SCUTTLEBUTT 2830 - Friday, April 24, 2009
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providing a digest of major sailing news, commentary, opinions, features and
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ALINGHI, BMW ORACLE MEETING ENDS IN DISCORD
(Apr. 23, 2009) - Alinghi rejected a proposal from BMW Oracle Racing on
Thursday for a traditional America's Cup race in monohull boats, saying it was
preparing to race the American challenger in multihulls as soon as May 2010.
The first meeting between the rival Swiss and American teams to negotiate the
terms for a 33rd edition of sailing's classic ended in discord. Alinghi says
the race should be held as soon as possible rather than in 2011. It also
called on BMW Oracle to invite other teams to take part.
"It is time to just get out there and have the regatta and get on with it,"
Alinghi skipper Brad Butterworth said after a first gathering since a
long-running court battle ended this month. But BMW Oracle and its backer, San
Francisco's Golden Gate Yacht Club, said it had put forward a proposal for a
traditional race with multiple challengers in monohull boats. "GGYC is
disappointed that (Alinghi's club Societe Nautique Geneve) categorically
rejected our proposals for a conventional regatta," club spokesman Tom Ehman
said in a statement. -- SF Chronicle, read on: http://tinyurl.com/ACUP-Discord
* Photographer Carlo Borlenghi was at the meeting to record the discord:
=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: Don’t be surprised when the lawyers get involved
again, as these teams are not going to agree on an event date. As was reported
by Cory Friedman in Scuttlebutt, “Thus, we are exactly where we were on May
12, 2008, when Justice Cahn ruled that the match be ten months later in
Valencia or any other venue chosen by SNG upon six months prior notice to
Golden Gate Yacht Club (GGYC).” From the April 2009 Court of Appeals decision,
ten months would put the race in February 2010. However, Alinghi now wants the
race in May 2010. Do you think that BMW Oracle will give the Swiss three
additional months to prepare? Me neither.
QUOTE / UNQUOTE
Brad Butterworth, on the Alinghi team’s reasoning for a multihull America’s
Cup, “In these financial times, it's just a waste if we don't use them.” -- SF
INDISPENSABLE SUNSCREEN TIPS
by Lynn Fitzpatrick, World Regattas
Dr. Steve Horwitz has been an active PHRF, Lightning and Etchells sailor for
quite awhile. While most sailors on Biscayne Bay are used to seeing him at the
helm of Widespread Panic, he crewed for years before he became a
“I used to wear this sunscreen that would discolor the decks of every boat I
sailed on. I wore it because I have pretty fair skin and I just hated the
feeling of getting a sunburn,” said Horwitz before he recited his
indispensable tenets of sun protection (I’ve added the rhyme).
1. From 10 am to 3 pm are peak UV hours. Avoid them with all of your power.
This is obviously a problem for sailors, which is why 2 through 4 must be
2. If out between dawn and dusk, applying sunscreen is a must. Even if not
sunbathing or sailing the sun you must not trust
3. Put sunscreen on a half- hour before you leave the house. If you wait, it
could be too late.
4. Make sure your skin is dry before you apply.
5. Always wear a hat to cover you head. It doesn’t have to be Mount Gay red.
6. Long sleeved shirts are the answer for protecting your forearms from more
7. Always cover the tops of your feet; it’s dangerous for them to turn red as
The SPF (sun protection factor) is a calculated number indicating the time a
person with sunscreen applied can be exposed to sunlight before getting
sunburn relative to the time a person without sunscreen can be exposed. In
theory, an SPF of 15 will protect the average person for a seven-hour day. The
SPF value is not the only measure to select a sunscreen (see below).
Sunscreens that are effective on some people may not be effective on others.
Dr. Horwitz recommends the following for determining what sunscreen works best
for you. -- Read on: http://www.worldregattas.com/ViewInfo.php?ContentID=218
=> Curmudgeon’s Comment: This article is the second of a three part series.
And while I have your attention, let me remind you of the sunscreen
information recently posted on Scuttlebutt:
OPPORTUNITIES OPEN WITH SHIFT IN WEATHER
(Apr. 23, 2009; Day 13) - What else could Telefonica Blue do? At 0700 GMT
Thursday morning, Ericsson 4 had inched to within six miles of the blue boat
and skipper Bouwe Bekking was faced with an important tactical decision. Now
running hard downwind, the wind direction had called for a gybe to port, and
Bekking’s dilemma was when, exactly, should he carry out the manoeuvre? He
took the only decision he could and played his Stealth card, keeping secret,
at least for 12 hours, the moment he made his move. Soon thereafter E4 went
Stealth as well.
