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SCUTTLEBUTT 3431 - Wednesday, September 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: The Pirates Lair, BIC Sport, and Lewmar.
WHEN FICTION AND FACT MEET
It was 1994 when American Carol Cronin started writing the book 'Game of
Sails', a story of the Olympic sailing world - liberally spiced with
romance, intrigue, and suspense! But somewhere along the way Carol took a
break from the project to pursue her own Olympic sailing path, which led
her to represent the U.S at the 2004 Olympic Games. This past fall, Carol
returned to her fictional tale of elite racing, which is now complete and
available as an ebook. Here is an excerpt:
The loud but harmless warning gun blew an acrid whiff of smoke across my
boat. Five minutes to the start of race two - and I was planning to win
this next one as well.
I felt like I'd been spun through a salt water rinse cycle. Water dripped
off my waterproof top and neoprene shorts, and my arms and legs ached. But
today's thumping southerly breeze rewarded my height and strength. So if I
was a little tired, the thirty-four girls I'd beaten in the first race must
This was the best place - the only place - to be, and even the thick
buildup of salt on my cheeks couldn't keep me from smiling. Perched on my
fourteen foot Solo in the middle of Miami's Biscayne Bay, surrounded by the
best Olympic sailors in the world - and ready to show them all over again
who was boss.
"Your kind of day, Casey," Rachel had told me this morning as we rigged our
boats, palm trees already thrashing overhead. "You'll make the team this
year - easy."
Four days and nine races from now, the top three boats - along with the top
three from the men's fleet - would qualify for the national team, which
meant enough funding to train full time for the Olympic Trials. That
regatta would be in Newport, Rhode Island, where Rachel and I had spent
summers since we were five years old. But only one of us (or, God forbid,
someone far less deserving) would go to the Olympics.
"Jenny Garcia's the only other girl who's been practicing at all," Rachel
had told me yesterday. "And she doesn't have even half of your drive."
I shook my head to clear it, chafing my thick braid against the back of my
lifejacket. Time to focus on winning this race.
Additional information about the book and purchase options:
WHEN PREPARATION AND LUCK MEET
When Hurricane Irene rolled up the eastern shores of the U.S., its wrath
affected nearly everyone in its path. There were countless stories... here
is one of from Newport, RI:
Hurricane Irene's visit to the Herreshoff Marine Museum was a painful
experience in many ways. Our Classic Regatta, the museum's second most
important fund raising event of the year, was scheduled for Saturday and
Sunday, August 27th and 28th. On Wednesday morning, while the storm was
still over the Bahamas, the weather forecasts were unanimous in predicting
that Irene would come ashore in our area, perhaps still at category 2
strength, right at high tide on Sunday evening, coinciding with a moon
Storm surge was predicted to be as high as 12 feet, which would put the
water at or over Hope Street. The Executive Committee reluctantly made the
only prudent decision possible: the regatta had to be cancelled. Notice of
the cancellation was immediately posted on our web site, and the office
staff began calling all the expected participants to notify them. We
successfully reached most entrants, although unfortunately some who were
coming from as far away as Alaska and Europe did not learn of the
cancellation before they departed for Rhode Island.
Immediately after the departure on Friday morning of the American Yacht
Club's fleet, which visited the museum as a part of its annual cruise, we
began dismantling the waterfront. The tent came down. The floating docks
were disassembled and the heavier ones towed to moorings and attached by
special bridles that had been prepared long ago for just such an emergency.
