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SCUTTLEBUTT 3614 - Monday, June 18, 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: New England Boatworks and Kaenon Polarized.

As is often the case when controversial subjects are broached in
Scuttlebutt, we often hear from one side of the debate. Essentially, people
that like the status quo typically remain silent, hoping the conversation
dies before change begins. That was the case last week for the topic of
spouse status in yacht clubs.

Here is a report by Connie and Rick Bischoff, members of Coral Reef Yacht
Club in Miami, concerning the recent experience their club had with this
In order for yacht clubs to continue to operate successfully, many people
believe (us included) clubs need to insure for themselves a sufficiently
broad pool of talented and committed members who love boating and sailing
and who want (and be eligible) to serve in leadership positions on all
committees, on the Board of Directors and on the Flag. By restricting the
right to serve to only one person in each couple, the clubs are depriving
themselves of a great source of energy and skills.

One couple... one vote... two active volunteers... sounds like a "no
brainer" to us. Surely not having spousal membership policies will hamper
attracting new membership couples who both sail. It also seems to us that
young couples who are both professionals (as many are today) will

Last year at our club in South Florida, some directors were wracking their
brains seeking ways to enhance the number of prospects for membership. As
was the case in yacht clubs throughout the country, membership rolls had
declined and young prospects seemed harder and harder to entice into

When we were asked to put our thoughts into solutions, we suggested, among
other ideas, to consider the implementation of spousal membership policies,
as we understood that they had had some success elsewhere in gaining young
members. As sometimes happens when one innocently makes a suggestion, it
follows that they are implored to expand on the theme.

Thus, a number of folks sought out the experiences of other clubs who
reportedly had positive results of policies relating to membership
arrangements where both spouses can be committee members, committee chairs,
members of the Board of Directors, flag officers and yes both can represent
the Club as race entrants; in short "spousal memberships."

We relate our findings with some misgivings as the representations about
what other clubs may have done was not "officially" verified and thus their
results may be seen as successful to differing degrees depending upon what
member one might talk to.

Our group found five examples of spousal membership policies at the
following five clubs:

(June 17, 2012) - After the start of 164 boats in the 635nm Newport Bermuda
Race on Friday, six boats had finished as of 1800 Sunday, each of them
breaking an elapsed time course record.

First to finish was the 90-foot Reichel/Pugh Rambler owned by George David
(Hartford, Conn.), averaging 16.06 knots down the course in a time of 39
hours, 39 minutes, 18 seconds to break two records. She clipped 9 hours off
the course record set in 2004 for Open Division boats by Morning Glory
(which averaged 13.06 knots), and 14 hours off the record for Lighthouse
Division (professionally-crewed) boats set by Roy Disney's Pyewacket in
2003 (averaging 11.8 knots).

The early finishers described high-speed, rough, wet conditions on the
long, fast reach in the fresh northeast wind that prevailed from start to
finish. A series of rain squalls welcomed the lead boats near the finish,
with gusts up to 50 knots winds that pushed the boat to over 20 knots off
St. Davids Head.

Four boats are reported to have retired. James Muldoon's Andrews 80
Donnybrooks found a serious leak after the start, while the Swan 68
Cannonball owned by Charles A. Robertson was 40 miles from the starting
line when the spinnaker halyard block aloft broke and the halyard cut into
the boats carbon fibre mast for 30 feet. The Ker 11.3 Oakcliff Racing
withdrew due to a broken rudder. The cause for Meanie a R/P 52 owned by
Thomas Akin, was not known. -- Full story:

The Newport Bermuda Race is on and NEB is well represented. Our latest
build Belle Mente and refits and mods to over 25 other racing yachts is
clear evidence that NEB is the preferred yard for knowledgeable owners and
captains. From bottom jobs, keel and rudder upgrades, interior and deck
modifications, system checks by our pros to major refits and new builds,
NEB is THE New England yard to service your yacht or build your next dream.

PUMA Ocean Racing continues her impressive performance: tough, strong, and
built by New England Boatworks! GO PUMA! Contact NEB today at 401-683-4000,

(July 15, 2012) - Groupama's win on Friday in Leg 8 of the Volvo Ocean
Race, after overcoming treacherous North Atlantic conditions from Lisbon,
leaves skipper Franck Cammas on the verge of following Lionel Pean - in
1985 - as France's only winner of the 39-year Volvo Ocean Race event.

In assessing Puma's chances of an overall win, after finishing third,
skipper Ken Read said: "So where do we go from here? Despite being less
than pleased we have moved into second overall for the race, but we have
lost valuable points to the race leader Groupama.

"Time is of the essence. We have to start gaining ground now, and the
in-port Race in Lorient becomes that much more critical. I hope I'm wrong
but I have a feeling we've seen the opportunity to win this race slipping

Telefonica's hopes of keeping the pressure up on Groupama were ruined as
the Spanish team broke both rudders plus their spare and drifted from first
to second last on the 1,940-nautical leg from Portugal.

