SCUTTLEBUTT 1464 - November 24, 2003
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Alinghi skipper Russell Coutts is in favour of introducing more radical
boats for the next America's Cup. Following the announcement of the venue
of the next cup competition in Geneva on Wednesday, a draft copy of the
America's Cup-class rules will be presented at a media conference at the
successful venue, either Valencia, Lisbon, Marseille or Naples, on Thursday.
The rules set stringent design criteria and are revised after each regatta
by America's Cup management with input from the defender, challenger of
record and various other syndicates. It is understood the rules have been
adjusted slightly to allow boats to be lighter and have more sail area.
'There were really two options," Coutts said from Switzerland. "One was to
change the rule dramatically, which is what I was actually in favour of,
but not many others were. I wanted to have a more radical boat that would
be faster downwind and would sort of be a complete change. Most other
people felt they wanted to keep the boats the same which should, in turn,
save some costs - which is a benefit."
The cost of competing is the sticking point for potential challengers -
including Team New Zealand. "Certainly we would love to reduce the costs,"
Coutts said. "It is fair to say, though, that probably not everyone is that
focused on reducing the costs, but certainly Alinghi is."
He said it was too hard to say how much was needed for a campaign. But
regardless of cost, Coutts has heard of several possible challengers.
"Apparently there are three syndicates who are going to announce
immediately after the venue announcement," he said. "There seems to be at
least two strong syndicates from Italy forming, and there is talk of three
there. It sounds like there is a chance the Swedes will be back and there
will be a new challenge out of Spain. There are a few things in the rumour
mill right now." - Julie Ash, NZ Herald, full story: http://tinyurl.com/w8uy
TEAM NEW ZEALAND
After just seven months in the job, it appears the veteran round-the-world
sailor is on track to getting Team New Zealand on the start-line in 2007.
"In recent weeks we have had some serious success on the people front,"
Dalton said. "I'm really excited. Our design team, our engineers, our
statistical analysts, our new mast design team, new sail design team and
our new crew are a potent weapon. Everything is under control. It is a real
Dalton does not wish to announce his latest signings after traveling
globally in the hunt for sponsorship, sailors and designers. "I think it is
a mix of what we recognized as the best of the old with a whole lot of new
. . . which includes some grey hair as well."
His signings could be revealed next week when a design meeting is held in
Auckland. "There are people arriving from all over the world for that,"
Dalton said which suggests the new Team New Zealand will be more
multi-national. We'll have about 20 guys in town. We will set the
parameters of when we sail, when we don't sail, when we start going to the
tank, how we are going to run our testing, the weather - everything."
With most of the key people now secured, the challenge for Dalton remains
to find the estimated $150 million needed to reach the startline. "Money
wise I am starting to feel reasonably good," Dalton said. - NZPA, StuffNZ
website, full story: http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,2734390a1823,00.html
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SWEDISH MATCH TOUR
Australia's Peter Gilmour and his Pizza-La Sailing Team defeated Sweden's
Magnus Holmberg and the SeaLife Rangers 3-1 today to claim his record
eighth Nippon Cup title. This win was the fifth consecutive Nippon Cup
crown and second consecutive regatta win on the Swedish Match Tour,
following a victory at last month's Investors Guaranty Presentation of the
King Edward VII Gold Cup in Bermuda, for the veteran Australian match racer
and his crew of Mike Mottle, Yasuhiro Yaji and Kazuhiko Sofuku.
To get to the finals, both Gilmour and Holmberg had to 'survive' thrilling
five-match semifinals against Gavin Brady of the Oracle BMW Racing Team and
Dean Barker of the Omega Match Racing Team. In the petit-finals racing
Gavin Brady dismissed fellow Kiwi Dean Barker 3-0 to claim third place.
