Scuttlebutt Today
  Archived Newsletters »
  Features »
  Photos »

SCUTTLEBUTT 2553 – March 14, 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.

by Urban Miyares, Challenged America:
The tragic sinking of One Australia in 1995 (Scuttlebutt #2552 Video Of The
Week) brought back vivid memories of a side to the story that few knew
about. On that day in 1995, John Bertrand, One Australia skipper, was
hosting a fundraising event for the San Diego-based Challenged America
program, to benefit sailors with disabilities. During that infamous day,
many of us at Challenged America watched the race with the One Australia
shore crew team in their compound, when the television broadcast came
through of the boat sinking.

We were all in shock, numb, in utter silence as we listened to the One
Australia chase boat give a constant report to the compound. Being there was
a different story from what others saw on television, as plans were being
made instantly over the radio. Then One Australian said, "Let's get to it,
we got work to do," and immediately, like a dress rehearsal, the One
Australia team rushed into the adjoining tent to urgently make ready their
back-up boat, with others on the Team heading to the dock to wait for the
crew to return from their MOB experience.

Work on their second boat continued throughout the day and into the early
evening when we at Challenged America, with invitations already distributed
and the front gate to the compound lining up with the media, were concerned
our major fundraising effort for the year was going to be canceled, and
justifiably so -- especially with security closing the compound’s front gate
to the public. But before the Challenged America event was suppose to begin,
Mr. Bertrand came out and told us everything would be fine and the event
must go on, despite the work in the tent adjoining our fundraising event.

And the event was held, with John Bertrand and some of the One Australia
crew taking a break to socialize with the Challenged America guests and do a
brief speech. All of us at Challenged America will forever be indebted to
John Bertrand and the One Australia Team for their genuine support of
sailors with disabilities and Challenged America, in spite of some very
tragic and extenuating circumstances. As everyone knows, the Australians
were able to get their second boat ready and continue racing. One Australia
might not have won the America's Cup that year, but they definitely are
winners in our eyes and hearts. Thank you John Bertrand. -- Urban Miyares
* Video:
* Challenged America

(March 13, 2008) Edmonton's Lawrence Lemieux is among 12 inductees into the
Alberta Sports Hall of Fame today. At the 1988 Seoul Olympics, Lemieux was
sailing in second place when he gave up his pursuit of a medal to rescue two
sailors on the Singapore team that was competing in a separate event. With
winds gusting to 35 knots, churning the water with high waves, Lemieux
rescued the two sailors - one who was bobbing, nearly drowning, the other
who was clinging to his overturned boat.

Lemieux, who started sailing at the Edmonton Yacht Club, pulled the men onto
his boat and then waited until an official patrol boat reached them.
Afterwards, International Olympic Committee president Juan Antonio Samaranch
awarded Lemieux the Pierre de Coubertin medal for sportsmanship. "By your
sportsmanship, self-sacrifice and courage you embody all that is right with
the Olympic ideal," said Samaranch. -- Edmonton Journal, full story:

The Clipper 07-08 Round The World Yacht Race started from the maritime city
of Liverpool in the North West of England back in September 2007, with ten
identical 68-foot yachts led by a professional skipper and crewed by
individuals who paid for the opportunity to compete in the event. Scheduled
to compete a seven-leg route, the fleet is presently on the fifth leg from
Qingdao, China to Santa Cruz, CA, with a brief pitstop in Hawaii. All has
gone smoothly except for this 4,400-nautical mile leg, where two boats have
now been dismasted.

The first casualty was on March 5th, which had its
mast snapped approximately in half whilst sailing in approximately 10-15
knots of wind under spinnaker. The second occurred on Thursday, March 13,
2008 at 0610 GMT on the 19th day of the leg, when Durban 2010 and Beyond was
dismasted at deck level whilst sailing in approximately 20 knots of wind.
The yacht, currently 780 miles from the finish line in Honolulu, Hawaii,
will proceed by motor.

