Scuttlebutt Today
  Archived Newsletters »
  Features »
  Photos »

SCUTTLEBUTT 3758 - Monday, January 21, 2013

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: JK3 Nautical Enterprises and Dieball Sailing.

Remember the good old days... pre 2008? Everything has been harder since
then, with Key West Race Week fully caught in the cross hairs. But when
your town hosts the #3 favorite bar in the U.S. (The Green Parrot), your
winter conditions are better than most summer weather, and jeez... you just
got to sail, the event succeeds in surviving. Event organizer Peter Craig
provides an update on the 2013 edition, which starts this week:
We are very happy in that we've been able to adapt over the past four years
and have created a business model with a smaller fleet that can work.
Despite a smaller fleet and class size, the competitors still come from
across the country and around the world and the January racing in Key West
is something people are very happy with.

That said, we are now very much dependent on continued support from all of
our sponsors - industry partners and the City of Key West. It's safe to say
that without Quantum filling that critical title sponsor position, we
wouldn't be able to continue with the regatta. With the bigger fleets of
yesteryear, we could survive a title sponsor hiatus every now and again -
that's not the case today.

Big picture on the various class stories are tied to boat owner expenses
and ongoing difficult economy... smaller boats, less crew, less for travel,
housing and food expenses. Another major is shipping boats to Key West.
There is absolutely no 'local component' to the Key West fleet as a base.
We start with zero in that department.

I've been told by those in the know that trailering a boat to Key West is
now 3 to 5 times what it was 5 years ago. That was always the biggest
expense for many anyway, so when you multiply that number it gets to be
untenable for many. Hence the smaller, easily trailered boats (M24, M32,

The shore side venue at the bottom of Caroline Street at Kelly's Caribbean
has been a big hit with the competitors these past two years and we're back
for a third and hoping that it's our permanent venue going forward. We're
taking a big step forward this year with improved real time and near real
time coverage of the regatta with a new dashboard that will create a number
of great new features for those who can't be with us. Stay tuned to the
event website ( on
Monday, January 21st.

Here are my thoughts on some of the classes for the 2013 edition... read

* At Key West on Sunday, a training day for boats competing this week,
sailing photographer/videographer Leighton O’Connor took a practice ride on
Decision, the Carkeek 40 owned and skippered by the father and son Murray
team. According to Stephen Junior, Decision’s up against some stiff
competition this week but they hope to stay out in front and get to those
weather marks first to stay out of the bad air. Check out O’Connor’s ride:

(January 20, 2013; Day 72) - The toughest South Atlantic that any of the
skippers stuck in it can remember is beginning to turn the screw on
supplies. Being dropped by a fickle wind or battered by a north one is one
thing, but sixth-placed Mike Golding Gamesa) has revealed that just having
enough to run his auto-pilots in the busy shipping lanes for the finish is
increasingly becoming a worry.

“We are looking at 5 days added to the route, potentially, by the problems
in the South Atlantic,” Golding said. “That puts extra pressure on
everything - fuel, food, and this has been a very hard period for the boat
as well; going upwind in strong breeze, fully ballasted puts extra pressure
on the boat.

In second place, Armel Le Cléac’h (Banque Populaire) has been the fastest
in over the last 24 hours, averaging 15.4 knots and making 369.8 miles. He
has won back nine miles from Francois Gabart (MACIF) in that time and is
144.7 miles behind - not such a deficit if they were heading downwind, but
it is tough to bridge upwind in the north easterlies.

The fleet should start feeling the effect of the Azores high tomorrow and
Le Cléac’h hopes they pick some downwind as they skirt that high.
Meanwhile, such has been Gabart’s speed over the last two days that he’s
now predicting a slightly earlier finish on Saturday, January 26, after 77


Top 5 of 20 - Rankings as of Sunday, January 20, 2013, 20h00 (FR)
1. Francois Gabart (FRA), Macif: 1930.6 nm Distance to Finish
2. Armel Le Cleac'h (FRA), Banque Populaire: 141.8 nm Distance to Lead
3. Jean-Pierre Dick (FRA), Virbac Paprec 3: 508.5 nm DTL
4. Alex Thomson (GBR), Hugo Boss: 767.6 nm DTL
5. Jean Le Cam (FRA), SynerCiel: 2333.6 nm DTL
Full rankings:

BACKGROUND: Twenty skippers began the 24,000-nm Vendee Globe, a solo,
non-stop around the world race in the IMOCA Open 60 class. Starting in Les
Sables d'Olonne, France on November 10, the west to east course passes the
three major capes of Good Hope, Leeuwin and the Horn before returning to
Les Sables d'Olonne. Michel Desjoyeaux (FRA) set the course record of 84
days in the 2008-9 edition. --

* British solo sailor Alex Thomson has set a new national record for
sailing from the equator and back to the equator of 68d 14hr 53min. That is
nearly three weeks quicker than the old record set by Mike Golding. -- Read

