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SCUTTLEBUTT 2696 - Monday, October 6, 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.

Portsmouth, England (October 4, 2008) - The Farr designed Telefónica Blue
(Bouwe Bekking/Iker Martinez) made it a win-win situation in today’s in-port
races held in Alicante, Spain, and now head the leaderboard of the Volvo
Ocean Race. After two races held in the bay of Alicante in glorious
Mediterranean sunshine, leading from start to finish in race one, and
winning an intense battle from PUMA to take race two, Telefónica Blue
finished in first place overall in front of their home crowd.

The short windward/leeward track set close to the shore was lined by over
500 spectator craft and thousands of people watched from the many vantage
points on the shore. The quay walls which gave an excellent view, were
packed, and huge crowds gathered around the big screen in the race village
as well as around the screens showing the race live in nearby hotels.

The first race, in which his Telefonica Blue team won by one minute and 47
seconds from Telefonica Black (Farr design), never looked in doubt. The
second race required a rally, with the opportunity for the lead coming on
the final run for the Spanish, where they erased PUMA Ocean Racing’s 14
second lead with just 1.6 miles to go. PUMA’s expensive angle through the
gate, combined with Telefonica’s better pressure on the right, turned a
Bekking silver into a 63-second procession for gold.

At the start of the second race, as Team Russia tried to fit between the
committee boat and Delta Lloyd, the Russian team’s bow sprit went through
the starboard side of the Dutch hull. Skipper Ger O’Rourke now has the boat
hauled for repairs and hopes to resume on-the-water training by Wednesday.
Team Russia also needed to be hauled for repairs. The Volvo Ocean Race
begins in earnest on Saturday, Oct. 11, when the fleet sets sail on a
6,500-nautical-mile leg to Cape Town, South Africa. -- Event website:

Current Standings
1. Telefónica Blue (Bouwe Bekking/Iker Martinez), 1-1, 4 points
2. Telefónica Black (Fernando Echávarri), 2-3, 3.5 points
3. Puma Il Mostro (Ken Read), 6-2, 3 points
4. Ericsson 4 (Torben Grael), 4-4, 2.5 points
5. Green Dragon (Ian Walker), 3-6, 2 points
6. Delta Lloyd (Ger O’Rourke), 8-7, 1 point
7. Ericsson 3 (Anders Lewander), 5-5, 0.5 points
8. Team Russia (Andreas Hanakamp), 7-8, 0.5 points
Points from both races were amalgamated to give an overall score for the
day’s racing. Tie breaks were decided by finishing positions in race two.
One point was deducted from the Ericsson 3 score per the jury decision
number JN04 (October 2).

* The next edition of the Volvo Ocean Race will start in 2011. The timing of
the official start for the 2011-12 race is scheduled for late summer/autumn
2011. Details of the exact timing and route will be made in 2010. It is the
first time in the history of the Volvo Ocean Race that the next iteration of
the race has been announced before the start of the current event. The
decision to announce the following race at this early stage is in direct
response to prospective teams for the 2011-12 race requesting adequate time
to prepare projects. -- Full story:

The first of the Volvo Ocean Race in-port events was won by Bouwe Bekking,
Iker Martinez and their boys on Telefonica Blue, with a beautiful day’s
sailing – fast, tidy and with few if any errors. But the Play of the Day was
all PUMA’s – sixth in the first race and up against the ropes, they pulled a
blinder that got them right back into it, almost won them the second race
and gave them a third for the day overall. It was all about the code -
specifically, the Code Zero. The rules have changed since the last Volvo
Ocean Race to allow these huge sails – hoisted all the way to the top of the
mast from the bow, and overlapping the mainsail almost back to the end of
the boom. -- Read on:

Congratulations to Will Welles and team for winning the coveted Newport J/24
Fleet 50 Season Championship. Equipped entirely with PARALOC running
rigging, Welles topped 30 other teams in what is arguably the most
competitive J/24 fleet in the world. Developed by the Swiss rope company
mamutec AG, Paralocs braiding process creates a free-running line that won’t
kink, has excellent holding power in clutches, and increased abrasion and
tear resistance. If you’re looking for more precise sail trim, Paraloc has a
line for you. For information on how to join the running rigging revolution,
call or visit R&W Rope Warehouse at

(October 4, 2008) On Friday, October 3rd, the Lüderitz Speed Challenge saw
Sebastien Cattelan of France become the first human being to sail at more
than 50 knots (93kph), a world record he held for only 24 hours before
compatriot Alexandre Caizergues snatched it away with not one but three runs
over 50 knots, reaching a top speed of 50.57 knots (93.65kph).

