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SCUTTLEBUTT 2509 – January 11, 2008

Scuttlebutt is a digest of major sailing news, commentary, opinions, features
and dock talk . . . with a North American focus. Scuttlebutt is published
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Seattle, WA -- Over the holidays last month, Bill Buchan Jr. was welcomed
into Corinthian Yacht Club’s Honorary Life Membership. Buchan a legend in the
Star class, having won both the class World Championship and Olympic Gold
medal, along with building over 60 boats, told one of his famous stories from
the 1985 Worlds in Nassau, Bahamas. Buchan and crew Steve Erickson won the
80-boat regatta, but en in the fourth race a shroud let go on the last
windward leg and the mast went over the side. Says Bill:

“Our first thought, of course, was, ‘There goes the series.’ In any other
race it wouldn’t have been so bad; we were in pretty good shape and could
still throw out one race. But another (race) was coming up, back to back,
with only one leg left of this race. Very fortunately for us, Basil Kelly’s
wife happened to be right there in a fast powerboat. She came alongside and
asked what she could do to help. A very quick conference determined that
there was not time to tow the boat all the way in and back out again.
Instead, Steve jumped aboard the powerboat and they roared off to the Creek
for our spare mast, which was all rigged and ready for such an emergency.

“They must have made it to shore in about 10 minutes and made the return
trip, against the wind, in maybe 20 minutes, because in just over half an
hour they were back with the new mast.“ Meanwhile I had un-rigged the broken
spar and cleared away the mess. In 18 knots of breeze, we switched masts and
stepped the new one. I was a bit concerned that something might be loose or
missing aloft, but everything went together like clockwork. We had the sails
up and were sailing around 20 minutes before the start of the next race.” --

China's market for pleasure boats is still in the infancy stage. Just 400
private boats are registered nationwide, and almost all of them are
motorboats. But Adrien Magnan of Marine Dragon Consulting in Shanghai, which
specializes in the Chinese yachting industry, says the amount spent on luxury
boats has been leaping upwards by tens-of-millions of dollars in the past few

"If you look at the increase, it's about 100 percent every year," he
explains. So 2005 was about $30 million. 2006 was about $50 million. Now we
are exceeding $100 million in imports of yachts. And so, if next year it will
be $200 or $400 million, in a few years it will catch up with countries like
Italy or France in Europe. I wouldn't be surprised to see China in the top
five markets in less than five years."

There are about half-a-million US-dollar millionaires in China today. Sales
of luxury items there are skyrocketing, and yachts are becoming the ultimate
accessory of the ultra-rich. Mike Simpson, owner of Hong Kong-based yacht
dealer Simpson Marine, started selling boats in China three years ago. He
says his wealthy Chinese customers are seeking a Western lifestyle. "As soon
as they have money, they are all reading these lifestyle magazines. It's
almost like step-by-step," he says. "It's the fast cars, it's the Bentley or
whatever it is, and then the very smart house, which will probably be French
Renaissance--and they get European architects to design it for them--then, of
course, the European fashion and, now, it comes to the yacht. The yacht is
part of that whole thing." -- China Confidential, read on:

Portland, OR -- About three years ago, George Saidah awoke at 3 a.m. with the
idea for his retirement: offer free sailing trips as a form of therapy for
developmentally disabled kids and their families across the globe. The
Lebanese-born Frenchman and lifelong sailor had made millions as a software
entrepreneur. But he disliked the greed and cutthroat mind-set all around him
in the business world. He was ready to move on, to share his time, money and
love for sailing with families less fortunate than his own. Inspired by a
cousin with schizophrenia and a friend in France who set up a similar
program, Saidah retired at age 45, created a nonprofit organization called
Heart of Sailing and launched into the most fulfilling venture of his
life. -- The Oregonian, read on:

B&G launched their sophisticated new wireless, handheld On-Deck Tactical
Navigation PC at the Southampton Boat Show 2007. RaceVision3000 builds on
previous versions of RaceVision, which has proven to be a vital tactical
tool, and is the only all-in-one ‘off-the-shelf’ solution for navigators. B&G
systems have been at the leading edge of advanced marine electronics for over
50 years, and was onboard every Volvo Ocean Race boat and America's Cup team
in their recent events. B&G is the Official Marine Electronics supplier for
2008 Acura Key West – look for the team in Key West for all your support
needs. --

Open 60 doublehanded round the world race (started Nov 11; 25,000-miles)

(Day 61 – January 10, 2008) The honour of being first around Cape Horn goes
to Paprec-Virbac 2, who left the fabled cape on their port side at 06:20 GMT
this morning, moving from the tough Southern Ocean into the South Atlantic.
Skippers Jean-Pierre Dick and Damian Foxall can celebrate this latest
milestone, while remaining aware that some 6700 miles remain before the
finish line in Barcelona. “It was very bumpy and uncomfortable all night
along the coast of Chile. There was a lot of wind and a huge sea. The waves
were so big that we had the impression of dropping into a big hole every time
we went over the peak of a wave,” exclaimed Jean-Pierre this morning. “We are
going to celebrate this with a taste of some French Champagne for me and some
Irish Whiskey for Damian. We have closed the door on the southern ocean.”--

