Scuttlebutt Today
  Archived Newsletters »
  Features »
  Photos »

SCUTTLEBUTT 2569 – April 7, 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.

Among the more vociferous yachting federations seeking the International
Sailing Federation’s move to reconsider the slate of sailing events for the
2012 Olympic Games has been the UK’s Royal Yachting Association (RYA). When
the international sailing community was expecting the events to include a
modern high performance dinghy for women and a multihull event among the ten
fleets – and neither was selected – the RYA lobbied ISAF and fellow Member
National Authorities, believing that the decisions taken were not in the
best interests of the sport of sailing throughout the world, and requested
that ISAF reviewed its decision on three grounds:

* That the current list of events will not maximise media interest.
* That the decisions are likely to attract fewer nations and young sailors
into the sport of sailing
* That an amendment to the previously agreed voting procedure was hasty, and
the process ultimately used for selecting events was flawed

Now that ISAF has agreed to re-open the discussion surrounding the sailing
events for 2012 at its mid-year conference at Qingdao, China, in May,
Scuttlebutt has initiated a poll of the ‘buttheads to see whether the
Council should stay firm with the current list of events, or if they should
make changes. As of the publication time of this newsletter, the vote thus
far is that changes should be made (more so with the men than women), and
the lengthy list of comments provides a plethora of suggestions. A frequent
comment regards why events have to be all men or all women, and not open/
mixed. Our understanding is that this is now an Olympic requirement. To
place your vote and comments, and to check on those of others, go to

Two time Star World Champion on coaching American 2008 Olympic Star
representatives John Dane & Austin Sperry:

* How did you get involved in the Dane-Sperry Olympic campaign?
ERIKSON: I have known John Dane since the early '80s. I sailed in last years
Olympic Classes Regatta with Mark Reynolds, whose company Quantum Sails are
building the sails for the team. During the event,Mark was invited to dinner
with the teamto discuss developments for this summer's sail development and
I was invited along. I threw in my two cents from some of my recent
America's Cup experiences (wind tunnel, flow and roach profiles).
Whenputting together a summer calendar, Dane-Sperry thought it was a good
idea to have Mark come over to China for some sail development. They then
extended an invitation to me to crew with Mark and be involved in the
program. When my previous Bacardi Cup plans (crewing) fell through...I put a
quick call into Austin, asking if they'd like me in the coach boat, to keep
some continuity to the summer ahead. It's now the Worlds andI am still in
the coach boat.

*You have an outstanding background, being a world champion, Olympic
champion, Whitbread champion and Americas Cup campainger. How have these
accomplishments been instrumental in your career as a coach and or personal
ERIKSON: Between 1987-2007, I participated in six Americas Cup Campaigns,
with three teams reaching the finals and won seven World
Championships...ranging from 22' Star Boats to 80' Maxi Yachts. The
accomplishments are really only the end result. More importantly, it was the
process and the people I have had the opportunity to associate myself with,
who to me are the reason why I coach. The lessons I have learned, I continue
to use daily. I have never considered myself a "great sailor"; but, I have
sailed and hung out with a lot of the "true greats"! -- Read on:

With the date for the next America’s Cup now in the hands of the New York
Supreme court, the tough question is what will happen next? Justice Herman
Cahn seems to be sticking closely to the Mercury Bay decision – in that the
role of the Court is to interpret the Deed of Gift against the actions of
the parties – and confirming or denying compliance. Given that this Match is
being conducted in the absence of Mutual Consent on any point, the America’s
Cup could be headed for some bizarre twists.

Out of the courtroom, Alinghi probably hold more cards than many give them
credit. The risk from the Challenger’s perspective is that Justice Herman
Cahn will rule that the original Match dates of July 2008 are binding as
stated in the original Notice of Challenge. That will give BMW Oracle Racing
a little under three months to get their multihull from the building site in
Anacortes, WA to the yet to be named Match venue. October 2008 is a more
comfortable date - while still cutting off the potential for Alinghi to
start the design and build process for a similar sized multihull.

