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SCUTTLEBUTT 1586 - May 19, 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
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welcome, but save your bashing, whining and personal attacks for elsewhere.

The title, "25 Years of Sailing," may not excite the masses. Even a young
Ted Turner states in an opening film clip from the eve of the U.S.'s loss
of the America's Cup in 1983: "I wouldn't say the nation's prestige is at
stake. It's just a sailboat race, really." But a sneak preview of Gary
Jobson's one-hour special on ESPN Classic tonight (6 and 9 p.m. PT, 9 p.m.
ET) reveals it as more than just a sailing show, skipping from highlight to
highlight. There are plenty of those, but this is just for sailors like
"Seabiscuit" was just for horse racing fans.

Jobson, who produced and narrated the program, instills the heart, soul,
evolution and emotion of the sport into the production, ranging from kids
sailing Optis to pros winning America's Cups and braving the Southern
Ocean. In the best circumstances it could not have been as easy task.
Jobson, 54, is in the second year of his personal struggle against
lymphoma. But this time he has outdone himself, drawing deeply from his own
life as the sport's top TV personality.

He was there, at Newport, R.I. in '83, when Alan Bond and skipper John
Bertrand turned the America's Cup on its ear. Jobson dug up what he says is
aerial footage "unseen in 21 years" showing the desperate downwind jibes by
Dennis Conner's Liberty trying to fight off the wing-keeled Australia II.
He was at Fremantle in 1986-87 as lead commentator for a fledgling network
called ESPN whose staples were kick boxing and cheerleading contests when
Conner faced off with his unfriendly rival, the late Tom Blackaller. One
press conference exchange was more memorable than their battles on the water.

As they discussed New Zealand's first venture into the AC with fiberglass
12-meters, Conner said: "Since '78, 12-meters [have been] built all in
aluminum, and so if you wanted to build a glass boat, why would you do it
unless you wanted to cheat?" Blackaller: "Woop! Ooooh, I don't think he
should have said that . . ." Conner (smiling): "I take it all back." But it
was out there, for all time: DC had called the Kiwis cheaters---and then
had the last laugh. He brought the Cup back to America and his hometown of
San Diego and, in the process, Jobson says, "revolutionized the America's
Cup game."

* At the end Jobson lists his personal choices for the best five sailors of
the quarter-century, but you won't see them here. You'll have to watch the
show. You'll enjoy it. - Rich Roberts, for, full story;

Curmudgeon's Comment: '25 Years of Sailing' airs tonight on ESPN Classic at
9 p.m. Eastern Time, and re-airs again three hours later.

It's the United States vs. Europe for the right to host the 2012 Olympics.
New York and four European capitals - Paris, London, Madrid and Moscow -
were picked as finalists Tuesday by the International Olympic Committee
which trimmed the field from nine bidders to five. Missing the cut were
Havana; Istanbul, Turkey; Leipzig, Germany, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The
decision by the IOC executive board kicks off a 14-month race that ends
with the selection of the host city by the full IOC assembly in Singapore
in July 2005.

Tuesday's biggest loser might have been Rio de Janeiro, which had been
seeking to become the first South American city to host the Olympics.
Brazil is still likely to get soccer's World Cup in 2014. Paris came out on
top of the IOC report based on 11 criteria, including infrastructure,
transportation and security. Madrid was a close second, followed by London,
New York and Moscow. Then came Leipzig, Rio, Istanbul and Havana.

Following the IOC decision, British bookmaker William Hill listed Paris as
the favorite at odds of 11-10, followed by London 5-4, Madrid 7-1, New York
8-1 and Moscow 20-1. Geography favors a European city for 2012 after the
2008 Summer Olympics in Asia (Beijing) and 2010 Winter Games in North
America (Vancouver, British Columbia). - Stephen Wilson, AP Sports writer,
Yahoo News, full story:

Boat manufacturers from around (the State of) Washington will converge on
Anacortes on Friday to network and swap ideas on how they can best use
local resources to train their workers in specialized boat-building skills.
It seems that with all the people out there looking for jobs, there still
aren't enough with the specialized skills needed in marine manufacturing.
Judging by the continued surge in boat sales in the Northwest, the demand
for skilled, trained workers isn't going to let up anytime soon.

