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SCUTTLEBUTT 3253 - Monday, January 10, 2011
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: Quantum Sails and APS.
NEARLY A MODERN DAY BERNARD MOITESSIER
Dr. Laura Schlessinger - who is based in Santa Barbra, CA - might be best
known as a nationally syndicated American talk radio host. However, she has
the sailing bug big time, and is finishing construction on a custom Tim
Kernan designed 46 footer that she plans to race in the March 2011 Newport
Beach, CA to Cabo San Lucas Race.
While having been largely committed to buoy racing, she first ventured
offshore nearly a year ago in a similar race to Cabo on her J-125 (Warrior),
winning overall in both ORR and PHRF. Here she comments on the experience:
I did the Cabo race purely for the adventure. I had never been out on the
open ocean and simply wanted the experience. By the end of the first day and
one-half, I was cold, damp, exhausted and generally miserable. I clicked my
heels but couldn't get back to Santa Barbara. Then, on the second and
one-half day I got with the rhythm of it and can't tell you enough how much
I absolutely loved it: huge turtles, whales, dolphin, the horizon with no
land and no other boats - it was just amazing!
We followed the progress of all the boats on the computer and we were well
behind our competition for most of the race. Ultimately - I didn't care that
much because we all were having such a fun time with each other and with the
elements. I would guess that if the amount of laughter aboard a boat won a
trophy - we'd get it. On the last day I woke up from my four hour down-time
to find zero wind. I did see a shark fin and wouldn't let anyone swim! We'd
gone way out to sea and were totally becalmed. I decided I was the "wind
witch" and would bring wind any moment now. They all scoffed at me - until I
pointed to some tiny cat paws on the surface of the water growing larger in
diameter. Suddenly, we started to take off.
The best part of the entire experience was that night when we were coming
into Cabo. I was driving (that's my job) through the moonshine on the water.
It was so beautiful I was crying. Believe it or not, I turned to my crew and
suggested we forget the finish line and just keep sailing. I meant it - as
strange as that may sound. I got voted down, so over the finish line we
came. From the day I suggested we do that Cabo race, I never considered the
possibility of winning. I just wanted the adventure. And this year, we are
doing the Cabo race to qualify for Transpac - talk about an adventure. --
The discounted entry period for the March 2011 Newport Beach, CA to Cabo San
Lucas Race is on January 15, with sixteen premiere race boats already
committed to the race. Details here:
=> Curmudgeon's Comment: Did I get too cute on the headline? For those
still wondering, it was Moitessier who was poised to be the first to solo
circumnavigate the globe by sail in 1969 when he decided to not finish in
the UK and instead sailed on to Tahiti. Really, who could blame him?
THROWING LITTLE RHODY A BONE
Newport's loss of the America's Cup final Match races behind them, state
leaders and Cup officials went back to the drawing board Friday to try to
hammer out a deal to bring pre-regatta races to the City by the Sea. "Now
it's not a done deal, but I'd say ... we're probably 75 percent of the way
there," Thomas Ehman, head of Oracle Racing external affairs, said Friday
at the State House with Governor Chafee at his side.
Ehman said he's "confident" the state can complete negotiations with
America's Cup officials in the next couple of weeks, when he hopes to reach
a final agreement. Ehman said he traveled to Rhode Island this week with
"two asks" for Rhode Island: Could the state be ready to host an America's
Cup World Series event this September and could the state be the Cup's
backup plan for the final Match races in 2013 if, for any reason, the deal
with San Francisco falls apart? -- Providence Journal, read on:
BAY TOUR: Organizers of the America's Cup sailing race said that if the race
were held in San Francisco, the bay would act as a natural arena, giving
millions of people the chance to see the multimillion-dollar yachts race
past Alcatraz and the Transamerica Pyramid. The 45-minute course will send
the 72-foot catamarans from Crissy Field along the Embarcadero before they
loop around and pass Treasure and Angel islands. The Golden Gate Bridge,
Marin County, San Francisco and the East Bay hills will be a constant
backdrop to the race, televised throughout the world. Read more:
TICKING CLOCK: There's a year's worth of environmental review to
accomplish, and then some piers to overhaul, and meanwhile in New Zealand
we're closing in on the launch of the first of the one-design 45s that are
supposed to kick off the America's Cup World Series in Europe early this
summer. It's a race to the race, on every hand, but come 2013 we will be
six years on from the last 'proper' match for the greatest prize in
sailing - one year longer than it took Auckland to get ready after New
Zealand took the Cup from San Diego in 1995 - so I hope the persistent
rumors of '2014' are just that, rumors. -- Kimball Livingston, full
WHEN SHOULD YOU CONSIDER A MEMBRANE SAIL?
