SCUTTLEBUTT 3622 - Thursday, June 28, 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: Ullman Sails and APS.
* From 2-time Olympic medalist, JJ Fetter:
I had recently sailed an Etchells regatta, and was thinking about how much
fun leeward gates are (for everyone but the leader). Gates have really
added to our game by creating so many more tactical options and
opportunities for separation for a boat behind to quickly get back in the
But I have no idea who created the gate. Do you know? It doesn't seem right
that whoever invented such a good idea doesn't get more recognition (and
it's probably some race committee veteran who rarely gets thanked for
spending all their time running races and for whom setting gates added to
their daily workload).
* From rules guru and match race champion Dave Perry:
The first I am aware hearing of the concept of the gate is from Paul
Elvstrom (no surprise there!) in his book "Expert Dinghy and Keelboat
Racing" published in 1967. I have scanned three pages from the book for you
to read. Fascinating stuff:
Starboard rounding: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/news/12/starboard.pdf
For better racing in 1967 he was advocating:
- starboard roundings
- leeward gates
- a mid-line buoy on the starting line
- using a powerboat as the reaching mark for instantaneous adjustment
depending on the breeze strength.
- windward gates
Current trends for better racing:
- starboard roundings are the norm for team and match racing
- leeward gates are the norm (and have been since the '80's)
- mid-line buoys are more and more common
- using powerboats for marks is what they are doing in the current AC World
Windward gates have also been used by the Etchells Jaguar Series in Florida
when the fleet size warranted it. Here's a paper I wrote advocating the use
of windward gates in big fleet racing:
Do you know who it was that first put the idea of leeward gates into use?
Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org
SAILING'S MOST DRAMATIC EXPERIMENT
Consider the 34th America's Cup to be the sailing's most dramatic
experiment. Lots of investment has been made to increase interest in the
event, largely from the non-sailing corners of the world. So what do these
people know about the event? Here is what the New York Times fed them this
Two years ago the officials who run the America's Cup made an important
decision: they were going to change professional sailing into a sport that
was actually fun to watch.
This was a big shift for a sport that has traditionally been indifferent to
the idea of an audience. But new revenue was needed to help sailing teams
struggling to raise the tens of millions of dollars needed to build and
sail the boats for the Cup, so the organization decided to chase the
broadcast television deals and sponsorships that are the lifeblood of many
The basic strategy was to add increasing speed and danger to sailing, by
using winged catamarans, boats that move much faster, but also capsize
easily, and holding races close to shore, where wind patterns are less
The America's Cup will get its first chance to test its product with a
United States audience this weekend, when a part of the World Series race
in Newport, R.I., will be broadcast on NBC. This is the first time a
professional sailing race will be shown live on a major American network in
Assuming that faster, more dangerous races can generate interest, there is
still one major challenge: even sailors acknowledge that their sport can be
almost incomprehensible to the naked eye.
The task of changing this belongs to Stan Honey, whom the America's Cup
hired as its director of technology last spring. Honey has made a career
out of creating augmented reality for sports broadcasts. He is best known
for the glowing first-down line in football telecasts, and he has also
developed glowing hockey pucks for N.H.L. games, the illuminated strike
zone for baseball and various graphics for Nascar races.
Sailing is in more dire need of augmented reality than perhaps any other
sport, said Honey, a former professional sailor. Boats tack back and forth,
trying to catch pockets of wind that will propel them through a race's
various legs. It can be difficult to determine who is ahead, or what
strategy is being employed to remain there.
"If you don't put the graphics on the water, you end up with people saying,
O.K., white triangles on a blue background," Honey said. -- Read on:
OBSERVATION: The last few days have demonstrated how fond social media
users are of AC45s on foils or colliding with other boats. Makes us wonder
if the first AC72 incident could sink the Internet. Regarding the
collision, it was Team New Zealand's AC45 that collided on Tuesday with a
race committee boat during practice prior to the start of the AC World
Series in Newport. Skipper Dean Barker said he had to luff to avoid a
couple of spectator boats and lifted a hull to avoid the official boat....
just not high enough. Full story:
BROADCAST: The AC World Series begins in Newport on Thursday. Here are the
QUOTE / UNQUOTE
"We feel fast on the open course, but we need to start well. That is key.
All the things that you can control, you have to control. Competition,
Mother Nature and the current are going to be the biggest variables in
performance here. The boats are so fast, that you are punished if you don't
do things properly." - Terry Hutchinson (USA), Artemis Racing skipper,
about the race course at the AC World Series in Newport, RI.
