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SCUTTLEBUTT 1473 - December 8, 2003

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The new (America's) Cup Village (in Valencia) won't be ready for tenants
until the fall of 2004 at the earliest (with a projected completion date of
2005 for the entire project) and, for that reason, everybody is looking for
an alternative place to train. About thirty miles north of Valencia, the
small port of Castellón de la Plana (about 150.000 inhabitants) really
believes in its chances. Even if efforts are necessary to host teams with
over 100 people each, Castellón has already experienced the America's Cup
in 1999 when the Spanish and French crew joint trained there.

Caixa Galicia owner Vincente Tirado affirms he was contacted by half of the
future challenger. And in particular by Oracle BMW Racing. "The American
team will arrive by the end of 2004 with 350 people", he said. "It will
have to find a place to settle, but also residences and schools for the
children ... and this work already started". - Cup in Europe website citing
Masmar, full story:

At 21:52 local time on Thursday 4 December (01:52 UTC 05 December), the
first yacht of ARC 2003 (Atlantic Rally for Cruisers) finished, smashing
the course record by several hours. Spirit, one of the two Volvo 60's
taking part in the ARC, skippered by Hamish Oliphant and his crew of 15,
steamed across the ARC finish line under full sail at 18 knots.

With a finish time some 10 hours ahead of the previous ARC course record,
Spirit now holds the new ARC course record of 11 days, 13 hours, 12 minutes
and 20 seconds. The crew remarked that their top speed had been 21.3 knots
surfing down a wave, although one crew member commented that the only soft
surfaces on the boat were the crew's backsides! It seems the excitement of
racing such a yacht across the Atlantic Ocean also means a trade off in the
galley department and several cries of joy were heard from the few that had
missed fresh fruit and vegetables for the last 11 days as the welcome fruit
baskets were loaded aboard.

Event website:

Curmudgeon's Comment: Am I the only one who thinks that a new elapsed time
record for the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers sounds like an Oxymoron?

Olympic and Team NZ America's Cup sailor Dan Slater faces suspension or a
complete ban from the sport after being found guilty of unsportsmanlike
behaviour. It is understood Slater emailed sailors competing at the
yachting world championships in Cadiz in Spain to gang up on another New
Zealand sailor, believed to be fellow Laser sailor Andrew Murdoch, to
reduce his Olympic qualifying prospects.

Murdoch finished seventh and qualified New Zealand a spot in Athens. Slater
will find out his fate just before Christmas but the penalty could be
anything from permanent suspension from the sport to a warning. - NZ

There is still time to order the 2004 Ultimate Sailing calendar and caps,
t-shirts, books, note cards, screensavers, and posters for all the active
or arm-chair sailors on your list.
Check out the details at

(The following excerpt is from Part Two of The Daily Sail's interview with
Mr. Race Officer, Peter Reggio.)

Reggio is clearly excited about the prospects for having the America's Cup
in Europe. "I think having it in Europe is going to be monstrous, I really
do. The Europeans really care about sailing. From that standpoint it's
going to be spectacular for the event itself. It's going to be much more
spectator friendly. Number one, the breeze is going to be there, and number
two the Alinghi people and the ACM people are committed to making it a
visible and accessible event."

Reggio is also hugely enthusiastic about the 'pre-regattas', not just
because that's more race management up for grabs. Of the San Francisco Moet
Cup he says "one of the umpires told me that he went to a media event that
happened to be a sail boat race." - The Daily Sail, full story:

Coral Reef YC - Normally there would be 18-20 Star-boats on Biscayne Bay
for the annual Commodore Cup regatta, but because US Star teams are gearing
up for the Olympic Trials in March and it is too cold in Europe to sail
right now, there were 46 boats on the starting line this for this event.

A cold front went through Miami Friday night and not only was it cold for
the initial races - 65 degrees, which is cold for Miami - but it was also
fairly windy with 18-25 knots from the Northwest. This caused a few
breakdowns and carnage in the fleet, with a scattering of broken masts,
sail problems and other sorts of casualties.