As Read said, the in-port race in Lorient will be pivotal for Puma, with
just two further chances to accrue points remaining in Galway at the
beginning of July.

"I don't want to say it's a race for second place yet, but I have to give
them credit," added Read. "They've continued to get better and that's what
this race demands. They struggled in the beginning. But they keep getting
better. Good for them, bad for us.

"It's bitter sweet. We didn't sail our best leg to be honest, and it's at
the wrong time. We made some mistakes. We kept it close like we always do,
and usually when we keep it close we thrive in that situation." -- The

GOING DOWN: Telefonica had led the overall rankings since the finish of Leg
1 in Cape Town, and held the lead until they dropped to second after Leg 7
in Lisbon. But rudder problems in Leg 8 now has them in fourth overall.
Trouble first struck Telefonica on Thursday afternoon when the team broke
their starboard rudder in 25 knots of wind, losing 11 nautical miles on the
fleet and dropping from first to fourth. But they surged back to reclaim
the lead within hours, only to break the replacement rudder broke and
damage the port rudder on the final gybe to Lorient. They limped in,
dropping from first to fifth position. --

BUOY KING: Consistent may not be sexy, but it has elevated PUMA to be the
leader of the In-Port Series. They've yet to win any of the eight buoy
races, but they have been on the podium for all but one of them. PUMA holds
a one point lead over Camper with two more In-Port races remaining.

SCHEDULE: Competition resumes again on 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:

Leg 8 - Final Results
Lisbon, Portugal to Lorient, France (1,940 nm)
1. Groupama 4 (FRA), Frank Cammas (FRA), Friday, 004d 23h 31m 02s
2. CAMPER (NZL), Chris Nicholson (AUS), Friday, 005d 00h 30m 09s
3. PUMA Ocean Racing (USA), Ken Read (USA), Friday, 005d 00h 43m 04s
4. Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing (UAE), Ian Walker (GBR), Friday, 005d 02h 17m 25s
5. Telefonica (ESP), Iker Martinez (ESP), Friday, 005d 08h 40m 26s
6. Team Sanya (CHN), Mike Sanderson (NZL), Friday, 005d 08h 59m 41s

Overall Standings (after Leg 8)
1. Groupama 4 (FRA), Frank Cammas (FRA), 219 pts
2. PUMA Ocean Racing (USA), Ken Read (USA), 196
3. CAMPER (NZL), Chris Nicholson (AUS), 191
4. Telefonica (ESP), Iker Martinez (ESP), 191
5. Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing (UAE), Ian Walker (GBR), 122
6. Team Sanya (CHN), Mike Sanderson (NZL), 39

Video reports:

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. -

"I just want to integrate a sport that really needs some integration,"
Charles Kithcart said with more than a twinge of frustration in his voice.

Kithcart is the founder of African Diaspora Maritime, a North
Carolina-based organization dedicated to getting more African Americans
involved in yacht racing, a sport that tends to be cultural shorthand for
"wealthy and white." His dream is to build a multicultural team of sailors
to compete in the world's premier sailing competition, the America's Cup.

But the group hosting the competition, the Golden Gate Yacht Club, isn't
allowing ADM to compete against Oracle Racing, billionaire Larry Ellison's
team, for the right to represent the United States when the event comes to
the San Francisco Bay next summer.

"We want to compete. We want to participate," said Kithcart, who has
submitted the $25,000 entrance fee to the GGYC and lined up legendary yacht
designer Dave Pedrick to create his boat. "We don't want to be excluded.
There's a history of exclusion of African Americans in this country, and it
doesn't look good when a team of African Americans is excluded from
something like this."

Kithcart is suing the GGYC, demanding to be allowed in. The case will soon
be heard before the New York Supreme Court, which has historically ruled on
legal issues related to the America's Cup.

GGYC rejected ADM's bid to participate, according to the complaint, because
the club was concerned that ADM "lacked the financial wherewithal to
compete." However, ADM charges that bids by other teams in similar
financial situations were accepted and, in the months since rejecting ADM's
bid, GGYC has lowered the funding requirements for competing teams from $4
million down to $325,000.

When GGYC was awarded the America's Cup in 2010, it did so as a "trustee
for the benefit of all potential challengers." ADM argues that, by not
giving his organization a fair shake, the club has breached the terms under
which it was allowed to host the event.

Representatives from the GGYC, on the other hand, claim they have done
nothing wrong. "The suit is totally and utterly without merit," said Tom
Ehman, GGYC's Vice Commodore. "At best it's a PR stunt, and at worst it's
holding us up for money."

