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SCUTTLEBUTT 1729 - December 10, 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.

Cruising World magazine has announced the best for '05 in boatbuilding with
its 11th annual Boat of the Year Awards. This year, for the first time,
Cruising World chose two overall winners - one domestic and one import. The
title of Best Domestic Cruising Boat went to the Sabre 386; the Best Import
Cruising Boat was judged to be the Moorings 4000, built by Robertson &
Caine in Cape Town, South Africa. In addition to overall Boat of the Year,
both the Sabre 386 and the Moorings 4000 received top honors in their size
categories - the Sabre 386 as Best Midsize Performance Cruiser and the
Moorings 4000 as Best Multihull 40 Feet and Under.

The Sabre 386 received high marks across the board from the judges, who
noted everything from top-notch performance on the water, excellent design
characteristics, great engine access, and superb accommodations below deck.
In designing the Moorings 4000, Morelli & Melvin took a good boat (the
Moorings 3800) and made it better. Improvements across the board included
increased performance, simplified sailhandling and more room below;
together these characteristics added up to a lighter boat that is bigger
and sails better than its predecessor.

In all, 24 boats were inspected and sailed by independent judges Steve
Callahan, a best-selling author and yacht designer; Bill Lee, formerly of
Santa Cruz Yachts; Ralph Naranjo, who oversees the sailing program at the
U.S. Naval Academy; Tom Prior, who was chosen from among Cruising World's
readership; and Alvah Simon, a longtime voyager who won Cruising World's
1997 Outstanding Seamanship Award. Judges toured the boats at the U.S.
Sailboat Show in Annapolis, Maryland, and sailed them on the Chesapeake Bay
over four days.

Other winners included:
- Best Production Cruiser Under 40 Feet: Hunter 38
- Best Production Cruiser 40 to 45 Feet: Catalina Morgan 440
- Best Production Cruiser 45 to 50 Feet: Dehler 47
- Best Midsize Performance Cruiser: Sabre 386
- Best Multihull 40 Feet and Under: Moorings 4000
- Best Multihull Over 40 Feet: Maine Cat 41
- Best Charter Boat: Lagoon 440
- Best Value: Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 40.3

Additional information at:

Branded in the new Team New Zealand colors, the first German-built
America's Cup yacht felt the water ripple under her hull for the first time
yesterday in Auckland's Viaduct Harbor. Built by the illbruck syndicate for
last year's Cup, a lack of finance meant the yacht was never completed, and
as a result the lime-colored hull lay in a boatyard in Germany for two
years before it was acquired by Team New Zealand. The yacht's owner,
Michael Illbruck, head of his family's international company, illbruck
GmbH, which makes automotive and building products, has loaned the yacht to
Emirates-sponsored Team New Zealand for as long as they require.

Designed by Michael Richelsen, now with Alinghi, and Friedrich Judel and
Torsten Conradi from Judel/Vrolijk, the yacht is similar in shape to
Alinghi and Oracle, which makes it an ideal testing boat for the New
Zealand syndicate. The main difference between the illbruck boat, which
will now be known as NZL68, and the black boats used in the last cup NZL81
and NZL82, is the width. NZL68 is considerably narrower. "It puts us in
that design space and I think it helps energise a team because they have a
new boat, new gear, new equipment," Team New Zealand managing director
Grant Dalton said. "You can't measure that as such, but it is one of the
things that is important culturally." - Julie Ash, NZ Herald, full story:

Tony Bullimore is back in business, re-launching the much-traveled Daedalus
next week in Avonmouth and ready to start the month-long delivery trip to
Doha, Qatar, where he is one of three firm entries in Tracy Edwards's Qyrx
Quest round-the-world race starting on Feb 5. Bullimore's 102ft catamaran
has had as many modifications as names. It started life 20 years ago as the
80ft TAG Heuer but is best known as ENZA, when it set the Jules Verne
Record in 1994. Daedalus will be up against Oliver de Kersauson, whose
120ft trimaran, Geronimo, is both the newest and current round-the-world
record holder, hence odds-on favorite for the million-dollar winner's
purse, and Edwards's former Maiden II, now called Qatar 2006 and skippered
by Brian Thompson. - Tim Jeffery, The Daily Telegraph,

