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SCUTTLEBUTT 3340 - Thursday, May 12, 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: Ullman Sails, Atlantis WeatherGear, and J Boats.
JAPANESE DEBRIS FLOATING TOWARDS U.S. WEST COAST
A vast field of debris, swept out to sea following the Japan earthquake and
tsunami, is floating towards the U.S. West Coast, it has emerged. More than
200,000 buildings were washed out by the enormous waves that followed the
9.0 quake on March 11.
There have been reports of cars, tractor-trailers, capsized ships and even
whole houses bobbing around in open water. But even more grisly are the
predictions of U.S. oceanographer Curtis Ebbesmeyer, who is expecting human
feet, still in their shoes, to wash up on the West Coast within three
"I'm expecting parts of houses, whole boats and feet in sneakers to wash
up," Mr Ebbesmeyer, a Seattle oceanographer who has spent decades tracking
flotsam, told MailOnline. Several thousand bodies were washed out to sea
following the disaster and while most of the limbs will come apart and
break down in the water, feet encased in shoes will float, Mr Ebbesmeyer
said. "I'm expecting the unexpected," he added.
Members of the U.S. Navy's 7th fleet, who spotted the extraordinary
floating rubbish, say they have never seen anything like it and are warning
the debris now poses a threat to shipping traffic.
"It's very challenging to move through these to consider these boats run on
propellers and that these fishing nets or other debris can be dangerous to
the vessels that are actually trying to do the work," Ensign Vernon Dennis
told ABC News. "So getting through some of these obstacles doesn't make
much sense if you are going to actually cause more debris by having your
own vessel become stuck in one of these waterways."
Scientists say the first bits of debris from Japan are due to reach the
West Coast in a year's time after being carried by currents toward
Washington, Oregon and California. They will then turn toward Hawaii and
back again toward Asia, circulating in what is known as the North Pacific
Gyre, said Mr Ebbesmeyer. Read more: http://tinyurl.com/DM-051111
OLYMPIC SAILING CIRCUS CONTINUES
By Carol Cronin, 2004 Olympian
During the International Sailing Federation's mid-year meeting in St.
Petersburg, Russia, Olympic sailing made one step forward. Unfortunately,
it also took three steps back.
Here's the good news: the final slate for Rio 2016 includes a women's
skiff, one of the few places where what's "good for TV" and what's "good
for athletes" dovetail. Though the actual equipment hasn't yet been chosen,
the 29erXX seems a likely choice, especially since it was just recognized
as an ISAF international class.
For years I've followed the battle over whether to keep the Star in the
Games. Yes, it's a venerable boat with many visible heroes, but an arms
race to develop the fastest hull shape within the confines (and loopholes)
of a 100 year old set of class rules is ridiculous. And after eighty years
in the Olympic family, the class is established enough to carry on around
What really fries me is the elimination of the women's keelboat, the
Elliott 6m. Yes, I'm biased, both as an American (we could easily fill an
entire Olympic podium with our 2012 Olympic hopefuls) and as the skipper of
the first U.S. women's keelboat Olympic team. But even when I step beyond
my bias and look at what's good for our sport, this change still doesn't
make any sense.
The Elliott 6m was specifically developed to be the supplied equipment for
women's match racing in 2012. The boats are fun to sail (much more so than
the stodgy Yngling), fun to watch (ditto), and offer a modern platform for
keelboat racing, the segment of our sport with the largest participation.
For the past three and a half years, national sailing programs have
purchased pairs or fleets of these exciting boats, a significant investment
even for larger countries. ISAF has just waved two middle fingers at all
those programs - especially 2016 Games host Brazil, which took delivery of
their Elliotts on the same day as this final vote.
Worst of all, ISAF is justifying its decision as cost-reducing, when what
it really reduces is any return on investment. Eliminate match racing if
it's too expensive - but don't make this excellent keelboat obsolete after
only three years.
FT10 "LIKATIGER" GOES BIG AT 2011 BRISBANE TO GLADSTONE
In the recent 63rd Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race, Ullman Sails customer
David Turton and team proved their offshore prowess aboard Flying Tiger 10
"Likatiger", finishing first in class and fifth overall in PHRF! The crew
showcased their tactical ability and speed off the start line, leading most
of the 30-40' boats out of Moreton Bay. They also crossed the iconic
Australian 79' "Brindabella" 50nm into the 308nm race. "Likatiger" is
powered by a full Ullman Sails inventory that is custom-designed to fit the
needs of the boat's inshore and offshore racing schedule in Australia.
Invest in your performance. http://www.ullmansails.com.
