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SCUTTLEBUTT 2710 - Friday, October 24, 2008

Scuttlebutt is published each weekday with the support of its sponsors,
providing a digest of major sailing news, commentary, opinions, features and
dock talk . . . with a North American focus.

Today's sponsors are O’pen BIC and J World San Diego.

(Oct. 23, 2008; Day 13) - Remember Wednesday’s Volvo Ocean Race tactics
lesson? When the Scuttlebutt crew signed off in the evening, Green Dragon
had 118 nm to go before they got to the Fernando de Noronha scoring gate,
and a left shift was lifting the lead pack up to the mark after being just
shy of layline all day on a port tack close hauled angle. We determined that
GD would be safe with the shift, but that PUMA would suffer… and that is
what happened. Of course, when everybody is bashing upwind in 20-25 knots
winds, it is safe to say that there is no shortage of suffering going on.

Green Dragon was first to the gate at 12:24 GMT, and it was Ericsson 4 that
beat out PUMA to round in second place at 13:59. Ken Read's men rounded at
14:16, with Telefonica Black making a huge rally to get there by 14:48. From
the points awarded during the In-Port race and at the scoring gate, these
boats are party to a five-way tie at the top of the overall points standings
with Telefonica Blue included.

So what happened today? The wind has remained at around 130 degrees, and
everyone has been on port tack, with the idea to stay west but further south
to avoid the South Atlantic High. What is interesting to note is that once
E4 got through the scoring gate, they look to have sheeted out to sail a
lower (but hopefully) faster angle. So far they have paid for this move, as
it has dropped them down to fourth in the standings. The general idea is
that as the fleet gets further south, the wind will continue to back around
to the north, helping them to aim toward the finish at Cape Town. That would
be nice, because right now their bearing to the Cape is about 125 degrees,
and so is the wind.

The length of Leg One is 6500nm, with teams expected to finish by the first
week in November. Current standings (as of Oct. 24, 1:00am GMT):
1. Green Dragon, Ian Walker, 3294 nm distance to finish
2. Puma, Ken Read, 5 nm distance to lead
3. Telefonica Black, Fernando Echavarri, 8 nm DTL
4. Ericsson 4, Torben Grael, 19 nm DTL
5. Telefonica Blue, Bouwe Bekking, 34 nm DTL
6. Ericsson 3, Anders Lewander, 56 nm DTL
7. Delta Lloyd, Ger O'Rourke, 57 nm DTL
8. Team Russia, Andreas Hanakamp, 106 nm DTL
Race website:

* For anyone that has not previously crossed the equator, it is tradition
that a ceremony by King Neptune must be conducted. This typically involves
varying degrees of public embarrassment, and this video provides footage of
the festivities onboard PUMA. For anyone who has had problems with the race
website viewer, here is the video on YouTube:

* The VOR standings get updated every three hours, and are based on
Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Scuttlebutt is typically published at +/- 6:00pm
Pacific Time (San Diego, CA), which equates to 1:00am GMT - also one of the
time that the standings are refreshed. Whenever possible, Scuttlebutt will
attempt to provide the most recent standings at the time of publication.

(Oct. 23, 2008) - Renowned non-profit organizations, Sailors for the Sea and
the Pacific Science Center, today announced a one-year environmental sailing
expedition and circumnavigation around-the-Americas. To launch this
education-based voyage and awareness project, Sailors for the Sea, a
national organization co-founded by David Rockefeller, Jr. that educates and
empowers the boating community to protect and restore our oceans and coastal
waters, has partnered with the Pacific Science Center, a Seattle-based
science foundation and nationally recognized leader in informal science and
environment education.

"North and South America are surrounded by a large, complex, and
frighteningly fragile ocean environment -- and these oceans are changing in
large part as a result of human activity," said Rockefeller, president of
the board, Sailors for the Sea founder, and member of the Pew Ocean
Commission. "The goal of this expedition is to build broad awareness among
everyday citizens of the precipitous changes occurring throughout the
world's oceans and the impact these changes have on various ecosystems and
human life." -- Read on:

* Joining the crew will be journalist Herb McCormick, whose work is
frequently profiled in Scuttlebutt, and will be charged with providing
reports during this journey. Beginning in Seattle in May 2009, the crew will
travel north through the formerly icebound Northwest Passage and continue
along the coast, making 30 ports-of-call throughout the Americas before
returning to Seattle in Spring 2010.

