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SCUTTLEBUTT 1527 - February 26, 2004

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 focus. Corrections, contributions, press
releases, constructive criticism and contrasting viewpoints are always
welcome, but save your bashing and personal attacks for elsewhere.

New Zealander Russell Coutts has done the America's Cup a favour by winning
it for Alinghi and taking the next challenge to Europe. This is the view of
Englishman Mark Chisnell (41), a professional sailor and author. "There are
359 million people in Europe and the commercial market is bigger," Chisnell
said. "It should be easier for teams to get sponsorship and find finance."

Chisnell spent a lot of time in New Zealand during the America's Cup era.
"It was good when the cup came to New Zealand," he said. "It injected
public interest and was what the competition needed. "There was no interest
in San Diego. In Auckland, everyone was fanatical about it."

There was more interest in Europe today, Chisnell said. Sailing had become
a big professional sport in France and Italy. "The Spanish are very
enthusiastic about the sport because the king is involved." Chisnell
visited Valencia, Spain, before coming to New Zealand and is confident
preparations are on target for the next America's Cup. "We will see a lot
of boats on the water and huge spectator interest," he said.

He believes the current economic downturn in Europe could affect the number
of syndicates entered for the next America's Cup. "There will definitely be
more than five. I would be surprised if it is more than 15," Chisnell said.
"Ten challenges would be a good number." - Alistair McMurran, Otago Daily

The Transat Race organizers have announced that 40 boats representing seven
nations will be competing in their 3000 mile, single-handed Transatlantic
race from Plymouth, England to Boston, Massachusetts in May. "To have close
to 30 fully professional sponsored campaigns entered, combined with the
50-foot class, is a sign of the good health of this part of the sport of
sailing, and one could argue the sport of offshore sailing in general,"
said Mark Turner, CEO, Offshore Challenges Events.

The 60-foot ORMA multihull class will be fielding 12 entries - eleven of
the ORMA skippers are from France together with just one non-French
skipper, Giovanni Solidini from Italy. There are also 16 IMOCA 60-foot
monohull entries confirmed for the start. US competitor Rich Wilson, will
be racing his multihull Great American II. This takes the number of
competing 50-foot multihulls to six along with six 50-foot monohulls.

New website available shortly:

Who was it that won the intermediate division of the 1975 El Toro North
Americans but has since skyrocketed to the top of the sport? (Answer below)

* Cheyenne and crew rolled eastward throughout the day Wednesday, covering
447 miles (averaging 18.6 kts) over the past 24 hours as they headed away
from the longitude of Cape of Good Hope and set their sights on their next
milestone, the longitude of Cape Leeuwin on the SW corner of Australia,
some 3500 nm to the East. -

"The weather is looking good downstream for us and we are looking at a
series of 500 mile days if all goes well with the boat, so we anticipate
being able to catch up some more miles in the next week. Orange had a very
good run in the Pacific Ocean so having something in the bank is going to
be useful."- Brian Thompson on Cheyenne,

* At 23:17:42 UTC, on Wednesday, February 25th, the Cap Gemini and
Schneider Electric trimaran crossed the Jules Verne Trophy start line
between the Créac'h lighthouse on Ushant and the Lizard Point in Cornwall.
Olivier de Kersauson and his crew must therefore re-cross the same line
before 07:54:04 on 30 April to beat the time set by Orange in 2002 (of 64
days, 8 hours, 37 minutes and 40 seconds). -

* Bruno Peyron, skipper of the Orange II maxi-catamaran, has left Lorient
to head towards the Jules Verne Trophy starting line. The giant multihull
will probably start the record attempt early Thursday. -

What do the leading teams on Z-86s, Transpac 52s, Farr 40s and 29-ers have
in common? They've figured out that it's better to sail dry than sail wet.
The revolutionary DryshirtÔ is fast becoming standard gear on many of
today's most modern racing machines. With an SPF factor of 50, the
DryshirtÔ keeps you up to 2 ½ times better protected against harmful UV
than a wet tee shirt or a rash guard. No more soggy shirts. No more clingy
rash guards. What you'll notice most about this technical shirt...Is that
you don't notice it. 1-800-354-7245 or

(Following is an excerpt from a column by Dobbs Davis in the March issue of
Seahorse magazine.)