The Olympic circuit heads now to Medemblik, Netherlands for the Delta Lloyd
Regatta 2011 on May 24-29, the fifth event of the 2010-11 ISAF Sailing
World Cup series. Thus far the organization has received 603 entries,
amassing a new record of 61 nationalities.
"We obviously followed the ISAF Mid Year Meeting in St. Petersburg with
great interest," said Arjen Rahusen, Chairman of the Organizing Committee.
"We look forward to the return of the catamarans and to even more high
performance spectacle with skiff sailors. On the other hand, we regret the
loss of the keel boats. As an organization we will miss the
audience-friendly action of the match racing."
Regarding the dismissal of the Women's Keelboat event, Dutch coach Mikael
Lundh commented: "The decision by the ISAF Council does not change anything
for my team. They can be competitive in anything."
Lundh also believes his country's investment in four Elliott 6ms certainly
remains important for the future: "They can continue to sail those in the
commercial market in the context of corporate events, as well as training
boats. There is now a small shift towards high performance, but keelboat
sailing should remain part of the Dutch federation."
Event website - http://www.deltalloydregatta.org
Twitter - http://twitter.com/#!/DeltaLloydRegat
Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/#!/deltalloydregattaswc
Online TV - http://www.deltalloydregatta.tv
CLASSIFYING WRITERS & BROADCASTERS
The ISAF Classification system is a service to classes and events who want
to define who they want to sail. If there is a limit on the number
professional sailors that can participate on a boat, the Classification
Code is the system that must be used.
The challenge of the Code is to fairly determine what types of activity
warrant a sailor to be classified as Group 3 (professional), and what is
permitted within the Group 1 (amateur) classification. One of the tools of
the Code is a list of over 120 frequently asked questions (FAQs), with
their answers helping to define Group 1 and 3.
Here are the FAQs for Writers, journalists, authors, broadcasters:
Q. May a writer or journalist of general articles on boating be a Group 1
A. (a) Yes, provided the articles do not include instruction on racing; or
(b) No. Writing that includes instruction and coaching (tactics, go-fast,
tuning , etc.,) of racing is a Group 3 activity
Q. May a crew member be paid to write or broadcast about a race in which he
is participating and remain Group 1?
A. Yes, provided he is paid only to write and not to compete in the race
and the payment or compensation does not have the purpose or effect,
directly or indirectly, of financing participation in the race. Otherwise
the sailor is Group 3.
Q. Is a writer who continues to receive royalties on an instructional book
written and published before the Qualification Period always a Group 3
A. No. He may apply to be a Group 1 sailor 24 months after the original
publication of the book or article provided
(a) No other instructional books have been written by him that would
disqualify him; and
(b) A substantial revision has not taken place within the Qualification
Q. When a journalist participates in a race and writes about it, does this
affect his classification?
A. Not through this activity, provided he is a paid writer who sails and
not a paid sailor who writes. However, a writer paid by the owner or a
sponsor to write about him, the company, or the campaign could well fall
within the definition of Group 3 if racing aboard the boat is an integral
part of his work.
ISAF Sailor Classification Code: http://tinyurl.com/ISAF-CODE-0111
ISAF Sailor Classification Code FAQS: http://tinyurl.com/CODE-FAQS-0111
WORLD MATCH RACING TOUR
Marseille, France (May 11, 2011) - Local sailor Damien Iehl and the
Portuguese wildcard Alvaro Marinho put in sublime performances on the
opening day of the 2011 World Match Racing Tour, topping the scoreboard
amongst the twelve teams assembled at Match Race France, the first stop of
the nine stage tour.
Amongst both Iehl and Marinho's victims was fellow Frenchman Pierre-Antoine
Morvan (FRA) Extreme Team Morbihan, a man who grabbed the headlines in the
morning with victories against three Tour Card Holders tipped as title
contenders - Ian Williams (GBR), Francesco Bruni (ITA) Mascalzone Latino
and Jesper Radich (DEN) Adrian Lee & Partners Racing Team. A defeat for
Iehl against Peter Gilmour (AUS) YANMAR Racing and against Bruni for
Marinho were to be the only blemishes on their 5-1 scorelines.
