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SCUTTLEBUTT 1596 - June 3, 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.

Britain's GBR America's Cup challenge is nearing financial viability and
negotiations with leading overseas sailors to form the afterguard of the
race crew are well advanced, team management say. Gordon Moultrie, who
joined GBR as team principal in March, said that, barring a major setback,
the team would have a title sponsor "within weeks". GBR is negotiating with
four companies, described as "global brands", and expects one or more of
them come on board. Challenge chairman Peter Harrison has pledged up to £20
million of his own money, with the budget for the 2007 Cup, to be raced off
Valencia, projected at £50 million. Though a background figure in this
second challenge by GBR, Moultrie said that Harrison was "absolutely
committed to us, emotionally and financially".

In a fortnight when two of Britain's gold medallists, Ben Ainslie and Iain
Percy, have committed to foreign syndicates, Moultrie said that GBR was
talking to previous skipper Ian Walker as well as pursuing foreign sailors.
Design boss Derek Clark said: "We have always said that we will augment our
experience where we feel there is a need, both in the crew and design
team." Although he would not name them, Clark said that the sailors in
question had Cup experience and were of the highest caliber. - Tim Jeffery,
The Daily Telegraph, full story:

Valencia, Spain ­ 2nd June, 2004 ­ AC Management announced the Jury for the
32nd America's Cup. As per the Protocol for the 32nd America's Cup, the
five members of the Jury have been appointed by the Société Nautique de
Genève, and the Golden Gate Yacht Club (representing the Challengers

The members of the Jury are:
- Gabrielle Kaufmann-Kohler (SUI)
- Graham McKenzie (NZL)
- Henry Menin (ISV)
- David Tillet (AUS)
- Bryan Willis (GBR), Chairman

The Jury for the 32nd America's Cup will have broad responsibilities for
dispute resolution in the areas of racing disputes normally handled by an
International Jury appointed under Appendix M of the Racing Rules of
Sailing, and some commercial disputes that may arise between persons or
entities under the Jury's jurisdiction. On the 29th May, 2004, the Jury
issued its Rules of Procedures and it began operations effective that date.

Biographies of the jury member have been posted on the Scuttlebutt website:

The Gorge - Collegiate Sailors racing the Gill NA Dinghy Championships for
the Henry A. Morss Trophy were greeted this morning with sunny skies and no
wind, but the breeze filled in just in time for some practice before
starting the races. Winds were consistent 8-12 from the west all day, with
lighter current than the last week. After six races in both the A& B
Divisions the leaders are:

1. Dartmouth College, 25-20, 45
2. U. of Hawaii ,21-33, 54
3. Georgetown, 40-48, 88
4. St. Mary's College, 51-37, 88
5. Hobart William Smith, 49-44, 93

Tornado, Sabots, Yngling, 470's, J/105, Schock 35, Etchells, Acat's, Farr
40, 505, Cal 20, Coronado 15, Fireball, J/24, CFJ, 420, Europe Dinghy,
Harbor 20, International 14, J/22, Holder 20, Flying Scot, Lido 14, Lehman
12, Lightning, Melges 24, Optimist, Snipe, Thistle, Cal 25, Soling, Sonar,
Santana 20, Santana 30/30, Capri 14.2, El Toro, Ultimate 20, Flying Junior,
J/80, Hobie 21, San Juan 24, Nacra, Prindle , J/120, Antrim 27, Olson 30,
Mumm 30, J/109. Ullman Sails has been one designing 30+ years, give your
local loft a call or visit us at

When Blondie Hasler originally conceived the OSTAR (as The Transat was
previously known) the idea was for the event to be a challenge, hence it is
not fully crewed nor does it run in the same direction as the prevailing
wind conditions. The competitors in the 2004 race are to receive first hand
experience of what Hasler had in mind, as in the next 24-48 hours they will
experience their first major North Atlantic gale of the race complete with
50 knot headwinds and giant waves coming from exactly the direction they
want to sail.

All the competitors are aware of the impending weather and will be doing
all they can to ensure that they can not only survive it, but remain
competitive. On the 60ft multihulls skippers have the benefit of being able
to talk to shore-based routers who can advise them of the best course of
action, but on the IMOCA monohulls this practice is prohibited and the task
of routing is entirely down to the skipper who are able to use 'publicly
available' weather sources such as website with meteorologicial information.

The southerly gamble taken by leading Open 60 monohull, Virbac skippered by
Jean-Pierre Dick, paid off and the Frenchman reports that he caught the
new, southwest wind before the rest of the fleet. Dick has managed 2.5
hours sleep overnight, taking his total to 5 hours since the start, but was
unable to risk resting during the variable, tricky winds during his passage
through the high pressure ridge, preferring to constantly manoeuvre Virbac
through the light airs.

The race across the Atlantic is not merely a game of tactics and staying
awake for as long as possible. The greatest distraction from racing is when
breakage or damage occurs. The breakdown of the keel pump motor has forced
Golding to improvise, using a combination of gravity and muscle power to
wind the bulb from side to side. As he predicted yesterday, light winds
have proven to be the toughest conditions for coping with this handicap.
"I'm having to double-tack the boat to get the keel to where I want it,"
said Golding. During the light and fluky headwinds that prevailed during
the ridge's arrival, Golding had to go through a laborious process of
tacking to get the keel where he wanted it and then tacking back on to his
original heading with the keel now in its correct position.

Tuesday has seen a spate of boats damaged through collisions with floating
objects. This morning Groupama skipper Franck Cammas reported that he had
collided with a whale that brought the boat to a halt. His boat's
daggerboard is still intact but there is some superficial damage to the
board's case. Both Karine Fauconnier and Yves Parlier in the 60ft
multihulls class have admitted collisions with large submerged pieces of
wood that have hit their rudders. Fortunately, on Fauconnier's trimaran
Sergio Tacchini the centre of her three rudders is fitted with a safety
system that allows the rudder to 'pop up' in the event of a collision. This
worked but Fauconnier said she had lost 1.5 hours securing the rudder back
in its 'down' position. Yves Parlier, on board Médiatis Région Aquitanian
struck a log and had to slow down his pace. The starboard hull was damaged
40 cm of trailing edge. Four hours were necessary to resolve the damage.
Most recently Swiss skipper Steve Ravussin has reported that his main
rudder (the trimarans have three, one on each hull) has broken. Ravussin
says that he is continuing. Class leaders at 0300 June 3:

ORMA 60 Multis: 1. Geant, Michel Desjoyeaux, 1819 miles to finish; 2
Sodebo, Thomas Coville, 21 mi. distance to leader. 3. Banque Populaire,
Lalou Roucayrol, 43 dtl 4. Sopra Group, Philippe Monne 55 dtl;

IMOCA Open 60 Monohulls: 1. Virbac, Jean-Pierre Dick, 2130 mtf; 2. Ecover,
Mike Golding, 28; 3. PRB, Vincent Riou, 32 dtl

Open 50 Multihulls: 1. Trilogic, Eric Bruneel, 2160 mtf; 2. Crepes Whaou!,
F. Y. Escofier, 41 dtl

Open 50 Monohulls: 1. Artforms, Kip Stone, 2287 mtf; 2. Wells Fargo -
American Pioneer, Joe Harris, 27 dtl.

Event website:

Last weekend, Australian Peter Gilmour, skipper of the multi-national
Pizza-La Sailing Team, clinched the championship of the Swedish Match Tour
2003-'04 by finishing second at the ACI HTmobile Cup. This year on the Tour
they've won approximately $85,000 and could surpass $100,000 in event prize
money after upcoming regattas in Germany and Sweden. Additionally, they are
assured of winning $60,000 of the $200,000 bonus purse offered by Tour
sponsor Swedish Match for the top eight on the final leaderboard.

The Pizza-La Sailing Team, which Gilmour refers to as the "United Nations,"
features crewmembers Rod Dawson (Auckland, New Zealand), Mike Mottl
(Sydney, Australia), Kazuhiko Sofuku (Niigata, Japan) and Yasuhiro Yaji
(Tokyo, Japan). Their mastery of the tour is evident in the statistics.
They've posted an 85-32 record for a .726 winning percentage. They've
totaled 117 of a possible 150 points, earning 19.5 points per regatta. (By
comparison, Jesper Radich scored 18.5 points per regatta last year in
winning the championship with 111 points.)

Although Gilmour has clinched the championship, the standings below him are
far from settled. Match Race Germany (June 8-13) and Swedish Match Cup
(July 7-11) offer skippers two more chances to move around in the
standings. The tightest battle is for second place. Sweden's Magnus
Holmberg holds second with 64 points, and New Zealander Gavin Brady,
helmsman for the BMW Oracle Racing America's Cup syndicate, is third, 9
points behind. Holmberg won't compete in Germany, but Brady will and just
has to finish in the top five to overtake Holmberg before the concluding
event. - Sean McNeill,

The singlehanded Bongo is comfortable, fast and fun. Look for the Bongo
coming your way on its nationwide tour. Sign up your club or group for a
fun-filled Bongo demo day, and join the growing fleet. Bongo sailors have
fun every day.

* San Diego yachtsman Randall Pittman's new Dubois-designed 90-foot sloop,
Genuine Risk, has just been launched and is undergoing final sea trials in
Sydney, Australia, before being packed up and shipped to San Diego.
Designed by a team headed up by Dubois Naval Architects and including
America's Cup veterans Clay Oliver and Andy Claughton, Genuine Risk - built
by McConaghy Marine in Australia - joins Pyewacket and Morning Glory as the
third big CBTF (Canting Ballast - Twin Foil) boat to be launched this year.

* The first day for the Trofeo TAB, Blurimini 2004 match race Grade 2 ISAF
saw wind of 5-8 knots for 25 matches, followed by the public on the Marina
di Rimini walking area on sea front. Favourites Karol Jablonski and James
Spithill have had a difficult start, loosing the first two match. At the
end of the day, only one skipper is undefeated - Brit Ian Williams (4-0),
followed by Frenchman Mathieu Richard (3-1) and the Italian, Matteo
Simoncelli (3-1). Karol Jablonski from Poland is 3-2 in fourth. -

* USA finished third of eighteen countries at the 38th World Military
Sailing Championships held at the Spanish Naval Academy in Marin, Spain in
15 1/2 foot Snipes. The US Team was Navy Lt. R.D. Burley, a flight
instructor in Pensacola Florida, and Marine Cpt. Fran Clemens, an
instructor in the Leadership Department at the Naval Academy. The
championship is held annually by the Conseil International Du Sport
Militaire. CISM is made up of 128 countries and sponsors championships in
24 sports. Russia won the championships with 15 pts. France (24 pts) was
second with Spain (44) finishing fourth.

* More than eight months before the starts next February, 21 boats and
crews are already gearing up for Del Rey Yacht Club's 2005 race to Puerto
Vallarta. The first entries are split almost evenly between 11 in the
Racing Division and 10 in the Salsa group, the division for skippers who
prefer to break up the race into three legs but still enjoy the thrill of a
competitive long-distance blue water event. The Notice of Race, entry
information request form and event details are available online at:

* Last week, Le Défi's bright-yellow FRA 69 (repaints into red livery) was
packed off on a truck with two masts, five containers and a chase-boat
christened "Le Monstre" (The Monster) for a 2000 km journey towards
Valencia, Spain. The convoy is expected to reach the Real Club Náutico de
Valencia tomorrow as four containers and the appendages were delivered
today in Spain. - Cup in Europe full story:

"A strange atmosphere, like sailing through soft cotton. The feeling of
speed is intense... with nothing visual to register on [there has been
under 300m visibility] except our wake, we seemed to be flying along in
14-15 knots of wind and a gentle, long swell." - Thomas Coville, Transat
skipper of the 60ft trimaran Sodebo.

Chris Larson lives in his boat shoes most of year and needs something cool,
comfortable and fast-drying. He says, "Henri Lloyd's new Deck Grip Profile
is the perfect solution. They're incredibly light, comfortable and have
great traction." With a design based on running footwear technology, they
deliver vertical and lateral stability and high performance. "They've
really done their homework with the compounds on the sole, and it shows,"
adds Chris, "offering softer compounds where needed for better grip on the
deck." He's impressed; you will be too.

(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 Richard Clark: "What's the weather going to be like?" "I came over
in February and cut off the stern," Birch says.

These stories are the far ends of the spectrum of sailing that I love and
hate. Surely and maybe I am missing something, to race for and represent
your country at the Olympics is an ideal that is beyond Americas Cup style
weather teams and such. Sure weather is important but how does Togo compete
with the US on this level, surely the pre-Olympic regatta is enough. What
ever happened to whetting one's finger and holding it in the air, it is all
becoming so bloody technical and elitist - and then I calm down when I read
of Mike Birch with no sponsorship, simply doing what he loves, sailing.

We really have made life complex and unweildy for ourselves. And don't get
me started on coaches in inflatables at regatta's, sheesh! P-class yachts
previously owned by dad, launched off the beach and raced by kids, that's
the way sailing should be learnt. Maybe a Corinthian class for the
Olympics! Whatever boat you want, what ever size, shape, sex, colour, crew
you want, towed around Europe behind a VW Kombi van competing at local
regattas, aaah!

* From Chuck Sherfey (Re Noel M. Field Jr's. note about the US Sailing
Appeals Committee's decision): I think the registration desk volunteer, the
protested sailors and the US Sailing Appeals Committee got it right. The
notice of race stated: "Division I sailors must not have reached their 15th
birthday during the 2003 calendar year." The words "must not have" imply
that this decision is to be made at the time of entry or at the time the
races are sailed. Mr. Field, his fellow jury members and the association
appeals committee apparently read this to mean, "Division I sailors' 15th
birthdays must occur January 1, 2004 or later."

The actual notice of race wording has problems other than the one which
caused the protest and appeals. For example, were 16 year olds eligible in
Division I? I doubt they were intended to be eligible, but the wording used
makes them eligible. My suggested wording to accomplish what I believe to
be the organizing authority's intent: "Only sailors born January 1, 1989 or
later are eligible for Division I." English is a tough language. Organizing
authorities need someone (or several people) with expertise in racing
rules, regatta objectives and the language in which the various regatta
documents are written.

* From Jerry Kaye: (Regarding Noel M. Field Jr., Senior US Sailing Judge's
description of the 'logic' used by the Appeals Committee): A recent
west-coast addition to the Appeals Committee may have exacerbated the
problem and caused what little common sense was left to go overboard. Best
advice, double-check entries, do your turn(s) and stay the hell out of the

* From Carl Schellbach (Re the Registration Error incident): As the
divisions started and raced together, might it have been appropriate for
the jury to have rescored the competitors in the proper division? Or would
that have opened a can of worms with the competitors that "didn't think
they were racing against this boat" or other arguments. There seems to be
lots of issues at stake here, but I agree that the ultimate responsibility
should lie with the competitor, especially in a self-policing sport such as

* From Charles J. Doane: I read with great interest the account of Transat
competitor Mike Golding having to shift the canting keel on Ecover by hand
due to a pump failure, as this raises an issue I have been wondering about
for some time. If competitors are not allowed to use motors and such to
help them hoist and trim sails while racing, why is it they are allowed to
use them to help shift ballast? What is the distinction between the two?
Golding's predicament of having to lay the boat over on its side to tack it
seems to me a perfect illustration of why it might be wise to limit all
load handling on race boats, particularly ocean racing boats, to manual
powered systems.

* From Count Enrico Ferrari: The Transat race has an interesting outcome
already, that would be to see if Mike Golding on Ecover, the Open 60', will
opt for a canting keel for his next outing. I am sure he has heard of the
KISS principle but perhaps now he is becoming an avid supporter. The search
for more speed and performance demands a price and he is paying for it now
with a broken hydraulic pump. As a self professed efficiency worshiper,
(work avoidance 101) I salute him and his kind on the edge of performance
as they figure out how to do it faster and showing me the way to not do it.

Stress is when you wake up screaming and then you realize you haven't
fallen asleep yet.