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SCUTTLEBUTT 2621 - Thursday, June 19, 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 Derby Anderson, US Olympic Team Media Relations
To the average sailing enthusiast, Qingdao is known as the location of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, but the details are shrouded in a smoggy haze. As the Olympic and Paralympic Teams for Sailing make their final training trips to Qingdao, we get a glimpse of the life they lead when they travel the 7,000 miles and 12 time zones (from the East Coast) to the seaside village of Qingdao, China.

Most of the sailors on the U.S. Olympic Team for Sailing first sailed in Qingdao in 2006 at the Olympic Test Event. They had no idea what to picture the first time they headed to the Yellow Sea. Zach Railey, U.S. representative in the Finn Class from Clearwater, Florida, says, "When we heard it was a small seaside town I certainly did not expect to see nine million people-- but in China that is a small seaside town." Though the sailors have spent most of their time hanging out in their leftover 40-foot shipping containers in a parking lot near the venue, most of the team has by now had a look at the village for the 2008 Summer Games, which they all agree looks amazing.

The inside scoop on the village comes from the members of the US Disabled Sailing Team AlphaGraphics who recently traveled to China for the Qingdao International Regatta. -- Read on:

In planning for the 2008 Olympic sailing event, the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Race Management Team was faced with the formidable task of running fair races on five circles in a confined area with light winds and strong currents. They needed a way to position race marks for trapezoidal race courses quickly and accurately while making sure that any marks that needed to be relocated were not placed inside the area of adjacent racing circles or outside a strict boundary established by Chinese authorities.

ISAF hired US based for the task, and the solution they proposed was to use navigation software and DSC equipped radios on both the signal boats and the race marks. The radios on the Signal Boats would be programmed to "ping" the radios on the race marks, and those radios would then send back a radio signal that included the precise coordinates of their location. The race officers on each circle will be able to quickly determine the correct location of any mark they need to set, and then verify and log the position where the mark was placed. -- Read on:

Sailing World associate editor Tony Bessinger is aboard Ron O'Hanley's canting-keeler Cookson 50 Privateer for the Newport-Bermuda Race, and has been posting a log of his ramp up toward the start this Friday, June 20, 2008. Here is an excerpt:

* As the navigator, I have slightly more latitude when it comes to carrying gear aboard. I'll have my personal laptop, which is loaded with Nobeltec Max Pro, the latest version of Expedition, charts for the race, and all the Sailing Instructions. I'll also be carrying my Garmin Colorado 4000C handheld GPS, which I just loaded with g2 Vision BlueCharts of Bermuda and the entire East Coast of the U.S. I'll also have paper copies of the SIs, paper charts, a logbook, a few pencils and pens, weather forecasts, Gulf Stream data, and a bunch of Advil and Tums; navigator necessities.

* The weather looks a tad light for the first day or so, with SSW winds for the start. A warm eddy on top of the Stream is still slightly to the west of rhumbline, so that's where the bulk of the fleet will probably head off the starting line. As is usual this time of year, the weather off the East Coast is a mixture of large high-pressure zones and a few weak troughs of low pressure. The key will be to get south quickly, before the wind starts to die on the coast late Friday and all day Saturday. The faster boats should have no problem legging out and getting ahead of one trough, which should keep them in a 10-to-15-knot SW breeze. The slower boats may have a struggle getting out to the warm eddy quickly enough to stay in the breeze. For those boats that haven't reached the Stream by Sunday, it may get very rough, as a low is expected to develop just south of the Stream by then. -- Complete story:

=> Curmudgeon's Comment: We learned that the Swan 42 Orbit endured a hit and run accident in Newport, RI while moored off of Ida Lewis Yacht club on the eve of June 11th. Sometime between 7:00pm and 8:00am, the white-hulled Orbit was hit on the starboard side, just aft of midships, with damage sufficient to penetrate the hull just above the waterline. Orbit was preparing for the Newport-Bermuda Race, but is now undergoing repair and will be unable to participate. There is a 10,000 dollar reward being offered for information on this crime; anyone with information should call Neil Stoddard at 508-884-5055 or email Danny Nystrom:

The 2007 European Championship team 'Inmarsat Hedgehog' finished third overall last week at the J/24 Class 2008 World Championship in Cargionne, Italy. Competing with 100% Ullman Sails inventory, the Hedgehog team was in the hunt for the title heading into the last day of racing. But the Mistral arrived, canceling the regatta early. As a result, the Italian team 'Fiamma Gialla' held onto first place, claiming the 2008 championship. Ullman Sails is focused on providing the best sails and service to every single customer. For the "Fastest Sails on the Planet," contact a local loft and visit

(June 18, 2008) This past weekend the Interlake class came to Columbus, Ohio for their Hoover Stakes regatta, and "enjoyed" some of the variable conditions that central Ohio is known for in the summer months. There was a nice turn out including much of the class's usual top talent...two past National Champs were just a couple of the notables. Perhaps the real story of this regatta, and maybe the Interlake Class itself, is the strong family focus. When it was all said and done, a tight race took place between two family teams as past National Champ Steve Aspery with wife Lisa and son David took the win over Matt Fisher sailing with his daughter Amanda and son Stuart.

