Scuttlebutt Today
  
  Archived Newsletters »
  Features »
  Photos »

SCUTTLEBUTT 1572 - April 29, 2004

Powered by SAIC (www.saic.com), 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, whining and personal attacks for elsewhere.

TIME IS SUPER-CRITICAL
"We have been approached by several teams planning entries for the next
Volvo but we want to be sure that the team we sign with has the resources,
infrastructure and drive - as we do - to win the race," says Mani Frers.
The Frers design team (German Frers Naval Architecture & Engineering) has
completed phase three of their Volvo Open 70 design process with a tank
testing session at the SSPA towing tank in Gothenburg, Sweden.

"Based on the successful design work applied to the 2001 Volvo Ocean Race"
said Mani Frers "we have analyzed the boat's performance in that race
relative to the profile of the rest of the fleet. We used a combination of
data harvested from the on board systems during the race, and extensive
de-briefing sessions with the sailors. We have carried some important
lessons forward into the new Volvo 70 design."

The Frers team has run more than 100 computational fluid dynamics Volvo
Open 70 designs over the last eight months and iterated the designs to the
quarter-scale models that have been tested in Sweden. The six-metre models
have tested not just hull form, but appendage combinations as well. By the
time the design is finalised, four hulls and more than 16 configurations
will have been tested at quarter scale.

"There are some key factors that will affect the success of a design for
the next Volvo," concludes Frers at the end of the tank session. "The
introduction of inshore racing and the weighting of the overall points
between inshore and ocean racing means an entirely new approach is needed
to the design solution. And the inclusion of a canting keel, with its huge
increase in available righting moment into the design process, means that
characteristics such as planing transition and ballast configurations will
be key. The only way to validate our predictions in these areas was to
commit to a comprehensive large-scale tank testing programme." - Volvo
Ocean Racing website, full story:
http://www.volvooceanrace.com/pages/news/news61.htm

AUDI STAR WORLDS
Gaeta, Italy - After a long and frustrating two-hour postponement, race
three of the Star Worlds finally got underway late Wednesday afternoon.
When the time limit expired, the race was abandoned. Race three will now
have to be re-sailed and the jury will make a decision on the schedule
overnight. http://www.starworld2004.com/

Magnus Wheatley - never one to mince words - has some very strong opinions
about the race and event management at this regatta. His comments are
posted on the Yachts and Yachting website:
http://www.yachtsandyachting.com/default2.asp?section=11&article=12782

OLYMPICS
Although its credibility may have been dented, the New Zealand Sports
Disputes Tribunal will be much wiser following the release of the Court of
Arbitration for Sport's reasoning for its decision to uphold Yachting New
Zealand's appeal, says Sport and Recreation chief executive Nick Hill.
The arbitration court, the world's highest sports disputes body, overturned
the tribunal's decision last month allowing the original Olympic
nominations of Yachting New Zealand (YNZ) in the Laser and 470 men's class
to stand.

In the report, the arbitration court's panel of former Chief Justice Sir
Thomas Eichelbaum, David Williams, QC and Australian Alan Sullivan, QC,
found no fault with the YNZ selection panel. In its view "the approach
adopted by the panel was an appropriate one and conformed with the
criteria." - Julie Ash, NZ Herald, full story: http://tinyurl.com/2k9rb

DEVLING'S CAMPAIGN II OVERALL PHRF WINNER ENSENADA 2004
Congratulations to Jim Devling's "Campaign II" (1st in PHRF J, President of
the USA Trophy, and Jack Bailee Perpetual Trophy); PHRF A-1st, Bruce
Anderson's "Chicken Little"; PHRF B-1st, Jed Olenick's "Doctor No" & PHRF
B-2nd, Paul Stemler's "Patriot"; PHRF D-1st, Ray Godwin's "Whiplash"; PHRF
F-1st, Kim Ingram's "Willpower"; ULDB B-1st, John Staff's "Wildcat" & ULDB
B-2nd, Barry & Sue Senescu's "Rattle & Hum"; ULDB D-1st, Eric Kaltenbach's
"Oooh La La". Ready for the "Fastest Sails on the Planet"? Contact Ullman
Sails or visit us at http://www.ullmansails.com

MATCH RACING RANKINGS
ISAF has released the ISAF World Match Race Rankings that will decide which
skippers are to be invited to the ISAF Match Racing World Championship, to
be held from 17-24 July. The event will be hosted by the Russian Yachting
Federation and sailed in Yekaterinburg on the Verkh-Neyvinsky Pond in the
"Ricochet-747" keelboat supplied by the organizers. 12 Skippers are to be
invited to the event, including last year's World Champion Ed Baird (USA),
the top skippers in this release of the ISAF World Match Race Rankings, and
the first Russian Skipper in the Russian Open Match Racing Championship,
the Ekaterinburg Cup, 2004.