When the Stealth period expired for both boats, it was apparent that the
approaching cold front and tactical turns had cracked the top positions wide
open. The route to Boston is further complicated by the risk of collision with
one of the world’s most critically endangered whales, the North Atlantic right
whale. To protect the species (and the boats), a critical feeding area off the
Boston coastline had been identified and an exclusion zone has been put in
place by the race organisers to keep the fleet away from the area. As
Scuttlebutt went to press, the fleet was light air reaching and nearly on
course to Boston. -- Excerpts from event website
Crewed around the world race in VO 70’s, with ten distance legs and seven
In-Port races. Leg Six from Rio de Janiero, Brazil to Boston, MA, USA is 4,900
nm, with the finish estimated on April 26th. Current positions (as of Apr. 23,
1. Ericsson 4 (SWE), Torben Grael/BRA, 673 nm Distance to Finish
2. Ericsson 3 (SWE), Magnus Olsson/SWE, 31 nm Distance to Leader
3. PUMA (USA), Ken Read/USA, 34 nm DTL
4. Telefónica Blue (ESP), Bouwe Bekking/NED, 55 nm DTL
5. Delta Lloyd (IRL), Roberto Bermudez/ESP, 87 nm DTL
6. Telefonica Black (ESP), Fernando Echavarri/ESP, 108 nm DTL
7. Green Dragon (IRL/CHN), Ian Walker/GBR, 142 nm DTL
Team Russia (RUS), Andreas Hanakamp/AUT, Did Not Start
Event website: http://www.volvooceanrace.org
Race tracking: http://volvooceanrace.geovoile.com
Overall scores: http://www.volvooceanrace.org/rdc/#tab4
* PUMA CITY: It may be called Puma City, but the collection of 24 shipping
containers, arranged into a multilevel retail store, bar, and event space,
more closely resembles a set of giant building blocks than an actual
metropolis. -- Photos and story: http://tinyurl.com/czpy29
WHAT’S THE DEAL WITH QUANTUM!?!
A successful Charleston Race Week wrapped up this past weekend with Quantum
Sails dominating much of it. Quantum Sails were 1st (4 of the top 5) in the
Melges 24 class; 1st in the new Melges 20 class (with Quantum’s new MX sails);
1st & 2nd in the J/24 class; 1st in the J/105 class and 3rd in the J/80 class.
All this proves that Quantum’s latest products are helping both the family
race programs and top one design teams win regattas. Come see for yourself
what the deal is with Quantum: http://www.quantumsails.com
FINAL CUTS COMPLETED FOR MEDAL RACE
Hyères, France (Apr. 23, 2009; Day 5) - For the nine Olympic classes and one
Paralympic class at the Semaine Olympique Française, Thursday was the final
day of series racing, as only the top ten from each event would move on to the
double-point, non-discardable Medal Race on Friday. Winds were light to
moderate, with the top North Americans falling on either side of the bubble.
Among the teams failing to qualify for the Medal Race were Molly Carapiet/
Molly O’Bryan Vandemoer (USA), coming up short in their climb up the Women’s
470 standings to finish at 12th position. Also, on the outside looking in was
Brian Boyd (USA), finishing the Finn event in 13th.
On the positive side, American Anna Tunnicliffe is now only four points off
the Laser Radial lead despite today earning a starting disqualification along
with a 4-2. Paul Tingley (CAN) remains in second in the 2.4mR, nine points out
of first but also three points from fifth. Andrew MacDonald/Brian Faith (USA)
is back in second in the Star, but a good Medal race will be needed to keep
them on the podium. Also needing a good score is Stu McNay/ Graham Biehl (USA)
who are currently seven points back from the Men’s 470 bronze.
The first start will be 10:00 am (local time) with a 15 knot breeze expected.
Event website: http://sof.ffvoile.net
Event video: http://www.sailing.org/worldcuptv.php
Anna Tunnicliffe’s report: http://www.annatunnicliffe.com/content/view/244/1/
DENNIS CONNER AND DR. LAURA…BRILLIANT!
Dennis Conner is at it again. With all that he has done and said, he will
forever be a notable personality in our sport. He need not win another pickle
dish, he need not compete beyond his local beer can events, and he will still
attract attention. He is known at all levels, from the beginner sailor to the
U.S. President. To have that reach, you need to be nearly as good off the
water as you are on the water.
Proving that he still has his media moves, he caught the attention of the
non-yachting press by exercising what may be the most apt method to gain
publicity, and possibly help market the sport. What did he do? Dennis asked
syndicated radio talk show host Laura Schlessinger to go sailing with him.
