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SCUTTLEBUTT 2592 - May 8, 2008

Scuttlebutt is a digest of major sailing news, commentary, opinions,
features and dock talk . . . with a North American focus. Scuttlebutt is
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by Tim Jeffery, Telegraph
Want an object lesson in how a governing body diminishes itself in the eyes
of those it represents? Then look no further than the twist and turns the
International Sailing Federation is making over the selection of events for
the 2012 London Games. The latest instant is whether ISAF has actually
listened to a chorus concern over the vote taken last November to cull
multihulls from the Olympics in reducing the sailing events from 11 to 10.
It's heard it, of that there is no doubt, but hearing and listening are not
the same.

On the eve of revisiting this decision, which effectively removed the
Tornado catamaran from the Games, ISAF's executive has issued its own urgent
submission ahead of the mid-year meetings in Qingdao saying that if the
Council reaffirms its vote from six months ago, the matter is done and
dusted. Just like a government, a governing body will always be the object
of dissatisfaction if it makes unpopular choices. But just as there has been
paucity of what would have been a better slate of 10 events for 2012 from
those objecting to the multihull's demise, so too has there been absence of
any sign ISAF is encouraging further discussion let alone leading it.

That November vote was contentious on several counts. The two key ones were
that the council voted against the recommendation of its own Events
Committee. And that the way in which it was taken was changed overnight
before the vote. Both now make ISAF an easy target for legitimate criticism.

Some 15 national authorities such as the RYA have subsequently made
submissions to ISAF, as have two class associations, to say 'hang-on, you've
just voted out a distinct branch of the sport by getting rid of multihulls.
Is this want you really meant to do?'. Even ISAF acknowledges the degree of
correspondence the November decision created. This weekend the ISAF Council
sits down again at its mid-year meetings, staged in the Olympic sailing
venue of Qingdao. -- Read on:

With only four days remaining until the start on The Artemis Transat on
Sunday, May 11th, there are now thirteen IMOCA Open 60’s that will join the
eleven Class40 ‘s that leave from Plymouth, England on this 2,745 mile
classic solo race to Boston, MA. On tactics for the course, uncertainty
still reigns about the approach to the banks off Newfoundland.

Indeed the solo sailors will have to pass through gates (obligatory points
of passage), a zone where ice floes represent a huge danger! Already four
years ago, the skippers set themselves a waypoint to avoid the icebergs and
growlers and for this thirteenth edition they have already been spotted to
the South of the banks of Newfoundland (41°30 North)! Before the fleet
reaches them, however, the thirteen skippers of the Imoca monohulls will
have to negotiate light conditions, a N'ly air flow and shifty winds prior
to attempting to round to the north of a fairly inactive low… No gales are
forecast but there will be a lot of work on deck and at the chart table!

One of the original aspects of this thirteenth edition of The Transat is a
36 hour black-out, which has been introduced to leave the way clear for
tactical initiative to open up the competition at a point where the weather
conditions won't be the easiest to predict. Comments 2004 winner Michel
Desjoyeaux (FRA), “The timing of the black-out period will be announced by
the Race Management shortly beforehand. It’s an interesting addition to the
proceedings, especially if the moment chosen is strategically crucial.
Nobody at sea will know the positions of their rivals unless we ourselves
broadcast our true or false… A bit like in the eighties! It’s an amusing
idea…” -- Complete report:

Amid the latest America’s Cup debate involving whether the Deed of Gift
requires a team to construct their entire boat (hull, sails, mast, hardware)
within the country they represent, or just the hull, ‘buttheads opinion has
experienced a stunning turnaround. After the first day of voting, about 40%
of the respondents felt that the Swiss could go shopping at Harken and Hall
Spars like last time, and 60% effectively said they were in deep chocolate.
However, on day two of voting, the numbers swung drastically the other way,
and at the time the polls were closed, here is the final response to the
following question: Do you believe the Deed of Gift requires the entire boat
to be constructed in the country of the club being represented, or just the
Entire boat - 30.47%
Just the hull - 69.53%

Here is how the DoG reads:
“Any organized yacht Club of a foreign country… shall always be entitled to
the right of sailing a match for this Cup with a yacht or vessel propelled
by sails only and constructed in the country to which the challenging Club
belongs, against any one yacht or vessel constructed in the country of the
Club holding the Cup. “

As for how the teams are interpreting the Deed of Gift, the Americans
believe their entire boat must be constructed within their country, while
the Swiss team declined to comment. Maybe our next poll should be whether
this issue will be brought before the NY court system. Nah… we already know
the answer to that question. --

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Valencia Sailing is back in earnest, reporting from what used to be the
world's sailing capital, during a week that is probably the busiest inside
Port America's Cup since a long time. We counted a total of 11 yachts either
sailing off Valencia's coast or docked in one of the bases, although none of
them was an America's Cup boat, in the strict sense of the word.

