SCUTTLEBUTT 3325 - Thursday, April 21, 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: Harken and Ullman Sails.
FEELING RICHER THAN LARRY
By Reynald Neron
I have read all the criticisms around the new format of the America's Cup.
Big multihulls. not so much match racing than drag racing. Court rulings
almost as obscure as the ego of the very rich people fighting like kids in
the playground ("mine is bigger" kind of fight).
It seems that many people, just like me, long for the monohull racing we
used to watch with delight, when the 12 Meters and the International
America's Cup Class (IACC) were fighting for the "Old Mug" on the water.
Well, I found a way to relive that.
I am lucky enough to be the current skipper of IACC AUS 31.
AUS 31 was the second boat in 1995 for the OneAustralia syndicate. After
AUS 35 sank during the round robins, AUS 31 was used to qualify for the
final of the Louis Vuitton Cup (LVC), and was only defeated by Black Magic
(NZL 32 led by Kiwi skipper Russel Coutts). Black Magic went on to win the
29th America's Cup.
In 1999-2000, AUS 31 raced in the LVC with James Spithill at the helm. Yes,
that same James Spithill. So I feel kind of proud to now be at the helm,
and racing her every day in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
The Mexican tourism company "Cabo Adventures" runs four IACC yachts: NZL
81, NZL 82, AUS 29 and AUS 31. Every day, we race one Aussie yacht against
one Kiwi yacht. We have a professional crew of five, and while this is not
enough to run these challenging yachts, sailing enthusiasts join us to sail
the yachts and live the excitement of a match race.
And believe me, we race seriously. First, because I would not have it any
other way. Secondly, because if we did not, our customers would "feel" it.
Agreed, we do not hoist spinnakers. But my brief when I joined the company
tells it all: "Race as hard as you can, respect the rules, don't hurt
The boats are as close to the originals as possible. The company added a
small engine to make it easier to go in and out of the Cabo San Lucas
marina, some lazy jacks to avoid dropping the mainsail on the head of our
guests. but that's about it.
Depending on where our guests come from, we try and get a country vs.
country competition. Most likely, it will be USA against Canada/rest of the
world. I find that having a national ambiance onboard creates even more
competitiveness for my guests and crew. The race is always more exciting.
Because I am always glad to answer any questions about the next America's
Cup, I like to think that, in my own way, I help promote sailing in
general, and the AC events in particular. I believe this is the best kind
of marketing campaign you can dream of for the next AC events.
More importantly, I make people happy. Sailors are excited to get that kind
of racing experience one only can dream of. Non-sailors just cannot believe
how the yachts are handled in close racing quarters.
And when I see all the grins on everybody's faces, I feel richer than
NOTE: Here are a couple options to get the America's Cup experience...
Cabo San Lucas, Mexico: http://www.cabo-adventures.com/tours/americas-cup
San Diego, USA: http://www.stars-stripes.com/
UNANSWERED QUESTIONS... NOW ANSWERED
When the March 31st entry deadline was reached for the 34th America's Cup,
and the rush of last minute submissions had been announced, there were two
questions that remained: would late entries be accepted and would there be
a Defender Series.
The Protocol for the 2013 Match provides for both. Late entries would
require a $100,000 penalty. The Defender Series, which has not occurred
since the Americans failed in their defense of the 29th America's Cup in
1995 in San Diego, would require multiple Defender entries.
Tom Ehman, newly appointed Vice Commodore of the Golden Gate Yacht Club,
answered both questions by email for Scuttlebutt:
"I write on behalf of the GGYC America's Cup Committee in reply to your
questions to ACRM's Jane Eagleson, which she forwarded to me.
"Under the Protocol, GGYC can accept late entries, but we are under no
obligation to do so. Indeed, we advised prospective teams well before the
31 March deadline that we were not likely to accept late entries given the
the large number of on-time entries, and the need for teams to get on with
ordering AC45s, etc. It is, however, possible a well-funded/organized late
entry from a club in a country not already represented in AC34 could come
forward and GGYC would give it due consideration.
"The Protocol also provides for a Defender Series if there is more than one
Defender entry. There is, however, only one Defender entry (ORACLE Racing).
"There are no pending late entries (Challengers or Defender Candidates)."
