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SCUTTLEBUTT 1697 - October 26, 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.

The class of yacht used to decide the oldest trophy in the history of
sport, the America's Cup, is destined for a massive make-over under the
guidance of Australian Grant Simmer should the Swiss Alinghi team
successfully defend it in 2007. Simmer, who was navigator for Australia
II's historic cup win in 1983 and now works as design coordinator for
Alinghi, says the change is essential because the America's Cup is lagging
behind the latest design technology.

What is being considered bears a distinct similarity to the design being
proposed by former Alinghi helmsman Russell Coutts and associate Paul
Cayard for a new international event that has the potential to rival the
America's Cup as the world's highest-profile yachting event. Coutts, the
most successful skipper in the Cup's 152-year history, has pursued his
yet-to-be-announced new regatta in the wake of his falling out with and
subsequent sacking by Swiss billionaire and Alinghi boss, Ernesto Bertarelli.

I will certainly be pushing for a new class after 2007," Simmer said.
"Unfortunately the America's Cup is no longer at the forefront of yachting
technology; the designs are really lagging behind the modern ocean racing
maxi boats, and it shouldn't be that way. The America's Cup should be
showing the way. "I do believe that it was the right decision to stick with
the current design in the Cup's first match in Europe, but the class has
been around since 1990 and it's time for a change.

"My thoughts on the new design are that the yacht should be a lot lighter
yet a little larger than the existing boats, and while they will remain a
match racing boat they will be a lot faster. The design rule should allow
for development. "It was no secret that Russell actually wanted to go to a
more extreme, canting keel boat for 2007, and maybe that's where we'll end
up. What I do know is that we need more exciting boats for the cup." -
Excerpts from a story by Rob Mundle, The Weekend Australian, full story:

The list of 205 entries gives a strong indication as to how international
the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC), organized by the World Cruising
Club, has remained over the years, with 24 nations represented in the
fleet, not to mention the mixture of nationalities amongst crew members.
Entries from the UK last year were over the halfway mark, however this year
43% of the fleet are from Britain, still the largest country entry. Germany
is the next largest group with 14% of the fleet and there is a strong
presence from the Netherlands, America, Norway, Italy and France.

The average size of yacht in the ARC is now 47ft (14.50m), a slight
increase on previous years, with 32 boats under 40ft (12m) taking part this
year. The smallest yacht in the ARC at 9.09m is Glad, a Comfort 30 from
Norway. At the opposite end of the scale are the two giants in this years
ARC; Peter Harrison's Sojana at 125 feet (38.11 metres) and Leopard of
London at 29.49m, both from the UK. This year's ARC starts on November 21
from Las Palmas de Gran Canaria to Rodney Bay Marina St. Lucia. The 2700 nm
passage will take most of the yachts between 16 and 21 days -

US Sailing recognized several sailing organizations and volunteers at the
organization's annual general meeting in Portland, Ore. last Saturday:

- Robie Pierce (Newport, RI) was presented with the Gay S. Lynn Trophy
for outstanding contributions to disabled sailors and the sport of disabled
sailing which have introduced hundreds of disabled people to the joys of
sailing and sailboat racing.

- John Malatak, a lifelong supporter of boating safety through education
and training, has received the Timothea Larr Award for his lifelong
commitment to boating safety through education and training and outstanding
contributions to the advancement of sailor education and training in the
United States.

- The President's Award will be presented to Chris Bedford (Watertown,
Mass.) for the outstanding meteorological services he donated to the U.S.
Olympic Sailing Team in Athens last summer, as well as to the US Sailing
Team throughout 2004.

- The President's Industry Award will be presented to A.G.A. Correa & Son
(Edgecomb, ME) for creating and donating spectacular trophies for the top
five winners at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Team Trials ­ Sailing. -

The winter racing season is just around the corner and even older Ockam
systems still handily outperform other brand's current systems. Just
imagine the advantage of upgrading your system to Ockam's 2004 specs. Ockam
offers a Trade-Up program that offers big savings; whether revving up your
001 CPU with Unisyn firmware, upgrading your interfaces and sensors,
trading your tired old displays for the amazing multi-function Matryx
display, networking a computer with OckamSoft 4 and a wireless PDA running
Eye software, or stepping up to a full Tryad system. Contact Lat Spinney
( or visit

You will have to excuse John Ross-Duggan if he keeps smiling. It helps to
understand that the forty-nine-year-old skipper has just returned from
Greece after winning the Bronze medal in the sonar class, at the Paralympic
Games in Athens, Greece.

