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SCUTTLEBUTT 2635 - Thursday, July 10, 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.

Thomas Coville crossed the official start line for the single-handed North
Atlantic record attempt today, Wednesday 9th July at 0747 hours local time,
or 1147 UT (subject to confirmation from the WSSRC). The 105-foot maxi
trimaran set off in a 16 knot SW’ly air flow which is set to fill rapidly to
around twenty knots. The maxi trimaran Sodeb'O left Brooklyn Harbour
yesterday, Tuesday, shortly before 1800 hours (local NY time). In order to
avoid putting in some tacks, Sodeb’O remained under tow the whole night.
Aboard, a crew of five people kept watch to enable Thomas to sleep and
concentrate as he awaited the green light from his routers.

To beat the record set by Francis Joyon in 2005, Thomas will have to cross
the Atlantic at a hellish pace of less than 6 days, 4 hours, 1 minute and 37
seconds. “Maintaining the speed of the maxi Sodeb’O at an average of over
19.75 knots for 2,980 miles for nearly 6 days remains an achievable
performance” commented the skipper, who is the 24 hour speed record holder
aboard his maxi Sodeb’O, having covered 619.3 miles at an average of 25.8
knots. -- Read on:

Weymouth, UK (July 9, 2008) - Excessive winds with gusts over 30 knots at
the CST Composites 2008 Moth World Championships cancelled racing for the
fourth consecutive day, leaving the 99 entrants wondering if the event will
begin before it must end. Originally scheduled to have a qualifying series
to divide the fleet into manageable groups, the sailing instructions have
now been amended for racing to commence as one group. The forecast for
Thursday’s weather is for kinder conditions of under 20 knots, with the aim
for at least 4 races, and as many as possible on Friday, the last day of the
event. -- Worlds website:

The big news of the day was the four hour International Moth Class
Association Annual General Meeting. With 18 nations represented at the
Worlds, the room took the time to vote on which options would be in the best
interest for the next three year's Moth World Championships. They are:

2009 - The Gorge, Portland, OR, USA - August 5-14.
2010 - Dubai, UAE - April.
2011 - Lake Macquarie, Australia - January.

There was some sailing today, as sailors got the chance to take to the water
in an effort to try to claim the $1000 prize for highest speed at the
Velocitek Speed Challenge. Conditions at the Weymouth and Portland National
Sailing Academy in the UK were almost perfect for speed trials with flat
water and winds from the South West at 20 knots gusting to 25. At 4:30 PM
sailors left the harbor with two hours to log their top speeds on Velocitek
devices. Sailors reported being on the edge of control while attempting to
log their top speed over an average of 10 seconds. In the end the three
fastest sailors proved to be: Arnaud Psarofaghis (SUI 3252) at 26.1kts who
wins this edition of the Velocitek Speed Challenge and the top prize of
$1000, then came James Owen-Smith (AUS 9354) at 25.9kts, and Bora Gulari
(USA 3281) at 25.5kts. -- Full results:

The Pacific Cup race organizers announced the final starting lineup, with a
total 61 boats competing in the 2070-mile biennial race from San Francisco
to Hawaii. Twenty-two boats, including two double-handed divisions are set
to begin the race early afternoon Monday, July 14, with additional starts
for faster boats through Saturday, July 19.

Most racers anticipate arrival at Oahu’s Kaneohe Bay around July 26-29, with
that date range varying by several days on either side depending on weather,
course selection, and boathandling. Saturday’s start, Division F, consists
of the fastest boats skippered by dedicated and aggressive racers. Philippe
Kahn on Pegasus (OP-50) hopes to best the record for fastest doublehanded
passage now held by Stan Honey for his passage on the 70-foot Mongoose. --
Complete story:

* Among the participants in this year’s race is professional sailor Paul
Cayard, who bought a Santa Cruz 50, signed on a youthful crew that includes
his two kids, and is now in the midst of their a two day offshore training
sail. Here is an onboard report:
"The Hula Girl, a Santa Cruz 50, untied her lines yesterday afternoon (on
July 8th) at 1600 local time with 8 crew onboard. Destination unknown,
pretty much wherever the wind would take us. In our case we have been very
lucky. Amazingly, the wind has been very light, 5-8 knots from the South.
Currently (1000 local) we are running, yes running in a Northwesterly
direction off the coast of San Francisco. As I said, very unusual." -- Read