The final day delivered a milder 10 knots of breeze for the last race of
the three race series. After two general recalls, race three got underway
but eight boats picked up Black Flags, including Mark Reynolds and the
regatta leader, Paul Cayard.

Final standings: 1. John MacCausland/ Brad Nichol USA; 2. Hans Spitzauer/
Adreass Hanakamp, Austria; 3. Peter Bromby/ Rick Peters BER; 4. George
Szabo/ Mark Strube, USA; 5. Ross MacDonald/ Kai Bjrorn,CAN.

Sorry - but there were no results posted on the event website at our
distribution time:

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* Howard Hamlin, two-time world champion in the Aussie 18's and former 1999
505 world champ, prides himself on being prepared and having his boat ready
to race, and has a special tool box that he take with him when he flies to
regattas. Racing skippers will be interested a story on the West Marine
website that itemizes the tools Hamlin considers essential to keep in his
special traveling tool box.

* The Dragon Class will be celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2004.
Dragons are the largest international class of three-man keelboat in the
world, with more active competitive boats than any other. It is
particularly strong in Europe, including the UK and Ireland. The Dragon was
originally designed as a cheap alternative to the larger yachts of its day
and went on to be selected as the keelboat class for no less than seven
Olympic Games. Today, more than two thirds of the boats at a typical
international regatta are less than 10 years old. -

* Russell Coutts could win New Zealand's premier sports award. New rules to
clarify who is eligible for the prestigious Halberg Awards have opened the
door for Coutts and other New Zealanders competing for other nations. The
Halberg Trust has decided sportspeople must hold a New Zealand passport, be
a New Zealand citizen or have New Zealand residency to be eligible for the
individual awards of sportsman, sportswoman and coach. Coutts was a
finalist for the sportsman of the year in 1995 and 2000 for his role as
skipper of Team New Zealand. - Sunday Star Times,,2106,2750756a1823,00.html

* The West Marine Pacific Cup - the Fun Race to Hawaii - has over 59 boats
signed up so far. The two maxi's are Pegasus 77 and Magnitude 80, three
Transpac 52's and three 1D35's so far. On June 28 the smaller boats will
start their 2070 mile trip to Hawaii. -

The single-handed trans-Atlantic fleet of IMOCA Open 60s is separated into
two by hundreds of miles, but the front-runners are separated by just a
matter of miles and places are changing almost hourly. Watching the
developing weather ahead, we will probably see the divided fleet staying
divided and the next 24 hours will be crucial to the outcome of the race,
as the boats position themselves for tackling the depression north of the
Cape Verdes.

"Yesterday morning we finally cleared the Doldrums and moved into a steady
but gentle beat to windward in flat seas, the vicious squalls have gone and
are replaced with relative stability," reported Mike Golding on Ecover.
"This has allowed me the luxury of three consecutive 40 minute sleeps which
felt like a full night and certainly recharged the batteries. This together
with a brunch comprising of cereal, fresh fruit, bacon and eggs all washed
down with a Vitamin drink (slightly pointless) and a glass of wine (not at
all pointless) and I was feeling like a million dollars.

"The stability of the current weather does not mean that we are not all
constantly making sail changes, even a change as small as one knot of
breeze can warrant a sail change. When this happens on an hourly basis the
workload can remain very intense. Missing a change will certainly lose
miles against the opposition. Getting the change timing perfect will at
best hold your position. One thing is now very clear to me, the best of the
well developed last generation boats in the IMOCA fleet are still very,
very fast and for those of us blessed with new boats for the Vendee, we
cannot expect to get it easy against the best of the current generation of
60's," Golding concluded.

Standings at 1700 GMT on December 7: 1. Mike Golding, 2524 miles from
finish; 2. Vincent Riou, 16.6 miles from leader; 3. Jean Pierre Dick 25.7
mfl; 3. Alex Thompson 34.4 mfl; 5. Sébastien Josse, 42.6 mfl.

