SCUTTLEBUTT 3414 - Friday, August 26, 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 New England Ropes.
Regardless of boat type, the needs for their events are quite similar. But
while our sport has focused on providing superior race course management
and rules administration, we have yet to provide a similar commitment to
online communication. Just as in every other aspect of modern life, the
online expectations for sailing events have increased to now be a vital
component for an event's success.
Every aspect of event organization varies based on the size and
significance. The needs of small club races are much different from
national class championships and prominent keelboat events. Determining the
scope of the online communication is based on the size of the event, or
specifically, who the audience is.
For smaller events, the audience is the event participants. Online
communication provides advance event details to help participants plan (ie,
NOR, SI's, etc.), organizers to manage the information on participants, and
then to post results after each day of racing. For more prominent events,
the audience is significantly larger than those participating, so
additional information is also needed to cater to their desires (ie, daily
schedule, live updates, photos, videos, daily recap reports, etc.).
Regardless of the information provided, each event needs a single 'place'
on the internet which will be THE place for all information. The audience
should need only go to one website address, which then has easy navigation
to seek out the available information. This not only provides for a simple
system, but it also insures that the website will capture all online
traffic. And any information distributed by email MUST also be posted
online at the event website.
Capturing all the online traffic is essential when events have sponsors.
Each page on the event website needs to be framed with sponsor banners and
preferably equipped with hotlinks to the sponsor's choice of site address.
If a viewer is looking at hotel listings, social schedule, SI's, or
results, they need to also be viewing the sponsor banners. While it is good
for an event to receive some exposure on outside media websites, if online
traffic is not ultimately being steered to the event website, then the
event and its supporters are not fully benefiting from the power of the
For larger events, the mission of the event website is most evident once
the racing begins. The audience is now largely non-participants, and to
them the underlying message should be . come next year. For one design
events, the audience might also include non-class members. To them the
message should also be. join our class. The people charged with online
communication must realize the purpose of the event website, and the
commitment needed. For larger events, this commitment is most crucial
during race days.
Our sport has grown to expect more event information online, and that
information to be promptly provided. For even the smallest event,
preliminary results (with a time stamp) should be posted online at the same
time they are posted at the venue message board. For events that provide
daily reports, these should not be far behind. The promptness of event
information reflects directly on the host club, one design class (if
applicable), and event supporters. -- Read on:
MORE: Scuttlebutt has developed an event communication portal that includes
additional tips along with email lists to be used for media distribution.
Find it here: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/pr/
While Peter Isler may make his income as a professional sailor, he remains
in touch with the grass roots level of the sport. Here he comments on youth
sailing, favorite products, and keeping it fun:
Q: What does sailing need to do to continue to grow as a sport from Jr.
Sailing to the America's Cup?
A: Well, I think one thing is not to think of that particular path. 99.999%
of the kids that learn to sail in yacht club and other community programs
will not have any interest in racing in the big leagues or the America's
Cup. But that doesn't mean they won't or can't continue to enjoy for a long
Sailing is a sport that you can do for all your life and you can change the
boats, and places where you sail. Racing vs cruising, etc. The main thing I
think to keep in mind is that it's a lifestyle sport that has a great
strength in that different generations can sail together.
That's where I'd like to see more focus in the youth level - classes and
activities where the juniors, the college sailors, the young adults and the
parents - all participate (sometimes) together. The social side of sailing
is its strength. but it is not flaunted enough across generations. When I
was a kid - we sailed the Lightning class as our junior boat. and on the
weekends - we'd go out and race against and with the adults in open
Lightning races. that was healthy for the sport and good for me as I
learned more and more.
Q: What is your favorite boating product?
A: Duct tape!
Q: Any advice for up and coming racers?
A: Keep it fun. I still remember my guru - Paul Elvstom's words he wrote in
one of his books (that I poured over as a teen) . that was . 'Always have
fun with your racing' It's got to be fun. when it's not - you are off track
and it's time to take a look and see what you can do to get the fun back in
your racing! For junior sailors my advice is - focus on your school work -
so you can go to a college where there is a good sailing program!
SOURCE: Michelle Overbeck and Laura Barry-Grillon, West Marine
FOLLOW THE MEDCUP ACTION WITH QUANTUM RACING
Quantum Racing is in Cartegena this week, competing in the fourth event of
the Audi MedCup Circuit. With its overall lead whittled down to seven
points during the last regatta, the TP52 team is looking to bounce back to
a podium finish and rebuild its cushion. With very tight racing and
spectacular sea conditions in Cartegena, anything can happen. QTV is on
location throughout the series to capture all the action with stunning
video, insightful interviews and a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes
to put together a competitive program. Follow Quantum Racing on its
Facebook page for the latest developments and hi-powered racing video:
The world's first ever sail-in cinema capped eight days of success at
Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week for Isle of Wight based Big Screen
Media, specialists in large format LED and digital display solutions.
