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SCUTTLEBUTT 3668 - Tuesday, September 4, 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: Atlantis WeatherGear, Team One Newport, and Soft Deck.
HOW WILL HISTORY JUDGE THE 34TH AMERICA'S CUP?
Australian Will Baillieu was on the handles in 1983 when Australia II won
the America's Cup, breaking the longest-running winning streak in the
history of sport (132 years). What Will remembers is what the event was,
and has concerns about what the event is now. Read on...
A quote in Scuttlebutt 3666 from professional snowboarder Travis Rice:
"We're living in a world where it's hard to do dumb s---. What's amazing to
me about sailing is how boundless it is. You're not protected by this
safety net of stoplights and safety features. You're truly at the mercy of
your own decisions, and if you're an idiot you're going to get smacked."
Like...wow! The real value of "Cross Promotion" has never been more
apparent. Travis has enlightened us with this account of his experience
aboard an AC45. I am sure we are all grateful that the event got his
attention at all. Travis assures us that this style of racing will take
sailing "...from this frumpy old man's sport to something that people are
way more interested in watching." Like...even people of his generation
might be interested in it!
Well, why stop there Travis?
Why not include a Vegas Pool Party leg in the next AC event? At least on
the AC45s there is room on deck for Prince Harry, a snooker table and a few
naked ladies. Or, possibly tequila shots and laybacks during the downwind
legs? Anything to make this event more watchable for Gen Y.
We don't want their attention to stray, and we certainly don't want any of
those frumpy old men to have anything to do with it.
Maybe we could introduce an element of Big Brother to America's Cup; put a
crew of complete strangers on each boat and just see what happens as they
race the AC series. How about "Survivor - America's Cup"? We could lay
mines on the course. Exploding boats would make great television; audience
numbers would be huge.
What Travis seems to have overlooked is that America's Cup is a match race,
with a very long history; the very pinnacle of sailing.
Boat on boat, tactical racing, involving rapid and complicated decision
making, much of it subtle. It is about high performance, low tolerance, up
close racing, between two boats. AC boats have been traditionally sailed by
very fit, young athletes with marvelous skills. "Frumpy old men" are
required to fund them, as they still are now.
The history of the event and the subtleties of match racing may be lost on
Travis Rice and others of his demographic, but surely not to just about
Does the event really need to compete for audiences with tacky TV reality
shows? Does it really need these Christmas Cracker boats? Fast boats might
add an extra element in the potential for catastrophic failure, but they
make for poor match racing. The last AC Deed of Gift "match" was surely
testament to that.
The lack of challenger syndicates for the 34th AC is a worrying sign, but
it's not for any lack of bells and whistles.
The dressing up of the America's Cup for uninformed TV audiences with
notoriously low attention spans, has cheapened the event and turned it into
just another reality TV spectacle. This is a genre that has been almost
done to death already. Inevitably it will be consigned to the TV
wastebasket, when people get bored and change channels.
And where will that leave America's Cup?
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SHEDDING LIGHT ON THE DARK SIDE
By Michelle Slade, MIJ
After decades of owning and racing monohulls, Peter Stoneberg jests that
his life was ruined the day he stepped foot on a catamaran...but for which
he'll be forever grateful.
The occasion was some five years ago and he's never looked back, even after
flipping his catamaran Shadow, a ProSail 40, twice in and around the bay,
sustaining significant damage.
"Clearly multihulls are the way of the future," Stoneberg said. "I think
they are the most exciting boats in the world to sail."
Even five years ago, multihull sailing was still considered the "darker"
side of sailing, the boats themselves lacking the traditional lines, grace
and mystique of the monohull. Liken it to windsurfing versus kiteboarding,
or downhill skiing versus snowboarding, the general consensus was about the
same: multihulls were not really to be taken seriously, especially on the
However, San Francisco just hosted the America's Cup World Series, the
biggest sailing event ever for the Bay that entertained over 150,000 people
who watched AC45 catamarans race along the city front.
