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SCUTTLEBUTT 1632 - July 26, 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.

Winds of change are blowing in the IMS Spanish fleet, after most of the big
teams have started to run out of patience. The costs in the IMS 500 Class
started to become untenable once the size of the boats passed through the
50ft mark. Then the Spanish Federation allowed the Spanish Championship to
grow to 16 races, so crews needed to work pretty much full time. Ever
since, there have been fewer boats in the fleet but they have been ever
more competitive, which leads to boats being renewed more and more frequently.

The costs simply spiraled. Boats used to last for three or four seasons,
with one or two adjustments made to appendages and sailplan. But evolution
in designs, and more particularly, the equipment war, is forcing teams to
change their boats after two to three seasons at most. This requires a lot
of money, as well as imposing huge dedication and demanding the best from
the IMS rule itself.

Besides, the boats themselves are not very sensible as they try to trick
the GPH; a lot of carbon in their construction with thousands of kilos of
lead in their bilges, plus light, false keels made of wood and foam. Thus
secondhand sale of these racers is not simple; in Spain there are now no
more customers for a boat that is big, uncompetitive and expansive to
maintain. - Excerpt from a story by Carlos Pich in the August issue of
Seahorse magazine, available at West Marine stores. -

The Transpac 52 Mediterranean Fleet was formed on Saturday in Puerto
Portals on the Island of Mallorca, Spain, with five boats firmly committed
- three from Spain, one from Italy and one from Greece. H.M. Juan Carlos
has been my very gracious host along with Jose Cusi the owner of Bribon the
current IMS boat the King helms. Over dinner and a cigar with the Bribon
crew, the King told me of his enthusiasm for helming a TP 52 next year and
his support for the TP 52 class.

The TP 52 Med Fleet owners have already agreed to the 2005 Race schedule, a
mixture of six relatively short offshore & coastal races and
windward/leeward buoy races at exciting venues in the Med. They wish to
begin in early June with a mixed regatta in Punta Alla, Italy, a
spectacular 250 mile race from St Tropez France to Italy (Giralla) in Mid
June, a regatta in Valencia Spain in early July, the Breitling Regatta in
the exclusive Puerto Portals, Mallorca in later July; the Copa del Rey
(King's Cup) in early August and a buoy regatta mid September in Sardinia.

The Med Fleet wants all the TP 52 owners worldwide to know they can come to
the Med and sail according to the box rule and class bylaws. In a survey,
100% of them voted to be part of the TP 52 Class and also to form their own
fleet association. They were all in agreement concerning a weight limit
adopted by the class and look forward to that issue formally ratified by
the class. - Tom Pollack, Transpac 52 Executive Director

An all-day Handicap Racing Seminar sponsored by the Storm Trysail Club was
held at the Larchmont Yacht Club, Wednesday, July 21. Representatives of
One Design classes, PHRF, IMS, Americap, Box Rules, ORCA, Caribbean Sailing
Association (CSA) Rule and the International Rule Club (IRC) joined with
members of US Sailing and area yacht clubs last week to discuss the status
of existing handicap racing rules and the future of these rules as related
to big boat racing in North America.

"After much debate, the consensus of attendees seemed to indicate that PHRF
is a very good system for entry level racing and top level racing is
accommodated by box rules for the moment," Storm Trysail Club Commodore
Dick Neville said. "There is a great need for a simple and efficient
'mid-level' rule to accommodate the majority of handicap racing sailors.
The two rules that seem to work best are Americap and IRC.

IRC, with nearly 6,000 certificates issued to boats in 31 Countries, seems
to be the handicap rating rule for the future of the majority of the
world's big boat sailing regattas. As a growing international rule with
seven years of success and a positive, easy-to-follow marketing package,
IRC seems favored to fill this role of a mid-level rule. We're looking
forward to a healthy dialog as sailors come to grips with this issue," said
Commodore Neville, summing up the day's deliberations. - Keith Taylor

Breathable white-fronted battened hiking shorts, cooling UV sailing shirts
and farmer johns, droop hiking suits, gloves and knees sleeves are the
regatta weapons most requested by sailors from around the world preparing
for the Athenian Games. Look for them on sailors from New Zealand,
Australia, Canada, United States, Sweden, Denmark, Spain, and Bermuda to
mention a few, as they strive for optimal performance. Designed for gold,
with you in mind! Buy them at APS, Layline and
and let's go sailing!

