SCUTTLEBUTT 3683 - Tuesday, September 25, 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: North Sails, Gowrie Group, and Soft Deck.
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
The date, 25 September 1983, remains vivid in the memories of Australians
who watched - perched on the edge of their sofas, thrusting into the air
punches of elation - as Australia II crossed the America's Cup finishing
line at Newport, USA.
It was one of those events where you can remember what you were doing at
the precise moment they saw or heard the good news. And, it moved then
Prime Minister Bob Hawke enough to famously declare: "Any boss who sacks
anyone for not turning up today is a bum."
Australians love the water, but yachting is not a spectator sport for the
masses. Why then, did the win have such an enormous impact?
John Bertrand, skipper of Australia II and now chairman of the Sport
Australia Hall of Fame, says the many superb performances by Australians -
notably Cathy Freeman's gold medal sprint in the Sydney Olympics and Kieran
Perkins' win from lane 8 at the Atlanta Olympics - make it difficult to
choose the ultimate achievement in Australian sporting history.
"We broke 132 years of American domination in winning the America's Cup -
we're proud of that!" says John.
It was a glow that was shared by many in the country, and more people chose
to become naturalised Australians shortly after the win, than ever before
or since. John says; "People felt part of this country for the first time.
Certainly there was a great injection of both pride and confidence into the
What about the controversy surrounding the secret weapon that gave the
Australian yacht its advantage over its American competitor - the upside
down, winged keel?
There has been a perennial argument over whether Australia II should have
been disqualified because the rules specified that competing yachts had to
be designed by residents or citizens of the country they represented. The
Americans alleged, but couldn't prove, the boat was not
Australian-designed. Then, in 2009, Dutch boat designer Peter van Oossanen
claimed Australian II designer, Ben Lexcen, had minimal involvement in the
keel's design, and a Dutch team were the true designers.
John claims it's a technicality. "Success has many fathers; failure has
none," he says. "To win the Cup required a great deal of work by many
people, but in terms of any controversy, the key was [that] Ben Lexcen was
the chief designer. So under the rules, Australia II was totally legal. Of
course, the America's Cup rules now don't even consider nationality."
Today, Australia II calls home the Western Australian Maritime Museum in
Source: Australian Geographic, http://tinyurl.com/AG-092412
NORTH-POWERED BOATS FINISH 1-7 AT ROLEX FARR 40 WORLDS!
Congratulations to Helmet Jahn and crew on 'Flash Gordon 6' for winning the
Farr 40 Worlds in Chicago last week! Never finishing worse than 7th in the
nine race series, Jahn and his crew won the World Championship by an
impressive 10 points! North-powered boats finished 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,9:
(1-Flash Gordon; 2-Enfant Terrible; 3-Transfusion; 4-Struntje Light;
5-Groovederci*; 6-PLENTY; 7-Nightshift*; 9-Kokomo). When performance
counts, the choice is clear: http://na.northsails.com (*-partial inventory)
TURNING THE TIDE
In a bid to get back on top of their AC45 game, Emirates Team New Zealand
have called on a San Franciscan to educate them. Dean Barker's crew "failed
to spark" in the last event of the America's Cup World Series on San
Francisco Bay, finishing seventh in fleet racing and fourth in match
So they've gone to Dee Smith, rated by many as one of the world's top
tacticians, to clue them up on the nuances of the bay before the next ACWS
event on October 3.
"We plan to focus on understanding of the venue, the tidal current and the
breeze, and the tactical situations that arise," Barker says.
Veteran Smith has almost 50 years of racing experience, and was in the
afterguard of America True in the 2000 America's Cup in Auckland, and
worked with the South African challenge Team Shosholoza in the 2007 Cup in
Barker's crew are heading to San Francisco early to be better prepared for
the regatta than they were for last month's event, when their focus had
been on sailing their new AC72.
"This regatta is as much about doing well in the event as it is about
understanding the conditions here for next year's Louis Vuitton Cup. This
is our last opportunity to sail on the course before then," Barker says --
Read on: http://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/boating/7722597/Dee-Smith-joins-ETNZ
ALOHA: Oracle Team USA is moving ahead with its plans to use the only
commercial harbor on Lanai as a temporary winter base of its operations,
according to a draft environmental assessment filed with the state of
Hawaii. Oracle Team USA has applied for several permits, including a
Special Management Area Use permit, with the Hawaii Department of
Transportation to set up operations at Kamalapau Harbor on Lanai from
December through March. The harbor is primarily used by Young Brothers Ltd.
for its weekly barge service. -- Read on: http://tinyurl.com/HI-092412
Picture for a moment, you are in charge of a college sailing team. You want
to build your program... raise money, maintain equipment, attract top
sailors. Schools have learned that being a National Championship host can
accomplish all three goals.