The two dismastings are not thought to have been caused in the same manner,
but with 85 percent of the leg completed and as a precautionary measure in
the interest of the safety for the remaining crews, event organizer Clipper
Ventures Plc, headed by renowned yachtsman Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, has told
the rest of the fleet to stop racing and to proceed to Honolulu. The Clipper
Race Committee decided to shorten the course in accordance with the Clipper
Sailing Instructions, and thus finished the current leg at 0600 GMT, March
13, 2008. -- Full report:

If you’re a sailor who aspires to represent your club by racing the same
boat that Gavin Brady, Dean Barker, and Ed Baird sailed to victory in recent
years, you don’t have to do the America’s Cup. Just charter one of the
Congressional Cup boats, a Catalina 37, when Acura presents Ullman Sails
Long Beach Race Week June 27-29. As usual, the Yacht Club Challenge
competition will include three boats from either a single club or a
geographic region---but this year one must be a Catalina 37 chartered from
the Long Beach YC. Information:

More than 600 participants from 116 different countries were in Jordan for
the fourth IOC World Conference on Women and Sport, which was held under the
theme of “Sport as a vehicle for social change”. Concluding this past
Monday, Luissa Smith, Head of the Training and Development Department at the
ISAF Secretariat, represented ISAF at the Conference, whilst Fiona Kidd
(CAN), chair of the ISAF Women’s Forum, and ISAF Council Member Nazli Imre
(TUR) were also both in attendance as part of delegations from their
National Olympic Committees. Another sailing representative in Jordan was
triple Olympic medallist Barbara KENDALL (NZL), who attended in her role as
a member of the IOC Athletes' Commission.

By the end of the conference the participants agreed unanimously and
committed themselves to a future strategy which focuses on actions in five
specific areas:
- Seize upcoming opportunities to promote gender equality
- Governance
- Empowerment through Education and Development
- Women, Sport and the Media
- Women, Sport and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)
Full report:

* Racing begins on Saturday, March 15th for the 2008 Women’s Laser Radial
World Championship, with 120 entries are already confirmed with
representatives from 40 countries attending the event in Takapuna, Auckland,
New Zealand. Not only is the 2008 World title up for grabs, but also the six
remaining Olympic berths (of 26 total) will be contested at the Worlds. Of
the 23 nations entered who have yet to qualify, they are Brazil, Croatia,
Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Spain, Estonia, Greece, India, Ireland, Virgin
Islands, Japan, Latvia, Malaysia, Paraguay, Peru, Portugal, Russia,
Singapore, Serbia, Sweden, Chinese Taipei, Turkey and Venezuela. -- Full

* This weekend, the battle begins for the final qualification place at the
2008 ISAF Women's Match Racing World Championship. To date, 13 of the 14
teams for the 2008 Worlds have been decided, with the final skipper to
qualify at the ISAF Grade 2 Harken Women's International Match Racing
Regatta, taking place in Sydney, Australia from March 16-19. The 2008 ISAF
Women's Match Racing World Championship will be hosted by the Royal New
Zealand Yacht Squadron in Auckland, with racing scheduled from April 1-6. --

Mirko Groeschner of United Internet Team Germany is very hopeful that the
America’s Cup Grand Prix series that he working on will take place this
year. Groeschner said that he could confirm they were in very positive talks
with four European cities: A northern Europe city that does not want to be
named at present; Kiel in Germany, Trieste in Italy and Valencia in Spain.
If negotiations reach a successful conclusion the first event would be held
at the unnamed northern European city on July 13 and each city involved
would host a Grand Prix event for about a week. “We area small
organisation,” said Groeschner “so we are focusing on cities that have a
connection with one of the teams that would take part, so that the team is
in a position to undertake the lobbying and logistics. I am really
optimistic because of the positive reactions from potential host cities,
teams and international sponsors. There is great interest out there in
America’s Cup style racing.” -- BYM News, full story:

* A presentation by Marc Pajot, President and Team Manager of the new French
America’s Cup challenger French Spirit, will be held in Paris on March 20,
2008. --