Mike Sanderson, from Whangarei, New Zealand has joined Team ABN AMRO as
skipper on their first boat for its 2005-2006 Volvo Ocean Race campaign.
Sanderson has sailed in the Whitbread and Volvo Ocean Race previously and
is an experienced canting keel sailor. Sanderson, along with the
syndicate's Technical Director Roy Heiner, will select the crew for the
boat that is due to be launched at the end of 2004. Juan Kouyoumdjian, has
designed the boat, which is currently being constructed by Killian Bushe in
Lelystad, the Netherlands.

Sanderson, 33, started sailing when he was five. Having won many national
titles, he was invited to be the trimmer onboard Grant Dalton's New Zealand
Endeavour, winner of the maxi division of the Whitbread 1993-94. In the
1997-98 Whitbread, Mike was watch captain and sail co-ordinator on Dalton's
W60 Merit Cup, which finished second. He is also the current record holder
in the Sydney-Hobart Race and has been mainsheet trimmer for two America's
Cup campaigns - Tag Heuer in 1995 and Oracle BMW in 2003. -

Ekaterinberg, Russia - Ed Baird, sailing with Jon Ziskind, Brad Webb and
Andy Horton, successfully defended his crown to become the 2004 ISAF Match
Racing World Champion. The event was hampered by very air that forced a
format change. The final results were determined by the results of the
double round robin. Final Results:

1. Ed Baird (USA) 17
2. Karol Jablonski (POL) 16
3. Philippe Presti (FRA) 14
4. Eugeniy Neugodnikov (RUS) 12
5. Staffan Lindberg (FIN) 12
6. Bjorn Hanson (SWE) 11
7. Maxim Taranov (RUS) 10
8. Ian Williams (GBR) 9
9. Paolo Cian (ITA) 9
10. Mathieu Richard (FRA) 8
11. Andrew Arbozov (RUS) 7
12. Johnie Berntsson (SWE) 7

Event website:

Salinas, Ecuador - Without needing to sail the final race 13 year-old Wei
Ni from Shanghai, China is the 2004 Optimist world champion. His results
have been remarkable, - apart from one race, he was never out of the top
ten. Wei weighs 40kg and measures 1.55m. He used, like maybe 30% of the
fleet, a Toni Tio sail from Spain and used the standard McLaughlin foils
supplied with the charter boat.

Lukasz Przybytek (POL), in silver overnight, was black-flagged.
Unfortunately he did not appear to be aware of this and understandably
match-raced his main rival Daniel Willcox (NZL) leaving Eugenio Diaz (ESP)
to win that race and with it the bronze medal. In the final start Paul
Snow-Hansen (NZL) had no close rivals to worry about and won with ease to
secure silver. Among the girls an OCS by Susannah Pyatt (NZL) gave the
remaining bronze medal to Stephanie Roble (USA) despite a late challenge by
Griselda Khng (SIN). Mexican sailors Diego Reyes and Erik Brockman finished
13 - 14, while the top US competitor was Austen Anderson in 20th place.

Coming to Ecuador was for many a leap into the unknown. Salinas is not one
of the famous venues of the world like last year's Gran Canaria or next
year's Silvaplana. No one knew much about the weather. What we got was a
venue with utterly reliable 10-16 knot winds shifting subtly under 100%
cloud cover to tax the most talented sailors. Turnout was 75% up on the
last time we visited South America in 1992, with a new record of 51
countries, and those Europeans who found the travel too expensive can
console themselves in Sweden next month when eleven additional countries
are expected to bring the European Championship fleet to over 40 nations.
IODA, and the 228 sailors, are glad we came. - Robert Wilkes,

Sperry Top-Sider, the conquistadors of the open seas have one more notch in
their belt of accolades. The Shamu trainers at Sea World, a.k.a., "The
Dream Team," have designated the Figawi Zip as their footwear
extraordinaire. The Figawi Zip is the latest in performance wear that
combines high-tech material with good old fashion ingenuity. Some of the
custom features of the Figawi Zip are molded rubber mudguard with drainage
ports, Aegis Microbial Shield kills bacteria that cause odor and
Non-Marking Super-Tack Rubber Outsole™ and Quadro-Grip Wave-Siping™ provide
superior wet or dry traction. -

