SCUTTLEBUTT 1515 - February 10, 2004
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TROPHEE JULES VERNE
The first target for the two giant multihulls trying to break the Jules
Verne record for the fastest circumnavigation is the dash to the equator.
American Steve Fossett admitted that his 125ft catamaran, Cheyenne, did not
have the optimum 'sling-shot' conditions when it left the start-line in
Ushant, France, on Saturday morning.
After dawn yesterday, Fossett's crew were steaming along at an average of
17 knots, which helped pull Cheyenne's average speed up to 13 knots for its
first 2.5 days at sea. That put the boat some 200 miles west of Cape St
Vincent in Portugal yesterday evening.
Oliver de Kersauson's 112ft trimaran, Geronimo, did not start until Sunday
evening in its pursuit of the same 64-day eight-hour record set by Bruno
Peyron's Orange a year ago. Picking the optimum weather window is a key to
a successful start to a circumnavigation. "This is not a huge, wide-open
door," noted De Kersauson of the condition he chose to set off in.
By the weekend, this pair could be joined by Peyron's new, more powerful,
124ft Orange II. It will be re-launched tomorrow and Peyron is primed to
go. Peyron can be patient before relaunching Orange II following a re-fit
after its December launch and initial trials. He knows that its smaller,
lighter, less powerful predecessor is the record holder and that Jules
Verne record attempts have, historically, only a 30 per cent success rate.
- Excerpts from a story by Tim Jeffery in the Daily Telegraph, full story:
* Steve Fossett reported at 1710 GMT Monday that Cheyenne's average speed
from the start was improving slightly to 12.92 kts, leaving the 125' cat
still some 300+ nm behind the actual distance traveled by record-holder
Orange (2002) in the same time. - www.fossettchallenge.com/
* Olivier de Kersauson was keen to stress that: "This is first and foremost
an attempt at a start. If we can find the trades in a respectable time,
we'll carry on. If not, we'll head for home, so we have nothing to lose. At
1300 GMT Monday, Geranimo had averaged 18.57 knots speed since the start. -
(Following are two excerpts from a story by Gary Fallensen in the Rochester
Democrat and Chronicle about Yngling sailor Cory Sertl. It highlights the
difficulties of combining an Olympic campaign with parenthood.)
Sertl is a mother of two children - daughter Katja is a 9-year-old
fourth-grader and son Nicholas is a 7-year-old in the second grade - which
might contribute to her equilibrium, if not her perspective. Preparing for
an Olympic Trial is time-consuming. Sertl was away from Jan. 2 to 12 and 19
to 30 before leaving again Tuesday for 20 more days. There are guilt pangs
when you are there and your husband, Mark, and children are here.
"My kids want to be with me," says Sertl, who married Mark after the 1988
Games. "You know from experience with other people that that might not be
forever. "My son flat-out told me he doesn't want me to win." Victory would
mean another six-month commitment for mom, culminating Aug. 13 to 29 at the
* Mark acknowledges that being apart from the kids is "one of the toughest
things for her. The girls she's sailing with are single. But there are moms
on some of the other boats that she can talk to." Besides, he adds, "they
get a lot of mom when mom's home, and they realize this isn't a forever
thing. There's going to be an end, whether it's in three weeks or six months."
Cory bemoans "just missing all the normal family stuff, just them coming
home from school and telling you about their day. When I do come home now
all the other stuff I'd do - paddle (tennis), friends, volunteering - is
put on hold." She is mom, and nothing but mom.