Big Screen Media erected a massive 80 square metre LED screen on Cowes
Esplanade facing out to sea for the inaugural 'open water' cinema
experience on the Friday night of Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week
Hundreds of boats dropped anchor to enjoy a showing of Master and
Commander: The Far Side of the World, voted for in a poll organised by
Cowes Week Limited and sponsor Talisker; films not making the cut were Jaws
and The Perfect Storm. Ingeniously, the audio for the film was transmitted
via Cowes Radio, and small Talisker radios were also distributed amongst
the movie watchers on the water.
Dropping hook to be part of the world's first and very novel sail-in cinema
were all types of craft from small RIBs to cruisers and luxury yachts.
While the audience sat back and relaxed aboard, Big Screen Media, who had
been responsible for the complex construction of the huge LED screen, had
good reason to be pleased with the results.
The 80 square metre screen weighing in at 4.5 tons was a technically
challenging project, requiring 90 modular panels, lots of structural
support and the services of a structural engineer, while restricted access
to the site and narrow roads did not make the job an easy task. -- Read on:
BACKGROUND: Cowes Week is one of the longest running events in UK sporting
history having first taken place in 1826. The event lasts for eight days
and takes place each August, attracting about 1,000 boats ranging split
into up to 40 classes for the eight day event. --
EAST COAST PREPARES FOR HISTORIC HURRICANE IRENE
(August 25, 2011) - Wide, powerful, and slow-moving, Hurricane Irene is
expected to crash ashore in North Carolina on Saturday with winds of 115
miles per hour, and millions of people along the Eastern Seaboard are
bracing for what could be a historic storm.
If Irene stays on course straight up the East Coast, it would be the first
hurricane to hit New York City directly since 1903 and could force the
evacuation of 250,000 residents there.
Irene's tropical-force winds extend almost twice as far as normal and are
about the same size as Katrina, which devastated New Orleans in 2005. Craig
Fugate, head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said Irene will
cut a wide swath of winds and flooding as a result. "This will not just be
a coastal storm," he said.
New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina
declared states of emergency. Irene will be the Northeast's second rare
natural event in a week, after the Virginia earthquake that struck Tuesday.
The last Category 2 hurricane to hit the region was Hurricane Gloria in
1985. A Category 3 hurricane hasn't been through since the 1938 "Long
Island Express'' that killed 700 people in New York and New England, the
latter of which hasn't had a hurricane since Bob in 1991. -- USA Today,
full story: http://www.usatoday.com
National Hurricane Center:
* There were no immediate reports on Thursday of deaths in the Bahamas from
the Category 3 hurricane, but some small settlements reported up to 90 per
cent of their homes damaged while assessments from other islands were not
in because telephone lines were down. Authorities and residents were
clearly pleased that Irene had shifted course and largely skirted populous
New Providence island, which is home to more than 200,000 people and some
of the most famous resorts in the Bahamas. Irene left a mess of scattered
debris, toppled trees and minor flooding but no major damage. -- CBC News,
full story: http://tinyurl.com/CBC-082511
* The racing committee of the Ninth Annual Newport Bucket Regatta has
decided to call off racing amidst the threat of Hurricane Irene as she
travels towards the US. At present, Irene is a Category 3 storm, with
forecasters predicting that will rise to a far more dangerous Category 4 as
she passes the Bahamas. With entries ranging from 47m Royal Huisman yacht
Hyperion to 22m Alden sloop Fearless, organisers were keen to ensure the
safety of the yachts and their crew as the hurricane advances forward. --
Yachting World, read on: http://tinyurl.com/Yachting-World-082511
COMMERCIALIZING THE CUP
It was quite a big risk for Cascais to host the first America's Cup World
Series. While the hotel room nights would have been up thanks to an army of
TV production personnel, the TV shots couldn't seem to find many shots of
fans who had made the trip to watch.
While we wait for the economic impact figures for Portugal, attention
shifts to the small, but historically significant sailing town of Plymouth
in the UK (for the second event on Sept. 10-18).
There is no doubt that Plymouth can stage great sailing events - both for
participants and spectators. The start of the Artemis Transat in 2008
received wide acclaim and hundreds of boats are beginning to arrive back at
the historic Barbican area as they finish the 2011 Rolex Fastnet Race.
On the face of it, Plymouth provides a better viewing experience for the
land-based spectator than Cascais does. Plymouth is a card carrying member
of the 'natural amphitheater PR club', with high cliffs that look out over
an enclosed race-area, but the America's Cup World Series might not have
enough local interest to encourage fans along the coast or in London to
make the trip.
Plymouth officials admit that if Ben Ainslie had been on the helm of an
AC45 flying a British flag, the crowds would be bigger. They can't say how
much bigger, but without a home-team, the event is (as one local put it) -
"Just a bunch of black boats". Perhaps Spanish America's Cup fans will get
the ferry from Santander to watch Green Comm Racing.
Organisers haven't just hyped the event to spectators, it's pushing a
totally unrealistic expectation to local businesses. One piece of
literature sent to local businesses says... read on:
STATISTICS: The counters in Caiscais state that 150,000 people attended the
inaugural ACWS event, which contributed to an estimated economic impact of
$5 million dollars.
