SCUTTLEBUTT 3714 - Wednesday, November 7, 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: IYRS, Harken, and Ribcraft.
BEST IN THE WORLD
(November 6, 2012) - The International Sailing Federation (ISAF) and Rolex
announced that Ben Ainslie (GBR) and Lijia Xu (CHN) have been selected as
the 2012 Men's and Women's ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year.
This year there were five male and four female nominees who have been
shortlisted for the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards based on
their achievements during the qualifying period of 1 September 2011 to 31
The winners were selected by the ISAF Member National Authorities (MNAs),
the national governing bodies for sailing around the world. The winners
were announced at the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards
presentation and dinner on Tuesday 6 November 2012 at the Mansion House in
Each winner will be presented with the prestigious ISAF Rolex World Sailor
of the Year Award Trophy and a distinctive Rolex timepiece. Here were the
Ben Ainslie (GBR) - Finn, Olympic Gold Medal
Mathew Belcher/ Malcolm Page (AUS) - Men's 470, Olympic Gold Medal
Nathan Outteridge/ Iain Jensen (AUS) - 49er, Olympic Gold Medal
Loick Peyron (FRA), Outright Around the World Record
Tom Slingsby (AUS) - Laser, Olympic Gold Medal
Tamara Echegoyen/Angela Pumariega/Sofio Toro(ESP) - WMR, Olympic Gold Medal
Helena Lucas (GBR) - 2.4mR, Paralympic Gold Medal
Saskia Sills (GBR) - RS:X, ISAF Youth Sailing World Champion
Lijia Xu (CHN) - Laser Radial, Olympic Gold Medal
The qualifying accomplishments for each nominee can be read here:
Award website: http://www.sailing.org/worldsailor
CANCELLING MY TRIP TO LAS VEGAS
By Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt
My predictions proved wrong on who would win the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of
the Year awards.
I had predicted Helena Lucas (GBR) would win the female award on a close
vote over Lijia Xu (CHN). Helena had won the gold medal in the open
Paralympic singlehanded event, dominating a field that included three
former Paralympic gold medalists to become Great Britain's first ever
Paralympic sailing medalist. While Lijia's Olympic accomplishments were
significant, I viewed Helena's Paralympic triumphs to be more worthy.
On the men's side, I would have paid money to listen in on that vote. I
knew it would be hard to match the star power of Ben and Loick Peyron
(FRA), but the accomplishments of the three Australian nominees were
arguably superior. However, when Ben's gold medal at the 2012 Games made
him the most decorated sailing athlete in Olympic history (with five
medals), the voters had their backs against the wall.
While each of the Aussie nominees had won Gold in London and won their 2011
and 2012 World Championships during the nomination period, Ben had only won
the 2012 World title along with his Olympic medal. Ben was enroute to
winning the 2011 World title, but he ultimately finished off the podium
after he was disqualified by the International Jury for a Rule 69
The big question among the voters, I suspect, was whether the award winner
should be someone that had drawn negative attention to the sport. When Ben
grew frustrated with a media boat at the 2011 Worlds, he boarded the media
boat after he finished the race and physically shook its driver. His
actions were broadcast worldwide, and resulted in the International Jury
disqualifying Ainslie (disqualification non-excludable for gross
misconduct) from two races, scuttling his chance at the title.