Over in Tiburon (CA), the fastest boat on the planet, l'Hydroptere DCNS, a
79-foot trimaran, is presently moored in front of the Corinthian Yacht
Club. She holds the overall world record for a nautical mile at a speed of
And, this year, a sailing regatta that's been held annually on the Bay
since 1964, the Rolex Big Boat Series (BBS) has for the first time added a
multihull division. BBS will be contested Sept. 6-9, hosted by the St
Francis Yacht Club. Stoneberg, St FYC Commodore, was right behind the
effort to get multihulls on board.
"New innovations like some of the multihulls will continue to make BBS a
great regatta," Stoneberg said. "I think people are looking for different
boat classes for their sailing pleasure, at short-hand and single-hand
boats, team racing and match racing. The St FYC has responded to these
trends: we did the first kiteboard race five years ago, now it's in the
BBS has seven multihulls signed up to race this week, from 33 to 45 feet,
including an SL33 which is a new design all-carbon foiling catamaran being
used as a training boat by America's Cup teams Emirates Team NZ and Luna
Stoneberg will be racing Shadow, built in 1987 and the first of the ProSail
models that were sailed by top U.S. sailors including Bay Area's Tom
Blackaller, Randy Smyth, Dennis Conner and Cam Lewis. Stoneberg's boat was
once owned by Connor, who bought the boat to train on in preparation for
the Stars & Stripes 60 catamaran on which he skippered - and won - the 1988
America's Cup. -- Read on: http://tinyurl.com/MIJ-090212
TURBO SAILING: USING YOUR STAYSAIL
By Tony Bull, Bull Sails
More and more on the race course we are seeing staysails becoming
increasingly prevalent again. Once upon a time the staysail was a very
popular sail. In the days of the RORC rule in the late 60's it was
commonplace for every serious racer to have a reaching rig of overlapping
staysail and a series of yankees for different wind conditions. In the IOR
days that followed there spawned a whole range of "under the spinnaker"
style staysails, mostly sporting ridiculous names; Tall Boys, Lazy Boy's,
Golden Dazy Staysails and even the ubiquitous Blooper and numerous others
as all sorts of combinations and rigs were tried.
As the IMS and later the IRC rules came along, the staysails narrowed down
to two main groups, sensibly called the Spinnaker Staysail for off wind
work and the Genoa Staysail as the name implies for closer to the wind.
The use of these sails requires a lot of thought and attention, if not used
correctly they can slow a boat down drastically, but when used acceptably
they provide a real turbo effect. They do however require constant
monitoring and attention. Far too many times people assume they are simply
a sail you just hoist and think the extra area will do the job, like any
sail they need to be trimmed and if left alone can be extremely
detrimental. -- Read on:
A STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION
The Canadian Yachting Association has announced the appointment of Chris
Cook to the new position of Development Team Manager.
CYA has been developing a strategy for High Performance Sailing to embrace
the next two Olympic/Paralympic Quadrennials. Entitled the 2020 Vision, the
plan embraces a comprehensive approach to bridging the gap between
provincial and national levels and international performance. The Canadian
Sailing Development Team will focus on this area, using Chris's skill and
experience to identify and nurture talent in a world class structure
leading to consistent long term success on the International Stage.
CYA President, Alan Lombard, commenting on the appointment, said, "CYA is
determined to put in place a long term sustainable structure that will
equip our young sailors with the skills and experience to perform at the
highest levels. Chris Cook's appointment is one of a number of exciting
initiatives that CYA is putting in place"
CYA's High Performance Director Ken Dool said, "CYA is determined to
achieve results through the creation of a system that is both robust and
World Class. The addition of Chris in a development coaching capacity will
help direct young athletes towards achieving both personal and federation
Chris is a high performing Finn sailor who finished 5th in the 2008 Olympic
Games and had numerous podium finishes at International and North American
based championships including a recent Bronze Medal finish at the World Cup
Event in Palma in 2012. Chris was on target to compete in his second games
this year until struck by illness in the final trial. His immediate support
for his fellow Finn sailor, Greg Douglas, who benefitted most from Chris's
withdrawal, was a display of his high quality sportsmanship.
