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SCUTTLEBUTT 3588 - Thursday, May 10, 2012
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: US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider and Ullman Sails.
"THE MOST REWARDING RACE IN MY 40 PLUS YEARS OF SAILING"
By Chris Lanza, Coral Reef Yacht Club Fleet Captain
(May 9, 2012) - I had no plans to sail this past weekend. Stu Hebb's Thin
Ice was away in Mexico and I had my son for the weekend, so I figured that
it would be another night at the movies or sitting on the couch watching
yet another bad show.
Mid-week, I got an email from BBYRA - Biscayne Bay Yacht Racing
Association's Cindy Saunders - reminding me that there was a full moon race
Saturday night. No one had asked me to sail. Admittedly, I have been a bit
out of the loop the past month, but I thought....what the heck, maybe I
will grab some portable nav lights and take the Etchells out.
I asked my son Andrew (12 years old and not that much into sailing) if he
wanted to go. Much to my surprise, he seemed excited about the idea. I was
looking for a 3rd and my son said, "why don't we just go out ....you and
me". While this may seem like a no-brainer, (great father and son moment),
the Etchells is a pain in the @ss. A big boat to get off the trailer and
splash (with 3 people), and is usually raced by 3 big strong guys...never
mind at night, but, I figured we'd give it a shot.
We spent most of the day driving around trying to find bow lights that run
on batteries and stick to the boat with suction cups and ended up driving
to Hillsboro Blvd and US. 1 in Deerfield Beach to score that unit. We got a
late start off the dock and on the way out, the hand held GPS failed
despite brand new batteries. The kite was not rigged, I had forgotten my
watch, and it looked like there was no way were going to make the
start...read no engine in the Etchells, so maybe this was a bad idea.
I was getting grumpy and my son just said..."relax, we will make it." This
from a kid who does not race and has no idea how far the start was...not to
mention we had less than ten minutes to get there. I thought to myself,
"all that work and running around two counties to get things right...
nothing was working and we were going to be late for our start!" Andrew
hooked up the boom box to my iPhone and hit shuffle. He said, "Dad... you
want a beer...?" Silly question. Suddenly the start seemed closer, I
didn't care that I had no idea where Key Biscayne #1 buoy was and it was
going to be dark soon. We would find it. -- Read on:
TWO IN A ROW
(May 9, 2012; Day 18) - PUMA's American skipper Ken Read enjoyed a glorious
homecoming and a second consecutive leg win on Wednesday after an intense
match race with close rivals CAMPER that has thrown the overall race wide
Read's men crossed the Miami finish line at 1414 local time, 1814 UTC, with
a lead of around five nautical miles over CAMPER with Emirates Team New
Zealand, who gave them a real scare over a fraught final 24 hours and at
one point closed to within just 0.6 nm.
CAMPER crossed the finish line for second place just over an hour later, at
"This is unbelievable,'' Read said just minutes after crossing the line in
the company of about 100 spectator boats. "It's great to be back in the
United States, actually we've been to Miami before in this boat, so this
marks our complete circumnavigation.
"It was touch and go, the guys on CAMPER sailed very well, but I couldn't
be more proud of our team, they did an unbelievably great job."
It is the fourth podium finish in six legs for PUMA Ocean Racing powered by
BERG and confirms a major fightback since the team's devastating retirement
from Leg 1 with a broken mast.
The finish marks a major shift on the overall race leader board that
threatens Team Telefonica's grip on the overall lead. The Spanish team is
still on the race track tussling with Groupama sailing team for the
remaining podium finish, with an ETA of 2300 local time. Abu Dhabi Ocean
Racing is expected at about 0400 local time on Thursday. -- Full story:
Leg 6 - Itajai, Brazil to Miami, USA (4,800 nm)
Standings as of Wednesday, 09 May 2012, 22:02:36 UTC
1. PUMA Ocean Racing (USA), Ken Read (USA), May 9, 017d 01h 13m 59s
2. CAMPER (NZL), Chris Nicholson (AUS), May 9, 017d 02h 21m 24s
3. Groupama 4 (FRA), Frank Cammas (FRA), 27.4 nm Distance to Finish
4. Telefonica (ESP), Iker Martinez (ESP), 9.8 nm Distance to Lead
5. Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing (UAE), Ian Walker (GBR), 65.3 nm DTL
6. Team Sanya (CHN), Mike Sanderson (NZL), Did not start
OVERALL: If the teams finish in their current order, overall leader
Telefonica will still have an 11 point advantage. However, the spread from
Groupama (2nd) to PUMA (4th) decreases to six points.