The ability of a sail to maintain its shape is proportional to the strength
and stretch resistance of the materials used. Shape affects upwind sailing
and is instrumental in controlling heel and the amount of weather helm. A
woven sail begins to deteriorate with its first use. After 5 or 6 years it
will be intact, but the flying shape will be poor. A membrane sail holds its
shape for most of its life, but after 5 or 6 years the sail is likely to
break and become unusable. Choosing between longevity and performance
depends on individual needs, requirements and expectations. Find the right
sail for you at http://www.quantumsails.com
STRATEGIC CAPSIZING AND ZIGZAGGING
Belmont, NSW, Australia (January 9, 2011) - With two days of racing under
its belt, the 110 competitors at the 2011 Zhik Moth Worlds have come to
realize that success at this event will prove no different than any other
big championship. You can't be tactically smart unless you are among the
fastest, and you can't maintain speed throughout the course unless you are
at an elite boat handling level.
However, with the inordinate amount of weed on the course, the boat handling
toolbox must include a new technique: the intentional weed-clearing capsize.
There is no other means to clear the blades. "I had one beat where I needed
to flip five times to clear weed," shared American Matt Knowles. "Really
frustrating to flip and watch the boats you've worked hard to pass sail away
from you, but on the other hand it is hard to keep your boat in the air if
you don't clear the weed."
Lighter winds on Saturday kept the fleet mixed, but with stronger winds on
Sunday seeing some gusts up to 25 and above, the top guys had big smiles on
their faces as it was a boat handling day that separated the boys from the
men. And the big man on campus continues to be Australian National Champion
Nathan Outteridge, whose first race fifth has since been overshadowed by
five straight bullets.
Brad Funk currently leads the American contingent in ninth. After a hiccup
in the first race on Saturday where he earned a DNF for sailing with the
wrong qualifying fleet, Brad got his mojo back today, scoring a 2, 4, 2 on
the leader board.
"We were doing 17 knots upwind, while pushing 28 knots downwind, hiking all
the way around," said Brad. "It was all about risk management; when to
tack and gybe, relative to the laylines and puffs in which you could sail or
not. The wind was off the land and very puffy with 10 degree shifts. If you
tacked on a header puff, a 100 meter gain went to you.
"Downwind, it was similar. Working your way to the end of the puff
(remember we are traveling faster the puffs), you would head up a little
keeping speed until you reached the back edge of the next puff, then hike
like mad and bear away until you race through the puff and catch up with the
leading edge again (zigzagging down the course.) So exhilarating!"
The format of the Worlds is based on a qualification (4 days) and final
phase (2 days). The finishing position of the qualification phase moves
forward into the finals as a single, not-discardable race. Strong breeze is
forecasted again for Monday.
Results after Day 2: http://tinyurl.com/Day2-010911
VIDEO: Here the key class players discuss the wing sail and how it fits into
the future of the class: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D9BrTOGXmU0
Brad Funk: http://www.funksailing.com/
Matt Knowles: http://knowlesmoth.blogspot.com/
Chris Rast: http://fasterandhigher.blogspot.com/
PEDAL TO THE METAL
(January 9, 2011: Day 10) Today has been a day for winding up the IMOCA 60s
and letting them fly - at 15-20 knots for the top half of the fleet, with no
boat travelling at under 12 knots in this evening's update. While the
leaders enjoy perfect trade wind surfing conditions, they can also enjoy
stretching their advantage - the gap between first and last boat has grown
by over 100 miles over the course of today and now exceeds 570 miles.
Spainards Iker Martinez and Xabi Fernandez on Mapfre remain the fastest boat
on the course bar Virbac Paprec, topping 18 knot average speeds over the
past hour. Martinez and Fernandez, double Olympic medallists and three time
European and World champions in the 49er Class, have become Spain's most
successful sailing team ever. Both skippers are taking on the Barcelona
World Race 2010 as a new offshore challenge, following their experiences in
the 2005 and 2008/09 editions of the Volvo Ocean Race
The British skipper, Alex Thomson, has today been declared medically fit to
join the Barcelona World Race after making a satisfactory recovery from the
emergency appendectomy on 29th December which prevented him from starting on
31st December. Logistical planning is under way to have Thomson join his
IMOCA Open 60 Hugo Boss to replace substitute co-skipper Wouter Verbraak
(NED) in the Cape Verde Islands.