ORCA, the southern California multihull racing class governing body, has
approved the Outleader kite from Kiteship as class legal for all events.
Bill Gibbs (ORCA member and owner of Afterburner, the 2004 Newport-Ensenada
race winner) made a brief presentation to the ORCA Board of Directors last
night, reviewing the issues, as well as the known facts and experiences of
people sailing the Outleader kite this year. Included were comments from
noted multihull designer Ian Farrier. Following a detailed discussion, the
ORCA Board voted unanimously to approve use of the Outleader kite as class
legal. "It'll be a sad day when multihull sailors adopt a closed minded
attitude and vote to stifle innovation" said Mike Leneman, long time ORCA
board member. In approving the Outleader kite as legal, ORCA added several
new rules covering kites:

1. They must measure and qualify under existing spinnaker rules, making
them a spinnaker flown away from the boat.

2. A sail flown away from the boat (a kite) will not be counted as part of
the boat. For example; it will not count for finishing or right-of way.

3. It is the responsibility of the kite flyer to keep the kite clear of
other boats.

Furthermore, ORCA decided to initially rate the Outleader kite simply as a
spinnaker, without penalty. ORCA chief handicapper Vic Stern commented that
"we can and will adjust the rating based on actual race course performance.
We are a 'performance' handicap system." ORCA president John Papa summed it
up; "The ORCA mission is to promote safe, recreational racing of
multihulls. The Outleader kite may increase multihull safety. Now we'll see
how it does on the race course."

Give the gift of a new or used Snipe this holiday season. Fast used boats
are available in the USA starting from $750-1500 at The international Snipe family, 750 strong
in the USA, is waiting to welcome your family to the fleet.

Each hourly data shows Ellen MacArthur's 75-foot trimaran B&Q losing a few
minutes on the lead - last night over 15 hours ahead, Thursday morning 13
hours and Thursday afternoon 12 hours. "You know when you do this kind of
trip, its swings and roundabouts - we'll have good times and bad times and
there is obviously a very bad time ahead of us so we're likely to lose all
we've gained on Francis," She said. "This is the very nature of record
attempts and statistics prove it is very rare to get ahead and stay ahead
for the duration on long passages, never mind around the world." B&Q having
covered nearly 4500 miles is heading south, trying to navigate her way
through the high pressure with only 12 knots of breeze. -

Mike Golding's Ecover has moved up into fourth place but is set to get a
pasting from a depression heading south-east from Madagascar with winds of
45 to 50 knots. Conrad Humphreys (Hellomoto) got back into the race at
around midnight while Alex Thomson (Hugo Boss) is safely in port in Cape
Town having retired from the race along with Hervé Laurent (UUDS) and
Norbert Sedlacek (Brother).

Leaders at 1900 GMT December 9:
1. PRB, Vincent Riou, 14,640 miles to finish
2. Bonduelle, Jean Le Ca, 51 miles to leader
3. Sill Véolia, Roland Jourdain, 338 mtl
4. Ecover, Mike Golding, 504 mtl
5. VMI, Sébastien Josse, 510 mtl

Complete standings:

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

The leading pair, BG Spirit and Spirit of Sark (just five miles back), have
benefited from their position further north and west and edged ahead of
their nearest rivals to the south and east. The wind has shifted, currently
approximately 20 knots from the northwest - relatively calm compared to the
winds up to 47 knots reported late yesterday afternoon. There is a
high-pressure system to the north of the area at present, dominating the
South Pacific. But, in immediate terms, the low-pressure system centered
just southwest of the fleet will track towards the southeast and once past
the teams, light and variable airs will follow. However, this will only
last until the next low travels across from the west, when the winds will
rise and the multiple sail changes will begin again in earnest!

BP Explorer currently has no heating onboard which is hampering the mood
and feelings being faced due to the extreme conditions. John Bass described
the agony of sail changes: "Sail changes on the foredeck can be likened to
trying to sew your initials into a parachute while clinging to a cliff face
upside down under a freezing waterfall". -

In 'Butt 1713 on November 17 we carried a story reporting that Sailing
World magazine had selected the J/100 as their 'Boat of the Year.' Last
week the curmudgeon had a chance to sail the J/100. Although we don't
normally review new boats on these pages, a couple of knee-jerk reactions
seem worth sharing.

