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SCUTTLEBUTT 1580 - May 11, 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, whining and personal attacks for elsewhere.

As the last of the Olympic qualifying events get under way this week, only
six countries are assured of competing in all 11 classes at Athens in
August---and the U.S. isn't one of them. In fact, with the U.S. Olympic
Trials completed, only nine of the winners are certain they're going to
Greece. The other two - Kevin Hall in Finn and the women's 470 team of
Katie McDowell of Barrington, R.I. and crew Isabelle Kinsolving of New
York, N.Y. - should know their fates by the end of the week. But even if
they all make it to Athens, the chances of Americans winning medals in
sailing appear slim . . . that is, if the latest International Sailing
Federation rankings for the Olympic classes are credible, which some people

Hall is still awaiting a renewal of his exemption permitting him to use
testosterone, a steroid hormone, following his battle with testicular
cancer several years ago. The quirk in McDowell and Kinsolving's Olympic
dream is that although they won their trials last November, the U.S. hasn't
qualified to compete in the class. Their last chance is this week's 470
world championships at Zadar, Croatia. With the total number of sailors
limited to 400, it's one thing to qualify to represent one's country and
another for a country to qualify to be represented. Countries with no
reasonable chance of winning medals are weeded out in designated qualifying
events, most of which are in Europe.

What are the women's chances? "Very good," says Jonathan Harley, the
Olympic director for US Sailing. An American boat - it doesn't have to be
theirs - must finish no worse than fifth in Croatia among countries not yet
qualified. If they can't do it, their wild card hope is the team of Amanda
Clark and Sarah Mergenthaler that finished second in the U.S. trials, only
three points behind.

They'll have to fight their way through about two dozen other countries
with the same desperate intent. Japan and China are mounting mass attacks
to qualify in both the men's and women's 470 fleets with 11 and 8 entries,
respectively. Harley didn't mention that McDowell recently suffered a back
injury and was a doubtful participant as recently as 10 days ago. Coach
Skip Whyte went so far as to ask JJ Isler, a two-time Olympic medallist in
'92 at 2000, if she could go to Croatia to sail with Kinsolving in
McDowell's place just to help qualify the U.S. for the Olympics.

Fred Hagedorn, the Olympic Sailing Committee chairman for this quadrennium,
said a few days ago, "Katie did injure her back while sailing in Portugal.
As she sailed in France at Hyeres she determined that she needed to come
back to the USA to be evaluated and treated. "On Thursday [April 29] she
underwent evaluations and over the weekend she received treatment. Her
prognosis is good and Katie is now back in Croatia and has been sailing
with Isabelle."

As for Hall, he has been in limbo since dominating the Finn trials in
February. It's all up to the International Sailing Federation, the
International Olympic Committee and the World Anti-Doping Agency. - Rich
Roberts for, full story:

Fifty-five days after the Socialists won the general elections; the new
Government still has not named the four delegates that it intends to place
on the Americas Cup Committee that is charged with setting up the
infrastructures as well as bearing the overall responsibility for the
races. A statement from Valencia Town Hall has revealed that the
municipality considers these appointments as extremely urgent, as the
Consortium is unable to function properly. In the meantime, it has been
revealed that the course [meaning "race area" not "course"] for the
Americas Cup will be 15 miles long and stretch from el Perello to the Pobla
de Farnals. -

Fame is fleeting, but getting your name listed in Scuttlebutt lasts
forever. The Archived Newsletter section on the Scuttlebutt website
provides a Google search tool to help you find information from back
issues, but we were curious who the most infamous people are in the sport
of sailing thus far during the Scuttlebutt era. Prizes for the top three
entrants. For contest rules:

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As a result of an infringement of ISAF Racing Rules of Sailing 69.3 - Gross
Misconduct, the ISAF Eligibility of Mr Emil Baldyga (POL) has been
suspended with immediate effect and until 31 November 2004. Baldyga
committed a gross breach of good manners during the International 470 Class
Junior World Championship in Austria in 2003, when he was sailing wearing a
jacket with discriminatory text, prepared by himself, thus bringing the
sport into disrepute. ISAF informs all ISAF Member National Authorities
that in accordance with the ISAF Eligibility Code, Mr Emil Baldyga is not
permitted to participate in the events detailed in the ISAF Eligibility
Code, Regulation 19.3. For details of the suspension:

Makoto Uematsu's new Transpac 52 Esmeralda went on its first sail last
Friday (photos posted on the Scuttlebutt website) and even a blind squirrel
can see that the future of 50' Grand Prix sailing is the "box rule." There
are now owners from three countries (China, Japan & US). In the United
States, owners from the West Coast, the East Coast and the Great Lakes are
represented in the Transpac 52 class.