Sertl says she is looking forward to teaching and sharing sailboat racing
with her children. But she still has some of her own races left. Sixteen,
at least. "It's going to be a long series," (sailing coach Scott) Ikle
predicts. "It's going to be a test of wills." Being a mom might come in
handy in that department, too. Full story: http://tinyurl.com/3catu
OLYMPIC TRIALS TECHNICAL SUPPORT
Harken and Team McLube have joined forces with local distributor Sailing
Services to offer complete regatta support at the US Olympic Trials in
Miami. Brooks Jones will make last minute hardware deliveries, while
Harken's Tech Team will be on-the-water and at the regatta sites helping
with any technical needs. Sailing Services, Harken, McLube and our US
Olympic hopefuls make an unstoppable team. See you there. To contact
Harken's Tech Team: http://www.harken.com/scuttlebutt/sc-miami.htm
* At 1300 hours Monday, Jean Luc van den Heede's 84-foot aluminum cutter
Adrien was back in the Atlantic Ocean, 5,923 miles from the finish. Having
covered 288 miles in the last 24 hours he is now 26 days and 12 hours ahead
of the 'westabout' singlehanded global record presently held by Philippe
Monnet. - http://www.vdh.fr/gb/
* AC Fund Raising: The Luna Rossa Marketing/Sponsorship Team, (leaded by
Giacomo Ovidi and Luca Paderni) announced that they will concentrate their
efforts on the international markets. The new structure, built by Patrizio
Bertelli count on contacts made with some multinationals companies to
secure the necessary funds. If it doesn't work, the syndicate will
appointed a company which specialises in raising funds of the magnitude
needed to participate in the America's Cup.
* Tim Kent will be honored as Anniversary 'Sailor of the Year' at the tenth
annual Milwaukee Community Sailing Center's Sailor's Ball on March 6. In
the past year he finished second in the grueling 28,000-mile world
circumnavigation race, Around Alone in his boat, Everest Horizontal.
Previous honorees have been Jere Sullivan, Dawn Riley, Terry Kohler, Bill
Schanen, Bill Pinkney, Peter and Olaf Harken, Peter Barrett, Gary Jobson
and Buddy Melges. - www.sailingcenter.org
*Twenty-five teams came from all over the New England, New York, New
Jersey, and Ohio to compete in InterClub Midwinters at the Severn Sailing
Association, Annapolis MD. Twenty races in total (ten in each division)
were completed in blustry Northwest winds, but the short fetch off the
Naval Academy breakwater kept the seas relatively flat. Final results: 1)
Chad Demarest / Whitney Besse & Steve Kirkpatrick / Jane Kirkpatrick, 95
pts; 2) Jesse Falsone / Nancy Gilreath & Simon Strauss / Lisa Pline, 98
pts; 3) Mike Ingham / Liz Bower & Wayne Pignolet / Barb Evans, 113 pts.
* San Diego sailor Andrew Campbell, presently a sophomore at Georgetown
University, has been chosen to receive the inaugural Linda Elias Sailing
Scholarship for 2003 in recognition not only of his achievements but his
contributions to the junior program at San Diego Yacht Club and to youth
sailing in general. The Deed of Gift specifies that the grants may be
presented to students, other foundations, men or women, persons that have
fared well with their own accomplishments, have assisted someone else to
advance their abilities or have enabled others to experience the sport of
sailing." Campbell qualified on all counts.
* More than 1100 new jobs and $58 million filled the sails of Manukau's
(New Zealand) economy during the America's Cup. A report for the Ministry
of Tourism found Manukau's share of the $497m benefit to the Auckland
region was at least $58m. The estimated benefits are considered
conservative because nearly 18 per cent of Manukau residents work in the
hospitality industry and Auckland International Airport is in the city.
This means there would be other spin-offs that can't be measured. -
ALWAYS A STEP AHEAD
When you attend big regattas like Key West Race Week and Miami OCR, you
quickly find out what's hot and what is not. It was instantly obvious that
the Curmudgeon's glowing descriptions of the Camet sailing shorts have not
fallen on deaf ears. Camet shorts were everywhere. And although everyone
loves the advantages of the breathable fast drying Supplex and the
reinforced Cordura seat patch, what's pushed them over the top is the fact
that they look so bitchin'. Check out the web site for a complete line of
Padded Shorts and Pants, Coolmax shirts, Breathable Polo Shirts.
THE COMMODORE EXPLAINS
(In Scuttlebutt 1514 we carried a story about the decision of the Cruising
Yacht Club of Australia to use switch from the IMS handicap rule to the IRC
rule to determine the overall winner of the 2004 Sidney Hobart Race. CYCA
Rear Commodore Hickman explains why that change was made.)
"We now find ourselves in a position where IMS has declined in popularity
and support, thus rendering it inappropriate as the handicap category from
which the Overall Winner of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race is determined.