Standings (top 5 of 14 as of 20:01:24)
1. Virbac-Paprec, Jean Pierre Dick & Loick Peyron, 22,798 nm DTF
2. Foncia, Michel Desjoyeaux & Francois Gabart, 41.4 nm DTL
3. Estrella Damm Sailing Team, Alex Pella & Pepe Ribes, 177 nm DTL
4. Mirabaud, Dominique Wavre & Michele Paret, 190.5 DTL
5. Mapfre, Iker Martinez & Xabi Fernandez, 293.9 nm DTL
BACKGROUND: This is the second edition of the non-stop Barcelona World Race,
the only double-handed race around the world. Fourteen teams are competing
on Open 60s which started December 31st and is expected to finish by late
March. The 25,000 nautical mile course is from Barcelona to Barcelona via
three capes: Good Hope, Leeuwin and Horn, Cook Strait, putting Antarctica to
starboard. Race website: http://www.barcelonaworldrace.org
SCUTTLEBUTT SAILING CALENDAR
Events listed at http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/calendar
* Miami, FL (January 9, 2011) - The second regatta of the Etchells class
four event 2011 Jaguar Cup series, the Sidney Doren Memorial, was held this
weekend on Biscayne Bay. The unusually fickle winds and cold temperatures
that plagued the last few regattas held on the Bay were replaced by temps in
the 70's, and 10 to 20 knot winds on Saturday with lighter winds on Sunday.
Overcoming an opening score of 28-12, Jud Smith's team of Moose McClintock
and Jim Porter, closed strong with a 2-1-2 to win. Scott Piper held on for
2nd place, and Buddy Cribb ended up in 3rd. -- Full report:
* Langkawi, Malaysia (January 7, 2011) - Thai Noppakao Poonpat had a bullet
in the last race of the International Optimist World Championship to take
the 2010 title, leading the race almost from the start. Noppakao, who was
the first girl and finished fourth overall at the 2009 Worlds in Brazil, led
a Thailand team that won both the Team Race Worlds and the Nations Cup. Top
North American was Wade Waddell (USA) in 11th who led the U.S. team that
also included Christopher Williford, Duncan Williford, Richard Schuurmans,
and Harry Koeppel to fourth in the Nations Cup. -- Results:
* Queensland, Australia (January 7, 2011) - Glenn Ashby beat out 73 boat
fleet to win the title of Australian A Class National Champion. After 7
races, Ashby built a 10 point margin over Steven Brewin in second overall,
who was followed by Darren Bundock in third, Andrew Landenberger in fourth,
and class newcover Dean Barker from New Zealand in fifth. -- Results:
* (January 9, 2011; Day 25) - Sailing in moderate offwind conditions, VELUX
5 OCEANS leader Brad Van Liew (USA) is nearing the end of Leg 2 from Cape
Town, SA to Wellington, New Zealand. With 1349 nm remaining to the finish,
Van Liew holds a lead of 342 nm over Zbigniew Gutkowski (POL). --
* Mar del Plata, Argentina (January 8, 2011) - Argentine team Belen Tavella
and Franco Greggi fought hard this week at the 2011 29er World Championship
in conditions that challenged their skills on and off the water. The
deadlock between the top two boats that began on the first day of the
championship continued all the way until beyond the last race. After the
third place team retired from the last race due to an infraction on the
water, Tavella/Greggi and Bettini/Gwozdz remained tied for first, with the
tie-breaker in favor of Tavella/Greggi. -- Full report/results:
TIE ANOTHER ONE ON
The holidays and their parties are behind us so it's time to focus back on
what's important, getting your boat ready for next season! In an effort to
help take the sting out of it we at APS, "The World Leaders in Outfitting
Performance Sailors", encourage you to take advantage of our Annual Rope and
Rigging Sale. From now until the end of January save 25% on rigging
services, 20% on one design packages, and 15% on raw cordage and wire. Come
on, with these kinds of savings you really shouldn't feel bad about tying
another one on! Details: http://bit.ly/RigSale
Scuttlebutt strongly encourages feedback from the Scuttlebutt community.
