Stark: I don't think Peter Huston wasn't saying
sponsorship is "bad", or that only wealthy people should sail. He was just
saying that attaching a sponsors logo to your boat puts you in the
marketing business. There's nothing wrong with being in that business, but
it is a business, and if you wish to be successful in gaining sponsorship
more than once, you better pay attention to delivering marketing results,
which means a lot more than winning races.

Unless a company has a clear marketing strategy that involves sailing, the
better approach is probably to simply ask for a charitable gift. While you
might think offering a company visibility through sailing is beneficial,
unless they really want association with the sport, the request will be
rejected. It's not about money, it's about staying on message, and too many
messages to too many different audiences will only confuse their marketing
strategy. Besides, when you ask for money from the marketing department,
you'll get weighed against everything else they are involved in, and even
if sailing might be considered, you've got to have a substantial reason for
them to put marketing focus against the sport first, and you second. The
internal cost of sponsorship is alot more than just the fee they give you.

The difference here is having a "sponsor" vs having a "patron". Having a
sponsor means having to give a lot in return to them. Having a patron only
means that you represent yourself and your patron with dignity.

* From Andrew Besheer (edited to our 50-word limit): Surely Peter Huston
understands that a well presented event isn't free. My Club has a dinghy
championship regatta this weekend. Two days of racing, 60-70 dinghies, a
budget of around 10k and we won't break even. I would have killed to give a
presenting sponsor naming rights and was able to make a pretty compelling
value proposition, but in the current economy it's an impossible sell.
Thanks to all the other sponsors who have donated giveaways, bags, raffles,
etc., if the weather doesn't cooperate, and we lose a day, at least most of
the participants will have had a fun time. Now, multiply that financial
loss across the dozens of regattas that my Club runs every year. Even
though we have a large member base we can only take so much of a hit
subsidizing races.

Take it a step further to a major race week. These events cost in the 6
figure range to present. I don't care what club you belong to, they aren't
going to put on an event like that without extensive contributions from
sponsors. The few that have tried have found themselves in severe financial
straights as a result.

Anyone who thinks they're not already advertising already should look at
their foulies, sails, boom vang, etc, cause I'm thinking they all have very
obvious logos on them and they aren't there because you might forget which
brand you purchased!

* From Robert T. King: Since we are on the topic of harnesses, tethers,
and jack-lines, I believe it worthy to mention that catastrophic failure
will generally occur at a point which can gradually become the weakest link
over time: the stitching. My sail maker once declined to stitch loops into
the nylon webbing I intended to use for jack-lines. Why? Liability, of
course, but there are other factors.

A fixed loop creates a finite wear point, and a static length creates
localized chafe points along the run. I believe that it is better to tie on
the webbing, and change the effective length of the jack-lines from time to
time. UV exposure and salt corrosion also contribute to deterioration. One
is well advised to check the stitching in tethers, harnesses, and any fixed
attachment points in jack-lines. If at sea and in doubt, re-stitch it the
old fashioned way, with a needle and palm and fresh waxed nylon.

* From John Dukat (edited to our 250-word limit): In 'Butt 1300 Patrick
Broderick's Guest Editorial proclaimed that several lessons were learned
the day Harvey Schlasky died in the Double-handed Farallones Race. Maybe
the race shouldn't have been held on that day. Out the Gate races in March
and early April run the risk of facing extreme conditions. Southerlies
blast UP the coast and the Spring runoff makes the SF Bar rather nasty. A
J-35 was rolled and lost in a race about 2 weeks ago The fatality mentioned
in this thread was one of several experienced over the years in a variety
of these early season races. One particularly fatal race is known as the
"mini-Fastnet." MORA and OYRA (and their precursors) had their share of
scares, torn sails, knockdowns, dismastings and other misfortunes, but
there was only one fatality in the old Aeolian lightship race.

This brings up other questions. These "right of passage," "beginning of the
year" events attract big fleets of single and double-handed sailors. These
races are much more popular than any of the other fully-crewed ocean
events. If anything goes wrong can a boat with fewer hands respond as well
as a fully crewed boat? If it's a big fleet, are all the entrants
experienced enough to recognize problems such as the set you'd get from a
Southerly, or what happens when the ebb tide hits the bar?

Stiffening equipment requirements is only one part of the equation.
Lapworth once said something like, "The best safety equipment is the nut on
the tiller."

* From Bernard Olcott: The 1986 America's Cup Third Deed of Gift
proclaims "Centreboard or sliding keel vessels shall always be allowed to
compete in any race for the Cup, and no restriction nor limitation whatever
shall be placed upon the use of such centreboard or sliding keel". However,
IACC Rule, Vers. 4.0 proclaimed for the 2003 Cup Race: Article 19.9(d):
"Appendages rotation shall not increase the righting moment nor change the
fore and aft trim.", Article 19.9(e): "Appendages which are retractable
while racing are not permitted." and Article 19.9(h): "Appendages which are
ballast shall not rotate.". As all centerboard sailors know, centerboards
are generally iron for ballast, are rotatable, are retractable while racing
and that changes in the angle of rotation effect the fore and aft trim of
the hull and the righting or heel of the vessel. Such three articles
violate the Third Deed of Gift and are therefore ultra vires. None of such
three articles should appear in the next IACC Rule, Vers. 5.0 for the 2007
Cup Race.

Ted Hood, Successful Skipper of Courageous and Charter Member of the
America's Cup Hall of Fame, is the inventor of a new keel design in U.S.
Patent 6,349, 650 and NZ Patent 337467 which was outlawed by the above
mentioned ultra vires Article 19.9(h) and should therefore be allowable in
the 2007 Cup Race. Tank tests at the Stevens Institute of Technology have
shown a 17% improvement over the generic fixed fin with rotatable trim tab
towed at 4, 8 and 12 knots."

Ever notice that the people who are late are often much jollier than the
people who have to wait for them?