The first entry deadline for Terra Nova Trading Key West 2004, presented by
Nautica, is Wednesday, Dec. 10. Avoid the late fee and submit your entry
today. America's premiere regatta starts Jan. 19 in sunny, warm Key West,
Florida. Information, forms, and past results:

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 Maggie McCormick: The Book List is Awesome! Three cheers to John
Drayton for starting the thread and three more to you for making it a feature.

* From Enrico Ferrari (edited to our 250-word limit): Mari Cha IV may be
sponsored by someone who has more money than most but it is evident that
there is a driving force behind the program that is insistent on pushing
the envelope. This type of behavior is just good R and D for all of us and
the owner should be given kudos for his contribution to the science of sailing.

All the hardware, navigation aids, sails, lines, are all state of the art
and will assist making the production boats of the future better... If they
work out well on this large innovative design. There is always a risk in
new ventures but after seeing the ambitious schedule publish in 'Butt 1472
I am sure this owner is organized with a serious agenda and a dedicated
crew. A race program of this size and scope is a huge undertaking both
financially and organizationally.

It will be fun to see this monster hull against the speedsters like Alpha
Romeo and other maxis. I hope Mari Cha can salvage line honors due to the
huge investment, but it will be fun to see them compete boat for boat. The
rating negotiations will make or break the trophy collection process but
this is a line honor effort and an honest effort to be the best at
mono-hull racing ever. Maybe the 135'(?) former America's Cup contender
from NZ will come out to play too?

* From Mark Steinbeck: How about that rule 36! It looks like Boat A gets a
"gift" second chance because of the general recall, since an incident that
results in "serious damage" can't be cleared with penalty turns. (Rule 44.1)

I wonder if a sea lawyer could protest Boat A for a breach of Rule 3
(Acceptance of the Rules) since by taking penalty turns in a case where the
rules call for retirement Boat A was not "accepting the penalties imposed
... under the rules". (Rule 3(b)) Seems kind of weak to me, but it wouldn't
surprise me to see it happen.

* From Tom Donlan: Re the rules quiz in Scuttlebutt 1472, in which a boat
that violated a Part 2 rule before a start and caused serious damage had
its sin washed away by a general recall, and even went on to win the
restarted race. This authoritative interpretation by the ISAF apparently
has been around since 2001, which only means it should be removed all the
more quickly.

How about rule 44.2, which says that if a boat "caused serious damage or
gained a significant advantage in the race or series by her breach, she
shall retire." That means sail home, don't wait around except to help the
boat you hit. And how about rule 69, prohibiting a "gross breach of a rule
or of good manners or sportsmanship?" It's certainly the latter two.

* From Franck Pellerin: With all due respect, I would like to submit that
the Rules Question put in Scuttlebutt 1472 leads me to a different
conclusion. The fact has been found that boat A was in the process of
completing a 720° Turns Penalty when the RC signalled a general recall.
Therefore, boat A was in the process of breaking Fundamental Rule 3 -
Acceptance of the Rules for not retiring as required by the last sentence
of rule 44.1. Furthermore, I submit that breaking Fundamental Rule 3 calls
for the consideration of rule 69 and, if so indeed, rule 36 directs that
boat A be penalized for her breach of rule 44.1 in the original race. I
agree with the balance of the decision which calls on RC to make sure that
redress proceedings are exercised under rule 60.

Curmudgeon's Comment: Lest there be any mistake, the ruling in "Butt 1472
came from the ISAF website:`GXks5BsOe9?7vTvOOQY12`?cxgiicj/DJfoBSia

* From Mac Kilpatrick: I, like Chip, am interested in more details
regarding the Rule 69 infringements, for the same reasons. It also helps
all of us monitor the direction the sport is taking (via these precedents).
If not publicly published, would you mind at least letting Chip and I know
what really happened?

Curmudgeon's Comment: Sorry, but the only information we have about the
four Argentinean sailors who had their eligibility suspended for Gross
Misconduct was published in Scuttlebutt 1469.

Misers are difficult to live with but they make wonderful ancestors.