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SCUTTLEBUTT 2735 - Tuesday, December 2, 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 J World San Diego, Camet, and LaserPerformance.

When the New York Yacht Club Swan 42 was established in 2006, one of their more
lively topics of discussion was the degree of inclusion (or exclusion) of
professionals in a class founded on the concept of Corinthian racing. It was
decided by consensus to try a middle ground and by using the ISAF Sailor
Classification Code, to allow one Group 3 sailor (in addition to a boat captain)
who could not be paid for racing. The intention was to help raise the game for
owners on a technically demanding boat by letting Group 3 sail makers, hardware
manufacturers, boat yard managers, riggers, and writers help us on the learning

In the ensuing period, there had been a number of complaints to the Executive
Committee that some boats were, perhaps, pushing the pro rule too far by
enlisting the services of sailors whose primary livelihood (as opposed to
secondary occupational duty or skill) comes from professional sailing. The
contentions were that these racing pros may not have explicitly been paid to
race for that event, but they "must have been" indirectly getting remuneration
at other times and/or for other services.

Whether or not any boats had broken the explicit rule, it did appear that the
spirit of the rule and its original intent had been tested. A revised rule was
proposed, which was to further clarify and define the existing rule. After lots
of healthy discussion at the November class meeting, it was decided not to make
any changes at this time. Here was the proposed revision that did not pass:

A story included in Scuttlebutt 2731 described how Ted Turner, upon winning the
1977 America’s Cup, arrived at his victory press conference, and after have
accepted an astonishing variety of alcoholic beverages since reaching the dock,
slid blissfully beneath the table as the world watched. Hmm, not so says Dick
Enersen, who was there filming the whole thing for his documentary film, "The
Best Defense," now available on DVD. Recalls Dick:

“Ted was, indeed, pretty snockered, but he didn't pass out, or slide blissfully
anywhere. The facts of the matter are these: Having won the fourth straight race
over AUSTRALIA, and therefore defending the Cup, COURAGEOUS picked up her tow
and headed for Bannister's Wharf. A small boat, full of Swedes, came alongside
and passed up a six pack of beer and a bottle of aquavit to the happy US26 crew.
A great deal of celebration and consumption of spirits took place at the dock,
including all the crew, and many supporters, taking a dip in the harbor. The
press conference took place later, a little way down Thames Street.” --
Scuttleblog, read on:

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Diego, so what could be a better Holiday present than the GIFT THAT KEEPS ON
GIVING? J World San Diego is offering Holiday Specials on all Sailing Club
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round. Visit our website for details or contact us
for more information:, 1-800-666-1050.

(Dec. 1, 2008; Day 17) - It redefined the concept of a last-minute dash, but the
manner in which Telefonica Black stormed from seventh to fourth in the final few
hours of Leg Two did not surprise navigator Roger Nilson in the slightest.
Fernando Echavarri's team were seemingly out of the race, destined to back up
their last place arrival into Cape Town with a paltry two points in India after
spending almost the entirety of the first 15 days in the bottom three.

But then the tables took a dramatic late turn. By 2200 GMT Sunday night they had
clawed back the deficit on fourth place to just five miles - as recently as
November 27 the gap was 47 miles - and promptly entered "StealthPlay". With
their rivals unable to see their location in the position reports, they
reappeared 12 hours later with a seven-mile hold on fourth. In between, Nilson
made the call to go within two miles of the beach and was not remotely shocked
to see the spectacular result it yielded. "I wasn't surprised that we came out
in a good way," he said. "We saw the first three boats go that route and it
worked for them so we did the same." -- Read on:

* Rewinding the race tracker shows how covering tactics between PUMA, Delta
Lloyd, and Green Dragon had kept them together approaching the finish, providing
Telefonica Black with the opportunity to get some separation and take advantage
of the coastal conditions. -- Race tracking:

The length of Leg Two from Cape Town to Cochin, India was 4,450 nm. Leg Three
from Cochin to Singapore is 1,950 nm, begins December 13th with the finish
estimated on December 23rd. Leg Two finishing order (as of Dec. 2, 1:00am GMT):
1. Ericsson 4 (SWE), Torben Grael/BRA, Finished Nov. 29, 22:52:30 GMT
2. Telefónica Blue (ESP), Bouwe Bekking/NED, Finished Nov. 30, 12:37:50 GMT
3. Ericsson 3 (SWE), Anders Lewander/SWE, Finished Dec. 1, 2008, 07:36:45 GMT
4. Telefonica Black (ESP), F. Echavarri/ESP, Finished Dec. 1, 2008, 12:00:20 GMT
5. PUMA (USA), Ken Read/USA, Finished Dec. 1, 2008, 12:22:12 GMT
6. Delta Lloyd (IRL), Roberto Bermudez/ESP, Finished Dec. 1, 2008, 12:29:00 GMT
7. Green Dragon (IRL/CHN), Ian Walker/GBR, Finished Dec. 1, 2008, 13:08:20 GMT
8. Team Russia (RUS), Andreas Hanakamp/AUT, 368 nm Distance to Finish

Current standings after Leg Two
1. Ericsson 4 (SWE), Torben Grael/BRA, 26 points
2. Telefónica Blue (ESP), Bouwe Bekking/NED, 19 points
3. PUMA (USA), Ken Read/USA, 18 points
4. Green Dragon (IRL/CHN), Ian Walker/GBR, 16 points
5. Ericsson 3 (SWE), Anders Lewander/SWE, 14.5 points
6. Telefonica Black (ESP), F. Echavarri/ESP, 13.5 points
7. Delta Lloyd (IRL), Roberto Bermudez/ESP, 7.5 points
8. Team Russia (RUS), Andreas Hanakamp/AUT, 7.5 points
Overall scores:

(Dec, 1, 2008; Day 22) - The head scratching, brain teaser that was the South
Atlantic (St Helena) high pressure system is a fast fading memory as the top ten
leading skippers on the Vendée Globe gybe south and east to pick up the Roaring
Forties, to propel them eastwards to the first of eight Ice Gate some 650 miles
to the east (Ice Gates are intended to direct the fleet away from ice bergs).
The equation to be weighed up presently is the perennial dilemma, head south,
sail more miles but gain more breeze, or sail more directly east in a few knots
less of prevailing NW’ly, cover a shorter distance at slightly slower speeds.

The fleet is not in complete agreement whether to go south or east, but an easy
way to climb in the rankings is to gybe to port and aim east. A look at the
current standings requires an equally long look at the race tracker, and with
less than seventeen miles separating third from seventh, the northern road taken
by Yann Eliès, Roland Jourdain, and Armel Le Cléac´h might find their top five
positions short lived. -- Race tracking:

Solo, non-stop, around the world race in Open 60s.
Standings as of 18:30 UTC (Top 5 plus of 30 entrants):
1. Sébastien Josse (FRA), BT, 18859.0 nm Distance to finish
2. Loïck Peyron (FRA), Gitana Eighty, 44.2 nm Distance to leader
3. Yann Eliès (FRA), Generali, 60.7 nm DTL
4. Roland Jourdain (FRA), Veolia Environnement, 66.8 nm DTL
5. Armel Le Cléac´h (FRA), Brit Air, 73.7 nm DTL
14. Samantha Davies (GBR), Roxy, 410.8 nm DTL
15. Dee Caffari (GBR), Aviva, 527.8 nm DTL
20. Rich Wilson (USA), Great American III, 815.7 nm DTL
24. Derek Hatfield (CAN), Algimouss Spirit of Canada, 1508.3 nm DTL
Complete standings:
Event website:

When Ben Ainslie was 15 he won a junior world championship sailing a Laser
Radial, a class of dinghy. Someone at the BBC, noting this splendid achievement,
decided that it would be nice to invite him to the Sports Personality of the
Year awards. He and his father duly turned up outside the Queen Elizabeth
Conference Centre in London in a taxi. Ainslie grins as he recounts the story.
"We got out and this horde of people came running towards me. Then they stopped,
and this one guy went, 'It's all right, it's nobody'. My dad put his arm round
me. He said, 'It's OK, son'."