Currently BMW Oracle's multihull is still under construction and is yet to
emerge into its assembly phase in the tent constructed outside the build
facility. At that point the hulls must be assembled and fitted out. Then it
will be interesting to see if the multihull is sea trialed in USA, but the
chances are that it will not. Then it must be flown to a yet to be advised
Match venue, assembled and put into sailing mode, sea trialed and then put
into race mode. That is a lot of work to get through by early July - and
barring mishaps, which are always on the cards with this type of boat -
three months is a more comfortable sea trialing and work up period. –
excerpt from Sail World, read on:

Team McLube’s new environmentally friendly citrus-based Hullkote Speed
Polish does it all for you. Hullkote cleans, polishes, and protects in a
single fast, easy wipe-on/ wipe-off application and gives your hull that
deep showroom quality shine. Race proven fast, Hullkote completely seals all
surfaces, keeps your hull cleaner, lasts longer, provides the best UV
protection available, is entirely safe to use and is environmentally
friendly… no harmful petroleum distillates like most other polishes. Learn
more about Hullkote by visiting the Harken/ McLube booth at the Strictly
Sail Pacific Boat Show, and watch this space for more info coming soon:

* The Strictly Sail Pacific will be held again at Jack London Square in
Oakland, CA on April 16-20, 2008, and Scuttlebutt has discount tickets. To
purchase, go to

Brad Butterworth believes Team New Zealand is on the cusp of going broke and
has no chance of sailing in another America's Cup if managing director Grant
Dalton stays at the helm. In an explosive interview with the Sunday
Star-Times the Alinghi skipper and former America's Cup winning Team NZ

* Slams Dalton's decision to sue the Swiss syndicate, saying it was an act
of betrayal that will ultimately lead to his demise.
* Reveals that he barely speaks to his friend and former sailing partner
Russell Coutts because of the legal battle between Alinghi and Coutts' BMW
Oracle syndicate over the next America's Cup.
* Says Alinghi owner Ernesto Bertarelli essentially ensured Team NZ was at
last year's America's Cup in Valencia by arranging sponsorship and providing
finance to the Kiwis.

Dalton denies the claims. But Butterworth has documents and details that
appear to reveal that Alinghi owner Ernesto Bertarelli not only saved Team
New Zealand with a loan in 2003 but set up a sponsorship deal with Spanish
brewer Estrella Damm so the team could compete in Valencia. He also financed
the air freight of a Team NZ boat when it was cash-strapped and shared last
year's regatta spoils, writing a multi-million-dollar cheque to Team NZ from
its profits. -- Read on:

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

There’s a new wave in ocean racing, and the Transpacific Yacht Race will
ride it to Hawaii in 2009. The Trans Pacific Yacht Club board of directors
has posted an Advance Notice of Entry Requirements for the 45th race from
Los Angeles to Honolulu next year with two key changes: a maximum length
overall (LOA) extended to 30.48 meters (100 feet) for fastest elapsed time
or course record contenders and the free use of stored energy for sail
hoisting, trimming and adjusting---essentially, ending a Transpac ban on
powered winches.

Entry chairman Bill Lee said, “We wanted to set a limit consistent with the
major races in the rest of the world, and 30.48 is where it’s going. This
should include all of the modern 100-foot racing boats, and is consistent
with the International Maxi Association’s maximum size for racing boats.”
The 30.48-meter limit matches that established recently by the International
Maxi Association. Other changes include:

* A multihull fleet with a minimum of two entries and no maximum size or
rating limit but a minimum LOA of 45 feet.
* Heavy cruising Aloha Division-type boats which are not contenders for the
course record are permitted to enter and compete for Aloha division prizes,
even if they exceed 30.48 meters in length.
* Minimum LOA of 26 feet for monohulls and a rated speed equal to that of a
Catalina 34 with spinnaker and 155% jib.
* Minimum crew will be two, and the use of auto pilots will be allowed only
on boats competing for double handed prizes.
* A tungsten bulb that meets all of the conditions of the IRC grandfather is
Complete announcement:

The Clipper 07-08 Round the World Yacht Race is underway again. The 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
was on the fifth leg from Qingdao, China to Santa Cruz, CA, with a brief
pitstop in Hawaii, when the race was halted on March 13th following the
dismastings of two boats on this 4,400-nautical mile leg.

The fleet headed to Ala Wai Harbor in Honolulu, Hawaii, and with logistic
hurdles overcome, the masts and rigging for the two boats were replaced
(Durban 2010 and Beyond and along with the
replacement of rigging fittings for the entire ten boat fleet. With a
thorough inspection of the fleet, the race got underway on April 5th after a
start in a stiff breeze off the island of Oahu in Hawaii.

