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SCUTTLEBUTT 3388 - Thursday, July 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: Ullman Sails and West Marine.
TINY LIGHT, WHISTLE LED TO LAKE MICHIGAN RESCUE
Minutes after a 50-knot squall had raced through the flotilla of sailboats
headed for Mackinac Island late Sunday night on Lake Michigan, Robert
Arzbaecher's crew on the Sociable heard a whistle somewhere out on the open
"It sounded like it came from a different direction," Arzbaecher said. "It
heightened our sensitivity. We said, 'Let's keep our eyes open.' And then
we catch a small, faint light. A needle in the haystack. If you don't have
a light on the life jacket, we would have never seen that."
Arzbaecher spoke by phone Tuesday morning, a day after he and the crew of
his Milwaukee sailboat were hailed for saving the lives of six members of
another boat that capsized late Sunday during the annual Race to Mackinac.
Two members of the other boat died.
"We had just come out of the squall where there was no visibility. Big
rain," said Arzbaecher, who is chairman, president and CEO of Actuant
Corp., an industrial company in Menomonee Falls. "At that time, it was kind
of clear with leftover seas from the squall. Reasonably good visibility.
That light was intermittent because the seas were blocking it a lot."
But that light was a sign of life and hope. Arzbaecher, skipper of the
Sociable - which sails out of the Milwaukee Yacht Club - steered his vessel
in the direction of the light in the darkness of Lake Michigan. He didn't
know what he would find.
As they got closer, Arzbaecher and his crew saw the WingNuts, another boat
in the Chicago Yacht Club's annual race. There were five sailors on top of
the capsized vessel and another in the water. "At that time we took our
sails down and started retrieving people," Arzbaecher said from his hotel
room on Mackinac Island.
His crew got all six aboard safely in an operation Arzbaecher estimated
took 10 to 15 minutes. "They were in good shape," he said of the rescued
sailors. "I think they were scared. I don't know how to answer how they
felt. I think they were ready to be recovered. They were happy. They were
But there were two sailors missing, the survivors told him. Arzbaecher had
already contacted the U.S. Coast Guard. "Their instruction to us was to try
to look for the other two sailors. We were just kind of circling in the
area, looking for spotlights, looking and waiting for the Coast Guard to
come with a boat and a helicopter."
Arzbaecher said there were no other boats in the immediate vicinity of the
WingNuts when his boat arrived. "Everybody was a half-mile, quarter-mile
away. Probably within a half-hour, it was up to six or seven boats... maybe
15 boats," he said. -- Journal-Sentinel, read on:
OUTSIDE ASSISTANCE EXPLAINED
By Kimball Livingston, Transpac
(July 20, 2011) - With 53 starters and 5 early retirees in Transpac 2011,
Larry Malmberg's Catalina 38, Hassle, is the last of 48 boats not yet
finished. Navigator David Kraai has supplied an estimated time of arrival
of around noon Thursday. It is incumbent upon us to note that Hassle won
the tail-end charlie award in 2009, too. The awards ceremony for the 46th
Transpacific Yacht Race takes place on Friday evening in Honolulu under the
In a session Wednesday afternoon at the Waikiki Yacht Club, a regatta jury
re-opened the hearing in which Criminal Mischief had been penalized one
position - dropping Chip Megeath's RP45 from second to third in Division 2
- for contacting expert counsel ashore when the boat's rudder shaft
displayed metal shavings and a small leak. With assurances that boat and
crew were not endangered, the boat continued in the race. Criminal Mischief
was then protested and penalized under Rule 41 for receiving outside
The Criminal Mischief hearing was re-opened upon receipt of a letter from
Transpacific Yacht Club Commodore Bill Lee, clarifying that in drafting the
SI's it had not been the intent of the race committee to prohibit outside
communication on behalf of safety issues affecting boat and crew. With that
established, the protest against Criminal Mischief was dismissed, and the
boat was restored to its second-place finish in division and a corrected
time win over third-place Vincitore of approximately five hours.
The letter from Bill Lee, Commodore of the Transpacific Yacht Club,
Organizing Authority of the 2011 Transpacific Yacht Race, reads:
"Racing Rule 41 permits outside help for medical issues, but not for
enhancing performance. Because weather information is so critical to
enhancing performance, the Organizing Authority put a great deal of effort
into both the description of what weather information is legal under rule
41 and also developed a strict penalty system, should a violation occur.