It's all off ... till Monday at least ­ in what has been a decidedly windy
edition of the Tour de France ŕ la Voile. After the two courses held off
Gruissan Saturday in 30 knot gusts, the Mumm 30 fleet were particularly
geared up for a potentially record breaking dive towards Marseille under
spinnaker off the plains of the Camargue. Sensibleness has proved to be the
winner of today's proceedings however. Allowing a fleet of Mumm 30s to set
off on a 100 mile dash with a special weather warning in force was not on
the Race Committee's agenda today. In an attempt to avoid sailing under the
cover of darkness, the unshakeable Sylvie Viant took the decision to put
off the start until 0900 hours tomorrow. Whether this will actually be the
case remains to be seen with no let up forecast in the Lion Gulf.

As regards the ranking, the scoop of the day is the attributing of 10
penalty points to the leading boat, American Deneen Demourkas' Groovederci.
On the first leg Saturday, their spinnaker blew and the Race Committee
allowed them to sail with a replacement spinnaker recuperated just in time
for the second start. However, with the original spinnaker not able to be
repaired, they will have to continue with this new spinnaker and this
change has cost them 10 points in accordance with the sailing instructions.
With this alteration Bouygues Telecom is just 12 points from the blue
leader's spinnaker. - Translation: Kate Jennings,

* Australia's Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club swept the team from the Royal
New Zealand Yacht, 3-0 to win the Balboa YC's 38th Governor's Cup Regatta -
an ISAF Grade 3 international match race for sailors under 20 years of age.
The Cruising Yacht Club of Australia finished third. Invitations to the
Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron's International Youth Regatta in November
were given to the top two American teams - Del Rey YC (4th) and Newport
Harbor YC (5th). Del Rey YC was also invited to send a team to Cowes Youth
Week 2005 in England. -

* Under partly cloudy skies, and a moderate northeasterly breeze, 186 boats
in 13 classes completed 4 days of racing for the Sailing World NOOD at
Marblehead Race Week on Sunday. Final result are posted:

* For the 83 boats competing in the 'second half' of the New York Yacht
Club Race Week at Newport presented by Rolex, Sunday's two races held in
strong, 15-17 knot breeze were a welcome finish to three days of racing in
eight one-design classes. Tom Coates' J/105 Masquerade was named "Best
Performing One Design Boat," and Coates was awarded a Rolex timepiece. Over
180 boats competed in the fourth running of the event. The biennial Race
Week hosted 79 entries in the four-day 'first half,' devoted to IMS, PHRF,
Classic Yacht and 12 Meter racing. - Complete results:

* At our distribution time, Randall Pitman's Dubois 90 Genuine Risk was the
only boat to have finished the Chicago Mackinac Race - finishing at
23:26:44 Sunday evening, for an elapsed time of one day, eight hours, 56
minutes and 44 seconds . The times posted at the 45th parallel showed that
Genuine Rick had a 26 minute lead over Ryan and Todd Howe's 60 multihull,
Earth Voyager, and was 51 minutes ahead of the maxZ86, Windquest, sailed by
Dick and Doug DeVos. Interestingly, all four Transpac 52s were ahead of the
first of the Great Lakes 70s, Peter Thornton's Holua. -

* Sailing Course dot com is a US Sailing website, has a new easy-to-use
Flash navigational interface. The site currently houses six sailing courses
and one powerboating course, with a total of eight online computer graded
tests - 660 text documents with 254,000 words of text, numerous pictures
and illustrations. 89 Video Presentations, 16 animated gifs, six PowerPoint
presentations, eight Flash presentations, and two interactive Java
programs. Recent website expansions include "Introduction to Sailboat
Racing," for the beginning racer, which is divided into two parts, "Basics
of Sailboat Racing" and "The Basic Rules Of Sailboat Racing."

You can find Vanguard later this week as a sponsor at the US Junior Women's
Singlehanded Championships for the Leiter Trophy in Bay Head, NJ, July 31st
- August 6th. The Leiter is raced in Laser Radials. For results, updates
and more info visit and

(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 Sir Robin Knox-Johnston: What is terrifying about the report on
rogue waves is not that they exist, sailors have known that for centuries,
but that scientists refused to even accept that the sailors stories might
be accurate. How many sailors lives have been lost because officialdom
failed to accept the fact of frequent rogue waves and insist on designs and
scantlings capable of withstanding them?

