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SCUTTLEBUTT 2676 - Monday, September 8, 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.

As reported in Scuttlebutt 2675, Carl Paxon "Bunky" Helfrich, architect,
yachtsman and CNN Original, died peacefully on Wednesday, September 3, 2008.
His longtime friend Gary Jobson has provided a complete obituary, and also
an interview he had done with Bunky discussing their time as part of the
winning 1977 America's Cup team with skipper Ted Turner and Courageous. Here
is an excerpt of the interview, which points out the progress (some good,
some not so good) in the past 30 years:

* Tell me a little bit about Ted as a leader?
Helfrich : Ted is an unbelievable leader. He once said that he wasn't that
good in small boats because his primary talents were organization. So the
larger the boat got, the more his talents came into effect. He set goals for
everyone and then he left you alone. He would say let's get this
accomplished and that was about it. You accomplished it and you went on from

* What about the electronics back in 1977?
Helfrich : We didn't have electronics. We didn't have GPS. We didn't have
any of the things that these guys have now. Bill Jorch just navigated by the
seat of his pants. We never missed a mark. We were always on them. Gary
Jobson had a little puck that he went around sighting the wind and the other
boats and never missed a windshift. We never missed a tack. It was, again,
just a wonderful group of guys.

* So you didn't have the read outs from 150 different weather buoys?
Helfrich : We didn't have weather. We didn't have the chart tracks to see
where we were in comparison with the other boats. Ted said it a couple of
times that we were just out there, we were just doing seat of the pants
sailing and that's what we did. We concentrated on sailing the boat. We
didn't concentrate on technology. We didn't concentrate on new sail fabrics
or anything like that. Robbie Doyle was amazing on the boat in that in July
our sails had been completely worn out and he was able to patch the sails
back together so we could complete the July trials and then luckily one of
our friends from Texas bought us some new sails for the August trials. And
then we went on again to start winning and that was when we were selected to
be the defender.

Complete interview and obituary:

When the Volvo Ocean Race for crewed VO70s begins October 4th in Alicante,
Spain, and the Vendee Globe for singlehanded Open 60s begins November 9th in
Les Sables d'Olonne, France, both events will head south down the Atlantic
Ocean toward which points? (Answer below)

* Brian Todd, National Team Coach, Canadian Sailing Team: "(Last Saturday
was) another beautiful day in Qingdao; it was 5-10 knots in the AM and
slightly less in the PM. As I look out the window here in Qingdao, all of
the buildings are lit up; it is for lack of more words, amazing! They have
an interesting system here. During the evening there are so many lights that
I would think you could see the place from space but around 10:00PM the
lights begin to dim and by 10:30 every light in every tower is out and
energy is saved during the night - good concept! I am not sure how they do
it but there are sailing pictures projected on a number of buildings and a
boat or graphics move from building to building like a movie screen. It is
hard to describe but if you have the chance make the trip it is certainly
one of the more vibrant cities I have visited." --

* Betsy Alison, Coach, US Paralympic Sailing Team: "Just as an FYI, we have
seen cooler temperatures (in the 70s) than the Olympic sailors had in
August, and we are seeing slightly more breeze on average (3-7 knots daily
so far). I can only hope that it continues along those lines." --

* A record 80 athletes sailing in 41 boats from 25 nations will compete for
the medals in Qingdao, in what is sailing's third appearance at a
Paralympics. Two races are scheduled to take place on Monday's opening day
with 11 races scheduled in total for all three classes before the end of the
regatta and medal ceremonies on Saturday, September 13th. There are no medal
races for the Paralympics, with four races needed to constitute a series.
There will be one drop race if 5 to 8 races are completed, and two drop
races if 9 to 11 races are completed. --

Morris Yachts announces the latest addition to their M-Series line - the M29
is intended for short or single-handed sailing. Hull #1 will be launched in
February. The M29 will deliver performance sailing that is fun and
comfortable. The boat is a graceful combination of classic style, the latest
in naval architecture and modern boatbuilding materials. Her Morris Yachts
quality construction and finish, together with her S&S design pedigree will
guarantee lasting service and value. To date the company has sold 73
M-Series yachts since the first M36 was launched in 2004. For more

By Cory Friedman, AC Legal Analyst
(September 7, 2008) Even attentive 'Buttheads who diligently have been
paying attention to The Greatest Show on Earth, the three ring circus also
known as the AC litigation (Commercial Division, Appellate Division, First
Department, and now the main event in the third and most important ring, the
New York Court of Appeals) may have forgotten about the AC sideshow in the
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, before District
Judge Pauley.

