Scuttlebutt Today
  Archived Newsletters »
  Features »
  Photos »

SCUTTLEBUTT 2620 - Wednesday, June 18, 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.

(June 17, 2008) - Today, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published
the Clean Water Act proposal in the Federal Register that will impose new
requirements on recreational boaters to learn about and follow specific
practices mandated by the federal government to operate their boats and
manage their everyday, overboard water discharges. Mandated by a court order
in 2006 that focused exclusively on commercial vessel ballast water, the
proposal includes two draft permits that are an unprecedented, new
regulation on American recreational boaters, demonstrating the urgent need
to pass the Clean Boating Act of 2008 (S. 2766 and H. R. 5949) as these new
regulations will take effect on October 1, 2008.

Along with the Federal Register notice, EPA also released two draft permits,
fact sheets and multiple additional supplementary documents, all of which
add up to a confusing mess for boaters. EPA’s Clean Water Act proposal
unnecessarily creates a cumbersome, complex and confusing permitting scheme
for recreational boaters, throwing them into a regulatory regime designed
for land-based industrial facilities like sewer treatment plants. As a
result, America’s 18 million recreational boat owners will be required to
observe a multitude of new rules and practices, yet they won’t be provided
clear information as to how to comply with these new federal requirements by
EPA, exposing them to a high degree of regulatory uncertainty, compliance
issues and legal jeopardy involving citizen lawsuits and $32,500 per
violation per day penalties.

The EPA proposal also allows individual states to implement their own
boating permits, creating the potential for mass confusion with a patchwork
of differing state-by-state laws for boaters. -- Read on:

* American Star crew Austin Sperry has landed in China for a training
session, and notes with pleasure their decision to rent the 40' Container
that was used for their boats shipment, and adapt it as a base station and a
storage locker for all of their sails, masts, booms & parts. The only
negative thing so far is how the locals are charging them 300 Yuan to launch
their Star boat and 300 Yuan to haul the boat out at the end of the day.
When 300 Yuan converts to about $43 US, and you consider they have 3 Star
boats and 2 tenders, you can see how the Chinese might be starting to
appreciate capitalism. --

* One of Israel's best Olympic medal hopes may be denied the chance to take
part at this summer's Beijing Games after it was revealed on Monday that the
A sample of a drug test taken from sailor Udi Gal had been found to be
positive. Gal, who is set to compete in the 470 Class sailing competition
with partner Gidi Kliger, is now anxiously waiting for the result of the
tests on his B sample. The 29-year-old has claimed that the test result came
out positive because of an anti-balding medication he has been taking. The
test was part of a series of random drug tests conducted on some Israeli
Olympic athletes by the Anti-Doping Committee of Israel last month. -- Read

* American Laser Radial rep Anna Tunnicliffe is finishing up a training
session in Qingdao before her upcoming ISAF Grade One regatta in Kiel,
Germany (June 25-30). She has been joined by coaches Mitch Brindley and
Luther Carpenter along with her US training partner (and husband), Brad
Funk. Among the challenges thus far has been the fog, which has pre-empted
some of their plans. Anna had initially hoped to divide the daily training
schedule into two parts, with the first being a warm-up session against
Brad, and then a second session against Tania Calles (MEX) Lisa Ross (CAN).
However, the visibility has been so low with the fog that the groups have
been unable to connect on the water, so now they all work together from the
beginning. -- Full report:


by Steve Hunt
Have you ever had trouble getting around the windward mark cleanly? This
article discusses how to handle rounding the windward mark from the left
side of the course, when approaching on the port tack layline. The specific
situation is this:

You are sailing up to the weather mark on the port tack layline and there is
an opponent on starboard tack with intentions of forcing you to tack, and
therefore pinning you from rounding. The starboard tack opponent is
controlling their speed so they can take you out as you approach the mark.
This is common in team racing with a windward-starboard-tack rounding.

What can you do to avoid being taken out? The answer is simple. Overstand
the port tack layline by a boatlength when you see this situation
developing. As you sail overstood to the weather mark, the starboard tack
opponent will converge with you at some point trying to force you to tack.
At the very last second, you should bear away hard to duck them. If you wait
until the last second, Rule 16 prevents the starboard tack boat from bearing
away at you and preventing you from keeping clear. Since you overstood the
layline after ducking, you still make the weather mark.

