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SCUTTLEBUTT 2658 - Tuesday, August 12, 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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Until the closing ceremonies signify the end of the 2008 Olympic Games, the
story at the sailing events will be the winds (light) and currents (strong).
However, as noted by Charley Cook, the principal race officer for the 2008
Qingdao Olympics, the conditions on Monday were a pleasant surprise. “The
high priced weather guessers were wrong today,” noted Cook. “They predicted
light winds; their forecasts gave us some concern that we might not be able
to run the RS:X races. The lower wind threshold for them is 6 knots - 4
knots for all other classes. We even had so much wind (approx 10 knots) that
Team Charlie (the PRO is Nino Shmueli from ISR) started the Men's 470 class
with the "O" flag - meaning that Rule 42 was turned off.”

The RS:X Men and Women began their events today, and they put on a show that
Past ISAF President Paul Henderson frequently refers to as “Air Rowing.”
Struggling in the 8 knot winds was American Nancy Rios, who admitted that
she “had big problems with (her) pumping technique upwind.” Among the other
teams struggling with the conditions were American 49er team Tim Wadlow and
Chris Rast. “We've had a ton of great starts, followed by an amazing ability
to pick the unfavored side of the course,” said Tim. “We've then often found
ourselves midfleet at the top mark and errors from there have lead to a
couple of poor races.”

While it is not possible to win the Olympics in the early part of the event,
some of the teams are beginning to dig a hole that they may not recover
from. Additionally, making a comeback will become significantly harder if
each event does not complete their full race schedule. So far, each class is
on track, but there are no promises that sufficient winds will remain. In
fact, the forecast for Tuesday looks to be shaky at best (see forecast
> ISAF report:
> US report:
> Canadian report:

Current Results:
Finn (26 entrants)
1. GBR, Ben Ainslie, (10)-1-4-1-1-10, 17
2. USA, Zach Railey, 2-5-2-2-7-(8), 18
3. FRA, Guillaume Florent, 5-8-(20)-3-4-6, 26
4. CAN, Christopher Cook, 8-3-7-10-(23)-5, 33
5. SLO, Gasper Vincec, 9-11-6-5-3-(13), 34

Yngling (15 entrants)
1. GBR, Sarah Ayton/Sarah Webb/Pippa Wilson, 2-3-4-(7)-4-2, 15
2. NED, Mandy Mulder/Annemieke Bes/Merel Witteveen, 9-1-2-(13)-1-5, 18
3. AUS, Krystal Weir/Karyn Gojnich/Angela Farrell, 1-11-6-(12)-7-7, 32
4. USA, Sally Barkow/Carolyn Howe/Deborah Capozzi, (14)-2-8-5-6-11, 32
5. FIN, Silja Lehtinen/Maria Klemetz/Livia Väresmaa, 6-6-3-8-10-(16/OCS), 33
12. CAN, Jennifer Provan/Martha Henderson/Katie Abbott, 5-4-10-(15)-9-12,40

49er (19 entrants)
1. AUS, Nathan Outteridge/Ben Austin, (DSQ/20)-1-7-3-1-1, 13
2. DEN, Jonas Warrer/Martin Kirketerp Ibsen, 2-4-(10)-4-2-3, 15
3. ITA, Pietro Sibello/Gianfranco Sibello, 3-(9)-1-1-6-9, 20
4. GER, Jan-Peter Peckolt/Hannes Peckolt, (15)-6-11-6-3-2, 28
5. ESP, Iker Martinez de Lizarduy/ Gaztańaga, 1-10-17-2-(20/OCS)-5, 35
12. CAN, Gordon Cook/Ben Remocker, (13)-12-13-10-7-6, 48
13. USA, Tim Wadlow/Christopher Rast, 5-14-15-(16)-5-10, 49

470 Men (29 entrants)
1. FRA, Nicolas Charbonnier/Olivier Bausset, 6-3, 9
2. ESP, Barreiros Onan/Aaron Sarmiento, 8-2, 10
3. POR, Ălvaro Marinho/Miguel Nunes, 2-8, 10
4. AUS, Nathan Wilmot/Malcolm Page, 4-7, 11
5. SLO, Karlo Hmeljak/Mitja Nevecny, 3-11, 14
20. USA, Stuart McNay/Graham Biehl, 26-12, 38
28. CAN, Stéphane Locas/Oliver Bone, 25-25, 50