The top ranked match racers include: 1. Karol Jablonski, POL; 2. Ed Baird, USA;
3. Jasper Racich, DEN; 4. James Spithill, AUS; 5. Mathieu Richard, FRA; 6.
Staffan Lindberg, FIN; 7. Magnus Holberg, SWE; 8. Ian Williams, GBR; 9.
Paolo Cian, ITA; 10. Mikael Linquist, SWE; 11. Bjorn Hansen, SWE; 12. Jes
Gram-Hansen, DEN.

No move in the top five of the ISAF Women's Match Race Rankings.
Invitations to the BoatUS 2004 ISAF Women's Match Racing World
Championships were decided from a previous ranking release and the event,
which will attract the World's top ranked women skippers and crews to
Annapolis in June, is well subscribed. http://www.sailing.org/isafsailor

Curmudgeon's Comment: Am I the only one amused to read that Russell Coutts
is ranked 103 and Peter Holmberg is number 133 on these 'official' rankings?

TROPHEE JULES VERNE
The Capgemini and Schneider Electric trimaran changed tack this morning at
the centre of the anticyclone off south-west Ireland, and has finally set
her bows straight for the Jules Verne Trophy finish line. She is expected
to cross the line tomorrow afternoon. The sea is coming from the northeast,
as forecast, and must therefore be climbed wave by wave, since Geronimo's
route is due east at the moment. Over the next few hours, the wind should
freshen to between 30 and 35 knots and move round to the north, much closer
to the direction of the waves. This rotation will also allow the trimaran
to fill her sails and step on the gas a bit to cross the line on this same
tack... otherwise they could find themselves close-hauled again.

Day 62 Update: Geronimo sailed 455 nautical miles in 24 hours for an
average speed of 18.95 knots. They are now more than 300 miles ahead of the
track of the Jules Verne record holder, Orange I, but several days behind
official round the world record set recently by Steve Fossett's Cheyenne. -
http://www.trimaran-geronimo.com/

MATCH RACING
The Garda Trentino grade 1 Open Match Race, organized by the Fraglia Vela
Riva in conjunction with the International Sailing Federation (ISAF),
started today on Lake Garda. The Race Committee was able to complete 6
flights of round robin one (except for flight 2 where matches 3 and 4 were
abandoned). Around 10.30 am the wind dropped and the competitors waited on
the race course until midday when the southerly breeze "Ora" kicked in.
However, they had to tackle very fluky and unstable wind conditions due to
the approaching clouds.

Leaderboard (skipper/wins/losses)
1. Ed Baird (USA), 4/1
2. Jesper Radich (DEN), 3/1
2. Mathieu Richard (FRA), 3/1
2. Paolo Cian (ITA, Italia Challenge), 3/1
5. Ian Williams (GBR), 2/2
5. Mark Campbell-James (GBR), 2/2
7. Maxim Taranov (RUS), 2/3
8. Johnie Berntsson (SWE), 1/3
9. Andrew Arbuzov (RUS), 1/4
9. Michael Dunstan (AUS, Ozboyz Challenge), 1/4

Excerpts from the Cup in Europe website: http://tinyurl.com/24o6y
Event website: http://tinyurl.com/22h2e

INVEST IN YOU RACING ACUMEN!
Join Offshore Sailing School and America's Cup veteran Jud Smith for 4 days
of training and racing aboard Colgate 26's on New York Harbor May 20-23,
2004. Offshore Sailing School racing Programs: Maybe the best knots per
dollar investment you will make this season. 800-221-4326 or
http://www.sailing-ny.com

NEWS BRIEFS
* Twenty-four International 14s representing the USA, Australia, GBR and
Canada assembled at Kaneohe Bay, in Hawaii for the Pacific Rim
Championships. The big breeze that arrived at the end of the event was just
what the Australian contingent needed to capture the top three spots: 1.
Lindsay Irwin & Harold von Sydow (AUS/USA) 28 points; 2. David Hayter &
Alan Pouitt (AUS) 32; 3. Dave Alexander & Andrew Chisholm (AUS) 34; 4. Ron
Boehm & Pete Mohler (USA) 47; 5. Steve Goodson & Alan Derricks (USA) 52.
http://www.i14.org/news/