By honoring Ben with the 2012 ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year for a
record fourth time, perhaps ISAF was sharing the blame for the 2011 Worlds
incident. The media boat had been hired by ISAF as the official host
broadcaster to videotape the racing, and the boat was close to the race
course. Additionally, the Sailing Instructions changed RRS 62 (Redress)
such that actions by media boats and helicopters were not grounds for
requesting redress. While Ben's actions were clearly in error, it was
ISAF's media objective which created the environment for such actions to
But none of that should matter. If this was a game of cards, two world
titles and a gold medal should beat one world title and a gold medal every
STEP INSIDE THE IYRS WORKSHOPS
Two Open Houses at the IYRS campuses in Newport and Bristol this month will
give career seekers a chance to step inside the school's workshops and
learn about training programs that have led to interesting careers for
alumni-from business owners, to boat builders, furniture makers, Volvo
Ocean Race land crew, and even those working at the leading edge of the
composites field. On November 7 the Newport campus and the Boatbuilding &
Restoration program will be showcased; on November 14 visit Bristol and the
Marine Systems and Composites Technology programs. For more information:
HELPING RECOVERY EFFORTS
Since its landfall on Monday evening October 29, Hurricane Sandy has left a
wake of destruction throughout the Mid-Atlantic and northeastern United
States. To help recovery efforts, Scuttlebutt seeks to share information
from those affected by Hurricane Sandy. Here are a few updates:
* A new storm that threatened to complicate Hurricane Sandy cleanup efforts
on Wednesday now looks like it will be weaker than expected. As the storm
moves up the Atlantic coast from Florida it now is expected to veer farther
offshore than earlier projections, but could still gust to 50 mph in New
York and New Jersey Wednesday afternoon and evening. Lauren Nash, a
meteorologist from the National Weather Service, said wind gusts might blow
down tree limbs weakened from Sandy and cause more power outages. On
Wednesday night, gusts may occasionally reach 60 mph in coastal Connecticut
and Long Island, she said. --Full report: http://tinyurl.com/NE-110612
* Coast Guard Sector New York urges boat owners to contact the sector
command center at 718-354-4120 to inquire or to provide information on any
missing or derelict boats since Hurricane Sandy made landfall. The Coast
Guard will not salvage vessels but will work with boat owners to locate
their vessel or provide information for commercial salvage. --
* The Hurricane Sandy Pollution Response Unified Command is responding to
numerous areas throughout New York and New Jersey with environmental
threats caused by Hurricane Sandy. Below are some of the responses as of
Nov. 4, 2012:
- Collection of 457,519 gallons of oily water mixture in Sewaren, N.J.
- Approximately 7,770 gallons of fuel was reportedly spilled in Linden,
- Recovered 780,000 gallons of oily/water mixture in Pert Amboy, N.J.
- Over 100 vessels observed ashore and approx. 40 more sunken along N.J.
Full report: http://tinyurl.com/CG2-110612
Please send your report to:
Of the twenty skippers that will take the start of the Vendee Globe solo
round the world race on Saturday in Les Sables-d'Olonne, France, Brit Alex
Thomson fired the first shot across the bows of his French rivals by
saying he doubts the favourites in the new generation of Open 60 boats will
make it around the world.
He is not the only one talking about whether the new lighter, Verdier VPLP
designed French boats (Banque Populaire 3, Macif, PRB, Virbac-Paprec 3) and
Juan Kouyoumdjian's powerboat, Cheminees Poujoulat, will finish, but most
are whispering it beside the pontoon.
Vincent Riou has already ruffled Arnaud Boissieres feathers by saying that
the Farr designed boats are "like chewing gum" - Boissieres bought Riou's
old 2008 Farr-designed PRB.
Thomson (who is also in a Farr-designed Hugo Boss) lobs this particular
grenade from inside the spartan carbon shell that he hopes will be his home
for three months. He is sitting in the small mission control station that
will keep him updated with weather and in contact with the outside world
and he keeps pulling the pins and no punches as the interview goes on.
"I just don't see most of them getting round the world," he says. "I think
we'll see an attrition rate again of at least 50%."
Although there is plenty of pressure on Thomson to finish a solo around the
world race for the first time, he is feeling more confident in his
preparation than ever and it shows.
"This is a confidence game and how confident are these guy really in their
boats?" He asks? It's a rhetorical question. "I know a lot of people who
don't believe in their boats. From the last Vendee Globe, the rule (change)
made one advantage and that was to be light and being light doesn't make
you more reliable; it does the opposite.
