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SCUTTLEBUTT 1656 - August 27, 2004

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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.

OLYMPIC SAILING
Brazil's Torben Grael and Marcelo Ferreira clinched the Star class gold
medal Thursday with one race left, while Americans John Lovell and Charlie
Ogletree closed in on at least a silver in the Tornado class. Lovell and
Ogletree finished well in two races aboard their catamaran, putting them
within three points of defending Olympic champions Austria going into
Saturday's final race. The silver and bronze medals in the Star class also
will be decided Saturday. American skipper Paul Cayard, in his first
Olympics at 45, and crew Phil Trinter, are ranked fourth overall with 56
points, nine points shy of the silver.

Grael, 44, has won five medals in six Olympics, dating to his silver in the
Soling class in 1984. Grael also won the Star gold in 1996, and has two
bronzes. Grael and Ferreira sailed a consistent regatta against a fleet
loaded with some of the world's best sailors. In 10 races, they were out of
the top seven only once, finishing 11th in the first of Thursday's two
races for the 17-boat fleet. In the second race, they finished fourth to
win the gold. Grael was the tactician for Prada Challenge in the 2003
America's Cup, helping the Italian-based crew eliminate Cayard's AmericaOne
in the challenger finals. Luna Rossa was then swept in five races by Team
New Zealand.

On the 49er course, Iker Martinez and Xavier Fernandez of Spain lived up to
their billing as favorites by winning the gold medal. They finished seventh
in the deciding 16th race to win the gold by five points over Rodion Luka
and George Leonchuk of Ukraine, who took silver. Martinez and Fernandez won
the world championships earlier this year. Chris Draper and Simon Hiscocks
got the bronze, the fifth medal for Britain at this regatta. Hiscocks won
the silver medal at Sydney in 2000 with skipper Ian Barker. Americans Tim
Wadlow of Boston and Pete Spaulding of Miami, knocked out of medal
contention on Tuesday, finished fifth in their first Olympics. Bernie
Wilson, AP as posted on the SF Chronicle website, http://tinyurl.com/4jlzq

49er - 19 boats (Final results - 16 races with two discards)
1. ESP, Iker Martinez/Xavier Fernaandez, 91
2. UKR, Rodion Luka/George Leonchuk, 97
3. GBR, Chris Draper/Simon Hiscocks, 101
5. USA, Tim Wadlow/Pete Spaulding, 125

Star - 17 boats (10 of 11 races with one discard)
1. BRA, Torben Grael/Marcelo Ferreira, 20
2. FRA, Xavier Rohart/Pascal Rambeau, 47
3. CAN, Ross MacDonald/Mike Wolfs, 49.2
4. USA, Paul Cayard/Phil Trinter, 42
8. BER, Peter Bromby/Lee White, 71

Tornado - 17 boats (10 of 11 races with one discard)
1. AUT, Roman Hagara/Hans Peter Steinacher, 33
2. USA, John Lovell/Charlie Ogletree, 36
3. ARG, Santiago Lange/Carlos Espinola, 45
8. PUR, Enrique Figueroa/Jorge Hernandez, 67

Complete scores: http://www.sailing.org/olympics2004
Updated Olympic photo gallery:
http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/photos/04/olympics

QUOTE / UNQUOTE
* "Saturday it's one big race for gold. We have a much better drop race
than the Austrians, so we have two choices. We jump on them early and drive
them to the back of the fleet or just go out and win. We'll make that
decision on game day." - John Lovell, USA Tornado skipper

* "The Americans are very strong in these weather conditions. They always
make a great start in every race. -Hans Peter Steinacher, AUT Tornado crew

* "Torben has just been in a zone, just like we were when we sailed our
Trials." - Phil Trinter, USA Star crew

* "I feel we have a medal in us. Whether or not it's too late, that's
another question." - Paul Cayard, USA Star skipper

* "It has been a long journey and pretty awesome. The last three years
we've pushed hard and put everything on the table. The British and the
Spanish have been dominating and we have been closing the gap on them
recently, but we didn't do it in this regatta. They've done the Olympics
before, and they put together better races. I have a lot of respect for
them." Tim Wadlow, USA 49er skipper