* From Stephen A. Van Dyck: As a life long ocean sailor I was interested in
your reprinting of the Yahoo "rouge waves" article. As the Chairman of a
NYSE tanker company and Intertanko, the world's tanker owner/ operators
entity, I would like to correct a factual misstatement in the article that
I know will interest those who sail the oceans. It is simply not true that
"super tankers" have sunk/ disappeared from rouge waves. We know of no such
accident. It is true that very large bulk carriers (coal, ore, etc) have
sunk or disappeared, but in conditions often known to be far less severe
than produce rouge waves. There are design/ construction/ scantling/
maintenance issues with some bulkers, leading to the loss of about 500
seaman in ten years. What is impressive to me is how well most vessels
tolerate the enormous loads imposed by extreme storm/rouge wave conditions.
The scientific satellite work on rouge waves is very important and valuable
even if the journalistic "supertanker" facts were wrong.

* From Tom Cain: Rogue and Tidal wave stories strike a raw nerve in most
sailors….a real ongoing attention getter. If there are that many rouge
waves running around out there…then why don't the deep sea tidal buoys pick
up these variations? And if they do…is nothing said about it? How come
these waves do not make it to shore? Or they?

* From Charles-Justin Nichols, avocet, Canada (re changes to the America's
Cup protocol): My formation as a lawyer makes me very sensible about
backdated rules. The modern justice systems rarely allow laws to be
retrospective. The reason is simple: you don't want to be penalized for an
act that was legal possible at the time it happened. Actually the
occidental society condemned very strongly the last government to have a
wide use of such a practice. The German Nazi government made illegal
numerous gestures after they happened, such as some specific reunions,
supporting after they were handed out the dire sanctions this regime is now
known from.

The recent modification is doing exactly that, and is visibly done towards
one individual, which is even more condemnable under constitutional law.
Alinghi has just undone what was to be its greatest contribution to the
Cup, being making it possible for sailors and designs to find new homes in
other lands. It was a great thought, but the way the Swiss act when their
personal interest is at play saddens me. It is very sad to see that '86
feet high' spoiled attitude reign on the America's Cup. I'm left to whish
the best of luck to the Cayard-Coutts Initiative. They are right in that
the excitement should be on the water!

* From Nicholas Stark: Gee, imagine my surprise that a race sponsored by a
booze company, the Bayview Mac, didn't have a wrap up report or
dissemination of results. So just what is it that Bacardi does for that
event - to give away free drinks to rich people? Brilliant sponsorship
strategy! And anyone who replies that Bacardi's sponsorship helps to keep
the entry fees low probably ought to consider that a different title
sponsor, even one that pays less money than Barcardi, might help to bring
in other sponsors, all of whom can no doubt be of greater benefit to the
event and sport.

* From Chuck Hawley (Regarding Fred Roswold's comments on Randy Repass's
new boat, Convergence): I think there may be some misunderstanding on the
need to reef this powerful cat ketch. I sailed on Convergence several times
with Randy and Sally-Christine before they departed for French Polynesia,
and we reefed the main on both occasions, although at higher windspeeds
than might have been the case with a conventionally-rigged boat. The winds
in Santa Cruz in the early summer are generally around 20-25 knots a few
miles offshore, and we saw over 30 knots apparent. I think the point is
that the unstayed rigs depower with each puff, bending off to leeward
without actually flogging the sail, so that the rig appears to select the
correct "gear" for the conditions. Owners of Wylie cats have reported this
for years; now Wylie ketch owners are experiencing it!

What's really exciting to me is to see how perfectly both sails set without
the intrusion of a boom along their feet (foots?) The wishboom booms create
a sail which looks efficient from luff to clew, much more like a genoa than
a conventional mains'l. We were able to hit 13.6 knots on a broad reach
with excellent control, and with a very broad range of downwind angles that
could be sailed without risking an accidental gibe. Truly an innovative and
powerful boat.

* From Heath Brunson: Does anyone else wonder why there are 1150 bronze
medals and only 986 gold and silver medals being made for the Olympics?

Why is it that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone
driving faster than you is a maniac?