"You've only got to go back and see some of the problems these guys have
had. Yes, they've finished some races, but not without assistance and
people in the teams...everybody is pretty nervous about it." -- Read on:
WHY ARE ALL THESE RACES STARTING IN FRANCE?
Last Friday night, boat builder Cree Partridge and naval architect Jim
Antrim addressed a gathering at Berkeley Yacht Club (Berkeley, CA) on the
topic of their brainchild, sf2sf, a new ocean race.
Cree attributes the instigation of the idea to a comment by Jim regarding
around the world races: "Why are all these races starting in France?" The
first planning meeting to develop an around the world race that would start
and finish in San Francisco began over beers at the BYC bar. The organizers
have set 2015 as target because:
1. They think it will take that long;
2. They want to build on the interest in the America's Cup;
3. No one could think of any competing around the world race in 2015.
They've established a route, with each leg being a little more than 7,000
miles long. The first leg would be from San Francisco to Cape Horn, the
second from Cape Horn to the Cape of Good Hope, the third to New Zealand,
then home to San Francisco through the most dangerous of waters - the
tempting tropical isles of the South Seas. The race would not actually stop
in those places, mind you. This is a non-stop race. You can stop for
repairs, provisioning, crew changes, etc., if you need to, but the clock
keeps ticking. The time limit would be 90 days.
In more detail, the course will be:
- Start in San Francisco, Golden Gate Bridge
- Cape Horn to port
- South Georgia Island to starboard
- Cape of Good Hope to port
- Kerguelen Island to starboard
- Cape Leewin to port
- Finish in San Francisco, Golden Gate Bridge
Cree posed the rhetorical question, "Why San Francisco?", and answered
himself, "Why not? It's a great place to leave from and come back to - it's
thrilling to sail under the Golden Gate." And they're building on the
history of sailing on San Francisco Bay.
With a minimum amount of publicity - mostly just word of mouth - they
already have 15 potential entries interested with qualified boats. Jim got
a call from a guy in Australia just that day, and they've had inquiries
from England. The minimum size would be 40 feet for monohulls and 60 feet
for multihulls. Singlehanders and full crews would be welcome. Classes will
be determined depending on who enters. -- NorCalSailing, read on:
WORDS CANNOT EXPRESS: HARKEN'S PERSPECTIVE
In our small town of Pewaukee, Wisconsin, we looked out our window last
week and saw the western edge of Hurricane Sandy as it stretched East of us
for over 1,000 miles, leaving destruction in its path. Words cannot express
our feelings of shock and sorrow, knowing that our friends out east are
facing such immense challenges. To help in some small way, Harken is
hosting a blood drive in Pewaukee to aid recovery efforts. We want all of
you to know how much we are pulling for you as you rebuild and look to the
future. All the best from your friends at Harken, http://www.harken.com
* Nominations are now being accepted for the 2012 Canadian Sailing Awards.
All sailors and their supporters are invited to participate to nominate
outstanding sailors, athletes, coaches, instructors, race officials,
volunteers and events that have contributed to the sport over the past
year. The nomination deadline is November 15, 2012. Details:
* An overview of the changes made in the Racing Rules of Sailing for
2013-2016, along with a short explanation of the changes, have been
published by US Racing Rules Committee Chairman Rob Overton:
* On the occasion of its 43rd Annual General Meeting, the Offshore Racing
Congress (ORC) has announced a major step forward in the accuracy of its
Velocity Prediction Program (VPP) to be implemented for the 2013 sailing
season. One of the principal elements of this program, the Residuary
Resistance (Rr) formulation, has been revised to now be more accurate for a
broader range of yacht types that race within the ORC fleet database. --
Read on: http://www.orc.org/news/2012/121106.htm#news0
Robert "Bob" Sides passed away at age 96 on October 21st. The world lost
one kind, caring gentleman.
While not well known at the national level, Bob was a top sailor in the
Triangle, 210 and International Etchells classes around the North Shore of
Boston. But more so, he did everything in his life with such passion and
honor that his reputation became legendary.