Video reports: http://www.youtube.com/user/volvooceanracevideos
BACKGROUND: During the nine months of the Volvo Ocean Race, which started
in Alicante, Spain (Oct. 29) and concludes in Galway, Ireland during early
July 2012, six professional teams will sail over 39,000 nautical miles
around the world via Cape Town, Abu Dhabi, Sanya, Auckland, around Cape
Horn to Itajai, Miami, Lisbon, and Lorient. Teams accumulate points through
nine distance legs and ten In-Port races. - http://www.volvooceanrace.com
SPERRY TOP-SIDER NAMED TITLE SPONSOR OF US SAILING TEAM
Sperry Top-Sider, the leading global nautical performance and lifestyle
brand is the new title sponsor of the US Sailing Team, newly named US
Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider. The title sponsorship is effective
immediately and runs through December 31, 2016. All boats and main sails
on the National, Paralympic and Development teams will feature the Team's
new logo. Sperry will also continue its role as exclusive footwear sponsor
and beginning January 2013, the sponsorship will also include performance
apparel, eyewear, accessories and luggage. To learn more about the
partnership and Sperry Top-Sider visit http://www.sperrytopsider.com
PAST AND FUTURE OF SINGLEHANDED DINGHY RACING
By Paul Heineken
The StFYC Elvstrom Zellerbach Regatta in San Francisco, CA (May 5-6, 2012)
has a long and distinguished 48 year history. The Zellerbach Trophy was
dedicated to Olympic singlehanded dinghies, so engraved on it are the names
of luminary Finn and windsurfer sailors. The Elvstrom Trophy commemorates
Paul Elvstrom's first ever Laser experience which occurred at this event
long before the Laser was an Olympic Class.
This regatta has evolved to include other high-performance dinghies, so
over the last 30+ years I've competed in the E-Z in a Finn, Laser, IMCO
sailboard, and 29er. This year, relegated to race committee, I watched the
most amazing high-performance event ever.
The E-Z regatta showcased foiling Moths, Formula sailboards, and kiteboards
all racing on the City Front course. While the Lasers "shared" the same
course, they looked like nearly static obstacles. Meanwhile, Finns, 505s,
and Weta trimarans sailed on a different course west of Alcatraz Island.
Moth participants were superb sailors, former 49er aces with prior Olympic
Campaigns. Formula boardsailors included highly ranked international
competitors. Kite competitors included the top 3 in the world. That
morning's ISAF announcement that the kiteboard would replace the RSX
windsurfer in the 2016 Olympics added to the drama and tension. Who around
the world would believe that the class with the most participants at this
traditional regatta would be the KITE CLASS? It was!
Moths prefer smooth water and a breeze in the low-teens. During the flood
tide prior to the strong afternoon seabreeze, they flew like their
namesake. But they were delighted to finish their day before a stronger
breeze and ebb tide chop created crash and burn conditions.
Formula boards sailed all day, weathered moderate to high wind conditions,
and showed what a great sailing craft they are, as long as they have
sufficient power to plane.
As with all high-performance sailing craft, these fleets spread out in
distance - if not in time differential - races can appear a bit like a
parade. However, because of their speed relative to the current, they were
able use both sides of the current-affected course, upwind and down. And
because downwind they're sailing on apparent wind, puffs and shifts
profoundly affected their angles and created passing lanes.
Now to the kiteboards. Although kites didn't have a combined start with
Moths and Formula boards, when they lined up between races they were faster
- upwind and down - with better angles. Because kitesailors can optimize
their kite size, they were able to sail - fast - from marginal sailboard
planing conditions all the way up to survival ebb tide chop.
In a RIB, I followed them at 17 knots upwind and couldn't keep up downwind,
with them reaching about 30 knots. Plus they were far more maneuverable
than sailboards or Moths, with tacks being nearly instantaneous. Starts
were spectacular, with only one kite wrap caused by a few overly optimistic
port-tack-starters. -- Read on:
A FIRST FOR THE SHORTHANDED AMERICAN SAILING CIRCUIT
"There's never been a race like this before in the U.S.," reported American
Emma Creighton (27) - the third American female skipper to complete the
Mini Transat and one of only four female skippers competing in the Atlantic
Cup 2012 (May 11 to 27; atlanticcup.org). "This is a first for the
shorthanded American sailing circuit - there will be 15 boats on the line,
with teams from both the U.S. and Europe competing."