* As the next step in its strategy to manage the risks inherent to its core
business, the IOC announced that it has taken out a policy, which also
protects the interests of the National Olympic Committees and the
International Federations. The first Games to be covered by this new policy
will be the Games of the XVIII Olympiad in Athens, this summer. The total
coverage will be for an amount of US$170 million. A similar approach will
apply for the next editions of the Games, i.e. Turin 2006, Beijing 2008 and
Vancouver 2010. - http://www.sailing.org/Article_content.asp?ArticleID=6976

* Hyres, France (April 28) - If the conditions yesterday were perfect for
some, the "breeze lovers" had their fair share today with sea breeze and
waves. The South-Easterly wind increased all day to reach 20 knots in its
peak. The "heavy weather" sailors made the most of these physical
conditions, sometimes winning all the races programmed today. Current top
U.S. finishers: 49er: 2. Wadlow/Spaulding; 470 Men: 14. Foerster/Burnham;
470 Women: 34. McDowell/Kinsolving; Europe: 14. Gaillard; Laser: 10.
Mendelblatt; Mistral Men: 10. Barger; Tornado: 2. Lovell/Ogletree; Yngling:
3. Barkow/Howe/Capozzi. - Event website: http://hyeres.ffvoile.net

* In December 2003 and January 2004 the Equipped To Survive Foundation
conducted a series of laboratory and real-world performance tests of 406
MHz Location Protocol (GPS enabled) Emergency (Distress) Beacons (EPIRBs
and PLBs) in an eff ort to determine how these beacons would perform in
real-world conditions. This evaluation was primarily concerned with the
self-locating performance of these beacons in real-world conditions, as
well as other lesser issues, and not the beacons' performance vis--vis
COSPAS-SARSAT or other regulatory standards, per se. A summary of the
findings is posted on-line: http://tinyurl.com/yrfm4

* Wednesday was a layday at Antigua Sailing Week 2004 for Mari Cha IV (and
her big hole in the bow), Pyewacket, Morning Glory and the rest of the 211
boat fleet. Photos from the first three days of racing are on the
Scuttlebutt website. http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/photos/04/antiguasw

CALENDAR OF MAJOR EVENTS (Sponsored by West Marine)
Events listed at http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/calendar

WIND STRIPCHARTS WITHOUT A COMPUTER
Prior to the introduction of Ockam's 007 Matryx display, "trend"
information was restricted to systems running outboard computer programs.
Stripchart data is a powerful tool on the racecourse - the Matryx display
provides wind and current speed/direction graphs at the push of a button.
Ockam's new wireless PDA software package "EYE" provides stripcharting of
multiple functions across a wide range of time periods. Predict the future
(more) accurately with EYE and Matryx - visit http://www.ockam.com


LETTERS TO THE CURMUDGEON (editor@sailingscuttlebutt.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 Julie Hahnke: Mr. Wheatley's coverage of the Day 3 events at the
Star Worlds was rife with vitriol. What went on in Gaeta is newsworthy. Mr.
Wheatley's personal opinion of the jury's performance is not. A jury is a
group of dedicated volunteers who are often asked to find sense and
fairness in contradictory situations. Because mistakes can happen, or
better solutions present themselves on further consideration, the rules
allow for hearings to be re-opened and decisions to be revised. I find Mr.
Wheatley's deprecation of a group of dedicated volunteers who give up
significant time and energy to support racing, highly offensive. I'm also
surprised it ran in Scuttlebutt, which typically holds to a higher
editorial standard.

Curmudgeon's Comment: OK, but if you'd have gone to the official Star Class
website yesterday to learn about that event, all you would have found was a
link to the same story we excerpted:
http://www.starclass.org/search.cgi?Action=view&Event_id=331

* From Dallas Johnson: Regarding yesterday's report from the Star Worlds.
If I read the story and the related website materials correctly; it appears
the questioned boat was given average points because of an RC procedural
technicality even though they were still technically illegal. Perhaps
shame-on the RC for making a mistake as the story indicates, but also
shame-on the competitors who took advantage of it.