Chris will take up his role effective immediately, joining the current High
Performance Management Team of Brian Todd, Steve Mitchell, Erik Stibbe and
High Performance Director Ken Dool. -- Full report:
COMMENT: Kudos to Canada for quickly addressing the need to enhance their
youth development. For North America to get back on the podium at the 2016
Olympics, an improved plan among neighboring countries for the
post-Optimist years must be part of the program. - Craig Leweck,
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* Weymouth, UK (September 3, 2012) - Three days of competition is now
complete at the 2012 Paralympic Sailing Regatta, with events held in
Single-Person Keelboat (2.4mR), Two-Person Keelboat (SKUD18), and
Three-Person Keelboat (Sonar). Mostly light winds have prevailed, but with
six of the 11 races now completed, a discard in the scoring is permitted.
Leading the North American contingent is SKUD 18 team Jen French/ JP
Creignou (USA) in third, just two points off the lead. Competition
concludes September 6. Results:
* Gimli, Manitoba (September 1, 2012) - The Craig & Ross Canadian Youth
National Sailing Championships concluded today after four days of racing on
Lake Winnipeg. Wind varied throughout the week, with racing held in the
Laser, Laser Radial, Laser 4.7, Club 420, 29er, and Techno 293. Competitors
from British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and
Nova Scotia came together for the first stage of the selection process for
the 2013 ISAF Youth World Team. Details here:
* America's Cup defender Oracle Team USA took their first AC72, 17, sailing
for the first time on Friday, August 31. After two hours, the session on
San Francisco Bay was stopped due to a daggerboard failure in the starboard
hull. Boat and crew returned safely to the team's Pier 80 base, with no
announcement yet on when they would resume testing. Photos and video here:
* Port Washington, NY (September 2, 2012) - Light winds prevailed for the
fourth and final day of the Knickerbocker Cup, the third stop on the ISAF
Grade 2 US Grand Slam Series. In the Finals and Petit Finals, William
Tiller (NZL) went up one nil over Nicolai Sehested (DEN) and Sally Barkow
(USA) went up one nil on David Gilmour (AUS), respectively. After waiting
several hours for wind with a 3:30pm deadline looming, a building southerly
breeze gave Tiller another win to take the title 2-0, with Sehested
finishing second and Barkow third. -- Daily reports:
* Cardiff, Wales (September 2, 2012) - With five boats mathematically
capable of winning Act 5 of the Extreme Sailing Series going in to final
race, it was the American Morgan Larson skippered Oman Air who would win
the title and deny Leigh McMillan (GBR) helming The Wave, Muscat his fourth
straight win. McMillan holds the season overall lead with two Acts
remaining, with Larson in second. -- Full story:
* The Extreme Sailing Series has been forced to cancel Act 6 of the
eight-Act global tour to be staged in Trapani, Sicily on September 13-16.
The Province of Trapani and the regional government of Sicily have failed
to execute their financial and operational obligations, necessary to host
the event. Trapani had hosted Extreme Sailing Series events in 2010 and
2011. The next Act will be in Nice, France on October 18-21. -- Full
* St. Moritz, Switzerland (September 2, 2012) - A fantastic Final battle
between two-time St. Moritz Match Race winner Mathieu Richard (FRA) and
Keith Swinton was won by the young Australian whilst Pierre-Antoine Morvan
(FRA) gave his overall Alpari World Match Racing Tour challenge a boost
with a third-place finish today. Bjorn Hansen (SWE) and Ian Williams (GBR),
who were knocked out earlier in the event, still retain the top two
positions in the overall season rankings. The tour will resume at Match
Race France in Marseille from September 24-29. -- Full report:
* An average of 860,000 people tuned in to watch America's Cup World Series
on San Francisco Bay last Sunday (Aug. 26), NBC said. The nationwide TV
audience - which equates to a rating of 0.6 - "is a good number," said a
spokesman for NBC Sports. "It proves there is an audience. We're going to
build on that." -- SF Business Times, read on:
* (September 2, 2012) - Dr. Edmund B. 'Ned' Cabot, a retired surgeon and
scion of a Boston Brahmin family, drowned Saturday off the coast of
Newfoundland, when a rogue wave swept him from his yacht, the Royal
Canadian Mounted Police said today. Cabot, 69, a lifelong sailor, had
participated in the 2009-10 Around the Americas campaign, a sailing
circumnavigation of the American continents with the mission of inspiring,
educating, and engaging citizens of the Americas to protect their oceans.