470 Women (19 entrants)
1. NED, Marcelien De Koning/Lobke Berkhout, 3-1, 4
2. AUS, Elise Rechichi/Tessa Parkinson, 2-2, 4
3. ESP, Natalia Via-Dufresne/Laia Tutzó, 4-5, 9
4. CZE, Lenka Smidova/Lenka Mrzilkova, 6-4, 10
5. FRA, Ingrid Petitjean/Gwendolyn Lemaitre, 1-11, 12
15. USA, Amanda Clark/Sarah Mergenthaler, 14-12, 26

RS:X Men (35 entrants)
1. ISR, Shahar Zubari, 1-3, 4
2. HKG, King Yin Chan, 5-4, 9
3. CHN, Aichen Wang, 2-8, 10
4. NZL, Tom Ashley, 4-7, 11
5. GRE, Nikolas Kaklamanakis, 10-2, 12
22. USA, Ben Barger, 21-22, 43
24. CAN, Zachary Plavsic, 23-25, 48

RS:X Women (27 entrants)
1. CHN, Jian Yin, 1-1, 2
2. AUS, Jessica Crisp, 2-4, 6
3. GBR, Bryony Shaw, 4-3, 7
4. ITA, Alessandra Sensini, 6-2, 8
5. ESP, Marina Alabau, 3-5, 8
12. CAN, Nikola Girke, 11-14, 25
23. MEX, Demita Vega, 23-21, 44
26. USA, Nancy Rios, 25-24, 49
Complete results:

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Here are the countries that currently have entrants on the podium:
Australia - 4
Great Britain - 3
China - 2
France - 2
Netherlands - 2
Spain - 2
Denmark - 1
Hong Kong - 1
Israel - 1
Italy - 1
Portugal - 1
United States - 1

Among the notable performances so far have come from the Australian team,
which was completely shut out of the medals in 2004. Here are some links
from the 2004 Olympic Games:
> Medal Count:
> Photos:

What do the 18 stars signify in the burgee of Ida Lewis Yacht Club, located
in Newport, RI? (Answer below)

* RACE SCHEDULE: Tuesday will have the following classes racing: Laser and
Laser Radial (Course A), RS:X Men and Women (Course B), and 470 Men and Women
(Course D). The 49er, Finn, and Yngling will have a rest day, while the Star
and Tornado remain the last events to start on August 15th. Two races per day
are scheduled for each event, except for the 49er class, for which three races
per day are scheduled. The scheduled time of the warning signal for the
first race each day is 1300. Eleven races are scheduled for each event
except for the 49er class, for which 16 races are scheduled. Of the 11 (16)
races, 10 (15) are scheduled as opening races and one as a medal race. When
five or more opening races have been completed, a boat’s series score will
be the total of her race scores excluding her worst score. However, the score
from the medal race will not be excluded. -- Notice of Race:

* WEATHER FORECAST - Qingdao Olympic Venue: For Tuesday, August 12, the
models are showing wind strength to be 8 knots or less, with the Global
Forecast System/ NOAA information showing significantly lighter winds for
most of the day. Wind direction from ESE. An archive of the maps/graphs from
each day are at - to
get the animated hour by hour forecast map images, sign up for free
worldwide forecasts at

* RACE WATCHING: The Laser and Laser Radial will be the media darlings for
Tuesday when they begin their competition on Course A, which is the course
used for television and online coverage. For the US audience, look for Gary
Jobson to join the NBC production team beginning with Wednesday’s races,
adding his commentary to the live shows through to the end of the series. He
will also be editing a 5-6 minute daily highlight, which he hopes to have
available by 7am ET.
> U.S viewing schedule:
> Canadian viewing schedule:

* SCARY SCIENCE: Beijing fired over 1,000 rain dispersal rockets on Friday
evening to blow away rain clouds for the smooth opening ceremony of the 29th
Olympic Games at the National Stadium. It was the largest rain dispersal
operation in China, and the first time that such technology has been used to
ensure the weather condition for Olympic opening, said Chinese
meteorologists. As the artificial rain dispersal efforts kept the rain away
from the ceremony, neighboring areas such as Baoding City of Hebei Province,
to the southwest of Beijing received the biggest rainfall of 100 millimeters
Friday night, and Beijing's Fangshan District recorded a rainfall of 25
millimeters. --

* CAMERA CONSIDERATIONS: Last year's 49er World Champions from Britain,
Stevie Morrison and Ben Rhodes, plummeted from overnight leaders to lie in
9th place overall, no thanks to scores of 14,15, 15. Among the problems on
the second day occurred when their mainsheet bridle snapped after they
realized it had been slowly chafing on the camera mount that sits on the
rudder gantry of their boat. -- SailJuice,

* ALGAE UPDATE: The dawn boat patrols off the coast of this Chinese port
were searching for one very specific threat to Olympic sailing events:
Bright green algae. In June and July a vast algae bloom clogged about 30
percent of the sailing area. Chinese Olympic organizers spared no effort it
clearing it away, calling out thousands of troops and volunteers to pick it
up from as many as 1,500 boats and along the shore.

Having won the battle, they are now determined to win the "algae war," with
an armada of 300 fishing trawlers and 1,500 fishermen working off the coast
to haul up as much as possible before it reaches the racing venue,
organizers said. Qingdao organizers said that twice a day, at 5 a.m. and at
10 a.m., they send four boats out to check for algae and keep it at bay.
Zhao said the committee guarantees that the nontoxic algae will be cleaned
up each day before racing starts in the early afternoon. -- Complete story:

If you can't travel to China to watch our Olympic hopefuls, show your spirit
by getting a Beijing 2008 t-shirt from North Sails Gear (available in either
men's or ladies styles) before August 15 and we'll include a North Sails
leather luggage tag with your order. Write the words 'Free Tag' in the
comments box during checkout to redeem this offer. When style and
performance matter, head North:

It promised to be a glorious send-off for the Rodney March-designed
catamaran after 32 years as an Olympic class. But the Code 0 sail
development has caused a deep rift in the class setting luminaries such as
Roman Hagara (AUT), Mitch Booth (NED) and Charlie Ogletree (USA) against
each other. A series of recent practice races in Qingdao have shown that the
two crews leading the development, Mitch Booth’s and the Ogletree/Lovell
combination, have a marked speed advantage in light winds. So unsettling has
this been that the Aussies Darren Bundock and Glenn Ashby are amongst
several crews to have rushed into the building their own copies of the Code

This is where the dispute starts to get messy as Hagara has accused Ogletree
of acting in his own interest and not that of the class. Ogletree is
chairman of the class technical committee, on which Howden also sits as does
Hagara’s long-standing crew Hans Peter Steinacher. “Charlie is the president
of the technical committee of the class and if he finds some holes in the
rules that are maybe causing some problems, which allow things to happen
like now, then he should stand up and say ‘there is something wrong, we have
to do something,” said Hagara yesterday. “It’s not really fair from him. I
don’t want really to race against a different boat.” – The Daily Sail
(subscription site), complete story:

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: Apparently the Code 0 gennaker is not a new idea,
but since Olympics have lowered the permissible minimum wind strength from
the class rule of 6 knots to 4 knots, it widened the range for this light
air specialty sail. Since the class rules only have maximum dimensions for
the sail, and do not state that the gennaker is a downwind sail, the smaller
Code 0 is successfully used both upwind and downwind in light winds (Lovell
says under 9 knots; Booth says up to 11 knots). The risk is that each team
can measure only one gennaker.

Cowes Week, the world's oldest and largest sailing regatta, last week
hosting 37 classes with a total of 976 entrants, has failed to find a new
sponsor as companies cut spending, potentially leaving the event without
corporate backing for the first time in 15 years. The racing series around
the Isle of Wight off England's south coast is still seeking support a year
after Swedish insurer Skandia AB said it would end title sponsorship in
2008. The event, which ended last week, has been held every August since
1826, except during the two World Wars.