* From August Miller, International Finn Coach (edited to our 250-word
limit): I am not familiar with the work of Drs. Richard Schmidt and Tim Lee
so I cannot critique their experimental protocols or their ID and control
of variables. The Lauderdale - Miami training course that Kevin Hall used
has been used successfully by Finn sailors for thirty years as have been
similar courses such as Long Beach - Newport Beach, Association Island -
Kingston, Hayling Island - IOW, Hellerup - Malmo and Newport - America's
Cup Buoy, etc. Why are they successful enough to be used repeatedly by
small groups?

They are useful in the context of periodized training. They are intense
sessions that harden the body and the mind if they are followed by
sufficient rest. They train the mind to concentrate for long periods. They
are experimental sessions where many different combinations of subtle
technique are used and refined. As in meditative training of the mind,
there are subtle awareness that at first are not there and take time to
come to consciousness. As in chain wrestling of move, counter move and
counter to the counter, you have to learn to do long series of moves when
you are tired. Every great Finn sailor is known to have spent at least a
year living in the cockpit of his Finn. As Paracelsus said, "Test it and it
is tested."

* From Mike Milburn: What Drs. Schmidt and Lee have to say about repetitive
practice seems counter intuitive. It is probably correct, if the one
practicing has a limited amount of time. However, what Kevin Hall was
trying to achieve (and ostensibly succeeded), was to make sailing downwind
a reflex reaction, almost an ingrained set of motor skills. You don't find
many successful golf professionals that do not spend many hours on
perfecting their swing. Nor does one see golf pros running between the
practice tee and the putting green for each successive shot. It seems to me
that Hall has got it right.

* From Jim Mahaffy: Having just gotten back from this years race and
catching up with e-mail, including the 'Butt, I couldn't agree more with
the Curmudgeon and some others on the failure to get the results up before
Tuesday. Being a past NOSA President and still on the Headquarters
Committee I can only say I was embraced to say the least. The results have
been on the web site on Sunday before the trophy presentation for at least
the last six years, that NOSA missed this year is what most sailors will
remember, unfortunately.

Yes from a sailors view every thing went really well, except for a little
more consistent wind. As for the line being too close to shore, it was just
about where it always has been. The problem with moving the line out
further is there is a shelf out there and the outside mark gets in to
really deep water. And most people in Ensenada said they had great time.

* From Diane Swintal: Re Dave McLean's note in SC 1571: Don't get the
Curmudgeon wrong - NOSA does an outstanding job on the Newport-Ensenada
race, organizing the massive start, keeping track of all the boats and
handling the award presentations. The problem is - the outside world cares,
too! For those of us who had to miss the race this year (sniff, sniff!), we
just wanted to know how all our friends were doing. Did they win? Did they
break? Did they head for the pub in San Diego?

Considering the magnitude of this event, it would serve the sponsors better
to insure frequency of viewing of the website by having some kind of
running commentary during the race (a la Stars & Stripes in the last AC),
if only to let us know what the wind is doing, what boats have announced
their retirement, etc. Hopefully, NOSA will accept some constructive
criticism and broaden their PR reach for next year's race. In the meantime,
we'll find pictures where we can!

* From Fin Beven: Regarding Ensenada, 2004. You can write all you want
about Alchemy and Afterburner, but it's Andale, Ed Lorence, and his fine
crew that deserve some major recognition. Andale, wooden hull, wooden
spars, and a 60 year-old design, won Class I, finishing more than an hour
ahead of most in her class, and 6th overall in PHRF. And they did so after
an OCS start that cost them at least 10 minutes. A "class" act, both in
sailing and in aesthetics.

* From Robert Bents (Rbents@mindspring.com): In response to comments made
on Scuttlebutt regarding the dissemination of race results following the
2004 Tommy Bahama Ensenada race, I must offer the perspective that we
always need more volunteers to help. NOSA as an organization is made up
entirely of volunteers who work all year around to organize & sponsor
sailing events that include the 14-mile bank race and the Argosy race as
well as the Ensenada Race.

The purpose of NOSA is to engage in amateur sports competition. In that
context, NOSA sponsors yacht races. In addition, NOSA sponsors, promotes,
and provides financial assistance to junior sailing programs and other
non-profit organizations that promote amateur sports with an emphasis on
sailing, boating, and seamanship.

* From Dave Davis: I was mighty impressed on viewing the stats on
Mirabella. The 42,000 Sq Ft of sails is very impressive, but not as much as
the 56,000 Sq Feet of sails carried by the Royal Clipper. Check it out at
http://www.starclippers.com/

THE CURMUDGEON'S OBSERVATION
Funny, I don't remember being absent minded . . .