Washington boat dealers report a 17 percent increase in sales during the
first quarter of 2004 compared to the same period last year, according to a
report by the Northwest Marine Trade Association. Statewide, recreational
boating is big business. The industry contributes $2 billion each year to
the state economy. Based on taxable sales in 2003, retail sales of new and
used boats totaled $577 million. - Kasia Pierzga, Skagit Valley Herald,
full story:

Isn't it time you had real information from the instrument system on your
boat? Ockam instruments are accurate, responsive and reliable. Upgrade to
the amazing Tryad processor, swap your tired fluxgate compass for the
compact powerhouse Teeter-Todter 3D compass, replace that stubby, stiff
bearing masthead sensor with a tall Airys wand, display target speeds and
angles from OckamSoft 4. These and a wide range of further enhancements
will significantly boost your system's performance and make a real
difference on the course. Let's race. Find out what you can do at

LAUSANNE, Switzerland (Reuters) - Transexuals will be able to compete at
the Olympics if they have had appropriate surgery and are legally
recognized as members of their new sex, the International Olympic Committee
said on Monday. The rule will cover both male-to-female and female-to-male
cases and will be in place before the Athens Games in August.

The International Olympic Committee's (IOC) medical commission drew up a
list of criteria and said transsexual athletes could compete, providing:
"Surgical anatomical changes have been completed, including external
genitalia changes and gonadectomy. Legal recognition of their assigned sex
has been conferred by the appropriate official authorities. Hormonal
therapy appropriate for the assigned sex has been administered in a
verifiable manner and for a sufficient length of time to minimize
gender-related advantages in sport competition." Hormone treatment must
have ceased at least two years before competition, IOC spokeswoman Giselle
Davies said.

"This has been something of an open door," added IOC medical director
Patrick Schamasch. "We needed some rules and regulations in place." Some
people contend that transsexual athletes have a physical advantage against
other women. Men have higher levels of testosterone and greater
muscle-to-fat ratio and heart and lung capacity. However, doctors say,
testosterone levels and muscle mass drop after hormone therapy and
sex-change surgery. - Yahoo News, full story:

Next time you have a spare half hour, treat yourself to a relaxed visit to
Christian Fevrier's BlueGreenPictures website. You'll find page after page
of magnificent water-oriented photos cataloged in such a way to make your
journey effortless. There's even a very efficient search engine for those
in a hurry. Even if you don't like sailing, you'll discover separate
sections for Nature/ Wildlife, Travel and Adventure plus Marine
Miscellaneous - with water being the common denominator for all sections.
There are three full pages of surf photos; four pages of powerboats, tall
ships and lighthouses; five pages of marine mammals & reptiles and of
sailing disasters, plus six pages devoted to extreme sailing. Oh yea -
there are lots of racing photos and a ton of America's Cup images:

The next event of the 2003-'04 Swedish Match Tour schedule, the ACI
HTmobile Cup, May 24-29, in Split, Croatia. Founded in 1987 and featuring a
prize purse of $40,000, and $12,000 for the winner, the ACI HTmobile Cup is
one of the oldest events on Tour. Tour leader Peter Gilmour will be
challenged by Sweden's Magnus Holmberg, placed second on the Tour, and New
Zealand's Gavin Brady, who is placed third. They trail Gilmour by 48 and 52
points, respectively.