There amongst General Tom Thumb, The Fiji Mermaid and Chang and Eng, the
Siamese Twins, Team New Zealand (TNZ) has been exhibiting the greatest
oddity of them all, The Lawsuit to Nowhere, against Ernesto Bertarelli and
his posse (SNG, ACM, et al.). If you have been focusing on the presidential
race between "Senator Change" and "Senator Change," or have actually been
out sailing or doing something useful, a quick refresher is in order. --
Read on:

* Author G. Bruce Knecht has published a story regarding the current state
of the America's Cup in the first issue of WSJ Magazine, the weekend
magazine that was published September 6th as part of the Wall Street
Journal. For those who are less enamored by American Larry Ellison's
involvement in the America's Cup, their safe haven appears to be distance
racing. Knecht explains: "(Ellison's interest in the America's Cup) happened
when he sailed the Sydney Hobart race in 1998 and the fleet was battered by
waves more than 80 feet tall and hurricane-force winds, resulting in five
boats sinking and the death of six sailors. As Ellison's boat began
disintegrating, he swore that if he survived he'd never enter another ocean
race. Said Ellison, 'I decided to focus on a more technical and less
life-threatening form of sailing.'" -- Complete article:

* Emirates Team New Zealand is down to only "four or five" people, says
former director of sailing Rod Davis, one of the latest casualties as the
cost of prolonged America's Cup court action bites deep. Davis has been "let
go" as the legal wrangle between BMW Oracle and holders Alinghi continues to
exert financial pressure on would-be Cup challengers. Davis is the
highest-profile casualty of the latest layoffs. He has been involved with
the America's Cup for 20 years, appointed coach of Team New Zealand in 1988,
prompting his move to New Zealand from his native US. The move does not mean
that Team NZ is surrendering its America's Cup ambitions - merely that it
must go into "sleep" mode for the time being. -- NZ Herald, full story:

* Even though the New York Court of Appeals has still not decided whether
the BMW Oracle Racing trimaran will ever compete for the America's Cup, the
Anacortes-based team has attracted a steady stream of interest in the Deed
of Gift challenger that they launched last week. Visiting on Friday was
United States Congressman Rick Larsen, and today will see Scuttlebutt
publisher Craig Leweck checking in with the team. To help fill the thirst
for information, the team has produced a video that is now online:

After six years of sailing at the leading edge of international maxi yacht
racing with his maxi and 'super' maxi yachts Alfa Romeo and Alfa Romeo 2,
Neville Crichton, the Australasian businessman and yachtsman, is
'down-sizing' - but still retaining the Alfa Romeo marque. The Sydney-based
New Zealander has dominated maxi boat racing in the Mediterranean with his
90-footer and his 100-footer, both named Alfa Romeo, sailing the latter to
line honours in a remarkable 135 races.

In contrast to the 'super' maxi, Crichton's new racing yacht is a 69-foot
'mini' maxi named Alfa Romeo III. His objective is closer racing
competition. Alfa Romeo III made her racing debut in the new Mini Maxi
Division of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup at Porto Cervo, Sardinia last week,
sailed there by the Ericcson Volvo Round the World team, headed by Torben
Grael. Why, after years of campaigning boats among the biggest and fastest
racing yachts in the world has the New Zealand speed enthusiast - in cars
and boats - 'down-sizing'?

"I would have loved to have built another 100-footer, but the level, quality
and quantity of competition in this class is simply not at the level at
which I would wish to continue competing," Crichton said. "There are
probably ten yachts in this class in the world that are competitive, but it
has proven very hard to get a reasonable number of them, let alone all of
them, together for the same event. With Mini Maxis (60 and 79 feet LOA)
there will be more of them built and this means strong, more varied fleets,
and that's the sort of racing in which I wish to compete." -- Adonnante,
complete story:

* Porto Cervo, Italy (September 6, 2008) - The 19th edition of the Maxi
Yacht Rolex Cup, organized by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, concluded today
with the forty competing Maxi yachts waiting for wind, but the light and
shifty breezes build past 2 knots and PRO Peter Craig was forced to abandon
racing for the day. Overall victory therefore went to George David's Rambler
(USA), Ernesto Bertarelli's Numbers(SUI), Ranger (CAY ISL) and Lindsay Owen
Jones' Magic Carpet2 (GBR) in the Racing, Mini Maxi, Cruising and Wally
divisions respectively. On an upbeat note, reports from the crew of Andres
Soriano's Alegre advise that crewmember Led Pritchard is expected to make a
full-recovery from his traumatic lower right-leg fracture suffered after a
halyard wrapped around his leg just as the jammer that was holding the
halyard broke.
Event reports:
Audio interviews:

* There is a good reason that Maxi owners hold the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup in
Porto Cervo. because the place is god's gift to the sport. For photographers
Carlo Borlenghi and Ingrid Abery, we suspect this event was in the cue long
ago. Enjoy their imagery:

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St Moritz, Switzerland (September 7, 2008) - Mathieu Richard (FRA) was
crowned the 'King of the Mountain' today in St Moritz after beating Ian
Williams (GBR) 2-0 in a light wind final, claiming the St. Moritz Match Race
title after several days of postponements, freezing temperatures, storms,
and fickle winds. Richard and Williams had advanced to Finals after
Semi-Final matches against Philippe Presti (FRA) and Adam Minoprio (NZL),

In the first match of the Finals, a split tack saw Richard take an early
lead but not enough to be able to cross in front of Williams. As the teams
approached the top mark on opposite tacks, Richard on Port, they both luffed
head to wind but Richard just had enough speed to wriggle around the bow of
Team Pindar to take the lead. "Mathieu was faster off the start in both
races, and that's what won him the races. For some reason we weren't able to
attack or defend this afternoon," said Williams at the press conference
after racing.

In the petit-final, Minoprio won the first race, but Presti went on to take
the next two and secure 3rd place. Currently Ian Williams leads the World
Match Racing Tour with 92 points, followed by Mathieu Richard on 72 points.
The tour now heads to the Troia Portugal Match Cup in Troia, Portugal on
Sept 23-28, 2008, where teams will be racing the SM40's for a total prize
purse of $125,000.00.
Final day recap:

The much anticipated MORNING LIGHT movie, which documents the training and
participation of a young group of sailors in the 2007 Transpac race, will
have several premieres in October. For the Chesapeake Bay area, and
particularly for those attending the US Boat Show in Annapolis (Oct 9-13),
the movie will be shown on Thursday, October 9 at 6:00 p.m. at Bow Tie
Cinemas, Annapolis, and Friday, October 10 at 6:00 p.m. at Landmark Theatres
- Harbor East, Baltimore. Special Guests include Roy Disney, Leslie DeMeuse
Disney, Gary Jobson (Baltimore only), Robbie Haines and MORNING LIGHT Crew
Charlie Enright, Steve Manson, and Jeremy Wilmot. The event will be hosted
by Downtown Sailing Center and National Sailing Hall of Fame, and will
benefit Downtown Sailing Center and Annapolis Community Boating. --

* Before Scuttlebutt publisher Craig Leweck heads east for the US Boat Show,
he will have attended the Hollywood premiere of the movie earlier that week,
and will hopefully have time to provide his comments before the east coast
showings. Here is the movie trailer:

CALENDAR OF MAJOR EVENTS (Sponsored by West Marine)
Events listed at

* Alicante, Spain (September 5, 2008) - PUMA Ocean Racing arrived in
Alicante, Spain mid afternoon today (CET), successfully delivering their
boat il mostro from their training base in Newport, RI. The team left
Newport on August 26th in preparation of the start of the Volvo Ocean Race
on October 4. The PUMA boat and sailors will remain in Spain until the start
to continue their training. The team still has to participate in the
required safety training, weather briefs and il mostro will undergo official
measurement by Volvo Officials. --

* Chicago, IL - With the schedule planning on four days of racing for
September 3-6, the 33-boats competing in the 2008 Beneteau First 36.7 North
American Championship had to be happy with only three days as shifty winds
forced the abandonment of racing on the fourth and final day. Overall winner
was Dan and Dave Shriner's Legend with Peter Wenzler's Blackbird finishing
second; both teams are from Detroit, MI. 2007 NA Champion Richard Reid's
Zingara from Toronto, Canada finished in third. The top Corinthian boat was
Chick and Alexis Pyle's, KEA from San Diego, CA. -- For reports and results:

* On Monday, September 15, 2008, Joby Easton & Bill Huseby - Division 1
Doublehanded and Overall winners of the 2008 Pacific Cup onboard their
Cascade 36 Raindrop - will have a presentation at the Hayden Island Yacht
Club Portland, OR at 7:00pm. --

Both the Volvo Ocean Race and the Vendee Globe begin by heading south in the
Atlantic Ocean. The Volvo Ocean Race heads south to a scoring gate at
Fernando de Noronha, an archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean about 220 miles
offshore from the Brazilian coast, before finishing their first leg (6500
miles) in Cape Town, South Africa. The VOR fleet will have started on their
next leg (to Cochin, India) before the non-stop Vendee fleet passes Cape
Town on the way to their first mark of the course 31 miles further south,
taking the Cape of Good Hope to port. From there, the route takes Cape
Leeuwin (Australia) to port, Cape Horn (Chile) to port, Antarctic to
starboard before finishing in the bay of Les Sables d'Olonne, France.
Volvo Ocean Race:
Vendee Globe:

September finds many of us winding down another great sailing season and
re-introducing ourselves to our significant others. Why not thank them for
their support with their own "trophy" from Nautical Luxuries. Mention the
Curmudgeon for a 10% discount. Try our Gift Guide and, if that works, come
back after Super Bowl.

Id Crook, established member of the Snipe class community, died peacefully
September 3, 2008. He was a long time sailor who met his wife Anne racing at
the Menai Straits Regatta in North Wales. They immigrated to Canada and
Oakville in 1954. It was at the Oakville Yacht Squadron in 1954 that he
discovered the Snipe Class. Through his racing he travelled the world,
represented Canada at the Pan American Games, was Commodore of SCIRA and the
Oakville Yacht Squadron and was an international Race Official. The OLDE MAN
was a serious sailor who knew how to have serious fun. There are many
stories of parties at various regattas that bring a smile and fond memories.
He leaves his wife Anne, daughter Gweneth and many close friends from around
the world. A celebration of his life will be held at a later date. Donations
in Id's memory can be made to either the Princess Margaret Hospital in
Toronto or the Trillium Cancer Centre in Mississauga. Condolences may be
left 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 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 Alexander Kovell: Dear Skip, I would like to thank you for setting
such a good example for the rest of us. No matter how hard it was, it sounds
like it was the right thing to do under the circumstances. It is sad for us
all that you had to scuttle a boat with so many miles, stories and memories.
Eight bells for Wildflower, may her passing lead to new friends and sailing

* From John Sweeney, St. Thomas: Regarding the aerial photos of the TP52
windward mark action in "butt 2675, did Quantum Racing get away with one at
that weather mark? Looking at the series of four quick succession photos,
images 1 thru 3 show Quantum in the process of tacking below Desafio, in all
three she is clearly not through her tack while Desafio is close hauled,
fetching the mark. By image 4, Quantum has completed her tack, is
unmistakably within the two boats length circle and Desafio is heading up to
give room at the mark. The question is, did Quantum make her tack inside of
the two length zone? Image 3 suggests that Quantum is inside of the zone
prior to completing her tack - it doesn't appear that another 52 could fit
between the stern of the white boat about to round and Desafio's bow. If so,
Quantum is not entitled to room inside of Desafio (RRS 18.3). Did Desafio
skipper Paul Cayard give one away to Quantum skipper Terry Hutchinson? --

=> Curmudgeon's Comment: These were great images for analysis, so we asked
Terry Hutchinson how the situation played out from his perspective. Said
Terry, "What the sequence does not show is that Desafio did a hard tack just
in front of us and left us only one avenue - to tack underneath. Did we get
away with one? Absolutely not! Desafio tacked very close to us but clear and
left us an avenue to tack underneath and lay the mark. They could not have
made it any harder on us, and as I look back at it, we did nice work to get
around the mark considering we started our tack underneath them going about
11.5 knots. Trust me when I say at this point of the series, there are no
breaks being given. All points good and bad are earned." --

Do hungry cows have ravenous appetites?

Special thanks to Morris Yachts, Harken, and International Crew.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at