After the qualifying single round robin stage of 11 races, the top eight
teams will advance to the Quarter-Final stage. -- Full story:
Stage 1 - Qualifying (current standings)
Damien Iehl (FRA) French Match Racing Team 5-1
Alvaro Marinho (POR) Seth Sailing Team 5-1
Francesco Bruni (ITA) Mascalzone Latino 4-2
Bertrand Pace (FRA) Aleph Sailing Team 4-1
Phil Robertson (NZL) WAKA Racing Team 3-3
Peter Gilmour (AUS) YANMAR Racing 3-4
Pierre-Antoine Morvan (FRA) Extreme Team Morbihan 3-4
Torvar Mirsky (AUS) The Wave Muscat 2-2
Ian Williams (GBR) Team GAC Pindar 2-3
Jesper Radich (DEN) Adrian Lee & Partners 2-4
Alexis Littoz-Baritel (FRA) Savoie Mont Blanc 1-3
Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Mekonomen Sailing Team 0-6
RESULTS/ PAIRINGS: http://tinyurl.com/MRF-051111
UPDATES: The WMRT website has live updates posted during the racing each
day, and live stream video will start at 1300 local time on Thursday. --
SWORD FIGHT: International Umpire/Judge Jos M. Spijkerman noted that
Sailing Instructions have addressed the issue of the J/80 bowsprit:
"After the warning signal, the bowsprit shall not be extended until the
boat is on a downwind course and shall be retracted at the first reasonable
opportunity when not in use. A breach of this rule is not open to protest
by boats, but is subject to action by the Umpires in accordance with RRS
C8.2. This changes RRS C6.2 and C8.2. The Umpires will try to warn
competitors before penalising for not retracting the bowsprit at the first
reasonable opportunity. Unless the head of the spinnaker is above the
intersection of the headstay and the mast, the bowsprit shall not be
considered for the purpose of overlaps and finishing." --
DISCOVER: HEAVYWEIGHT PERFORMANCE IN LIGHTWEIGHT GEAR
Other folks have tried to lay claim to the "Lightest Performance Sailing
Jacket" crown, but ever since we introduced it in 2007, the Microburst
jacket has been the titleholder, hands down. The jacket weighs less than 12
oz., and for Spring '11, we've added what might be the coolest stowable
hood you'll find - made from our new NanoburstR stretch laminate, this hood
stows flat even when you don't fold it perfectly. There when you need it -
gone when you don't! Check out the jackets and the new AWG TV Microburst
Discover Your Atlantis
A TREASURED RITE OF PASSAGE
Charleston, SC (May 11, 2011) - Just 10 days remain before the start of the
777-mile Charleston Bermuda Race. This biennial contest, which began in
1997, was born of humble origins - the dream of two local sailors bent on
creating offshore adventure for themselves and their friends. With seven
previous editions now in its wake, the event has matured, evolving from
grassroots beginnings to become a fixture on the sailing calendar of the
southeastern U.S. and a celebrated spectacle for the media.
This time around, 12 boats will start the Charleston Bermuda Race, which
begins on May 21 in Charleston Harbor. "That's double the number of entries
that participated in 2009," explains Richard Speer, CEO of OnDeck Group
U.S., the firm that is staging the race in concert with the South Carolina
Maritime Foundation and the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club.
Speer credits this surge in numbers to several factors. "We've seen a
remarkable increase in interest regarding the race, both from the public
and from potential participants. Much of that interest is due to the fact
that Stephen Colbert of the Colbert Report will be competing, yet it's also
due to the fact that both Charleston and Bermuda are exceptionally
beautiful places to visit. In addition, the race also offers a challenging
course that takes the boats across the Gulf Stream, which for many sailors
is a treasured rite of passage." -- Race website:
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. These are some of the events listed on the calendar for this
May 12-15 - Oregon Offshore International Yacht Race - Astoria, OR, USA
May 13-15 - Snipe US Masters Championship - Miami, FL, USA
May 14 - Edlu Distance Race - Larchmont, NY, USA
May 14 - Velux 5 Oceans - Charleston, SC, USA
May 14-15 - Ahmanson Cup - Newport Beach, CA, USA
View all the events at http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/calendar
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
* Schaefer Marine 8" Carbon Fiber Winch Handle - NEW!
* 'America's Cup Trials & Triumphs' available as e-book
* Check out the Harken IPAD case from Line Honors!
