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SCUTTLEBUTT 1696 - October 25, 2004

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talk . . . with a North American focus. Corrections, contributions, press
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welcome, but save your bashing, whining and personal attacks for elsewhere.

Members of US Sailing's Board of Directors voted on Sunday, October 24, to
move on with plans to restructure the organization, setting the stage for
new Bylaws to be approved by the current Board of Directors in upcoming
months. The new structure would eliminate the current system and culture of
constituent-based governance and dramatically reduce the size of the Board
of Directors. The proposed structure would empower the organization's
membership and the Councils to discuss concerns and to elect the majority
of the board. Each member of US Sailing would have a vote with two votes
for each family membership. Annual voting would be done on-line.

A Structure Task Force has been developing the restructure proposal since
the Task Force was created in the fall of 2003. The Task Force consists of
Tom Hubbell, a Vice President, and a small group including two Past
Presidents and another Vice President. In March, 2005 a Special General
Meeting will convene to enact the proposed re-organization, and at the
close of the spring meeting March 2005, the Transition Plan would begin.

To read more about the proposal:

Bermuda is spearheading a campaign to have women's keelboat sailing changed
from fleet to match racing in the Olympics. The primary reason for such a
move, explained president of Bermuda Sailing Association (BSA) Tim Patton,
is that it would significantly reduce participant expenses thereby opening
up competitive sailing to women in many more countries. "Match racing
requires much less by way of equipment for the competitors. Basically they
would need a pair of sailing gloves and a bottle of sun block and they
could go from event to event and sail in whatever class of boat there is at
that location. In fleet racing you have got to show up with a boat but not
in match racing. So that's one thing which makes match racing particularly
attractive to the smaller sailing nations that are less well-to-do but have
(sailing) talent. If you can get your talented people on the circuit
without having to provide and transport boats for them, then it makes the
sport more attractive to a much broader spectrum," he noted.

Women's keelboat racing at the Olympics, he disclosed, was originally
supposed to take place in a match-racing format with equipment supplied.
However, wrangling within the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) - the
sport's world governing body - resulted in a fleet-racing proposal being
put forward to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) with competitors
having to finance their own boats. Patton said Bermuda's submission, which
will be considered at ISAF's annual general meeting next month in
Copenhagen, Denmark, already has strong backing. Gayle Alleyne, The Royal

According to Alfonso Grau, the Valencia Town Councilor in charge of the
Economy, Major Events and Tourism, stated that the economic effects of the
first regattas in the Americas Cup had increased the Valencian economy by
2.2 million Euros. Mr Grau also stated that hotel occupancy during the
regattas, which took place between October 4 and 16, amounted to 73% - a 4%
increase over the same period last year. The Councilor added that he
expected even more people to come to Valencia for the next series of
regattas that are due to take place in June 2005. For his part, Jose
Salinas, who was in charge of the Valencia 2007 Consortium, and is now the
head of the Valencia Convention Bureau, stated the average amount spent by
visitors during the regattas was 204 Euros a day, and this has led to the
conclusion that tourists and visitors spent some 19 million Euros during
the events. -

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Hamilton, Bermuda - New Zealander Russell Coutts, the three-time America's
Cup champion, has won the King Edward VII Gold Cup for the seventh time
with a 2-1 defeat of Australian James Spithill. Coutts is the only sailor
in history to win the regatta seven times. In the Petite Finals, Ed Baird
defeated Scott Dickson, 2-1.

Racing was canceled Sunday due to what the Bermuda Weather Service
described as an extra-tropical weather system to the north of Bermuda. It
produced westerly winds gusting up to 50 knots and a 3- to 5-foot sea on
sheltered Hamilton Harbor. Consequently, the standings after Saturdays'
racing became the final results.

Coutts and Team Colorcraft crewmembers Jes Gram-Hansen, Christian Kamp and
Rasmus Kostner, were awarded the championship of the Investors Guaranty
Presentation of the King Edward VII Gold Cup and the $30,000. This event
was the third stage of the 2004-'05 Swedish Match Tour. With the victory,
Coutts gained 25 points toward the Tour championship and now heads the
leaderboard with the high score of 45 points. The champion will win a
$60,000 bonus and a BMW 545i Touring from Tour partner BMW. American Ed
Baird, in second on the Tour, trails by 5 points and reigning Tour champion
Peter Gilmour of Australia is third with 30 points.

