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SCUTTLEBUTT 3059 - Tuesday, March 30, 2010

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.

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Today's sponsors: Melges Performance Sailboats, North Sails, and Dinghy

Peter Lane and his wife Kristen are best known for their two-boat all
professional Melges 24 Brick House Team. While enjoying the high stakes
sailing game in that class, Peter recently had a revelation into the simpler
side of the sport. and he liked it. Here he shares his story:
I perhaps have an insight into the making sailing fun and expand sailing
debate - Scows. Now, I must admit that I was more than a little dismissive
of Scow sailing for many years (43 of my last 44 to be exact). But after
racing in the Melges 17 Midwinters at Lake Eustis Sailing Club (Eustis, FL),
not only am I a Scow convert and a new Melges 17 owner but, I think I have
glimpsed a way to keep sailing fun, friendly, and really competitive.

It may just be that Scows have Midwestern roots, but they were all, to a
person, the nicest, most accommodating people I have ever met sailing.
Everyone helps each other rig and launch boats. The local organizers invited
everyone out to dinner the night before the regatta started and we had a
great time meeting the other teams. The C Scows sail with two or three -
your choice and the race committee will hold your extra crew for you between
races. One C Scow had a four year old as the third and he was loving it.
Another C Scow sailed with five or six different people over the three days
and had a podium finish. I was pleasantly surprised to see the number of
teenagers sailing with their parents and apparently enjoying themselves. We
had two husband/wife teams, a couple of people sailing M17s for the first
time, and some seasoned pros that I have also raced against in the M24

No weight requirements, flexible crew numbers, and catered lunches ashore
between the morning and afternoon races. The boats are inexpensive (new or
used), plentiful (I heard rumors that they lend out MC Scows to anyone who
is interested), easy to sail and begin racing, but technical enough to
require real skill to do well and despite their outward appearances they are
pretty exciting. Others in the fleet clocked speeds over 15 knots downwind
and (6 to 7 knots upwind) on the winder days. The Melges 17 is every bit as
exciting and high tech as my Melges 24. We had a blast ripping up and
downwind when it was blowing 20 and learned a lot about lake tactics when
the wind was 8 to 10 knots.

If you are looking to fix your fleet, your junior program or your
relationship with your family, I urge you to spend a weekend this summer
sailing Scows in the Midwest. You don't need to buy a Scow, but we can all
learn a lot from how they build their fleets. Consider it the sailing
equivalent of "Field of Dreams." -- Forum,

Palma, Spain (March 29, 2010; Day 2) - It is still spring in the Med, and
wind conditions for the second day of the 41st Trofeo S.A.R. Princesa Sofia
Mapfre have been anything but steady. "It was definitely an interesting day
on the water," noted American Clay Johnson, currently 4th in the Laser
event. "It seemed like there were 2-3 big, persistent shifts on each beat,
and the tough call was when to dig in to your side and when to lead the
group to the next shift."

While Johnson maintained his day one position, some fared better while
others stumbled. Stu McNay/ Graham Biehl (USA) fell from the lead in the 470
to 12th; Amanda Clark/ Sarah Chin (USA) moved up in the 470 from 7th to 4th;
Paige Railey (USA) remains 8th in the Laser Radial while brother Zach Railey
(USA) stumbled out of the gate with BFD in the Finn. At the match racing
event, Sally Barkow (USA) won her qualifying group and advances to the
quarterfinals, while teammate Anna Tunnicliffe (USA) struggled today and
will need to claim one of the two remaining slots in the repecharge round.

A change in the weather is forecasted for this third event of the ISAF
Sailing World Cup. Said Johnson, "Tomorrow is supposed to be pretty gnarly.
Thirty-five knots and eight foot waves are forecasted, so there is already
talk of postponing in the morning to let the conditions settle down a bit.
Hopefully we get two more races in!"