Not only were the Aspery and Fisher boats all family teams...but also third place Scott Savage sailing with his wife Lynn and daughter Claire, plus the finishers in 4th through 7th and 9th place all sailed with immediate family members as well. This is not unusual for the class, and is just one of the reasons this very strong Midwestern-oriented class continues to flourish. The class's devoted builder is another reason for the class's strength. Terry Kilpatrick, owner of Customflex Boats rarely misses a regatta, builds an affordable and durable boat and provides the "family touch" when it comes to providing service to the class. -- Greg Fisher, final results:

Sailing is supposed to be fun. No one likes to think about a sailboat capsizing. And, likely it won't. But it's good practice to equip your boat with an 'abandon ship' kit, anyway. This kit should be well packed and able to float should it go overboard. Many sailing experts will tell you that staying with your watercraft is the best idea when an emergency happens. But, some circumstances do call for you and your sailing crew to abandon ship. These circumstances include a sinking boat, fire or an unsafe vessel. An abandon ship kit may be one of the most important sailing accessories you carry.

Here is what this kit should contain: A hand-held VHF radio that is waterproof or packed in a waterproof case; blankets for hypothermia; a filled water bottle (check regularly to ensure freshness); a compass; supplies for fishing; basic tools and a first-aid kit. In your first-aid kit, carry these items: seasickness medication, sterile bandages and anti-bacterial soap and ointment, sunblock and directions on treating basic illness and cuts. This kit will vary according to the type of sailing you do. If you plan an offshore trip, carry more supplies including more snacks. Make sure your kit is in a floatable device -- even the best abandon ship bag is usless if it sinks before you can grab it. --

* Irish sailing champion who was caught growing 20 cannabis plants in the attic of his rented home is now awaiting his sentence on drug charges. Ronan Reddy, now 30 years old, represented Ireland as a 14 and 15 year-old in two Optimist World ('92 and '93) and one European Championships, and was on the Irish team that won the International Sailing Federation Cup. Reddy pleaded guilty to cultivation of cannabis plants and possession of cannabis resin -- with an estimated street value of 6,000 euros (9,305.77 USD) -- for sale or supply on February 7, 2007. -- Full story:

* Gowrie, Barden & Brett has expanded their One Design Insurance Program to offer 'Event Insurance' for regattas hosted in the U.S.. For US SAILING member one-design classes 30-feet and under with a current builder and a class association, U.S. and foreign competitors can insure borrowed or chartered boats for hull protection up to the value of the boat and liability limits up to $1,000,000. - Details at

* Raider, a custom S & S 48 skippered by David Ross of Annapolis, MD, finished the Annapolis to Bermuda Ocean Race on Tuesday, June 17, 2008 03-23-58 EDT (3 days, 13 hr,18 min, 58 sec), smashing the course record set by Chessie Racing in 2006 by 45 minutes. Raider's navigator is Tarry Lomax, of Annapolis. Twenty-six boats started the 752-mile race, but a broken rudder by Tom Carrico's Beneteau 40 Air Mail forced them to retire, and they have safely returned to Little Creek. The rest of the fleet is spread out to 300 nm with 10-15 kt SW winds. -- Race website:

* Geoff Becker (Annapolis, MD) won the inaugural Great Lakes International Challenge Cup, a ISAF Grade 3 Match Race Event hosted by Buffalo Yacht Club on June 13-15, 2008. Ten teams competed in J/22s, with John Loe (New Orleans, LA) coming in second with Terry McLaughlin (Toronto, ONT) in third. -- Complete report:

* US SAILING's newly formed Windsurfing Task Force has just announced new grant funding received from the United States Sailing Foundation (USSF). The Windsurfing Task Force was established at US SAILING's Spring Meeting last March to foster youth development in windsurfing with long term goals of the 2012 and 2016 Olympics. The grants will be used to organize a clinic at the East Coast Junior Windsurfing Championships (held July 17-18 at Vineyard Haven Yacht Club (MA). In addition, the grants will help to create a video to promote competitive junior windsurfing. -- Read on:

* Applications are now being accepted for the 2008 U.S. Offshore Championship, hosted September 26-28 by Columbia Yacht Club in Chicago, Ill, and to be sailed in Tartan 10s. -- Event site:

* On June 21st and 22nd, the best of the best in Caribbean racing will come together in St. Maarten to compete against each other for the 7th annual North Sails Caribbean Keelboat Championships. This event brings together some of the region's best sailors and gives them a level playing field to truly test their skills. They will be racing in a one-design fleet of identical Sun Fast 20 boats owned by Lagoon Sailboat Rentals. This event will be sailed in a 2-pool format, which will result in a final of a Gold Fleet and a Silver Fleet. --

Have you checked out JK3 Nautical Enterprises, Inc and their latest brokerage boats? We have the largest selection of used J/Boats on the market. Give our team a call and make an appointment to see these high quality listings. We currently have listed three J/120's, J/109, J/100, two J/105, along with numerous other makes and models. Our team of Jeff Brown, John Bohne, and Roy Bream look forward to speaking with you and working with you. Give us a call at 619-224-6200, or take a look at our website at

At 36, Hilary Lister suffers from a rare disorder known as reflex sympathetic dystrophy. This 'genetic blip' means she has no movement in her arms or legs. The only thing she can move is her head. She has broken records, won awards and become a figurehead for disabled people because she is a fearsome sailor. In 2005 she became the first quadriplegic to sail single-handedly across the Channel. Two years later she repeated the feat sailing round the Isle of Wight. Now, it's the British Isles.

Hilary departed Monday, June 18, 2008, sailing her Artemis 20 sailboat around the isles in legs, stopping each night in ports along the way. Her story is unique, and this video provides an insight into her world, how she manages her boat, and her thoughts on this latest quest. If you have a video you like, please send us your suggestions for next week's Video of the Week. Click here for this week's video:

CALENDAR OF MAJOR EVENTS (Sponsored by West Marine)
Here are a few of the events that are coming up:
June 16-20 - Block Island Race Week - Block Island, RI, USA
June 20-29 - WAVES - Vancouver, BC, Canada
June 21-29 - Cleveland Race Week - Cleveland, OH, USA
June 21 - Vic-Maui 2008 - Vancouver, BC, Canada
June 22 - Tahiti Race - Los Angeles, CA, USA
View all the events at

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 Bill Sandberg: While I regret the US SAILING Board's decision to withdraw the planned requirement for membership, I fully understand their need to do so. The shame of it is that they had to reverse their decision because of all the reaction from their constituents. The late Tim Russert had a saying on his wall-- "No Whining." A lot of US sailors should listen to that. US SAILING is the only game in town and they're not going away. You can either fight them or join them. Our sport will be the better for it.

Also, good for Dobbs Davis' comments in support of Jim Capron. Personal attacks on him are about as low as you can go. There is nobody in the US giving more of his time to our sport than Jim. He should be thanked every day for his hard work and dedication. Perhaps some of our whiners will want to turn their negative energy into a positive and help promote the sport we love.

* From Adam Mayers: I am doing some research for a book called Unfinished Business, which is the story of the life and times of Harry Mitchell, a 70-year-old Briton who died in the 1994 BOC singlehanded around the world race. I have tried, without success, to locate Minoro Saito who was nearby when Harry disappeared, Floyd Romack who also sailed in the race, and Pete Dunning who worked for the race and kept tabs on the fleet by phone, fax and email. I believe Pete moved from Newport, R.I., to Providence some time ago and Floyd left New Jersey for Florida. Any help from your readers would be appreciated. I can be reached at

* From Jeffrey Orlin: (re, story in #2620 about EPA permitting for recreational boaters) While the current system is preferable, there is quite a bit of over dramatization with regards to what will really happen if Congress does not act to exempt recreational boaters. The background is that the courts have ruled that the EPA's long standing practice of exempting recreational boaters from the requirement to have a discharge permit is illegal. To avoid having every recreational boater submit an application for a discharge permit, the EPA is trying to develop two group permits for these classes. The permits described allowed discharges such as water from a "properly functioning" outboard engine which otherwise would not be allowed under the Clean Waters Act. The idea behind the permit is that they allow the things which normally occur on recreational boats. The proposed permit and an accompanying fact sheet from the EPA can be found here It is fairly readable although some sections get a bit dense.

* From J. Bee Bednar: Here are some interesting shots of the Cape Fear 38 that lost its keel on June 6th during the Regatta de Amigos from Galveston TX to Veracruz MX, where after the crew was thrown into the water, and one of them, safety officer Roger Stone, drowned while getting two student sailors to safety. The five survivors floated in the Gulf of Mexico for 26 hours before being rescued by the Coast Guard. Here are links to three images:

I've learned that wherever I go, the world's worst drivers have followed me there.

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