ULLMAN SAILS POWER BIG WINS AT LONG BEACH RW
Last week's Ullman Sails Long Beach Race Week hosted three days of
exceptional racing with sunny skies and breeze up to 20kts. Congratulations
to several Ullman Sails customers who swept up trophies in one design and
handicap classes! John Laun's "Caper" convincingly won the J/120 class by
10 points and Gary Mozer's J/105 "Current Obession2" finished first in
class by 8 points. In the 15-boat Viper 640 fleet, Jim Sears on "the
F.N.G." won first overall with Ed Feo's "Locomotion" finishing a close
second. And Jay Steinbeck's "Margaritaville" won PHRF-1 powered by a new
Ullman Sails GP Race mainsail.
The competition for the 34th America's Cup will be on San Francisco Bay for
the sailors, but another scoreboard will be following the action on land.
And this action is vital to the success of the event.
The San Francisco Travel Association, the official tourism marketing
organization for the City and County of San Francisco, announced that the
city welcomed 2,872,000 international visitors in 2011, an increase of
nearly 10 percent over 2010 and a nearly 30 percent increase over 2009.
Tourism is San Francisco's largest private-sector employer.
Europe continues to be the largest overseas market for San Francisco, with
the United Kingdom as the number one market, Germany a close second, and
France in third. Asia is the second largest overseas market for San
Francisco, with Oceania as the third.
"The continued growth in the overseas market is a positive sign that our
economy is improving and that San Francisco continues to be a desirable
destination for both business and leisure travelers," said Joe
D'Alessandro, San Francisco Travel president and CEO. "We look forward to
welcoming the America's Cup World Series later this summer and the
America's Cup in 2013, which will attract even more visitors to San
The tourism industry generated $526 million in taxes for the City of San
Francisco, up 8.6 percent from the previous year. Tourism supported 71,403
jobs in 2011 with an annual payroll of $2.06 billion. In 2011, there was an
average of 129,499 visitors in San Francisco each day. Visitor spending
equated to $23.19 million daily (including spending related to meetings and
The 2012 Olympics will be the third time London has hosted the Summer
Games. When was the last time that London hosted the Games?
TRYING TO PROVE HISTORY WRONG
By Ken Read, PUMA skipper
It's crunch time. Last chance at the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12. Three
scoring chances left. An In-Port Race here in Lorient, France; the short
leg to Galway, Ireland; and finally the In-Port in Galway. Then it is over.
This 39,000-mile odyssey is over.
Forget about The Race for a moment. When this race starts it is impossible
to see the light at the end of the tunnel. It is really daunting. So many
oceans to cross, so many storms to survive. Man-made obstacles. Naturally
made obstacles. Whales, albatross, dolphins, starry nights to admire and
jet-black skies torn apart by lightning. It goes on and on. Day and night
blend together, 20-day leg after 20-day leg. Short stopovers and even
shorter time with families and friends. The ocean is the highway and we are
cruising it as fast as possible without crashing and burning.
What an adventure. And we have 400 miles to go before this is in the books.
When I did my first circumnavigation of the globe in 2007-08, I thought it
was crazy. I never for a moment thought I would do a Volvo, never mind two.
This race has been different. The race has been relentless. No room for a
single mistake. And if you made one, you paid dearly. The competition is
simply that good.
When you sign up to do anything against the best, you surely expect to get
pushed. We have been pushed. Ever since we broke our mast on Leg 1, we have
fought an uphill battle. Most thought we would never have a chance. In
fact, no one has ever won the Volvo after they were unable to complete a
leg. With our broken mast in the middle of the Atlantic on Leg 1, we
couldn't finish. Since then we have been trying to prove history wrong.
Read more here: http://tinyurl.com/KR-062712
FOR SALE: Puma's Mar Mostro, competing now in the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12,
is on the market. "Mar Mostro is an amazing yacht, whether sailing around
the world or on an IRC race track," Ken Read, Mar Mostro skipper. "We were
very pleasantly surprised when we won the only two IRC events we sailed in!