STRATEGY
Yachting journalist Rich Roberts spoke with triple Olympic Medallist Mark
Reynolds about the strategy John Lovell and Charlie Ogletree might use in
the final race for the Tornado class on Saturday. Roberts noted that
Austria leads by three points but is currently throwing out a 14. The US's
throwout is a 9 and it has at least a silver medal clinched. So look for
Lovell/ Ogletree to do to the Austrians what Paul Foerster and Kevin
Burnham did to the Brits in the 470s. If both finish back in the pack the
US wins gold by two points. Here are Reynolds' thoughts:

"Tornados, I don't know how that works. I don't know much about the other
guys, but Johnny [Lovell] has done some match racing. They're in the
driver's seat, but it might be pretty hard to control somebody [in a
catamaran]. I'm sure he'll give it his best. There's no downside, It's a
nice position to be in. I'm hoping those guys come through. We need another
gold medal for Team USA."

Curmudgeon's Comments: Lovell/ Ogletree won the 2003 International
Catamaran Challenge Trophy - a match racing series sailed in Formula 18HT
catamarans. Hmmmm!

FARR 36 ONE DESIGN
Fresh out-of-the-box, Rick Orchard's Farr 36 One Design, "Grins," won races
at the New York Yacht Club's Race Week. It delighted the owner and the new
builder, James Betts Enterprises of Verdi NV, for whom this was also a
first. Orchard chose the Farr 36 One Design because of its proven sailing
performance and because its class rules demand that it shall be amateur
owner driven with a limited number of Category 3 "professionals" aboard.
'This has been our successful formula with other classes,' said Geoff Stagg
of Farr International. Contact Farr International, +1-410-268-1001 or
http://www.farr36.org

C-CLASS CAT FIGHT
While the International Catamaran Challenge Trophy F18HT event is taking
place again this year in October, so Steve Clark is holding what is being
officially termed the 'International C-Class Catamaran Championship' on
Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island from 16-26 September out of Bristol Yacht
Club. Four boats are expected to take part.

Yesterday thedailysail witnessed the unveiling for the first time of the
British C-Class cat Invictus Challenge down at the giant Airbus facility in
Filton on the outskirts of Bristol (England). Unfortunately the project has
been running late due to a combination of financial and build issues and
the team have not been able to launch the boat and put her through her
paces in the UK. Nonetheless the boat is complete and today she is being
loaded into a container and shipped to the States, where the team have a
week to trial her before racing commences.

Obviously the main eye-catcher is the solid wing sail rig. To give some
idea why these rigs are special: While a standard mast-softsail combination
develops a lift co-efficient of around 1, C-Class rigs have been known to
develop lift co-efficients of up to 2.1, thus considerably more horsepower
per sqm of sail. For those unfamiliar with solid wingsail rigs the object
of the exercise is effectively to stand an aircraft wing on its side, but
with the key difference being that the wing must work on both tacks (a
standard aircraft wing is effectively a one tack wonder). - Two short
excerpts from a major story on The Daily Sail website, full story and
photo: http://tinyurl.com/4v9mm

GETTING READY FOR THE SHOW
Team Alinghi's SUI-64, the boat that won the last America's Cup, has
arrived in Marseille, France, ahead of Act 1 of the 32nd America's Cup.
SUI-64, along with Le Defi's FRA-69, and Team Shosholoza's RSA-48, pulled
into port late on Wednesday night on the Dockwise transport ship, Explorer,
a special delivery from Valencia, Spain. On Thursday morning, the delicate
job of unloading this precious cargo began. Strong winds building
throughout the morning made it impossible to continue however, and SUI-64
remains on board the Explorer. It will be lifted with a crane, and unloaded
onto the J 4 on Friday morning, if weather conditions allow.

These three America's Cup Class boats will be joined by three others,
making for a fleet of six that will contest the Marseille Louis Vuitton
Act. The K-Challenge, which has acquired FRA-57 from Team New Zealand, and
Emirates Team New Zealand's NZL-82 are currently in La Ciotat, a French
port up the coast from Marseille, where they arrived from New Zealand
earlier this month. They will make their way to the J4 later this week.
Finally, BMW Oracle will be towing USA-76 from its training base in
Valencia, Spain, to complete the fleet.