* The BoatU.S. Foundation for Boating Safety has made it a little easier for
Spanish-speaking boaters to check the "rules of the road" with a new Boat
Handling Guide decal in Spanish that can be affixed on the helm. The decal
is free to boat clubs, marinas or other groups in quantities up to 200. The
weatherproof decal gives examples of the most common types of navigational
markers, rules of the road and right of way illustrations, and an
explanation of horn signals. -- Complete details:

* The National Transportation Safety Board will hold a two-day public
hearing as part of its ongoing investigation into the accident in which the
901-foot container ship M/V Cosco Busan spilled about 55,000 gallons of fuel
oil after striking the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. The hearing will
convene at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, April 8, 2008, at the NTSB's Board Room and
Conference Center, 429 L'Enfant Plaza, SW., Washington, D.C. -- Complete

* The 2008 Discover Boating advertising campaign kicked into high gear
recently with new components specifically designed to help interested
consumers order the Discover Boating DVD and, ultimately, drive these
potential buyers to manufacturers and dealers, Grow Boating organizers
reported. The campaign is national in scope, meaning it reaches every home
across the United States via cable television, magazines, the Internet and
now, mobile technology. The campaign started the last week of February and
will run through the first week of June for a total of 15 weeks. -- Full

* William H. Constable, a Nantucket contractor and high school sailing
coach, could receive up to 30 years for each of seven counts of sexual
exploitation and up to 10 years for one count of possession of child
pornography, stemming from his arrest October 19, 2007 (as reported in Issue
2460). A plea deal reached with federal prosecutors calls for Constable, 54,
to serve 25 years at most. U.S. District Court Judge George A. O’Toole Jr.
will announce June 10 whether he will accept the deal. -- Boston Herald,
full story:

... Lead Push and other match racing techniques at a North U Match Racing
Clinic. Never mind the America’s Cup – learn to match race yourself. Check
the line up for 2008 North American Match Racing Clinics, or inquire to
host. The series is derived from the WIMRA ( clinics offered
worldwide 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 visit

Some of the random photos from the sport received this week at Scuttlebutt
include images by international shooters Onne van der Wal, Thierry Martinez,
Bob Grieser, and Gilles Martin-Raget, with photos from France, Dubai, St.
Maarten, Australia, along with San Francisco and Miami. If you have images
you would like to share, send them to the Scuttlebutt editor. Here are this
week’s photos:

* ‘Butthead Ralph Godkin sent in photo’s from last week’s MEXORC, which was
hosted by Vallarta Yacht Club with help from San Diego Yacht Club, and
sailed on the beautiful waters of Banderas Bay in Mexico. Bill Turpin’s
Akela, a 77’ Reichel Pugh from San Francisco won Class A, and was first
overall. Winning in Class B, and second overall, was Jim Gregory’s 50'
Morpheus, also from San Francisco. The winner of Class C, and third overall
was Ernesto Amtmann’s 43’ Bandido, from Acapulco, Mexico. See 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 Chip Croft: Sailboat images have always been equated with serenity
and beauty not ugliness. The beauty of sail will certainly endure. As for
"ugly" wind farms, this is a design problem. Today's windmills will
eventually give way to safer (for birds, bats, etc), visually pleasing,
nearly invisible wind generators. Meanwhile, current windmills are urgently
needed to minimize our addiction to fossil fuels. As the great visionary and
lover of sailing, Buckminster Fuller, put it, our only salvation is "... by
employing only our daily energy income from Sun and gravity ... in time to
permit the healthy continuance of humans on plant Earth." How true!

* From Douglass Sisk: (re: AUS35 video calamity in ‘Butt 2551) Whether or
not you are disgusted with the current state of America's Cup affairs
matters not, it's just not every day that you get to see a sailing yacht
sink. And since we all know that nobody got hurt, it can't help but bring a
smile to my face. An apt metaphor, perhaps?