The three-stage Atlantic Cup will test sailors in both offshore and
around-the-buoy environments, with a healthy emphasis cast on the two
offshore legs. The first offshore leg will take the fleet of Class 40
raceboats from Charleston, South Carolina to New York City, New York, a
distance of 645-nautical miles; Leg Two is a 260-nautical-mile "sprint"
from the Big Apple to Newport, Rhode Island.
And while the Atlantic Cup borrows heavily from the European model of
professional regattas (e.g., a race village and strong multimedia
presence), American flourishes such carbon-neutral status and
U.S.-corporate sponsorship provide the race with a unique heritage.
"I'm really looking forward to sailing with my co-skipper, Rob Windsor,"
said Creighton. "He has a ton of Class 40 experience, so I'll learn a lot.
Plus, we're one of only five all-American boats, which is pretty cool given
that this is a U.S. race." Creighton and Windsor will compete aboard
Initiatives (GBR 30), owned by Tanguy de Lamotte's (FRA), a deal that
Creighton brokered in exchange for some substantial delivery work for her
Originally, Creighton planned to race with co-skipper Jorge Madden (ESP),
but a seven-day delivery from Progreso, on Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, to
Charleston, South Carolina, revealed some personality quirks. "Doublehanded
racing requires matching-up on a vast array of compatibility points," said
Creighton. "Jorge and I have both moved on to new co-skippers for this
race, but we remain great friends. I wish him the best of luck."
Like the sailors themselves, the offshore legs also have their own
idiosyncrasies. For starters, Leg One is significantly longer than Leg Two
and involves negotiating two potential question marks - Cape Hatteras and
the Gulf Stream - as well as the initial hurdle of clearing Charleston
Harbor and the final challenge of negotiating New York Harbor. "We're
starting at 1800 hours, right off of the Charleston Maritime Center, in
order to catch the ebb tide out of town," said Creighton. "Unfortunately,
the sea breeze usually dies each evening, and the rivers that drain into
Charleston Harbor create some weird lateral currents. It will be a tricky
start!"-- Read on: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/news/12/0509a/
BACKGROUND: The Atlantic Cup presented by 11th Hour Racing is the United
States' premier Class40 sailing race. The 2012 race will kick off in
Charleston, South Carolina May 11th. From Charleston competitors will race
double-handed to New York City. There will be approximately a 4-5 day
stop-over in New York before the race restarts and competitors sprint to
Newport, Rhode Island. Once in Newport, skippers will race an inshore grand
prix with a crew of six. -- http://atlanticcup.org/race/
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
* CTM, Germany offers CAD Kitting for the Marine Industry
* RORC Rating Office - Introduction
* CharterSavvy - online magazine devoted exclusively to bareboat chartering
View updates here: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/forum/industry_news
* Zadar, Croatia (May 9, 2012) - Although the forecast of 12-15 knots
didn't quite materialize, the third day of racing at the 49er World
Championship closed with five more teams now having qualified their
countries for the 2012 Olympics in Weymouth this August. At the end of the
qualifying series today, the following countries have punched their ticket
to Weymouth; Bermuda, Japan, Canada, Greece, and Italy. -- Full report:
* Boltenhagen, Germany (May 9, 2012) - With qualifying now completed, the
finals of the Audi Laser World Championship 2012 began today in more stable
winds, sunny conditions, and zero black flag disqualifications. Tom
Slingsby (AUS) had mixed results, scoring a first and a twenty-third place.
However with his second discard he adds only one point to his overall
score, bringing it up to 19 and leaving him steady in the top position.