Around the buoys and in the Transatlantic Race, both against very stiff IRC
competition, Mar Mostro was fast and reliable in all conditions. Whoever
buys this boat will share the wild ride PUMA Ocean Racing has been on
during our epic and exciting around-the-world race!" For boat specs and
details, visit http://www.pumavolvo70forsale.com
SCHEDULE: Competition resumes again this Friday for the Pro-Am Race, the
In-Port Race on Saturday and the final offshore leg from Lorient to Galway,
Ireland (485nm) on Sunday. Schedule:
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
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
* Max Skelley Joins North Sails
* Melges appoints Andrew Lowe as General Manager
* Nautor expands into Asian market
View updates here: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/forum/industry_news
* San Francisco, CA (June 27, 2012) - Continuing a tradition of firsts in
Grand Prix Yacht Racing, organizers at the most prestigious inshore racing
series on the U.S. West Coast, the Rolex Big Boat Series, have announced
today their decision to form both an HPR (High Performance Rule) class and
a Catamaran class as competing divisions at this year's event, taking place
at St. Francis Yacht Club on September 6-9, 2012. -- Read on:
* Gothenburg, Sweden (June 27, 2012) - The opening round of the 2012 ISAF
Women's Match Racing Worlds was completed today, with the top four teams
from Group A and Group B advancing to the Gold group to sail for the World
title. The winners of their groups were Anna Tunnicliffe (USA) and Silja
Lehtinen (FIN), who both posted perfect 7-0 records. Racing continues with
the Finals on Saturday. Current standings:
* The Bermuda Race Organizing Committee reports that two boats returning to
the U.S. from the Newport Bermuda Race had faced emergency situations that
are being managed by Bermuda Radio and the US Coast Guard. The 41-foot
'Avenir' reported rudder damage, requiring the crew to be rescued by the
Cruise ship 'Norwegian Star'. Also, the 42-foot 'Convictus Maximus' was in
need of assistance after a crew member onboard suffered a suspected spinal
injury. -- Full report: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/news/12/0627/
* (June 27, 2012) - The ISAF World Sailing Rankings for the Olympic fleet
racing events have been released, with the next release to follow the
Olympics in August. Top North American is Amanda Clark/ Sarah Lihan (USA),
third in the Women's Doublehanded event (470). -- Details:
* Vancouver, BC (June 24, 2012) - The Farr 30 Canadian National
Championships attracted eight teams from Canada and the US for ten races
over three days on picturesque English Bay. Hosted by the beautiful Royal
Vancouver Yacht Club, conditions ranged from moderate to light breeze and
pouring rain on day one, to glorious sunshine and a stable eight to ten
knot breeze on the final day of racing. Taking the title was Canadian
Andrew Hamilton on 'Through'. -- Full story:
SEND US YOUR RACE REPORTS
Posting your event information on the free, self-serve Scuttlebutt Event
Calendar tool is the easiest way to communicate to both sailors and sailing
media. But don't stop there... send us your race reports too. Here are some
of the upcoming events listed on the calendar:
* Jun 30-July 2 - Lake Huron International Regatta - Port Huron, MI, USA
* Jul 4-7 - Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship - Newport, RI, USA
* Jul 5-8 - Junior Olympic Festival - Annapolis, MD, USA
* Jul 5-8 - Extreme Sailing Series, Act 4 - Porto, Portugal
View all the events at http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/calendar
IN MPX WE TRUST
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highest level and last. Designed with inshore and round-the-cans racers in
mind, the MPX Race line is perfect for men and women who need trimmed down
high performance gear paired with a broad range of movement for performance
sailing. You can put trust in your gear because Musto uses only top end
Gore-Tex brand Pro Shell Laminate in the MPX. APS knows wet, cold, and
drained is no way to spend your valuable time on the course ... so upgrade
to MPX Race and focus on winning: http://bit.ly/LRPdTh
The last time London hosted the Olympic Games was 1948, and for sailing,
Torquay was the venue. The equipment used was the Firefly, Swallow, Star,
Dragon and Six metre. Despite the apparent home advantage, Britain won just
one medal, a gold in the Swallows, while the American team scooped up four
medals in the five classes. It was at these Games that 20 year old Paul
Elvstrom began his impressive Olympic career, winning the Gold medal in the
Firefly. Full coverage from these Games at Yachting World:
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 Tom Materna:
I read the SPOT non-action (in Scuttlebutt 3617) with great concern and
posted it to our rider group that uses them. Roger, who has been doing
adventures for years, has this info set up to make SPOT work better which
may have helped save a life. It may in the future. This is a reply I got:
This is why I created a website (http://whereamiriding.com/) that monitors
every update from every user every 10 minutes. If someone hits their HELP
button, I know about it regardless of who it is and if I'm one of their
'lucky 7' on their SPOT details page. If you hit the 911 button, that
information gets sent to SPOT and they make the calls to the emergency
contact you've setup on your account.
When people register they also have the option of filling out some
"Emergency Contact" information so I can get on the phone and call people
even if I don't know them. Had this user been registered on my site and hit
the HELP button prior to 911, a pair of digital eyes would have known he
needed help before a pair of real eyes do...and to me that's better than
not having any eyes at all watching over you.
Doesn't it completely suck that if you hit the 911 button, that information
doesn't get sent to your SPOT page?? SPOT needs to fix that. The 'HELP'
button information does though, so if you need to hit the 911 button, I'd
say hit the HELP button first, then the 911 button after that. At least
your people get notified, THEN your contact will get a call from the GEOS
center. Just a hint if you need it sometime. -- Scuttlebutt forum, read on:
I didn't make it to the gym today. That establishes a new record.
SPONSORS THIS WEEK
Quantum Sails - Melges Performance Sailboats - North Sails
US Sailing - Allen Insurance and Financial - IYRS - Summit Yachts
KO Sailing - Ullman Sails - APS - Pure Yachting - Henri Lloyd
Need stuff? Look here: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/ssc/suppliers