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SCUTTLEBUTT 1609 - June 22, 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.

Newport R.I. - There were perfect conditions for racing on Monday, as a
classic sea breeze developed over Narragansett Bay. Strong southwest winds,
15 - 20 knots, whipped up a froth of whitecaps on the bay, and allowed the
crews to put on a fantastic display of match racing for the thousands of
spectators afloat and ashore.

(Pro-Driver Series - Race Five of 12) After an even start, Alinghi and BMW
Oracle raced on starboard tack towards the shoreline, with BMW Oracle's
leeward position allowing her to call for room. Both boats tacked
simultaneously, and BMW Oracle's skipper Gavin Brady was able to gently
nose ahead and eventually gaining enough to blanket Alinghi. Alinghi fought
hard to escape, but wasn't able to break coverage until the damage had been
done. BMW Oracle went on to lead by 22-seconds around the first mark and
held its advantage for the rest of the race. Finish Delta- 00:35

(Pro-Driver Series - Race Six of 12) Following a split start, BMW Oracle
found a small shift to the right and was able to use their starboard tack
advantage to control the first weather leg for a narrow seven-second lead
at the first weather mark. However, after BMW Oracle's sail shredded as it
went up, they defended their lead with an aggressive luff towards Alinghi,
who couldn't respond quickly enough and were assessed a penalty by the
umpires for not keeping clear. But in all the action, Brad Webb, the bowman
on BMW Oracle, fell overboard. He was picked up by a support boat and
returned to the racing yacht, but the Umpires assessed a penalty, canceling
the earlier Alinghi infraction. Responding to the aggressive luff in the
heavy conditions caused all sorts of problems to Alinghi's spinnaker and in
the end, BMW Oracle was able to hoist a new sail and get racing again more
quickly than Alinghi did, stretching to a 30-second lead around the bottom
mark which they held to the finish. Finish Delta- 00:48

Quotes of the Day
Peter Holmberg, Team Alinghi, assessing BMW Oracle's speed: "We pretty much
did what we wanted to do and we did it and we still came out short, so we
think they are going a little faster since we lined up last time. They are
going faster upwind than us, I think. We are faster downwind."

Josh Belsky, Team Alinghi, comparing the crew work by his team today, to
the one that won the America's Cup: "I can tell you that when we were
sailing in Auckland every day, in those conditions, you can do it in your
sleep. It's like clock work. When you get away from it for eight months,
and come back a week before…even the guys that were on the boat for every
race of the Louis Vuitton, and the America's Cup, you sit there and scratch
your heads a bit and say, 'I'm pretty sure we used to do it like this'.
Throw some new team members into that mix and it definitely adds a
challenge but by no means are we making any excuses. I think it's just a
question of us sailing together for a longer period of time before the next
event and gelling as a group a little bit better than we have for this

BMW Oracle racing leads the Pro-Driver series 5 points to 2 (Races 1
through 5 worth one point, Race 6 worth two points). Two Pro-Driver races
are scheduled for Tuesday. Event website:

Enjoy these Monday photos by Thierry Martinez:

Losing helmsman Russell Coutts would be a grievous blow to Alinghi and
their defence of the America's Cup, team owner Ernesto Bertarelli admitted
yesterday. "For me to find that he doesn't want to jump on an Alinghi boat
is a bit of surprise given that what I basically hired him for was
helming," Bertarelli said. "If the guy doesn't want to do his basic task,
we have a bit of problem."

