SCUTTLEBUTT 1364 - July 3, 2003
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FARR 40 WORLDS
Perfect sailing conditions greeted the 37-boat fleet on the first day of
the Rolex Farr 40 World Championship which is being sailed in front of
Porto Cervo, Sardinia and organised by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda this
week. 25-knot winds, flat warm water and bright sunshine left nothing but
smiling faces on the 370 crew who stepped ashore after finishing the first
two races late this afternoon. The happiest crew in town being the group
that sail on board Steve Phillips' Le Renard, the defending world champion
who leads the fleet after the first day's racing.
The first race saw the 37 boat fleet sail a 2-mile weather leg to a top
mark positioned just offshore from Capo Ferro, the Costa Smeralda's famous
lighthouse. The leaders at the first corner came from the right side of the
course and it was John Coumantaros, at the helm of Bambakou, that rounded
in front with a healthy four-boat length lead. By the time the fleet had
got to the leeward gate Coumantaros, assisted by tactician Chris Larson,
had opened a 30 second lead, something that is hard to touch on a stable
fresh day like today.
The second race got underway shortly after 1400 hours and saw the fleet
spread evenly along the long start line. Jim Richardson's dark blue Barking
Mad made the best exit from the blocks at the committee boat end. Just to
weather and slightly behind was the morning's winner Bambakou. This pair
set the pace for the first lap of the course, with Coumantaros making all
the running, demonstrating enough extra boatspeed to draw level by the
second weather mark. A slight boathandling error by the Bamabakou crew
meant that what was planned as a close port tack dip astern of Barking Mad
ended up with a stalled rudder and an emergency tack to leeward of the
leader. Having committed a foul in the process, Bambakou exonerated herself
with a 360-degree penalty turn.
Three races are scheduled for Thursday with more moderate sailing
Provisional Results after two races (Owner/ Tactician): 1. Le Renard, Steve
Phillips/ Kevin Hall (4,3/7 pts); 2. Bambakou, John Coumantaros/ Chris
Larson (1,7/8 pts); 3. Nerone, Massimo Mezzaroma/ Vasco Vascotto (13,1/14
pts); 4. Warlord VII, Phlip Tolhurst/ Chris Main (10,4/14 pts); 5. GBR-25,
Mark Heeley/ Iain Percy (9,6/15 pts); 6. Seven Alberto/ Signorini Tommasso
Chieffi (8,11/19 pts); 7. Struntje Light, Wolfgang Schaefer/ Michael Coxon
(3,19/22 pts); 8. Warpath, Steve & Fred Howe/ John Cutler (14,8/22 pts); 9.
Game On, Oswald/Bainbridge/ Anthony Haines (11,12/23 pts); 10. Barking Mad,
Jim Richardson/ Terry Hutchinson (22,2/24 pts). - Complete Results at:
Day One Quotes:
"I'd have to put the reason for our success today down to the fact that
we spent more than 40 minutes sailing around upwind on the race course area
before anyone else left the dock this morning. We really managed to settle
in and understand the conditions. We had speed and the crew never once let
me down with boat handling." Steve Phillips, owner/skipper of Le Renard,
defending world champion and overall leader after two races.
"In the first race we had a great start and that coupled with good speed
and tactics got us to the first mark first. Believe it or not after that it
is pretty straight forward in this fleet to stay ahead when you have a
buffer. This afternoon was initially a similar scenario, we started well
and were in second place catching Barking Mad. At the second top mark we
were ducking them on port, the rudder stalled out and we tacked and fouled
them. We did a penalty turn and lost five places in the process." John
Coumantaros, owner/skipper of Bambakou, 2nd overall. -
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The final race format for the Antarctica Cup International Yacht Race 2005
will pit national teams against each other in identical maxi yachts. They
will race through the stormy reaches of the Southern Ocean for a prize of
4.7 million euros, the richest purse in international yacht racing history.
The race will take place in February 2005, starting and finishing in
Auckland. The course will take the race yachts around the world's most
feared and respected sailing landmarks Cape Horn, the Cape of Good Hope and
Says Race Chairman Bob Williams. "The boat is an ingenious solution to
providing a fleet of identical 25 metre thoroughbred racers that can be
converted, after racing duties, to a luxury racer/cruiser. This fits well
with our mission to create an international yacht race based on sound
business principles that delivers a substantial return on investment to
individual boat sponsors.
