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SCUTTLEBUTT 1653 - August 24, 2004

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ATHENS - 2004
Comebacks in two classes and good maintenance in another highlighted the
USA's day at the Olympic Regatta in Athens. A northern breeze, what the
Greeks call a Meltemi, materialized but failed to pump up the winds to
their radical norm. U.S. sailors called the breezes frustratingly shifty
but managed them nicely.

In Tornado class, John Lovell (New Orleans, La.) and Charlie Ogletree
(Houston, Texas/ Columbia, N.C.) held on to their top spot on the
scoreboard after turning in two ninth-place finishes, one of which they
count as a throwout. After a shaky start in the first race, the team's
successful attempt to climb from seventh to fourth was negated by a
spinnaker retrieval line that got looped around their onboard camera. "It
pulled the patch out of the sail and Charlie had to climb out to manually
stuff the spinnaker back in its storage tube," said Lovell. "Having a guy
out there on the bow is not fast."

Star sailors Paul Cayard (Kentfield, Calif.) and Phil Trinter (Lorain,
Ohio/Port Washington, N.Y.) climbed back to fourth overall today, after
having fallen to seventh yesterday. It took one race and a third-place
finish to do it. (Due to a dying breeze, a second race was postponed until
tomorrow.) The team had to fight back from 12th at one point and outsmart
the fluky winds. "You can't ever get used to the conditions here," said
Trinter. "It's more a matter of controlling your frustrations."

The 49er class used a reserve day today to catch up on their schedule,
which was missing a race from yesterday. U.S. sailors Tim Wadlow (San
Diego, Calif.) and Pete Spaulding (Miami, Fla.), who had fallen to sixth
yesterday, picked themselves back up today, taking a third-place finish and
climbing to fourth overall. "It was a very difficult third," said
Spaulding. "A 10-15 knot breeze came in before the start. It was very shifty.

The Mistral class resumed racing today after a day off, with both the men's
and women's divisions completing two races. Lanee Butler Beashel (Aliso
Viejo, Calif.) sailed her throwout, a 19th, and then finished 15th in the
second race. She dropped one position to 17th overall. "There really isn't
anything wrong or missing," said Butler. "I'm sailing as best I can, and
against the same women I sailed against in Sydney. They've just all gotten
that much better." - Full story:

Tornado - 17 boats (6 of 11 races with one discard)
1. USA, John Lovell/Charlie Ogletree, 20
2. AUT, Roman Hagara/Hans Peter Steinacher, 21
3 ARG, Santiago Lange/ Carlos Espinola, 25

Star - 17 boats (5 of 11 races with one discard)
1. BRA, Torben Grael/Marcelo Ferreira, 8
2. CAN, Ross MacDonald/Mike Wolfs, 15
3. DEN, Nicklas Holm/ Claus Olesen, 19
4. USA, Paul Cayard/Phil Trinter, 20
16. BER, Peter Bromby/Lee White, 47

49er - 19 boats (12 of 16 races with two discards)
1. ESP, Iker Martinez/Xavier Fernaandez, 46
2. GBR, Chris Draper/Simon Hiscocks, 55
3. UKR, Rodion Luka/George Leonchuk, 55
4. USA, Tim Wadlow/Pete Spaulding, 60

Mistral Women - 26 boards (10 of 11 races with one discard)
1. ITA, Alessandra Sensini, 27
2. FRA, Faustine Merret, 29
3. CHN, Yin Jian, 32
17. USA, Lanee Beashel, 121
23. MEX, Rosa Campos, 199

Mistral Men - 34 boards (10 of 11 races with one discard)
1. BRA, Ricardo Santos, 37
2. ISR, Gal Fridman, 40
3. GRE, Nikolaos Kaklamanakis, 42
14. MEX, David Mier Y Teran, 122
27. USA, Peter Wells, 211

Complete scores:
Updated Olympic photo gallery:

(The Daily Sail has posted an interview with former Star World Champion and
four-time Olympic Medallist, Torben Grael. Here are just a couple of excerpts.)

The Daily Sail: What is the best excuse you've ever made for a poor
performance in a race?
Torben Grael: Nothing like admitting that one just sailed poorly that day.

DS: What's your favourite sailing venue and why?
Grael: Buzios, Brazil. It is windy, warm, perfect waves, the race course is
five minutes sailing from the club, sunny, nice warm water, and a lovely
small city with nice people around.

DS: What's your greatest strength in sailing?
Grael: I find it very hard to talk about myself. I'll pass on this one.