This Friday, “Dr. Laura” will be joining Dennis’ team aboard his Farr 60 Stars
& Stripes on the 125 mile Newport Beach, CA to Ensenada Race. -- Scuttleblog,
read on: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/blog/2009/04/media-merger.html
A VOTE FOR CHANGE
by Dick Enersen
Gary Jobson addressed an overflow crowd at the Wednesday Yachtsman's Lunch of
the St. Francis Yacht Club. It is fair to say that Gary is the public face of
sailing in this country. He's not quite sixty and has been at this for more
than half his life, having been propelled into the general view as Ted
Turner's tactician in the 1977 defense of America's Cup. Prior to that, of
course, he was a college sailing All American, twice Sailor of the Year and a
successful college coach.
Since then he's done a lot more racing, but has become best known as ESPN's
America's Cup commentator, and producer, and through speaking at yacht clubs,
schools and business groups. Along the way, he's survived a two year battle
with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
His luncheon talk this week touched on all these aspects of his life as a
build up to his newest challenge, the Presidency of US SAILING, which he will
assume in October. His most telling comment, in that regard, recounted his
response to the nominating committee, "Don't pick me if you don't want to see
a lot of changes." Given his vast experience in, and his tremendous enthusiasm
for, our sport, I can't think of a better man for the job.
GOING WHERE NO ONE HAS GONE BEFORE
It was on April 22nd when the Internet was abuzz over the 40th anniversary of
Robin Knox-Johnston’s completion of the first-ever single-handed solo non-stop
circumnavigation - 30,000 miles, 313 days at sea, most out of touch of
humanity, in a 32-foot teak ketch. Among the promoters of this virtual
celebration was the Messing About In Sailboats blog, which has posted many of
the tributes, including the following letter that succeeds in further
explaining the accomplishment:
“I'm always struck by the tone of reverence English writers have for Robin
Knox-Johnston. I think the rest of us may understand and respect what he
accomplished, but can't quite feel what he means to his countrymen.
“We all know of the famous race and of how Sir Robin came to be the only
finisher - you almost can't be a sailor today and not know the story. But I
grew up far from the sea, more than an ocean away from him, in an urban
culture that took little note of his victory. On April 22, 1969, my hometown
newspaper was far too absorbed in the new baseball season to much care about
the idle adventures of some English yachtsman.
“For those of us who sail, though, there is a very real connection with RKJ.
Few of us will ever circumnavigate. Fewer still will do it alone, or in the
Southern Ocean, or all the way around without stopping. And none of us will
ever again be the first to try. But we all know what it feels like to attempt
something scary we've never done before.” -- Read on:
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* (Apr. 23, 2009) - Chicago Yacht Club announced that it has reached its entry
limit of 350 boats for the 2009 Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac, presented
by Lands’ End Business Outfitters. The 101st Race will start off Chicago's
lakefront on July 17th and 18th, 2009. Skippers who received invitations to
the 101st Race, but did not submit a paid entry before the entry limit was
reached, may place their names on a waiting list. Waitlist requests should be
made via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Chicago Yacht Club
may, at its discretion, offer some waitlisted skippers entry to the 101st
* Cagliari, Italy (Apr. 23, 2009) - Dean Baker and Artemis scored an
impressive 9-0 to win the Cagliari RC 44 match race contest event ahead of No
Way Back (Philippe Presti), Ceeref (Sébastien Col), and BMW Oracle Racing
(Larry Ellison); all three on a tie with five points each. The fleet racing
portion of the event starts Friday. -- Full story:
* Last week the line-up for the 2009 iShares Cup Extreme 40 Sailing Series was
announced although one team remained un-named... Now it can be confirmed that
Britain's leading solo offshore sailor, Mike Golding OBE, will join the
six-round series on board his Extreme 40 Ecover. -- Full story:
FIRE AT NEW ENGLAND BOATWORKS
Portsmouth, RI (Apr. 23, 2009) - Firefighters arrived early Thursday morning
to a fire at New England Boatworks, a custom builder that was working on three
boats, two aluminum and one composite. Portsmouth Fire Chief Jeffrey P. Lynch
said just after noon seven firefighters from the nearby Navy base were treated
at Newport Hospital for exposure to cyanide gas. In addition, Lynch said one
firefighter each from Portsmouth and Tiverton suffered leg injuries, while a
National Grid employee was treated for smoke inhalation. At 10 a.m., Lynch
said, crews were still actively fighting the fire, but that it was contained.
