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SCUTTLEBUTT 2543 – February 29, 2008

Scuttlebutt is a digest of major sailing news, commentary, opinions,
features and dock talk . . . with a North American focus. Scuttlebutt is
published each weekday with the support of its sponsors.

Marblehead, MA - Maureen McKinnon-Tucker’s orders are clear: No pity
parties. “I don’t want anyone feeling sorry for me,” she said, maintaining
an attitude she adopted not long after a freak fall from a seawall more than
a dozen years ago left her with a permanent spine bruise that requires her
to use a wheelchair for mobility. So, rather than pity, we’ll call it
“concern,” with an ample does of amazement. You see, McKinnon-Tucker is
facing a series of choices and challenges more profound than many of us will
ever experience.

In mid-January, McKinnon-Tucker and her sailing partner, Nick Scandone, were
in Miami, further establishing their credentials as the odds-on favorites to
strike gold (for the U.S.) at September’s Paralympic Games in Beijing.
McKinnon-Tucker and Scandone had won four out of five races at the Alex
Cavalgia Bluewater Classic Regatta, a performance just as dominating as
their effort to secure the right to represent the country at last October’s
U.S. Paralympic Trials in Newport, R.I., where they amassed an
insurmountable lead and were able to skip the final two races.

The thrill of the Miami victory would quickly fade with a pair of calls home
to check her 2-year-old son, Trent. The family had been concerned that Trent
was not eating or drinking and may have been dehydrated from a stomach bug,
so Trent’s grandparents had taken him to North Shore Children’s Hospital. In
the 10 minutes between when he was admitted and McKinnon-Tucker called back,
things took a shocking turn. Trent had stopped breathing, and doctors
noticed a “blown” eye pupil, indicating a problem with the brain. He was
evacuated by helicopter to Boston while Team USA Coach Betsy Alison rushed
McKinnon-Tucker and her husband to the Ft. Lauderdale airport to catch the
first flight home.

Doctors removed completely a malignant brain tumor in the rear of Trent’s
brain. He recently finished his first round of chemotherapy — with minimal
side effects, McKinnon-Tucker was happy to report — and radiation will
follow to ensure that his pituitary gland, too, is cancer free. Once the
immediate fears and concern for the family subsided, thoughts for many of
McKinnon-Tucker’s supporters turned to whether Trent’s cancer would end his
mother’s quest for a gold medal. At least for now, the answer is no. -- Read

by Andy Rice, SailJuice Blog
Good news, but also a lot of bad news, for sailors who want to see a re-vote
of the slate of 10 sailing Events being lined up for the Olympic Regatta in
Weymouth 2012. To recap, it was during the International Sailing Federation
(ISAF) November 2007 annual meeting where the Men’s Keelboat won a narrow
vote over the Multihull, and the Women’s Match Racing just edged out the
Women’s Skiff.

SailJuice was not a fan of either of these outcomes, and reported on the
eleventh-hour a change in voting procedure, a cunning move that was led by
Charley Cook from US SAILING, whose agenda was to see the keelboats remain
in the Games. (Fair play to you, by the way, Charley. I don’t agree with
what you did, but you were there to do a job for your country.)

The Royal Yachting Association (RYA) has since led a campaign to get the
voting re-opened, and made a submission to ISAF to have a re-vote take place
at the mid-year meeting. Last week the ISAF Executive Committee sat down in
Switzerland to discuss what ‘urgent’ matters should be discussed at the
mid-year meeting which takes place in Qingdao this May.

Most of the urgent matters were over relatively trivial issues, but the one
that engaged them a bit more was the RYA’s submission. The Exec referred the
matter to ISAF Constitution Committee (chaired by David Lees and
vice-chaired by a certain Charley Cook) to get a definition of ‘urgent’. The
Constitution Committee debated, did not come to a unanimous conclusion, but
ultimately deemed the RYA’s submission as non-urgent. -- Read on:

* Curmudgeon’s Comment: This is a good read for those who are engaged in the
subject. For those on the fringe, I will share that while the topic of
changing the slate of 2012 Olympic events might be addressed at the November
2008 meeting, it is likely too little too late. Also, Scuttlebutt has
attempted to contact ISAF on this very same subject during the past week, of
which we have received no response.