Croatian Tonci Stipanovic improved again and is now in second position
behind Slingsby. -- Full report: http://tinyurl.com/Laser-050912
* (May 9, 2012) - The San Diego County coroner has identified a body found
by Southern California fishermen on Sunday as that of Theo Mavromatis, the
skipper of the doomed Hunter 376 Aegean. Mavromatis (49) and crew Kevin
Rudolph (53), William Johnson (57), and Joseph Stewart (64) were racing in
the cruising division of the Lexus Newport to Ensenada Race on April 28
when their SPOT tracker suddenly stopped transmitting in the early morning
hours. Wreckage from the boat was discovered the next afternoon, along with
the bodies of three of her crewmembers. -- Latitude 38, read on:
* New York (May 9, 2012) - This morning at 3:20 a.m. local time, in front
of the Ambrose lighthouse in New York Harbor, the 70-foot Maserati racing
yacht crossed the starting line and set off to conquer the New York-Cape
Lizard (UK) record under a cloudy sky and looming thunderstorms. The
international crew of eight men will sail 2,925 miles in the North Atlantic
Ocean, seeking to better 6 days, 17 hours, 52 minutes and 39 seconds, a
world record set in 2003 by British sailor Robert Miller's 140-foot
monohull Mari Cha IV. -- Read on: http://tinyurl.com/OR-050912
HOISTING TROPHIES IN SAN DIEGO
Ullman Sails customers not only swept several class wins last weekend at
San Diego YC's Yachting Cup, but scored the overall trophies as well!
Congratulations to John Laun and J/120 "Caper" team who hoisted the
Yachting Cup as the regatta overall winner and scored first in class. Per
Petersen's Andrews 68 "Alchemy" won the Ton Cup for winning Friday's match
race combined with their weekend daily rankings. Alchemy finished 2nd
overall in PHRF 1. Andy Rasdal's Melges 24 "Valkryie" won PHRF 4 with
straight bullets, and J/105 "Wings" took first in class with seven points
ahead of second place. http://www.ullmansails.com
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 Scott Kaufman:
Rob Nye lays out the obvious (in Scuttlebutt 3585). You can't gain
experience and seamanship unless you are actually out there and doing it. I
grew up racing at the Cruising Yacht Club in Sydney and if I remember
correctly in the 60's there were nine ocean races between 100 and 680 miles
in the annual sailing program. In addition there was a shorter summer and
winter series. The longer races started on a Friday evening at 5:00 pm and
finished one or two days later.
Clearly lifestyles have changed and the desire to spend several days at sea
in less than desirable conditions have changed. However it begs the
question about how you gain the basics of seamanship and how important it
is when things go wrong. The best professionals are clearly out there doing
it and have lots of experience. The question is how does the average sailor
get enough experience to be safe at sea?
* From Eric Sorensen:
A very good article in 'Butt 3586 by Randy Smith. Medicine Man sounds like
a pedal to the metal race boat. Good crew, good boat, the right decisions.
Putting up the largest sail in the inventory at 30+ knots seems extreme but
the owner probably OK'd the call and the crew carried it off for hours
until the limits of the sail were reached. That is racing. No matter, just
do it, and they did it correctly. If the weather had abated they might have
The guys on board will remember that sail fondly once back ashore with a
big tale to tell. Those memories are all we really take away, other than a
busted bit of kit. If you race you have them and know what you did was the
best you could do.
* From Jim DeSilva:
To Rich Jeffries' comments (in Scuttlebutt 3587) concerning Charley Cook
and the ISAF vote on kites or windsurfing, I quote from a story in The
Independent (May 6, 2012):
"What rocked Ramsden (Rory Ramsden, secretary of the RSX board association)
was the way in which the tide turned against him at the final, emotionally
charged meeting. John Crebbin, representing Ireland, made a strongly
supportive speech in favour of kites. He was joined by American
representative Charley Cook, Kamen Fillyov of Bulgaria, the chairman of
ISAF's windsurfing and kiteboarding committee, voted in favour of kites,
there was unexpectedly strong support from Spain, and even a speech in
favour from the former king of Greece."
So while, as you say, Charley is only one of 36 votes on the ISAF Council,
he does appear to have been a leader in influencing the overall vote. I
certainly agree the way the question was staged was not favorable, but
Charley was instrumental in sinking the windsurfers, the clubs who support
it, and the growing youth participation here in the US.
Story link: http://tinyurl.com/Independent-050912
COMMENT: We broke our policy and allowed Jim a second letter to provide the
source for his contention in how Charley Cook had played a role in the
vote. What should also be stated is that the U.S. has two seats on the ISAF
Council - Charley Cook and Cory Sertl. While their role is to make
decisions that are best for the sport, it is no secret the U.S. is a much
stronger medal contender in kiteboarding than windsurfing. - Craig Leweck,
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"I believe that everything happens for a reason. Usually, the reason is
that somebody screwed up." - Maxine
SPONSORS THIS WEEK
BIC Sport North America - New York Yacht Club
US Sailing - North Sails - Pure Yachting - Doyle Sails
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