The Organizing Authority failed to anticipate how this penalty system would
affect a yacht should she get outside help with regard to a purely safety
"The Organizing Authority did not intend that safety be compromised and had
it thought this through, it would have modified rule 41 so that a yacht
would not break the rule and would not be penalized if, solely for reasons
of safety and not for the purpose of enhancing her performance, she sought
help in the form of information that was not freely available to all
Race website: http://www.transpacrace.com
LUCKY: When the Swan 441 Second Chance was on approach to finish the
2,225-mile Transpacific Yacht Race, Los Angeles to Honolulu on Tuesday,
they had been at sea since July 4. Over two weeks! They were ready for the
race to be done. But before they could finish, they had to first perform a
lifesaving rescue. Read on:
ULLMAN SAILS POWER UP ANOTHER TRANSPAC FLEET
Congratulations to all the competitors who raced in the 2011 Transpac!
Ullman Sails helped power three class winners and three of the top five
overall boats. Per Peterson's Andrews 68 "Alchemy" finished 3rd in the Sled
class and 3rd overall, followed closely by Brack Duker's SC 70 "Holua"
finishing 4th in class and 4th overall. Jorge Ripstein's TP52 "Patches"
took first in Division 2 and 5th overall. Jack Taylor's SC 50 "Horizon" won
Division 5 and placed 7th overall and Tom Holthus' J/145 "Bad Pak" took top
honors in Division 4 and was 9th overall. Invest in your performance.
IT'S GOOD TO FORGET THE BAD
The 2,225 nm Transpac Race fits perfectly into how the human brain
operates. We remember the good; we forget the bad. In the Transpac, the
beginning is bad and the end is good. Onboard the SC 50 Deception,
navigator Peter Shumar describes their approach to the Honolulu finish.
Sounds pretty good:
(July 20, 2011) - It was pitch black and we couldn't see sh#t. The moon
wouldn't come up for at least another hour and a half and we were halfway
across the channel. Other than the roar of the water going by and the hum
of the boat (the boat hums at high speed, a low mournfull hum at 9 knots,
and a high pitch hum after 14) everything was deathly quiet on board. No
one else wanted to take the helm, and I was driving, and then the wave
This thing was a monster. There's no way to estimate its size, but we were
on a 50 ft boat at a 45 degree incline staring down into the trough ahead
of us. There was at least 20ft ahead of us before we hit bottom, and
another 20 behind us to the crest, this thing was swallowing us for a
We had been doing 14 knots, but the boat slowed down as the water sucked us
up the face of the wave where we wavered and paused for a brief second,
everything quiet, no roar of water, no one making a sound, just a calm,
scary quiet before gravity took over and we started plunging down into the
pitch black of the trough. Later, Jasper would recall that he thought we
were all dead. That we were going to endo the boat (flip it over, by
stuffing the bow down so deep, that it wouldn't come up)
The speedo started climbing, Michele started calling it. 14 Knots, 16.2,
18, 20.2 knots! A new boatspeed record. In the three years I've been with
the Deception program, it had never been that high, and that was boatspeed,
not speed over ground, which was usually much higher.
The bow buried into the trough and the mast loaded up, we felt the boat
flex underneath us, and then, the bow surfaced and we rocketed forward,
skipping over waves so fast that the guys on the rail had their butts
bounced off the deck from where they were sitting. At one point, with both
hands on the wheel, I was bounced into the air, both feet hovering inches
above the deck from the sudden jolt. Just amazing. I have close to 30
thousand ocean miles under my belt, and I have never experienced anything
like it. -- Full report: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/news/11/0720.txt
QUOTE / UNQUOTE
At the Transpac Race skippers' meeting in Long Beach, photographer Sharon
Green provided this directive to the fleet: "When you see the helicopter,
clean up the deck, look around, and put on your shirts."
A BIT MORE GREY THAN ANTICIPATED
With nine teams now committed and in full pursuit of the 34th America's
Cup, their abilities will be on display when the inaugural America's Cup
World Series gets underway in Cascais, Portugal, Aug. 6-14. Competing in
the AC45, the World Series schedule will provide a glimpse of what lies
ahead when the teams begin to launch their AC72s by the middle of 2012.
Among the mandates of this America's Cup is for the boats to require a
higher level of athleticism, and in turn, as Oracle Racing CEO Russell
Coutts declared, create "a competition for the Facebook generation, not the
By all accounts, the AC45 is asking more from its crew than the 12 Meter
and IAAC class combined. "The level of physical activity onboard is like
nothing the America's Cup has ever seen," remarked Artemis Racing CEO Paul
Cayard. "Recovery from these races will be paramount and the coach boat
comes alongside after the session with energy drinks and protein bars. The
crew eats 'gel' throughout the day."