Features of the race include:
- Strict nationality rules
- A minimum of six and a maximum of 10 entries will compete.
- The yachts will be absolutely identical to the last detail.
- The yachts race non-stop, but pass through 12 gates, some geographic and
- The yachts are expected to take 45 days to complete the 15,000 mile course.
Before the race, the teams will take part in a mandatory 45-day programme
of events, based out of Auckland. These will include short-course racing,
offshore racing. A race around New Zealand is in being considered as a
testing 'shakedown' before the major event.
After Tuesday's drifting start, the fleet found fresh breeze to 11 or 12
knots in the San Pedro Channel that was still blowing 8 ½ knots by the time
the leaders passed the West End of Santa Catalina Island---the only mark of
the course 23 miles out. The first boat around was There and Back Again, a
Tripp 40 sailed by Robert Rice of Long Beach. Only Beautiful Day was in
front of There and Back Again at morning roll call time.
As observed by spectator Doug Ludden, "As soon as the wind filled, There
and Back Again just took off and left everybody. The wind went really to
the west and everybody got lifted incredibly. Everybody was on their
biggest sails. It appeared that the entire fleet got around the West End
without having to tack."
On projected corrected handicap time, Stan and Sally Honey's Cal 40,
Illusion, from Palo Alto, was the overall leader among the 10 Cal 40s, 11
Alohas and four racing division 5 boats that started Tuesday in painfully
light winds off the Palos Verdes Peninsula. Illusion had sailed 117 miles
and led all of the Cal 40s, boat for boat, with the Pillsbury family's
Ralphie second and Don and Betty Lessley's California Girl third.
The next start will see 23 Division 3 and 4 boats go on Friday, followed by
the last and fastest dozen on Sunday. Daily position reports, news
summaries, photos will be posted at http://www.transpacificyc.org
SWEDISH MATCH TOUR
Marstrand, Sweden (July 2, 2003) - The rain finally disappeared on the
third day of the Swedish Match Cup, the final event of Swedish Match Tour
2002/2003, and so did the wind, then it reappeared, and so did the wind.
After several delays and thanks to the long Swedish day, Group 2 was
finally able to take to the water, concluding their opening round as a
more-competitive-than-normal sunset sail.
When the proverbial dust settled, Sweden's Mattias Rahm of Team Stena Bulk
advanced as the top qualifier from his group to Stage 2 of the Swedish
Match Cup, as Rahm and crew went 2-1 on the day to finish 6-1 overall.
"It's hard when you do one race (in the morning) and then go sit for six
hours and go back out again," confessed Rahm. "All the guys here are so
good, you have to be a little lucky in each race you win," explained Rahm.
"The best guys sail their own way around the course, you can't fool the
competitors on the Swedish Match Tour."
Posting perfect records of 3-0 on the day were Denmark's Jesper Radich,
Swedish Match Tour rankings leader, and fellow Dane Jesper Bank, helmsman
for the Victory Challenge. Meanwhile, Denmark's Jes Gram-Hansen of Team
Victory Lane finished the day 0-3 and his overall record of 1-6 eliminated
him from the regatta, ending his chances of winning the Swedish Match Tour.
Tied with Gram-Hansen at 1-6 but advancing on to the next round is Sweden's
Mikael Lindqvist who further explained Rahm's comment about the importance
of luck by stating, "Sometimes you beat the right guys."
Tomorrow Group 1 which features Australia's Peter Gilmour of Team Pizza La,
Sweden's Magnus Holmberg of Team StoraEnso, Peter Holmberg of the US Virgin
Islands, Great Britain's Andy Beadsworth, Australia's James Spithill, Great
Britian's Chris Law of "The Outlaws," American Ed Baird of Team Musto,
Poland's Karol Jablonski of the Jablonski Sailing Team and Sebastien
Destremau of Le Defi Areva take to the water.