The leg from Hawaii to Santa Cruz is expected to take the fleet around 14
days to complete, giving an ETA into Santa Cruz of April 19th. Due to the
delays in Hawaii, the Clipper Race Team has made the decision to shorten the
Santa Cruz stopover to make up time and is currently looking to start the
next leg on April 23rd, which takes the fleet from Santa Cruz through the
Panama Canal to Jamaica. -- Race site:

Wherever your offshore plans take you - to Bermuda, Mackinac or beyond - now
is the time to check the rules and your sail inventory. Bring your sails to
your local Doyle loft to be inspected and repaired. Don't wait until the
last minute to order your storm jib! Call 800-94-DOYLE or visit

* Auckland, NZL (April 6, 2008) Claire Leroy of France secured her second
consecutive world title Sunday at the BSPORT ISAF Women's Match Racing World
Championship. Claire Leroy (FIN), Silja Lehtinen (FIN), Liz Baylis (USA),
and Josie Gibson (GBR) all reached the semifinals in straight wins during
the quarterfinal round, knocking out the remaining Southern Hemisphere
opponents in the process. After Leroy got past Gibson, and Baylis coming
from behind to beat Lehtinen, the finals were thwarted by a lack of wind,
forcing the final placings to be determined on countback, with American Liz
Baylis taking silver and Silja Lehtinen of Finland bronze. -- Event site:

* Blanes, Spain (April 5, 2008) Going into the Medal Race on Saturday at the
2008 Yngling European Champions, seven points was the difference between the
first six boats. After the full-length, twice-around, windward-leeward
course, the final leg to the finish found Sarah Ayton (GBR), Sally Barkow
(USA), Renee Groeneveld (NED), and Mandy Mulder (NED) all side to side, with
a late jib by Barkow’s team providing them the win by a foot over the Brits.
Ayton’s team retained the overall title by a single point over the
Americans, with Groenveld three points further back in third. -- Event

* (April 6, 2008 - 10:22) Lionel Lemonchois and his ten crew celebrated
their first week at sea in their North Pacific record attempt last night at
21h45’45’’ UT. Conserving a comfortable 551 mile lead over the reference
time for the San Francisco to Yokohama, Japan route, the 33 metres
maxi-catamaran Gitana 13 equipped by Baron Benjamin de Rothschild is making
headway on a reach as the crew prepare to negotiate another cold front late
today. --

* Pirates seized a French sailing yacht off the coast of Somalia last Friday
and have taken the 30 member crew hostage. La Ponant, a 289-foot three-mast
luxury sailing vessel, was heading to the Mediterranean Sea from Seychelles
when it was attacked in the Gulf of Aden. There were no passengers on board
at the time. The International Maritime Bureau lists Gulf of Aden and
Somalia waters as a piracy prone area. The IMB Piracy Reporting Centre
received 31 actual and attempted attacks in 2007, although many go
unreported, and recommends vessels not stopping in Somalia keep at least 200
nautical miles away from the coast. -- Orlando Sentinel, complete story:

* Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Pan American Games sailing gold medalist Pedro
Tinoco Amaral of Brazil was shot and slightly wounded during a fight early
Saturday morning. Police said the 23-year-old Amaral, who won the Snipe
category at the 2007 Pan American Games held in Rio de Janeiro, was shot in
front of a nightclub while defending a friend during a fistfight. Police
said a single bullet entered and exited Amaral's upper left thigh without
causing any major damage. He was treated and released from a hospital. --
International Herald Tribune,

* The Herreshoff Marine Museum and America's Cup Hall of Fame announced that
Mr. Lawrence A. Fisher has been welcomed aboard as the museum's new
Executive Director. The appointment follows a nationwide search conducted by
Egmont Associates of Boston, MA who specialize in executive recruitment for
non-profit institutions. Mr. Fisher comes to the Herreshoff Museum with more
than thirty years experience in the planning, design, and administration of
museums and cultural heritage organizations. -- Complete announcement:

* Organised by Yacht Club Cagliari (ITA), the second event of the RC 44
Championship Tour 2008 - The Cagliari Cup on April 23-27 - is full of
promises, with no less than ten strict one design RC 44’s and world class
sailors such as Ben Ainslie, James Spithill, Russell Coutts, Sébastien Col,
and Cameron Appleton competing. Following their first event in Dubai, the RC
44 fleet is currently in transport, and will reach Italy (La Spezia) on
April 9, and then will be transported to Cagliari by Moby Line. --

