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SCUTTLEBUTT 2514 – January 18, 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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Dean Brenner took on the chairmanship of the US Olympic Sailing Committee for
the 2008 quadrennial, and his term was recently renewed for the 2012
Olympics. The USOSC is responsible for the selection of the Olympic and
Paralympic Sailing Teams, the Pan American Games and World University Games
Teams, and the annually designated US Sailing Teams. Here are a few excepts
from a recent interview conducted with Brenner:

* On the early selection of the team:
BRENNER: “China is a different place, with specific conditions and a major
culture change, and we wanted to make sure our winners had the time to get
fully focused on being their best in China. And regardless of where the
Olympics will be held, there is value in making the selection far enough in
advance that the winner has time to come down off the high of winning the
Trials and get re-centered on the true goal—success at the Games.
Additionally, choosing our team in the Fall of 2007 allows us to focus a much
larger percentage of our 2008 budget on our Trials winners. We can focus
resources where they should be focused.”

* On the members of the 2008 Olympic Team:
BRENNER: “The new generation has really come on line all at the same time.
Other than John Lovell and Charlie Ogletree (Tornado) who are on their fourth
Olympics, and Tim Wadlow and Chris Rast (49er), every other member of the
Olympic and Paralympic Teams are first-timers. This reality is both an
opportunity and a situation that needs to be watched. I love this team’s
enthusiasm and energy, but we also need to make sure they are ready to
compete in their first Games. We bring the team together as often as we can,
and they see each other at many of the Grade 1 events. And we have a number
of initiatives in place to educate all of them on what their first Olympics
will be like. They’ll be ready.”

* On the selection process:
BRENNER: “Every four years, the US Olympic Sailing Committee has a real
in-depth conversation about what kind of selection trials make sense. The
tried and true in the US is the domestic, one-regatta, winner-takes-all
event. It is a process that has a lot of support here. But every possible
solution has its positives and negatives. As Olympic sailing gets more
refined and more professional, there are going to be fewer people who choose
to make the considerable time commitment. The fleets get smaller. So we have
to take a long and hard look at whether the US approach still makes sense.
And we are looking at it.”
Complete interview:

* Melbourne, Australia – Olympic racing in the 470, Finn, Laser, Laser
Radial, and Tornado continues through Saturday at the Sail Melbourne regatta,
where Erin Maxwell and Isabelle Kinsolving (USA) continue to lead the North
American contingent by remaining on top in the Women’s 470 class. Also in the
hunt is Bernard Luttmer (CAN), now sixth in Laser; Tania Elias Calles (MEX),
now third in Laser Radial; and Zach Railey (USA), now fifth in Finn.
Canadians remain strong in the Laser class with three in the top ten, while
the American 470 women are holding two of the top five places.
-- Update:
-- Complete results:

* Takapuna, New Zealand – Racing in the Gold and Silver flights commenced on
Thursday at the RS:X Men’s and Women’s Worlds, and will continue through
Saturday. Barbara Kendall (NZL) continues to lead the women’s gold flight,
with Nikola Girke (CAN) as the only North American in the Gold flight at
38th. In the men’s event, Tom Ashley (NZL) continues to lead the Gold flight
as well, followed by Zac Plavsic (CAN) in 34th, David Mier y Teran (MEX) in
39th, and David Hayes (CAN) in 53rd as top the North Americans.

The Worlds is the final event for those countries that have not yet qualified
for the RS:X event at the 2008 Olympic Games. While the contending North
American countries have qualified on the men’s side, the same can’t be said
for the women. There are 28 available slots for the women’s class at the
Games, of which the final seven places will be decided this week, with twelve
nations fighting for qualification. None of those twelve nations made it
through to the women’s gold fleet, so the battle will be fought in the silver
fleet, and the current standings have Thailand (3rd), Mexico (10th), Hungary
(14th), Argentina (20th), Russia (21st), Cyprus (22nd), and USA (23rd) among
the top seven, with Armenia (25th), Turkey (30th), Estonia (28th), Uruguay
(35th) and Croatia (36th) on the outside looking in. --