No one is going to buy this 33-foot boat for its cruising accommodations.
While 'adequate' for an occasional overnighter, the interior is functional
but hardly lavish. The huge and very comfortable cockpit is the boat's real
selling point. The day sailing group will salivate over that comfort ...
and over the boat's simplicity. It does not take more than two or three
minutes to hoist the main, untie the dock lines, unroll the jib and be
sailing. While the J/100 has a standard 10 HP diesel auxiliary with a
folding prop, this is a boat you can easily sail into and out of a slip.

The boat is incredibly simple, clean and to my mind, intelligently rigged.
I liked the traveler arrangement and the standard mainsheet set up with
separate cleats for course and fine tuning. The simple hydraulic backstay
will make most people happy and everyone will love the nifty carbon mast.
Will racers like the boat? I think so. It's pretty easy to see this boat as
a four-person 'gentleman's Etchells.' There are no lifelines, and the class
rules permit only 'legs in' seating. Very civilized.

At 6500 pounds, the boat is hardly an ultralight. There was only five knots
of breeze the day I sailed the boat, and while the J/100 did not feel
'frisky,' it was never sluggish. And unlike some of the other J Boats I've
sailed, the boat even has a little bit of weather helm. Nice! We understand
that the current class rules permit only working sails for racing - no
kites, either symmetrical or asymmetrical. To my mind, that's a mistake.
However, it's still early in the game and hopefully that decision will be
reconsidered. Those who have sailed the boat with an A-Sail tacked to the
bow in front of the headstay raved about the ease of handling and the
impressive performance. -

In Scuttlebutt 1724 we posted information received from Mark Eustis that
outlined conditions under which whaling is permitted off Cape Cod. We have
now been told that information was totally bogus and completely fabricated
by Mr. Eustis.

* US Sailing Safety at Sea Seminars will be presented during at both
Strictly Sail Philadelphia (January 20) and Strictly Sail Chicago (February
4). The Seminar is a certified program for offshore sailors, and is
required for many offshore races, some of which require attendance by a
percentage of the crew from every boat. U.S. Naval Academy Vanderstar Chair
and Cruising World magazine Technical Editor, Ralph Naranjo will moderate
both seminars, teaching participants safe seamanship, heavy-weather tactics
and boat preparation - plus first-aid and seasickness prevention, SOLAS and
other visual distress signals, safety-equipment demos and crew-overboard
recovery techniques. -

* Mike Golding will be awarded 3rd place in the skipper of the year, Fico
Lacoste Championship today, at a dinner to be held at the Fouquet's
restaurant on the Champs-Elysées in Paris. Joining him on the podium will
be trimaran skippers, Franck Cammas (winner) and Michel Desjoyeaux (second
place). As Golding is currently competing in the Vendee Globe the prize
will be collected on his behalf by his wife, Andrea Golding and the Open 60
project manager Graham Tourell (Gringo).

* Diana Smith has been appointed Sales Manager for the Offshore Sailing
School at the Fort Myers Sales Office. Smith will be responsible for all
aspects of sales nationwide, including courses and programs, special events
and boat shows. Smith was most recently Senior Sales Account Manager and
Market Intelligence Officer for Delphi Corporation, the world's largest
automotive supplier in Detroit, MI. Her career includes experience in
retail sales, event planning, marketing and promotion for events. An avid
sailor, Smith was on the Founding Board of Directors of the National
Women's Sailing Association, serving as President from 2000 through 2004.