-- Full story: http://tinyurl.com/B-090212
* San Francisco, CA (August 31, 2012) - Kiteboards, led by Johnny
Heineken's record time, celebrated their recent upgrade to an Olympic class
in style Friday by sweeping the first seven places in the Ronstan Bridge to
Bridge Race, while New Zealand's C-Tech, the first 18 Skiff to finish,
claimed the championship in the Nespresso International 18 Skiff Regatta
hosted by the St. Francis Yacht Club. -- Daily reports:
In order for our sport to succeed, we depend on volunteers - here's a brief
tale of a great volunteer / sailor we just lost.
Claire Titgemeyer gave back, paid it forward, however you want to describe
it. She was an amazing giver. If you've raced through the Lake Erie area or
traveled to regattas, like SORC, KWRW, Charleston RW, Cleveland RW, Miami
OCR or sailed in J22, J24, Highlander, Thistle, Ensign and countless other
championship events, you've benefitted from her volunteerism and been a
part of her legacy.
Claire didn't "run" many races, but boy did she help...she loved greeting
crews at a registration desk, weighing in the "cuties" in their skivvies,
trying to make weight and seeing each team as they checked in each morning
on the water on the committee boat. She never asked for thanks, she knew
how much it meant to all of us that we have good races, friendly faces and
that our sport / clubs were successful hosting great sailors and great
events. She wasn't in the spotlight, was happy to be a part of it all and
never asked for recognition.
She sailed too, rarely at the helm, but she could trim a main and provide
moral support for a crew like no other, in my family racing "glory days",
she fed us, "beered" us and made sure we had a fun, but safe experience.
She was involved in sailing for over 50 years and she loved being on the
water. Just last month she was actively racing with a women's ensign team
out of Edgewater YC - that is when she wasn't at a registration desk or at
the transom of a committee boat checking in, recording times or just
smiling at the competitors!
We lost Mom (Mimsie, Claire or Mrs T - whatever you called her) last night
(Aug. 30). She had a hell of a fight with a damn mean cancer! She was an
amazing woman, not only did she give to the sport of sailing, she was a
teacher for 37 years, volunteered with local women's organizations, worked
the bookmobile at local hospitals, sang joyously in church choirs, directed
musicals, mentored students during their student teaching classes and so
much more...she touched so many lives in her 74 years on earth!
So - I'd like to say thanks to Mom for showing me how give back. My hope is
that I can live up to her standards and that others can be motivated by her
giving spirit and caring heart. - Mike Titgemeyer (Mikie), Cleveland, OH/
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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 Phil Garland:
Stephen Kasnet's letter (SBUTT 3667) refers to Alan Gurney's 33' design
"Hotfoot" (not Hotspur). She is still owned and sailed by Chuck Blair's
step-son George Brush on Martha's Vineyard. George tells stories about
Chuck and how fanatic he was about weight on the boat. He would ask if
anyone wanted water they could put it in the kettle. She was one of Alan's
* From Norm Rabe:
Art Ahrens covered the basics of a "A Staysail for Racing" for the C&C 30
and for my Ranger 26 (in Scuttlebutt 3668). These boats were somewhat
underpowered and any addition of sail area was welcome. The staysail should
help keep flow attached to the mainsail. If the spinnaker begins to fold,
blow the staysail; as the wind lightens, douse the staysail as it is
hurting the spinnaker. A well trimmed staysail gets into the mind of a
competitor as you pass him.
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