The key is to overstand the port tack layline, so when you duck the
starboard opponent you still make the mark. If you were to duck the
starboard boat and you are not overstood, you will not make the weather mark
after ducking. So remember, if you see that a starboard tack opponent has
you in their sites as you approach the weather mark, sail an extra
boatlength before tacking on the port tack layline and you will have a good
shot at getting around without being pinned. --

The race which champions are made…This year’s Newport to Bermuda Race is
nothing short of a true pedigree line-up. A mix of potential and proven
champions ….. The maxi Speedboat will make her debut, a yacht that on her
maiden voyage clocked 28 knots in 22 knot winds. Also debuting is IRC69
Bella Mente, and STP65 Moneypenny. And then there’s the current champions;
STP65 Rosebud – winner 2007 Sydney-Hobart, IRC66 Numbers, Blue Yankee, Rima
II and multi record-breaker Rambler. The formula these yachts all use: EC6+
carbon rigging. Find out about the science behind EC6+ carbon rigging:

Blue is normally the predominant colour when it comes to sailing, but the
colour green plays an important role this July 12-18 when the Volvo Youth
Sailing ISAF World Championship begins in Århus, Denmark.This year’s edition
of the Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship has a strong focus on
sustainable environmental practices, for which the organizing committee has
now received funding from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to carry
out (20,000 USD in addition to the 11,500 USD from Danish Yachting

When the Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship sets off on the Bay of
Århus this summer, the porpoises will be scampering about below the many
boats. This scenario should hopefully be seen for many years to come.
Sailing Aarhus, the organizers of 2008 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World
Championship has launched a number of initiatives meant not only to keep the
Bay of Århus clean, but also to make the 400 plus sailors and team leaders
from 60 different nations, volunteers and guests aware of how important it
is to protect the environment and not least the water. -- Read on:

* Among the events at the Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship is the
best-nation competition, first introduced in 1991, now known as the Volvo
Trophy. Leading the charge will be defending champions Australia, whose team
for 2008 includes four members of the victorious 2007 squad, all of whom
left Canada with individual medals as well as team success. Historically it
has been the French who have dominated the best-nation competition, winning
on no less than nine occasions, with the North American countries still
looking for their first bite of the apple.

Scores towards the Volvo Trophy standings are taken on a race-by-race basis
from the top four performers across the seven events. Top 10 race finishes
translate into points: 10 points for a first, nine for a second, all the way
down to one point for a 10th place finish. After each race is completed
across all seven events, a nation takes its four best scores and combines
them to come up with their overall Volvo Trophy score for that race. With a
potential 40 points up for grabs, the standings can alter rapidly from one
race to another, making the battle for the trophy one of the most exciting
and keenly fought contests of the championship.

Two legendary boats -- the America's Cup catamaran Stars and Stripes; and
Windquest, the fastest monohull on the Great Lakes -- will be the stars of
this year's 214-mile Port Huron-to-Mackinac Race on July 12. Windquest was
leased with an option to buy by David, Bobby and Mark Schostak for dad Jerry
Schostak's 75th birthday, and about half the crew will be family. The family
has owned a series of boats named Fujimo, and Windquest has been renamed as
the latest Fujimo. At 86 feet -- 96 feet overall with the bowsprit -- it's
the longest boat in the fleet. "It could get there anywhere between 19 and
24 hours," crew chief Wally Cross said.

Stars and Stripes, the catamaran that won the 1988 America's Cup race, is
owned by Donald Wilson of Chicago. The crew's goal is to get to the Pink
Pony, the sailors' favorite Mackinac Island bar, before last call on
Saturday night. -- Detroit Free Press, read on:

It is pretty standard stuff for kids to have godparents, but did we miss the
memo about boats having them? Maybe there is something in the Volvo Ocean
Race sailing instructions that each entry must designate a godmother, as the
last two launchings have had them. First it was the splashy Hollywood style
launching of the PUMA team’s VO 70 - named ‘il mostro’( aka The Monster) -
with goddess Salma Hayek as the boat’s godmother. Now Team Russia christened
its boat Kosatka, (Russian for Orca, Killer Whale), and have designated
Birgitta Westerberg, co-founder of the Solntse (Sun) Foundation charity for
sick and underprivileged children in St Petersburg, as godmother to the

Does anybody know if the rules are the same for boat godmothers as they are
for person godmothers? -- Scuttleblog, post comments here:

Or design sails? Doyle Sailmakers is seeking permanent full time sailmakers
and a sail designer at their Salem, MA headquarters. Sewing skills are
helpful but not required for the sailmaking position. Background in
engineering required for the sail design position. Will provide training.
Email resume to

* RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd. has presented its first annual Bill Riker
Scholarship for Young Sailors award, in partnership with the Bermuda Sloop
Foundation, to 14-year-old students Kristen Greene and Courtney Dublin, both
of the Berkeley Institute. RenRe set up the scholarship with the Bermuda
Sloop Foundation to mark Bill Riker's retirement this year from the
positions of president and chief underwriting officer. The scholarship,
which reflects Mr. Riker's love of sailing and his contributions to
Bermuda's community, has been established to encourage deserving Bermudian
students to experience sailing and thus enhance their teamwork,
self-confidence and leadership skills. -- Read on:

* Boston Whaler Inc. filed notice with the state Agency for Workforce
Innovation that it will furlough 250 employees between the end of June and
the end of July. The 250 workers involved amounts to half of the
Edgewater-based plant's workforce. The company expects to recall all the
workers, although they may be off work long enough to become eligible for
unemployment benefits, says a company spokesman. Boston Whaler is owned by
Lake Forest, Ill.-based Brunswick Corp. -- Read on:

* Whether one is new to sailing or looking to sharpen racing starts or
navigation skills, the inaugural Women's Sailing Conference kicks off at the
Port Townsend Yacht Club in Port Townsend, WA on Saturday, August 2. The
conference, sponsored by BoatU.S., is one of three regional events held for
women sailors, with others held annually in Marblehead, MA and Marina del
Rey, CA. The all-day sailing workshops specifically for women are organized
by the National Women's Sailing Association. --

* The early online entry deadline for the Rolex US-IRC National Championship
is June 20th, with only 8 slots remaining in Division 1 IRC where the battle
for the championship will ensue. The division is limited to 50 entries. Late
entries will be accepted through Friday, July 18, 2008, with the event to be
hosted by Little Traverse Yacht Club's (LTYC) on July 25-27. --

In case you missed the announcement, the US SAILING Board of Directors voted
last Monday to withdraw a proposal that would require US SAILING membership
of American racing sailors. This has been hotly debated since March, with a
reoccurring comment ringing loudest: ‘we should support our national sailing
authority… but just don’t make us.’

The word “should” is the focus here, as it was in the Scuttlebutt poll last
week. US SAILING President Jim Capron uses the word in his statement
following the BOD decision: "Many sailors and sailing organizations have
told us that racing sailors should be members, but that their membership
should be voluntary. “ We all should do a lot of things, many of which we
don’t think of until someone mentions them. This week the Scuttlebutt office
got calls from two charities looking for help, and we said yes not because
we would get anything from them, but because it felt like something we
should do. It would seem that sailors supporting their national authority,
U.S. or otherwise, is something they should do too.

We suspect there are those who respectfully disagree with this line of
thinking. However, for the American sailors that would like to join US
SAILING - because it is being mentioned - can do so by going to this link:

Reader commentary is encouraged, with letters to be submitted to the
Scuttlebutt editor, aka, ‘The Curmudgeon’. 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, 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 Dobbs Davis, Seahorse International Sailing: Given your recent
newsflash regarding US SAILING membership, you'll no doubt be closing the
thread on this topic soon, and I will say that I believe we should all help
support the sport through being members of the MNA. However, I will tell
those who were throwing personal attacks at Jim Capron that this is
completely unwarranted and unreasonable given the dedication he has shown
towards the sport and his duties as US SAILING President. I was with Jim
last week at the Korea Match Cup, where he was working hard as an umpire for
an event with the largest prize money ($300K) and most number of people
(350,000) of any other I've heard of, yet he left early so as to attend the
US Sailing Board meeting to resolve this issue.

Seeing all those people form queues a quarter mile long just to get a chance
to spend a few minutes down at dockside to watch the racing was inspiring -
how ironic that there are those who do this regularly will moan about
joining an organization that helps provide the structure necessary to play
this game.

* From Eric Feigel: It is good to see that US SAILING'S Board has seen the
errors of their ways and made the correct choice by dropping the requirement
that all sailors join. Good choices should be rewarded. As a result I
re-joined US SAILING after not having had a membership for the past two
years. Being a member of US SAILING is the proper thing to do (as pointed
out several times in the recent discussions).

* From Tim Chambers: You know, maybe the whole idea of mandatory membership
was a cleverly planned scheme by Jim Capron and the rest of the brain-trust
at US SAILING to get constructive feedback on ways to improve US SAILING.
Think about it - if he had said something like ‘what can US SAILING do to
improve?’ - he would have gotten maybe a handful of vague responses. BUT
when faced with the prospect of mandatory membership, LOTS of folks spoke up
with good ideas to make things better. Genius!

* From Anatole Perry: Interesting seeing the articles on Kiteboarding being
introduced.... I'm surprised none of the sailing establishments have caught
onto Kite Boating at all...Which is another discipline gaining significant
interest as it's introduced and is certainly more in line with Boat clubs
than kite boarding. I'm thinking there may be some interest from people out
there on the boats if they knew they were an option!

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: For those of advancing age, there is a video on
Anatole’s website showing sit-down kiting. Pretty neat:

I've learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually
make the right decision.

Special thanks to Southern Spars and Doyle Sailmakers.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at