He estimated they would continue for 6 to 8 more hours. The cause of the fire
was not immediately apparent. The company employs about 100 people. --
Providence Journal, full story:
LETTERS TO THE CURMUDGEON
Reader commentary is encouraged, with letters to be submitted to the
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* From Henry Brauer: (re, skin cancer story in Scuttlebutt 2829) I have been
reading with great interest all of the information and notes concerning skin
cancer and sailing. I was blessed to grow up with a father who was a
dermatologist and expert on skin cancer. He was ahead of his time. As kids
growing up on Long Island Sound in the 60's and 70's we were made to wear sun
block and zinc. I would get a long lecture if I came home after a day of
sailing with a sun burn. In contrast, he didn't raise his voice when I totaled
my mother's car. When I meet folks that grew up on LIS during this time and
they hear my name they often ask: " Was your Dad the guy that made us wear sun
block when we came to race at Cedar Point." My dad would show up at a junior
regatta our club hosted with a basket full of sun block and explain why
everyone should wear it.
It’s great to see all the information you are publishing. Some of the routines
mentioned such as putting on the sun block before you venture out for the day
or after you take a shower were all concepts my Dad drilled into us 40 years
* From Kevin Lewand: I’m a Melges 24 owner and have been sailing the Great
Lakes for over 25 years. My mom has had several bouts with skin cancer and
more recently, so has my father. My dad races with me and they both sail
casually down at their house in the Virgin Islands. Here’s what my mom had to
say about your article (in Scuttlebutt 2829):
“Thanks for the info. When we were out with the VI National Park chief
naturalist, a life-long, fair-skinned resident of St. John, he talked a lot
“It seems that most sunscreens have oxybenzone (or a relative) in them as the
main active ingredient. Scientists and naturalists have discovered that it is
a significant factor in the dying off of our coral reefs! Tons of sunscreen
washes off in the water each year. Oxybenzone activates a virus that causes
the coral to get sick and eventually die.
“Oxybenzone is a related to dioxin (which is a known carcinogen) and estrogen
(which is a suspected cause of breast cancer). It is outlawed in dosages over
3% in Europe and Australia. Dioxin also causes gene mutations by weakening the
string and causing breaks in the gene chain.
“All the Australians use sunscreen with zinc oxide or titanium oxide as the
active ingredient, plus wear rashers & hats. I have ordered some sunscreens
without oxybenzone to try. Go the website http://www.ewg.org/node/26217 for
some good info.”
Thought the ‘buttheads might find a little wisdom from “Mom”…
* From Bill Gibbs, President, Ocean Racing Catamaran Association: (re, story
in Scuttlebutt 2829) I think we have to credit the recession and the media
hype of Mexican drug violence with the reduction in size of the Newport to
Ensenada race. As for the risk, cruise ships still drop by several times a
week in Ensenada without incident. Tourists continue to drive to Ensenada
without experiencing violent crime. Mexican drug war violence is a bad thing,
akin to gang violence in Culver City or Oxnard. But millions drive thru these
cities without incident all the time.
It seems at first glance that a large number of boats defected to the Border
Run, the competing race. In reality many boats in the Border Run would not
have done NP-Ens in the best of times. I'm sure some boats did "defect" to the
shorter race, and for concerns with Mexican violence. But nothing like the raw
numbers suggest. My own NP-Ens ORCA multihull class has 7 boats, down from
over 25 in recent years. The Border Run has 31 multi's. Did all these multis
"switch" to the Border Run? Not at all. Of the 31 multis in the Border Run, a
mix of 24 beach cats, cruisers, day sailors, and non-racers chose the short
course. Of the remaining 7 doing the long Border Run, 5 were not qualified for
NP-Ens, and only one was a regular racing multi, though he had not done NP-Ens
Only time will tell if the Border Run becomes a SoCal enduring tradition.
NOSA's Ensenada Race has proven itself to be such a tradition, and I'm sure it
will survive the difficult times at hand.
About Twitter, we are not sure whether you should run to it or from it, but
for now Scuttlebutt is embracing it as a means to keep the ‘buttheads informed
in between the daily Scuttlebutt newsletters. People can subscribe to the
Scuttlebutt updates on Twitter, or now you can see them at the top of the
Scuttlebutt website, where we have developed a very cool dialogue box for the
Scuttlebutt “tweets” to get posted. Also, the Friday issue is usually where we
include the Photos of the Week and Video of the Week features. Amid all out
twittering, we ran out of time, but look for them to be in a special edition
of Scuttlebutt to come out Friday by noon PT. Subscribe to Twitter here:
I contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man
standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle. - Winston
Special thanks to Quantum Sails and PredictWind.com.
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