Event website:
Clay Johnson website:
Clay Johnson video:

The Spring Rush is on at Melges USA as new Melges 32's, Melges 24's, Audi
Melges 20's, and Melges Scows are all being sent out the front doors of the
Melges Headquarters in Zenda, Wisconsin. With the Spring Rush brings special
deals which are noted at Check out the Audi Melges 20 Charter
Boats which will be available June 1st. Stay tuned to for further
spring specials and new boat availability.

If you have a preference for Caribbean competition, this past weekend
offered something for everybody. For the 100+ foot maxi yachts, the place to
be was the St Barths Bucket in the French West Indies. For all the 'smaller'
boats, the International Rolex Regatta was hosted by St Thomas Yacht Club in
the USVI. Photos from both below:

* St Barths Bucket:
* Intl. Rolex Regatta:

In the history of the America's Cup, only seven countries have reached the
America's Cup finals. What are they? (Answer below)

From the North Sails' Q&A forum, Stubby asked the following questions:
What is a screacher? What is a code zero? Is the code zero set on the end of
a bow sprit or aft of the fore stay as a staysail? What is the ideal wind
conditions for the code zero, screacher, A-kite genoa, symmetrical chute and
any other foresails I might be missing?

Comments from Chris Williams, Sail Designer:
Good question, after looking over our website I could not find any
information to provide links to visually describe each sail. To make matters
a little confusing different cultures and different classes sometimes have
similar names for sails which are actually quite different.

However, typically what is called a screecher is only used on multihulls.
This is generally a sail similar to a genoa flown off the spirt and a higher
halyard than the headstay. This sail can be used at tighter angles than a
Code Zero.

A Code Zero is typically flown off the bow, spirt and sometimes the pole.
The Code Zero usually has a mid girth of 75% of the foot length. This was a
requirement in the RRS (Racing Rules of Sailing ) to allow the sail to be
defined as a "spinnaker". However, this is typically regulated by handicap
rules or class rules now. Due to this girth restriction, the Code Zero is
typically larger or deeper in shape than ideal if the sail was unconstrained
by rules to allow the sails girth to measure in as 75% of the foot.

If you are looking for a sail only to cruise with we offer a product called
a G0, which has a smaller girth and is a much nicer sail than a racing Code

Wind angles which sails are used vary with windspeed. Typically the lighter
the wind the tighter angles you can sail with a sail. Generally you would
use the sails in the following order of apparent wind angles:

Genoa -> Screecher -> G0 -> Code Zero -> Asymmetric ->Symmetrical Spinnaker

Obviously few if any boats carry all these sails, so you tailor your
inventory to the fewest possible sails to meet your needs, for example:

- If you were cruising maybe you have a Genoa a G0 and maybe an Asymmetric.

- If you were racing you would have a Genoa or Jib then a Code Zero and
several Asymmetric's for different wind speeds.

- If you had a multihull a possible inventory would be a Jib, Screecher and
an Asymmetric.

Q&A forum:

North Sails is providing free sail care & repair on all new North sails
purchased in 2010. Honored anywhere in North's worldwide network of sail
care locations, you will be in good hands no matter where your travels take
you. Free sail care & repair is available on North cruising, racing, and
one-design sails. Sails MUST be registered online & some restrictions apply.
When performance & durability matter, the choice is clear:

* North Sails is offering a free hat to any North-powered boats who finished
1,2,3 in North America in 2009 (the North Victory List). The deadline to
'RSVP' for a free hat is April 1st. -- Details:

By Jos M Spijkerman, International Umpire/Judge

Summary of the Facts
Between the preparatory and starting signals, Ephesian on starboard tack and
Jupa on port tack approached each other head-to-head. Both boats were heavy
keelboats, 33 feet (10 m) long. Neither boat was aware of the other. The
bowmen on both boats, who normally would have been stationed by the
forestay, were handling their genoas, and no other crew members were keeping
a lookout. Ephesian was moving slowly with limited manoeuvrability. They
collided, causing serious damage to Jupa, who therefore retired. In the
resulting protest, Jupa was disqualified under rule 10 (opposite tacks), and
Ephesian was disqualified under rule 14 (avoiding contact). Ephesian
appealed, claiming that she could not have avoided Jupa by changing course
or speed.

