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SCUTTLEBUTT 2659 - Wednesday, August 13, 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.

Qingdao, China (August 12, 2008; Day Four) – Qingdao has impressed the
skeptics by mustering enough breeze to run the first three days of sailing
on schedule. However, today’s six classes were not so lucky and sat onshore
in an hour-long postponement before heading out to the race course. Breezes
picked up to a suitable six to seven knots for the first races of the day,
but by the second races the changing current and growing chop made the
conditions feel a bit stickier. Regardless, all classes completed their
daily schedule of races.

The morning saw a flotilla of over 300 small boats responded to an overnight
algae bloom, and cleaned up as much as possible before racing. Though the
algae has been present in small patches recently, today saw a resurgence,
but nothing near the devastating caliber of six weeks ago. The algae clumps
were readily visible on the television coverage, and avoiding them added
another variable to the challenging conditions.

This will be the first Olympics that utilizes the medal race format, wherein
the top ten positions after 10 races (15 for the 49er) advance to the final
medal race. In this race, finishing position points are doubled, and the
score cannot be discarded. For some sailors who see their chance at a medal
drifting away, there remains a degree of redemption by qualifying for the
medal race. The first sailors that will feel this pinch are in the Finn and
Yngling fleets, as only four races remain before their medal race on

> 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/ Gaztañaga, 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. AUS, Nathan Wilmot/Malcolm Page, 4-7-3-3, 17
2. FRA, Nicolas Charbonnier/Olivier Bausset, 6-3-8-1, 18
3. ESP, Barreiros Onan/Aaron Sarmiento, 8-2-6-9, 25
4. ITA, Gabrio Zandona/Andrea Trani, 10-4-7-7, 28
5. GBR, Nick Rogers/Joe Glanfield, 19-5-1-4, 29
23. USA, Stuart McNay/Graham Biehl, 26-12-(OCS/30)-17, 85
28. CAN, Stéphane Locas/Oliver Bone, 25-25-OCS/30)-20, 100

470 Women (19 entrants)
1. AUS, Elise Rechichi/Tessa Parkinson, 2-2-4-1, 9
2. ESP, Natalia Via-Dufresne/Laia Tutzó, 4-5-2-6, 17
3. NED, Marcelien De Koning/Lobke Berkhout, 3-1-9-5, 18
4. ISR, Nike Kornecki/Vered Buskila, 8-13-1-2, 24
5. ITA, Giulia Conti/Giovanna Micol, 14-7-6-3, 30
15. USA, Amanda Clark/Sarah Mergenthaler, 12-12-10-14, 48

RS:X Men (35 entrants)
1. ISR, Shahar Zubari, 1-3-1-3, 8
2. HKG, King Yin Chan, 5-4-2-5, 16
3. NZL, Tom Ashley, 4-7-7-1, 19
4. FRA, Julien Bontemps, 13-1-5-4, 23
5. GBR, Nick Dempsey, 11-9-3-2, 25
10. MEX, David Mier y Teran, 16-5-17-6, 44
22. CAN, Zachary Plavsic, 23-25-22-21, 91
24. USA, Ben Barger, 21-22-24-26, 93

RS:X Women (27 entrants)
1. CHN, Jian Yin, 1-1-1-3, 6
2. ESP, Marina Alabau, 3-5-5-2, 15
3. AUS, Jessica Crisp, 2-4-3-8, 17
4. ITA, Alessandra Sensini, 6-2-9-1, 18
5. GBR, Bryony Shaw, 4-3-11-6, 24
14. CAN, Nikola Girke, 11-14-13-14, 52
25. MEX, Demita Vega, 23-21-25-25, 94
26. USA, Nancy Rios, 25-24-22-26, 97

Laser (43 entrants)
1. NZL, Andrew Murdoch, 2-5, 7
2. ITA, Diego Romero, 6-3, 9
3. ARG, Julio Alsogaray, 1-12, 13
4. POR, Gustavo Lima, 5-8, 13
5. CYP , Pavlos Kontides, 8-7, 15
13. USA, Andrew Campbell, 14-18, 32
16. CAN, Michael Leigh, 13-23, 36
28. ISV, Thomas Barrows, III, 20-28, 48