Ullman Sails customers had big finishes at Long Beach Race Week, June 27-29,
with two boats sealing top honors in the 2008 Ullman Sails Inshore
Championships. Congratulations to Fast 50+ winner Alec Oberschmidt and team
on R/P 50 “Staghound”; and Dr. Laura Schlessigner and team on J/100
“Perfect” who won the Sport/Sprit Boat division. “Staghound” competed with
100% Ullman inventory throughout the USIC series. Long Beach Race Week,
presented by Acura and sponsored by Ullman Sails, hosted three days of races
with up to 20 knots of breeze over the weekend. For more information, visit
Ullman Sails at

The selection is complete and the final stages of preparation are well
underway. Each team has a viable pathway planned to the final show, some
focused on race practice as their means to the end, while others mix
training and competition; some in Qingdao and others relying on home
cooking. One thing is for sure when Team Canada launches for the first race
day on August 9th, there will be some high expectations and many interested
bystanders. The 2008 Canadian Olympic Sailing Team is amongst the most
talented ever assembled. No there is not a dominant veteran, multi-medal
Olympian amongst us, but what we do have is depth, proven performance and a
lot of character. Introducing Canada’s Olympic Sailing Team:

Finn: Chris Cook - Toronto, ON,
Laser: Mike Leigh - Vancouver, BC
Tornado: Oskar Johansson/ Kevin Stittle - Toronto and Orangeville, ON
49er: Gordon Cook/Ben Remocker - Toronto and Vancouver
Laser Radial: Lisa Ross - Halifax, NS
RSX Men: Zac Plavsic - Vancouver, BC
RSX Women: Nikola Girke - Vancouver, BC
Men’s 470: Stephane Locas/Oliver Bone - Montreal/ Beaconsfield, QC
Yngling: Jen Provan/Martha Henderson/Katie Abbott - Toronto and Sarnia, ON

Why is Canada high on this team? Here’s a quick re-cap:

* Additionally, the 2008 Canadian Paralympic Sailing Team will be amongst
the strongest teams Canada has sent to the Games, arguably the strongest.
Led by Brian Todd as Team Leader this team has some top shelf talent and
gritty performers. -- Read on

Newport, RI, USA -- Though the current America's Cup competition is in legal
disarray and sailing syndicates associated with it are quickly unraveling,
America's Cup Charters in Newport, Rhode Island (USA), is managing the
largest fleet of 12 Meters in the world and celebrating a half century of 12
Meter Class racing. The company has expanded by adding Easterner (US-18) and
Enterprise (US-27) to its already overwhelmingly impressive fleet of
thoroughbred 12 Meters, which includes Weatherly (US-17), Nefertiti (US-19),
American Eagle (US-21), Intrepid (US-22) and Freedom (US-30). To America's
Cup enthusiasts, these names (and sail numbers by which they are readily
identified on the water) are synonymous with the Cup's finer days, when real
men battled on the water, not in the court room, and real boats were of the
awe-inspiring lines that have famously silhouetted themselves against the
Newport skyline since 1958 when the 12 Meters made their debut in Cup
competition. -- Read on:

* The World Sailing Speed Record Council has announced the ratification of a
new World Record for sailing around Ireland (with powered sails - WSSR rule
21c). On June 22-25, 2008 skipper Chris Sherlock (GBR) onboard the 30m
monohull Leopard covered the 708nm distance in 2 days 17 hours 48 minutes 47
seconds for an average speed of 10.77 knots. There has been no previous
record for this course in the 21c category. Times taken for the record were
during the Round Ireland race. --

* After five days of racing in Gdansk, Poland, the 2008 FISU World
University Match Racing Championships saw teams from New Zealand earn both
the gold and silver medals, with the bronze position going to American
skipper John Loe and his team of Val Smith, Teddy Hale, and Baker Potts. The
World University Match Racing Championships are held every two years, with
the 2010 event to be held in Greece. --

* (July 9, 2008) All four entrants have completed the 3,571 nm the first
Tahiti Race in 14 years, with Fortaleza, a Santa Cruz 50 that was the
smallest boat in the fleet, closing the contest Wednesday morning when it
crossed the finish line offshore from the Pointe Venus lighthouse near
Papeete at 4:36 a.m. PDT (1:36 a.m. local time). Doug Baker's Magnitude 80
claimed a new record---11 days 10 hours 13 minutes 18 seconds---and Tahiti
Yacht Club officials dusted off the Fritz Overton Perpetual Trophy for first
to finish, while Chris Welsh's ageless Ragtime corrected out for first place
overall on time-on-time handicap ratings. – Final report:

* (July 9, 2008) A field of 64 teams represent a record number 12 countries
at the Tutima 2008 J/80 World Championship in Kiel, Germany, where the first
day of racing was marked by heavy rain showers and varied wind strengths for
the four races. . The courses were dominated by the crews from Spain, at the
end Ignacio Camino Rodriguez (ESP) and his crew took the lead in front of
Javier Padron (ESP). American Jeff Johnstone is presently in fifth overall.
Racing continues through Saturday. Event website:

* Malcesine, Italy (July 9, 2008) - The nine RC 44’s involved in the RC 44
Malcesine SLAM Cup completed 6 flights in ideal conditions. Cameron
Appleton’s Team Aqua shares the lead with Sébastien Col’s Hiroshi – Città di
Milano. James Spithill’s Team Ceeref is only one point away whilst Dean
Barker’s Banco Espirito Santo and Larry Ellison’s BMW ORACLE Racing are two
points behind with three more flights to complete. -- Complete report:

* After last week’s World Match Racing Tour event in Marstrand at Match Cup
Sweden, the race for points towards the World Championship has tightened on
the leaderboard. After four stages completed, Ian Williams (GBR) and his
Team Pindar remains in the lead, but that lead has shrunk by half as new
teams have arisen through the ranks to challenge the Tour regulars. Five
events remain on the 2008 tour, with the next being Troia Portugal Match Cup
in Troia, Portugal on July 15-20, 2008. -- Complete story:

* Newport, RI - Light breeze challenged racers at the Robert H. Tiedemann
Regatta sponsored by Panerai, a two-day regatta that celebrated the memory
of a man who cut a monumental profile in the world of classic boats. But if
the support at this event—in terms of the number of participants, the number
of fans who watched on land and on water, and the sponsors and sailors who
share Bob Tiedemann's dedication to classic boats—could be rated by the same
Beaufort scale that measures wind strength, the ranking would be gale force.
-- Read on:

* Long Beach, CA –The local waters will be host Thursday through Saturday,
July 10-12 to the world’s top women match racers when St. Mary Medical
Center presents the fourth annual Mayor’s Cup hosted by Long Beach Yacht
Club. Eight skippers from around the world will compete in identically
prepared Catalina 37s in this International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Grade
2 event. Among the entrants is San Francisco Yacht Club’s Liz Baylis, who
will be back to defend her 2007 Mayor’s Cup win and is currently ranked
fifth in ISAF Women’s rankings. -- Complete story:

Harken outfits more than just TP52s and AC yachts - our hardware puts
weekend warriors ahead of the pack too. Congratulations to Harken’s own
Charlotte Taylor who captured the overall win in the 70th Queen’s Cup with
her 1987 Ericson 34 Rocinante. To complement the teak interior, Charlotte
recently upgraded her cruiser with a new Harken MKIV furler, a Battcar
system, and a CB mainsheet traveler. With easy-to-use sail controls, she,
her husband Chris, and a few friends beat 142 finishers in the race from
Milwaukee, WI to Grand Haven, MI. Upgrade your boat like Charlotte did at

Ben Ainslie is Britain’s most successful Olympic sailor together with 1960's
Olympian Rodney Pattison. In 2008, Ben will endeavor to win his third
successive Olympic gold, and fourth Olympic medal in Beijing. He will be
just 31 years old. He is a five-time World Champion in the Finn, so who
better than Ben to provide us with a tour of this Olympic dinghy, describing
the gear used and demonstrating the sailing style needed to compete in the

Also, 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:

The Olin Stephens designed International Lightning Class held their 70th
Anniversary Regatta during the 4th of July weekend at the home of Fleet #1,
Skaneateles Country Club, in the beautiful Finger Lakes region of central
New York State over a nearly perfect mid-summer weekend. 125 boats competed,
from boat #2, up through new 15300 generation boats.