Either submit comments by email or post them on the Forum. Submitted
comments chosen to be published in the newsletter may be limited to 250
words. Authors may have one published submission per subject, and should
save their bashing and personal attacks for elsewhere.
NOTE: Commentary last week stemming from the PUSSES AND WUSSES report in
Scuttlebutt 3251 'outgrew' the Letter Section of the Scuttlebutt
newsletter. For further comment, the initial story and the follow-up letters
have been added to the Forum. Here is the link:
* From Paul Henderson: (re, IS SAILING A SPORT? in Scuttlebutt 3250)
Many years ago when I was sailing Flying Dutchman, training for the
Olympics, I was on a committee with one of Canada's Gold Medal Women's
Downhill Skiers. I asked her if she wanted to go sailing at the RCYC. The FD
was unique as that was the start of the popularity of trapeze boats although
the Int. 14 had tried and outlawed them before WWII.
I strapped her into the harness and off we went in a wonderful 15-18 kt
breeze on Toronto Bay, screaming up and down on wonderful planing reaches.
When she got in she said:
"I have never been so scared in my life," she admitted. "I thought we were
going out on a yacht to drink beer!" To which I replied, "Like skiing,
sailing has a very broad spectrum of adherents. Some say they are skiers,
especially apres skiers, while others hurtle themselves downill at 70 mph.
Some sailors sit on their ass and drink beer while others love planing
across Toronto Bay with a famous athlete on the trapeze!"
If you believe it is sport, it is. If you do not, who cares!
* From Corky Aucreman:
We would all benefit from re-reading Phil Edwards 1997 book, "You Should
Have Been Here an Hour Ago".
The essential message is: "There is a need in all of us for controlled
danger; that is, a need for an activity that puts us----however briefly----
on the edge of life. Civilization is breeding it out of us, or breeding it
down in us, this 'go-to-hell' trait. Gradually the day-to-day people, the
hackers, are taking over. There are, as you read, this uncounted millions of
people who now go through life without out any sort of real vibrant kick.
The legions of the unjazzed."
They are easy to recognize by the time spent in front of the TV, watching
their 'sports', rather than out actually doing one.
"But surfers, as you will learn from reading this book, have one way. God
knows, there are other ways. Each to his special danger. Skiing is not
enough. Sailing is near. Ski jumping is almost. Automobile racing has got
it. Bullfighting makes you dead. The answer is surfing."
Nowadays, we might add things like extreme snowboarding, wind/kite surfing,
and skydiving to the list.
The point is that to be a 'sport' there has to be an element of
risk/danger (preferably physical), hopefully combined with intellectual
capacity. It also can't be too one-sided (hunting). Golf, Ski-do, Baseball,
Tiddlywinks and Poker doesn't count. It can be argued that the latter
activities take development of "skill", but the other essentials are
missing, which makes them "activities", not Sport.
* From Eric Robbins:
As you might imagine, the Lauderdale event (in Scuttlebutt 3252) was not the
only Hangover Bowl to be held on New Year's Day! My old club, Cedar Point YC
in Westport, CT held their 29th Annual Hangover Bowl in Lasers. Photos and
report at Cedar Point YC website. Results here:
My new Club, Davis Island YC in Tampa, FL, held their 2nd Annual Hangover
Bowl, with "creative" courses and rules invented by the RC as they saw fit.
We had a couple of Lasers, a couple of Fireballs, a couple of Windmills, a
Flying Scot, and a Snipe. Race report, results, and some very interesting
Sailing Instructions here:
=> Curmudgeon's Comment: Not bad for a sport so steep in cocktail
* From Jonathan McKee:
Congratulations to Stan Honey and Anna Tunnicliffe, this year's recipients
of the US Rolex. I have known Stan (slightly) for 35 years, and he has never
failed to impress me with his passion, intellect, sharing spirit, and love
of sailing. I once wrote him a short email, asking him about some ocean
routing questions. He replied with a short treatise that was incredibly
nuanced and interesting. I still read it at times when I need inspiration.
What a great role model to all of us!
"A healthy body leads to a healthy mind. No question - if you're
physically fit, you're mentally alert. One of the biggest problems with
modern education is its attitude to sport. We were expected to do some form
of exercise every day when I was at school, with the result that we were fit
and wiry. That's not the case now. Children don't get pushed physically at
a time when they need it." -- Sir Robin Knox-Johnston (GBR), who in 1969
was the first to complete a non-stop solo circumnavigation of the globe. --
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