Kialoa III, an incredible sailing yacht and one of the greatest maxis, is
for sale. Certainly the most beautiful S&S/ Pedrick/ Palmer Johnson. Very
nice full interior, great owner's stateroom, guest, four heads, huge salon.
Set up for cruising and fun racing. 79 x 17.6 x 12. For details, contact

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 Burleigh J. Brewer: Last month there was an incident in Mexico with
the 100-foot Northstar yacht, BESEME. In transit they were approached after
dusk by a RIB carrying six men wearing ski masks, and a machine gun mounted
on the bow. The RIB hailed BESEME on channel 16 claiming to be the Mexican
Navy and ordered them to stop and be boarded for an " Inspection". One of
the guests aboard BESEME was a retired US Coast Guard officer. They replied
to the "Navy" boat to identify the Mexican Navy boat by name and number and
the commanding officer. No reply.

BESEME call to the US Coast Guard via Sat phone and was put in touch with
the Mexican Navy. BESEME was told that the Mexican Navy does not operate
that way so BESEME continued on. The RIB made several attempts to pull
alongside and board but BESEME open full throttle and pulled away. The RIB
followed for about six miles.

It is uncertain if the RIB was manned by pirates looking to rob the boat,
or drug runners looking to steal the boat and run drugs. Either way extreme
caution should be exercised when being approached by unknown vessels on the
Mexican coast. Having US Coast Guard contact numbers for the sat phone is
probably a good idea too. Traveling in pairs would be another good idea for
slower boats. -- To read the complete incident report (and provide

* From Bill Gibbs: I don't see how US Sailing can claim to represent
multihulls after booting them out of the Olympics. I would hope that any
mandatory membership for racing would have a suitable exclusion for all us
non-represented multihull racers.

* From Andrea Falcon: The Women's Match Racing worldwide is probably the
fastest growing aspect in our sport today, as Henry L. Menin, Chairman, ISAF
Match Racing Committee, wrote last week (in SBUTT 2566). Ok, but the Men's
Match Racing worlwide is a reality, a big reality, already very well grown,
and still growing! Come on, everybody knows that what ISAF decided last year
for the 2012 Olympics is absolutely silly: no multihulls, match race for
women (which is good) but not for men and, even it was for only 24 hours,
the Star class out of the Games. Everybody, except ISAF Committees' members.

* From Jim Champ: (regarding Anne Newton’s letter in ‘sbutt 2568, who asks
why the Yngling is an Olympic boat) Because the Yngling was the “only”
remotely suitable keelboat class with anything approaching worldwide
distribution… and still is. Other alternatives are basically found
principally only in Europe, only in the Americas (like the J/22) or in the
ex British Commonwealth and don't have any degree of worldwide popularity.
The Yngling was the only class with some kind of numbers in all three of
Europe, the Americas and Oceania. You can check this out n the class annual
reports on the ISAF website.

* From Howard Bentley, San Francisco, CA: (regarding the America’s Cup) I
wonder how popular, football, basketball, and baseball would be if one team
got to rig the game, officials, and rules. About as popular as yacht racing,
I suppose.

* From Alfred Poor: Alinghi — I mean, SNG — says that they can’t build a
competitive multihull in time for an October start. As a folk music fan, I
turn to a traditional tune for a solution: Mattie Groves. In the song, the
Lord Arlen finds Mattie Groves in bed with his wife. He calls Mattie out,
but Mattie complains that he is unarmed while Lord Arlen has two swords.
Lord Arlen then shows nothing but class:

“Well it's true I have two beaten swords, they cost me deep in the purse
But you will have the better of them and I will have the worst.”

If SNG can’t get it together in time, and GGYC has had a sizable head start
on development, then let’s turn this into a one design race. GGYC continues
on and builds two (or four or whatever) of the new boats, and lets SNG take
their pick of the hulls. SNG pays for half of the cost. Once the hull design
is frozen and construction started, each team is free to develop the rig and
the rest of the trimmings as they choose (under whatever limitations the
rules might require).

This eliminates the development time for SNG, and guarantees that both sides
are equally benefited by GGYC’s head start. This also would inject some
much-needed class into the whole mess; I’m sure that Lord Arlen would

Some people can stay longer in an hour than others can in a week.

Special thanks to Team McLube, Doyle Sailmakers, and Orange Coast College.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at