However, the essence of this story is not about the regatta – the regatta
was just an excuse for 125 boats to come together to celebrate the reasons
the class remains strong and viable. There wasn’t much tie-dye in evidence,
but there was a lot of peace and love – and a ton of fun. The Village of
Skaneateles is celebrating its 150th Anniversary, and is about as nice a
little town as you can find anywhere, with waterfront homes that range from
nice weekend farm cottages to Newportesque “Cottages”. – Read on:

by John Rousmaniere
Because some events are too special to do every time, I’ve sailed only eight
Newport Bermuda Races over the past 42 years, beginning in 1966. It has been
my good fortune to be in three prize winners, and two of them second-place
boats. In the reaching race in 1980, we in Dave Noyes’ 37-foot yawl Elixir
were runner-up to Rich Wilson’s great passagemaker Holger Danske. This year
I was a watch captain for Sheila McCurdy in her family’s 38-foot sloop
Selkie, and after four days plus a few hours of very wet beating more than
650 miles from Newport to St. David’s Head, we ended up with only one of the
122 other boats ahead of us in the corrected standings-Sinn Fein, Peter
Rebovich’s Cal 40.

Over all the time that I have occasionally raced to Bermuda, many of my
peers have sailed in twice that number of races, but have never been invited
to the prize ceremony at Government House, with its spectacular hilltop view
of the archipelago of coral and cedar and small white houses. But I am lucky
not only in the silverware department. As everybody knows (or at least
should know) trophy-collecting is only one tick on the list of life’s
satisfactions. In these two races and a few others, I was shipmates with
lifelong friends from my sailing home - the place where I learned how to
sail and love boats - Cold Spring Harbor, on Long Island, New York. My first
offshore watch captain, in 1966, was Jim McCurdy, who lived near our little
beach club and who taught me something, quietly encouraged me in his Scots
way, and made me laugh a lot. -- Read on:

While the Newport Bermuda Race was a fairly benign ride, the delivery back
to the states has been anything but. There were two separate rescues
reported earlier this week in Issue 2632, and here is a third from the J/120
AVRA, as reported by owner George Petrides in a letter he wrote to the Coast

“I want to thank you for your and your people's critical participation in
the successful rescue operation from AVRA on the morning of July 2nd about
240 miles south of Cape Cod. The rescue operation was flawless and it was
because of your people's exceptional performance. On July 1st, one of the
Newport-Bermuda return crew, a 66 year old woman, lost her footing and fell
backwards into a lifeline, scraping the back of her head and so separating a
"flap" of skin from her scalp...bleeding was substantial.” – Read on:

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: The above letter is posted in the Scuttlebutt
Forum, where we encourage anyone else to post their delivery stories.

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.

-- To submit a Letter:
-- To post on the Forum:

* From Gary E. Benner: (re, Chi-Mac story in #2634) Starting on July 19,
2008 (the same day as the Chicago – Mac) is the 19th running of the ACTUAL
longest annual freshwater race in the world. The Lake Ontario 300 is 308
nautical miles on the spinnaker course versus 289 nautical miles for the
Chicago –Mac. (There is also a 300 kilometre white sail course.)
Fully-crewed and double-handed fleets compete. The Lake Ontario 300 course
is a circumnavigation of Lake Ontario through both Canadian and US waters.
This is a growing international race with registrations already at a record
120 boats and rising. All boats will be equipped with transponders supplied
by FIS Tracking. So, if you can’t get into the Chicago-Mac, or want to try a
new challenge, check out the Lake Ontario 300 at

* From Doug Mills: I just read your item on the current move for massive
offshore oil drilling (in ‘Butt 2634). Maybe there are those still around
Newport Beach, CA who remember a strong willed woman by the name of Goldie
Joseph, who raced her wooden sloop "Bonita" out of our harbor for many
years. The entire topsides were painted a most ugly bright turquoise. It may
be that Bud Desenburg purchased paint from the same bargain sale to cover
his Lapworth 36 "Mistral".

Goldie used to publish articles in our local paper, The Daily Pilot, which
advocated large increases in old drilling off the Southern California coast.
Her reason for wanting this to be done was very simple. She felt we needed
more offshore racing marks in water too deep for Race Committees to set
inflatable marks. Where have all such wonderful people gone, in this age of
corporate thinking?

I've learned that 99% of the time when something isn't working in my house,
one of the kids did it.

Special thanks to Ullman Sails and Harken Yacht Equipment.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at