In Canada it is IRC which may be taking root. According to Mumm 30 owner
Kevin Brown, the IMS Association in Toronto has given him a mandate to
investigate a rule to replace IMS. He says, "I think there is a real place
for IRC here in North America. PHRF is in serious need to reworking and the
IMS is in steady decline, so I think the time right for us to move toward
the non-typeforming, more easily understood and more level playing field of
IRC. Interestingly, Brown had originally been in favor if IRM as an
alternative, but felt the rule too typeforming to work for their existing

The diversity of our keel boat fleet demands a rule like the IRC if there
is going to continue to be handicap racing for bigger boats, and we still
need a rule to separate the PHRF racers from the more serious programs," he
said. "If separation in not maintained it may well be one-design or nothing
in the years to come." -

On 11 February 2004, a panel of the ISAF Review Board met in Southampton,
Great Britain to hear the appeal of George Iverson versus the International
Star Class Yacht Racing Association. Iverson was represented by his
Attorney G. Macy Nelson, and was present in person. Iverson's appeal was
against the decision in 2001 of the Star Class to amend the existing weight
rule of the Class. The new rule effectively encourages less heavy crew and
allows heavier skippers.

Mr. Iverson is a large man of six foot five and a half inches in height. He
currently weighs 270 pounds and it was stated (although not admitted by the
Star Class) that he could not reduce his weight below 255 pounds. He is a
long-standing Life Member of the Class and successful owner of Star boats.
He prefers to crew and has never helmed a Star in a competition. He had
hoped to qualify to sail in the Olympic Games.

The Panel has considerable sympathy with the appellant who, along with
other heavy crew, has been adversely affected by the change in the weight
formula. The Panel does not consider however that the amendment goes so far
as to render him ineligible to compete, "ineligible" being defined in the
Oxford dictionary as "disqualified." It is clear that he can continue to
crew (albeit at a comparative disadvantage) with a lighter helm, or he can
elect to helm.

The Panel unanimously decides that the amendment was validly made in
accordance with the Rules of the Star Class and was approved by the ISAF
Council. The Panel therefore dismisses Mr. Iverson's appeal. - Excerpts
from the ISAF website, full story:

CALENDAR OF MAJOR EVENTS (Sponsored by West Marine)
Events listed at

* In the March issue of Seahorse magazine, Ivor Wilkins reported that a
recent survey taken found that nearly 70 percent of New Zealanders agreed
that there should be a Kiwi America's Cup challenge - 37 percent of them
felt strongly about it. Only 17% were neutral and 15% disagreed. -

* T2Productions will be producing a racing video each day at Acura SORC in
Miami that will be played each evening at the race parties and be featured
at the South Seas Hotel at the regatta party sponsored by the Avalon and
South Seas Hotels. Each show will air nightly on their website the same day
it is shot complete with live commentary, interviews, and sponsor

* The 2003 Atlantic Rally for Cruisers filled up quickly and World Cruising
Club, the event organizer, has already accepted the hundredth entry for
this year's event. ARC2004 will be the nineteenth starting from the host
port of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, where the fleet will begin to gather
during the summer months ready for their departure on Sunday 21 November.
For the fifteenth year the yachts will finish at Rodney Bay Marina,
St.Lucia, which will be hosts for a further four years as a result of a
contract recently signed at the end of ARC2003. -

* The Ellen MacArthur's new 75-foot B&Q trimaran arrived in Auckland (NZ)
nearly four weeks ago following her launch in Sydney (Australia) on the 8th
January. The boat has come out of the water for a few days for some work on
the daggerboard and some alterations to the rudder blades. For the delivery
trip to the UK, MacArthur will be sailing with B&Q's boat captain, Loik
Gallon and Mark Thomas as far as the Falkland Islands, after which she will
be on my own. -

* American sailor Kip Stone left for the UK from NZ, via Cape Horn as part
of his preparations for the the Singlehanded Transat Race this summer from
Plymouth to Boston. Sailing aboard 'Artforms' with him on his new Owen
Clarke designed 50' is BOC/ Around Alone veteran skipper Alan Nebauer who
has been Owen Clarke's project manager for this McConaghy Yachts built
swing keel carbon/nomex racer. Kip plans to take part in this year's Vendee
Globe if the rumours that 50' entrants might be re-invited to compete turn
out to be true.