"The keys to winning were preparation, that was certainly an element. We
had a great team dynamic," Ross-Duggan explained when he returned home. "We
had a lot of cohesion. We like each other as a group. There was some
friction obviously because of the event but we were real tight and we
functioned pretty well under the pressure, which I was very proud of. All
but one of these guys hadn't done an event at this level. Brad [Johnson]
actually hadn't done any sailing before. You step up to the plate on
something like this and you've got the biggest butterflies in your stomach
when you hit the starting line in the first race."

The win over the Germans was exhilarating but also a little bittersweet for
Ross-Duggan. "Well, Jens Kroker, the German skipper and I, have a
tremendous amount of mutual respect for each other. We like each other.
He's a wonderful sailor, he was a 470 sailor his whole life and he could go
out right now and do a 470. So, sailing in the disabled arena for him is
less challenging. He's that good a sailor. So to actually tie and then beat
him was a real honor. Those guys sailed well enough we probably should have
split the Bronze medals with them."

Despite life's setbacks and tragedies, the racing doctor still marvels at
what takes place on the water. However, with age, have come wisdom and a
greater appreciation of what it means to be a sailor. "The feeling of
winning is great. I'm actually a guy who enjoys the journey more than the
win. I like the path along the way of the racers and the training,"
Ross-Duggan confided. "I enjoy the growth of my sailing ability. Sailing is
like playing chess on the water. You are always going to get better with
time. You are always going to learn things. That's what I like about it. It
is mentally and physically challenging and you are doing a water sport." So
stand aside for the guy with the grin. John Ross-Duggan the sailor and
racer will tell you, he has a lot to smile about. - Excerpts from a story
by John Gregg posted on the West Marine website:

Dr. Raymond Freymann, Managing Director BMW Group Research and Technology,
and Hans-Joachim Stuck, BMW Brand Ambassador and former Formula 1 driver
visited BMW Oracle Racing last week to discuss the transfer of technology
between BMW and the team's America's Cup effort. The work will focus on
structural design and construction materials used in the yachts.

"There's no doubt the auto industry is a driver of innovation in industry,"
Freymann said. "And each of our engineers needs a challenge. This America's
Cup is an area where our engineers can really go to the limit." The
engineers will perform simulation and optimization of the sailing yacht to
a level not employed in yacht design previously with the goal to produce a
boat that is lighter, stronger and faster. -

On Saturday October 23, the following Officers and Board Members of US
Sailing for 2004-2005 were elected: President - Janet Baxter; Vice
Presidents - Jim Capron, Fred Hagedorn, Tom Hubbell, Bill Munster, Joni
Palmer, and Bill Sandberg; Secretary - Dick Hanneman; Treasurer - Leslie
Keller; At Large Members of the Board - John Amos, Means Davis, Joey
Harris, Betty Sue Sherman and Adam Werblow; Women's Representative -
Charlie Arms; Youth Representative - Jerelyn Biehl; Council of Sailing
Associations Area Reps: Area B - Bob Counihan; Area D - Norton Brooker;
Area F - Karen Smith; Area G - Tom Roberts; Area H - Jan Visser; Area J -
Stan Betts. -

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

The Vendée Globe is tough. It is a grueling 27,000-mile solo race - hence
Musto is the brand of choice for over 50% of the entries including Mike
Golding (Ecover), Nick Moloney (Skandia) and Alex Thompson (Boss). Musto's
HPX foul weather gear will protect the skippers from the elements whist in
the heart of the Southern Ocean, where towering seas, temperatures below
zero, and hurricane force winds are the norm, not forgetting icebergs which
are an ever-present danger. You don't need to race solo around Antarctica
to experience Musto. Give it a try next time:

Vaio moved ahead on Day 21 as previous leaders Samsung (Matt Riddell),
continue to hold further east and offshore as the fleet pass the tip of
Brazil. After the shake-out going between the Canaries, the fleet have held
a pretty settled order, but Samsung has suffered with her pursuers lining
up inside her track. The fleet are locked into broad-reaching downwind
conditions, the leaders level with the island of Fernando de Noronha,
heading for the entrance of the River Plate and a finish in about 10 days.
At the back, the leg has been difficult enough already for the Save the
Children crew, now fully 600 miles off the lead and even 330 miles behind
11th-placed Pindar (Loz Marriott).

Global Challenge Standings: (Leg 1, Portsmouth-Buenos Aires): 1, Vaio (A.
Sorrentino) 2,066m to go yesterday 1358GMT; 2, Samsung (M. Riddell) 2,067;
3, Barclays Adventurer (S. Jackson) 2,082; 4, BP Explorer (D. Melville)
2,118; 5, BG Spirit (A. Forbes) 2,127; 6, Spirit of Sark (D. Gillespie)
2,130; 7, SAIC (E. Lehtinen) 2,162; 8, Stelmar (C. Cosby) 2,199; 9, Imagine
it. Done. (D. Caffari) 2,222; 10, Me to You (J. Allen) 2,308; 11, Pindar
(L. Marriott) 2,346; 12, Save the Children (P. Kelly) 2,673. - Excerpts
from a story by Tim Jeffery, the Daily Telegraph,

Event website:

* Sunday afternoon 142 skippers checked in for the start of today's Baja
Ha-Ha Rally from San Diego to Cabo San Lucas with stops at Turtle Bay and
Bahia Santa Maria. Previously the biggest Ha-Ha fleet was 112 boats, so
it's a significant increase. Commander's Weather calls for light air until
Thursday afternoon, but which time the fleet should be comfortably at
anchor in Turtle Bay. During the event itself, photos should be posted on
'lectronic Latitude via

* The Transpac 52 class has posted on their website the winning entry in
its class logo contest. Who won the prize for this design? The winner has
asked to remain anonymous:

* Tip of the day: Don't waste your joy soap trying to "cut" spilled diesel
on the deck when you refill the tank. Instead, pour a coke soda on the
spill, and wipe it off. This will easily cut the diesel oil and make clean
up easy! - J. M. Marta

International Lightning Class past President Clarence O. "Bud" Jones passed
away last week with the same quiet dignity that he led his life. A
brilliant engineer, having served as the Chief Engineer of the Niagara
Machine Tool company, he used his professional skills in an important role
during the critical time in the Lightning Class when the class changed from
a wooden mast with jumpers to the now standard aluminum oval section,
helping to preserve the integrity of the class that so many people around
the world have enjoyed for decades. Bud also served as Commodore of the
Niagara Sailing Club and as a Director of the Buffalo Canoe Club. Bud is
survived by his wife Audrey and sons Chris and Craig, their wives Colleen
and Karen and five grandchildren. Friends from out of town may wish to sign
the guest book at:

Bill Biewenga, veteran ocean racer and weather router is available to coach
you, your crew, speak at your club, or provide professional delivery of
your yacht. Bill brings over 320,000 ocean miles and 17 years of routing
experience to each project. For information, email or visit

(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 Bobbi Tosse: The answer to Rob Anderson's question of when does the
taxpayer take the write-off (Scuttlebutt 1696) is year of donation. If, by
some horrible happenstance, the charity sells the item before the 24 months
is up, then the taxpayer is obligated to amend his/her return. (On the
assumption that the organization sold the item for less than what was
deducted by the taxpayer.) The key is to donate to an organization that you
know will wait for at least 24 months to sell. There is no obligation on
the part of the organization to report to the IRS if the item sold has been
in their possession at least 24 months before selling.