It is safe to say that Ainslie, now 31, won't get the "it's nobody" treatment
when he turns up for this year's awards, in Liverpool later this month. Nor,
however, will he get the main prize. For an island nation we are curiously
lukewarm about our sailing heroes, so it is worth reflecting that if Ainslie
were as good at football as he is at sailing, he would probably be the most
famous man on earth. -- The Independent, complete story:

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Californian Chris Welsh returned his 1964 John Spencer-designed 60-foot Ragtime
to its birthplace in New Zealand for some summer sailing. Can you relate to this
report, posted by Chris from a short distance race in Auckland:

* About to round White Island. Had a tough night, 18-25 knots upwind the whole
way and confused seas - classic “not Ragtime’s deal” and a lot of slamming, no
sleep. #3 Jib, reefed main. Rain.

* Mid morning, wind faded and swung around, spent most of the day with #1 jib,
then A1 chute in 5-9 knots of breeze. Becoming a slow race, will be going upwind
through tonight.

* Ahh, what a difference a few hours makes. Was a little disappointed that wind
shifts had put us behind. But now we’ve rounded, and it was spectacular. The
volcano was steaming from ten different spots on the backside, birds wheeling
and in large white colonies here and there. Huge sunset, and a few planets out
already. This is what we all came for, and if feels like the reward of a perfect
ski run, after you’ve climbed the hill to get there rather than just taken a
lift up. -- Complete report:

* Colin deMowbry and David Cusworth of Clipper Ventures in the UK will be in the
San Francisco Bay area starting this week to search for new crew members for the
2009/ 2010 Clipper Round the World Race (, an around
the world race for amateurs on professional level boats. Dates, times, and
locations posted in the Scuttlebutt Forum:

* Both Italian syndicate Mascalzone Latino and Team Germany, challengers in the
32nd America’s Cup in 2007, have withdrawn from the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series
to be held in Auckland, New Zealand in February next year. Both teams stated
that the global financial crisis made it impossible to find sponsors to back
their participation. -- NZ Herald, full story:

* The International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) and the Kiteboard Pro World
Tour (KPWT) have announced that they have entered a long term cooperation. All
events of the KPWT tour will be sanctioned by the IKA and count towards the
first officially ISAF sanctioned world championship title in 2009. The agreement
includes the sanction of the KPWT tour events as well as the development of
worldwide unified rules and ranking systems. The IKAs intention is to unify the
international kiteboarding community under the umbrella of the International
Sailing Federation (ISAF). -- Complete report:

* The World Sailing Speed Record Council announced the ratification of a new
World Kite-board Record of 50.57 knots by Alexandre Caizergues (FRA), who was
using a Fone Prototype Speed board and a Fone Bandit Dos Speed 7sq m kite on
October 4, 2008 at Luderitz, Namibia. The previous record was 50.26 knots by
Sebastien Cattelan. Also, the ratification has been completed for a new D class
world record of 46.88 knots set by Alain Thébault and a crew of 10 aboard
Hydroptère on November 13, 2008 at Port St Louis, France. The previous record
was 46.15 knots, also set by Hydroptère. --

* US SAILING announced that The Racing Rules of Sailing 2009-2012 including US
SAILING prescriptions is now available, in time before the new rules become
effective on January 1, 2009. Current members of US SAILING will soon receive a
free copy of the new rulebook and additional copies are available for purchase
through US SAILING's online store (at discounted rates for US SAILING members).
Dave Perry's Understanding the Racing Rules of Sailing Through 2012 - a
companion to The Racing Rules of Sailing - is also now available through US
SAILING's online store. --