There are now 6 Extreme 40 yachts, 3 belonging to Alinghi, 2 to BMW Oracle
and another to Holmatro. In addition, 5 TP52 teams use the existing bases
and facilities in order to fit their yachts or train in view of the imminent
start of the Audi MedCup. The Defender of the 33rd America's Cup and the
Challenger of Record continue their daily schedule of catamaran training,
under excellent wind conditions. If only we could turn back the clock 12
months in order to enjoy the constant strong breeze of the last few weeks
during the Louis Vuitton Cup last year. -- Valencia Sailing, read on:

(May 7, 2008) - Ten members of the US Disabled Sailing Team AlphaGraphics
have landed in Qingdao, China, and are preparing for five days of racing at
the International Association For Disabled Sailing (IFDS) Qingdao
International Regatta. The U.S. has sent five of its top-ranked teams to
this May 11-15 event: in the Sonar, the Paralympic team of Rick Doerr
(Clifton, N.J.), Tim Angle (Marblehead, Mass.), and Bill Donohue (Brick,
N.J.) will race, as well as the second-ranked team led by Paul Callahan
(Providence, R.I.) with Mike Hersey (Hyannis, Mass.) and Roger Cleworth
(Lithia, Fla.) as crew. In the SKUD 18, Scott Whitman (Brick, N.J.) and
Julia Dorsett (Westchester, Penn.) will represent the United States, as the
Paralympic team of Nick Scandone (Newport Beach, Calif.) and Maureen
McKinnon-Tucker (Marblehead, Mass.) will not attend due to scheduling
conflicts. Competing in the 2.4mR are John Ruf (Pewaukee, Wis.) and Mark
LeBlanc (New Orleans, La.), ranked first and second respectively. US
Disabled Sailing Team AlphaGraphics members who sit first in the rankings
have qualified to compete in the Paralympic Games in September, also in
Qingdao, China.

Although it is not an official test event, the IFDS Qingdao International
Regatta will serve as the most realistic training the teams and the
organizers will see before the Paralympic Games in the fall. Head Coach
Betsy Alison (Newport, R.I.) says in an email from China, “There is no
substitute for practicing at the venue in preparation for the big show.”
Alison continues with an analysis of the competition: “The field of
competitors in each of the three classes will be nearly identical to the
Paralympic fleet in September. All of the top teams in each fleet are here.
Racing does not officially start until May 11, but all teams will be taking
to the water for some serious training sessions with a practice race on May
10.” -- Read on:

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: Among the US medal favorites are Nick Scandone
(2005 Rolex Yachtsman of the Year winner) and Maureen McKinnon-Tucker.
Scandone battles amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig’s
disease, a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in
the brain and the spinal cord. Each month Scandone gets weaker, and it is
believed that his absence from this event is also to minimize stress on his
body to insure that he is as healthy as possible for the Palalympic Games in

* (May 7, 2008) It is Day three at the Finn Europeans, where 83 entrants are
competing in Scarlino, Italy through May 10th. After five races, there are
two notable occurrences to mention. The first is that multiple World
Champion and Olympic medalist Ben Ainslie (GBR) is NOT winning, but is still
nearby in third. Secondly, there are two North Americans in the top five,
with Canadian Chris Cook in second (and winning today’s final race) and
American Zach Railey in fifth. Wind conditions thus far have been in the
lighter range, not having exceeded 12 knots for any of the races. Fleet
racing will continue on Thursday and Friday, with the final medal race for
the top ten to be held on Saturday. -- Event site:

* First sailed in 1970 when just 18 boats turned up, this year’s Finn World
Masters Championship is a long way from that with a staggering 280 ageing
Finn sailors pre-entered to compete at the regatta in Medemblik, Holland on
May 12-16. Starting a fleet of this size is always going to present
problems, so the organizers have planned to run a group system with two
starts. However, if all the pre-entries actually turn up, this is still 140
boats per start, which should prove some spectacle and an exciting challenge
for the competitors. The largest national fleet entered comes from the Dutch
corner, which has more than 70 boats entered, while the other large Finn
sailing nation, Germany, is fielding 64 entries. In total there are entries
from 26 different countries. --

Ullman Sails customers had an outstanding weekend at San Diego Yacht Club’s
2008 Yachting Cup with wins in four divisions. Geoff Longenecker and crew on
Melges 30 ‘Nemesis’ dominated the PHRF Division 3 with an almost perfect
score - the team finished with five bullets out of six races total. Bill and
Chris Logan on J/105 ‘Pholly’ took first place in the regatta’s largest
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* The Sperry Top-Sider National Offshore One Design (NOOD) Regatta is set to
make its Seattle debut on Puget Sound, on May 16-18, 2008. The Seattle Yacht
Club and the Corinthian Yacht Club will co-host the inaugural event for more
than 1,000 sailors and 200 boats that are expected to attend. The Seattle
NOOD Regatta marks the fourth stop of the nine-event series. --