"The IRC rule has gained in popularity and support in Australia and
overseas just as IMS's own position has been declining. Whilst the IRC rule
has now has gained international recognition through the International
Sailing Federation (ISAF), it was not designed as a rating rule for grand
prix boats and is not an open and transparent rating system. Thus the CYCA
does not see it as a long term replacement for IMS as the handicap category
for the Tattersalls Cup.
"In the absence of a broadly accepted grand prix rule for 2004, the CYCA
finds itself in state of transition. Much work is being done on the
development of a new rating rule, but that work will not be completed in
sufficient time for it to be assessed for its suitability for the 2004
race. Indeed, unless progress is made quickly, it may be difficult to
contemplate applying the new rule for 2005.
"Against that background, the CYCA Board has determined to apply the IRC
rule on a year-by-year basis until a suitable alternative is identified.
Given the popularity of the IRC rule, and the large number of boats both in
Australia and overseas with IRC certificates, we could well see the entire
fleet in this year's 60th Race competing for an Overall Win and the honour
of having their name inscribed on the historic Tattersalls Cup." - CYCA
Rear Commodore Roger Hickman.
THE GOOD OLD DAYS - Peter Harken
The following year from the 505 launch I coincidently found in a Madison
junkyard while looking for car parts for my 51 Chevy convertible, an old
really beat-up, broken in the back FD lying upside down on a bunch of old
car stuff and junk. My eyes went wide, "Wow, another hot boat and an
Olympic class at that, wow, and it's free, what luck!" Did we always look
through rose colored glasses at that age? Always, and without one sense of
reality anywhere in our brain!
Needless to say it took a friend of mine and I all summer evenings and
weekends after our day jobs to restore this battered wooden cold molded
former beauty plus having to make all her fittings. During the restoration
work we found her builders plate and again, "wow!", she was US FD 1, the
first FD in the USof A, holy cow, what a treasure! The wreckage of the cold
molded hull was beyond restoring to a varnish job so we coated it with one
layer of light fiberglass cloth with black impregnated resin.
The deck was painted a light green and the other wood trim including mast
and boom varnished. We proudly launched "Black Beauty", that fall, at the
UW Hoofer Sailing Club with the 505 and, classes, what classes, spent
untold afternoons racing these two magnificent original war horses around
the lake. What a hoot!
Did I graduate? Yeah, later than sooner, I had my priorities you know!
Curmudgeon's Comment: Peter Harken is a true "American Treasure" and we
have just installed him as the Fleet Captain of the Scuttlebutt Sailing
Club. BTW - the new SSC membership cards are now available online:
ACURA SORC REGISTRATION DEADLINE FEBRUARY 18th
Register online now and reserve your spot at the 2004 Acura SORC, Feb.
25-29, in beautiful South Beach, FL. Come to South Beach where you and the
crew will enjoy nightly festivities at the Miami Beach Marina, the
Clevelander and Lost Weekend! - http://www.acurasorc.com
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 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 Patrick Festing-Smith: Honest to god, what is with all the kafuffle
about that Laser Advertisement? Chip Johns, President of Vanguard already
sent a letter to scuttlebutt readers explaining the concept. If you can't
use a little tongue in cheek humor in advertising to attract the consumer's
attention, then you might as well eliminate advertising all together. If we
dictate what a comedian, politician or corporation can/cannot say then
he/she really wouldn't be very good. Our sport and economy doesn't exist
without advertising. Well done Chip and Vanguard! I appreciate your ads and
support of publications like Scuttlebutt.
* From Edward Trevelyan: The idea put forth by some that the very
consideration of "starting line white" is somehow "un-Corinthian" is
ludicrous. Sailors will do what they can, quite understandably, to exploit
the weaknesses inherent in sailboat racing's chosen method of starting. Tom
Ehman correctly points out that race committees can and must solve the
problem by setting square lines and devising new race management strategies
(gate starts again?). In the meantime, spare the guilt trips for those who
favor white boats (even if they don't "like" the color).