Swedish Match Cup Open Class Standings - Group 2: 1. Mattias Rahm, SWE/Team
Stena Bulk (6-1); 2. Jesper Radich, Denmark (6-1); 3. Jesper Bank, Denmark
(5-2); 4. Johnie Berntsson, Sweden (4-3); 5. Paolo Cian, ITA/Riviera di
Rimin di Sailing Team (3-4); 6. Staffan Lindberg, Finland (2-5); 7. Mikael
Lindqvist, Sweden (1-6); 8. Jes Gram-Hansen, DEN/Team Victory Lane (1-6). -
Shawn McBride, http://www.swedishmatchtour.com and
THE CARBON QUESTION
The answer to the carbon question is "yes" - a Hall Spars & Rigging
carbon-fiber spinnaker pole will improve the performance of your boat (if
you don't believe us, run out and weigh your pole after reading this ad).
Hall has several high-performance carbon poles available now at special
pricing: One measures 17 feet LOA with a 3.5-inch diameter. It's tapered at
the outboard end for dip-pole jibing. It weighs just 14 pounds! Visit
Hall's web store for details on ordering a lightweight, high-performance
carbon pole for your boat. http://www.hallspars.com
DAIMLERCHRYSLER NORTH ATLANTIC CHALLENGE
No boats have finished since Skip Sheldon's Zaraffa did so last Saturday,
but Snow Lion and Tempest are closing in on Helgoland, which must be
rounded before the final leg to Cuxhaven. Tidal current in the river Elbe
can run at more than 4 knots and negotiating a foul tide takes considerable
skill. Tonight Snow Lion and Tempest may just hit the Elbe entrance for
the last of the flood tide to carry them at a fast pace up to the finish
line. If they miss the flood they will have to seek shallow waters at the
edge of the river where the tide is slack, or even in places that have a
small counter-current. This will be a breathtaking time needing maximum
concentration, for a "touch" on the mud on a falling tide could mean a boat
becoming stuck for hours until the flood returns. After a pause in
Cuxhaven, the boats will go on up the Elbe to Hamburg and the terrific
welcome at the Race Village prepared in honour of the fleet.
In the North Sea, northerly winds continue to provide ideal sailing
conditions for the growing number of DaimlerChrysler yachts coming from the
Atlantic. The fleet is now spread over more than 1,000 miles and for the
majority still west of Great Britain, the outlook for the next several days
is for light, generally north-westerly winds, though these could give way
to variables and some calms. On board Bank von Bremen, 350 miles from Fair
Isle, skipper Karol Smotawa and his crew may be glad of the light
conditions. Back in the gales of June 27, their main boom and spinnaker
boom were broken, and the crew worked hard to make repairs. Usually
on-board repairs will stand up to light or moderate winds, but more gales
are a test they prefer not to have. - http://www.dcnac.de
MIDWEST WAKE-UP CALL
We received the following stats from Dierk Polzin regarding participation
at the US Sailing Youth Champs held last week in Milwaukee, WI.
Number of Lasers entered: 35
Number of Club 420's entered: 52
Number of local competitors: Minnesota -1; Michigan - 1; Wisconsin - 0
(Editor's note- In that the Youths is an invitation-only event based on
each sailor's previous achievements, it appears that a few states have a
little work to do in the area of junior sailing development)
Briggs Swift Cunningham II, 96, a renowned competitive sailor and
sports-car racer, died July 2, 2003 at his home in Las Vegas from
complications of Alzheimer's disease.
Perhaps best known in sailing as the inventor of the "Cunningham," a device
that allows one to adjust the tension on the luff of a sail, Cunningham
also skippered Columbia to win the 1958 America's Cup. Additionally,
Cunningham was very established in car racing circles, becoming the first
American to challenge the Europeans in the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1950. He
helped form the Automobile Racing Club of American (ARCA) in 1934, was a
founding member of the Sports Car Club of America, and was member number
one (the member with the longest seniority) of the New York Yacht Club.
He is survived by his wife of 40 years, Laura (nee Cramer) of Las Vegas,
son Briggs S. Cunningham III of Danville, KY., daughters Lucie McKinney of
Green farms, CT., and Cythlen Maddock of Palm Beach, FL., and step-sons
Bill Elmer and Joe Elmer, nineteen grandchildren and thirty one great
grandchildren. Services will be Aug 8, 2003 at 2:30 p.m. at Pacific View
Cemetery, 3500 Pacific View Dr, Corona Del Mar, CA. In lieu of flower's,
it is requested that donations be sent to the Alzheimer's Association.
