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SCUTTLEBUTT 2727 - Tuesday, November 18, 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 Camet, Doyle Sails, and Laser Performance.

Can a sport get too professional? Can the pursuit of money ruin the traditions
of sport? Talking to The NZ Herald, Bruno Trouble cites this effect as one of
the reasons Louis Vuitton pulled out of the Americas Cup - but now they are

Louis Vuitton are back in the "America's Cup world", as trouble calls it, and
the best field of match-racing skippers seen since the Cup regatta in 2003 is
set to take off in the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series in Auckland in the new year.

"We [Vuitton] left the America's Cup because of the relationship with ACM - they
were too commercial, too interested in money and the budget for 2007 was 10
times what it had been for the regatta here in New Zealand in 2003 [400m euro as
opposed 40 million]," he says.

"We were not getting 10 times the return on investment. Valencia was a big local
success and you will read stories about the millions of Spanish people who went
there - but they went there to lick ice cream and look at the facilities. They
were not really interested in the regatta." - Read on:

Hear Trouble interviewed on NewsTalk NZ:

* AC China Team has announced that 2007 World Match Racing Champion Ian Williams
has signed on to be the new skipper of China Team America's Cup program for the
Louis Vuitton Pacific Series in Auckland, New Zealand, in 2009. With his 2007
title Williams became the first Englishman to win the World Match Racing Tour
title in the event's 19 year history. He is at the top of the leaderboard again
in 2008, as the Tour heads to its final event in Malaysia in December, and is
ranked Number Two in the world by the International Sailing Federation. -
Valencia Sailing, full story:

By Cory Friedman, America's Cup legal analyst
Anyone who has ever fouled another boat with a sloppily set sail or sheet,
missed a shift or a layline, blown a tack, missed a hiking strap and gone MOB,
sailed over a spinnaker, or seen an adversary do any of those things, knows that
there are plenty of ways to blow a race. Sometimes playing it too safe is the
way to lose. The same is true in litigation and Golden Gate Yacht Club (GGYC)
may be set to blow this one. It is not that Societe Nautique de Geneve (SNG) is
doing anything particularly brilliant, but by treating the edge as if it does
not exist, SNG seems to be doing a terrific job of forcing GGYC errors in the
medal round of the America's Cup litigation in the New York Court of Appeals. --
Read on:

More than 100 one-design sailors and class and fleet leaders traveled from
across the country to Atlanta Yacht Club in Acworth, Ga., last weekend to attend
US Sailing's One-Design Sailing Symposium. They came from more than 30
one-design classes and more than 20 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands to
participate in seminars and workshops, including presentations by sailing
experts Dave Perry, Greg Fisher, Skip Dieball, Mike Ingham, Craig Leweck, and
many more. In addition to seminars and workshops, US Sailing presented their
major awards to one-design sailors and organizations:
* One-Design Service Award: Paul White
* One-Design Leadership Award: Bill Brosius
* One-Design Club of the Year: Clear Lake Yacht Club
* One-Design Regatta: Hobie Cat 40th Anniversary Regatta
* One-Design Creativity Award: Max Hinneberg

Read the full report:

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For the navigators, picking the lock of the tactical conundrum of this leg lay
in the decision to go north. PUMA's Andrew Cape was first to break from the
pack. The shoe boat spent three and a half hours on port gybe before gybing back
again. Andreas Hanakamp on Team Russia and Roberto Bermudez, new to the helm of
Delta Lloyd followed PUMA's lead and gybed north as well. For now at least, PUMA's
long-term romancing of Ericsson 4 was officially over. Torben Grael's men are
now the most-southerly of the fleet - a trial separation of 75 miles from Ken
Read. The divorce courts await.

Conditions have progressively worsened on board as the Southern Ocean makes its
presence felt. Ian Walker's Green Dragon took the brunt of it. "I was just
getting my waterproofs on down below when there was a huge bang and the boat
went into an involuntary Chinese gybe," Walker reported. "Everyone was harnessed
on and everything secure so no harm was done. Fortunately the only real cost was
perhaps 5-10 miles and we are now back up and running with another bar story to

Standings (as of 1:00 a.m. GMT Tuesday)
1. PUMA, Ken Read/USA, 3755 nm to finish
2. Telefónica Blue, Bouwe Bekking, +5 nm
3. Telefónica Black, Fernando Echávarri, +7 nm
4. Ericsson 3, Anders Lewander, +36 nm
5. Green Dragon, Ian Walker, +39 nm
6. Ericsson 4, Torben Grael, +49 nm to leader
7. Delta Lloyd, Roberto Bermudez, +61 nm
8. Team Russia, Andreas Hanakamp, +99 nm
Race website:

*A small low has upset the trade winds and forced Thomas Coville, the skipper of
Sodeb'O, to postpone the departure of his solo round-the-world record attempt
for 24 hours. Because the weather models now confirm a drop in pressure between
the Canaries and the Cape Verde archipelago at the point where Coville has
planned to traverse, the departure of Sodeb'O was delayed until Wednesday. To
beat record held since 20th January 2008 by Francis Joyon, Coville will have to
return to Brest in less than 57 days, 13 hours, 34 minutes and 6 seconds.

* Vestas Sailrocket will make its first WSSRC ratified attempt on the outright
world speed sailing record for a 28 day period commencing on the 23rd of
November. The radical UK designed and built boat is currently based in Walvis
Bay, Namibia and will use the steady local winds and flat seas to make her
attempt. After over four years of development and evolution, the team behind the
Vestas Sailrocket project feel that the time is right to step in the ring
against the official clock in the form of a WSSRC ratified world record attempt.
Take a look at this monster:

The crucial Cape Verde strategies among the top five boats resulted in lead
changes at every roll call on Monday. As Loïck Peyron (Gitana Eighty) gybes --
seeking some westing to line up for the Doldrums and cover the advances from his
western flank -- Dick, Riou and Le Cléac'h all made 26-28 miles on the lead.
Jean Le Cam (VM Materiaux) takes back the lead in the east, now calculated to be
13 miles ahead of Peyron, but now that becomes something of a moot point. He is
merely closer to the theoretical rhumb line, which does not take any account of
the most favorable crossing point of the Doldrums.

Standings at 2000 GMT Monday, Day 8 (26 competitors remaining):
1. Jean Le Cam (VM Matériaux) 21386 miles to finish
2. Loïck Peyron (Gitana Eight) +13 nm to leader
3. Seb Josse (BT) +30.9 nm
4. Jean.Pierre Dick (Paprec.Virbac 2) +55 nm
5. Vincent Riou (PRB) +59 nm
12. Sam Davies, (ROXY) +252 nm
16. Dee Caffari, (AVIVA) +399 nm
20. Rich Wilson, (Great America III) +631 nm
25. David Hatfield, (Algimouss Spirit of Canada) +1695nm
Event website:

Doyle Sailmaker's Jud Smith, who made the 2008 Yngling Olympic medal sails, has
now set his sights on sail development in the Star class. The Star was just
selected for the men's keelboat in the 2012 Olympics. Using his latest radial
main design, Jud recently teamed up with Stuart DeLisser to win the Schoonmaker
Cup in Miami. Visit for the latest news and take
advantage of our one design fall discounts and internet specials.

* The much-awaited Royal Decree from the Spanish central government was signed
and published on Friday afternoon. The cabinet approved the extension of the tax
and fiscal measures for another year and as a result all America's Cup teams
based in Valencia will practically pay no taxes at all. According to the decree,
the teams are exempt, in 2008, of income and social security taxes as well as
the VAT (value added tax). In other words, Valencia is for the fifth consecutive
year a tax-free city for the America's Cup teams. Valencia Sailing, read on:

* North Sails is closing their Mississauga, Canada production and finishing loft
in an effort to help control the rising costs of shipping and freight within
North America. "We recently expanded our 3DL facility and added a 10,000 square
foot state-of-the-art finishing floor, which allows more sails to be finished in
Minden, saving both time and money," explained Gary Weisman, president of North
Sails. North's local sales office, also located in Mississauga, will remain open
with expanded sail care facilities. Also, the company's production and finishing
facilities in Milford, CT and Stevensville, MD will remain open with expanded
workloads. --

* Paul Callahan continued on his winning ways in the Sonar fleet dominating the
America's Disabled Open Regatta at St. Petersburg Yacht Club this past weekend.
In stiff competition, which included Paralympians Rick Doerr (USA) and John
Twomey (IRL), Callahan scored five bullets out of eight races with a total of 10
points for the regatta. In the 2.4 metre class, Henrik Dannesboe (SUI) edged out
Paralympian 2008 Bronze Medalist John Ruf (USA) for top honors with 12 and 13
points, respectively. The regatta was open to both able bodied and disabled
sailors and sailed in a wide range of conditions. --

* Hall Spars & Rigging announced at the METS trade show in Amsterdam the release
of SCR 35, their new seamless carbon standing rigging product. -- Details:

* The hot and dry Santa Ana winds whipped up wild fires inland and held the sea
breeze at bay during San Diego Yacht Club's One Design Weekend, which doubled as
the Etchells Class 2008 Pacific Coast Championship. There were 27 boats on the
line and San Diego Fleet Captain, Chris Busch, sailing four-up with Chuck Sinks,
Chad Hough and David Hughes racked up five points in the five-race, one-discard
series to hold off Vince Brun, Benny Mitchell, Will Stout and Steve Pickel who
posted nine points for the series. Only 14 points separated the next 10
places. - Full story:

* Now in its 23rd year, the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC) has attracted 220
yachts representing 21 nations, and with 25 nationalities across 1,100 crews.
The World Cruising Club, the organizers of the ARC, is currently gearing up for
the departure of this year's fleet from Las Palmas de Gran Canaria on Sunday 23
November. The destination is Rodney Bay Marina in St Lucia, a distance of 2,680
nautical miles from Las Palmas and it's a passage that will take most of the
yachts between 18 and 21 days. Conceived and often described as 'a friendly
race' for cruising yachts to make the Atlantic crossing both safer and more
enjoyable. --

Match racing is on this winter at the Miami OCR, and the US Sailing OCR
committee chose the SB3 Match as equipment. The SB3 is a fast, tactically
challenging, and proven design well suited for this all women's event. Visit the
events page at to learn more.

* A clinic on Jan 21-23 led by Dave Perry is for any woman match racer or
3-women team, hosted in Miami by SailLaser at the US Sailing Training Center in
SB3 Match sailboats. --

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 Dieter Loibner: If 6 of 10 sailing events at the 2012 Games will use
equipment that was designed 42 to 102 years earlier, while the multihull and a
skiff for the women's doublehander had been ditched, how does that define
progress? In my book it doesn't, but it provides historical perspective when you
consider what else happened in the years when Star, Finn 470 and the Laser came
off the drawing boards. A sampling:

1910: Star, designed by Francis Sweisguth; Thomas Crapper, inventor of the flush
toilet dies, Russia absorbs Finland, and Mother Teresa was born.

1949: Finn Dinghy, designed by Rickard Sarby; Canada beats Denmark 47-0 in
hockey, East Germany was created (NATO, too) and there were 98 TV stations in
the US.

1963: 470, designed by Andre Cornu; Martin Luther King delivered "I have a
dream" speech, JFK was assassinated, Peter, Paul and Mary recorded Bob Dylan's
Blowin' in the Wind.

1970: Laser, designed by Bruce Kirby; Aswan Dam (Egypt) finished, US troops
invaded Cambodia, and Pele-led Brazil won the Soccer World Cup in Mexico.

* From Morgan Larson (re 'Missed Opportunity? - 'Butt 2725) Well said Andy Rice!
I agree with you, let's see who voted for the 29er xx and who voted for the 470!
The one thing Mr. Suter, Mr. Fox and all of the other skiff critics have in
common, none of them have ever sailed one. If you dig up some history you will
find these guys spent some time on the wire of a skiff: Cayard, Coutts, Baylis
(both), Murray, Beashel, Hall, McKee (both), Nicholson, Lewis, Burnham, Bruni,
Hamlin. Some day it might be about the good of the sport -- not a sport of

* From Bill Canfield, St. Thomas (Re Comments On Andy Rice Missed Opportunity?):
I read Mr. Rice's comments and pose two questions and a comment. If skiffs are
so popular why do they draw the fewest country entries at the Olympics of all
men's classes? When and where is next competitive woman's skiff regatta - I must
have missed that NOR? Maybe we should respect wisdom not speed in choosing
skiffs that are predominantly lay-line boats over the more tactical 470 that
draws the 2nd most countries after the laser family to the Games.

* From Willii Gohl: Dear sailing friends, complaining about ISAF council´s
decision to use the 470 instead the 29XX for the 2012 Olympics. Why are you
complaining now? Firstly, it was last year´s decision not to vote for a women's´
high performance dinghy, but for match race and a double handed dinghy. So 29XX
was out last year, not this year! All forgotten about that? Secondly, have a
look around the world: how many competitors do you have in 470 girls fleet? How
many do you have in 29XX fleets? Especially in the smaller and developing
countries? What is the olympic task for chosen classes? Think about that
first -and then complain -or not.

* John Roberson, Australia (re; the confusion about who holds the record for the
youngest person to do a global circumnavigation - 'Butt 2725): My understanding
is that Jesse Martin (AUS) holds the record for the youngest "unassisted
circumnavigation", but David Dicks (AUS) holds the record for the youngest
"assisted circumnavigation', he did not do it unassisted because he had a bolt
lowered to him from a helicopter off the Falkland Islands, to facilitate a
repair to his rigging.

* From John Sherwood, Annapolis: It seems counterproductive to start long
distance races in or just before known bad weather. The current Vendee Globe is
the most recent example of several over the past few years. Competitors prepare
for years to do these events and then find themselves out or far behind (due to
having to return to port for repairs) in the first few days of a multi-month
event. We enthusiasts miss the chance to see some of these great sailors
perform. In addition, hard-won sponsors end up without exposure. I recognize
that given the nature of the events competitors should be prepared for anything,
but they end up using the first few days or so of these races as kind of a shake
down It doesn't make sense to start with a major test when the option exists to
avoid it.

* From Rick Bernstein (edited to our 250-word limit): Ah the good old days, the
video image of Dennis Connor tearing up after losing the cup in the first
nationally televised AC. The years that followed, we couldn't get enough of the
"no stone left unturned" mentality of Americanism to get the Cup back to our
shores. "We" went to Australia and through technology; practice and hard work
came together as a sailing community and won; on the water. The cup had arrived
on the worldwide television screen and we day sailors throughout the world were
in awe. Then, it happened, as all manners of business do, the "company" got into
the wrong hands and the once successful business model collapsed due to
out-of-control selfishness and greed. What follows is a PR campaign by the new
"company" that totally bombs.

I'm quite sure I speak for ten of thousands from around the globe when I say: we
now read that Ernesto (ACM) controls the defender series as well, and that he
chooses the RC and umps and can change the rules to fit his agenda; "the disgust
level for today's AC has reached Max D." Oh, the "D" is for disgusting,
deplorable, delusional, drunk, and delirious. Come back Dennis and John and Ted
and Gary and help "right" this ship, please, we miss you more than ever now and
beg you to help, as we just can't stand this debacle anymore.

Did you hear about the blond who thought that Roe vs. Wade was the decision
George Washington had to make before he crossed the Delaware?

Special thanks to Camet, Doyle Sails, and Laser Performance.

A complete list of preferred suppliers is at