Positions at 17:30 GMT (+gain/-loss from leader since previous day)
1-Paprec-Virbac 2, Jean-Pierre Dick/ Damian Foxall, 6,750 nm DTF (+315)
2-Hugo Boss, Alex Thomson/ Andrew Cape, 955 nm DTL (+73)
3-Temenos II, Dominique Wavre/ Michéle Paret, 2,915 (-53)
4-Mutua Madrilena, Javier Sanso Windmann/ Pachi Rivero, 3,066 (-43)
5-Educación sin Fronteras, Servane Escoffier/ Albert Bargues, 3,587 (-36)
Retired - PRB, Vincent Riou / Sébastien Josse (broken mast)
Retired -Delta Dore, Jérémie Beyou/ Sidney Gavignet (broken mast)
Retired - Estrella Damm, Guillermo Altadill/ Jonathan McKee, (rudder damage)
Retired - Veolia Environnement, Roland Jourdain/Jean-Luc Nélias (broken mast)

* (Day 48 – January 10, 2008 - 19:54 UTC) Francis Joyon and his maxi-trimaran
IDEC crossed the equator today, and now estimates to be nearly 12 and half
ahead of the 2005 record set by Ellen MacArthur (71d 14h 18m 33s). In the
past 24 hours, he clocked an average speed of 19.2 knots while covering 459.9
nm. With only 3,093 nm remaining to the finish at Brest, France, his advance
over the record has grown to 2,850 nm. --

The America’s Cup has fallen on hard times. Not only the sport of, but also
the trophy itself. Irrespective of the ongoing legal drama, the “auld mug”
was not among the 44 other pieces of “heavy metal” featured in the pages of
ESPN's “the magazine” December 31st issue. There was, of course, Lord Stanley
’s Cup, the Indy 500’s Borg Warner Trophy, the Heisman, and showing that
infamy holds no bounds, even the trophy for winning the HGH ravaged Tour de

But the trophy representing the world’s oldest continuing sporting event was
nary to be found. This after what was the most exciting America’s Cup finals
ever, bar none. The Swiss yacht Alinghi won the final race by one second over
Emirates Team New Zealand.
In a stunning series of races that featured several twists, turns and a near
catastrophic collision on the final windward beat of the last race, The 2007
America’s Cup ranks as one of the greatest yachting events of all time.

Regardless of all the subsequent court proceedings over the recent months,
how could “America’s” trophy not find itself in the company of all these
other pieces of hallowed metal? Some of the hardware featured has earned its
regality, but others are nothing more than sponsorship dollars badged on
metal thrust upon us like sort of famed artifact of sporting antiquity. The
Nextel, I mean “Sprint” Cup, the Bassmaster Trophy, the MLS Cup, are you
serious? -- Twelve Meter Update, read on:

* North Sails and the O'pen BIC Class Association announced today that North
Sails has been selected to build the sails for the O'pen BIC. The O'pen BIC,
which received official class recognition by the International Sailing
Federation (ISAF) in November 2007, is a 2.75 meter long (9-foot) one-design
dinghy that is gaining momentum around the world with large fleets in the
United States, Italy, France and South America. The first North sails should
be delivered with the boat from late Spring 2008 onwards. -- Complete report:

* West Marine, Inc. has reported net sales for the thirteen weeks ended
December 29, 2007 of $117.8 million, a decrease of $6.0 million, or 4.9%,
from net sales of $123.8 million a year ago, primarily due to a $4.2 million
decrease in sales attributable to closed stores and a $2.9 million decrease
in comparable store sales. Comparable store sales for the fourth quarter
decreased 3.0%. – Full report:

* The crew of the El Lago, TX based 42-foot sailboat that was transporting
10,000 pounds of vacuum-packed coffee from Belize, but had to abandon their
boat in the Gulf of Mexicom on New Year’s Day due to rough weather, will
leave on Friday with a 60-foot steel trawler to locate and retrieve their
coffee-filled boat. --

* With 37 boats already committed, entries close January 31st for Balboa
Yacht Club's biennial race to Cabo San Lucas. Smaller boats will start the
800-nautical mile race to the tip of Baja California, Mexico on Friday, March
28, with the larger ones starting a day later. Details at

* The chase for the 50 knot mark has a new kid on the block in the shape of
the WotRocket. At 9 metres long, 6.5 metres wide, and weighing 450kg, it is
composed of a central hull fitted with foils, and at the end of its armature
a cockpit like that of a glider. Another Australian project, like Macquarie
Innovation, WotRocket will likewise have a rigid sail. The WotRocket will
hold its first speed test trials during February 2008 in Botany Bay,
Australia. --

* Correction: Information in Issue 2507 regarding the 2007 ISAF Youth Worlds
incorrectly stated that the event lacked a multihull class. In fact, the
Hobie Cat 16 (with spinnaker) was among the seven classes used in the event.
Scuttlebutt regrets this error. -- Results:

Dave Perry, David Dellenbaugh, and Brad Dellenbaugh are teaching Rules and
Tactics Seminars this winter. Perhaps you could learn a thing or two... From
fundamental principles to nuances highlighting the difference between
right-of-way and control, these rules gurus teach the rules and the tactics
rules dictate. The case-based curriculum teaches situations, not rule
numbers. Enrollment is limited. Sign up now (risk free) and receive Perry’s
Rules Quiz book and Dellenbaugh’s Rules DVD with the course. Learn more at
NorthU. Call 800-347-2457 or

Some of the random photos from the sport received this week at Scuttlebutt
include icy images from Newport, RI, the US Olympic team all cleaned up,
Laser sailing along city streets, Star sailing in Miami, the Anteros 36 and
Elan 450 in Slovenia, and the first build of the Morris 52.. If you have
images you would like to share, send them to the Scuttlebutt editor. Here are
this week’s photos:

Letters selected for publication must include the writer's name, and may be
edited for clarity or simplicity (letters shall be no longer than 250 words).
You only get one letter per subject, so give it your best shot, don't whine
if others disagree, and save your bashing and personal attacks for elsewhere.
As an alternative, a more open environment for discussion is available on the
Scuttlebutt Forum.

-- Scuttlebutt Letters:
-- Scuttlebutt Forum:

* From Luissa Smith, Director, Head of Training and Development Department,
ISAF: (regarding story in Issue 2508 on Youth and Olympic events) The events
on the programme for the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championship are determined
by ISAF. The multihull first appeared on the Championship programme in 1998,
when it was optional to have a multihull event. Since 2004 the multihull
event has been a mandatory event on the Championship programme, and therefore
it was included at the Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship 2007.

The planning for the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championship is made several
years in advance, and it would be inappropriate to remove the multihull from
the 2008 Championship programme with eight months notice, as an automatic
knock on effect of the change to the events on the Olympic programme decided
by ISAF in November 2007.

The ISAF Youth Sailing World Championship is the world’s pinnacle
multi-nation youth sailing event and the events on the Championship programme
are carefully considered and selected to offer an appropriate pathway for
young sailors’ future sailing careers. The Championship offers a pathway to
the Olympic Sailing Competition and other sailing opportunities. Any changes
to the events on the programme of the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championship
will be made based on any submissions (proposals) to ISAF and after a
democratic debate and decision making process. I hope this clarifies the

* From Alistair Murray, Ronstan: Congratulations to Bill Goggins of Harken
for taking up the reins as President of Sail America. He will be great in
this role and following in the footsteps of such industry luminaries as Olaf
Harken, Randy Repass (West Marine), John Peterson (Hunter) and Bill Bolin
(Island Packet). These selfless people do a tremendous service to sailing and
the sailing industry. It is deeply appreciated by the rest of us.

* From Peter Morris: I think your correspondent Neil Gladwell (letter in
Issue 2508) is confusing publishing “tide tables” with publishing “harmonic
variables” used in tidal software. This same issue extends into weather data
which is withheld by the UK government Met Office from free distribution in
the hope of a small profit, leaving UK yachtsman getting their weather data
from the US government.

* From Anna Teeters: It has been said before, but the Schnack comments from
Issue 2508 are further evidence that the line is painfully blurred between
ACM and Alinghi. Why the heck are the comments of an ACM employee on the
defender’s website? Sadly too, these comments were more worthy of the kind of
chat one might hear at last call on a busy Saturday night, and not the kind
to be published. (ie, “I talked a little bit to Rolf [Vrolijk] about it,
because the Dutch are renowned for designing barges and particularly barges
with leeboards which can sail quite well. Even though he is excellent and
inventive, it was obvious that he had no experience in barge design and
neither does Dirk [Kramers] and so they are at a little bit of a handicap.”)
Looks like Schnack has joined the other team members in their free fall.

* From Mats Olofsson: (re, the national ensign issue) As a professional yacht
captain I've always taken pride in adhering to proper flag etiquette. For
most of my career on sailing yachts and now on large motor yachts the flag
has always gone up at 0800 and down at sunset local times. Courtesy flags
always go on the starboard side and higher than the vessels national ensign,
except perhaps if the ensign is hoisted on the same mast as f.ex. on most
commercial vessels, or at the top of the mainsail gaff as is rarely seen
these days. I always take down and set the courtesy flag at the same time as
the national ensign, but I've noted that most other yachts don't and leave it
up. I find this a little strange - after all it's called a courtesy flag for
a reason!

Seeing your picture, I assumed it was a bareboat, not US registered. It's
very common practice among professionally crewed yachts (and bare-boats) to
put the crew's national ensign on the port side, sort of a calling card I
guess as there are not too many crew members hailing from Cayman Islands, BVI
or Bermuda... Personally I find it a good practice which makes for good
social interaction among crews. On port side goes signal flags, such as the
"Q" flag. To be technically correct you should probably have hoisted all your
club ensigns and US Flag on the port side. If the Tahiti bare-boat was not
french registered it should then have had a french courtesy flag on sb side.

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: For those that want to comment further, you may do
so on Scuttleblog, as the newsletter now deems this thread dead. --

Air driers in public washrooms will shut off just as they get warm enough to
do any good.

Special thanks to B&G Instruments and North U.

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