* In the Swedish Match Cup Women's Class, semifinal racing was held in the
late afternoon with Marstrand's own Malin Kallstrom sweeping past Denmark's
Annette Strom 3-0, while the world's top ranked match racing skipper Marie
Bjorling of Sweden needed all five matches to upend the recently crowned
women's match racing world champion, Malin Millbourn of Sweden. The
best-of-five all-Swedish women's final will be held on Saturday afternoon,
* Regarding the news yesterday of a rating change to Admirals Cup entrant
Ker 55 Aera, the design office of Ker Associates submitted to Scuttlebutt
that the RORC rating office had in fact received images of the cut-away bow
profiles for the 55 going back as far as the end of last year, and had
confirmed to them in writing that the images were received but were
overlooked at the time. It was these images that allegedly were missing at
the time the original rating for Aera had been issued.
* Brazillian National Champions Graziella Tussatto and Rafael Gagliotti, of
Sao Paulo won the Day Sailer North American Championship last week after
five races on Cross Lake, near Shreveport, LA. The event endured
temperatures in the 90's and a heat index reportedly over 100, with the
effects of nearby severe thunderstoms forcing the abandonment of the last
day's racing. Complete results at http://www.daysailer.org/2003_results.htm#NAC
* Corpus Christi Yacht Club hosted the 2003 Laser North American
Championship June 28 - July 1 on Corpus Christi Bay, Texas. 77 Lasers and
53 Radials competed. Top Finishers -
Laser: 1. Michael Bullot, NZL (37); 2. Andrew Campbell, USA (55); 3. Mark
Mendelblatt, USA (63); 4. Bernard Luttmer, CAN (91); 5. Andrew Childs,
CAN(92); Top Youth - Alex Steele, CAN
Laser Radial: 1. Todd Hawkins, USA (58); 2. T.J. Tullo, USA USA (89); 3.
James Liebl, USA (89); 4. Patrick Curran, USA (99); 5. Ryan Eric Minth, USA
(106); Top Female - Roberta Steele, USA
* Christophe Ribot and Katie Pettibone of Team Miami Catamarans recently
became the first official team to cross the Atlantic Ocean's Gulf Stream on
an Inter 20 racing catamaran in record time. The event, called The Gulf
Stream Challenge, consists of sailing from Miami Beach, FL to the Bahamas
and back in the shortest time possible. The outcome: Ribot and Pettibone
set a reference time of 15 hours 1 minute round trip. Their hope is to get
other teams interested in taking the Gulf Stream Challenge, and to turn it
into a regular event. Ribot looks to shave at least 5 hours off their time
during a second attempt later this summer. - Curtis & MaggiLu (Lupe) Tucker
CALENDAR OF MAJOR EVENTS
* July 18: The International Yacht Restoration School is hosting this
year's summer fundraiser at their Newport, RI harborfront campus to support
their academic programs. For more information, call IYRS at 401-848-5777 or
on-line at http://www.iyrs.org
On July 4, 1776, the United States claimed its independence from England
was born. This Friday is July 4th, and as is customary in the US,
Scuttlebutt will be taking a day off to commemorate this event. Look for
Scuttlebutt to return on Monday.
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 Nancy Samovar: The most exciting part of the start of the Transpac
race to Hawaii was watching the boats drift towards each other and stuff up
to avoid hitting the pin end. Given the 1.5-knot current and the lack of
wind I plotted this fleet's course to the Marquesas with an ETA of November
15. Good luck!
* From Arnold Baily: Any chance we can get the dinner menus of the Transpac
fleet that just started? Cal 40's and cruising Aloha Division racers? My
guess is this group can appropriately match their wines with their meals.
Probably even are using flush toilets. If/when the sleds pass them after
their head start, eating freeze-dried food and peeing off the stern pulpit,
it will certainly be some kind of eerie time-warp moment.
Why is it that at class reunions you feel younger than everyone else looks?