So you submit your bid to the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association (ICSA)
to host the Spring Nationals, which is comprised of three doublehanded
events: Womens, Team Racing, and Coed. You are exceedingly qualified, but
were unaware that you must provide boats from a specific manufacturer. You
had other plans. Your bid is rejected.
The manufacturer in question is LaserPerformance (LP), a long-time sponsor
of ICSA, and the terms of a recently revised sponsorship agreement are now
being learned. In the past, the host of the Nationals received funds to
help run the event if LP boats were used. The Nationals host could choose
to use non-LP boats; they just would not receive the financial support.
However, the revised agreement between LP and ICSA, which was drafted over
the summer and goes into effect for the 2012-13 season, has removed this
option clause, requiring college programs to make a choice. Either they buy
LP boats, which are the most expensive option, and become eligible to host
the Nationals. Or they buy their boats from another manufacturer, saving
money but eliminating the school from being a Nationals host.
Correspondence on this issue was buzzing on the ICSA email list over the
weekend. ICSA President Mitch Brindley defends the decision to revise the
sponsorship agreement, noting that it provides a vital partner with needed
exclusivity. But others question whether ICSA has overstepped their
authority in revising the agreement, and that the revised terms are no
longer in the best interest of ICSA member schools.
Clearly, there are some communication issues within ICSA, not helped by
their website which is in desperate need of attention. Commentary from MIT
Sailing Master Franny Charles and Tufts Coach Ken Legler, along with the
minutes from the Annual Meeting in May, can be read here:
The Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup in Hamilton, Bermuda will bring 16
international guest skippers - 13 are national champions - to compete
against Bermuda's top Opti sailors in what is truly a championship of
champion's event that showcases the world's best young sailing talent.
Now celebrating its 10th year, this coveted regatta (Oct. 4-7) not only
introduces Bermuda sailors to the world's top young Optimist dinghy
competitors, but it also gives young locals a chance to demonstrate their
maturity both as equal competitors on the water and gracious hosts off the
The essence of the Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup is much more than three
days of grueling racing on the Great Sound. It is on shore, too. There, the
young sailors bond as lifelong friends while also gaining professional
experience. They speak at a press conference, they sail the fourth and
final day on Hamilton Harbour in front of a capacity crowd, they get advice
from top coaches from the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club and they meet their
sailing heroes who are simultaneously racing in the Alpari World Match
Racing Tour's penultimate event - the Argo Group Gold Cup.
Additionally, the final race in the Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup sailed
on the finals Sunday is always sailed close to shore in Hamilton Harbour.
This is a spectator showcase for these young sailors. This year, to
accommodate a live TV broadcast of the Argo Group Gold Cup, the Junior Gold
Cup will be sailed just prior to the 'senior' Gold Cup finals, so the huge
spectator fleet and crowds on shore really add to the excitement. -- Read
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THINK OF IT AS ANTICIPATION TRAINING
By Kristen Berry, J World Annapolis
The other day I was daydreaming about sailing in some far off place and I
got to asking myself "Why does sailing occupy so much of my thought space?"
I concluded that it has a lot to do with the fact that I can actually sail
in my mind at any time. The time spent on the boat is just the execution of
what I have already anticipated in my mind.
I spend an awful lot of time anticipating my sailing. While most sports
require their players to anticipate, sailing requires the most anticipation
of them all. Whether you are a racer or a cruiser, sailing well requires
you to "play" in the future.
To sail well, sailors have to ask and answer questions like: "Will the wind
shift left or right?" or "What will the current be like when we go through
the canal tomorrow?" The better you get, the farther you can look ahead and
the more prepared you are to capitalize on strategic advantages or avoid
On the racecourse, successful anticipators know not only what the wind will
do next, but what they'll do when they get to it. Long before you yell
"starboard!," the anticipating racer knows whether she'll tack, duck or
The smartest cruisers are no different. They head toward shifts, seek
pressure and watch the current just like racers do, and those who can
anticipate will take advantage of those environmental opportunities.
Anticipating also gives you a chance to check just how good you are. If
what you thought would happen does not, you have a great learning
opportunity. Simply asking yourself what you failed to include in your
thought process and how can you better anticipate in the future will make
you a better sailor.
Maybe the best part of all is that you now have a very good excuse for
spending a little more time thinking about your sailing. Just think of it
as "anticipation training." -- http://tinyurl.com/AAS-092412
MATCH RACING DOESN'T CARE WHAT BATHROOM YOU USE
By Dave Perry, Chairman, US Sailing Match Racing Committee
I want to first congratulate Taylor Canfield and his team of Stephanie
Roble, Maggie Shea and Janel Zarkowsky for winning the 2012 U.S. Match
Racing Championship this past week. I also want to point out that of the
eight sailors in the Finals, sailed in Sonars with four in each boat, five
of the sailors were women. Debbie Capozzi and Becca Dellenbaugh were
sailing with the other finalist David Dellenbaugh. And many of those women
are excellent match racing skippers themselves.