* The Recreation and Conservation Funding Board of Washington state has approved
grant awards worth more than US$12.3m to improve boating facilities and other
outdoor facilities in 33 counties. The board awarded grants in November to 90
projects under three recreation grant programs. One of those programs is the
Boating Facilities Program, which is funded by a portion of the state gas tax.
It is used to acquire develop and renovate public boating facilities. -- IBI
Magazine, read on:

Learn top tricks from a great coach in a great boat! Dave Perry will be holding
two clinics surrounding the 2009 Rolex Miami OCR event this winter.
LaserPerformance will be providing the Laser SB3's and Miami will be providing
the sun. Learn more 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 John Turvill: The following is from the wikipedia entry for kites: “Kites
typically consist of one or more spars to which a paper or fabric sail is

Prior to the recent clarification from the ISAF, I obviously hadn’t appreciated
just how far this is from a description of sailing equipment. However, I trust
that the ISAF will also notify Skysail and the others who are commercializing
kite sails for commercial vessels and yachts that whatever they are doing, it
does not classify as sailing. Or is it OK to call it sailing because they don’t
use just a board and they have a keel? (oops - cross threaded).

* From Tim Minogue: Regarding comments by Bill Lee and William Tuthill on kites
and speed sailing (SBUTT 2733 and 2734, respectively), lets deal with reality,
not fantasy. Kites in the jetstream and padded balls in hurricanes have nothing
to do with the current question. Nor does water depth. The World Sailing Speed
Record Council (WSSRC) now has rules in place for minimum water depth and the
course at Luderitz at which Alexandre Caizergues set his world record fully
complied with the depth requirement. Water depth is a red herring and an issue
that has already been dealt with.

Anyone who complains that kitesurfing is not sufficiently like conventional
sailing to qualify for the sailing speed record, obviously never turned up to
Weymouth Speed Week and saw the astounding array of Rube Goldberg/Heath Robinson
contraptions entered. Speedsailing has always been about pushing design
boundaries and has never restricted the type of craft that could enter, no
matter how outrageous, as long as it was supported by water and powered by wind.
Let's keep it that way and keep ISAF politics and vested interests out of it.

Kitesurfers have a valid claim to the world sailing speed record, in fact I
would argue that they are participating in the purest form of sailing - a few
square metres of sail, some hi-tech string and a small board. These days we
expect high performance in any other arena to come at the cost of increased
complexity. It’s refreshing to see that in sailing that we can go faster as we
get simpler. -- Additional comments:

* From Leslie Valmadre: Just to keep the record straight, to describe Iain
Murray as having helped Alan Bond clinch the America's Cup victory for Australia
at Rhode Island in 1983 is drawing a very long bow (Scuttlebutt 2734- Murray
Living a Double Life). I quote from one of the one of the crew on the boat and
one of the major participants in the crew team:

"Iain was involved late in the campaign (after Syd Fishers boat, of which Iain
was the skipper, was eliminated in the challenger series) as the skipper of
CHALLENGE 12, which we (Australia II) used during the AC as a warm up boat pre
start. He was not part of the 30 (extended to 35) official A2 team members.”

Lots of people are very willing to claim some responsibility for the historic
win but at the end of the day the credit and accolades for that momentous result
should be attributed to those who really deserve it not, just everyone from
Australia who happened to be in Newport on that day in September 1983.

* From Larry Whipple: (re, the Curmudgeon’s Observation in SBUTT 2734) The
correct Jefferson quote is "I sincerely believe... that banking establishments
are more dangerous than standing armies, and that the principle of spending
money to be paid by posterity under the name of funding is but swindling
futurity on a large scale." -- Thomas Jefferson to John Taylor, 1816. ME 15:23

You have printed a 2008 updated version.

When you give a lesson in meanness to a critter or a person, don't be surprised
if they learn their lesson.

Special thanks to J World San Diego, Camet, and LaserPerformance.

When making your holiday shopping decisions this year, please give consideration
to supporting the Scuttlebutt sponsors. A complete list of preferred suppliers
is at