Bertarelli also indicated that he would resist any attempt by Coutts to
join a rival team ahead of the America's Cup, which Alinghi will defend in
2007. "Right now, I need to protect the team more than anything," he said.
"I don't want to find myself in a Team New Zealand situation (when
Bertarelli hired Coutts away from the cup holders in 2000). Frankly, and
fortunately, I think I drafted my contracts a little better than Team New

Bertarelli's choice of Valencia as host city for 2007 is cited as one
example of Coutts's reduced influence. Coutts preferred Lisbon. "He
contributed, he was briefed," Bertarelli said. "But at the end of the day I
have to take some decisions. We can't change roles here." - Tim Jeffery,
Daily Telegraph, full story:

The Newport Bermuda race started, the UBS Trophy has started and Newport is
buzzing with activity. Team One Newport crew of experts helped sailors
prepare for the all conditions of the Bermuda race with their incredible
selection of Henri-Lloyd, Musto, Gill, Patagonia, Camet, Kaenon, Harken,
Native Eyewear, Extrasport, Lotus, Railriders, Sperry, Dubarry and more.
Team One even has the official UBS Trophy T-shirt for sale. Have a question
on what to wear? Try the "ask Martha" link on the website as she is in the
office and ready for your inquiry. For a catalog, call 800-VIP-GEAR or

A six-alarm fire that leveled the Island Yacht Club's 52-year-old clubhouse
and a decades-old collection of trophies and memorabilia left club members
in tears yesterday. A small grass fire that was lit behind the clubhouse -
probably by a group of kids - spread quickly yesterday afternoon, according
to Bruce Bussin, the club's commodore. Within minutes, the fire had spread
to the wooden building, which housed a dining room and lounge filled with
trophies, model boats and photographs chronicling the club's history.

At the first sign of fire yesterday afternoon some 10 sailing instructors,
sitting in the club's snack bar, tried to put out the blaze with fire
extinguishers. But they were no match for strong winds and the dry wood of
the single-storey white clubhouse nestled in a clump of trees. Toronto
firefighters said the lack of access to Mugg's Island hampered their response.

The club dates back to the early 1950s, when several Jewish sailors were
denied membership to Toronto's yacht clubs. The first members leased the
parcel of land on Mugg's Island and started the Island Yacht Club. The
clubhouse, which was insured, is likely to be rebuilt, Bruce Bussin said.
"We will rebuild and remain the summer home of very many people," he said.
But this season, at least, is lost. - Andrew Mills, Toronto Star, full

Hasso Plattner's new maxZ86 Morning Glory has pushed ocean racing into a
new era. The radical Reichel/Pugh design, with its patented canting
ballast, twin foil underwater keel and rudder configuration (CBTF) reached
the St David's Lighthouse finish at the end of the 635 mile Newport Bermuda
Race, having sliced a massive 5 hours off the existing race record.

"Their's is not a record, more a benchmark for the future" says John
Winder, the Newport/Bermuda Race Chairman, of Morning Glory's remarkable 48
hour 28 minute 51 secs. run. He and his joint organizing committee from the
Cruising Club of America and the Royal Bermuda YC have been walking
something of a tightrope in wanting to encourage leading edge developments
like Morning Glory and Roy Disney's second placed Pyewacket, but without
alienating or outclassing the 154 other yachts within the fleet.

Their answer was to allow these MaxZ86 racers, and Richard and Doug DeVos'
Windqest, an earlier Riechel/Pugh design fitted with water ballast rather
than a swing keel, to race in a special demonstration class. On corrected
time, Morning Glory also retained first place but Windquest beat out
Pyewacket for second. As of 8:49pm Bermuda time, only fourteen boats had
finished. - Event website:

(Sailing World Editor Tony Bessinger files this report while on the Newport
Bermuda race) June 21, 2004 - After three days, the 10-man crew of the Swan
45 Plenty, owned by Alex Roepers of Stonington, Conn., has already seen a
lot of what a Bermuda Race can offer. There's been fog and wind, fog and no
wind, no wind with sun, and then today, Sunday, the third day of sailing, a
glorious bout of running down the line with current, lots of breeze, and a
top speed of 19.2 knots.

Of course there's been some excitement. Last night around midnight (the
best time for trouble), we ended up with two spinnakers and a staysail
macrame'd together in knot so tight we had to take the three sails below to
get them untangled. Since we're in the Gulf Steam, where the water
temperatures are 80 degrees, it was a sweaty, maddening job. But it got
done, and we were belting along again soon.