Join JK3 in San Diego at the Sunroad Boat Show, January 24-27. JK3 will
proudly present NEW models from Sabre, Hanse, and J Boats, plus a pristine
2011 Back Cove 30. Come discover the sleek contemporary interiors of the
German-made Hanse 415 and 385. Also the much anticipated NEW trailerable
J/70; this new J/Boat hot rod introduces a new dimension of fun, fast
sailing. And don’t forget to step aboard the beautiful NEW Sabre 38 and 48
- a classic, elegant showcase of downeast craftsmanship; these yachts are a
must see! For more information or tickets, contact or

It all starts again. The Olympic quad. The four-year cycle that leads - for
a select few - to the Olympic Games. Symbolic of the beginning for North
American sailors will be the six-day ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami (Jan
28-Feb 2) - the second of four events on the 2012-13 ISAF Sailing World Cup
season. The season began in Melbourne, Australia (Dec 2-8) and will move
next to Palma Spain (Mar 30-Apr 6) and then Hyeres, France (Apr 20-27).

At the 2012 Games, Erik Storck and Trevor Moore represented the U.S. in the
49er skiff event, finishing in 15th position. Erik has no plans to train
for the 2016 Games, whereas Trevor will continue as a helm for his next
campaign. Here Erik comments on five factors for a successful campaign:
Funding, Performance, Organization, Team, and Conditioning.

Trevor and I worked nearly full-time for two years out of college to be
able to jumpstart our own campaign. By saving up almost all of our income
from coaching (I was able to live virtually rent-free on a 35' power boat),
we bought the first 49er we owned as a team. That boat qualified us for the
national team. From there, it's a lot easier to both retain team funding
and to fundraise. We developed our brand; we were a hard working,
dedicated, and talented young team. By presenting that brand to our donors
and by performing when it counted, we were able to increase our funding
year over year. In 2012, after qualifying for the Games, we had just about
wrapped up all of our fundraising by February, which allowed us to focus on
sailing. While we spent more time fundraising than our international
competitors, I do not consider that to have been a significant downfall of
our campaign.

Performance / Improvement / Technical Abilities
I've already mentioned the importance of regatta performance in funding. It
is important to see consistent results, but more important is to see
consistent improvement. Our first trip to Europe, while successful by some
standards, left room for marked improvement. We like to look at our three
World Championship results over three years; 39th, 24th, and 9th
consecutively. Young campaigners need to see that the Olympic quad is a
long road. It can seem daunting to overcome the many setbacks they are sure
to face. This is where you have to rely on your technical abilities, which
need to always be improving. There was questioning of the team's technical
expertise in some of the classes after the Games. Of course, there is
always room for improvement in these areas, most notably in today's
ultra-professional game. We were constantly improving. We were the best in
the world at some of the skill sets and technical abilities. We could have
been slightly better rounded, but we worked hard at making ourselves
Olympic-caliber 49er sailors.

Read on:

By Glenn McCarthy, Commodore, LMSRF
At one time, race management was very strict. Their communication mantra
was “Read the Flags” and that was their entire way of communicating to the
fleet. Radio broadcasts from the Race Committee were taboo.

Then, some race committees began experimenting with radio broadcasts,
calling the countdown to the starts, announcing the starting schedule,
explaining what any hold-ups were, where they are moving to and why, and
suddenly the racers were more confident about what the race committee was
doing. It was a marvelous step forward. Keep it going. Thank you race

A little tweaking in the Notices of Race were added to say that the Flags
and Sound Signals still ruled, and that the radio announcement could not be
redressed, even when something broadcast was misstated. That seemed
reasonable and fair.

Let’s look at what is being said on these broadcasts and compare it to any
NHL, NFL, MLB or any other “announcers,” as we already agree these are not
binding broadcasts, so let’s make them fun!

First off, kill the words “This is a courtesy broadcast of XYZ Yacht Club.”
The rules the Race Committees provide already explain to us that they are
courtesy broadcasts and it is unnecessary to remind us each time the mike
is keyed (written Sailing Instructions always take precedence over voice
communications). Next, add color commentators just like sporting on TV or
radio. How about this for a broadcast:

“Goooood morning race fans! We have B-E-A-Utiful day out here, the sun is
shining, the winds are predicted to be good and shifty. Today looks like
good sausage racing, 4 legs or 2 windward-leewards, and we’ll being running
bunches of them. Like you, we are keeping an eye out for a thermal to
develop, and right now we are scheduled to start on time. First up are the
bumper boats commonly called T-10s. Sail cleanly folks. You'll make your
day and the protest committee’s day a whole lot brighter.”

Does a broadcast like that seem to be more fun? More lighthearted? Did you
still understand what the Race Committee has planned for the day? Have you
ever flown Southwest Airlines and been humored by the mandatory safety
announcements? While the announcements are a serious safety check and they
get all the required passenger training in the announcements, they also
make them lighthearted and fun.

“This is how a seat belt latches, and if you’re too stupid to figure it
out, please exit the plane immediately.”