Rule 14 begins 'A boat shall avoid contact with another boat if reasonably
possible.' This requirement means a boat must do everything that can
reasonably be expected of her in the prevailing conditions to avoid contact.
This includes keeping a good lookout, particularly in a crowded starting
line situation.

The protest committee concluded that if either boat had seen the other a
collision could have been avoided, even at the last minute, particularly if
Ephesian had hailed Jupa when it was clear that Jupa was not changing course
to keep clear. Until that moment, rule 14(a) allows a right-of-way boat to
delay acting to avoid contact. It follows that at that moment she must begin
to act in an effort to avoid contact. The word 'act' is not restricted to
changing course or speed. Hailing was an action that Ephesian could and
should have taken. Ephesian broke rule 14. Because the collision resulted in
damage, the protest committee's decision to disqualify Ephesian was correct
(see rules 14(b) and 64.1(a)). Her appeal is therefore dismissed.

Clearly, Jupa broke rule 10. As a result of the serious damage she suffered
in the collision, she retired from the race and thus took the applicable
penalty (see rule 44.1(b)). Rule 64.1(b) prohibits penalizing her further.
The disqualification of Jupa is reversed and she is to be scored DNF.


* (March 29, 2010) - They nine teams on the Qingdao to San Francisco leg of
the Clipper 09-10 Round the World Yacht Race have been racing for four weeks
now, with lead yacht 'Cape Breton Island' now just over 200 miles from the
finish. Trailing teams continue to escort the dismasted 'California', which
hopes to soon augment their engine power with a jury rig sail plan. The team
has had only engine power since the incident occurred on March 2st. -- Race

* Nineteen-year-old Oscar Mead from the United Kingdom has confirmed his
entry into the oldest solo round the world yacht race, the 30,000-mile VELUX
5 OCEANS which starts in France in October. Oscar hit the headlines last
year after becoming, at the tender age of 18, the youngest person ever to
compete in the Original Singlehanded Transatlantic Race (OSTAR). Initial
funding has enabled him to start the process of acquiring his chosen boat,
with a prospect lined up in France to be inspected within the next 10 days.

* An increase in pirate attacks in the Indian Ocean and Gulf of Aden should
be anticipated, with as many vessels held by pirates pending ransom
negotiations last week as roughly half the level experienced over the past
year. Pirates are now ranging ever further across the Somali Basin, with the
possibility of attacks occurring as far east as the coast of India and as
far south as Madagascar. In response to these warnings, the International
Sailing Federation has updated and re-issued its guidelines to yachts
contemplating making a passage through this region. -- Full report:

* Newport, RI (March 29, 2010) - Sail Newport's 2010 Brooke E. Gonzalez
Advanced Racing Clinic application deadline is April 1. The intense
three-day schedule (June 17-20) includes on-the-water drills, multiple
debriefs, and race training with an emphasis on boat speed and personal best
performance. Enrollment in the prestigious clinic is limited and sailors are
chosen through a resume process. Applicants must be at least 14 years old.
Interested Club 420, International 420, 29er, Laser Full Rig and Laser
Radial sailors are invited to submit resumes at

* CORRECTION: The World Sailing Speed Record Council announced that the
previous record holder of the outright Round the World record was skipper
Bruno Peyron (FRA) onboard 'Explorer'. Actually, Peyron set the record in
2005 sailing 'Orange 2'. --

Great deals at Dinghy Locker's upcoming 2010 Boat Swap and Tent Sale! Find
used Optis, C420s, Pixels and Lasers; 40% off select end-of-season
merchandise from Patagonia, Gill, Musto, Atlantis, Henri Lloyd. Plus burgers
and dogs! Call/click for info: (800) 941-2219,
151 Harvard Ave, Stamford, CT (I-95 Ex 6).