The Dockwise Explorer cargo also includes over 20 RIB's for Umpires, Race
Officials and photographers, along with containers and spare masts for each
team. Unloading the rest of this material will take place as soon as
weather conditions permit.

The Marseille Louis Vuitton Act is the opening Act of the 32nd America's
Cup. It begins with a fleet parade on the 4th of September, ahead of the
first scheduled race day, the 5th September. The regatta opens with three
days of fleet racing, ahead of a round robin series of match races. Both
disciplines are scored equally, so the winner will be the most consistent
performer across all of the races. At the conclusion of the Marseille Louis
Vuitton Act, the Dockwise Explorer will carry all six boats back to
Valencia, in advance of Acts 2 and 3, to be held in the Host City of the
32nd America's Cup.

FLEET RACING - AMERICA'S CUP STYLE
(In just a few weeks in Marseille the America's Cup syndicates will
participate in an official Cup fleet racing event, in Marseille. Michelle
Slade interviewed Alinghi helmsman Peter Holmberg how the Alinghi syndicate
is preparing for the different challenge fleet racing ACC boats presents.
Here are some excerpts from that interview.)

Question: How is Team Alinghi preparing for the fleet racing competition in
Acts 1, 2, 3?
Peter holmberg: We will prepare for the fleet racing in all the same ways
we prepare for match racing - by practicing time and distance for being on
the line at speed at the starts, straight line speed, height mode, footing
mode, and maneuvers s. The one aspect that will not come into play will be
the pre-start maneuvering and fighting for control that we practice for
match racing.

Question: how do you expect the tactics employed in fleet racing will play
out among the crew in the fleet racing?
Peter Holmberg: The tactics I expect to see by the teams for the fleet
racing will be mostly focused on positioning, speed, and sailing shifts.
Once teams get a feel for their relative speed compared to the other boats,
their tactics will likely change to either minimize losses, or capitalize
on their advantages.

Question: What are your overall expectations for the fleet racing aspect of
the upcoming Acts?
Peter Holmberg: Adding fleet racing to the Acts is a good thing. Although
we love match racing, we also enjoy fleet racing and it will be a great
spectacle to see all the IACC boats on the line at the same time.

Complete interview: http://tinyurl.com/3wr3n

THE BRITS
Although the racing is yet to finish in the Tornado and Star classes at
Athens 2004 the total medal haul for Great Britain's Sailing Team is five.
Shirley Robertson, Sarah Ayton & Sarah Webb's gold in the Yngling, Ben
Ainslie's gold in the Finn, Nick Rogers & Joe Glanfield's silver in the
men's 470, Chris Draper & Simon Hiscocks' bronze in the 49er and Nick
Dempsey's bronze in the men's windsurfing. This matches the haul from
Sydney 2000 in quantity but not colour but is still a fantastic achievement
in some very difficult conditions. - Yachts and Yachting.com,
www.yachtsandyachting.com/default2.asp

NEWS BRIEFS
* 470 Olympic Gold Medalist Kevin Burnham will make a live appearance,
along with other medalists, on NBC's Today Show, tomorrow, Friday, Aug. 27.
The airing is scheduled to air between 8:30 - 9:00 AM EDT. Gary Jobson's
final Olympic telecast in scheduled for Saturday, August 28 - 4:00 pm on
CNBC. There is no show on Friday. www.nbcolympics.com/index.html

* Twelve yacht clubs from Barnegat Bay and other New Jersey waters competed
in a new interclub event, the BBYRA Yacht Club Team Challenge, that pitted
teams of adult sailors (21 and over) against each other in short-course,
college-style racing. Home team Toms River took the low-point honors, as
E-Scow and Flying Scot sailors Will Demand and Bill Warner took first and
third, respectively, in the singlehanded and doublehanded Tech divisions
and former Lightning North American Champion Allen Terhune placed third in
420s. Surf City YC finished second in the event. Complete scores can be
found at: www.tryc.com