* First Mate Pets Launches New Leash Collection
* Selden Dealer NY Harbor
View and/or post Industry News updates here:
* Gmunden, Austria (May 11, 2011) - The RC44 class is in Europe for the
RC44 Austria Cup on Lake Traunsee, the second stop of its five stage
circuit. Thirteen teams competed today for match race points applied to the
season championship, with Chris Bake's newly christened Team Aqua at the
top of the match racing leaderboard after two events. The format now
changes to fleet racing for the remaining four days of the event, with the
Paul Cayard led Katusha having won the opening fleet racing series in San
Diego last March. -- Full story: http://tinyurl.com/RC44-051111
* Group Experiential Learning, which has partnered with USSTAG to allow
corporations to sail with Olympians during team building or client
entertainment programs, will host two introductions to their signature
program "BoatWorks" in a one-day complimentary experiential sailing program
for leaders and HR professionals. The first "Taste of BoatWorks" will be
held on May 26 in partnership with Courageous Sailing Center, in Boston,
Mass. On June 29, the second "Taste of BoatWorks" will be held in
partnership with J World Annapolis, in Annapolis, Md. Details:
* Due to excessively high waters, the host club, Carlyle Sailing
Association, and the three supporting clubs on Carlyle Lake in Illinois
have announced the postponement of their 11th annual Leukemia Cup Regatta
on May 27-29. The event has been rescheduled for July 29-31. Contact
Regatta Chairman Rick Bernstein for information at firstname.lastname@example.org
* US POWERBOATING, an affiliate of US SAILING, has launched a new website
that provides powerboaters with educational resources designed to help hone
skills and learn more about the handling, cruising and instructor courses
being offered in the U.S. -- Details:
NEW J/108 NOW SAILING IN FLORIDA
The J/108 is the newest "performance cruiser" from J Boats. This
shoal-water capable 35' yacht has a comfortable interior, a spacious
cockpit and is easy-to-handle with a furling Code Zero on a fixed sprit.
She draws only 4' with board up and her twin rudders provide exceptional
control for a fun ride. http://www.jboats.com/j108
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 Matt Princing:
You are spot on about passive communication (in Scuttlebutt 3339). In
Michigan it has been a struggle economically for years with families having
less spendable income and choosing to spend it in different ways.
In the old days, you posted a NOR and people flocked to the event, then
websites took this over, but over time this passive communication lost its
charm. It is still a viable information source but not warm and fuzzy.
At Tawas Bay Yacht Club and Bay City Yacht Club in the heart of Michigan's
Great Lakes we have gone personal. We will each pick out our friends and
colleagues we enjoy sailing with or against and put out a personal email or
better yet a phone call to invite them to attend. We are not below shaming
them into coming either and have many times bribed with offers of beer and
lately free housing has been a hit.
* From John Beale: (re, Henry Morgan in SBUTT 3339)
During the latter half of the 1990s, Henry was foredeck boss on Weatherly
(1962 AC winner) for the Edgartown 12 Metre Regatta. His foredeck comrades,
Graham Ernst on the bow and myself on the mast, never ceased to be awed by
Henry's focus on making a success of our sets, gybes, douses, jib changes,
running tapes, packing, pre-feeds, and all the myriad of details that make
the front porch run well.
On shore, we found time to celebrate our success and critique our mistakes
as well as enjoy some liquid refreshment. To our everlasting joy and
amazement, we discovered that the three of us all shared the same August
birthday which often fell on the Friday through Sunday that we were in
Edgartown. Talk about a bonding experience. A great sailor! We will miss
* From Mark Reynolds:
It was great to read Andrew's account (in Scuttlebutt 3339) on how the Star
Worlds in 1994 inspired him as a young sailor. I was inspired in the same
way when the Star Worlds were held in San Diego in 1969 when I was sailing
my Sabot and then again in 1973 when I had moved to the Laser.
At the recent ISAF meeting in St. Petersburg, there was a banner in the
lobby with the line "Sailing a Lifetime Sport". During the debate over the
Olympic events, someone repeated this line as an argument for including
keelboats. He was then countered by an ISAF council member who said,
"Sailing may be a lifetime sport but that doesn't mean Olympic sailing is
for a lifetime."
The average age of the Star athletes at the last Olympics was only 34
(which I'd consider pretty youthful and younger than when Carl Lewis won
his last medal at 35!), but this story by Andrew highlights the correct
connection between the youth of the world and the Olympics, which is to
"inspire the youth".
How cool is it that Andrew has now competed in one Olympics as a Laser
sailor and is now striving to medal in the next one and inspire those that
* From Jim Champ:
In Scuttlebutt 3339, Andrew Campbell is making the common mistake of
assuming every country is like his own. Here in the UK, for instance we
have thousands of active dinghy sailors aged from 8 to 80 plus at hundreds
of clubs who will never run the risk of lead poisoning.
It's worth taking a look at the ISAF International class reports and seeing
where those classes are actually sailed and in what numbers. It may
surprise a lot of people judging by the posts we see on forums about how
ISAF doesn't understand the sport. It seems it doesn't matter where you
sail: sailing everywhere else really isn't at all like the scene you are
used to, and it seems very hard to really appreciate that.
There are no new sins; the old ones just get more publicity.
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