* ISAF President Paul Hendeson continues with his seats on both the IOC
Women and Sport Working Group and the Sport and Environment Commission of
the International Olympic Committee (IOC). He has been elected to the
Executive Boards of both the Association of Summer Olympic International
Federations (ASOIF) and the General Assembly of International Sports
Federations (GAISF). IOC commissions are annually.

Ullman Sails congratulates John Lovell and Charlie Ogletree for winning the
Tornado Olympic Trials in Miami. Also, we congratulate the Ullman Sails
customers for their outstanding performances at the NOOD held in St
Petersburg, Florida and the J-105 Midwinters in Dana Point, California. At
the NOOD Ullman Sails finished 1st in the Melges 24, the J-105, the
Henderson 30, the Level 72 Raters, and tied for 1st in the SR-21 class. At
the J-105 Midwinters, "Bold Forbes" won all 5 races and Ullman Sails J-105
customers swept the top ten places. Visit us at

As for the sailor who won the intermediate division of the 1975 El Toro
North Americans, but who is now among the elite competitors in the sport,
the answer would be Paul Cayard. Click here for this flashback photo and

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 Mark Mendelblatt (edited to our 250-word limit): I am not surprised
to see that our Olympic trials system is being debated. It is a big topic
every four years and there are many different opinions on the issue. In my
last three tries, our system has been good and bad for me, but I have
always felt it was fair. There are a lot of races in our trials, and the US
has generally been very successful getting medals in past Olympics. But
maybe we should start thinking about creating a system that incorporates
both US sailors battling it out against each other in a high pressure
trials, and an element of international competition.

Because we will have to compete in the Olympics against the same
international sailors who we face all year in various world championships
and eurolymp regattas, it does make sense to weigh a US sailor's success in
these types of events with respect to their bid to get the Olympic berth in
their class. I suggest a two-regatta system. One regatta should be a major
international regatta such as the worlds. The other regatta should be
limited to US sailors and held in the same fashion as the trials are
currently held. Both regattas are counted as one series and throwouts are
figured in as well, say two from each regatta. This system, or a similar
one would still be a high pressure situation where peak performances are
necessary, but would also provide an international component to our
selection process.

* From Jeff Borland (In response to Fred Applegate): I don't see anything
wrong with the picture - I watched every race. Light and fluky? - maybe at
times, but on the Yngling course, PRO Hortensia Hacker cancelled the fluky
ones and ran 16 superb races in conditions from 5-6 through 15-18. US
Sailing's OSC representative, Dean Brenner (numerous time Olympic
aspirant), was on the water making sure the racing was fair. Now, about the
talent on the race course - Three Rolex Yachtswomen of the year, this
Year's Rolex Women's Keelboat Champion, (also skippers or crews from the
previous seven winners), four of the top 10 ISAF ranked Yngling teams,
America's Cup veterans, and so on. The coaches were top notch - names like,
Ed Baird, Andy Horton, and Ben Cesare. These teams were well prepared and
ready for anything.

This was absolutely the most exciting sailboat racing I have ever watched -
rarely was a race won by more than 20 seconds. Roundings were usually nose
to tail for the top 5 boats - at every rounding. Flyers didn't win races -
concentration, boat speed, teamwork and close-in tactics did. As to the
number of boats - small fleet racing experience will be a must for the
Olympics - there will be only 15 boats. I can't say what the conditions
will be in Athens - but I am absolutely sure that the US Yngling trials was
a fair regatta, and the winning team has a better than average chance of
medaling for the US in August.