The next event on the Swedish Match Tour is the Congressional Cup in Long
Beach, Calif., April 19-24, 2004. - Shawn McBride, www.swedishmatchtour.com
Final Nippon Cup Standings:
1. Peter Gilmour, AUS/Pizza-La Sailing Team - $15,000
2. Magnus Holmberg, SWE/SeaLife Rangers - $9,000
3. Gavin Brady, Oracle BMW Racing - $7,000
4. Dean Barker, NZ/OMEGA Match Racing Team - $6,000
5. Paolo Cian, ITA/Riviera di Rimini Sailing Team - $5,000
6. Jesper Radich, Denmark - $4,500
7. Luc Pillot, FRA/Team Pillot - $3,500
8. Staffan Lindberg, FIN/Team Henri Lloyd - $3,000
9. Andy Green, GBR/Team Racing Green - $2,500
10. Yautaka Funazawa, Japan - $2,000
11. Eiichiro Hamazaki, Japan - $1,500
12. Takao Ninomiya, Japan - $1,000
Current Rankings - Swedish Match Tour:
1. Peter Gilmour, AUS/Pizza-La Sailing Team, 65
2. Magnus Holmberg, SWE/SeaLife Rangers, 45
3. Jesper Radich, DEN/Team Radich, 35
4. Dean Barker, NZ/Omega Match Racing Team, 24
5. Jesper Bank, Denmark, 20
= Chris Dickson, Oracle BMW Racing Team, 20
7. Gavin Brady, NZ/Oracle BMW Racing Racing, 15
8. Luc Pillot, FRA/Team Pillot, 14
9. Paolo Cian, ITA/Riviera di Rimini Sailing Team, 10
= Russell Coutts, Alinghi Team, 10
= Kelvin Harrap, New Zealand, 10
ROLEX FARR ONE DESIGN INVITATIONAL
The Atlantic's shifty conditions off Miami Florida were a constant
challenge in final two races of the inaugural Rolex Farr One Design
Invitational. With light, 5-7 knot Northeast wind at the beginning of the
day building to 12-14 knots, skippers and tacticians fought to gain an
advantage with every leg.
Massimo Mezzaroma and Antonio Sodo Migilori of Rome, Italy finished
strongly with a 3 -1 to convincingly win the 2003 Rolex Farr 40 North
American Championship. In the Mumm 30 class Jack Lefort of Stuart, Fla.
triumphed over the nine boat fleet on his Off the Gauge to win his fourth
Mumm 30 North American Championship. Peter Davidson won the Open Class on
his Farr 395 Shades of Gray. Geoff Stagg, President of Farr International,
presented Mezzaroma and Lefort with specially-engraved Rolex timepieces. -
Media Pro Int'l,
Final Standings: Farr 40 (11 races - 17 boats): 1. Nerone, Mezzaroma/Sodo
Migliori, Rome, Italy, 49; 2. Samba Pa Ti, John Kilroy, Los Angeles, Calif,
61; 3. Barking Mad, Jim Richardson, Boston, Mass., 65; Mumm 30 (9 boats):
1. Off The Gauge, Jack Lefort, Stuart, Fla, 26; 2. USA65, David Pyles,
Easton, Md., 42; 3. Tramp, Tom Ritter, Bloomfield Hills, Mich., 43.
West Marine has great gift ideas for your favorite boater or yourself! The
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* 2003 was a standout year for American racers and the time is fast
approaching to honor the top achievers. Have you cast your ballot for the
2003 Rolex Yachtsman of the Year? Nominations close November 30, 2003.
Submit yours at http://www.ussailing.org/Awards/rolex_link.htm
* Sir Robin Knox-Johnston announced that Fremantle will become a host port
stopover for the 2006 5-Oceans race (formerly called Around Alone). This
announcement comes hot on the heels of Fremantle also securing host port
status for the Clipper 2005 Round the World Yacht. Australian Tourism
Minister Bob Kucera said that because of these two events, the Western
Australian economy stands to gain a $3.3 million boost.
* Geronimo's attempt to break Playstation's Discovery Route record from
Cadiz to San Salvador has ended. Wind conditions deteriorated for the Cap
Gemini and Schneider Electric trimaran, and with no hope of breaking the
record, Olivier de Kersauson elected to return to Brest.