The massive winds that blew yesterday were exceeded today, although a later
low tide meant a slightly delayed start. Several of the top competitors,
including Cattelan and American Rob Douglas (who set a new world record in
the first few days of the Lüderitz Speed Challenge), selected slightly
smaller kites in today’s exceptionally strong conditions, but then swapped
back – possibly costing them a few valuable fractions of a second on the
record setting day. So far the Lüderitz Speed Challenge has seen ten new
outright records and four new outright women’s records. --

* From American Rob Douglas, who had set the previous outright record of
49.84 knots on September 19th: “I picked a bad day to learn some important
things yesterday. The worst companion of defeat is fear, plotting and
methodical, it probes my mind for all the crevices where the remaining bits
of hope can hide. Eager to snuff out the last remaining light of strength,
it easily illuminates all the ingredients of failure - injury, doubt,
mortality, humiliation, and anger. This ultimate struggle raged yesterday -
fear vs. hope.

“I also learned two more other lessons …never sail for a result and never
get off the 7 Xbow (even in 48kts). Congratulations to Alex, an amazing
competitor with massive amounts of determination. Wednesday looks like the
last good forecast for the event. I look forward to applying the lessons
learned.” --

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: Past issues of Scuttlebutt have covered the
exploits of three technology driven programs that have had the 50 knot
target in their sights for some time. We will wait to see what becomes of
the SAILROCKET, l’Hydroptère, and Wot Rocket programs, but it is nice to
know that every once in awhile it is the simple approach that proves best. A
kite, a board, and a man with tremendous courageous and determination, just
putting it all out there to seek the thrill of victory, or suffer the agony
of defeat.

Norfolk, VA (October 2, 2008) - The InterCollegiate Sailing Association
(ICSA) has recognized 20 outstanding scholar athletes by their selection to
the 2008 ICSA All Academic Sailing Team. The honor acknowledges success at
the highest levels – both on the water and in the classroom – of these men
and women who have been nominated by their respective schools for academic
and athletic performance during the 2007-2008 academic year. The 2008 ICSA
All Academic Team recognizes ten First Team and ten Second Team student
athletes who maintained a cumulative GPA of 3.5 on a scale of 4.00, were a
key starter or reserve member of their school’s sailing team, and who had
reached junior standing at his or her institution of learning in order to be
considered eligible for this distinction. -- Full story:

by Stas Holodnak
After tacking around the mark for the final time, we quickly raised the
spinnaker, where she flew high above the New York waters. It was a New York
City J/24 race, and while our finish was last, we at least set free the
patient race committee members. On the way back to the marina we observed
the Governor’s Island waterfall a few miles to the North East. A New York
City public art project, the waterfall resembled a giant slide made of
shining, white steel. The neighboring statue of Liberty did not seem to be
affected by the current financial crises.

Stress and anxiety might rule the Wall Street, but the Hudson River would
have none of it. However, soon after we docked, the enjoyment of our race
soon expired. Frantically searching for my car in the scarcely lit Battery
parking garage - several floors of claustrophobic nightmares - I at last
found it intimately close to a menacingly looking van with darkened windows.
Just in time, I thought, and hurriedly rescued my car from imminent threat,
fleeing the island of Manhattan into the warm September night. With winter
coming, I will miss the escape that sailing provides. -- Stas Holodnak,
Brooklyn NY

