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SCUTTLEBUTT 2577 - April 17 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.

Something was wrong with Sally Ann. For months, she sputtered and choked,
and Barry Treahy's remedies weren't working. He kept changing her fuel
filters. Then he rebuilt her carburetor. Finally, he cut into her gas tank,
cleaned out the mysterious caramel-colored gunk and patched her up -- twice.
Disaster struck on a summer day in San Diego, when Treahy's beloved 20-foot
fishing boat was parked street side with the outer hull plug open to drain
any residual water. The boat's 55-gallon gas tank failed and gasoline
streamed into the bilge and down the street.

"I wasn't smart enough to figure it out at first," Treahy said of Sally
Ann's chronic troubles. Finally, he found the answer in a boating magazine.
Ethanol-laced gasoline was dissolving his boat's fiberglass fuel tank,
sending bits of resin to clog filters and ultimately eating a hole all the
way through the tank. Years of adding ethanol to gasoline to reduce air
pollution and foreign oil dependence has had a nasty side effect: The stuff
appears to damage boat fuel tanks made of fiberglass. And California is a
floating testing ground for the ethanol effect.

At the beginning of 2004, all gasoline sold in the state was required to
carry 5.7% ethanol as a replacement for the banned fuel additive methyl
tertiary butyl ether, or MTBE, which was fouling groundwater supplies. Some
boaters were unaware of the ramifications of the switch. Lawrence Turner,
stuck with more than $35,000 in ethanol-related damage to his boat, decided
to fight back. Last week, the Studio City resident sued Chevron Corp., Exxon
Mobil Corp. and eight other gasoline producers and distributors in U.S.
District Court, arguing that the companies sold gasoline at marinas without
warning boaters of ethanol's harmful consequences. - LA Times, read on:,0,2271802.story

Originally known as the OSTAR (Observer Single-handed Transatlantic Race),
the first editions of this classic east to west solo race had the
competitors leaving Plymouth, England and little was heard from them until
they appeared over the horizon on arrival in the USA and only then would it
be revealed the final positions in the race. With today's modern technology,
it is possible to track the position of the fleet as they cross the Atlantic
24/7. For the Artemis Transat that is set to start May 11th, race organizers
have decided to add some extra intrigue and remind us of the days when
little was known of the exact positions on the race course, by providing no
positions to anyone at all on one of the days of the race.

Since there is already a daily 12-hour blackout between 1800 and 0600GMT,
this one-day blackout will effectively mean 36 hours without any positions
(eg from say Friday 1800 to Sunday 0600). This means there will be one day
in the life of the race with respect to daily media output, where it will be
a question of speculation, of skipper's theories, of team's guesses, of
everyone becoming an expert in trying to work out what is happening and of
course, an opportunity for boats to really take some different options
without their competitors knowing. - Complete report:

* The blackout period will be decided and announced at least 48 hours before
the start, which now has 15 Open 60's and 10 Class 40's planning to compete
in this Atlantic crossing from England to Boston, MA.

Miami, FL (April 16, 2008) -- Current World Champion Mascalzone Latino
charged to the head of the 33-boat fleet on the first day of racing during
the 2008 Rolex Farr 40 World Championship. With three races completed in the
10-race series, there are at least a dozen boats that can win the overall
title, however today belongs to the Italians. Despite a last minute change
of tactician, with American Morgan Larson arriving this morning on the red
eye from the West Coast to fill in for Adrian Stead who returned home for
the birth of his first child, the defending champions rolled through the
day's best scoreline.

Gear breakdowns plagued some of the boats, with Stratis Andreadis's Atalanti
(GRE) among the victims, as their 5-2 in the first two raced was chased by a
25th in the third. "Unfortunately, we had a little bad luck in the last
race," said Atalanti tactician Brad Read (Newport, R.I.). "We broke a jib
and the main halyard going up the first beat. Overall, we've had some
struggles in the past few regattas, but the team has amazed me with their
perseverance and their learning curve." Racing continues through April 19th,
with Thursday's forecast for 11-15 knot winds from the Northeast. --
Complete story:

Preliminary results (Top ten of 33)
1. ITA, Mascalzone Latino, Vincenzo Onorato, 3-12- 1, 16 pts
2. ITA, Joe Fly, Giovanni Maspero, 9-1-8, 18
3. USA, Groovederci 57, Deneen Demourkas, 11-6-5, 22
4. ITA, Calvi Network, Carlo Alberini, 6-9-12, 27
5. SUI, Alinghi, Ernesto Bertarelli, 8-14-6, 28
6. JPN, Sled, Takashi Okura,2 -10-18, 30
7. USA, Barking Mad, Jim Richardson, 23-5-3, 31
8. GRE, Atalanti, Stratis Andreadis, 5-2-25, 32
9. MON, Mean Machine, Peter de Ridder, 24-3-9, 36
10. USA, Plenty, Alexander Roepers, 21-11-4, 36
Live course updates:

With two new builds scheduled to leave the shop soon, Goetz Custom Boats is
gearing up for a very busy summer. Following the departure of the J/V
designed TP52 Platoon for the Medcup, and PUMA's Botin Carkeek Volvo 70
launch, the builders will begin work on a Rogers Yacht Design 82'
cruiser/racer, as well as an 85 foot racer for a European client. For more
details on these and other GCB projects, or information on how to schedule
your refit or IRC optimization, visit

Miami, FL (April 16, 2008) -- Big wind shifts from the Northwest to the East
with winds ranging from 8 to 20 knots were accommodated with two start line
resets and a change on the course after the second weather mark today in the
2008 Star World Championships at Coral Reef Yacht Club. Iain Percy and crew
Andrew Simpson (GBR) took first place and sailed like the world champions
they are. However, their black flag in race two and a disqualification in
race four, put them out of the running for anything but a mid-fleet finish
overall. Diego Negri/Luigi Viale (ITA) finished second and John Dane/Austin
Sperry (USA) came in third.

The Polish team of Mateusz Kusznierewicz/Dominik Zycki, current holders of
the number one ISAF ranking for the Star Class, moved into first place
overall after the fifth race in the six race series. "Everyone near us on
the start got a black flag," said Kusznierewicz. "It was a difficult
beginning and we started late, but safe." By the second leeward gate, the
Poles had passed almost 30 boats and were in 10th and striking distance for
the final beat to the finish line, and closed out fourth in the race. --
Complete story:

Preliminary results (Top ten of 104)
1. POL, Mateusz Kusznierewicz / Dominik Zycki, 1-1-(44)-3-4, 9 pts
2. ITA, Diego Negri / Luigi Viale, 3-3-(25)-9-2, 17
3. BRA, Robert Scheidt/ Bruno Prada, (37)-12-2-1-14, 29
4. NZL, Hamish Pepper/ Carl Williams, 12-(105/BFD)-3-2-15, 32
5. GER, Marc Pickel/ Ingo Borkowski, 5-(105/BFD)-6-18-5, 34
6. USA, Mark Mendelblatt / Mark Strube, 2-6-(32)-17-11, 36
7. SUI, Flavio Marazzi/ Enrico De Maria, 6-14-(47)-10-8, 38
8. FRA, Xavier Rohart/ Pascal Rambeau, (26)-21-1-4-20, 46
9. SWE, Fredrik Loof / Anders Ekstrom, 27-8-9-5-(49), 49
10. AUS, Iain Murray/ Andrew Palfrey, 11-11-5-24-(31), 51
Live course updates:

Tony Curphey, of Emsworth, Hampshire, sails around the world with his wife
but they travel in separate boats. When he got into trouble 700 miles
(1,127km) off the coast of New Zealand he radioed his wife Susanne
Huber-Curphey 150 miles (241km) away. He said he did not alert the local
rescue services because he did not want to become "another Tony Bullimore".