Vincent Porter from Harvard University won the light air, 16-boat ICSA/
Vanguard North American Men's Singlehanded Championship hosted by Eckerd
College. Final results: 1. Vincent Porter, Harvard, 74; 2. David Wright,
Kings Point, 82; 3. Clay Johnson, Harvard, 82; 4. Brian Haines, Stanford,
97; 5. Bill Self, Texas A&M, 105.
At the same venue, Anna Tunnicliffe of Old Dominion dominated the 16-boat
ICSA/ Vanguard North American Women's Singlehanded Championship: 1. Anna
Tunnicliffe. Old Dominion, 47; 2. Genny Tulloch, Harvard, 74; 3. Sloan
Devlin, Harvard, 97; 4. Jennie Philbrick, Harvard, 106; 5. Alexa Bestoso,
Navy, 115. http://www.collegesailing.org/
Looking at the resources Alinghi and Oracle are already putting into their
campaigns at this stage, being a new challenger even with Team New
Zealand's experience is daunting. "I think they are certainly a long long
way ahead of the game at the moment," says (TNZ's Dean) Barker of Alinghi
and Oracle. "It is a long way to go to sustain it but the advantage for
them is that they have the backing to sustain it for four years, because
the people cost is the highest. Every time you go sailing you have got to
have at least 50 people working, so it will certainly be an expensive
campaign. Effectively they have been up and running since late August,
before the Moet Cup."
The deadline for Team New Zealand's fund raising is April next year but
Barker is vague as to what they must have in place by then. "We know we're
not going to have the whole lot, but it depends on the way we fund the team
and which sponsors come on and where we sit at that point will determine
it." - Excerpt from an interview on The Daily Sail website,
Be thankful that you have ordered your 2004 Ultimate Sailing calendar.
T-shirts, caps, note cards, posters, book and custom prints are also
available. Check the Ultimate Sailing website for details:
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 nor a
bulletin board - you only get one letter per subject, so give it your best
shot and don't whine if others disagree.)
* From Tony Nunes: I read with interest the letter from Fred Hagedorn,
Chair, Olympic Sailing Committee, US Sailing, in today's Curmudgeon about
the funds from U.S. Sailing for our Olympic athletes. The amount of
budgeted ($1.4 million) is pathetically small for a nation of our size and
wealth. Can anyone tell me whether this is the total amount of Governing
body/Government support these athletes get? If so it is no wonder we
continue to have a hard time against the Europeans who I understand receive
far greater support. This is especially true as with such small support
these sailors are forced to go and live in Europe for a year or two just to
get the competition they need.
Are there any plans in the works to overhaul the system and set up a fund
(perhaps outside of U.S. Sailing) to raise and distribute money just for
Olympic campaigns? Does such a fund exist or am I missing something?
* From Magnus Wheatley With the debate raging on the discard rule and the
scuttlebutt flying about ISAF and box rules, one piece stood out like a
shining light in Butt 1463, so much so that I had to re-read it over and
over again. Gary Jobson is handling his terrible cancer with such dignity,
resolve and fortitude that he is an inspiration to us all. The man whose
voice first lit the flame of enthusiasm for the America's Cup in me (who
can forget the words "they're submarining"?) and whom in person is the most
self-effacing and charismatic man that I've ever met is on the ropes but
fighting back. I wish him well and a speedy recovery and fully expect his
dynamite commentary in 2007. Get well soon Gary, sailing needs you.
* From Larry Law: To Gary Jobson - In addition to myself - and surely
thousands of others - we want to wish you a rapid and complete recovery.
Not because you're a "Hall of Famer" or because you have added immeasurably
to the sport of sailing, but mostly just because you're a member of the
"brotherhood" of sailors world wide that respect and care about the members
of this special fraternity. From Sabots to Sleds, we look forward to your
being around for decades to come. God Speed
* From Malcolm McKeag: We need to differentiate between a strategic time
limit - such as 12 hours in a race expected to take no more than 24 hours -
and a tactical time limit - say 30 minutes after the first valid finisher -
being used to try and keep a multi-race programme rolling by not having to
wait for stragglers. In the former case, DNF seems a reasonable score
(especially if the SIs change RRS and make the DNF score equal either
number of starters, or number of starters plus one).