King Edward VII Gold Cup Final Results:
1. Russell Coutts (NZL) Team Colorcraft, $30,000
2. James Spithill (AUS) Luna Rossa Challenge, $18,000
3. Ed Baird (USA) Team XL Capital, $11,500
4. Scott Dickson (NZL) Dickson Racing Team, $9,000
5. Peter Gilmour (AUS) Pizza-La Sailing Team, $7,500
6. Staffan Lindberg (FIN), $6,500
7. Mathieu Richard (FRA), $6,000
8. Klaartje Zuiderbaan (NED), $5,500 /

New Orleans, LA - In an exciting final day of competition, the USA's 2004
Olympic Silver Medal team of John Lovell and Charlie Ogletree have
successfully defended their claim to the International Catamaran Challenge
Trophy (ICCT) by defeating Enrique Figueroa and Jorge Hernandez of Puerto
Rico 4-2 in the "first-to-four point" series sailed in F18HTs on Lake
Pontchartrain and hosted by Southern Yacht Club. According to ICCT Trustee
John Dawson of Sea Cliff Yacht Club (Long Island, N.Y.), it will again be
up to Southern Yacht Club to organize the next Challenge and Defense of the
event. We hope to see this event held again on an annual basis," said
Dawson, "and provide more eligible competitors the opportunity to sail for
this prestigious trophy." The announcement of the dates, venue, and
catamaran class to be used in the next event will be made in January 2005.
- Media Pro Int'l,

During the evening of Friday 22nd October a brand new Laser Radial was
stolen from the car park of the Wayzata Yacht club in Wayzata , Minnesota
during the ISCA Single Handed National Championships. The boat was one of a
fleet of 32 laser and laser radials supplied by Vanguard sailboats as
sponsors of the event. If it were not for the generosity of a club member,
a competitor would have been out of a chance at this prestigious event.

The Laser was a red 2005 (almost burgundy) Radial which was taken with all
the equipment but not the dolly, suggesting it was taken by water. It also
appears that the thieves knew what they wanted as they took the boat from
the middle of the pack and it had been used by Paige Railly the previous
weekend to win her fleet at the High School Single Handed Championships.
The plaque/ sail number is 181180 and the serial number stamped on the
starboard side of the transom is OQTI1180I405. Vanguard Sailboats would be
grateful for information leading to the recovery of this boat. Anyone
having information should contact VP sales, Michael Zavell at (401) 683 0960.

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* The Indian Harbor and Riverside Yacht Clubs (in Greenwich and Riverside,
Conn., respectively) received US Sailing's St. Petersburg Yacht Club Trophy
for excellence in race management. The two Clubs were honored for their
outstanding organization and execution of the 2003 MasterCard International
Etchells Class World Championship held September 17-23, 2003. A total of 93
boats from nine different countries competed in this Championship. Both
yacht clubs received particularly high marks for reaction to wind changes,
mark setting accuracy and setting of marks, response to change and safety
considerations. -

* Justin Hood sailing for Spring Lake YC and Lake Michigan, successfully
defended the Richardson Trophy in the 65th running of the Great Lakes match
racing championship series hosted by the Racine Yacht Club in 8 - 16 knots
of wind in S2 7.9 Meter boats. Six teams, each chosen by sail-off qualifier
to represent Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, the Detroit Regional
Yachting Association, Lake Erie and Lake Ontario respectively competed.
Kevin Doyle, Lake Ontario finished second by winning a tie-breaker with
Chris van Tol, Lake St. Claire. -

* The daily logs of the Global Challenge racers have been packed full with
all the antics from the crews, crossing their first monumental milestone -
the equator. First over the equator was Samsung, who have dominated the
race for the past week, closely followed by VAIO which is just 13 miles to
the leaders, Barclays Adventurer a further 14 miles back. In fourth place
is BP Explorer, another 26 miles behind and who, for the third consecutive
poll in a row, have recorded the most miles over 24 hours - 233. -

* Regatta marketing partnerships are becoming more common, and watchmaker
Rolex is as active as any company. During Rolex events, a large round decal
with their name is typically applied to the bow of each entrant to provide
additional exposure. But an Australian boat, when faced with applying the
decal over their beloved hull graphics, were forced to nudge the Rolex
sticker back a tad. Enjoy their solution:

* Mirabella V - Joe Vittoria's 245ft superyacht - has arrived back to her
builder, VT Shipbuilding in Portsmouth, following a comfortable voyage from
the Mediterranean, for repairs to her lift keel mechanism. The 75 metre
(245 foot) composite sloop went aground near Cap Ferrat following her 600
kg anchor dragging in a freshening breeze. Contrary to the various comments
which appeared in the media, the hull and rig are undamaged. The
sacrificial tip on one rudder needs to be replaced and the lift keel
mechanism needs to be repaired. - Yachting World, full story:

* Andrew Campbell of Georgetown has won the 2004-05 ICSA/ Vanguard Men's
Collegiate Singlehanded North American Championships, an event he also won
two years ago. The event was sailed in new Lasers provided by Vanguard, and
hosted by the Wayzata YC and the U. of Minnesota. Campbell managed to cross
the finish line in the top three in 15 of 16 races. In the Women's
division, Old Dominion's Anna Tunnicliffe won 11 of 16 races in the Laser
Radial fleet to earn an unprecedented third consecutive North American
Championship, becoming the first woman to accomplish that feat. -

* Hamilton, Bermuda - Final results after nine races in the Renaissance
Reinsurance Junior Gold Cup, Frankie Lardies (NZ) took first with 29
points, Jas Farneti (ITL) was one point back with 30 points and Teemu
Rantanen (FIN) came third with 39 points. Oliver Riilhilouma (BER) followed
in fourth with 53 points. Racing was cancelled Sunday because of gale force
winds and 3 foot waves in Hamilton Harbor. -

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(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 John Sweeney (regarding sportsmanship - Scuttlebutt 1694): During a
recent Laser regatta my considerably younger competitor fouled me while
making a move for an overlap as we approached a leeward mark. When I
insisted that he exonerate himself he suggested rather that I waive his
right to room. I explained to him (it was a light air day) that it would be
unfair to the four boats outside of me to allow him to fall in behind my
boat, that he should accept his fault and take his penalty. Unfortunately
this concept was so foreign to him he discredited it as mere wrangling of
an old man in a young man's game. I persisted. Only when faced with the
prospect of losing in the protest room did he begrudgingly do his circle.