Mr Bullimore was rescued by the Australian navy five days after his yacht
capsized in the Southern Ocean during the Vendee Globe solo round-the-world
yacht race in 1997. He survived on "a little chocolate, water and sheer
determination" in an air pocket in the upturned hull of his yacht Exide
Challenger. Mrs Huber-Curphey, 47, said Australians still complained about
how much it cost to rescue Mr Bullimore and said her husband did not want to
follow in his footsteps. Mr Curphey got into difficulties when his 27ft
(8.2m) clipper, Galenaia, started taking on water in a storm. -- BBC, read

* (April 16, 2008) The Annapolis City Council has formally expressed support
for building a National Sailing Hall of Fame on City Dock, giving momentum
to the project even as preservationists have decried any plan to raze, move
or alter a historic waterfront home on the site. The resolution sponsored by
Mayor Ellen O. Moyer, a strong proponent of the estimated $20 million
museum, passed 6-3 Monday night in a symbolic gesture that could convince
the state, which owns the property, to offer a long-term lease. The state
Department of Planning is expected to make a recommendation on the issue
within 90 days. -- Baltimore Sun, read on:

* Uniquely Singapore has managed to steal line honours from Nova Scotia by
crossing the finish line at 05:16 local (12:16 GMT) Wednesday morning at the
end of Race 8 from Hawaii to Santa Cruz in the Clipper 07-08 Round the World
Yacht Race. Less than an hour later at 05:51 local (12:51 GMT), Nova Scotia
finished with the majority of the fleet expected to arrive over the next
couple of days. Clipper 07-08 is the sixth edition of the biennial Clipper
Race, and the Santa Cruz stopover marks the first time the race has visited
a port on the west coast of the United States. --

* North Sails has partnered with Sailing Weather Services to provide free
weather forecasts for Charleston Race Week from April 17-20. To sign up, log
on to North Sails' online weather center:

* OceansWatch, the newly formed Trust connecting sailors and divers with
marine conservation and humanitarian projects, needs crew for two yachts
this coming season in the Pacific region. The yachts will be heading out
from New Zealand into the Pacific during May to undertake a variety of
marine conservation projects and humanitarian aid work in Tonga, Vanuatu and
Papua New Guinea. -- Full details:

* Mathieu Richard and Claire Leory make it another French double at the top
of the ISAF World Match Race Rankings on April 16th. France has now held the
top spots in the Open and Women's simultaneously for the last five Ranking
releases. Now with her second consecutive world champion title under her
belt, Leroy's position as the #1 skipper doesn't look like changing any time
soon. The next release of the ISAF World Match Race Rankings will be on May
14th, following the ISAF Grade WC Match Race Germany. --

* Registration and the Notice and Conditions of Race for Chicago Yacht
Club's Verve Cup Offshore Regatta are now available online. The Verve - the
largest regatta in the nation during the month of August - will be held
August 15-17, 2008 out of the CYC Monroe Station. The event will attract
250-300 yachts ranging in size from 25-70 feet in length, but with the T-10
and Beneteau 36.7 North Americans held in Chicago, and the record fleet for
the 100th Running of the Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac, a huge turnout
is expected, and CYC will be limiting the number of participants. Details at

This week's video is for medicinal purposes. Lately, the buttheads have been
inundated with news about lawyering in the America's Cup, lawyering in the
US Women's Windsurfing Olympic selection, disputing of the 2012 Olympic
events, pirates seizing luxury yachts, and the Naval Academy docking their
fleet of sailboats. The Curmudgeon has taken some hits too, for a lack of
this and too much of that. After awhile, it gets to be a bit much.and you
just want to 'SHOUT.' For those that are feeling this way, we are enlisting
the services of Otis Day & The Knights and their classic scene from the toga
party in the movie 'Animal House' where they are singing the song. 'Shout'.
Click here for this week's video:

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CALENDAR OF MAJOR EVENTS (Sponsored by West Marine)
Here are a few of the events that are coming up:
Apr 17-20 - Charleston Race Week - Charleston, SC, USA
Apr 17-22 - Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta - English Harbour, Antigua, W.I.
Apr 19-20 - 8-Ball Regatta - Indianapolis, IN, USA
Apr 19-20 - Ahmanson Cup Regatta - Newport Beach, CA, USA
View all the events at

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 Barrie Harmsworth, Group I Alternate, ISAF Council: I must take issue
with Curmudgeon's comments (in Issue 2576) that infer that there is
something amiss with the ISAF Council "straying" from the recommendations of
the Events Committee. That is what Council is there for. If you look at the
composition of the Events Committee, less than 5% of its members are from
outside of a Western European influence. At least on Council, that figure is
a little over 12%. As I have oft remarked, a casual observer of the
composition of ISAF, particularly some of the committees, would struggle to
believe that it is truly "international".

