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SCUTTLEBUTT 2719 - Thursday, November 6, 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 Southern Spars and Ullman Sails.

While the Volvo Ocean Racing sailing teams are recovering from their first three
weeks at sea, and likely off discovering why Cape Town is South Africa’s most
popular tourist destination, the boats are in the hands of the shore team to
prepare them for the start of the 4,450nm second leg from Cape Town to Cochin,
India on November 15th. Here are some of the dockside reports:

* Ericsson 4 helmsman Tony Mutter has confirmed he has fully recovered from the
knee injury that saw him evacuated from the leg one winner a week out of
Alicante. The New Zealander was transferred to a fishing vessel and taken to
shore at Cape Verde seven days into the 6,500-nautical mile leg after developing
a serious infection in his left knee. “We never worked out what the infection
was,” he said. “It only responded to intravenous antibiotics – it was pretty
nasty. I’m glad I was able to get off at Cape Verde. If we had waited until
Fernando de Noronha (the next point of land en route, some four days away) I
would have been in a lot of trouble. You can get blood poisoning and that sort
of thing. Not good. Lose a leg kind of stuff.” -- Full report:

* Ericsson 3 took a large step towards achieving their potential by replacing
their non-compliant keel on Wednesday. The team were penalised to the tune of
one point per in-port race, one for each scoring gate and two for every leg
finish as a result of a pre-race verdict by the International Jury, who ruled in
Alicante that the team’s keel fin did not meet race rules. It has so far cost
the team four points – meaning they occupy sixth on the leaderboard with five
points instead of fifth – but now that bill will stop growing. -- Full report:

* Telefonica team shore manager Campbell Field suspects a collision was
responsible for the sheered rudder that wrecked the Black boat’s first leg to
Cape Town. Their bowsprit was ripped away as the boat subsequently lost control.
The team fell to last place as a result. Initially the crew offered few
suggestions of a collision, but Field confirmed that there was evidence of
impact once the boat was hauled from the water. Mark Bishop, a structural
engineer from Farr Yacht Design, has flown to South Africa in order to discuss
the performances of the team’s two boats, but Field said the trip was routine
and scheduled before the damage occurred. -- Full report:

Overall Leaderboard (Provisional)
1. Ericsson 4, 14 points
2. PUMA, 13 points
3. Green Dragon, 11 points
4. Telefónica Blue, 10 points
5. Telefónica Black, 7 points
6. Ericsson 3, 5 points*
7. Delta Lloyd, 4 points
8. Team Russia, 4 points
*Scoring penalty:

Unlike the Volvo Ocean Race, the Vendee Globe route will take the 30 entrants
and their Open 60s through the unforgiving Southern Ocean. However, the weather
forecast for the November 9th start in Les Sables d’Olonne, France is looking
like the first test may come out of the blocks:

* Sylvain Mondon, the Gitana Team weather expert, comments on the race start
forecast: “For the moment, it looks like being an upwind start in a
south-westerly blowing between 20 and 25 knots. Then, the wind is expected to
strengthen during the evening reaching an average of 30-35 knots. This disturbed
flow will be accompanied by heavy seas, with waves reaching 6 to 9 feet at the
start line. It is going to weed out the men from the boys from the outset!”

* French solo legend Isabelle Autissier regarding the Southern Ocean, that
unyielding span of torture that connects the tip of South Africa to Australasia:
"To go there alone you have to really love sailing, because it will hard to be
keep that love. The weather is bad, the sky is grey it is cold, the sea is rough
and you feel really far from the human race, mentally and physically. To go
through that kind of thing, you have to be cool headed, you simply have to be
happy to be there. It is not a matter of doing a race and wanting to win, you
have sometimes have to just find your own personal balance, that is the point."
Race website:

Southern Spars extends best wishes and fast sailing to all competing in the
Vendee Globe. This will be a race to watch with Barcelona World Race Winner,
Paprec-Virbac, embarking upon her second round-world voyage using the very same
Southern Spars mast and EC6+ rigging that helped her to glory. Also carrying
Southern Spars are: 2nd placed Barcelona World Race competitor and 24hr distance
record-holder Hugo Boss; Temenos II; Ecover 3; and sistership Aviva. Nonstop
singlehanded racing round-the-world presents one of the greatest challenges in
sport. For the ultimate in proven rig performance and endurance, Southern Spars
and EC6+ is the clear choice. To learn more:

Among the entrants that won’t be on the start line this weekend in Les Sables
d'Olonne, France for the Vendee Globe start is Bruce Schwab. When he crossed the
finish line of the 2004/5 race in 9th place, Schwab became the first American
ever to complete the grueling event, and had hoped to parlay that experience
with a new boat and another attempt.

Instead, Schwab and his Open 60 Ocean Planet arrived this week in Bermuda from
Newport, and will soon be on their way to Antigua where she will stay for the
season and maybe longer. Schwab plans to run some clinics and sail the events
around the Islands with sailors who are eager to get their hands on an Open 60
and are willing to pay for the opportunity.

Joining Schwab for the delivery to Bermuda was Dana Sibilla from Portland, OR:
“I deliberated on paying into the crew but I could see that this was really an
opportunity. Half of the fare was actually tax deductible to OP's non-profit
foundation. I did not have this laying around, but I realized that I could make
it happen. After emailing with Bruce, and hearing how down-to-Earth he was about
what was available, I was in. I could only swing the first leg (to Bermuda), and
then had to fly back to reality. Let's just say that this was going to be more
boat than I had recently gotten my hands on.”-- Read on for Dana’s detailed
report on the trip:

Stephanie Reuer, owner of the J/35 Dakota Girl, thinks she might be the only
racing skipper on the Bay who’s sung opera on stage at the Kennedy Center with
Placido Domingo. Having grown up in South Dakota catching walleye on the
Missouri River with her dad, she feels at home on the water. A career in
international trade and a masters in opera performance led her to the
Washington, DC area, where she launched a career in trade compliance and sang
part-time for a decade with the Washington National Opera Company. Still working
as a self-proclaimed “regulatory nerd” and having just moved to a new home in
Annapolis from Deale, MD, Reuer has traded in her passion for singing for

“I didn’t step foot on a boat until I was 34,” she says, and she bought her
first boat the next year. “I fell completely in love with it.” That she didn’t
start racing until six years later is, “Proof that life does begin at 40.” After
crewing for several years and racing her own PHRF boats, she listened to the
gentle nudging of her boyfriend Randy Bruscup on the benefits of one-design
racing and eventually chose the J/35 for the affordability, the competitive
fleet, and the support of the class. Not having a boat mortgage has enabled her
to hire professional coaches and ramp up her team more quickly. She says, “We
have received a lot of advice, coaching, and moral support over the last two
years from each and every J/35 program, especially from the team leaders:
Maggie, Windependent, Aunt Jean, Medicine Man, and others.” -- SpinSheet, read

(Nov. 5, 2008) The Landing School in Kennebunkport, Maine, is collaborating with
the International Lightning Class Association to build two fiberglass Lightnings
in the spring of 2009 as part of its 10-month-long Composites Program. Ten
students will be breaking into two teams beginning in January to loft, build and
fit out two hulls as part of their lab-based education in composites.

The current school-year, which began in September, is the second year of the
Composites Program at The Landing School, a post-secondary, accredited
educational institution that trains men and women in boatbuilding, yacht design,
marine systems and composites. Students in the full-time program divide their
days between classroom-based theory lectures and lab-based, hands-on work. The
Lightnings will be a significant piece of the lab curriculum, filling 800 hours
of training.