* The Canadian Yachting Association has announced the members of the 2008
Canadian Sailing Team. Special mention goes out to Michael Leigh, in the
Laser-Men’s One-Person Dinghy, who recently won the Hyeres and the Radial
World Championships. The Tornado team of Oskar Johansson and Kevin Stittle
have also had an impressive season taking the silver medal at the 2008
Tornado Worlds in February in New Zealand. In the Finn, Chris Cook fought
hard at the 2008 Finn Gold Cup in Australia to place 6th overall, and is
presently second overall at the Finn Europeans. --

* The 56-year old Russian solo circumnavigator Fedor Konyukhov returned to
Albany, Western Australia, (7th May 2008 WST) having established a 102 day
reference mark for the Antarctica Cup Racetrack. Setting out from Albany
with his Open 85ft monohull on January 26th, Konyukhov’s pace around the
16,400 mile circuit of Antarctica will now be the benchmark for future
attempts. -- Sail World, complete report:

CALENDAR OF MAJOR EVENTS (Sponsored by West Marine)
Here are a few of the events that are coming up:
May 8-11 - Bayview International Match Race/Detroit Cup - Detroit, MI, USA
May 8-12 - Match Race Germany - Lake Constance, Langenargen, Germany
May 9-11- Snipe US Women's National Championship - Seattle, WA, 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 Michael Levesque: (RE: Tom Price’s letter in 2591 concerning college
scholarships from the CORUM Cup) Let me start by saying that I have zero
affiliation with this situation, other than to applaud it with overwhelming
enthusiasm. I’m not going to attempt to be a sociologist, but I’m really not
seeing how making the trophy of a college scholarship hurts the kids any
more than any other type of trophy. It’s not like the money is so much that
if they don’t win, they’re not going to college. If nothing else, it may be
a good thing and bring out more competition. If people are really so fired
up that saving the scholarships for the winners will create a problem,
divide the money and give it away as a "participant award..."

This whole business of “there are no winners or losers” in our recent
society only seems to make sense to the “experts.” Ask any kid who won and
who lost at any game, and they will tell you. Kids set up their own games
all day long without adults around, and you can bet that they’re keeping
score. Teaching kids how to deal with losing is probably a more important
part of being a parent than setting them up to win.

* From Ken Legler: Regarding the CORUM Cup, I hope someone tells these young
sailors in CBYRA that accepting a scholarship for college based on their
sailing results will make them ineligible for intercollegiate sailing
competition. According to ICSA Procedural Rule 12, Eligibility for Students,
e) "No student shall receive financial assistance to attend college based
upon sailing ability." If sailing scholarships were allowed in college
sailing, no Division III college that follows NCAA rules could allow those
sailors to compete. By allowing some schools to use sailing scholarships and
not others would further divide the competitive balance of college sailing.

* From Edmond Cicotte: It seems to me that the term "construct" may need to
be defined as pertaining to building an America’s Cup contender. My
dictionary states construct means "build or erect something", which leads me
to think a contending country can obtain the parts anywhere.

* From John Harwood-Bee: Regarding the debate about the AC Deed of Gift
terms, I offer the following:
1: CONSTRUCTION. Putting together, building, assembling of components.
(Middle English)
2: MANUFACTURE. The making of goods or wares from raw material by labour or
machinery. (Late Latin)

Is Alinghi in breach of the DoG? The deed specifically states that vessels
be CONSTRUCTED not MANUFACTURED in the home country of the contenders. I
argue from a modern legal standpoint that the vessels can be made from parts
sourced anywhere as long as the CONSTRUCTION of the vessel is on nation
soil. It is my considered opinion that Construction and Manufacture have two
entirely different meanings in 2008. The argument comes if a court were
asked to interpret the INTENTION of the DoG regarding the word CONSTRUCTION
100 years ago. Possibly then the intention was for all components to be
manufactured in the home country. 100 years ago this would have been
entirely reasonable with shipyards having local access to rope makers, sail
makers, forges etc. In the 21st century, I think we would be pedantic to
expect this to be adhered to.

You and your readers are well aware that I have little sympathy for the way
that Alinghi and EB have behaved over this Cup but to attempt to disqualify
them on spurious grounds would be disingenuous. If any semblance of respect
is to be retained for the AC (a difficult enough prospect anyway), perhaps
we should all use whatever persuasive powers we have left to get the damn
thing decided on the water as soon as possible.

* From Scott Finkboner: I am also saddened by the passing of Woody Brown. As
a 13 yr old junior at Hawaii YC we raced El Toro's together in the Ala Wai
in one fleet for many years with his son Billy Boy Brown. I sometimes
hitched morning rides on the Aikane's from the Ala Wai to Waikiki Beach. If
I ever was in Hawaii, I would always find Woody at the beach and get a wild
ride out into the Molokai Channel.

Once in 1980 while visiting from San Diego Woody gave just myself and 3
children and sister-in-law and her 2 kids only a memorable ride. Woody let
me steer the cat from the beach, through the reefs, out into the Molokai in
25 kts, and back through the reefs to the beach. And he refused to take any
money. He was a great person. There is a complete life story of Woody Brown
on Malcolm Gault Williams web site Legendary Surfers:

Where would we be without rhetorical questions?

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