Here is the list of Defender and Challenger entries:
Defender - 1
Oracle Racing, Golden Gate Yacht Club (USA)
Challenger - 14
Aleph-Equipe de France, Aleph Yacht Club (FRA)
Artemis Racing, Kungliga Svenska Segal Sallskapet (SWE)
China Team, Mei Fan Yacht Club (CHN)
Emirates Team New Zealand, Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron (NZL)
Energy Challenge, Yacht Club de France (FRA)
Mascalzone Latino, Club Nautico di Roma (ITA)
Team Australia, Multihull Yacht Club of Queensland (AUS)
Venezia Challenge, Club Canottieri Roggero di Lauria (ITA)
White Tiger Challenge, Sail Korea Yacht Club (ROK)
Three challengers - Confirmed/Confidential
Two challengers - In vetting process
ATTRITION: Cupinfo.com reports that Aleph Team France could be the first
Challenger to drop out of the race. The team needs to have sponsorship in
place by April 30 if they want to continue, but to date Aleph has not
reached their funding goals. All the teams must submit a $200,000 USD
Performance Bond to the America's Cup Event Authority by April 30 to cover
participation in the AC45-based World Series for 2011-2012. --
CAPSIZE: Emirates Team New Zealand confirmed that their AC45 had capsized
in Auckland while training on Tuesday. The yacht was righted without
incident and it sailed back to base with minor damage to the top of the
wing. -- SailWorld, full story:
HARKEN TECH TIP #2
Polarized eye protection is critical for sailors because the intensity of
glare on the water can damage eyesight. Polarized lenses filter out light
that bounces off the water and acquires a "horizontal polarization,"
traveling along your line of sight. That's not all though. Besides
protecting your eyesight, polarization helps you spot wind patterns and see
under the water's surface. Go polarized and go Harken - with 6 coatings
designed to increase clarity and contrast, they're rated among the best
polarized sunglasses you can buy - and at a price you can afford. Read the
KEEPING THE WHEEL ON THE BUS
An Olympic campaign can be an exhausting effort, and American Sally Barkow
was witness to watching the wheels fall off her team's bus as they
approached the 2008 Summer Olympics. Dominant in the first half of the
quad, her women's keelboat team of Debbie Capozzi and Carrie Howe - which
had been together since 2003 - had lost their edge.
Still a strong medal contender at the start of the Qingdao Games, the
trio's struggles continued. "It was a tough series for us," recalled
Barkow, "followed by the worst medal race we had ever sailed in the history
of medal races. But that is the sport. Can't be perfect every time, and
sometimes when you want it the most, nothing goes your way."
After the 2008 Games, Barkow took a break. But when the women's events for
the 2012 Games eliminated keelboat fleet racing and replaced it with
keelboat match racing, it was just the shuffle Barkow needed. She kept a
low profile while honing her match race skills, allowing the other American
teams led by Anna Tunnicliffe and Genny Tulloch to get the attention. But
now she is busting out.
After finishing second to Tulloch in the finals at the 2010 U.S. Women's
Match Racing Champion, and besting both American rivals while getting
second at the 2010 ISAF Women's Match Racing World Championship, Barkow
finds herself now at the top of the standings for the 2010-11 ISAF Sailing
World Cup season.
With teammates Alana O'Reilly and Elizabeth Kratzig-Burnham, they started
2011 with a bronze medal at US SAILING's Rolex Miami OCR, in January, and
then went on to win a gold medal earlier this month at the Princess Sofia
Trophy, in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. Tunnicliffe is third in the World Cup
standings after finishing second and third in the same events.
Having shuffled crews during her ascension, Barkow seems to have locked in
with O'Reilly and Kratzig-Burnham. Speaking of their recent victory, Barkow
notes, "We are a fairly new team. Our biggest strength was to find a way to
improve through the event. The conditions changed every day, and we really
tried to focus on the conditions for that day and adjust accordingly."
The fourth stop of the seven event World Cup season will be in Hyeres,
France this week. Scheduled for April 24-29 across 10 Olympic and two
Paralympic classes, the 43rd French Olympic Sailing Week expects to host
over 800 sailors from more than 50 countries. And Barkow's team will be
there, wheels on the bus and all.
USSTAG (4/20/11): http://tinyurl.com/USSTAG-042011
Interview (4/20/11): http://tinyurl.com/USSTAG-SB-042011
Interview (3/25/2009): http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/news/09/0325/
THE HOTTEST DUO IN SAILING
It has been announced that Olympic gold medalists Iker Martinez and Xabi
Fernandez will lead Team Telefonica, the latest entry into the Volvo Ocean
The Spanish sailing heroes won gold in the 49er class at the 2004 Athens
Olympics and silver at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, along with three World
Championships and three European Championships podiums. The duo will be
competing in their third consecutive Volvo Ocean Race, finishing third with
Telefonica Azul in the last edition of the race.
"Thanks to their exceptional sporting abilities and personal qualities,
Iker and Xabi have managed to perform on both fronts," said the CEO of Team
Telefonica Pedro Campos."Not only they won the 49er World Championships
last year but they finished the Barcelona World Race in a fantastic second
place with MAPFRE while preparing Team Telefonica's entry."
"The Volvo Ocean Race is the Formula 1 of ocean sailing," said Martinez,
who also designated as skipper of the boat. "It has the highest technology,
the best boats, the best people there. So really looking forward to going
there. At the same time, a big responsibility to be the skipper. It's a
huge responsibility. I really didn't want to do this before, because I
thought I was not prepared to do it." -- Full story:
MORE: Anne Hinton of SailRaceWin interviewed Iker and Xabi after their
Barcelona World Race finish: http://tinyurl.com/SRW-042011
VAN LIEW MUST JUST FINISH FINAL LEG
When American solo sailor Brad Van Liew finished the 5,900-mile fourth leg
of the VELUX 5 OCEANS solo round the world race from Punta del Este in
Uruguay on Tuesday, he was sailing into his hometown of Charleston with a
nearly undefeated record.