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* Santa Cruz, CA (October 3, 2008) - The writing was on the official notice
board at Santa Cruz Yacht Club Friday morning. After having sailed eight
races, Lars Guck had seven points. It would be tough for anyone to prevent
Guck from winning his fourth A-Class Catamaran North American championship
title. The committee gave the fleet an opportunity by running three races,
but Guck rolled through the day with all firsts to secure the title. “It’s
all about the local fleet,” Guck said. “We sail every Tuesday night and
complete about 100 races every summer. It keeps you sharp.” -- Daily

* Newport, RI (October 4, 2008) - From their opening race bullet, Sydney’s
Guy Stenning and his team held their lead to win the M 30 World
Championship, holding off Jim Richardson’s Barking Mad by four points
despite the American team winning the final four races. The event had been a
three horse race with Vincenzo Onorato’s Mascalzone Latino, but a collision
on Friday forced the Italians to carry a DNF in the no-drop series,
ultimately landing them in third in the final results. -- Daily reports:

* Rochester, NY (October 5, 2008) ­ Skip Shumway with crew Doug Faust won
the Ideal 18 North American Championship sailed on Lake Ontario at the
Rochester Yacht Club. Twenty boats participated with teams traveling from
the East Coast and Toronto area. Ten races were sailed over the weekend in
shifty conditions with breeze ranging from 5-15 knots. Shumway led both days
with Mark Lawless and reigning champion Shane Olney in hot pursuit. Full
results at

* Saint-Tropez is in southern France, located on the French Riviera with the
Med awash at its beaches. Known today for its famous and wealthy guests, the
town ably had its welcome mat out last week for Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez,
an amazing rendezvous of the most extraordinary modern sailing boats
alongside the most beautiful traditional yachts for the week long regatta.
Thanks to esteemed photographers Carlo Borlenghi and Ingrid Abery, the
sights of the event are now on four pages of the Scuttlebutt website:

* Sailing World's College Rankings as of September 30, 2008 find Boston
College and College of Charleston still atop, respectively, the Coed and
Women's rankings determined by SW's coaches panel of Michael Callahan
(Georgetown), Ken Legler (Tufts), and Mike Segerblom (USC). -- Full

* (October 4, 2008) The Swedish Linda Rahm won the Tróia Portugal Women's
Cup,organized by Sun Sailing team and sponsored by Turismo de Portugal and
Troiaresort, which ended today in Tróia. The crew won 13 matches and was
defeated only twice in the three Round Robins. Due to light wind, it was
only possible to do three flights of Round Robin 3, which prevented the
competition to reach the semi-finals and final. The North American Sandy
Hayes finished in 4th place. -- Complete report:

* After meeting with Class 40 racers, both in England and in Le Trinité,
France over the weekend, the Royal Southampton Yacht Club and Spice Race
organizer Tony Lawson have agreed to postpone the start of the 4321 mile
race from the Solent to St Georges, Grenada, until November 2009. The race
was originally a response to a gap in the Class 40 calendar, but the
deteriorating economic situation made it difficult for some of the early
supporters to fully commit to the race in terms of both time and money. --

* Long Beach, CA - Ten boats have now committed to the 2008 Long Beach to
Cabo San Lucas International Yacht Race, the 800-nautical mile run down the
Baja Peninsula to start Friday, Nov. 7 off the Belmont Veterans Memorial
Pier and ending at Cabo Falso located at the west end of Cabo San Lucas. The
maxis will be chasing the race record of 3 days 3 hours 46 minutes 24
seconds set in 1985 by Blondie, one of the first Santa Cruz 70s built. --

* The three groupings for Stage 1 of the 2008 King Edward VII Gold Cup
presented by Argo Group were announced last Friday. Mathieu Richard (FRA)
standing first in the ISAF Match Racing rankings and third in the World
Match Racing Tour tops Group 1. Ian Williams (GBR), second on the ISAF list
and first on the Tour, heads up Group 2. Last week’s winner of the Troia
Portugal Match Cup, Sebastian Col (FRA), ranked seventh by ISAF but holding
second on the Tour, tops Group 3. Racing on Bermuda’s Hamilton Harbour
starts on Tuesday October 7. Event website:

* Emirates Team New Zealand say they are one critical point away from
agreeing terms with Alinghi that could see the Swiss America's Cup holder
come to Auckland for the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series this summer (Jan-Feb
2009). It could also wrap up Team NZ's court action against Alinghi. That
one outstanding point is significant, however, as Alinghi have baulked at
providing certainty the next multi-challenger America's Cup regatta will
take place by 2011. Emirates Team New Zealand chief Grant Dalton says
Alinghi's response to the invitation ("drop your court case against us and
we'll come") had led to offers and counter-offers. -- NZ Herald, read on:

The Alicante in-port phase is over; all systems are "go". Fear of the
unknown is now the culture, as aptly put by PUMA's very own Neil Cox. We
wish your team lady luck, and are so proud your program developed and grew
at Newport Shipyard. -

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 Chip Croft, SEA-TV: We mourn the passing of John Biddle who was the
world's greatest sailing filmmaker for over 50 years - an incredible
accomplishment. He was a true gentleman and a great talent with a remarkable
sense of humor. For those searching for footage on the 1983 America's Cup,
SEA-TV produced a one hour video on the Cup primarily featuring the seventh
race plus we have additional unused footage. We may be reached at

* From Matt Rosenberg: (re, story in Issue 2692) I own a VHS video tape of
the final race of the 1983 America’s Cup, which was recorded from the RI NBC
affiliate. If interested, I can be contacted at

* From Bill Munster: In 1995, John Gladstone/North Sails (San Diego) asked
if we could have a special San Diego YC membership lunch with a guy named
Steve Fossett. John was providing sails for his new cat called “Lakota”.
Steve wanted to join the yacht club but was taking off real soon on one of
his Pacific crossings…we set it up and spent about three hours talking with
this amazing man…we talked about what he had done, and what he wanted and
dreamed about doing in the future. At the conclusion of the lunch we
approved him for membership in SDYC….we gave him a burgee to fly and went on
to become good friends. He always stayed in touch by sending a special
envelope with a special stamp and a story of his travels as a sailor,
swimmer, runner, flyer, balloonist, and much more. He was an amazing man and
one who will never be forgotten around SDYC and his world… and it really was
his world. May he finally Rest in Peace.

* From Russ Saunders Martinez: (re, story in #2695; edited to the 250 word
limit) As a sailing instructor who came to the sport as a former FAA Glider
Flight Instructor, I have always worried about Steve Fossett and the
conditions in the Sierra Nevada. Steve was an experienced glider pilot who
should have been used to the conditions when the winds over the mountains
create rotor zones on the back side of the mountains - severe tumbling and
rolling winds - that create severe down drafts of over 2000+ feet per minute
down, and early reports now state that there were large storm clouds over
the peaks around Mammoth Lakes on the day of the crash.

The Bellanca super Citabria might have not had enough power to counter a
down draft but just as I experienced in a sailplane, you have to discard
logic which tells you to pull up and apply power; you have to go against
your mental state and push the stick down going down even faster to go
forward to exit the rotor zone - he probably did this, given his experience,
but there was just not enough clear air to escape. This is supposition until
his actual crash site is released and the direction of the wind is known. I
lost a hero that day, but Steve Fossett will always be my hero.

In anticipation of the general release for the MORNING LIGHT movie on
October 17th, there are a number of special showings and fundraising
programs. There is now a special Morning Light Forum on the Scuttlebutt
website that can be used for all types of postings, from encouraging your
local one design fleet to go on a certain night, to full on organized
cocktail and pupu programs. The Forum also has all the opening theatre
locations, background movie info, movie trailer, etc.

Here is a list of the events currently posted:
October 9 - Vancouver, BC
October 9 - Annapolis, MD
October 10 - Baltimore, MD
October 11 - Reno, NV
October 12 - Portland, OR
October 13 - Seattle, WA
October 14 - San Diego, CA
October 15 - Newport Beach, CA
October 16 - Honolulu, HI and Santa Cruz, CA
November 7 - Sheboygan, WI
Post events here:

* The movie has already been shown in San Diego, CA, Miami, FL, Newport, RI
and Toronto, ONT. If you saw it, share your comments here:

A lack of leadership is no substitute for inaction.

Special thanks to R&W Rope Warehouse, Team McLube, and Newport Shipyard.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at