Sailing in the desert? No, it's not a mirage. Since 1958, sailing
enthusiasts in Arizona have been members of the Arizona Yacht Club. The
founder, Ruth Beals, was the first sailboat dealer in Arizona. In summer
1958, she set up shop on the north side of Indian School Road at about 22nd
Street. As she was selling boats, Beals took names and information of people
who expressed interest in being members of a yacht club. By that December,
the club had 17 members and three boats. Other boaters could join for $1 at
a card table set up on the shore of Saguaro Lake.

Early activities centered on taking non-boat owners for rides - boats were
sparse in the Valley at the time - and to prove one could actually sail in
the desert. Within a few years, the club had grown to 125 members with
activities on Tempe Town Lake and Lake Pleasant in the greater Phoenix area.
Celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, "the Arizona Yacht Club is a
racing, cruising, educational and social sailing club made up of more than
250 Arizona families," said Ranay Yarian, its membership coordinator. --
Complete story:

* Also coming from the area is the Arizona State University Sailing Club,
which was originally launched in 2003, and sails in the races at Arizona
Yacht Club on Tempe Town Lake in Tempe, AZ. The club began competing on the
collegiate racing circuit in 2007, most recently making a trip to San Diego
last weekend for a Freshman/Sophomore regatta. --

Sailing Programs world-wide are discovering they need something modern to
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(Oct. 23, 2008) - The battle for the initiative over the future of the
America's Cup switches to Geneva next week as the defender, Alinghi, hosts
on Thursday the first of two meetings for entered challengers at its
sponsoring Societe Nautique de Geneve. Significantly, the California-based
would-be challenger, Larry Ellison's BMW Oracle, is not on the guest list
and, significantly, all those potential challengers for America's Cup 33 are
being asked to sign up with a 15 December deadline, long before any outcome
is known about the New York Appeals Court case being brought by BMW Oracle
against Alinghi.

The first meeting, to be led by Alinghi skipper Brad Butterworth and design
co-ordinator Tom Schnackenberg, would concentrate on the possible design of
a new boat for an America's Cup in 2010. But it is only one of a series of
proposals, expected to be discussed more widely at the second meeting on 11
November that may include discussions on the protocol that sets out the
conditions for the next cup. Butterworth has said that Alinghi is "open to
change things in the protocol; if there is a problem, we'll rectify that."
-- by Stuart Alexander, The Independent, read on:

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: I am not much of a card player, but given how the
Alinghi team is closing entries for the America’s Cup on December 15th, and
will only accept entries from BMW Oracle Racing and Emirates Team New
Zealand if they abandon their respective legal proceedings (which won’t be
resolved in the courts by then), I’d say the Swiss just called their bluff,
and that these two challengers will either need to go “all in” or fold.

(Oct. 23, 2008; 13:30 GMT) - The 99ft monohull maxi-yacht Virgin Money
(ex-Speedboat owned by Alex Jackson, USA) is now in the second day for its
attempt to break the world record for crossing the Atlantic Ocean, currently
set at 6 days 17 hours, 39 minutes and 52 seconds. After 27 hrs 50 mins, the
team has covered 500 miles. No data is being provided regarding how the
team’s current pace matches up with the current record, but with a heading
of 98 degrees, and a wind direction of 356 degrees, time will tell if the
wind is aft enough to provide sufficient speed to set a new record.