Basically, the "new" rules that go into effect Jan. 1, 2005 for donating
autos, boats, planes, etc. are the same rules of yore for donations over
$5000 - it's just that now they apply to donations over $500. So, there
really isn't anything new. All of our donated boats are worth gobs more
than $5,000 anyway - right? It's really all those donors of 20 year old
automobiles 'worth' over $3,500 that are going to have grief. And, if
you're contemplating donating your boat, and its value is less than $5000,
donating in 2004 would be easier than waiting until after Jan. 1, 2005. Of
course, you should consult with your own tax advisor on this subject.

* From Rand Milton (regarding Chris Boome comments about tax laws on
donations): Having handled a lot of boat donations for different charities,
there are some points to consider for boat donations:

1. Always use a recognized top-notch appraiser. Responsibility of a valid
appraisal rests with both the donor and the appraiser, and not the charity.

2. The reality of receiving an appraisal much higher that its true market
value is very real. Especially when two appraisals are done - one for the
boat itself, and two, for the basement full of old sails that you may think
are worthless, but actually have a lot of value in a donation. Always keep
a record of all the capital improvements that you have made on a boat as
these can help justify a higher appraisal.

3. To prevent a potential problem, it is wise to have the charity keep the
donation for at least two years. After two years, the charity may sell the
asset for any price and should not cause a problem for the donor even if
the price is lower than the appraised value. The charity will also not be
required to file Form 8282 with the IRS which is required if the asset is
sold within two years.

The bottom line is that donating vessels is a great way to support worthy
organizations. That said, be sure to ask lots of questions about the
charitable organizations plans for your donation. Also, be sure to check
with a reputable tax consultant fluent in such transactions before you proceed.

* From Franck Pellerin (regarding John Sweeney's on-the-water lecture to a
young competitor on the virtues of rule 2 - Scuttlebutt 1696). I
respectfully suggest that Mr. Sweeney attempted to teach the wrong lesson.
The fact is that the RRS do not contain a single rule which allows a
competitor to assign a penalty to another. There is a rule however which
allows you to simply 'Protest'. This single word would have put the
responsibility squarely on the shoulders of the young man to decide,
pronto, whether to do a 720 or meet later. No need for a lecture. Very time
effective. Very quick lesson.

Ironically, the young man was also in a position to teach Mr. Sweeney a
lesson. He could have entertained the lecture ad infinitum and, should the
elder finally protest correctly, allege that he was not informed in the
prescribed fashion at the first reasonable opportunity. Fifteen years ago,
I wrote a "Protest Etiquette" for our Club and it begins: "Do not, under
any circumstance, order or direct someone to 'Do a 720 !!!' and wait for
him to do so. You could wait until the cows come home ..."

* From Mark Lammens (re John Sweeney's sportsmanship comments - edited to
our 250-word limit): It is important not to confuse ignorance of the rules
with sportsmanship. I also sense that sometimes youth training does not
reflect 'sailing by the rules', (Coaches take note). Perhaps it could have
been handled a little differently as well. Having the discussion with him
as the incident as developing (it was a light air day) and discuss his
obligations before the 2 boat length circle, in a factual, non-emotional
manner (You have no overlap at the 2 boat length circle for my bow..... you
have to go behind me). As for losing his valuable position, well he passed
5 boats doing something that was illegal, and remind him of that on the
dock. Also, make sure you also have a reputation as fair sailor and
appropriate mentor and always do your penalty circles when you foul someone
and do them without being told' Protest' if you know you are wrong.

I believe that this is an opportunity to create a positive learning moment,
and it could be done in a manner that does not threaten their sporting
existence. My experience with kids is they want to succeed, but sometimes
need to be shown how this works. Having said all of that, sometimes the
best way to really make an impression is going into the protest room.
Juries are also trying to make the protest experience a positive learning

PS shouldn't he have done 2 circles instead of 1 ?

* From Brooks Magruder, Singapore: Regarding F1/ Acup & Ford/ Jaguar
pulling out of F1, note that Ford through Volvo is also migrating from
elite golfing sponsorship to sailing. In Singapore, Volvo is often a
marquee sponsor of regattas and their sponsorship of Volvo Ocean Race/
Open70 shows that branding with sailing, Ford chooses sailing over F1 and
over golf for its focused "life-style" marketing dollars.

Diet ice cream