But when Oracle Racing, winner of the 33rd America's Cup, announced they
would field two crews for the Cascais event, it came with surprise as to
who some of the crew would be. In Coutts parlance, the Oracle team led by
Jimmy Spithill is closer to the Facebook generation (avg. 38 years), while
Coutts' team would be less so (avg. 46 years).
Despite Coutts stating that "you won't see much grey (hair) here on the new
boats," Coutts has assembled a veteran squad with a record-breaking 15 Cup
victories, boosted to 16 when the team's youngest sailor Simeon Tienpont's
2010 win is counted. Here are the two crews...
Jimmy Spithill (AUS), 32 years, skipper
John Kostecki (USA), 47 years, tactician
Dirk de Ridder (NED), 38 years, wingsail trimmer
Joe Newton (AUS), 33 years, headsail trimmer
Piet van Nieuwenhuijzen (NED), 40 years, bowman
Russell Coutts (NZL), 49 years, skipper
Murray Jones (NZL), 53 years, tactician and wing trimmer
Simon Daubney (NZL), 52 years, headsail trimmer
Matthew Mason (NZL), 46 years, pitman
Simeon Tienpont (NED), 29 years, bowman.
When competition commences on August 6th, all racing will be live-steamed
on AmericasCup.com. Additional event details: http://tinyurl.com/AC-072011
GRAND SLAM CIRCUIT
The most prominent circuit of match racing in the U.S. will commence next
month in a four-week, four-regatta series called the U.S. GRAND SLAM Match
Race Series. This ISAF Grade 2 match racing series will kick off with the
Chicago Match Race Center's Grade 2 Invitational event.
Ten teams from five nations will compete in Chicago over August 12-14 in
equally-matched TOM 28 class keelboats at a new high-profile venue at Navy
Pier, the #1 tourist destination in the 3rd largest city in the US,
attracting 8.6 million visitors a year.
Teams competing in Chicago will include 2008 Olympic Gold Medalist Anna
Tunnicliffe (USA) and her Team Maclaren, 2008 World Match Race Tour
champion Bill Hardesty (USA), and U.S. Intercollegiate champion Taylor
Canfield (ISV), who will be returning to try and repeat his win of last
year's Grand Slam predecessor, the US Match Racing Trifecta.
Four of the teams in Chicago will be competing in the entire GRAND SLAM
Series. Here is the schedule:
* Detroit Cup, held at the Bayview YC in Detroit, MI August 18-21 in
* Knickerbocker Cup, held at the Manhasset Bay YC on Long Island near New
York City August 25-28 in Swedish Match 40's.
* Oakcliff International, held at the Oakcliff Sailing Center in Oyster
Bay, New York August 30-September 3 in Swedish Match 40's.
The overall winner of the GRAND SLAM will be given an invitation to the
prestigious Grade 1 Congressional Cup in Long Beach, CA in March 2012, and
the winners of the Detroit and Knickerbocker Cup events will be given
invitations to the Grade WC Argo Group Gold Cup, the only North American
stop on the World Match Racing Tour.
Full report: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/news/11/0720/
NEW! WEST MARINE MOBILE WEBSITE
We've gone mobile! Use your iPhone, Android or BlackBerry-based smartphones
and visit www.westmarine.com to check out our new mobile website. The new
mobile optimized navigation makes it easier to find products and make a
purchase from your smartphone. In addition, you can sign in using your
westmarine.com account and access your order history, view and redeem your
West Advantage Rewards certificates, use Ship-to-Store checkout, and find
your local West Marine store location. If you're reading this on your
smartphone now, simply click/tap this link to start browsing the mobile
site now: http://www.westmarine.com
* Corona del Mar, CA (July 20, 2011) - Six flights were completed on day
one of Balboa Yacht Club's 45th annual Governor's Cup International Junior
Match Racing Championship. There were no runaways yet among the fleet of 12
teams representing six countries, with five teams leading at 4-2 and four
teams a click behind at 3-3. Among the lead group representing Scuttlebutt
Sailing Club is Judge Ryan, Kevin Laube, and Caitlin Beavers. Racing
continues to July 24. -- Standings:
* Shoreacres, TX (July 19, 2011) - The 2011 US Optimist Team Race
Championship at Houston Yacht Club (July 17-19) came to a close with
Lauderdale Yacht Club's 'Team 1' winning the 27 team event. Winning team
members Wade Waddell, Sophia Reineke, Martina Sly and twins Allie & Liza
Toppa not only overcame the competition, but also themselves. During race
delays, two members of the team suffered shoreside injuries. Liza had to
miss the final day after breaking her arm, while Sophia suffered a sprained
ankle which limited her ability to hike. The team qualified to represent
the U.S. at the European Team Race Championships in Germany in October. --
* Cagliari, Italy (July 20, 2011) - The third event of the five stop TP52
Audi MedCup Circuit began today in a blustery, offshore Mistral breeze that