Winds were in the mid-20s today, but the team was preparing for a forecast
of up to 50 knots. Skipper Mike Sanderson said, “We are having a pretty
rough trip out here but we need to get some sleep before it gets even more
heinous tonight. Surviving on three hours sleep is not easy when you’re
getting battered on all sides by the elements.” Commented crew Adam Boome,
“At the moment we’re really motoring … Imagine living on the waltzers at the
fairground during a freezing storm and you’re almost there. Even the
smallest task takes intense concentration and is very physically demanding.
Can’t imagine how we will feel if this goes on for another 5 days, right up
to the wire.” -- Full report:

Lanzarote, Canary Islands (Oct. 23, 2008) - To say the long coastal race of
the TP52 World Championship Islas Canarias Puerto Calero was exciting would
be a major understatement. While the start of the week offered us light and
shifty conditions, Lanzarote’s true breeze made its majestic entrance today.
After yesterday’s short coastal race, the 14-strong TP52 fleet sailed the
long one, approximately 53 miles long, in less than 5 hours under conditions
that offered accidents, breakages, disqualifications and lots of emotion.
The northern breeze blew with an intensity of 20 to 25 knots throughout the
race and gusts reaching 35 knots on the western coast of the island.

After getting fouled at the initial weather mark rounding, Paul Cayard’s
Desafío team worked their way into third, and were now looking at a 10 mile
run and then a short fetch to the finish. Recalled Cayard, “The current was
going against the 25 knots + wind and the waves were short and steep. The TP
52's dig their bows in rather badly and actually aren't as fun as you would
think to sail in these conditions. The bow is burying continuously despite
having the entire crew planted on the transom. We left out jib up the whole
run so as not to have to deal with people on the bow or the sail getting
washed overboard. There were two gybes on the run in which where both rather
difficult to execute but we managed to keep the boat upright through it all.
Quantum exploded their spinnaker three-quarters of the way down and we
closed in and passed Platoon to round the mark in first!” Racing continues
on Friday and Saturday with four W/L races planned

Current standings (top 5 of 14)
1. Quantum (USA), Terry Hutchinson, 2-6-1-4-6-2.50-2.50, 24.00 points
2. Mutua Madrileña (CHI), Vasco Vascotto, 3-1-6-1-1-8.75-10, 32.00 points
3. Artemis (SWE), Torbjorn Tornqvist, 1-2-2-11-13-1.25-10, 40.25 points
4. Desafío (ESP), Paul Cayard, 5-7-11-12-2-5-1.25, 43.25 points
5. Platoon (GER), Jochen Schuemann, 8-9-12-3-3-6.25-3.75, 45.00 points
Complete report and standings:

J World San Diego, the Performance Sailing School, is looking for a sailing
instructor. J World has consistently been rated the best sailing school in
America by Practical Sailor magazine. Those interested in joining J World
must have exceptional inter-personal and communication skills. In addition,
they must also have excellent sailing skills, strong theoretical knowledge,
and solid cruising or racing experience. US SAILING instructor certification
is preferred, as well as USCG licensing, although not required. J World
benefits may include health insurance, professional dues, and merchandise
discounts, not to mention the opportunity to sail year round! Please contact
us at 619-224-4774 or visit us at

* (Oct. 23, 2008) - Vendee Globe entrant Hugo Boss came under the knife this
morning as the six strong team of boatbuilders got to work on cutting away
the damaged area of Alex Thomson’s wounded Open 60. This follows the
collision last Friday with a fishing boat that damaged the boat and broke
the mast. David Duff, Shore Operations Manager for Team ORIGIN, who is
helping with the logistics and project management of the repair reported
today that the new replacement panel should arrive this evening from Vannes.
Their operational target is to re-step the mast Friday 31st with the
objective of sailing again Sat 1st November. -- Full report:

* Kingston is making a pitch to be the host city for the sailing events in
Toronto's bid for the 2015 Pan American Games. Bid chair David Peterson, the
former Ontario premier, and bid president-COO Jagoda Pike are expected to
finalize venues for all sports before submitting the official bid in April.
The Pan American Sports Organization will vote on the 2015 host for the
event - which will involve athletes from 42 countries in the Americas and
the Caribbean - next summer or fall. Bogota, Colombia, and Lima, Peru, are
competing against Toronto for the event. -- Full story:

* An estimated 51,000 people attended this year's U.S. Sailboat Show, down
about 2 percent from last year's record attendance, said Ed Hartman,
president of the United States Yacht Shows Inc., who has organized
Annapolis' boat shows for the past 37 years. About 33,000 attended the U.S.
Powerboat Show (the following week), about a 15 percent slip from last year.
-- Baltimore Sun, full story:

* Sarasota, FL - The city wants to triple the annual lease it charges the
Sarasota Sailing Squadron, an increase of $90,000. To pay City Hall, board
members at the sailing club say they would have to increase membership and
other fees from an average of $250 a year to $350 a year. Fearful that the
increase will threaten the club's role as the last remaining haven for local
sailors who want to get on the water without paying a lot, board members are
arguing their case with city commissioners. -- Herald Tribune, read on:

* CORRECTION: The Curmudgeon’s Observation from Scuttlebutt 2709 has proven
once again that ‘only’ and ‘never’ are fighting words:

THE GOOD: West Marine, the country’s largest specialty retailer of boating
supplies and accessories, announced the grand opening of its newest location
in San Carlos, California on November 15-16, 2008. The 13,000 square foot
will enjoy grand opening festivities begin at 8 a.m. on Saturday, November
15, 2008 and refreshments (including free hot dogs & sodas!) will be served
from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., while supplies last. The celebration continues all
weekend with special discounts and prize giveaways, including $100 West
Marine gift cards, GPS units and more. -- Map:

THE BAD: West Marine reported sales of US$180.2 million for its quarter
ended September 29, 2007, compared to US$188.4 million for the same period a
year ago. Its net income for the quarter fell to US$3.42 million compared to
US$6.16 million a year ago. Same-store sales were off by 4.7 per cent. "We
do expect continued softness in our industry in the near term, and our
updated expectations reflect additional gross profit pressures as we adjust
promotion levels and reduce inventory purchases," said Geoff Eisenberg, CEO.
"Our planning for next year reflects sizing the company for the realities of
the current market, while continuing to invest prudently in the future."
Eisenberg said he expects 2009 to remain "tough for boating." -- IBI
Magazine, full report:

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 Manfred C. Schreiber, Germany: (re, George Albaughs letter in Sbutt
2708): No dinghies at Annapolis Boat Show... George is right on spot, me
thinks. The same applied to the Newport Boat Show which I attended. No
dinghies besides Laser and RS cruising dinghies. In Germany, at the two most
important boat shows we have big dinghy sections with displays of boats and
manned by the class authorities which are sponsored by the boat show
organizations. There is also a well attended dinghy party sponsored by one
of the sailing mags. Free drinks and food of course. This party is being
held in the middle of national and international skiffs and dinghies and it
is always packed with folks. Great atmosphere and definitely pulling people
into dinghy sailing from all corners. Kudos to the "hanseboot" in Hamburg
and the "boot" in Düsseldorf for making the boatshows interesting for a
broader range of people. For bringing the dinghy enthusiasts together to
discuss and put on display their boats in the best possible manner. Maybe
someone just needs to tell them.

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: At the Annapolis show there is no “dinghy area” but
rather they are scattered throughout the foot print. PS2000 always has a
great display, nearby is the Flying Scot, the O’pen BIC and Pixel are some
distance down the aisle, LaserPerformance has their menu in the water, and
the RS and CL boats are at the opposite end. The difference also is there
are only manufacturer classes, and no ODs with multiple builders. No
Lightnings, 505s, Thistles, Snipes, etc., and definitely no beach cats or
windsurfers. The sport boats were brought together this year with positive
effect. Maybe 2009 will bring the dinghy displays together too.

The Scuttlebutt newsletter provides a limited amount of text ad slots in
each issue, and these are often sold out well in advance. Most of the ad
slots for 2009 will be booked in the next few months, so if you are
interested in advertising, but always had heard how hard it was to get on
the schedule… think again. Ad placement for 2009 is now available; contact
Craig Leweck for details: 619-299-5678 or

You might be a sailing bum if you've ever been involved in a fight over the
last chocolate chip cookie.

Special thanks to O’pen BIC and J World San Diego.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at