``We hope Cowes won't be threatened,'' said Katie Ashworth, who organized
the largest fleet at Cowes, the Laser SB3s, which had 84 boats racing. ``We
hope there will still be an event.'' Skandia, which was acquired by
London-based Old Mutual Plc last year, is ending its 14-year backing of
Cowes while remaining sponsors of the U.K. Olympic sailing team. A new
partner has so far eluded organizers with companies unwilling to commit
money to sports events as the economy stalls and profits tumble,
particularly at financial services companies. -- Read on:

A long way, in more ways than one, from Qingdao, another opening ceremony
has taken place at the sixth IODA African Championship on the island of
Mauritius, where a record eleven African nations are represented by a total
of 61 sailors. For the first time West Africa is represented at the event by
teams from Angola and Senegal, the latter participating in their first ever
sailing event since becoming ISAF members last November. The legacy of the
event will be huge. All 60 charter boats have either been sold to local
parents or will be used by the Mauritius Y.A. to increase and establish new
bases around this sailing paradise island. Discussion among the large group
of spectators centred on identifying bays and lagoons suitable for the new
sport and when the next batch of boats could be imported. – Event website:

by Louay Habib, Bang the Corner
It was the late 1990s, and the old and the new generations of grand prix
sailors were getting frustrated - and that is putting it politely. They were
getting disenchanted with big boat racing due to the fight for supremacy for
a single grand prix rule. Owners and sailors turned to one design racing and
the drawing boards of Farr and Reichel Pugh provided some fantastic boats
for them to race; the Mumm 30, the Melges 24 and the Farr 40. In the UK the
new racing rule, IRM, was struggling and the grand prix sailors voted with
their feet. In between America’s Cup or Volvo Ocean Race cycles they raced
one design classes and supplemented their incomes by sailing handicap boats
at high profile regattas.

Meanwhile on the Pacific coast of the USA, the Transpac Yacht Club came up
with a new class for the 2,250 mile slay ride from San Francisco to Honolulu
for 50 footers. The idea was to make a box rule but it didn’t take off until
Tom Pollack came along as he explains, “As the same time that the Club made
the box rule, there were three guys in Southern California; Jim Demetriades,
Mike Campbell and David Janes sitting at the bar in Long Beach Yacht Club
and they were all talking about building different boats. They were all
friends of mine and I said why don’t you build the same size boat, the
Transpac Yacht Club has got this new box rule and we can have a talk with
them and see what comes of it. We took a look at the rule and it was pretty
complex with water ballast and so forth which was not want the three owners
wanted, any way we simplified it a lot and got the size increased to 52ft
and formed an owners association.” -- Read on:

Whether winning its 39 boat class at Cowes, pacing the fleet to Mackinac, or
hosting the two-week family cruise, few boats do so many things well like
the J/109. The cockpit seats eight, the interior sleeps six and one person
can sail her FAST! The J/109 is the whole package.

* Juliana Senfft and her team (Gabriela Sa’, Adhara Giniad, and Maite Ramos)
from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil won the inaugural Northern Lights Cup in
Sheboygan, WI, USA by beating Andrea Cabito (Alameda, CA, USA) 3-0 in the
finals. In the petit-finals, Liz Hjorth (Marina del Rey, CA, USA) beat the
local team skippered by Kathy Lindgren (Sheboygan, WI, USA) 3-2. The event
was held in Sail Sheboygan’s new fleet of Sonars in picture perfect "Chamber
of Commerce" conditions on Lake Michigan. The winds ranged from light breeze
during some of the round robin racing on Friday to over 20 knots in the
semi-final round on Saturday afternoon. --

* The currents can suck your socks off and the fog is a common backdrop, but
those are the only comparisons between 2008 Olympic sailing in Qingdao
already under way and the seventh 18' Skiff International Regatta that
blasts off Tuesday through Saturday, organized by the host St. Francis Yacht
Club. Among the 11 boat fleet will be American favorite Howie Hamlin plus a
couple of Australians: reigning 18' Skiff international champion Seve Jarvin
and European champion Grant Rollerson. -- Full report:

* Changes to Colorado’s law on boating under the influence recently went
into effect, decreasing the legal limit for blood alcohol content and
expanding the reach of the law to operators of any waterborne vessel.
Previously, the BUI law applied only to operators of motorboats or sailboats
whose BAC was .10 or above. Now, the limit for BAC is .08, making it
consistent with the legal limit for motor vehicle operators on Colorado
roadways. The new BUI law applies to any water vessel powered by motor,
paddle or oar, including jet skis, kayaks, canoes, sailboats and rafts. --
Soundings Trade, read on:

* Robbers armed with machetes hacked a U.S. tourist to death and seriously
wounded his wife in an attack aboard the couple's sailboat in northeastern
Guatemala. Nancy Dryden, 67, said her husband, Daniel Perry Dryden, 66, was
killed by four men who boarded their boat late Saturday while it was
anchored in Lake Izabal. The Drydens, who are retired and live near
Anchorage, Alaska, had bought the boat in February. They were equipping the
vessel in preparation for a voyage into the Caribbean and eventually to the
eastern coast of the United States. --Fox New, full story:,2933,401301,00.html

The story behind the 18 stars in the Ida Lewis Yacht Club burgee has to do
with the club’s namesake, Ida Lewis, who was the female keeper of the Lime
Rock Lighthouse in the early 1800s. It is said that she famously rowed her
lifeboat to wherever a sailor was in need, with legend having it that in
daring rescues she saved 18 lives, with each rescue represented by a single
star on the Ida Lewis Yacht Club burgee. Fast forward to this weekend, Ida
Lewis YC will be hosting an interesting mix of IRC, PHRF and Double-Handed
entries for the Ida Lewis Distance Race. Beginning and ending off Newport,
R.I., the race incorporates some of the most storied and beautiful sailing
grounds in the world, covering 175 nautical miles on the coastal waters of
Block Island Sound and Rhode Island Sound. -- Race details:

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 be no longer than 250 words (letter
might be edited for clarity or simplicity). 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 Harold Hoffman, Toledo, Ohio: (edited to the 250-word limit) I live
near the Canadian border and can watch the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. (CBC)
coverage of the Olympic Games, which is excellent by the way. CBC provides
MUCH more coverage than NBC in the U.S., fewer commercials, better
commentary, and no political ads! CBC will be broadcasting the Games 24/7,
much of it live, for the next two weeks.

I visited the CBC website ( to check its programming schedule for
coverage of sailing. Interestingly it only is covering the final races of
each class and will NOT be broadcasting it on the network. Instead it will
be offered on CBC’s digital feed, called Bold, over the Internet. CBC will
be broadcasting over its on-air network events such as Shooting, Fencing,
Badminton, Walking, Men’s Hammer Throw (Qualifying round), and Archery as
well as the many other more telegenic event. The ONLY other Olympic
competition relegated to Bold is Equestrian. I have long thought that
Olympic coverage shortchanges sailing, but one must admit that if CBC sees
more value in broadcasting shooting, walk racing, and the hammer throw than
sailing, maybe it is time for us to face the reality that our sport is more
esoteric than we would all like to believe.

* From Jill Nickerson: At the bottom of the NBC Olympics website is an
opinion pole of whether to bring the Tornado back to the 2012 Olympics. Will
it make a difference?....who knows but it can’t hurt. This may make a
difference for SAILING at the Olympics.

The IOC put the mandate to ISAF that sailing needs to be more exciting if
they are to remain. As a result, the multihull class brought in the
Spinnaker set up. The multihull class and 49rs end up being the two classes
in the sailing that the media really are attracted to. Without media
attraction a sport dies. Now they have decided to get rid of multi hulls.
This is bad for the whole sport of sailing....not just multi hull. This
could be the beginning of the end for the sport in the Olympics because it
gives the IOC an excuse to drop the whole sport. Right now it is not a
matter of which multihull to get in the games, it is a matter of just having
a multihull. It is the most likely case to let the Tornado back in before
anything other cat and they would view kicking out multi hull as the mistake
it was . So weather you want the Tornado, Capricorn, Hobie, Nacra....or any
other cat in to put the Tornado back for 2012. They are giving
sailors a voice.....lets voice. Please get everyone you know to vote! Here
is the link:

Everyone is entitled to my opinion.

Special thanks to JK3 Nautical Enterprises, North Sails, and J Boats.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at