* One of the most elusive titles in the world of sailing is "two-time Farr
40 World Champion." In the past six years of world championships no one
skipper has won the title twice. That could change next month when the
Rolex Farr 40 World Championship returns to San Francisco, Calif. from
September 8-11. With eight countries represented on the current 31-boat
roster and a dramatic backdrop of the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz
Island in picturesque San Francisco Bay, competition is guaranteed to be
fierce and intense in pursuit of the champion's title. - www.farr40.org /
www.stfyc.org

*Team McCullough/ Punter topped a fleet of 36 Teams to claim the title of
2004 29er North American Champions. With no scores worse than 8th in a 17
race series Team McCullough/ Punter were by far the most consistent. Team
Walbie/ Bougie-Bastien & The Bougie-Bastien Sisters were 2nd and 3rd
respectively. Complete results: www.29ernorthamerican.org/default2.asp

WHAT MATTERS FROM YOUR INSTRUMENT SYSTEM
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sensor design. The information is what matters. Get real, get Ockam.
Contact tom@ockam.com or cmf@ockameurope.com

OLYMPIC PERSPECTIVE - Morgan Reeser
Just returned back from Athens, this time as part of the Greek Olympic
Team. I was lucky enough to coach two accomplished athletes at the Games -
Sofia Bekatorou and Emilia Tsoufla - who easily won the Gold Medal in the
Womens 470 event. As satisfying as that was, watching my old teammate Kevin
Burnham win a Gold Medal, with Paul Foerster, was equally satisfying. I
feel as though I came back with two Gold Medals, so wonderful is the
Olympic experience. Walking into the opening ceremonies as part of the the
home team in Athens only served to remind me that the Olympic Games is
truly heaven on earth for athletes (and coaches).

I want to remind any young athlete (even Kevin Burnham is 47 years young)
that all the years of sacrifice to get to Games is worth every minute once
you step into the opening ceremonies stadium. Winning a medal is only a
part of the experience. The opportunity to compete against the world's best
athletes, knowing that you have given your best effort to represent
yourself and your country is still victory in the Olympic Games.

Cheers for Paul and Kevin, and to the rest of the sailors on the US Team
for their effort and pride in representing the USA in Athens. Citius,
Altius, Fortius.


LETTERS TO THE CURMUDGEON
(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 Jonathan R Harley, US Sailing Olympic Director: Just a quick about
the 'haveahobieday' web address on some of the ISAF Olympic results pages.
ISAF had so many "hits" every day the results were not able to be viewed
due to the traffic. ISAF (Paul Pascoe) looked for other web sites to post
results to and came up with the Australian Yachting Federation web page for
Asia and Oceania as well as the Hobie page for Europe. I offered the US
Sailing web page but we did not have compatable software. I've copied Paul
who might be able to provide additional technical details.

* From Kevin Samuels: I saw Bill Christopher's letter yesterday remarking
how some of the class results on the ISAF Olympic sailing website were
actually being hosted by a Hobie Cat website. I had also noticed this
connection, but don't look for it anymore. Apparently ISAF must have been
reading Scuttlebutt Thursday morning, and quickly got their webmasters to
change the links. Is there a cover-up in the works?

* From Peter Huston: If Philippe Kahn wants to help his son Shark become a
better sailor by surrounding him with world class talent, and other US
sailors get the benefit of this training program, where is the harm?

The decline in the ability by the US to win Olympic medals began decades
ago when the shift in Olympic boats went away from those classes in which
we had strength via some combination of Olympic class fleets spread around
the country, to our superior technology, and a lack of talent in other
countries. We then began to manage for medals on a quadrennial basis, with
decent results because we had generations of great sailors who could adapt
to many new Olympic classes. Now, we have a paucity of participation in
many of the Olympic classes, and whatever strength we've been able to show
in the current games is generally because of our older sailors. Suddenly
for the '08 Games we have a stunning lack of depth in almost all classes
with the exception of Star and perhaps the Laser and 49'er. If Kevin
"Backflip" Burnham sails in '08 he will literally be eligible for
membership in AARP, and while I still wouldn't bet against him, relying on
a generation of sailors who grew up in the '70's is not a valid long term
medal strategy.

Philippe offers an interesting and unique alternative to our current medal
draught. Let's applaud and support his efforts.

THE CURMUDGEON'S OBSERVATION
Some people manage by the book, even though they don't know who wrote the
book or even which book it is.