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Following an evaluation of the boats that consistently finished at the top of
their fleet over the 2007 season on the Puget Sound and surrounding waters of
the Pacific Northwest, 48° North Sailing Magazine - in collaboration with
Harken - have named the Top 25 Sailboats for 2007. For an amazing fifth
consecutive year, top honors went to Brian Watkins and his crew, sailing
"Declaration of Independence," an Express 37 out of the Seattle Yacht Club.
Nearly 500 boats were tracked over the year to comprise the results.
Completing the top five are:

2. Here and Now (J/29), Patrick Denney, Corinthian YC, Seattle
3. Mystique (J/30), David Maclean, Corinthian YC, Seattle
4. Shrek (1D35), John Hoag, Corinthian YC, Seattle
5. Time Warp (Beneteau First 375), Duane Allman, South Sound Sailing Society
Complete list:

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

(Day 68 – January 17, 2008) The South Atlantic isn’t giving anything away to
the two boats leading the Barcelona World Race fleet as they race towards the
finishing line off Barcelona. Overnight, race leading Paprec-Virbac 2 nearly
held its own and then this morning, it was able to grab back some miles from
the chasing boat, Hugo Boss. But the tide has turned again and this afternoon
Hugo Boss was the faster boat in pursuit. “We had a busy day yesterday, with
pretty strong winds, averaging 30 knots, but gusting up to 50,” Hugo Boss
co-skipper Andrew Cape said. “It’s going to be a bit slower going for us for
the next 48 hours. Over five to six days, we hope we can cut their lead a bit
more, but we’re in vastly different situations. Paprec-Virbac 2, I think, is
ahead of the front that just passed us. If she manages to stay in front of
that, she’ll have regular wind. We have a bunch of (weather) obstacles in our
way, so we’ll just have to hope the situation plays out the way we hope.” --

Positions at 18:00 GMT (+gain/-loss from leader since previous day)
1-Paprec-Virbac 2, Jean-Pierre Dick/ Damian Foxall, 4,959 nm DTF (+288)
2-Hugo Boss, Alex Thomson/ Andrew Cape, 597 nm DTL (-20)
3-Temenos II, Dominique Wavre/ Michéle Paret, 2,314 (+8)
4-Mutua Madrilena, Javier Sanso Windmann/ Pachi Rivero, 2,500 (+42)
5-Educación sin Fronteras, Servane Escoffier/ Albert Bargues, 3,447 (+6)
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 55 – January 17, 2008 - 18:02 UTC) Exactly as he planned yesterday,
Francis Joyon is working hard today to find the best sailing conditions for
the final few days of his round the world voyage. The SW’ly wind has allowed
him to remain on the Great Circle route, taking him directly towards the
finish at Brest, France. Caution is still very much the watchword, as he
listens to his boat, worn out after 55 days of sailing and with more than
25,000 miles on the clock after the voyage around the world’s oceans. This
evening, his maxi trimaran IDEC will start to experience some gales,
generated by a low-pressure area circulating in the North Atlantic. On seas,
where the swell is now in the right direction, he will be picking up speed
again, but Joyon will continue to remain attentive right up until the end, in
order to look after his equipment and avoid any breakages. Going through the
Azores at lunchtime today gave the single-handed yachtsman a taste of home
... "IDEC will manage to obtain some more fine days, with 450 to 500 miles
under her belt..." With 1100 miles to go to the finish, Joyon is now expected
to arrive in Brest sometime on Saturday night. -- Read on:

* In the past 24 hours, Joyon has clocked an average speed of 19.7 knots
while covering 472 nm. With only 1,055 nm remaining to the finish at Brest,
France, his advance over the 2005 record set by Ellen MacArthur (71d 14h 18m
33s) is at 3,388 nm. --

Dave Perry, Dave Dellenbaugh, and Brad Dellenbaugh are teaching Rules and
Tactics Seminars in 18 locations 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 Dellebaugh’s Rules DVDs with the course. Learn more at
NorthU. Call 800 347-2457 or

* A new bi-annual distance race was announced that will start from Fort
Lauderdale, FL on February 13, 2009 and finish in the exotic, 5-star Casa De
Campo Resort, in La Romana, Dominican Republic. The 900-mile Casa de Campo
Race will track east through Northwest Providence Channel, turning southeast
at Eleuthera, skirting the Bahamas, by the Turks and Caicos Islands, to the
eastern tip on the Dominican Republic where boats will turn the corner for
the run to the finish. The International Farr 40 class recently announced
that their Rolex World Championship will be at the Casa De Campo Resort in
2010. -- Full details:

* George Sass Jr. has been named as deputy editor of the American luxury
marine magazine, Yachting. Sass will be responsible for boat tests,
electronics, and seamanship coverage. After beginning his editorial career in
1999 as an associate editor for Yachting, Sass left the title as an executive
editor in 2004. He went onto serve as an editor for Boat Digest and was most
recently the chief operating officer of Center Console Angler. Yachting
magazine is published by Bonnier Corp. and has a readership of more than 1.1
million. -- IBI Magazine, full story:

* The World Match Racing Tour has announced its schedule of ten events for
2008 including a new Tour stage in Korea with over $320,000 in prize money.
The total prize purse for the 2008 Tour season now stands at $1,720.000, the
largest in the sport. The prize purse has increased by over 20% from 2007.
The overall winner of the Tour will be crowned 2008 ISAF Match Racing World
Champion. Teams will count their best five events plus the final stage, the
Monsoon Cup in Malaysia. In 2007, no less than five teams had a shot at
winning the World Championship going into the final event. --

* This week on the Volvo Sailing Podcast is the former Chief Executive of the
Volvo Ocean Race Glenn Bourke on the reasons behind his decision to leave the
job. British Olympic sailing team Leader Stephen Park assesses his team's
chances at the Games this summer, and Andrew Pindar discusses his new
sponsorship deal with the US Olympic sailing team. --

After 50 plus years of operation, the current owners of Maddie's in
Marblehead, MA will be closing the doors as of last call on Friday night,
January 18th. Maddie's, also known as the Sail Loft (although never called
that), could be counted on for it's good cheer, convivial company and
generous cocktails, and has been "home port" for sailors, both locals and
visitors alike. Maddie's was the gathering place for regattas, storms and any
other celebration... or no celebration at all. It was just Maddie's, a place
where you knew you'd find a friendly face, a cold drink, and plenty
entertainment. --

Some of the random photos from the sport received this week at Scuttlebutt
include Rolex winners Jeff Linton and Sally Barkow, Laser sailing in the
Dominican Republic, snow-capped mountains in Southern California, the new
A-Sail on the E Scow, a day at the beach in China, and a big wave day in the
Pacific Ocean. If you have images you would like to share, send them to the
Scuttlebutt editor. Here are this week’s photos:

=> Fort Lauderdale to Key West Race: Forty-nine boats started on Wednesday,
taking advantage of this tune-up prior to next week’s Acura Key West event.
The fleet enjoyed winds in the mid-twenties, and has collected its share of
casualties along the 160-mile track, including Sarah, an X-41 in IRC B, which
lost her rudder just a mile or so from the Key West sea buoy. Line honors and
IRC A victory went to Samba Pa Ti, John Kilroy’s TP 52, completing the course
in an elapsed time of 10 hours 32 minutes and 25 seconds for an average speed
of 15.2 kts, missing the overall monohull race record by 7 and a half
minutes. -- Starting photos and event website:

=> Alinghi took the two Extreme 40 catamarans out for a shake down sail on
Thursday in Valencia, with photos and video posted on their website. Onboard
these light-weight, carbon fibre multi-hulled weapons were Alinghi designers
and sailors: Pierre-Yves Jorand, Luc Dubois, Dirk Kramers, Kirst Feddersen,
Mike Schreiber, Kurt Jordan, Aaron Perry, Murray Jones and Pieter van
Nieuwenhuyzen. --

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 Steven Davis, President, International Lightning Class Association:
Congratulations to Jeff Linton for winning the Rolex Yachtsman of the Year,
and to his wife Amy who was nominated for the Yachtswoman of the Year award.
What a sailing couple! I sailed with the Linton Team at the South American
Championship in Tomine, Colombia (and chased them at the other Lightning
events) and it was a pleasure. Jeff is always calm but has incredible boat
speed. He certainly possesses a unique talent to manage a racecourse and get
the most out of each puff and wave. He is a great competitor and ambassador
for the sport. And you should see him with a fly rod chasing down a trout or
a muskie or a redfish…he is scary!