* From Scott MacLeod: (re, Rick Dominique's letter on the overlap of Olympic
events) Why? $$$$$ Athletics and Swimming (and gymnastics) are three of the
highest watched Olympic sports on television. And who is the biggest
financial supporter of the Olympics? Three letters...NBC. The money
generated by those three sports in TV rights fees for the Olympics probably
pays for sailing to be in the Olympics.

* From Mack Montgomery: In Rick Dominique's letter (#2576) regarding how
other sports' events should be cut for more sailing events, Mr. Dominique
misses some facts. I am a swimmer who will be competing in the US Olympic
Trials. Nevertheless, I love sailing (I am reading the 'Butt after all).
When Mr. Dominique says that events in other sports such as swimming are
redundant, he is acting upon little to no experience.

There is a vast difference between the 50, 100, 200, 400, and 800 freestyle,
and any other events. While it is true that most swimmers attempt to swim
more than one event, it is an aberration for any swimmer to win more than
two events. Ignore Michael Phelps; he is a once in a century caliber
swimmer- think Durward Knowles, Buddy Melges, Ben Ainslie, and other Olympic
talents rolled into one. As well, additional swimming events just mean
additional travel costs when sending swimmers to the Games, and swimming
only has one trials meet; with the addition of more Olympic sailing classes,
travel costs are joined by costs of supplying and or shipping boats, and
more Trials regattas/ competitions are needed, bumping up the cost.

As well, track and swimming, despite redundancy, are some of the most
watched Olympic sports and help generate awareness for the whole movement.
While I would love to see more sailing classes as well, the events that
should be cut are those that literally no one watches - martial arts,
synchronized swimming, roller sports, bowling, etc.

* From Paul Nardone, Jr.: (re, story about tanker collision in San Francisco
in 'butt 2575) If in fact the collision did occur between the vessel and the
bridge towers because the ship's radar units were inoperable, shame on the
captain for operating his commercial vessel (which I believe is required by
law to have at least one operating radar unit) in the fog. I also believe
this information should come forth on the Coast Guard report of this
collision. If the radar unit or units were not examined, the Coast Guard
should be ashamed!!!

* From Bill Elmer: Mr Munro's comment in 2567 that "Of course, a radar would
just show the towers. . ." is not correct and will depend on the radar
antenna elevation (high on a big ship), and distance from the Bay Bridge .
When approaching a bridge, my radar shows a nice straight "shoreline" until
close enough that the bridge deck goes out of the vertical height of the
beam, which by the way is fairly high as my little Raytheon mounted aft will
pick up lower flying float planes flying above the fog layer that, when in
foggy conditions, can be quite the freak-out as the closing speed is pretty
darn high.

* From Eric A Sorensen: I liked Cory Friedman's wordy but understandable
analysis on the DoG (I like that capitalization technique a lot, in fact
that is the main point that got me to reply...) Signs of progress or at
least effort are becoming more evident as I drive past the Oracle building
site in Anacortes, WA. More containers at the backdoor and the tent is fully
up but not filled with anything yet, at least from what I could see through
the open double doors while driving at the 25 mpg posted speed. It seems
like there is more activity for this catamaran than when the monohull was
being built for AC 32, but of course there are two hulls to be made....

I am sure there are plenty of big Cats out there that money can buy and
modify. I would love to see a comment from someone who knows these things,
but is there a huge evolution in closed course Cats? I am sure that
Berterelli has his boat in the works and is just better about keeping a
secret that it is started. His team sure needs to be tuned, which he has
started by sinking that one 60' Cat. How many 90' Cats are out there? How
many racing Cats that size have ever been built? Seems new to me.

I am pumped about the upcoming race as it will show off new technologies in
multihulls and someone or something could go terribly wrong in one turn or

=> Curmudgeon's Comment: A reminder that boats competing in the America's
Cup must be built in the country of the team's club, and we are not sure how
many options the Alinghi team has for existing boats that were built in

Sometimes I think I understand everything, and then I regain consciousness.

Special thanks to Goetz Custom Boats and Ullman Sails.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at