We're about 275 miles from Bermuda, and sailing in an afternoon breeze
that's expected to die and go right. We'll keep plugging away and hope that
Monday's roll call puts us on top. - Sailing World, full story:

What an awesome idea. Imagine a pair of shorts that keeps you organized
with giant cargo pockets to store everything, parachute chords just in
case, flashlight holders, and plenty of places to attach those
whazamacallits that open, close, chop, slice, and dice everything. While
Camet hasn't yet created the Swiss Army Knife of shorts, they have
bomb-proofed and engineered their highly popular quick-drying Camet Padded
Sailing Shorts for crews to feel cool and comfortable on the weather rail.
These are a must-have for all regattas. Coolmax shirts, Rashguards, Bags
etc. Visit our swimwear page for the new Boardshorts.

The presentation of the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2004
will take place on Tuesday 9 November 2004 in Copenhagen, Denmark. ISAF
invites the world of sailing to submit nominations from which a shortlist
of sailors is drawn up. The ISAF Member National Authorities then cast
their votes to determine which sailors will take home the coveted award.
Anyone can be nominated provided that they meet the simple criteria of
"outstanding achievement during the period 1 September 2003 through to 31
August 2004. Nominations close at 1000 hours UTC on Monday 1 September 2004.

Sailors nominated may represent any discipline of the sport, from dinghies
to keelboats, windsurfers to multihulls, and their achievements may be as
diverse as a record breaking passage, a series of regatta wins or triumph
against the odds. Many success stories have already been seen over the past
few months and with the Olympic Sailing Competition in August, 2004 is
shaping up to be a tough fight. - ISAF,

Official Nomination Form:

Russell Coutts (SUI) and Siren Sundby (NOR) won the award in 2003. For
previous winners, go to

Three races in each fleet were completed today to start the U.S. Youth
Championship regatta in Charleston, SC. The leaders -- Bryan Buffaloe in
Laser (San Diego, CA), Cy Thompson in Radial (St. Thomas, VI) and Adam
Roberts/Nicholas Martin (San Diego, CA) - used superior heavy air boatspeed
and boat handling to secure their leads in spite of shifty winds.

The sailors raced trapezoid courses at the juncture of the Ashley and
Cooper Rivers. The first one-mile beat showcased the strongest and fittest
competitors. Cy Thompson from St. Thomas, Virgin Island dominated the
24-boat Radial fleet with three firsts, winning by a good margin in each
race. Bryan Buffaloe (San Diego, CA) was clearly the fittest Laser
participant in a tough 30-boat fleet. Bryan showed superior boatspeed,
especially on the upwind legs, and avoided traps to score three bullets today.

The 48-boat Club 420 fleet is stacked with talent, but Adam Roberts and
Nicholas Martin (San Diego, CA) exhibited superior speed and emerged among
the leaders on the first beat and finished the day with a 1-3-1 to lead by
just two points over Ben Sampson and Michael Komar (Plymouth, MA) with
scores of 4-1-2. - Lee Parks, US Sailing, full report:

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

Stan Honey joins host Bill Biewenga, Commanders' Weather and OPC
meteorologists to help you study the trends and options for the Pac Cup.
The WxLIVE! online interactive weather seminar is convenient to your
schedule. Mac Race workshops available. Join the June 25&27 online
interactive event.