The list of skippers also includes Denmark's Jes Gram-Hansen, (third
overall on last year's Tour), Team New Zealand's Kelvin Harrap, Italian
Paolo Cian, Bertrand Pacé (France), Mattias Rahm (Sweden), Staffan Lindberg
(Finland), plus a pair of Croatians, Franco Brate and Mate Arapov. Racing
will be conducted in Jeanneau One-Design 35s, designed in the early 1990s
by Daniel Andreiu for Jeanneau Yachts. Racing will consist of a double
round-robin, followed by semifinals, final and petit final. -

Imagine rounding the weathermark and not having to remove layers or your
foulie top to keep from overheating on the downwind leg. That's what it's
like when you wear a Henri Lloyd Neo N2S Top. Great when changing weather
and activity levels are too varied for traditional foulies. Made of Gore's
N2S material, a three layer, ultra light material with a sandwiched
laminate (eliminates the need for separate wicking and wind-blocking
layers). N2S is waterproof, yet highly breathable. Warmth is retained due
to superior wind resistant properties. Anatomic shaping and a technical fit
further enhance the jacket's efficiency.

The International Sailing Federation's insistence on completing the major
Olympic class championships in Europe by the end of this month has taken a
toll on the Laser World Championships in Turkey. Yesterday's penultimate
day at Bodrum was cancelled after a fruitless wait for decent conditions.
Recent championships for the 470s, Ynglings and, in particular, the Stars
have all been affected by adverse conditions after being scheduled too
early in the season. - Tim Jeffery, The Daily Telegraph, full story:

Gold Fleet standings after eight races with one discard (73 boats):
1. Robert Scheidt, BRA, 14 pts
2. Michael Blackburn, AUS, 18pts
3. Mark Mendelblatt, USA, 27pts
4. Hamish Pepper, NZL, 37pts
5. Andreas Geritzer, AUT, 38pts
6. Karl Sunneson, SWE, 52pts
7. Tom Slingsby, AUS, 62pts
8. Peer Moberg, NOR, 66pts
9 Paul Goodison, GBR, 71pts
10. Gareth Blackenberg, RSA, 74pts

Event website:

Annapolis Maryland, USA - Six races amongst two fleets were completed today
in 8 - 12 knots on the Chesapeake Bay. With an upwind flowing current,
several teams were assessed a Z-Flag penalty moving them well down the
score sheet. Qualifying for the Gold fleet continues tomorrow with racing
concluding on Friday. - Ray Wulff
Standings after three races (130 Boats, Seven Countries):
1. Legally Blonde, Alec Cutler, USA, 10
2. Team VC Performance Rigging, David Van Cleef, USA, 11
3. Nile Dutch Africa Line, John den Engelsman, NED, 13
4. Matt Beck / Scott Snyder, USA, 13
5. Margo, Terry Flynn, USA 14

Regatta Web site:

* Yacht designer Merfyn Owen recently completed the 1000 mile Calais to
Fastnet to Calais race onboard Mike Golding's Open 60, Ecover. In an
article posted on the Owen Clarke website, he presents his reflections on
the race and of how his boat performed:

* Nautica International, Inc. will be the "official apparel supplier" for
the 2004 US Sailing Teams. Nautica will outfit the 130 members of the US
Sailing Team, US Disabled Sailing Team and US Youth World Team with a
complete dress and sportswear wardrobe for men and women. Members of the US
Sailing Teams will be dressed in their Nautica wardrobes for the Golden
Spinnaker Gala, a May 18 fundraising event supporting the athletes going to
Athens, organized by the Sailing Foundation of New York and hosted by the
New York YC in Manhattan. -

Words no crew wants to hear, especially at night, in poor visibility or
cold waters. SeaMarshall personal rescue systems can mean the difference
between successful recovery and tragedy. For information on how SeaMarshall
automatic marine beacons and direction finder receivers fit into your
safety plan, contact Chip Barber:,

(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 Brian Kent, New Zealand: I read with amazement the ongoing results
of the Harken Laser Worlds. To see the name Hamish Pepper near the top of
the leader board is inspiring . Is this the same guy who has had his
selection to the New Zealand Olympic Sailing Team legally-challenged in the
last several months? Is this the same person who was indicted by the media
(and others) here at the time for bearing a large part of the
responsibility for the failed NZ America's Cup defense in his role as
tactician when retrospect has proven this not the case? What character and
passion he must possess to move forward and achieve. I have never crossed
paths with the man, but if I do, I would have nothing but the greatest
respect for him and his achievements

* From Gerard Sheridan: Regarding the discussion here about the ongoing
upward adjustment in the Transpac upper rating limit in lock step with the
development of each new Roy Disney boat, I believe for a sport to evolve
and for it to take into consideration the advances in materials and yacht
design, such adjustments are perfectly reasonable. Disney is widely
regarded in our sport as one of the good guys and it's through people like
him and his investment in new designs and boats that ultimately we will all

Think of the investments Formula 1 Grand Prix racing teams have made in
race car technology that have eventually made their way into every day cars
- ABS breaks springs to mind if I'm not mistaken. Also, these boats race in
a different class to most boats and are heavily handicapped so big deal! As
some other reader already mentioned, there is only ever going to be a
handful of boats that can realistically compete for the Barn Door trophy
and the rest of us will compete with ourselves and each other. I, for one,
was really excited to see the likes of Mari Cha III compete in the 2002
PacCup as it added another layer of interest in an already exciting project
of my crew and me.

* From Steve Schupak (In Reference to Mr. Casey's comments regarding
Transpac): Setting aside the fact that Roy Disney is one member of the
Board of TPYC, I would conclude that without adjustment to the racing rules
(done every four years), speed limits (imposed by some race organizers),
and classes eligible to race in any particular race (Transpac noted), we'd
all still wooden planked schooners.

As members of the racing communities enthusiasts we need to embrace the
technological advances (CBTF, carbon fiber, mylar, maxi cats, Z86's,
skiffs...)and encourage them on the race course. Otherwise we risk the
sport dying out in a bunch of worn out 30 year old PHRF boats. I applaud
Roy for getting the rest of the TPYC board to increase the speed limits.
Records were ment to fall. Keep pushing the limits!!!

* From Count Enrico Alfredo Ferrari: The future of sailing is all around us
but, after looking at the web site provided by 'Butt 1585 on the "fastest
boat on the planet", I am amazed at the difference that 30 years has made
in that title! In 1974 the IOR was making the bulby boats with pointy ends
that looked wicked fast compared to a Cal 40, but… The 12 meters were the
playground for the gear and sailmakers. Big boats were lead mines back then
but they were the fastest things we had then.

The dinghies were the closest evolved to this new design of boat, but
lacked several speed components that were developed in competitive events
over the years... roller furling, asymmetrical chutes, canting keels, high
aspect foils and all the carbon this and that. Most of us will not be able
to sail on Fast Pelt (the current fastest boat) but all sailors can
appreciate the ride.

Those of us who read about and compete in competitive sailing have
contributed to this current pinnacle of design. If the hotrods didn't have
some one to beat out on the race course what is the point of building
something faster? I think this yacht is a testament to all those boats and
crews that are cannon fodder and regularly finish after the 'gun'.

* From Howard Bentley (Edited to our 250-word limit): The classification
code might be the best available but it is lacking, arbitrarily age
discriminatory and unfortunately about money. Indeed a code is needed to
help create a level playing field in mixed pro/am events. But creating a
level playing field is about skills not cash. I have been designated a
category 2 because over the course of two years I tried to better my skills
by taking on any role in which I might learn to be a better sailor because
as we all know skills do not come overnight and take years of time and
opportunity to hone. Conversely, they do not disappear overnight as well.
Therefore, a designation as a category two's forces one to compete for
spots on crews with the likes of full time professional sailors.

Should a receptionist at a sail loft, a ship's captain or a travelift
operator be regarded in the same competitive light as a full time pro
sailor? Absolutely not, but they are. US Sailing and now the ISAF tell you
that an individual who has pro sailed for eight years, done two America's
Cups, but takes a couple of years off is an amateur. Yet an individual not
exposed to competitive sailing until after age 24 cannot feed himself,
because if he takes the requisite time and gets any money while learning
the myriad of necessary skills to be a proficient crew, is subject to

It's a sure sign that you've 'grown up' when your house plants are alive
and you can't smoke any of them.