The lighter docks were pulled from the water and carried across Hope Street
to places well above the predicted high water. For the first time ever the
entire deck of the main pier was removed to protect it from the storm
The smaller boats were hauled and stored indoors. We had hoped to have
KESTREL and LADY LUCK hauled, but could not get a commitment that they
would come out of the water before the arrival of the storm. They were
stripped of all sails and anything else that would increase windage and
moved to heavier moorings where triple sets of bridles were attached in
case the first ones failed. Contents of the dock house and anything else
that was movable were transferred to safer places. -- Read on:
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CASH + COMPETITION = CHICAGO MATCH CUP
Chicago, IL (September 20, 2011) - After a triumphant trial event last
month at Chicago Match Race Center's Grade 2 Invitational, which drew
crowds of 30,000 over three days of racing, Stadium sailing returns to Navy
Pier for the ISAF Grade 1 Chicago Match Cup. For this event, held over
September 28th - October 1st, 12 teams from 7 nations will be fighting for
their share of the $65,000 prize money purse, the largest offered in any
sailing event in the US since 2002.
The lure of cold hard cash has brought the most talented field yet to
square off against each other at Navy Pier in CMRC's eight equally-matched
TOM 28 class boats. Among this field are numerous past, present and future
Olympic, National and World Champions, as well as current players on the
World Match Racing Tour, whose Argo Group Gold Cup starts the following
week in Bermuda, with four teams warming up in Chicago.
But besides the prize money, skippers are also keen to earn valuable Grade
1 points to advance their places on the world ranking list, which has five
teams from the top 20 entered in this event:
- Pierre-Antoine Morvan from France (5th), Phil Robertson from New Zealand
(10th), Reuben Corbett from New Zealand (15th), Alvaro Marinho from
Portugal (18th), Keith Swinton from Australia (20th).
- Rounding out the field is Taylor Canfield from the US Virgin Islands
(32nd), Dave Perry from the US (39th), Don Wilson from the US (44th), CMRC
Grade 2 Invitational winner Bill Hardesty from the US (67th).
- Two aspiring Women's match race Olympians from the US are also in this
field, Sally Barkow and Genny Tulloch.
Read on: http://chicagocup.org/news/article.asp?n=1075
Wind strength myth: In colder weather 20 knots of wind is stronger than 20
knots of wind in warmer weather. True or false? Answer below.
* Yachting photographers follow the sizzle, and the America's Cup has
always been a steady source of bacon. From the latest America's Cup World
Series event in Plymouth, Scuttlebutt has posted imagery from Guilain
Grenier, Chris Cameron, Christophe Favreau, Sander van der Borch, and Rick
* For those of you seeking the 'crash and burn' highlights from America's
Cup World Series event in Plymouth, photographer Sander van der Borch had
his finger on the trigger when both Artemis Racing and Team Korea stuck
their bows in and went down the mine. Enjoy:
* The Express 27 is a child of the eighties, born during the 'fast is fun'
era of boatbuilding in Santa Cruz, CA. This ultra-light displacement sloop
from the design table of Carl Schumacher thrives in the breeze, so having
its U.S. Nationals in San Francisco seems about right. Photos from Leslie
* Leave it to Carlo Borlenghi to be in phase. While the army of sailing
media is chasing the latest and greatest, Carlo is in the French Rivera for
Monaco Classic Week. And we wish we were with him. Here is his photo
ARE YOU IN THE MARINE INDUSTRY?