By Nick Dewhirst, Secretary General, IMC
The decision of the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) to exclude any
Multihull Event from the 2012 Olympic Games has shown that we cannot
entirely rely on others to promote our interests, so that there was a need
to establish our own organisation to do so. As there is no representation
for Multihulls within ISAF, either formally through a Multihull Committee,
or informally, through the interests of individual Councillors, national
multihull associations from several leading ISAF Member National Authorities
(MNA) have jointly founded the International Multihull Council.

The founder Members are the National Multihull Associations of Australia,
Great Britain, Netherlands and United States and are represented on the
Executive Committee by Paul Pascoe (AUS) as President, John Williams (USA)
as Vice President, Nick Dewhirst (GBR) as Secretary General, Edwin Lodder
(NED) as Treasurer and Rod Waterhouse (AUS).

For additional information:
IMC background information and future plans
IMC Meeting Minutes - February 12, 2008
IMC Constitution
Go to Scuttleblog:

Congratulations to father and son, Spike and Brad Boston, for setting the
record for the most fleet wins at the St. Petersburg NOOD Regatta. Spike on
"Frequent Flyer" won the S2 7.9 class, his fifth consecutive fleet title at
the regatta. Brad and his crew on "Honour" won the Ultimate 20 class, to
also set a record for five consecutive fleet titles. Also with Doyle sails,
Damian Emery and his J/105 crew on "Eclipse" and Justin Scott and his Viper
crew won their classes. Now is the time to call your local Doyle loft and
start winning; visit

Editor, columnist, television/radio host, and novelist William F. Buckley
died on February 27, 2008 at age 82. In a classic interview with Rush
Limbaugh, Buckley comments on why he sails: "I sailed the sailboat as a
result of a gradual acknowledgment of the coefficient of work over-against
satisfaction. The kind of work you need to do in order to maintain a
sailboat, to sail it competently as I did three times across the Atlantic,
once across the Pacific, requires an investment of certain ergs of energy,
and those ergs of energy give you, classically, ergs plus pleasure." --

‘Butthead Steve Pyatt was curious about how a class or event gains the
“World Championship” title. He noted that last week in Australia there was
both the JJ Giltinan International 18ft Skiff Championship, which isn't a
World championship, and 11 categories of Laser Masters World Championship
going on (not to mention all the various youth and different rig categories
and so on elsewhere). He questioned whether it is because the skiff event,
the pinnacle of skill and technology in centreboard sailing from around the
globe, wasn’t a World championships as they only get around five countries
to the start line at that level. But he also observed how some of the
categories at the Laser Masters Worlds only have one country competing (the
host nation) and most only have around six countries of which most are
predominantly from the host nation and two other countries, so effectively
only three countries. In short, Pyatt asks, “How come these types of events
can call themselves 'Worlds' and the winners 'World Champions' from such a
narrow field of the 234 (235 with Kosovo?) countries in the real World?”

To help clarify the matter, ISAF Director Luissa Smith replies, “Every ISAF
Class (both International and Recognized) is automatically (subject to
notification requirements) entitled to hold one annual World Championship.
However, to maintain that right to hold a World Championship, the class has
to meet certain criteria (see ISAF Regulation 18.2(a)) and meet average
minimum participation requirements (see ISAF Regulation 182(b)).

“In addition, an ISAF International Class may hold one gender, age or
discipline defined World Championship (youth, team racing, etc), and up to
two Women's World Championships (if the class normally races in separate
men/women fleets) and provided that one of the Women's World Championships
is exclusively dedicated to youth.

“In addition ISAF grants World Championships to Radio Sailing, Disabled
Sailing and Offshore. The detail of this policy can be found in ISAF
Regulation 18.1 through to 18.11. The ISAF Regulations are available online
at or to go to the specific regulation at[4817].pdf

* Curumudgeon’s Comment: Clear as mud. Next?