In the previous Matches of the America's Cup, only seven countries have
reached the America's Cup finals: Australia, Canada, England, Italy, New
Zealand, Switzerland, and United States. --

Please email your comments to the Scuttlebutt editor (aka, 'The
Curmudgeon'). Published letters must include writer's name and be no longer
than 250 words (letter might be edited for clarity or simplicity). 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 Gail M. Turluck: (re, Matthew Tobriner letter in Scuttlebutt 3058)
Sailboat races ARE scheduled. Most of them start on time. There really is no
difference from no-wind or huge storm Sailboat Race Starts to Major League
Baseball Rain Delays, Professional Golf thunderstorm stops, College Football
lightning game stops, etc. Look at all the skiing rescheduling this past
Olympics! There just has not been enough education on the vagaries of
weather and how critical those changes are to starting a sailboat race on
time and establishing a "rain-out policy" that media producers can wrap
their arms around. We have Gary Jobson, Tucker Thompson and others to help
improve this situation.

* From John McNeill: (re, letter in Scuttlebutt 3057)
Thank you, John Rumsey, for finally picking up the critical element to
making any regatta worth watching!

Speed and the edge of disaster may make for exciting times for the sailors,
but it is the tactical encounters in a pre-start or at a mark that truly
bring the "oohs" from any viewing audience. To give up tacking duels and the
roundup exercise for speed takes our sport one more step to boring for the
spectator. This was evident in the 33rd America's Cup, as the end of race
one was the end of the competition for all intents and purposes, and also
evident in the recent Louis Vuitton Series, as tactical maneuvers elicited
"oohs" from the crowd in the Village every time.

Whatever the design selected for the 34th Match, I truly hope that a way
will be found to preserve the tactical skill element and close combat that
brings the viewer to compelling attention.

* From Damian Christie: (re, Stephen Roffey letter in Scuttlebutt 3058)
Larry Ellison won the America's Cup on the water - there is little else to
be gained from continuing litigation.

Future trustees of the Cup (including GGYC) should heed the lessons of the
33rd Cup match and realise that there is more to lose than gain from
attempting to manipulate the rules. For example, a smarter, less arrogant
Ernesto Bertarelli may have enhanced his prospects of victory if he had
acceded to a 32nd America's Cup-style protocol for the 33rd match. Instead
he gambled on a one on one match in the most extreme yachts permitted under
the Deed of Gift and lost - VERY BADLY. Even if his catamaran had been
competitive, Bertarelli was still taking a big gamble. It will never be
addressed by the court now but there was enough doubt about the legitimacy
of Alinghi's US-built sails to put it in contempt of the Deed's construction
in country provisions. In a conventional America's Cup regatta, this issue
would have been settled by mutual consent. Perhaps the persisting doubts
over the CIC issue in Deed of Gift matches may act as a deterrent.

The behaviour of the Swiss - from Bertarelli down to the SNG race committee
- was reprehensible, but ultimately, they are the ones with egg on their
faces. Future trustees will hopefully conclude that they will always benefit
more from the Cup's mutual consent arrangements than they ever will from a
Russian roulette-style Deed of Gift match!

* From David Shulman:
I see the wisdom of dropping the litigation in the NYS Courts. I do NOT see
any wisdom in ISAF not proceeding to investigate and resolve the Race
Committee staff revolt issue.

If ISAF is to regain the respect of the sailors, it must preserve the
self-policing principles of sailboat racing by giving all those who
participate the discipline to follow the RRS even if contestants (or others)
believe no one is watching.

ISAF already damaged itself with the '' secret Alinghi deal". World
governing credibility is at stake here.

When someone says, "Can I help with dinner?" they really are saying, "Why
isn't it already on the table?"

Special thanks to Melges Performance Sailboats, North Sails, and Dinghy

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