The Marine Industry News category of the Scuttlebutt Forum provides
companies with guaranteed online exposure of their personnel, product and
service updates. Plus each week the Scuttlebutt newsletter selects a
sampling of updates to feature in the Thursday edition. Are you in the
marine industry? Post your updates here:
* Palma de Mallorca, Spain (September 20, 2011) - The opening day of the
2011 Melges 32 World Championship, hosted by Real Club Nautico de Palma
(RCNP), was remarkable. Brilliant sunny skies, 10-12 knots of breeze and
lumpy seas set the stage on Palma Bay. After two races, American John
Kilroy's Samba Pa Ti with tactician Vasco Vascotto (ITA) holds the lead by
one point, ahead of Italian Vincenzo Onorato's Mascalzone Latino and
tactician Francesco Bruni (ITA) in second overall. Seated in third is
American Alexis Michas on Zetiana with Brian Ledbetter (USA) onboard
calling tactics. -- Read on: http://www.melges32.com/?p=news&id=818
* The World Sailing Speed Record Council has ratified two new world records
that occurred during the 2011 Fastnet Race (Aug 14-15). Ian Walker (GBR)
and his crew on the Volvo 70 "Abu Dhabi" set a new monohull record when
they completed the 595 nm route in 1 day, 18 hours, and 38 minutes (14 kt
avg). Additionally, Loick Peyron (FRA) and his crew on the 131-foot
trimaran "Banque Populaire 5" set a new outright record for the course of 1
day, 8 hours, 48 minutes, and 46 seconds (18.1 kt avg). -- Full report:
* Alicante, Spain (September 20, 2011) - Team Telefónica today became the
first Volvo Ocean Race crew to make their formal arrival into Alicante
ahead of the 2011-12 race start on October 29. The cut-off date for all six
entered teams to arrive is October 3. The Race Village in Alicante opens to
the public on October 14 with the Alicante In-Port Race kicking off on
October 29. The first of the nine ocean legs, from Alicante through the
Atlantic to Cape Town in South Africa, starts on November 5. -- Full
* Skipper Bruce Kuryla (Milford, Conn.) of the New York Yacht Club has high
hopes of defending his U.S. Offshore Championship against six teams on
September 23-25. This US SAILING National Championship event will be raced
on Chesapeake Bay in Navy 44 sloops and hosted by the U.S. Naval Academy
Sailing Squadron in Annapolis, Md. Each team consists of a crew of nine,
including one skipper and seven crew members, plus one U.S. Naval Academy
Midshipman provided from the varsity offshore racing team. -- Full report:
DO YOUR KIDS USE TYPEWRITERS OR KEYBOARDS?
The O'Pen BIC and Techno 293 Classes enjoyed a very successful summer of
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But competition isn't the primary reason why more and more Junior Sailing
Programs are adding these classes. The kids LOVE them and are excited for
sailing. The O'Pen BICs and Techno 293s are modern, less expensive,
amazingly durable, and completely self-bailing. Capsizing becomes fun.
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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 Todd M. Hiller:
With the qualifying limit lifted for the Rochester J/24 Worlds next year,
we would be remiss not to mention Wayne Bretsch as an integral part of the
success PRO Hank Stuart had running the 103 boats at the 2008 J/22 Worlds.
Since the two joined forces, I have to say that they have both provided
exceptional racing for competitors, in multiple classes. Their knack for
communicating to the fleet has revolutionized conduct on the water with
knowing what the heck is going on. It's nothing just shy of frustrating
when RC's have been tight lipped of their intentions. Hank and Wayne
complement each other in their abilities and it's no wonder that the two
have been highly recommended to run top level, high quality championship
For the J/24 class, not to worry, the decision not to split the fleet will
indeed make for some very exciting starts and you'll be in good hands
knowing these guys are looking out for you. Be prepared for the "India
Zulu" if you all encroach their starting early in the series.
* From John Diggins:
Regarding the rules quiz in Scuttlebutt 3430, the error on the Race
Committee's part is in the coding. The correct code for the boat that hit
the finish line mark is DNF. See the definition of "finish". The points for
DNF and DSQ are the same. Woe be tide the sailor who would seek redress for
this; he will only see a change in the letters next to his name on the
* From Michael Borga, Point Pleasant, NJ:
From the rules question in Scuttlebutt 3430 it said, "Since the Race
Committee did not protest and the boat did finish, the race Committee's
only option is to score the boat where she finished."
This answer given should not, in my humble opinion, be considered correct
due to the fact that a basic principle of The Racing Rules of Sailing has
Sportsmanship And The Rules: Competitors in the sport of sailing are
governed by a body of rules that they are expected to follow and enforce. A
fundamental principle of sportsmanship is that when competitors break a
rule they will promptly take a penalty, which may be to retire.
This rule/principle should take precedence over all others, the boat that
finished while hitting the mark should not be rewarded in any way shape or
form, whether a protest is lodged or not.