Auckland, New Zealand (February 28, 2008) - Now past the mid way point at
the 2008 Tornado World Championship, Yann Guichard and Alexandre Gaebler of
France still hold the lead. Following the abandoned day on Wednesday due to
light airs, the forecast wasn't promising for Thursday either, but fabulous
sailing conditions and warm, sunny skies allowed for the 51 boat fleet to
start on time with a north easterly breeze building through the afternoon to
around 12 knots.

Following the first race of the day, Canadian's Oskar Johansson and Kevin
Stittle held the overall lead momentarily, however, the French were quick to
fight back in the afternoon race, plus with the discard provision kicking
in, they took back the lead. Defending world champions Darren Bundock and
Glen Ashby (AUS) were the big movers of the day, shifting up to second
overall, rolling an 8-1 to be just six points adrift of the leaders. Only a
point behind the Aussies are the Canadians in third overall, with Americans
John Lovell and Charlie Ogletree scoring a 3-16 to move up to tenth overall
after their previous problem plagued day that earned them a painful

Four races remain, with the weather calling for 10-15 knot northeasterlies
Friday and 20-25 knot northerlies for the final day on Saturday. --

Miami, FL - “Drinking from the Bacardi Cup is as good as drinking from the
Fountain of Youth,” quipped American John Dane III, who won the prestigious
Star Bacardi Cup Regatta in 2006. The 57-year old, Dane who will be the
oldest of 400 sailors at the 2008 Olympics, returns for what he believes is
his 10th Bacardi Cup with his son-in-law and Olympic crew, Austin Sperry.
Sponsored in full by Bacardi U.S.A., Inc. and co-hosted by the Coral Reef
Yacht Club and the U.S. Sailing Center in Miami, FL, six days of racing will
begin Sunday, March 2nd on Biscayne Bay in Miami, FL and conclude Friday

A record Star fleet of at least 115-boats have entered, with all of the
winning Bacardi Cup skippers dating back to 1994 and many of the winning
crew to be racing in this year’s event. Among the entrants are Olympians
from Brazil, Great Britain, China, Portugal, France, Italy, Australia, New
Zealand, Poland, Germany, and Sweden, and along with Olympic hopefuls and
class regulars, the fleet will be using the Bacardi Cup as an excellent
tune-up event for the 2008 Star World Championships that will be held in
Miami in April. --

... the Lead Push and other match racing tactics. Scheduling is now underway
for 2008 North American Match Racing Clinics. The series is derived from the
WIMRA (Womens Internationall Match Racing Association) clinics offered
world-wide in 2007 using a curriculum created by Dave Perry and Liz Baylis.
Your club or fleet can host a 2 or 3 day clinic. To host (or attend),
contact Bill Gladstone at North U.,
800-347-2457, or

(February 28, 2008) After setting out from New York on January 16th, the
110-foot maxi-multihull Gitana 13 crossed the finish line of La Route de l’
Or, situated just off the infamous island of Alcatraz in San Francisco Bay
shortly after sunrise. After 43 days 38 minutes at sea, including a forced
five and a half day period where the team was waiting out a storm at Cape
Horn, Lionel Lemonchois and his nine crew improved on the reference time
held since 1998 by Yves Parlier and his men by 14 days 2 hours and 43
minutes. The maxi-catamaran in the colours of the LCF Rothschild Group
covered the 14,000 miles, which separate New York from San Francisco, at an
average speed of 15.88 knots, with the final record time awaiting approval
from the World Sailing Speed Racing Council.