In effect, the boat has finished in last place. But if the wind dies during
a short race that is part of a series, real inequalities can result even
using that altered scoring. Another approach is to make the time-expired
score in such a case either one more than the score of the last valid
finisher (effectively bringing all the time expired boats up to the line
together, thus handing a bonus to all but one) or, more equitably, making
the time-expired score the average of all the available points: i.e last
valid finisher plus one plus number of starters divided by number of
starters minus score of last valid finisher. Easier to do than describe.
Say five boats out of 12 are DNF, last valid finisher being 7th. Each gets
points for 10th place. Not as good as spotting the change of weather and
shortening course, but perhaps better than crucifying all five.
* From Jim Champ: In 'Butt 1443 Cory E. Friedman asked, "What other sport
allows anything as ridiculous as throwouts?" Motor Racing. For exactly the
same reasons. In a contest where one is stretching the limits of mechanical
equipment, which inevitably has an element of luck, there is a good
argument for saying that the luck to finish every race is not the most
important thing that the contest should be testing. You may consider this
appropriate or inappropriate for Olympic racing, that's another argument.
* From Eric Faust: Given that nothing we write or say is likely to change
the decision ISAF has made to change the Olympic Regatta scoring system, I
would like to advocate a little "out of the box" thinking. In an effort to
award medals to the "best" sailors, I would suggest the gymnastics scoring
system, where you throw out your best and worst scores. Why reward the guy
who took a lucky flyer?
* From Pete Thomas: How does the change in the Olympic scoring system to
now not to employ a throw out race change the regatta strategy for the
competitors?" Why is this simple change to scoring such a big issue?
* From Big Mike Howard: It is with great sorrow to hear the news of the
passing of Fang. I had the pleasure of knowing Fang for 25+ years. We
enjoyed much of the worlds ocean's together over these years. Either as
ship mates or having him keep us honest during the many regatta's sailed
around the world. He was a man of his word and convictions. Always a story
to tell and a joke to keep the levity of the situation. As a ship mate you
knew your back was always covered.
He will be greatly missed by his family, friends and the sailing community
as a whole. It is people like Fang that make us keep throwing the dock
lines off and heading out to sea. Losing two Kialoa mates this year is not
an easy pill to swallow. I know Fang and Goose will be up there swapping
sea stories, having a beer and looking after us mortals who still set sail
across the oceans of the world. My condolences to his family.
* From Christian Fevrier (edited to our 250-word limit) I was present in
Australia to all the Little America's Cup challenges between 1987 and 1995.
I know well all these fantastic, generous men. I am sure that the decision
of the Sea Cliff YC was a terrible slap on their faces. And two new teams
were already at work for a new challenge.
The Little America's Cup was a fantastic world of creativity. When you have
seen C-Class catamarans passing in front of you at 23 knots with only 9
knots of breeze, you can feel in the deep of your heart the magical side of
the Little America's Cup. That name belongs to these men and only to them.
I must add that the official press release is totally wrong historically.
Article 1 of the Deed of Gift, amended by the Sea Cliff YC, on 23 February
1987, is crystal clear about the true name. It says: "The Trophy, which
shall be known as "The International Catamaran Challenge Trophy", shall be
preserved as a perpetual trophy for friendly international match racing
competition." More important, Article 13 specifies that this name will
continue to be used in the case there is no challenge after a four-year
period. The article says the new event "will be raced and won under the
terms of this Deed of Gift". The Little America's Cup nickname was given by
the late John Fisk. There is not a single mention of the name "Little
America's Cup" in the 8 pages of the Deed.
No man's life, liberty, or property are safe while the legislature is in
session. - Mark Twain (1866)