* From John Stevens: The 505 class has one of the most colorful set of
boats alive and manages well over 100 boats on a single line with no
recalls, black flags, etc. It's called Rabbit Starts and it works great -
no matter what color boat you have (and some are outrageous). The 505s want
to go sailing, not sit around luffing and waiting for flags and horns - oh,
and thank god ISAF doesn't get in our way much!
* From Kenny Robertson: To those arguing about hiding on starting lines and
whether or not it is cheating to have a white boat specifically not get
caught on a start line. Consider this - you are in the middle of a crowded
line, boats to windward and leeward of you, bows roughly level. Can you see
the ends of the line? Can you hell - unless there is a massive sag in which
case you are well behind the line anyway.
Pete Commette is right - when the guys around you go - you go. If you are
brave or have a visible transit you can be a bit ahead, but honestly how do
you know you are over or not? If the RO calls you - tough. If you are not
over now and again you are not trying hard enough Elvstrom said. The
corinthian spirit is about playing the game well, honestly and respecting
your competitors, but ulimately it is also about winning. To make excuses
about losing because somehow you are more honest than the rest of the fleet
rarely stands up to scrutiny.
* From: Philippe Herve (In response to Jim Champ on the white boat
comment,): Using a white boat may be seen to you as cheating. Not returning
when OCS is not cheating, it is called being disqualified. Have you ever
driven a red convertible? If you have, you know that when driving with the
flow of traffic at exactly the same speed as every car around you, you are
the one that will get picked up by the police for illegal speeding or other
random paper control.
If I was to sail again one design on a very crowded start line, I would
definitely have a boat of a color that match the rest of the fleet. Not to
cheat but to be sure that I am not arbitrarily picked up. I am convinced
that some highly visible boats are marked OCS simply because they stand
out, not necessarily because they cut the start line too early.
The day that start lines will be videotaped will be the day I will switch
back to a boat color that stands out from the fleet. And yes, I have worked
on race committee and I believe that I was always right in the calls I made
on OCS boats but I am unfortunately only human...
* From John C. Wade (edited to our 250-word limit): Recently there was a
discussion about the drift in competitor mentality from a Corinthian
attitude to a win-at-all-costs attitude. As one who has recently returned
to sailboat racing, after a near twenty year hiatus, I found this to be
true; at least it appeared to be more overt than before, especially in the
application of the Racing Rules of Sailing to disadvantage a competitor.
An article in Sailing World discussed the apparent need for the retention
of RRS 16.2, and the vagueness of 16.1. In the old NAYRU rules (IYRU) the
starboard tack boat, being the privileged vessel, also had the obligation
to hold her course and speed, so the burden vessel could know how to clear
her. Apparently the new rules are so poorly written, or intentionally
deficient, that this obligation of the right-of-way boat is removed, and
the starboard tack boat can "hunt " the port tack boat with the intention
of forcing them to foul or take some undue evasive action not anticipated.
There was a cry for a return to a more Corinthian approach to racing, but
it appears this is not the desire of the governing bodies. It would be very
simple to correct the RRS 16 by merely returning to the International
Navigation Rules (INR), which were the basis of the old NAYRU rules,
requiring the starboard tack boat to hold course and speed in a crossing
situation. I would be interested to hear the thoughts others about RRS 16.
* From Rex Riley: Chris Ericksen's editorial characterizes an unwarranted
capitalization of sailing as unnecessary. Reading Scuttlebutt is like
watching a train wreck in slow motion. The loss of Corinthian Sailing in
exchange for Commercial Sailing with its attendant juridical proceedings is
the most disappointing development in amateur sports. Is organized sailing
that inadequate? Is there time to step back and ask ourselves whether the
need exists to administrate this sport in NGO's in lieu of the organized
* From John Hammel (Re: Ken Legler's comments about line boats):
Practically speaking: in mid-Long Island Sound a 60+ foot depth requires a
minimum of 240 feet of scope. Combine that with a 1-2 kt current running
against a weak wind and you might have an anchored signal boat swing 100
yards forward or back, depending on which force wins: current or wind.
Using just one signal boat and a pin with very little scope requires art,
skill, luck, and a patient fleet to get a reasonably square line. The
thought of trying to line up 5 line boats just boggles the mind.
Being happy doesn't mean everything's perfect. It just means you've decided
to see beyond the imperfections.