In his early years, Bob was also a champion golfer and he remained a
competitive tennis player until age 93. Bob graduated from Phillips Academy
in 1934 and Harvard University in 1938. He joined the faculty at Phillips
in 1938 and retired as the Director of Admissions in 1972.
I had competed against him in the Etchells class for years, but with two
young children to teach how to sail, I decided not to race for the summer
of 1988. On the third weekend of the season, Dave Curtis asked if I could
crew for Bob. After that day I sailed with Bob for 12 years until a hip
replacement slowed me down.
When sailing with Bob at the 1998 Etchells Worlds, on a tow back into
Marblehead, we picked up John Bertrand. Bob spoke to Bertrand and said it
was an honor to be towed in with such a famous dignitary. John replied back
that around here that honor was being towed in with Bob Sides.
Then there was the day Dr. Dave Gundy accidently clipped us in a
port-starboard crossing. Instead of doing a 720, Dave sailed in. At the
bar, when asked why he didn't simply do his circles, Dave replied, "I hit
Bob Sides, a 720 isn't enough punishment."
Good by skipper, we will never forget you. -- Ken Block
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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 Peter Allen:
As for the Coast Guard, I agree with Mr Sandberg's comments (Sbutt 3712),
although the Coasties mostly don't seem to know a lot about sailboats. A
couple of decades ago one of the Eight Metre yachts based in Rochester (NY)
was returning from an evening's racing. With no engine and a following
wind, the Eight was running up the Genesee River when the skipper got a
speeding ticket from the Coast Guard. I understood that the matter was
resolved without too much rancor soon afterwards. If I had been that
skipper I'd have framed the citation and donated it to the yacht club. Just
last year they wanted to ban frostbiting in the river and it's turning
basin in front of Rochester Yacht Club. Might the frostbiters' Interclubs
be interfering with the other traffic in the river December through March?
* From Gerard Wolf, Chicago:
The recent excerpts in Scuttlebutt from Jim Kilroy's book has reminded me
how Kilroy and his "Kialoa" yachts stoked and then fueled my big boat
dreams many, many years ago. He was a true visionary and built wonderfully
fast and beautiful yachts.
At one point my ownership group looked long and hard at the last Kialoa,
but ultimately built Hull #1 of Bill Lee's Santa Cruz 52 - Clark Kent and
brought it to Chicago. While Kialoa was a great yacht with a great
tradition, the SC 52 proved to be a wonderful boat for its time and still
today, after owning the SC70 Mirage after selling the 52, Clark Kent still
remains my favorite boat.
* From Craig Yandow:
In the 1700 and 1800s, Navy ships sailed with a crewman for every one or
two tons of deadweight. The ships carried extra masts, line, sailcloth,
etc. in unbelievable quantities. They were floating repair systems.
Moreover the crews were used to going aloft and bringing the upper masts,
yards, and sails to the deck when the weather got ugly. They didn't have
power but they had systems that worked anyway. And they had enough people
to pump a couple feet of water per hour around the clock.
Ships like Bounty don't sail well with the wind forward of the beam.
Northern hemisphere wisdom is to assume starboard tack and let the storm
spit you out. But, if they lost power and had to "run for it" starting west
of Hurricane Sandy's track, they would have been trapped between a lee
shore and the storm.
On Bounty, fourteen sailors were not nearly enough crew and they would not
have had ship-sized manual pumps. I can totally agree with the decision to
call for help.
* From David M. Blakemore:
In Scuttlebutt 3706, Photos of the Week, this caption needs some
"Britannia, the famous yacht originally owned by King George V, son of
Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, was the most famous racing yacht in the
world at the turn of the last century. A replica of this prestigious J
Class yacht, K1 Britania, is amid a rebuild at her former home in Cowes on
the Isle of Wight."
Actually, George V was the son of King Edward VII, who was the son of
EDITOR'S NOTE: Don't shoot the messenger...the group rebuilding this
replica provided Scuttlebutt with the (mis)information.
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