Laser Radial (28 entrants)
1. USA, Anna Tunnicliffe, 4-5, 9
2. BEL, Evi Van Acker, 1-10, 11
3. FRA, Sarah Steyaert, 11-1, 12
4. LTU, Gintare Volungeviciute, 3-13, 16
5. AUS, Sarah Blanck, 6-11, 17
24. CAN, Lisa Ross, 16-23, 39
27. MEX, Tania Elias Calles Wolf, 27-25, 52
Complete results:

* RACE SCHEDULE: Wednesday will have the following classes racing: 470 Men
and Women (Course A), 49er (Course B), Laser and Laser Radial (Course C),
and Finn, and Yngling (Course E). The RS:X Men and Women will have a rest
day, while the Star and Tornado remain the last events to start on August

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 Wednesday, August 13, both
forecasting models are showing wind strength to be 5 knots or less
(estimating the wind gradient from 40m height in model to 5m height). Wind
direction from SE. 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 470 Men and Women will be the media darlings for
Wednesday when they begin their third day of competition on Course A, which
is the course used for television and online coverage. For the US audience,
Gary Jobson is now working with the NBC production team, adding his
commentary to the online shows through to the end of the series.
> U.S viewing schedule:
> Canadian viewing schedule:

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Here are the countries that currently have entrants in the top three:
Australia - 5
France - 3
Spain - 3
Great Britain - 2
Italy - 2
Netherlands - 2
New Zealand - 2
United States - 2
Argentina - 1
Belgium - 1
China - 1
Denmark - 1
Hong Kong - 1
Israel - 1

After getting shut out of the medals in 2004, the Australian team has
entrants among the top five positions in six of the nine events that are now
underway. While they do not have a rep in the RS:X Men and are 17th in the
Finn, probably the biggest shocker is their Laser rep, Tom Slingsby, who is
the current Laser World Champion and the top ISAF rated Laser sailor in the
world, but struggled on day one and currently finds himself in 23rd
position. Here are some links from the 2004 Olympic Games:
> Medal Count:
> Photos:

Who is the shortest competitor in the 2008 sailing events? (Answer below)

* For the Laser fleet’s first race, television and online viewers likely
spotted the “kit” worn by third place finisher Matias del Solar Goldsmith
from Chile. The Chilean sailor was dressed in little more than his buoyancy
aid and a pair of Speedos, which perhaps explains why the rest of the fleet
was so far back. "It's a bit offputting," said Britain's Paul Goodison, "he
should be reported to the fashion police."Maybe the fashion police did have
words with the Speedo Latino, because Goldsmith put on his hiking shorts for
the second race, only to finish a lowly 34th. -- SailJuice,

* On Monday August 11 2008, the revolutionary Tornado-sail of Double Olympic
medalist Mitch Booth and Pim Nieuwenhuis (NED) was authorized for the
Olympic Games. That means the Dutch multihull sailors may use the upwind
gennaker for the Olympic regatta in Qingdao. That gives them an advantage in
speed up to 11 knots of wind, in which they can hoist the sail in the beat.
“We are allowed to use it”, said Pim Nieuwenhuis, who just returned from a
training session with the Americans Lovell/Ogletree. “We have the stamps, so
the sail officially passed the measurement”, added Mitch Booth. He had more
news: “I am leaving the boat park now and I can see the Argentineans working
on an upwind gennaker as well. They work with North Sails, who also built
the sails for the French and British teams. The French are already measured
in, but the Argentineans still have to go. I am guessing, but one of those
teams may have one. Interesting Games.” Booth is not worried about the
latest development among the fleet: “They are very late, so I wish them good
luck.” --

* The Chinese have had a bit of a disaster with the sail stickers, an
apparent cost saving measure, making the stickers themselves, but using a
material that was not sticking to the sails. Replacement stickers were
promptly ordered and have been slowly getting applied to the sails.

The event website has posted all the competitor requests for information.
Here are a few interesting ones:

* REQUEST: Bearing in mind the recent issues regarding large amounts of weed
on the field of play, please can the organisers permit the use of weed
sticks by all competitors for this event only.
REPLY: Boats in the Star Class may use a weed stick in accordance with the
Class Rules. Weed sticks are not permitted in other classes. There is no
exception to normal class rules.