saw gusts to over 25 knots at times. Udo Schuetz's German flagged team on
Container made the best start to the Region of Sardinia Trophy Regatta,
rolling a 1-2 to lead the overall standings by two points. Their dominance
was mirrored by the struggles of circuit leader Quantum Racing, whose 6-6
finds them last among the seven teams. -- Full report:
* Buzios, Brazil (July 20, 2011) - The International Lightning Class
Association South American and International Master Championships kicked
off today with two races completed. Winds ranging from 14-16 the first race
and picking up to 19-21 during the second race greeted the. 26 boats
representing 7 countries. Tito Gonzalez sailing with his son Diego Gonzalez
Parro and Cristian Herman Sanhueza of Chile leads the South American
Championship while Brazilian Claudio Biekarck, Gunner Ficker and Marcelo
Batista da Silva lead the International Masters Championship. -- Full
* US SAILING and the Olympic Sailing Committee (OSC) have announced the 16
athletes selected to represent the U.S. in the ten sailing events at the
2011 Weymouth and Portland International Regatta, the London 2012 Olympic
Test Event. Held at the Portland National Sailing Academy, in Weymouth,
U.K., the venue for the 2012 Olympic Games, the regatta is designed to
replicate the Games atmosphere and will host 460 sailors representing 66
nations. -- Full report: http://tinyurl.com/USSTAG-072011
* Fraser Yachts has been appointed as one of the operational partners for
the 34th America's Cup superyacht program. As operational partner, Fraser
Yachts will connect superyacht owners and charterers to opportunities with
the America's Cup World Series and the 34th America's Cup held in San
Francisco in 2013. Superyachts and other boats will serve as virtual
boundaries for the race course, helping to create a floating stadium in
which the teams will compete. -- Full report:
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
Jul 21-23 - San Juan 21 Western Nationals - Coos Bay, OR, USA
Jul 21-24 - U.S. Singlehanded Championship - Portland, OR, USA
Jul 23 - Bayview Port Huron to Mackinac Island Race - Port Huron, MI, USA
Jul 23-24 - Youngstown Y.C. Level Regatta - Youngstown, NY, 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
* KKMI Hires Dennis Huette as Safety, Health and Environment Manager
* International Marine: 2011-2012 Nautical Catalog
* Reichel/Pugh designed Alia 65 Harbour Racer
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 Glenn Selvin:
I was elated at the good news of Cathy Caton's rescue (as reported in
Scuttlebutt 3387), though indeed, we've never met.
I sail a Finn out of Long Beach, Ca., a venue known for its strong summer
sea breeze. At 54 years old, fat, and out of shape, I've always promised my
wife that I wouldn't go Finn sailing alone if our Tuesday night group
doesn't make it out, though I admit I've cheated once or twice when the
wind was light and the evening was too gorgeous to just go home.
This week I stood looking out over the ocean with dismay while looking at
the solid white caps. I debated going out, but though disappointed, I did
Upon returning to my car and my phone, there was Scuttlebutt, with Cathy
Caton's story. She had a buddy to note she was missing. I shudder to think
of myself, capsized or hit in the head by my Finn boom, injured, out by
myself. The ocean is so large, and my mighty Finn is so small.
Thank you, Ms. Caton.
* From David Barrow:
Most sailors want a level playing field, so as far as coaches and support
boats are concerned, should not everyone be able to have or afford to have
one on the race course - or no one?
* From Sally Burnett, Optimist Class Secretary:
Five of the six gold medallist skippers at the recent ISAF World Youth
Championships had previously sailed at Optimist World Championships.
Remarkably two of them, Carlos Roble (ESP) in the 29er and Martin Lowy
(BRA) in the SL16 only left the Optimist class seven months ago, having
participated in the Optimist Worlds at the end of 2010.
Historically it is quite rare to win gold at the ISAF event in the first
year of participation. The other three winners this year, Lara Vadlau (AUT)
and Jordi Xammar (ESP) in the 420s and Maxime Mazard (FRA) in the Laser had
taken the more usual 3-4 years to progress from the under-16 Optimist event
to winning the under-19 ISAF championship. Lara's crew Tanja Frank was in
fact her team-mate from the 2008 Austrian team.
In total at least 16 of the 18 medallist skippers were former Optimist
sailors, 10 of them having participated in IODA Worlds. Sailing is a sport
for life and the Optimist prepares young sailors be it single handed,
double-handed or multi hull.
Before you give someone a piece of your mind, make sure you can get by on
SPONSORS THIS WEEK
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