Having been an integral part of the U.S. program over the last three years
in preparation for the 2012 Olympic women's match racing event, I am often
asked what I think will happen to "women's match racing" now that the event
has been removed from the 2016 Games. My answer is that match racing can be
done by men and women, boys and girls; there is no need to segregate the
sailors by gender to play the game.
When there was an Olympic event for women's match racing, it was natural to
have events for those women on that Olympic path. And I understand the
value in having women's-only events, where the sailors can gain experience
and confidence, and there are many excellent women's events in the U.S. But
the bottom line is that people who are good sailors and enjoy close
boat-to-boat tactics will enjoy and excel in match racing, regardless of
their gender. They just need to get into situations where they can learn
the moves, and then start going to events and getting better.
There are opportunities around the U.S. for sailors to learn about and try
match racing at a level appropriate to their experience. Match Racing is
now used for the Collegiate Sloop National Championship and the Team Racing
Nationals are coed. A site listing over 25 clubs and centers actively
running match racing in North America, as well as links to the US and ISAF
match racing calendars and much more information on match racing, including
a free instructional DVD called Welcome to Match Racing, is at:
* The World Sailing Speed Record Council has ratified a new 24 hour
Singlehanded world record. Francis Joyon (FRA), onboard the 95-foot
trimaran IDEC, covered a distance of 666.2 nm on July 30-31, 2012 - an
average speed of 27.75 knots. The previous record of 628.5 nm was set in
2008 by Thomas Coville (FRA) onboard the 105-foot trimaran Sodebo. --
* Fifty entries enjoyed favorable winds at the Sperry Top-Sider NOOD
Regatta San Francisco (Sept. 22-23). Local J/105 skipper J/Scooter Simmons
from San Francisco Yacht Club and crew were deemed the overall event
winner, earning an invitation to participate in the Sperry Top-Sider NOOD
Championship Regatta in the British Virgin Islands. This season-ending
event aboard Sunsail 44i's brings together all the overall winners in the
2012 NOOD series. -- Results: http://tinyurl.com/SW-092412
* The Audi Azzurra Sailing Team won the Audi Valencia Cup, the final event
of the 52 Super Series, earning them the overall season title. The 52 Super
Series, which has superseded the defunct MedCup, concluded its inaugural
season with three different boats winning regattas, Quantum Racing, Ran and
Audi Azzurra Sailing Team. The programme for next season's 52 Super Series
is already in place, starting in January in Key West. -- Full report:
* The 2012 Tornado World Championships (Sept. 15-22) on Lake Garda, Italy
was won by the Greek team of Iordanis Paschalidis and Kostas Trigonis, who
won 6 of the 8 races in the 40 boat fleet. Roland and Nahid Gaebler (GER)
took the Mixed crown and came second overall. -- Results:
* Marseille, France (September 24, 2012) - The world's top match racers are
in town for Match Race France this week, the sixth stage of the nine-event
Alpari World Match Racing Tour (AWMRT). Competing in the J/80, today's
practice session was cancelled due to strong wind. Qualifying begins
Tuesday. -- Full report: http://tinyurl.com/WMRT-092412
* The agendas, supporting papers and submissions which will be discussed at
the 2012 ISAF Annual Conference in Dun Laoghaire, Ireland this November
have been published online on the ISAF Meetings microsite. The 2012 ISAF
Annual Conference takes place from 1-11 November 2012 and will bring
together the ISAF Council, Committees and Commissions along with other
leading figures from the sailing world to debate, discuss and decide upon
the key issues in the sailing world. -- Read on:
* Nine teams competed at the FT 10 North American Championship, hosted by
Coronado Yacht Club in Coronado, CA on September 21-23, 2012. Two teams,
led by John Harrop on Justice and Eric Schlageter on Ruckus, built a
significant lead on the fleet, with Harrop winning the final race to take
the title by a point over Schlageter. Phillip Infelise on Mile High Klub
finished third. -- Results:
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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 Scott Peters:
What's up with these Asian teams that decided to enter the 34th America's
Cup? First it was the China Team and its revolving door of team members.
Now it's the Korean team that's on its third helm in less than a year. This
is what happens when teams enter the America's Cup for the wrong reasons.
Attention people, the America's Cup is not intended to be a platform to
sustain professional sailors, nor is it intended as a marketing vehicle to
promote pet projects. It is a sailing competition of the very highest
order, and it should only attract syndicates that hold first and foremost
the goal of winning.
With the likelihood now of only three teams competing in the Louis Vuitton
Cup, it is hard to imagine that this meager fleet can build interest for
the America's Cup Match next year. After the two month challenger series,
during which time it seems all too likely that one of the three teams will
be derailed due to damage, I can only think of one word to describe the
vision for AC34: Failure.
Memo to the group organizing AC35 - try under promising and over
delivering. You will always receive criticism, but don't ask for it.
SELLING. BUYING. HIRING.
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Young at heart, slightly older in other places.
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