* From Doran Cushing, St. Petersburg, FL: After a few years, maybe decades,
of meeting, talking to, and watching the best sailors in America, I can say
with an unqualified yes that Jeff Linton is a deserving Rolex Yachtsman of
the Year. He and his partner in sailing and in life, Amy Smith Linton, are
two of the most down-to-earth, modest champions I've ever had the pleasure of
knowing. A man of few words but great talent, Jeff should consider getting
the Rolex downsized to fit Amy...the champion behind the champion. Hearty
congrats to both Jeff and Amy, their crew, and the Davis Island Yacht Club in
Tampa..."the sailingest club in the South."

* From Barr Batzer: I was delighted to hear that Jeff Linton won the Rolex
yachtsman of the year award. I have sailed both with and against Jeff Linton
in many different classes. Beyond his many great achievements in so many
classes, I felt it is more important to know the character he exemplifies
while doing so. In all the times I have raced with Jeff, I can’t ever
remember him yelling or treating anybody with disrespect; a trait that seems
to get lost with success among many others. Also, in all the races I have
sailed against him, win or lose, he has always shown class, sportsmanship and
a truly humble spirit. Guys like him make sailboat racing much more fun. I
can’t think of anybody else I’d rather have my butt kicked by. Congrats Jeff!

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: I had the chance to meet Jeff and Amy Linton at the
US Sailing Championship of Champions last fall, and in regard to all the
praise I have heard here and elsewhere, all I can say is… ditto!

* From Chris Dowling, Greenport, NY: It is great that a few people are making
the effort to curb the unlawful efforts of the Japanese fleets. Another group
that is making an impact through a soon to be released film and other
peaceful actions is the Ocean Preservation Society. Their efforts to expose
and stop the "river killings" of thousands of dolphins each year are awesome!
Check out their website at to see what they have
been up to. One of their latest was getting professional surfers and actors
including Hayden Panettiere of Heroes to paddle into the opening of the river
to hold off the killing fleet.

* From Brad Avery: Regarding the thread this week on the boom preventer, here
is a system that has saved me from a few disasters. When offshore, a
preventer should be rigged from the outer end of the boom all the way forward
to the bow and back to the cockpit. The best way to do this is to keep a
permanent pennant rigged from the end of the boom to about three feet from
the gooseneck. Then set port and starboard preventer lines from just aft of
the chain plates to the bow and back along the deck to the cockpit. When
needed, tie the pennant to the lee preventer line and take up. Keeping some
slack in the newly set up preventer will greatly reduce chafe. Gybing
requires untying, re-securing the pennant to the boom, and then setting up
the new side. Once you've done it a few times, it's quick. Beyond keeping the
potential load at the end of the boom (greatly reducing the risk of breakage)
the method also allows gybing and setting up the other preventer without
going to the end of the boom (but you do have to take the pennant around the
vang and mainsheet each gybe). Always secure the preventer in the cockpit so
it can be released easily and keep a knife nearby. When not in use, make sure
the pennant is secured tightly along the boom so it does not catch anyone
during the gybe.

* From Bill Tyler: My experiences with the gybe-broach (aka the "Chinese")
while using a preventer is that you end up knocked down to weather with the
mainsail held up in the breeze pinning the boat down - as the water comes in.
If the preventer isn't set up to be eased, a FAST release (sometimes with
knife) to get the boat back on her feet sometimes results in the boom
breaking when it hits the water - or fetches up against the main sheet.
Obviously, a setup that allows the boom to be eased down avoids this result.

* From Justin Scott: In the master of understatement, Bill Biewenga’s letter
(in Scuttlebutt 2513) describes the crew of Flyer repairing the broken boom
mid-ocean in the 1981-82 Whitbread Round The World Race - when he wrote, " we
were able to screw a sleeve to the boom and we soon "back in business". In
this case, back in business meant going on to win the second consecutive
Whitbread with line honours and a handicap victory. The team and the boat
were heroes to this impressionable young man, put together by one of the last
great private entrants, Conny van Rietschoten. I guess they were also "back
in business" when Conny insisted they carry on racing despite Conny's heart
attack on the second leg.

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