* REQUEST: A boat is approaching the start line on starboard tack 30 seconds
before the start. An upwind current is carrying the boat toward the start
line. She backs her sail still carrying the main on her port side and as a
result of that she: 1) Is beyond doubt moving "backward" trough the water
looking at her hull and rudder. 2) She is still moving "forward" over the
ground physically approaching the start mark and beyond doubt decreasing the
distance to the mark. Is the boat "moving astern" will regard to RRS 20.3
yes or no?
REPLY: A boat is moving astern if it is sailing backwards through the water,
irrespective of its movement over the ground. In your example, the answer is

* REQUEST: Please can you supply the "individual race results with mark
roundings" sheet in A4 format, as on the notice board to the team’s pigeon
holes. Double sided printing would mean no more paper is required than the
A5 size currently supplied. Thank you.
REPLY: Sorry, to facilitate a Green Olympics, I am afraid we cannot do that
for consideration of environmental protection.
=>Read all the requests here:

by Sarah Webb (GBR), leading Yngling team
One of our guiding principles in this campaign has been keeping every day
the same, training each day as hard as we would if we were racing at the
Olympics. You can build confidence by having routines so when it comes to
the high pressure moments you automatically default to the training and the
routines we have in place.

One of the examples along the same lines I always gave after Athens was, we
left the apartments in the morning and turned left to go training for the
day, when the Olympics started everything stayed the same except we turned
right to the Olympic Marina. I am sure the Royal Yachting Association didn't
take this into consideration when they were looking for our accommodation
here in Qingdao we turned left out of the hotel to go to the
training marina, and turn right out of the hotel to go to the Olympic
Marina. See? Routines!! -- Read on:

As our sailors battle it out in the waters of Qingdao, a sight that has
repeated itself thousands of times this summer continues. Ever present, but
always in the background, RIBCRAFT RIBs are there supporting the sailors.
From mark boats and safety boats to spectator and coach boats, a RIB
provides the optimal platform for setting marks, coaching, or just watching
races. As the official RIB of the US SAILING Team, RIBCRAFT is proud to
salute our sailors competing in China this week. To find out more about the
RIBCRAFT line of professional grade RIBs, visit

* Ribcraft will be featured in an upcoming episode of “Some Assembly
Required,” a weekly Discovery Channel series. The episode featuring Ribcraft
will first air at 8 p.m. Sept. 4. “Some Assembly Required,” hosted by Brian
Unger, filmed the Ribcraft process of building a RIB and learned how one is
made from the people at Ribcraft. -- Soundings Trade, read on:

Sydney, Australia (August 12, 2008) - A sudden spectacular cartwheel has
ended Wot Rocket’s first round of official attempts on the 500m world speed
sailing record on Botany Bay. With the pod lifting out of the water on a
number of occasions this morning and pilot Sean Langman’s confidence
building, he decided to trial a different runway on flatter water just off
Dolls Point. In an 18-20 knot westerly wind Wot Rocket accelerated to an
estimated 30 knots of boat speed before the crew found themselves flying
blind, without instruments and with co-pilot Joe De Jock unable to ease the
wing sail and Langman unable to steer.

The damage report is substantial and Langman estimates it will be weeks
before they are back on the water. A quick once over this afternoon has
revealed a broken mast step, suspected delamination of the Nomex in the wing
sail and broken fairing on the transverse beam. A new set of instruments
will also have to be ordered. -- Complete report and photo:

* In an effort to contain costs, boating supplies retail giant West Marine
plans to close its distribution center in Hagerstown, Md., its call center
in Largo, Fla., and 25 to 30 underperforming stores, it reported in SEC form
8-K/A last week. -- Boating Industry, read on:

* The Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, the organising authority for the
64th Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, have announced the release of the
Notice of Race and that the entry period for the race has now begun. The
Rolex Sydney Hobart 2008 will start from Sydney Harbour at 1pm Boxing Day,
26 December, and take the fleet 628 nautical miles south across the Tasman
Sea to Hobart, Tasmania. The closing date for applications for entry is
1700hrs, Monday 3 November 2008. --

* The Small Craft (Sailing) Technical Panel of the Society of Naval
Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME) has issued its initial call for
papers for the SNAME Journal of Sailboat Technology. The new online,
peer-reviewed journal will focus on research achievements and engineering
practices ranging from sailboat systems and sail design to materials and
construction methods, weather routing and race simulation. A detailed list
of topics and guidelines for authors are posted at the journal’s web site:

* The 100-foot Speedboat, which has been on standby in Newport, RI to
attempt a transatlantic record run, has decided to postpone its plan until a
higher probability of a satisfactory weather window presents itself in
September and October. As a result, Speedboat will also not be competing in
the Rolex Maxi Worlds. – Complete report:

* Originally conceived in 2007 as a biennial event, the Transatlantic Maxi
Yacht Cup will take place again in 2008 based on the success of the
inaugural event held last fall. Organized by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda
(YCCS), the starting gun for the 2008 Transatlantic Maxi Yacht Cup will
sound on Monday, November 24, in Santa Cruz de Tenerife (the largest of the
seven Canary Islands off the northwest coast of Africa), setting the Maxis
racing across the North Atlantic Ocean. It should take them roughly two
weeks to reach the finish line off the island of Sint Maarten in the
Netherlands Antilles. -- Full details:

The shortest competitor in the 2008 sailing events is RS:X Women’s entrant
Nancy Rios (USA) at 157 cm (5 foot 1.8 inches). The current leader in this
class is 2004 Olympic silver medalist Jian Yin of China, who stands 170 cm
(5 foot 6.9 inches).

If you are to search online for information on Cal 32 boats or for using
Windward Gates as the weather mark, the top ranked listing you are likely to
find will come from the Scuttlebutt Forum. Internet search engines are hard
to trick, and they rank website pages based on the quality of the
information, and then factor in the amount of traffic that goes to that
website page. Scuttlebutt Forum traffic continues to grow, and apparently
these two threads are the dominant source for information on the Internet.
Presently, the Forum categories are:

> Dock Talk: For all your sailing comments and questions.
> Sailing Event Reports: For posting regatta reports and commentary.
> Collegiate Sailing: For topics specifically relating to college sailing.
> New Product Announcements: For equipment, boats, and clothing/accessories.
> Classified Ads: Free postings for gear, wanted items, jobs, and boats

Log-in to the Forum here:

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 Paul V. Oliva: Let's give thanks for US Olympics sailing coverage.
Along with terrific sailors battling in difficult conditions, I am thankful
for complete live and archived race coverage from start to finish, with no
interruptions. The technology is fantastic. The online schedules and links
are great, and I like how archived races allow jumping to key legs. The nice
camerawork, cutaways to competitors' on-board cameras, and live shots of
Qindao are fun. With such innovations, shortcomings stand out:

> NBC, please eliminate video links to races without video coverage. For
instance, clicking on Day 2 of the Finn and Yngling races only leads to the
49er races. Mystifying if you don't read Scuttlebutt (only Course A races
have coverage).
> Picture clarity, levels of graphics and play-by-play data have been oddly
> Race postponements are a reality and hard to predict. But viewers need
estimated length. It's not that fun waiting at the computer.
> Let's get better video introductions to the classes—clips interesting to
sailors and non-sailors alike and more colorful than the text background.
Video with a nice overview of the boat, key techniques, recent developments
(such as the Code 0 controversy), top contenders. Instead, for instance,
"Introduction to the Laser" was an interview with Andrew Campbell. I liked
hearing Andrew, and I wish him Olympic success. But it wasn't really an
introduction to the Laser.
> Even being prepared for it, it's been painful to see the light winds make
for less exciting viewing.

Other views?

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: From what I understand, all the camera personnel
are very experienced with sailing events, but the director and production
are newbies to the sport. What we are viewing is what has been provided to
all the companies with hosting rights in each country. What we see is what
they were sent. Like coverage for any event, interest to improve the product
is directly related to interest in the product. The more traffic the "suits"
see for the television and online coverage will spike their desire to
support sailing coverage in the future.

* From Rich Roberts: (re, story in Issue 2658) Louay Habab presented a long
and detailed account of the origins of the TP52 (originally the "Transpac
52"), but I don't think it gave proper credit to Bill (The Wizard) Lee, who
led the design team that created the box rule. Also, it did not note that
the simplified inspiration for the final model was John MacLaurin's Davidson
52, Pendragon, designed earlier as a one-off by Laurie Davidson. Originally,
I think the Transpacific Yacht Club was planning a 50-footer. Also, the race
(officially, the Transpacific Yacht Race, "Transpac" for short) starts in
Los Angeles (specifically, San Pedro, Calif.), not San Francisco.

* From Olof Hult: (re, Jill Nickerson’s letter in Issue 2658 encouraging
participation in a poll) And so you have established a new Definition: An
opinion pole (as opposed to an opinion poll) is a poll that is meaningless
when it is set up to solicit input without screening and ensuring validity
in the responses and the result to researchers must be rather uncomfortable,
sort like having a pole up one's 'b*tt.

You're just jealous because the voices only talk to me.

Special thanks to Harken and Ribcraft.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at