Ehman explained that ADM's application made it clear that the team simply
didn't have the resources to make such an enormous commitment. "We're under
no obligation to accept multiple teams," he said, noting the club refunded
ADM's entrance fee after rejecting its application. "It's a huge
distraction when teams compete without the proper preparation, only to get
immediately walked all over." -- Huffington Post, read on:

Events listed at

* Seattle, WA (June 17, 2012) - After light conditions on Friday cancelled
racing on the opening day of the Melges 24 U.S. National Championship, the
36-boat fleet rolled through eight races in the series hosted by the
Seattle Yacht Club. Leading from the opening race Harry Melges and his
Zenda Express team dominated the series, only finishing out of the top two
once to beat out second place Alan Field by 12 points. -- Full results:

* The Great Texas Catamaran Race, a 300nm offshore beach catamaran race
along the Texas Coast, held its four stage event for 10 teams on June
13-16. John Casey and Dalton Tebo, sailing an F-18 (Cirrus R), were second
in both of the first two stages, and then closed strong with bullets in the
final two legs to take the title. In second was John Tomko and Ian Billings
sailing an F-18 (C2). -- Event website:

* Dartmouth, England (June 15, 2012) - With two races remaining on the
final day of the J/80 World Championship, it was all to play for as leader
Jose Maria van der Ploeg (ESP) held only a five point lead over 2010 champ
Rayco Tabares of the Canary Islands. But winds over 30 knots with 4 meter
seas kept the 76 competing teams at the dock as racing was cancelled and
the results were deemed final. -- Event website:

* La Playa, Mexico (June 15, 2012) - A California man's 12-year quest to
sail around the world was ended prematurely by a whale that damaged his
boat off the coast of Mexico, his wife said. Debra Young said her husband,
Max, 67, set out on his sailing adventure when he retired in 2000 and the
voyage, which was periodically interrupted when he had to return to work,
came to an end Wednesday when a whale destroyed the rudder and punched a
hole in his 50-foot, single-mast sailboat off the coast of La Playa,
Mexico, the Sacramento (Calif.) Bee reported Friday. Read more:

* Porto Cervo, Italy (June 17, 2012) - Ed Baird and the Quantum Racing Team
(USA) put their renowned match race skills to best effect when they all but
closed out regatta leaders Audi Azzurra Sailing Team (ITA) on the start
line of the final race of the Audi Sardinia Cup, elevating the Americans to
win the second consecutive event of the 52 Super Series. Six teams were
competing in the event, which has replaced the MedCup Circuit. -- Full

* Big or small, one-design or speed-rated handicaps, around the buoys or
offshore, the best of the West will be tested on Friday through Sunday in
Ullman Sails Long Beach Race Week. With total entries approaching 150 in a
dozen or more classes, the annual event is the West Coast's largest
keelboat regatta, co-hosted and organized by the Alamitos Bay and Long
Beach Yacht Clubs. -- Read on:

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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 the Forum (brsailown):
(In regard to American Yacht Club's first annual Women's Invitational Team
Race Regatta believed to be the first all-women's Team Race in the U.S.),
just wanted to point out that Amanda Callahan has been hosting the Chix
Only team race around the Northeast since 2004. Check it out at

* From Ted Jones:
It was asked last week where Sopranino was. I am here to say that I know
where she is.

Sopranino was found abandoned in a vacant lot on Long Island, NY in the
1970s, about to be bulldozed to clear the land for development. Something
about the boat spoke to the contractor who guessed that she might be
special. He was right, of course, and his inquiries led to Tom Benson, then
curator of the Museum of Yachting, in Newport, RI., and Sopranino was
rescued. The boat was filthy, but essentially complete. Benson wanted to
display her in her "as found" condition, and she was stored in a back room
while the museum's directors decided how to proceed. Most wanted her
restored. I had the special privilege of sitting in her unrestored cockpit,
imagining what it must have been like for Patrick Ellam and Colin Mudie,
sitting where I sat, as they crossed the Atlantic ocean in this tiny

Fast forward 30 years. Tom Benson had died, and Sopranino had been moved
into an obscure storage vault at Fort Adams State Park, where the museum is
located. An inquiry from the Junior Offshore Group (JOG) in England led to
negotiations with the museum which culminated in Sopranino being
transferred to the JOG, and shipped to the UK where she was painstakingly
restored to her original sailing condition. I believe she has now been
retired from active racing with the JOG, but Patrick Ellam and Colin Mudie,
who sailed her transatlantic in 1952 were recently reunited with Sopranino
by special invitation of the JOG members to celebrate her 60th anniversary.

* From Neil W. Humphrey:
Please pass this along as what the Canadian government is doing - which is
to close the courty's busiest Coast Guard Station located in Vancouver, BC
- will impact any vessel coming into the our area. Any support you can send
our way would be greatly appreciated. Here is a list of information and
contact information:

The Scuttlebutt website allows marine companies to post their personnel,
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My wife and I had words, but I didn't get to use mine.

New England Boatworks - Kaenon Polarized - North Sails - Gowrie Group
SailFast - Mount Gay Rum - Point Loma Outfitting - Gladstone's Long Beach
Southern Spars - Ullman Sails - Hall Spars & Rigging - Doyle Sailmakers

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