(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 Larry Pierce: This Saturday my family and I were in Newport where we
moor our boat. We thought it would be interesting to watch the UBS Trophy
so we motored out of the harbor (10 minutes) and the 2 behemoths were just
about to duke it out. It was a blustery, crystal clear, day with the SW sea
breeze losing domination to a NW breeze filling from a frontal passage. In
our immediate visage were at least a dozen perfectly restored 12 meters
sailing around, J Class Endeavor, a Portuguese tall ship, countless mega
yachts, and the Quonset Air Show overhead with the Blue Angels performing
death-defying formations above. The 2 AC class monsters were so close that
I thought we would be run through when I misjudged where to position my
boat to watch the event. The magnificent Newport bridge to was to
starboard, historic Fort Adams to port, mansions dotting the coastline and
plenty of enthusiasm left in the fleet of spectators even though much of
the harbor had left the previous day for the Newport Bermuda race.
Sometimes I have to pinch myself to believe how lucky I am to be born near
the epicenter of sailing in the US. What a spectacle! I have been fortunate
to visit many a harbor here and abroad but nothing compares to Newport, RI.

* From Hal Smith: Thirty years ago, the same differences existed within
racing fleets as exist today. The club champion was somebody who was
consistently "lucky" to get the best wind shifts, etc. Coincidentally, he
usually also had the best sails, boat condition and latest design. Imagine
that. I remember having time after each race to gather in the clubhouse and
revel in our experiences of the day. It was fun. Today, there are so many
other things vying for our attention to have fun, that it is hard for slow
sailboat racing to compete. We are now a country of instant grits. Instead
of "no worries," the mantra is "no waiting." There used to be satisfaction
in carefully preparing your boat and patiently practice sailing to master
those perfect adjustments to finding the sweet spot on each point of sail.

Some of us have not changed. I still would prefer to be badly beaten by a
really good sailor, even a professional, than win a trophy by beating
refugees from a scrap heap. Unfortunately, we are now supposed to only be
equal and fair. It is a wonderful but unachievable notion. The only way I
will ever become the best I can be is to constantly have the standard
raised. I think it is more unfair to ensure mediocrity with quality limits
than to be challenged to be your best or at least dream of it. Fortunately,
we have one-design and handicap racing as choices. Suit up, have fun and
share the passion.

* From J A Booker, President, West Florida PHRF, Inc. (edited to our 250
word limit): Well, here we go again with the what's wrong with our sport
discussion. I'd like to point out that PHRF racing is not on the decline
everywhere. Here in West Florida we've issued 59% more rating certificates
in the last year. Fleet size today is over 650.

How'd we do it? We make it easy for anyone who's interested to come out and
race. Half or more of the increase comes from the addition of boats to our
True Cruising division. Skippers and crew are out there that have never
raced before and some of those will buy racing boats in the coming years.
Some of their crew will get the bug and want to sail in the spinnaker
division next year, or buy a boat of their own.

Make the rating application simple and accessible (we'll be renewing
certificates online this year) and consider a multi-tier rating to account
for performance differences on different courses. Make "experts" available
to answer questions, make suggestions and teach rules. Explain why cleaning
the bottom once every four or five months probably isn't enough. Sponsor
area Boat of the Year events and work with the clubs to provide quality
events. Keep the annual rating cost down to less that the cost of lunch for
one race. (Our's has been $25 for about ten years.)

Change your focus from what do they have to do to compete to what do we
have to do to get them to. It really does work.

* From Andy Colloton: When will the television decision makers realize that
while the audience might be smaller than they want, that same audience has
the demographics that should make the right advertisers foam at the mouth?
Where else can you get a demographic in one place that offers such
disposable income, a proven insatiable desire for all things new, and a
passion for consumption of the finer things in life? How many sailors are
also into other high-end sports? How many sailors drive nice cars? How many
sailors own more than two vehicles in a household? How many sailors have
performed some sort of capitol improvement to one of their houses in the
past 5 years? How many have been involved in investing/financial
planning/or estate management recently? How many sailor's kids will
inevitably follow in their parent's purchasing habits? How many travel?
Seems to me it is an advertising sales issue here, not a lack of an
audience. It is just a question of reaching out to the right companies.

SITCOMS: Single Income, Two Children, Oppressive Mortgage. What yuppies
turn into when they have children and one of them stops working to stay
home with the kids.