The Lightning was selected as the boat model for the Composites Program because
the class’s precise measurements are strict enough to challenge the students to
demonstrate their very best craftsmanship. The hulls will not be built
production-style out of female molds; instead the hulls and decks will be built
using various one-off methods from wet layup to vacuum-bagging to pre-preg.
After the boats’ launchings in June, both hulls will be measured and certified
by the International Lightning Class Association. -- Read on:

Last weekend, San Diego played host to the longstanding tradition of the
Acapulco Challenge, an annual regatta where Club de Yachtes de Acapulco and San
Diego Yacht Club each provide four teams to compete in a two-day battle. The
American team on Beneteau 40.7 “Drumshanbo” took top honors in the international
fleet, claiming first overall with an 8-point cushion ahead of second place.
“Drumshanbo” was powered by 100% Ullman Sails inventory, showing superior speed
across the wind range. The eight teams competed on four Beneteau 40.7s and four
J/120s in an uncharacteristically shifty breeze. Visit Ullman Sails at

Organizers of US SAILING's Rolex International Women's Keelboat Championship
(IWKC) have announced a change in venue and dates for the next running of this
biennial regatta. Due to the impact of September's Hurricane Ike on the greater
Houston area, including the Galveston Bay communities of Clear Lake, Kemah, La
Porte and Shoreacres, where the Houston Yacht Club (HYC) is situated, the
organizing committee made the difficult decision to pass the helm to another
club and not host the 2009 regatta. The new host is Rochester Yacht Club (RYC),
N.Y., and the new dates for the event are October 7-10, 2009.

Four days of racing on Lake Ontario will be preceded by the Next Step to Rolex
program, a developmental program for girls age 13-17 that seeks to offer
keelboat training in a mentoring atmosphere, and two days of boat measurement
and registration on Oct. 4-5. Presenting the RYC bid was Cory Sertl (Rochester,
N.Y.), who said, “The Rochester Yacht Club membership has always had an interest
in hosting the Rolex Women's Keelboat. In fact, Helen Ingerson from RYC is
credited, along with Ann Connor of Newport, with creating the concept of an
international regatta specifically for women. It is in her honor that we made
the bid and accepted it.” -- Complete report:

With the 2nd edition of the Desafío Trophy approaching on November 8-9, and the
four participating teams - Alinghi (SUI), Desafío (ESP), Team Origin (GBR), and
Luna Rossa (ITA) - training on Valencia's waters again in America’s Cup class
Version 5 boats, Team Origin Director Mike Sanderson comments about the British
challenger and the America’s Cup in general:

* Who should we then blame for the current situation? BMW Oracle or Alinghi?
SANDERSON: I’m sure there is a lot of things people would have done differently
if they knew how messy this would have turned out, from both sides. I think
that’s all there is to say. On reflection, both of the teams involved in the
legal action wouldn’t have done it the way they have done it, had they had the
time again. It is positive what’s going on at the moment, it’s very positive
that Team New Zealand dropped their lawsuit and now Alinghi is coming to the
regatta in Auckland. We are starting to get some good momentum. It’s going to be
tough for BMW Oracle to say that what is being discussed isn’t fair if 12-13
teams are sorting out that themselves.

* Another measure to lower costs is to allow one boat per team. Up to what point
should the Defender participate in the Challenger Selection Series?
SANDERSON: The fact of the matter is that the 12 teams that challenged under the
33rd Protocol always knew the Defender would be racing in the Challenger Series.
It’s hard to grizzle about it now. Yes, I might not always agree on pretty much
all the protocol issues, but Alinghi have now agreed to discuss everything. In
that statement they covered the protocol, the event regulations, the commercial
regulations and the rule. They are saying that if things need to be changed and
everybody agrees then they will change them. I’m not sure what more can anyone
ask for now. -- Valencia Sailing, full interview:

=> Curmudgeon’s Comments: Ed Baird and Paul Cayard have been absent from the
training in Valencia due to their attendance at the Musto Scuttlebutt Sailing
Club Championship Regatta and Bitter End YC’s Pro Am Regatta in the BVI. Tough
life, but someone’s got to live it:

* (Nov. 5, 2008) - BMW Oracle Racing refused to drop its lawsuit delaying the
next America's Cup until defending champion Alinghi formally amends rules that
the challenger said will lead to an ``unfair'' competition. Alinghi and 10
challengers last week appealed to BMW-Oracle to drop its 16-month-old lawsuit in
the New York State Supreme Court. The dispute between BMW-Oracle's billionaire
owner, Larry Ellison, and Alignhi's Swiss billionaire backer Ernesto Bertarelli
has delayed another edition of the 157-year-old event. -- Bloomberg, full

* (Nov 5, 2008; 21:20 GMT) The racing continues to be unbelievably close in the
Portimão Global Ocean Race among the doublehanded Class 40 Chilean entry Desafio
Cabo de Hornos and its class rival, the British Team Mowgli as they race neck
and neck through the South Atlantic. Currently only three miles ahead with
2353nm to go before Cape Town, Desafio Cabo de Hornos trails class leader Beluga
Racer by 463nm, but slower speeds for the leader may help to narrow the gap. --

* The 2008 ISAF Annual Conference in Madrid, Spain commences on Friday November
7th and wraps up with the General Assembly on Saturday November 15th. Six
Canadian Delegates will be covering everything from Measurement Meetings, Youth
and Development, Class rules, Regional Games, Offshore Sailing and naturally the
efforts of the catamaran sailors as they try to get a catamaran event into the
2012 Olympic Games. Attendees include Bill Abbott from Sarnia ON, Will Apold
from Halifax NS, David Covo from Montreal QC, CYA President Gerry Giffin from
Chester NS, Peter Hall from Montreal QC, Fiona Kidd from Toronto and David
Sprague from Toronto. --

* Over 4.6 million voters in Florida yesterday gave a 70.5 per cent vote in
favour of Amendment 6, the constitutional amendment backed by that state's
marine industry to change the way marine businesses are taxed. The amendment
needed 60 per cent of Floridians voting to approve it. State and local
authorities will now tax marinas, boatyards, boat dealerships and other marine
businesses on "current use" standards rather than at their "highest and best"
potential use, the taxing policy which has increasingly come into practice after
new waterfront hotel or condominium complexes inflated local coastal property
values. -- IBI Magazine, read on:

* During the 2007 US SAILNG Annual Appeal, nearly 550 members contributed
$132,000, which then enabled US SAILING to help fund qualifying youth sailors to
participate in US SAILING events as well as the ISAF Youth Worlds in Denmark;
publish Learn Sailing Right, an innovative new learn-to-sail book; provide
needed financial support to disabled sailing programs nationwide; and create a
new “Handy Guide” simplifying the 2009-2012 Racing Rules of Sailing. This year’s
Annual Appeal funds are earmarked to fund free-of-charge training for youth,
collegiate, and young adult sailors to become certified Race Officials, Judges
and Umpires. -- Details:

A massive year long birthday bash is planned for 2009 to celebrate Bermuda's
400th anniversary. July 28, 2009 marks four hundred years since the Sea Venture
wrecked on Bermuda's shores during a violent storm. The Sea Venture was part of
a flotilla on its way to repopulate the starving British colony of Jamestown,
Virginia. "We are going to be celebrating Bermuda and her people for the entire
year," said committee chairman Conchita Ming. "We want people to embrace that

"In keeping with the theme of celebrating Bermuda and Her People, we are looking
at the wreck of the Sea Venture as the starting off point to tell the story of
Bermuda," said Mr. Holmes. "But it is not the 400th celebration of the wreck of
the Sea Venture. It is about the 400 years that followed. It is about how
Bermuda started from there. It is about the struggles and triumphs we went
through to get to here. So it won't be so focused on the Sea Venture. It is
about the journey we have been through." Celebrations kick off on January 3, on
the heels of New Years. -- The Royal Gazette, complete story:

Exceptions prove the rule and wreck the budget.

Special thanks to Southern Spars and Ullman Sails.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at