Come on Race Committees, turn the microphone over to someone with attitude
- great attitude! Make yourselves and the racers realize that we’re all
here for fun, camaraderie, more fun and a good time.

SOURCE: This commentary comes courtesy of the December newsletter of the
Lake Michigan Sail Racing Federation:

In this America's Cup era devoid of shielding curtains, and full of social
media imagery, all four teams have shown their hand. Before the Protocol
for the 34th America's Cup was published, no one had ever designed an AC72.
Now four teams have, and they have each tackled the problems differently.

Jack Griffin and his Cup Experience website have reviewed how each team has
approached the design requirements. Here are his comments:

"Aerodynamic and twisty"

"Stylish and solid"

"Sophisticated and unusual"

"Stable and fast"

Which teams have earned these comments? Here is the link to find out:

* (January 17, 2013) - After working with three different yacht clubs since
early last summer, trying to get a commitment for a host for the 2013 US
Nationals, the International Laser Class Association - North American
Region has no home for this regatta. While the regatta is supposed to go to
either district 7 or 9 for 2013, at this point organizers are open to any
place in the US. If you know of a club that might be able or interested in
hosting, please contact Sherri Campbell, class executive secretary, as soon
as possible. -- Details at:

* (January 20, 2013) - French round-the-world solo sailor Alain Delord has
been rescued by the Antarctic cruise ship PV Orion after drifting at sea
for three days. Delord set off a distress beacon on Friday after his yacht,
Tchouk Tchouk Nougaton was dismasted in bad weather 500 nm off Tasmania's
southwest coast. The jagged end of the rig then apparently holed the hull.
The 63-year-old abandoned ship and took to the Southern Ocean in his life
raft. His distress signal was picked up by the Australian Maritime Safety
Authority and the Orion. -- Full story:

* (January 20, 2013) - Organizers of the Extreme Sailing Series, OC Sport,
announced details of the eight-strong fleet for the 2013 Series at the
Dusseldorf Boat Show today. Marinepool, Official Clothing Partner to the
Series confirmed a new three-year extension to their contract with the
pioneering Stadium Sailing Series, which will see eight world-class teams,
including a ‘home nation’ invitational team at each venue, compete in the
seventh edition of the Series in 2013. -- Read on:

* CORRECTION: The article Virtual Marks (Scuttlebutt 3757) was incorrectly
attributed to IJ Ken Morrison. The author is Australian IJ, H.J. Elliott.

Rooster Sailing is a popular UK based sailing and leisure gear company and
they’ve expanded to the USA! Get ready for the 2013 midwinters season with
a full line of sailing gear designed for the most active sailor. From our
base layering systems to the Costal Jacket and Hi-Fits for outer
protection, to the stylish Crew Jacket, Rooster has you covered head to
toe. And our prices will leave you with some extra cash for cocktails after
racing! Check us out at: -
+1-513-445-5100 - SKYPE: roostersailingusa

Forespar Founder, Dr. Robert (Bob) Foresman, died at his home in San Juan
Capistrano, California, on December 30, 2012. Born in 1925 in Pasadena, Bob
was an Orthodontist by profession and served in the Navy's "V-12" program
as an officer in the Navy Dental Corps in WWII and Korea.

Bob's passion was sailing and the ocean. His desire to optimize his boat
led him to establish Forespar Products Corporation in 1965 where he
designed and marketed an unprecedented array of unique marine products. His
innovation and focus on quality products established Forespar as a
recognized leader in the marine industry for the past 45 years.

Events listed at

The Scuttlebutt website provides a portal for sailing businesses to
announce their personnel, product and service updates...for free! As a
bonus, each week the Scuttlebutt newsletter includes some of the recent
updates. Are you in the marine industry? Post your updates in the Industry
News section of the Forum.

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 Paul Erb:
After studying the Sailrocket diagram in Scuttlebutt 3757, I think there is
an error in the force vectors shown for the "below water" foil. The
resultant of the "side" and "lift" force vectors is parallel to the major
part of the foil surface. I don't think this is possible, since a foil
works fundamentally through a pressure difference, which results in a net
force normal to the surface -- as you see on the "wing sail" above.

In fact, I believe, the "below water" foil is acting both downward and
upwind, to hold Sailrocket down onto the surface and resist leeway and
overturning moment. This would fit with aligning the water and air foil
centers of pressure and eliminating heeling moment. What do you think?

It's a pity that they didn't show similar vectors on the "plan" view. I
think the moment balance (keeping her tracking down the course without
excessive corrective rudder) is an interesting thing to sketch in on that
view. The key to this moment balance may be how far aft the main foil is
from the sail... and also the "large" skeg they added to (presumably) keep
her aligned...

When the going gets tough, the smart get sneaky.

JK3 Nautical Enterprises - Dieball Sailing - North U - North Sails
Sail To Prevail - Southern Spars - APS - UK Sailmakers - Ullman Sails
New England Ropes - Storm Trysail Block Island Race Week

Need stuff? Look here: