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SCUTTLEBUTT 2740 - Tuesday, December 9, 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, North Sails, and Onne van der Wal gallery.

American Rob Douglas briefly held the outright world speed record, setting a
pace last October of 49.84 kts - the first kitesailor to hold the overall speed
sailing title. Rob pushed the mark up to 50.54 knots, but on the same day
Alexandre Caizergues (FRA) captured the current record of 50.57 kts, also using
a kite. Politics and anti-kite sentiment led the International Sailing
Federation (ISAF) in November 2008 to decide that kitesailors could not contend
for the outright record, but this past weekend their decision was reversed. Rob
Douglas, the 2nd fastest sailor on earth, comments on the news:

* On the reversal by ISAF to recognize kitesailing for the outright speed
DOUGLAS: I had confidence that this issue would be reversed because I thought
that there was too much precedence shown by ISAF and World Sailing Speed Record
Council (WSSRC) regarding kitesailing and speed sailing records.

-- ISAF had previously ruled that kitesailing was a class of sailing. The WSSRC
had already declared that Alex's overall kitespeed of 47.92 in '07 was valid and
that Sjourke was the fastest women under sail.
-- The kitesurfers and the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) kept up
the pressure on ISAF.
-- The argument that kitesailing was not sailing was a losing argument.

* What do you think led to this controversy in the first place?
DOUGLAS: The controversy started because kitesailors broke 50 kts first!!!!!!
The controversy was pushed forward by some big boat activists outside and inside big boat has spent and invested a tremendous amount of money
trying to be the first to break 50kts…marketing, equipment etc. -- Read on:

=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: Rob comment above refers to the foiling trimaran
l’Hydroptère, a French project that has been seeking the outright record. --

(Dec. 8, 2008) - Thomas Coville has done it again. On Sunday he set a new
single-handed 24 hour distance record on a multihull record with a total
distance of 620.80 miles, but now he reports on Monday to have raised the bar
further, reaching 628.5 miles at an average speed of 26.19 knot (record not yet
ratified). Commented Coville, “These speeds are completely insane! To maintain
an average of 26.19 knots, you have to regularly make over 30 knots of boat
speed, which effectively means you have to be extremely quick the whole time!”
Despite two days of a record setting pace, Coville continues to struggle in his
attempt to set a new solo round the world record aboard the 105-foot
maxi-trimaran Sodeb’O, finding himself 1216 nm behind record holder Francis
Joyon’s pace. --

With the holidays approaching, Santa’s Elves have been working hard to keep up
with the demand for Camet sailing gear. From our popular Cargos to the new
Wahines, the Elves are going crazy in the North Pole to make enough for everyone
on their list! So, if you have been nice (or even a little naughty) get your
list in today. If not, you just might miss out on the hottest gifts of the year!
Happy Holidays from Camet!

One of the growing classes at Key West Race Week has been the Melges 32,
beginning with eight boats in 2006 and rising to 27 for the 2008 event. To
encourage boats to begin coming south this year, the class held their Gold Cup
event in Ft Lauderdale last weekend, where 20 boats and many of the sport’s
prominent players gathered for the three day event.

For a class that permits up to three Category 3 (professional) sailors aboard
each boat, the crew list at the Gold Cup was a who’s-who that included the likes
of Tommaso Chieffi, Dave Ullman, Jeff Madragali, Gavin Brady, Morgan Reeser,
Andy Horton, Terry Hutchinson, Charlie Ogletree, and Harry Melges. With ninety
percent of the fleet sailing with at least two pros, it was refreshing to see
the winner - Marty Kullman & Mike Carroll’s New Wave - come from the remaining
ten percent.

The New Wave team has been in the class from the beginning, and in fact won that
first class event at Acura Key West 2006. On what has kept this team at the head
of the fleet, Martin Kullman notes, “We have had a very consistent team that
goes back to when we had a Henderson 30. Most of these guys I have been sailing
with for more than twelve years.” The team sailed a Melges 24 after the
Henderson, and now with the Melges 32, Kullman observes, “I have always been
drawn to one design sailing. The power and speed of the M32 is awesome, making
it a fun boat to sail. The ability to trailer the boat around makes it easy to
get to more regattas and we are sailing against some of the best sailors in the
world.” -- Read on:

(Dec. 8, 2008) Forget Christmas, the strategists within the fleet's sail lofts
have no intention of wasting any cards in the near future. You see, they are in
short supply. To last an entire 37,000-nautical mile race each of the teams has
only 24 sail cards, one of which gets used every time they have a new sail
measured and approved by the race measurers. "It sounds a lot, but it really
isn't in a race like this," said Nathan Quirk, one of Telefonica's sailmakers.
"It's not too difficult to damage them in the conditions we sail in," added
Justin Ferris, who sails on PUMA.

In context, the first and second legs saw the teams carry the maximum 11 sails
onboard, not including the storm jibs and trysails, which are not counted in the
24. "You need that many to cover the wind range," explained Team Delta Lloyd
shore boss Jeff Condell. "Given how far the boats have to go and the conditions
they sail in, you have to be careful not to use all your sail cards."In an ideal
world you would only want to use a card for tactical reasons like getting
lighter sails for lighter legs. If you have to replace sails because of damage
or because it's been cut loose, that's not great. But damage to sails is quite
hard to avoid." -- Read on:

Leg Three from Cochin to Singapore is 1,950 nm, begins December 13th with the
finish estimated on December 23rd. Current standings after Leg Two of the ten
leg event:
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:
Race tracking:
Race website:

(Dec, 8, 2008; Day 29) - Sébastien Josse onboard BT is quite clear about his own
Vendee Globe race strategy in the Southern Ocean and is adamant not to get
dragged into a battle for speed at the front. The risks are high and the race is
long. BT is currently ranked in third place but is actually around 130 miles to
the north of the two frontrunners. Commented Seb, "We got shaken quite roughly
last night with 35 knots of wind and a boat-breaking sea - we were passing over
a shallow shelf. Despite the fact we are sailing downwind the boat movements are
quite hard, constantly slamming into the waves, so it's important to be
conscious of the fact the race is still long and I don't want to push too hard
because there is no point in stepping on the gas with both feet and end up
turning left before Cape Horn [ie, be forced to stop in Australia or NZ]. If you
look at the average speeds it's clear that some people are really pushing to the
limit and when I need to accelerate to remain with the leading pack I do it but
I also know how not to put too much strain on the boat otherwise it's not
reasonable.” -- Race tracking:

* It is remarkable to note that 2001 winner Michel Desjoyeaux (Foncia), who
started nearly two days late after returning to fix a water ballast system leak
and faulty engine, is now in 6th place, just 103.1 nm behind the leader.

Solo, non-stop, around the world race in Open 60s.
Standings as of 18:30 UTC (Top 5 plus of 30 entrants):
1. Jean-Pierre Dick (FRA), Paprec-Virbac 2, 16516.9 nm Distance to finish
2. Roland Jourdain (FRA), Veolia Environnement, 37.5 nm Distance to leader
3. Sébastien Josse (FRA), BT, 56.6 nm DTL
4. Loïck Peyron (FRA), Gitana Eighty, 61.3 nm DTL
5. Mike Golding (GBR), Ecover, 85.0 nm DTL
14. Samantha Davies (GBR), Roxy, 686.5 nm DTL
17. Dee Caffari (GBR), Aviva, 831.0 nm DTL
20. Rich Wilson (USA), Great American III, 1224.5 nm DTL
22. Derek Hatfield (CAN), Algimouss Spirit of Canada, 1673.5 nm DTL
Complete standings:
Event website:

The holidays are quickly approaching and as a gift to you, we are offering free
shipping on all North Sails Gear ordered online through Saturday, December 13th.
We have a great line of 3DL totes & duffels, sailing gloves, videos, clothing,
and LOTS more at Offer applies to surface shipping
within the USA only. Mention 'Scuttlebutt' in the comments box during check-out
and shipping will be deducted.

(This story follows Audi’s sponsorship cancellation of America’s Cup challenger
Team Germany)
Big sports sponsors such as Audi are running for the hills rather than shelling
out millions on big events and players. And it will be even harder for sports
bosses to attract sponsors next year. All advertising is about selling products.
It is especially hard to prove that pumping millions into sponsorships leads to
more sales. The value of sports sponsorships is never easy to quantify.

When economic times are good - as they have been for many years - sponsors' cash
is easier to get. Sponsorships can be sold to advertisers as "building the
brand" maintaining a place on the global stage - and matching the competitors.
It may well have been good for the image of Audi to have their logo on the
German boat and at the corporate events that surround the Cup. But how good? And
how do you work out what impact it had getting an Audi on the road? It is Ground
Zero for all sponsorships right now. -- NZ Herald, read on:

Last week, visited the Paris International Boat Show. While
visitors entering from one gate are greeted with a white version of Puma’s Il
Mostro, and BMW displays that tie in the company’s support for the BMW ORACLE
Americas Cup team, inside at the stands of producers like Beneteau and Bavaria,
you would not know that a boat could be used for racing.

In an Olympic year, and at a time when two major offshore races attracting
global media attention are taking place, promoting the sport to a wider
audience, the production boat manufacturers are completely ignoring the
connection. It was left up to companies promoting cars and tourism and
wet-weather gear to use the association with the most visible aspect of the
sport to sell more product. -- Read on:

By Tillerman, Proper Course blog
What is the toughest sailing race in the world? Well, as a certain former
president of the United States might have said, "It depends on what the meaning
of the word 'is' is." It sure does, and for that matter it also depends on the
meaning of "sailing" and "race" and "toughest". I think we can probably all
agree on the definition of "world" can't we?

Let's take the easiest one first. What is "sailing"? For example, there was
recently a major dispute going on about whether kitesurfers are eligible for the
world sailing speed record. Are kitesurfers sailors? In any case, do kitesurfers
race? Anyway let's leave them out. But what about windsurfers? Did you see them
at the Olympics "air rowing" themselves around the race course? If that's a
sailing race then arguably it is the most physically demanding type of sailing
race there is. Maybe some windsurfing race is deserving of the title "Toughest
Sailing Race in the World"? -- Read on:

As the Vendée Globe fleet stream passed the Cape of Good Hope, over 600 miles
offshore to the south, the six teams in the Portimão Global Ocean Race are in
the final countdown to the December 13th start of the 7,500mile Leg 2 from Cape
Town to Wellington, New Zealand. As this group of solo Open 40 and doublehanded
Class 40 entrants continue preparations in the race base at the Royal Cape Yacht
Club, the focus is clearly locked on the forthcoming voyage through the Southern
Ocean and applying the lessons learned from Leg 1.

The young German duo, Boris Herrmann and co-skipper Felix Oehme, sailed Beluga
Racer to victory in Leg 1 spending 34 days at sea, but Herrmann is aware that
Leg 2 is a much bigger challenge: “On the last leg, we didn’t have a lot of
wind,” admits the 27 year-old skipper. “I think the maximum the fleet
experienced was only about 30 knots of breeze and on the next leg, there’ll be
much, much more, definitely. So we’re trying to prepare ourselves mentally so we
are ready to cope with situations when it might be really dangerous.” The
Southern Ocean has a fearsome reputation and holds a near-mythical status for
offshore sailors as an area of intense storms and huge seas. “The big winds by
themselves are not always a problem,” Hermann explains. “But it’s the steep seas
and chaotic waves which can be damaging, especially at night when you can’t see
what’s coming. That’s what we’re frightened by.” -- Read on:

Be the star of your holidays and put Onne van der Wal prints, calendars,
notecards, or gift cards under the tree or menorah. Give the lasting gift of
original photography this year - it will outlive a new sail and can be on your
walls FAST! Call for great gift ideas starting at $18! 401-849-5556 or

* The newest edition of the Racing Rules of Sailing is currently being printed
for 2009-2012, and will be arriving to the Canadian Yachting Association offices
on December 16th 2008. Copies can now be pre-purchased at the CYA store:

* ISAF has published the 2009-2012 editions of the ISAF Call Book for Match
Racing and the ISAF Call Book for Team Racing. The Call Books provide a clear
definition, for both competitors and umpires, how certain incidents will be
called in match or team racing events. Through written and illustrated examples,
scenarios that occur in match or team racing events are presented along with the
rules applicable to that situation and how and when they should be applied. The
2009-2012 editions can be downloaded here:

* Cyril Moussilmani (FRA, Fanatic, North) and Valerie Ghibaudo (FRA, Loft Sails)
take the victory of the 2008 International Speed Windsurfing Class (ISWC) World
Cup Ranking. After 12 events, three of them categorized as continental or world
championship grade, the actual ISWC world ranking incorporates a total of 394
sailors from 22 nations, representing 3 continents. The Board Manufacturers
Ranking is won by Starboard, in the Sail Manufacturers category North Sails
takes the crown. The most successful nation in 2008 was again France. -- Full

* CORRECTION: Scuttlebutt 2739 stated that there would be free dockage at the
2009 International Rolex Regatta for IRC boats at two island marinas. As it
turns out, free dock space is not limited to IRC boats, but is open to all
entrants. -- Event website:

Morris Yachts is saddened by the loss of their founder Thomas D.C Morris on
Sunday, December 7th. Tom was diagnosed with cancer in the summer of 2007 and
fought it valiantly. To those who knew him it will not be surprising to know
that he outlived all the doctors’ prognoses. He died at home in Southwest
Harbor, Maine surrounded by his loving family.

The understated Morris was not a native of Maine, but his connection to the Pine
Tree State goes back more than a century. Beginning in the mid-1880s, his family
began what was to become a long tradition of summer vacations in Maine. Tom was
born in Philadelphia in 1940 and developed an early passion for sailing on the
family’s A Class sloop, which his grandfather acquired in 1913. Five generations
sailed the A Class number seven before the family donated her to the Mystic
Seaport museum in 1975 where she is on display. -- Read on:

With the 33rd America’s Cup tied up in the U.S. legal system, but also being
organized in Europe, the entry deadline set by defender Alinghi of December 15th
required the BMW Oracle Racing team to decide whether to continue with their
legal tactic, or fold and enter the event being organized. Here is their

* Marcus Young, Commodore, Golden Gate Yacht Club:
“This is to officially inform you that the Golden Gate Yacht Club and the BMW
ORACLE Racing team will not submit an entry by December 15 for the regatta that
Société Nautique Genève (SNG) is organizing, which we do not consider a
legitimate America’s Cup. Rather, we will now focus our efforts and attention on
winning our appeal before the New York State Court of Appeals – clearly the only
avenue left open to create a fair and competitive challenge that preserves the
integrity, prestige and tradition of yacht racing’s pinnacle event in keeping
with terms of the America’s Cup Deed of Gift. As you know, the Court has set a
date of February 10 for oral arguments and is expected to rule on our appeal by
the end of March. Given the stakes involved for the future of the America’s Cup,
we do not believe a few more months represent an unreasonable delay. In fact, we
find it quite odd that SNG has set an arbitrary registration deadline of
December 15 in light of the fact that a Court decision is so close.” -- Read on:

* Paco Latorre, Communication Director. Alinghi/ACM:
"Today's announcement by BMW Oracle and Golden Gate Yacht Club is not a surprise
because they have never shown any interest in joining the competition with the
14 teams which are currently officially entered. Instead, at every turn, they
have chosen to insist on pursuing their selfish legal strategy. Their latest
letter shows a tremendous arrogance and lack of respect for the teams involved
in the process of working with Société Nautique Genève (SNG) and Alinghi to
organise the 33rd America's Cup. Despite never making it to the final rounds of
the competition, BMW Oracle disregards the importance and competence of Team
Origin, a British team representing the country that first created the
competition in 1851; Team New Zealand, a two time winner of the America's Cup;
Desafío Español, whose country hosted the successful 32nd America's Cup in
Valencia; plus a winner of the Louis Vuitton Cup and a dozen other teams from
around the world. While it's disappointing that BMW Oracle has chosen to proceed
with the legal route instead of joining the collective process, SNG and Alinghi
are committed to working with all these entered teams to organize a
multi-challenge event while waiting for the final ruling from the Court of

“My parents didn't want to move to Florida, but they turned sixty, and that's
the law." - Jerry Seinfeld

Special thanks to Camet, North Sails, and Onne van der Wal gallery.

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