* From Gail M. Turluck (In response to Martin Kiely): To lay the blame
solely on US Sailing for the turnout at our recent Olympic Trials does not
recognize the change that has occurred over the last 30 years. Sailors used
to aspire to be owners of and yacht clubs used to be proud to boast of
multiple fleets of Olympic Class boats. Class organizations don't lend
themselves to development the way they used to--based on fleet development
at yacht clubs and grassroots development of sailors (maybe to weaken US
development?). How can we look for a 50 boat Europe Trials when it's likely
there aren't 50 Europe Dinghies in the US? The Star is the only Class I'm
aware of which has a functioning Fleet system--and it's weaker than it used
to be.

It's up to sailors to start a fleet at their clubs and committing
(lifetime) to it. If yacht clubs seek the stature of turning out Olympic
sailors, they need to choose to host Olympic Class fleets. Yes, they'll
have other Classes to "feed in" and develop sailors. There aren't many
folks in sailing today, and particularly young enough to be thinking about
an Olympic run, to understand how the basis - through the yacht clubs and
the Classes - broke down and US Sailing has been looked to as the ultimate
provider since. Sailing doesn't get respect in the media, so, sponsors
don't jump up with their checkbooks. It s got to come from the bottom up.

* From Marielle Charette: I believe it goes without saying that the
dedication, talent, responsibility, and personal sacrifice involved in an
Olympic campaign far outreach anything that the "normal" individual will
have to endure in a "normal" career. But, Mr. Silvestri, to specifically
target our 'American kids' as failing to rise to that challenge is insulting.

As someone who has been privileged enough to be involved with a #1 US
Olympic class team and to build friendships with a number of other sailors
involved in the US Olympic classes, I can say unhesitatingly that these
athletes achieve a caliber of character and persistence that we should all
strive to emulate. Without question our foreign competitors have the
"support side better figured out" than US Sailing, but US Olympic class
sailors have demonstrated time and again that a gross lack of sponsorship,
media support, and resources have failed to prevent them from giving 110%
in order to be above the bar in more cases than not. Our 'American kids' do
it, and not only that, they do it well.

* From Peter Wykeham-Martin, General Manager, Royal Ocean Racing Club: I
would like to correct one comment made in the recent announcement by the
maxZ86 owners with regard to their proposed new circuit. Although the Rolex
Fastnet Race has size (max 100ft) and stability restrictions, it does not
have a speed limit.

* From Peter Hinrichsen, ISAF Measurement Committee and IM: Paul
Henderson's words "ISAF has produced a very sophisticated measurement
device…" means just that, ISAF is not taking credit for inventing gyradius
measurement, just that ISAF has produced a modern system for keel boats.
Gilbert Lamboley introduced swing tests for Finns, Ted Wells for the Snipe
both in 1971, and Bob Smither swung Lightnings in 1968. Since then Flying
Dutchmen, Tornadoes, 470s, Fireballs, Lasers, International 14s, 49ers
among others have been swung. The Finn and Europe dinghies will again be
swung in Athens by their measurers.

The Dragon class, started swing testing in 1986, the Germans swung Solings
in 1989 and the Star class had a yaw swing test in the 1970s. Six 3.4 ton
Stewart 38s were swung in 1987, and IMS considered it, so even keel boat
swing tests have been around for many years. What we have done is introduce
modern electronics to the swing testing of the Ynglings and adapted a
technique well known to Naval architects for swinging tank test models.
This test and has been shown to be precise, accurate and reproducible.
Gilbert Lamboley was very complimentary about these developments when I
sent him the report. Gyradius has been demonstrated to have an effect on
boat speed of keel boats, and it is well documented that many sailors have
in the past made significant efforts to lighten the ends of their boats.
ISAF is well aware of the prior contributions to swing testing, what we do
hope to achieve is a level playing field.

"Never go to bed mad. Stay up and fight." - Phyllis Diller