* From T.J. Perrotti: (regarding Video of the Week in Issue 2551) With a
minor word substitution, Peter Montgomery's commentary on the sinking of One
Australia might be sadly prophetic: "The America's Cup is sinking and
sinking fast. This is terminal ... Raise your arm above your head, bring it
down at a steady pace, and that's how quickly the America's Cup is sinking.
Going, going, going, gone." Sad ... very sad...

* From Annie Hauer: Regarding the Video of the Week, One Australia's sponsor
Fosters Lager missed an opportunity for a classic sales pitch:
"Fosters...Goes Down Smooth!"

* From Eric White: Bravo to Dan Dickison for cutting through the humor to
lead the recycling crusade in his letter in 'butt 2552. Drinking lots of
beer and putting the cans in landfills is totally irresponsible. Too bad he
didn't take it one better and ban beer drinking on boats altogether. Rum is
the traditional sailor's drink! Best of all, an entire crew can get blind
drunk while needing do dispose of only one empty half gallon bottle -
responsibly, of course.

* From Simon Morgan: Regarding your comment in Scuttlebutt 2551 concerning
US Sailing's voting position, Article 41 of ISAF regulations is quite
specific as to how Councillors should vote. According to Article 41, “they
shall have regard to the interest of the sport of yachting throughout the
world as a whole” and according to Article 29, “The word ‘shall' is

As Paul Henderson, Previous President of ISAF stated in Scuttlebutt (#2482
and 2522), “The most interesting observation is to see how many MNA's are
now saying that their delegates were instructed to vote in the best interest
of their specific country winning medals - not in the best interest of our
beloved sport. Surprise! Surprise! Holier than thou pontifications are quite
hollow methinks.” Later he added, “Multihulls should be in the Olympics.”

The United Kingdom Catamaran Racing Association warned ISAF that this was
likely before the ISAF Annual General Meeting in November 2007, but this
warning was ignored (Appendix 1). To my knowledge, ISAF has now received
submissions from AUS, DEN, FRA, RUS and UK concerning the selection of
events. Within Australia’s submission, they state 'As an example, in the
men's vote, the US delegates voted against their own submission choosing to
vote against the Multihull rather than the Board.' and suggested tactical
voting was the reason for a change in voting procedure promoted by Charley
Cooke to the Council, the effects of which it seems, may not have been
apparent to all Councillors voting.

Paul Henderson's excellent advice that IOC should be lobbied to retain the
eleventh event should perhaps be seriously considered

* From Nick Dewhirst, General Secretary, International Multihull Council:
(regarding the interest to re-open the event selection at the ISAF mid-year
meeting in May) ISAF Minutes for the February Executive Meeting only record
three letters of concern being received. In an interview with Sailjuice,
ISAF Secretary General Jerome Pels suggested that the only MNA to be
concerned was the RYA.

We believe a variety of submissions have now been made to ISAF about its
Selection of Olympic Events in November last year. These include Australia,
Denmark, France, Russia and UK. These include the host nation for the 2012
Games and the two top sailing nations, who won 7 of the 11 Gold medals in
the pre-Olympics in China. Reportedly Canada has also made a submission and
there may be others that we cannot confirm at this stage. This is in
addition to various submissions from multihull classes. When they are all
counted, they may exceed the record 11 submissions on Women's Match Racing
before the November 2007 Conference.

* From Richard Johnson: I truly wish that Scuttlebutt would stop defending
US SAILING'S decision to vote against having multihulls in the 2012 Olympics
because of the USA's perceived lack of medal potential. It's a crying shame
that our National Governing Body puts the interests of Olympic sponsors
ahead of the interests of our sport. It will be fascinating to see what
group US SAILING will disenfranchise next, but I'll watch that from the
sidelines, as a non-member.

You know you're a redneck when a tornado hits your neighborhood and does
$100,000 worth of improvements.

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: This ends a full week of redneck observations, of
which we received one complaint. If you can handle it, we also have a
redneck video with some guys wakeboarding behind a four-wheeler. Have a
great weekend! Video:

Special thanks to Acura/Ullman Sails Long Beach Race Week and North U.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at