Commenting on the record, skipper Lionel Lemonchois said, “We did it for the
very fact that no maxi-multihull had ever tackled it and I wanted to be the
first to attempt it… I hope this will give others the idea and the drive to
set off on it. The route is riddled with obstacles and tricky passages to
negotiate. Furthermore it’s very long!” As for what is next, Lemonchois
replied, “Our next objective is the record from San Francisco – Yokohama
(held by Geronimo with a time of 14 days 22 hours 40 minutes), with an
intended departure in three to four weeks' time.” --

* (February 28, 2008) Onboard Educación sin Fronteras, Barcelona-born sailor
Albert Bargués and French yachtswoman Servane Escoffier sailed into home
waters this morning at 06:55:02 GMT as the final finisher of the Barcelona
World Race in 5th place, after an epic 108 days 18 hours, 55 minutes and 2
seconds, sailing a total distance of 27,892 miles at an average speed of
9.45 knots! Along with with winner Paprec-Virbac 2, there were the only two
teams to complete the Barcelona World Race without stopping - a huge
accomplishment for the oldest boat in the fleet by two generations. --

* The Moore 24 'Le Flying Fish' will be among the entrants in the
double-handed division of the Pacific Cup 2008, the 2,100-mile race in July
from San Francisco to Hawaii. Sailed by Jean-Philippe Sirey and Stephane
Plihon, they are working with the all-volunteer non-profit foundation
Sailors on a Mission, and hope to use the event to help in the improvement
of health care for children and to raise awareness for the endangered oceans
through sailing adventures. Full details at

Some of the random photos from the sport received this week at Scuttlebutt
include images from the Tornado Worlds, the Star Bacardi Cup, the finish of
Gitana 13 in San Francisco, the delivery of Optimists to an organization 50
plus year olds, Ernesto Bertarelli receiving an award in Italy, some really
cool powerboats in Miami, and some ancient mariners in New Zealand. 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 Robert H. Goff, Jr.: (regarding Issue 2542 story on Calif tax laws)
Ask Rhode Island what happened when the federal tax came down on the Boating
Industry and then what happened when RI changed the sales tax on boats.

* From Michael Kennedy: The "Luxury Tax" passed by Congress inn the 1970s
killed off most of the California boat building industry. Mexico has been
building marinas at a fast clip and I would almost suspect their hand in
this tax proposal if I didn't know that the California state government is
perfectly capable of ruining the economy with no assistance.

* From Ian Bruce: In response to Bill Canfield, St Thomas VI in Issue 2542,
the impression that ISAF has made the switch back to the Int 420 for the
Youth Worlds needs some clarification. ISAF does NOT make the choice of boat
to be used in their Youth Championship, a practice that confuses and
surprises many. The choice of boat is left entirely up to the local
Organizing Committee (with the approval of their National Federation). The
choice of boat then becomes yet another political decision in our sport
based on what that country thinks is best for its own sailing agenda. The
cost of the boats is not an issue as they are supplied by the manufacturers
FOC with only the freight being picked up by the OC. The choice then comes
down to what Class they choose to support in their own country. ISAF, in
their Regulations, mandate the use of either the 29er or the Int. 420 but
they do not make that choice. If there is not a strong fleet of one boat in
the country, they will pick the other, as is the case in Denmark this
summer. My guess is the attendance in the 29er disciplines this summer,
after the successful event in Kingston last summer, will break all entry

* From Jim Champ: (regarding Bill Canfield’s letter in Issue 2542 concerning
the doublehanded boats to be used at the Youth Worlds) The youth worlds are
likely to be swapping between both the International 420 and the 29er
classes for a few years. The reason is simple - which boats can the local
sponsor/ supplier more readily re-sell after the event (because the event
supplies the boats). In some areas, 420s can scarcely be given away anymore,
while in other areas the 29ers are not popular.

This year – 2008 – is a Leap Year, and February 29 is the big day that
occurs only every four years, in years evenly divisible by 4, such as 1988,
1996, 2008 or 2016 (with the exception of century years not divisible by
400, such as 1900). Why does this occur? Although the modern calendar counts
a year as 365 days, a complete revolution of the earth around the sun takes
approximately 365 days and 6 hours. Every four years, an extra twenty-four
hours have accumulated. For three of the years, February has 28 days, but on
the fourth year one extra day is added to that calendar to keep the count
coordinated with the sun's apparent position. And that day is February 29th.

Special thanks to Doyle Sailmakers and North U.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at