Later ashore the young man's close friends and father supported his view
and bemoaned his losing valuable position in the overall standings for
"such a minor infraction". I came away saddened by the notion that the
younger crowd couldn't make the distinction and the father - a veteran
sailor himself - wouldn't help them to understand the relevance of Rule #2.
I don't know that my experience is the exception or the norm but I do know
that it is my obligation to continue to impress upon younger sailors the
meaning of sportsmanship, just as I learned it from my father and his pals.
I trust that my peers would agree.

* From Britton Chance (re sportsmanship in Issue 1694): Honor means a lot
in Scandinavia. They call it Rent hår and Paul (Elvstrom) was elected as
one of the very few honorary members of the Royal Swedish Yacht Club.

* From Marc Fountain: We need leadership from the designers of the Racing
Rules of Sailing to ease JJ Isler's pain. Please let's reinvigorate the
sport by changing the rules to include a burden of proof for every
situation that occurs 'when boats meet'. Make the odds in the protest room
uneven so that skippers take defensive action when on the weak side of a
rule rather than pushing the situation because it's generally perceived as
a 50/50 proposition. Currently no disadvantage exists for poor
sportsmanship as articulated in JJ's comments because the rules are poorly
written. Could be that the German boat tacked too close, could be that they
executed a perfect slam dunk. Who knows?

The rules offer nothing to help the competitor on the course because it's
50/50 in the protest room and everyone knows it. The German sailors' action
(turning circles) had nothing to do with their perception of the crossing
situation but with the odds of increasing or decreasing their finishing
position based on a 50/50 outcome of a protest on leg one of the race.
Logically, if the exact same situation occurred on the final leg, the
Germans would have skipped their circles and instead sailed for the finish
and taken the 50/50 odds simply because it was the last leg. I don't know
what more we can do to drain the Corinthian spirit out of the sport. The
rules need revision and JJ's doubt about this simple two boat
port-starboard situation without a mark involved supports the point.

* From R. Geoffrey Newbury (re George Backhus' concern in Issue 1695 on the
Race Committee being held responsible for loss when running a race in
dangerous conditions): It's already happened. A long time ago. IIRC
American YC or Larchmont were defendants in an action in the early 1980's.
It was reported at the time in the US Sailing Newsletter in an article
concerning the need for organizing authorities to obtain signed

* From Rob Anderson: Chris Boome's note about boat donations is very
interesting given the many questions that it raises. I imagine that the
legislation was aimed at the giant auto donation business. Boats can be a
bit more complicated. If an organization uses a donation to teach sailing,
then sells it after a couple of years ... how will a fair depreciated
"right-off" value be established? Also, if an organization fails for one
reason or another to sell a vessel for some period of time, does the tax
payer have to wait until that tax year to take the right off?

Having been involved in boat donations for many years, I witnessed many
abuses. Under the old rules, when vessels are valued over $5000, the
accepting organization has a responsibility to notify the IRS of the sale
price should they "sell" the donation within 24 months. The IRS then looks
at what the donor wrote off and what the vessel was sold for. It always
amazed me when I would see charitable organizations advertising recently
donated vessels available for "Lease/ Purchase" at a designated price;
usually much less then the "appraised value". Our tax professionals
indicated to me that this placed donors at great risk should they be audited.

* From Robert Constable: (Response to Mark Michaelsen - 'Butt 1693): Two
comments: First, while he's right that the AC isn't a mano-a-mano event
like one-design; it's not at all about a "nation's total resources"
anymore. It's about a few billionaires' access to capital, and their
willingness to spend it for nothing more than bragging rights. Second, the
oft-repeated comparisons to F-1 racing are off the mark. The dollars spent
on F-1 deliver 18 spectator-oriented, television-friendly events annually,
and the circuit is managed to provide the greatest benefit to sponsors and

The AC delivers one event, neither spectator- nor TV-friendly, every 3, 4
or 5 years, depending on the whim of the immediate past winner, and any
consideration of sponsors and fans is at the convenience of the players. Do
I wish it were any different? Not really. If it were predictable,
democratic and financially accessible, it would be just another high-level
event, like so many other grand-prix regattas, championships, and race
weeks. The political jockeying, the design secrecy, the rare air in which
the principles fly, and the extreme measures they take to wrest or keep
control of the cup are what make it so entertaining.

Rather than call someone drunk, it's a bit nicer to say he or she is
chemically inconvenienced.