After setting off on October 17 from La Rochelle, France to Cape Town, the
race then took the four boat Eco 60 fleet on legs to Wellington in New
Zealand, Uruguay, and Charleston before the fifth leg returns the fleet to
France. This final 3,600 nm leg Charleston to La Rochelle starts May 14.
In each of the five legs, skippers accrue points through speed gates on
each leg and by their finishing position in the leg. Thus far, Brad has won
each of the four legs, and has accrued maximum points at the speed gates in
three of the four legs. It was his choice in the latest leg to forgo the
speed gate points (he posted the third fastest time) and rather choose a
better course to Charleston.
Brad's position in the overall standing is untouchable assuming he finishes
the final leg. The Sailing Instructions state that "A yacht shall complete
all legs in accordance with the rules to be eligible for any overall
placing or prize." But more immediately, this stipulation currently puts
the standings for second in question.
Derek Hatfield (CAN) crossed the finish line on Wednesday in Charleston
Harbor at 07.36 am local time to take second in the leg. This finish would
put Hatfield even on points with Zbigniew Gutkowski (POL) for second
overall, assuming 'Gutek' finishes the fourth leg. But that is a big if for
the Polish skipper, who remains in port in Fortaleza, Brazil, repairing his
Eco 60 yacht Operon Racing as well as recovering from a broken rib.
Race website: http://www.velux5oceans.com/
"FIDELIS II" SWEEPS CRUISING CLASS AT BVI SPRING REGATTA
Ullman Sails customer Steve Montagnet and crew proved themselves in the
British Virgin Islands earlier this month - not only with their impeccable
choice of regattas, but also on the water where they won their division in
all three events of the BVI Spring Regatta & Sailing Festival! Racing
Beneteau Oceanis 440 "Fidelis II," the team won the cruising class in the
Bitter End Cup and Nanny Cay Cup - both distance races. And they claimed
their final win in the performance cruising class of the BVI Spring
Regatta, winning four of five total races.
Invest in (and enjoy) your performance. http://www.ullmansails.com
CALENDAR OF MAJOR EVENTS (Sponsored by West Marine)
Is your event listed on the Scuttlebutt Event Calendar? This free,
self-serve tool is the easiest way to communicate to both sailors and
sailing media. View all the events at
INDUSTRY NEWS UPDATES
The Industry News category of the Scuttlebutt Forum provides an opportunity
for companies to announce new products and services. Here are some of
- mobileGRIB for Android
- PassageWeather on your iPhone or Android
- New products from Tacktick
- i550 sportboat speed build by gougeon bros.
- Watershed Sailboats, sportboat plans for home build
View and/or post Industry News updates here:
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.
* From Michelle Slade (re, letter in Scuttlebutt 3323):
To the comment, "Still bothers me that America's Cup doesn't think TV is
vital to its fans", I'd like to point out it's been very well documented
that the America's Cup Event Authority has at the top of its priority list
the desire to completely overhaul the coverage of sailing for the America's
Cup at least, and you can read into that the trickle-down effect it will
have on the broadcasting of the sport in general, as has other technology
aspects of the Cup benefitted sailing.
Stan Honey and his team have developed cool technology that will change the
way that will make it way easier to enjoy, and for non-sailors, understand
sailboat racing. Also, I understand that America's Cup TV has commissioned
Sunset+Vine/APP to produce 98 weekly magazine programs between now and
September 2013, where Cup events such as the World Series will feature in a
weekly television program about the event, teams and personalities.
* From Fred Roswold (re, letter in Scuttlebutt 3323:
What is this focus everyone seems to have on "To attract wider
Have we all bought into the sailing professional's goal of making more
money? Or maybe we just want to be able to brag to our ball sports friends
about how popular sailing is getting with the TV crowd? Honestly, I don't
give a rip about sailing attracting wider audiences; particularly if we
have to dumb it down to do that.
I think that throwing away everything to chase those TV viewers is stupid.
In the first place they are certainly a very fickle bunch and anyhow it
buys us nothing. We don't need to be the next formula one and trying to do
so will eventually lead us to give away the sport we love in order to beat
WWF in the ratings game.
I don't see the benefit.
"One reason why I don't drink is because I wish to know when I am having a
good time." - Nancy Astor, British Parliament
SPONSORS THIS WEEK
APS - IYRS - New England Ropes - North Sails- J Boats
JK3 Nautical Enterprises - Quantum Sails - LaserPerformance
Harken - Ullman Sails - Gowrie Group - Hall Spars & Rigging
Need stuff? Look here: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/ssc/suppliers