The Ockam U text explains in clear, easy to follow language often
misunderstood concepts such as Polars/Targets, VMC course calculations for
long distance racing, and modifying target speeds in oscillating breeze
(aka "Wally"), plus much more. Whether you sail with a sophisticated fully
integrated instrument system, or rely solely on a compass and the
seat-of-your-pants, Ockam U provides helpful information helping you get
around the course faster. It makes a great gift and is a bargain at $25
plus shipping. To order, contact Lat Spinney (

(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 Bill Sloger: Perhaps the Chicago YC should consider stating the
sailing conditions when the mid-fleet boats are in midcourse to Mackinac.
This would be based on the immediate past conditions and the forecasted
future conditions. With the present availability of computers each racer
should be able to calculate their fleet positions while on the race course.
I am supposing that this is why the race conditions are announced prior to
the races start. I think that an Excel or some other program could crunch
the numbers.

* From Tim Dickson: On kid sailing... I have 8,5 & 3 year old boys, and
while I have enjoyed campaigning a Tripp 26 on the Chesapeake Bay; soccer,
t-ball, karate, and other activities are likely to crowd out stick time to
keep me competitive. Luckily, someone introduced me to the Penguin Class,
and now all three boys can get out with me on the water. We have a great
time, but tend to get a little behind at the marks, because I'm opening
juice bags and gummi bears instead of calling tactics.

The Penguin has been a great introduction because instead of standing at
the dock looking at my boys in an opti, I'm with them on the water. We
don't do very well, but the boys all love it. And when it's time to go in,
we go in. And for two years in a row, we've been the top boat in
fundraising for the Leukemia Cup in our area, and the boys all lent a hand
with lemonade stands and going door to door. One day I was with my five
year old in the penguin heading in, and an older gentleman came up on his
Hobie and said to me: "keep track of these times, it goes fast... now I'm
just sailing with myself."... kinda makes selling the Tripp a little easier.

* From Bill Elmer: Mr. Glynn actually does sound a lot like a little league
dad. His child is 6 1/2 for heavens sake. While his concerns may be valid
to him, I doubt from my own experience that they make a hill of beans to
his offspring. My daughter now 12 has been sailing with us on our racer/
cruiser since birth, and is now involved in trimming on NFS races. Until
about age 8 or so, she had more fun climbing around below so as never to
touch the cabin sole rather than spend much time topsides. Around a year
ago she joined the club's race team in Opti's. She has improved immensely,
but her most obvious joy comes from spending time on and off the water with
the other kids on the race team and meeting and hanging out with other kids
at regattas. Picking her up after a cold, rainy, day long practice at this
time of the year and seeing her happy makes it all worthwhile.

While I get the usual sail mags such as Sailing World, Sail, and the local
stuff, any attempt to get her to read the tactic articles or say this
month's Sailing World article on successful juniors is usually met with
little interest. She does however skim the mags and will yank out the
radical photos, like the Navtec ad of the tri on one ama. To paraphrase a
comment made to Bill Clinton, "It's the parents st----it." No magazine will
make it happen.

* From Giff Hammar: In response to John Glynn's commentary in 'Butt 1723.
We started taking our daughter, now 15, out on our boat since she was a few
weeks old. She went through a period when she wasn't thrilled to be sailing
or racing with us. Much of that changed when we traded a Newport 41 for a
J/105. There were fewer lines, the boat was faster and she played a bigger
role in actually racing the boat. We have since moved to a semi-custom 50
footer and she has been even more involved. One of the things that we have
found is that kids blossom when they have a place to call their own and
have a sense of being an important part of the crew. Having friends along
helps, too.

When she was 10, she cleared a fouled spinnaker halyard at the top of the
mast in the middle of a race. The next year, she and her cousin, both 11 at
the time, raced to Bermuda with us. Both were part of the standard watch
rotation. After an evening race a couple of years ago, she and a friend
watched satellites zoom through the night sky as we brought the boat back.

Our job as parents is to provide a safe and engaging environment for kids
to participate. It's also fun for them to share with that with others.
Overall, our experience has been very positive, but not without some lumps.

* From Kelly Mathews: Consider this - it doesn't really matter whether Sean
Langman and his gutsy crew sail with or without his kite sail to Hobart.
After all, there have been photographs and articles in Australian national
newspapers and the internet is buzzing with photographs and discussion -
that investment of $25,600 has been worthwhile for both the sponsors' and
skipper profile alike!

Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; Wisdom is not putting it in a
fruit salad.