DS: What's your greatest weakness in sailing?
Grael: This one too.

DS: What's the single most important piece of advice you could give to
younger sailors?
Grael: Always have fun while doing it. Be patient if the results don't come
right away.

DS: Who's the best sailor in the world?
Grael: Paul Elvstrom

The Daily Sail website, Full interview:

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Leading up to the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, much attention has been
focused on how Britain and other leading sailing nations have been able to
raise the bar, securing the resources and support needed to prepare their
teams for the games. Talent can only get you so far these days, and the
complexities of an Olympic campaign can leave behind only those who are
prepared to keep pace with this new era of Olympic preparation.

A solution for some might have just arrived. American Philippe Kahn has
made his mark in sailing as much by his quick rise to victory lane as by
his extensive training programs that have led him there. Besides his
personal success in the Transpac race, the Melges 24 and the Farr 40 class,
his training regimen was behind son Shark's win at the 2003 Melges 24
Worlds, Freddy Lf's victory at the 2004 Star Worlds and Morgan Larson
claiming the 2004 505 Worlds. And now, Kahn is directing the focus of his
organization, Pegasus Racing, toward supporting the needs of sailors for
the 2008 Olympic games in Beijing, China.

Explains Kahn, "We want to make a difference and nurture great athletes to
success as part of our team. Some people spend four years preparing for an
America's Cup; we want to focus on one-design and Olympic sailing. This is
a natural next step for us, and completely synergistic with our current
sailing program."

To read about Kahn's plans:

With Act 1 of the 32nd America's Cup beginning in just two weeks, the
enormous logistical task of moving the teams, boats, support staff and
facilities to Marseille has begun. On Monday afternoon, the Dockwise
transportor ship Explorer was loaded with a large cargo of America's Cup
gear, ahead of a scheduled 19:00 departure, for the move to France.

The loading of three ACC boats, SUI 64 (Alinghi), RSA 48 (Team Shosholoza),
FRA 69 (LE DEFI), 16 shipping containers, four ACC masts, and 24 RIBS, made
for a long afternoon of work for the longshoremen and team shore crews. SUI
64 was loaded with the mast stepped, while the other ACC boats were shipped
stripped down to a more conventional shipping state. The Dockwise Explorer
is expected to be at sea for nearly 40 hours for the 345 nautical mile
trip, and should arrive in the Vieux Port at Marseille on Wednesday evening.

Meanwhile, two other ACC boats, belonging to K-Challenge and Emirates Team
New Zealand were towed at high speed from La Spezia, Italy, (where they had
been since arriving in Europe earlier this month from New Zealand), to La
Ciotat, a major port just 20-miles East of Marseille. They will rendezvous
with the rest of the fleet in Marseille's Vieux Port later in the week.

That leaves just BMW Oracle. In order to maximize its sailing and training
time in Valencia, the team has elected to tow its USA 76 from Valencia to
Marseille. BMW Oracle is expected to join the rest of the fleet early next
week in Marseille.

The first races of the Marseille Louis Vuitton Act 1 are scheduled for the
5th of September. But rigging, measurement, training and practice racing
will begin as soon as the boats are ready to sail at the end of the week. A
fleet parade featuring the six competing teams will open the regatta on the
4th of September. The America's Cup fleet then returns to Valencia in the
middle of the month, ahead of Acts 2 and 3 in the Host City of the
America's Cup beginning early in October. -

Tracy Edwards has seldom been out of the sailing news since successfully
completed the 1990 Whitbread Round the World Race - with the first ever
female crew. Their yacht 'Maiden' became the first British yacht since 1973
to win two legs in that prestigious race. Tracy was subsequently voted
'Yachtsman of the Year' and awarded an MBE. Edwards is currently in Qatar
putting the finishing touches to her latest ambitious yachting challenge:
Oryx Quest 2005 is the first in a series of 'Sea Quests' devised by Quest
International Sports Events. It pits the world's largest and fastest
sailing machines against each other in a non-stop round the world race that
is expected to take around 50 days. The Bang the Corner website recently
interviewed Ms. Edwards to find out more about, Tracy - the person. -

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

For 18 of America's best sailors, years of sacrifice, dedication and focus
will be put to the test as they go for the gold in the 2004 Summer Olympics
in Athens. To give our men and women every edge, U.S. Sailing has provided
the team with the very best: from the tip of its high-tech sails to the
very soles of their shoes, Sperry Top-Sider Figawi. With anchor-like
traction and active drainage system, the Figawi will keep Team USA's feet
fixed firmly on the deck and eyes on the prize. Grab your piece of Olympic
gold at

Sunday night, the Orange II maxi-catamaran skippered by the French
yachtsman Bruno Peyron and his crew beat the world record for the longest
distance sailed in 24 hours. At 2030 GMT yesterday evening, Orange II had
achieved an average speed of 29.29 knots since Saturday evening at 0830 and
so had covered 703 miles over the previous 24 hours.