* From Bruce Nelson, University of Michigan (1975):
Congratulations to the Wisconsin Hoofers Sailing Team for winning the Harry
Anderson Intersectional at Yale last weekend, which is indeed a rare and
stunning achievement for a team from the Midwest Collegiate Sailing
Wisconsin clearly has a very talented team and an outstanding on-campus
sailing venue on Lake Mendota with a wide variety of boats and great
competition - amongst the best in the country. As a past MCSA sailor (and
commodore), it is always gratifying to see the district perform well in
intersectional competition and carry forward its great tradition which, for
the record, does include some previous out-of-district intersectional
Long-serving MCSA officer George Griswold is probably the best source for
such historical records, but I do recall MCSA team victories at the Kennedy
Cup and Trux Umsted intersectional regattas at Navy (Michigan 1973 and
1975), and the ICSA Sloop Championships in California (Michigan 1972).
Also, back then the Walter Wood Team Racing Trophy was a competition
amongst districts, rather than individual school teams, and the MCSA team
won in California in 1972, and again in 1975 in Chicago… technically not an
out-of-district event but nonetheless it was an exciting win at the time.
I would be surprised if some of the other MCSA powers from that era and
before, including Notre Dame, Michigan State, Ohio Wesleyan and others, had
not won an intersectional regatta or two… nonetheless, congratulations to
Wisconsin for re-starting the tradition!
* From Wes Oliver
The Intercollegiate sailing dynamic is complex, and happens to favor the
Northeast in some ways. A point not yet highlighted is the difference
between university supported Varsity teams and unsupported club teams.
I suspect there are more varsity sailing programs in the Northeast than
anywhere else in the country. Some very good sailors, even from the
northeast, choose Midwest schools for the education value et al, but
sailing in the Midwest doesn't rank high as a varsity sport.
Average travel time is something like 6-7 hours each way for the U Michigan
team to travel to Wisco (Wisconsin-Madison) for a regatta. This weekend
they will drive 14 hours each way to race at Tufts, and in 2 weeks 11 hours
each way for the IOR at Larchmont.
The only university support they get is the ability to rent University vans
for the trip. All that and manage their studies (we hope). No coaches,
small practice site, but very dedicated sailors from Michigan, Indiana,
Connecticut and even Kansas. Kudos to those sailors outside the northeast
who compete wherever they can!
* From John Wade:
On the topic of buoy racing, windward-leeward courses can boring too,
especially if it's the same course year after year after year. I sail in
the Puget Sound, and all the clubs use the same north-South course over and
over again. Only once in a while we get a reach.
Reaching is fun and challenging. With the reaching leg a whole new aspect
of handicap racing is introduced. The reach may appear to be a parade, but
the subtleties of reaching well (or badly) can make the difference of a few
seconds or even a few minutes, i.e. the difference between winning and
There can be nothing more enjoyable than rolling a competitor that has
kicked your butt to windward, and now put you back into contention. Or,
sailing that leg to perfection and gaining those several seconds necessary
to beat your nemesis. I think those that find reaching boring are not
WIND STRENGTH MYTH
This factoid regarding wind strength and air temperature comes from Ari
Barshi of the Laser Training Center in Cabarete, Dominican Republic: "I
actually had a NASA rocket scientist help me on this one. His conclusion
was: As the air is denser in colder weather, and assuming you hold
everything else constant (i.e. sail size and sea conditions, as changes in
the roughness of the water will change the boundary layer and affect the
actual wind pressure on the sail), a change in temp of 5 degrees C will
bring about a 2% change in total wind energy. So 20 knots of wind in 25
degrees C does feel like just 19 knots in 8 degrees C. (corrected 9/22/2011)
COUNTDOWN TO ANNAPOLIS
The Lewmar and Navtec Team are busy preparing for the United States
Sailboat Show at Annapolis, where they will be showing the latest
innovations in marine equipment and rigging hydraulic technology. Come
along to Stand Land 64 to catch up with the latest news, or click on
If you consult enough experts, you can confirm any opinion.
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