The Transpac 52 class benefited from the vision of John MacLaurin who
essentially funded the $1mm dollar R&D for the newly emerging Transpac 52
Class when he commissioned Pendragon 4 in 2000. Now, 13 hulls later, this
is the most successful inshore/offshore class in the last 20 years.
Transpac 52's have no leaky water ballast, mercurial canting keels or
difficult runners to operate. Owners and crew can focus on boat speed and
tactics instead of successfully operating large complex systems with
marginal benefits. In today's crazy world of "build a bigger offshore boat
than the next guy", it's great to have a quality inshore/offshore class
whose grand prix shelf life is not measured by an egg timer.

In 2004, four Transpac 52's will be on the Bermuda Race (Lightwave, Bright
Star, Sjambok & Lightwave), six on the Chicago to Mackinac (Beau Geste,
Bright Star, Sjambok, Esmeralda, Rosebud & Trader ) & nine Transpac 52's
will hit the Big Boat Series starting line racing class. - Tom Pollack,

Point Loma High School won its second straight Mallory Cup national high
school sailing championship in New Orleans. The Pointers' two boats scored
a combined 126 points over 40 races and finished with a 58-point edge over
Corona del Mar of Newport Beach. University of San Diego High School was
third with 220 points.

USDHS' Zack Brown won the A Fleet title with Brittany Haas as crew in the
420 class dinghy. The Point Loma tandem of skipper Adam Roberts and crewman
Graham Biehl was second. Point Loma's Parker Shinn won the B Fleet title
with Briana Provancha as crew. Megan Magill and Anna Brun teamed in USDHS'
B boat. After building a big lead, Point Loma turned its A boat over to
skipper Tyler Sinks and crewman Ben Todter and the B boat to skipper Brian
Rigby and crew Erik Oberg. -, full story:
Complete results:

Monday 10 May 2004, Hollywood FL -- Good Easterlies wasted no time sending
15 teams on their way from Islamorada to their first checkpoint in the
second annual Tybee 500. Team Tybee (Steve Lohmeyer and Kenny Pierce), last
year's T-500 winners took the lead, arriving just shy of 5 hours and 10
minutes after the mass "racing start" near mile marker 12 in the Keys.
Close on their heels (5:11:37) was Team Castrol (John Casey and Jay
Sonnenklar), another of last year's top three. Team Oz came in third
overall at 5:16:11 but the team's Rick Bliss and Brandy Wood were on the
first of the four Nacra 6.0's in the fleet. Teams Tybee and Castro are
racing Inter 20's.

The sixth leg on Saturday completes the first race at Tybee Island GA. Then
Monday May 17 sees the debut of its new "sister" race, the Outer Banks 500,
which starts where the Tybee leaves off. Eight teams are registered for the
OBX connection and only four of those finishing this first leg plan to go
the whole distance to Kill Devil Hills NC and vie for highest honors in the
first Atlantic 1000. and

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* Yngling Women's Worlds, Santander Spain - The first day of the Yngling
World Championships started in light 5-7 knot breezes and heavy rain. With
four Olympic qualification places at stake, as well as being the team
trials for many of the nations involved, the starts were always going to be
aggressive, with a general recall before the fleet got cleanly away the
second time. The second race took three general recalls before finally
getting away under the black flag. Six boats were over identified as being
OCS, but this did not matter as at the bottom mark the wind died and the
Race Committee decided to abandon the race. The fleet waited for another
hour in a constantly shifting and light breeze before all racing was
abandoned for the day at 1600.

Standings after one race (37 boats):
1. Sharon Ferris, NZL
2. Trine Palludan, DEN
3. Ulrike Schumann, Ger
4. Dorte Jensen, DEN
5. Anne Le Helley, FRA
6. Lisa Ross, CAN
14. Sally Barkow, USA
Event website:

* International 470 Class World Championship. Zadar Croatia - Familiar
names head the Men's leaderboard after day 1. While in the Women's fleet
the expected leaders had a day to forget. The day started at 11 am with a
postponement followed by abandoned races on both course areas, when the
last of a low pressure zone lead to showers and unpredictable breeze
headings. After a long wait on the water, racing got underway at 1430 in a
comfortable 8-10 knots.

Men's Standings after 3 races - 101 boats:
1. FRA Gildas Philippe/ Nicolas Le Berre, 3pts
2. UKR Yevgen Braslavets/ Igor Matvienko, 6
3. SWE Johan Molund/ Martin Andersson, 8
20. USA Paul Foerster/ Kevin Burnham, 29
77. CAN Stephane Locas/ Oliver Bone, 71

Women Standings after 2 races - 53 boats:
1 POL Katarzyna Tylinska/ Zuzanna Gladysz, 7
2 SUI Franziska Duerig/ Monika Meier, 9
3 ITA Elisabetta Saccheggiani/Myriam Cutolo, 9
12 CAN Jennifer Provan/Nikola Girke, 17
27 USA Amanda Clark/ Sarah Mergenthaler, 26
Event website:

* Hobie 16 Worlds semi-finals day 1, Barcelo Maya Beach Resort, Riviera
Maya, Mexico - The first group was out on the course on time at 10:00 this
morning only to be sent in when a thunderstorm moved over the sailing area.
After a two-hour postponement racing got under way in difficult conditions.
The current was moving up wind, as it has been all week, making for large
steep waves. The wind was just strong enough for marginal double trapping.
The teams that were the best at powering their boat up on the beats and
surfing the waves down wind had the best days. At this point some teams
have sailed two races and others have sailed only one. It's a bit
pre-mature to count points but the defending World Champions Gavin Colby
and Simone Mattfield are on track for a repeat performance. Full results
are on the website:

* A record number of J/22s will participate in the 2004 World Championship,
scheduled for May 18-21 at the Annapolis Yacht Club in Maryland. When
registration closed on May 7, 130 teams signed on to be part of the largest
J/22 regatta in the Fleet's 20-year history. The regatta, sponsored by
Jaguar/Land Rover of Annapolis, will feature 12 races over four days as
well as numerous social activities for competitors. In addition to the U.S.
teams, four other countries will be represented - Canada, Italy, Cayman
Islands and the Netherlands. -

* James Russell, formerly Development Director at the Herreshoff Marine
Museum and a Harvard graduate, joined the federally funded, ACCSCT
accredited Yacht Restoration School senior staff as Vice-President,
Development. Russell has ten years of experience in a variety of nonprofit
educational institutions, ranging from a community museum to the Herreshoff
Marine Museum in Bristol, RI. His role at IYRS will be to help architect
and carry out activities associated with the institution's next phase of
growth, including focusing on major gift fund raising, the restoration of
the Mill Building, membership development, and events. -

* After starting the 1000 milles de Calais race just 12 days after its
launch, the Open 60 Sill has been forced to retire with keel issues. The
keel has suffered some delamination between the keel and the bulb and the
crew is now heading for Concarneau or Port La Foręt in north-west Brittany.
There are just five boats left, but the top four were less than 15 miles
apart at 01:40:00 GMT on May 11: 1. Bonduelle, 2. Ecover, 3 Virbac., 4.
PRB. - Event website:

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(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 Paul Henderson, ISAF President (re Sailor Classification): ISAF
provides a service for those Events and Classes which want to use it. ISAF
forces no class to use it. The decision is left totally up to the sailors
in a class to decide by a democratic vote of the class. ISAF recognizes
over 60 classes and less than 5 have voted so to do. Please blame the class
or change classes. ISAF only took over the system so as there would be
uniformity as several countries were setting up different criteria causing

* From Derek Blancké: Geoff Van Gorkom wrote a letter criticizing ISAF
categorization from the viewpoint of people working in the marine industry.
What he fails to realize is that the majority of people turning out to race
every weekend are paying for their racing as an expensive pastime. It is
very unfair and a distinct discouragement to people who are good amateur
sailors to every weekend turn up and compete against people who are getting
paid for their knowledge of yachts and sailing techniques be it hulls,
sails, rigging, training, deliveries etc. If someone is working on large
commercial shipping can they not get into Class 2 because they work in the
marine industry but do not have any influence over the performance of sail

* From Scott Larson (In response to Ed Caesare's letter ('butt 1579)
regarding owners' opinions of US Sailing's moratorium on participation in
the RWP): I think George Bernard Shaw put it best, "Silence is the most
perfect expression of scorn". The owners, in the US, have silenced not only
their opinions, but also their checkbooks. In fact, the silence has become
so deafening that the voicing of opinions and scribbling of checks from
owners in Europe can now be clearly heard in California. This causes one to
wonder if US Sailing's "wider review of national opinion" will ever
recognize this commentary.

* From John Drayton: Enjoying the debate/discussion on the practicality of
cruising with CBTF. Frankly, I've been trying to convince my wife for years
that the CBTF Schock 40 would make a great family cruising boat (what's
wrong with a 40' boat that has all the space/ accommodations/amenities of a
J24). Admittedly, I've also been trying to convince her that a Porsche is
really a great family car, and getting a pilots license could provide
economical transportation for family trips.

* From Enrico Ferrari: Great comment from George Washburn on the Opti
minimalist cruiser. Morning Glory as a cruiser is simply not my idea of
cruising. Too big and unsimple. More is less in this case but George's Opti
may cross the minimalist line for me.

* From Richard Hazelton: Amidst all the continual bitching and moaning
about sailing's governing bodies, organizations, people, boats, rating
systems, it's great to see the Hobie Cat group just continue to keep going
strong, having great regattas in exotic places, with lots of participation
locally and around the world.

Some of the recording artists from the 60s are re-releasing their hits with
updated lyrics, like, Paul Simon's - "Fifty Ways To Lose Your Liver."