The giant continued at this pace for the whole of the night, only rarely
falling below 30 knots. She may well therefore better the time of this
first record. At 0300 GMT Monday morning, Orange II also crossed the half
way line, after 53 h15 mins sailing since the start back in New York. This
puts her slightly in the lead, in comparison with the Atlantic record time
held by the American Steve Fossett. - Yachting Monthly, full story:

(Kiwi Laser sailor) Hamish Pepper is on the verge of quitting Olympic
yachting because of the costs involved. Pepper, who placed a meritorious
seventh in the Laser class, said even though large amounts of money had
been poured into his campaign, he still felt under-resourced against most
of his leading rivals. "Olympic sailing is extremely tough to compete in
these days because there are other nations spending so much money on their
Olympic sailors and they're doing three-year campaigns," said Pepper. "Even
in Laser sailing now, to do an Olympic campaign in Lasers is probably
getting up around NZ$125,000 a year now, it's just ridiculous money at the
end of the day."

Pepper, 32, had almost certainly sailed his last regatta in a Laser,
regarded as the toughest class to win because of its high status and large
fields. "Realistically, this will be the last time. I'm getting pretty old
for a Laser sailor and if I was going to do another Olympic class I'd be
looking at the Star but it's twice the budget of a Laser."

Pepper will switch his attention to the version of sailing where finances
stay above the water line. "I'm no longer in an America's Cup team so I'll
just try and get back on the professional circuit." As a tactician, Pepper
was a high-profile casualty of Team New Zealand's failed America's Cup
defense last year. He is in talks with a number of challengers for Valencia
in 2007 but experience tells him not to put pen to paper until he is happy.
- NZ Herald, full story:

* Cottage Park YC, Winthrop, MA - Standings of the Marks Star NAs after
three races (44 boats): 1. John A MacCausland/ Brian Fatih, 7pts; 2. Ben
Cesare/ Doug Brophy, 12; 3. Karl Anderson/ Magnus Liljedahl, 13; 4. Hyde
Perce/ Chuck Nevel, 18; 5. Brian Cramer/ Len Delicaet, 23. -

* 'We have worked hard over the last four years to compete and succeed in
the Olympic Games. The race committee should have waited for a better wind
to come. I am not angry because I didn't have a good result today. It's not
a matter of winning or having a bad result. I want to sail a good race.' -
Tornado crew Carlos Espnola, (ARG)

* 'It's terrible to race under these conditions. I prefer to race when it's
windier, as was the case earlier this morning. I hope that we can get some
good breeze when we will race again.' - Tornado crew Herbert Dercksen (NED).

ISAF website:

Can it be August already? Labor Day is fast approaching so take a look at
our current specials to help you get the most out of the rest of the
sailing season. We have savings in every department, including hardware,
electronics, cabin and cockpit, and much more.

(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 Ric Sanders: The Blooper photos in your gallery brought back many
memories. True story: Racing in LA Harbor many years ago There was a
conversation between an owner (no longer with us) and a rock star sail
maker as we are running downwind in about 12 to 15 @ 150 apparent, flat
water etc. Owner - "Do you think we should fly the new blooper?" Sail maker
- "Well, Probably not the wind isn't quite right for it and it might
shift." Owner - "You made me buy it, put the damn thing up" We did. It
didn't help, but it sure looked pretty. God I miss those guys! -

* From Stevan Johnson: Was catching up on my Scuttlebutt reading and
noticed the (now closed) thread on Whompers. Indeed the Whomper has entered
the sailing lexicon and instant downwind boatspeed has become a dream for
us all. So, one day at Whidbey Island Race Week, when we were suffering a
case of the slows, we tried a Whomper of our own. It works quite well, all
the sails are measured in and you never have to jibe. (You've got to see

* From Chris Ericksen: Graham Kelly needs to be careful in giving advice
about flying bloopers ('Butt 1652): he's showing his age (and the age of
others of us who also remember flying them!).

A successful diet is the triumph of mind over platter.