BIGGER: The first taste of America's Cup activity in the United States will
be on November 12-20 when San Diego hosts the third stop. And the economic
impact for this third event is estimated to be 20 million dollars. --
VINTAGE LINES COMING SOON TO NEW ENGLAND ROPES
New England Ropes is introducing two new lines that are the perfect
compliment for traditional vessels: Vintage 3-strand and Vintage Sta-Set.
These lines offer low-stretch, extreme durability, and high strength.
They're natural in color and come in a variety of sizes to meet your needs.
So give your boat a traditional look and feel with our new line of
traditional rigging products including Vintage 3-Strand, Vintage Sta-Set,
and Endura Classic! Visit our website at http://www.neropes.com for more
information and see them for yourself at both the Newport and Annapolis
* (August 25, 2011) - A perfect lead-up to the upcoming Nation's Cup
finals, this year's Buddy Melges Challenge women's match racing event is
currently being sailed off the Lake Michigan shore near Sheboygan, WI.
After three days of racing the Stage One Round Robin series is now complete
and the quarterfinals have begun. Quarterfinal racing began Thursday with
two races completed before the end of the day. Anna Tunnicliffe (USA) holds
a 2-0 lead over Ru Wang (CHN) while Genny Tulloch (USA) and Anne-Claire Le
Berre (FRA) are tied at 1-1. -- Full report:
* The Moore 24 class has organized an online auction to help the family of
Joel Verutti, a 28-year boat owner and fleet ambassador who died earlier
this year to brain cancer. Sailing excursions to New Zealand and Puget
Sound, golf and fishing trips in the Columbia River Gorge, and professional
sailors like Morgan Larson or Trevor Bayliss are all among the auction
items. The auction will close in November. Details here:
* Cartagena, Spain (August 25, 2011) - From a second day of light winds
racing at the TP52 Audi MedCup Circuit, the Spanish TP52 Bribon emerged
with a slender overall lead at the Region of Murcia-Cartagena Trophy
regatta after they held their nerve to win the second race of the day. Led
by double Olympic medal winning tactician Ross MacDonald (CAN), the gentle
sea breeze was slightly stronger than for the first racing day, but it
still never made more than 10kts. -- Full report:
PHOTOS OF THE WEEK
Some of the random photos from the sport received this week at Scuttlebutt
include goofy hats, old school, stamp, both ends, new tool, youth and
keelboats, champion dog, and rebel kids. Here are this week's photos:
BONUS: The highly professional RC44 class made a swing through Florida and
California this past winter, and rumors are they may do it again this year.
Their tour saw 16 boats at their recent stop in Sweden, where elite
shooters Oskar Kihlborg and Rick Tomlinson share some of the action:
SEND US YOUR PHOTOS: If you have images to share for the Photos of the
Week, send them to the Scuttlebutt editor:
VIDEO OF THE WEEK
The highlight event of the Scow season is the Inland Lake Yachting
Association Championship Regatta, which this year was held August 11-21 on
Lake Minnetonka in Deephaven, MN. This year's event saw 26 A Scows, 58 E
Scows, 54 C Scows, and 50 MC Scows. Out of all the sailors in these fleets,
30% were 25 or younger.
They say that it's in the interior of the U.S. where Scow sailing is most
prevalent, and that some suspect in-breeding is how they promote fleet
growth. "Maybe it is wrong to be proud of having this connation," explains
2010 champion Sam Rogers, "but when it comes to racing scows in the ILYA,
it truly is a big family and the annual Big Inland is our reunion, the only
difference from a normal family is we have 500 crazy uncles instead of a
Chris Love was there to document the E Scow events, with daily race
highlights and interviews exposing the secrets of Scow country... enjoy:
BONUS: Not quite sure that the world will end in 2012 - but this is a
really creative regatta promo for the 2011 J/24 World Championship in
BONUS: Ever watched yourself in a home video? How about filming your child
at a sporting event? Pretty standard stuff. Now let's up the ante. Have you
ever watched an animated 3-D replay of a race you were in, with the entire
fleet of boats represented, the course detailed, laylines marked, distance
measured, etc? I didn't think so. This video presents features of the
GeoRacing product: a complete solution for relevant real-time (and replay)
visualization of outdoor sport competitions:
BONUS: The weekly 'America's Cup Uncovered' magazine show on the America's
Cup YouTube channel provides behind-the-scenes sneak-peeks, athlete
profiles and up-close action on and off the water. Shows are released by
SEND US YOUR VIDEOS: If you have clips to share for the Video of the Week,
send them to the Scuttlebutt editor: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Remember: you can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. Of course,
how you spend your leisure time is your business.
SPONSORS THIS WEEK
Point Loma Outfitting - New England Ropes - Hall Spars & Rigging
North Sails - J Boats - Atlantis WeatherGear - Morris Yachts - Ocean Racing
Ullman Sails - APS - Premiere Racing - Quantum Sails - Sailors for the Sea
Need stuff? Look here: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/ssc/suppliers