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SCUTTLEBUTT 3653 - Monday, August 13, 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.

Weymouth and Portland, U.K. (August 11, 2012; Day 14) - The final two days
of the 2012 Olympic Sailing Regatta on Friday and Saturday completed the
Men's and Women's 470 Medal Race, and the Women's Match Racing Semi Finals
and Finals.

Light winds on Friday did little to thwart the excitement in the
doublehanded 470 events, with the top two teams in both Men's and Women's
events vying for gold, with neither able to earn less than silver. The
match race tactics in these fleet race events dictated the final podium

In the Men's event, Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page (AUS) lived up to their
billing as pre-event favourites, passing their nemesis Luke Patience and
Stuart Bithell (GBR) on the first run, and then staying ahead to take the
gold while the Brits settled for silver. "It was such a hair raising race
and to come to a medal race like that to decide a gold medal was
unbelievable," said Belcher.

Men's 470 Results - Top 5 of 27
1. Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page (AUS) - 22pts
2. Luke Patience and Stuart Bithell (GBR) - 30pts
3. Lucas Calabrese and Juan de la Fuente (ARG) - 63pts
4. Gabrio Zandona and Pietro Zucchetti (ITA) - 72pts
5. Paul Snow Hansen and Jason Saunders (NZL) - 86pts

In the Women's event, the race for gold among New Zealand's Jo Aleh and
Olivia Powrie and Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark (GBR) would be settled soon
after the start. After a pre-start tussle that gave the Brits the
advantage, the Kiwis found an exit lane on port tack while the Brits held a
lane to the left side of the course. But when a significant right shift
came through, the Kiwis took a lead they wouldn't relinquish. "The thing I
am most gutted about was that it wasn't a really good scrap for the gold,"
said Clark. "We got a really good start. They got out and we got wedged

Women's 470 Results - Top 5 of 20
1. Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie (NZL) - 35pts
2. Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark (GBR) - 51pts
3. Lisa Westerhof and Lobke Berkhout (NED) - 64pts
4. Camille Lecointre and Mathilde Geron (FRA) - 65pts
5. Giulia Conti and Giovanna Micol (ITA) - 73pts

Winds soon decreased on Friday for the Women's Match Race Semi-Finals,
which reduced the best of five series to a best of three. Olivia Price
(AUS) and Tamara Echegoyen (ESP) advanced to the Finals after their
respective matches against Silja Lehtinen (FIN) and Ekaterina Skudina
(RUS). A protest by the Russian team concerning the expedited series would
later be disallowed.

In an exciting finale on Saturday, Spain's Tamara Echegoyen overcame Olivia
Price (AUS) 3-2 to take gold. Winds of up to 25 knots blew across the
course, which led to the Aussie skipper getting flung into the water in the
third race for a loss. With the scores level heading into the final race,
it would be a penalty turn for Price that proved to be the deciding factor.

"We are very happy, it's a dream," Pumariega said. "We never imagined we
would win the gold medal. We were not the favourites. When we crossed the
line we didn't believe it." The Spanish team had finished no better than
12th in both the 2011 and 2012 World Championships.

In the Petit Final, 2012 ISAF Women's Match Racing World Champion Lehtinen
beat Skudina 3-1 to take the bronze medal.

NORTH AMERICA: The 27-boat Men's 470 event concluded with Stuart McNay/
Graham Biehl (USA) in 14th and Luke Ramsay/ Michael Leigh (CAN) in 25th,
while the 20-boat Women's 470 event saw Amanda Clark/ Sarah Lihan (USA)
finish in 9th. As reported in Scuttlebutt 3652, Americans Anna Tunnicliffe/
Debbie Capozzi/ Molly Vandemoer were fifth in the Women's Match Race event.

NEXT UP: The Paralympic Games begin September 1st for three events -
Single-Person Keelboat (2.4mR), Two-Person Keelboat (SKUD18), and
Three-Person Keelboat (Sonar). -

ISAF news:

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Fifteen countries medaled in the ten sailing events at the 2012 Games.

Great Britain: 1 Gold, 4 Silver, 0 Bronze; 5 Total
Australia: 3 Gold, 1 Silver, 0 Bronze; 4 Total
Netherlands: 1 Gold, 1 Silver, 1 Bronze; 3 Total
Spain: 2 Gold, 0 Silver, 0 Bronze; 2 Total
New Zealand: 1 Gold, 1 Silver, 0 Bronze; 2 Total
Sweden: 1 Gold, 0 Silver, 1 Bronze; 2 Total
Denmark: 0 Gold, 1 Silver, 1 Bronze; 2 Total
Finland: 0 Gold, 1 Silver, 1 Bronze; 2 Total
Poland: 0 Gold, 0 Silver, 2 Bronze; 2 Total
China: 1 Gold, 0 Silver, 0 Bronze; 1 Total
Cyprus: 0 Gold, 1 Silver, 0 Bronze; 1 Total
Argentina: 0 Gold, 0 Silver, 1 Bronze; 1 Total
Belgium: 0 Gold, 0 Silver, 1 Bronze; 1 Total
Brazil: 0 Gold, 0 Silver, 1 Bronze; 1 Total
France: 0 Gold, 0 Silver, 1 Bronze; 1 Total
Medal tally:

By Bomani Jones, NY Times
After seeing the majestic diversity of the Olympics' Parade of Nations, a
visual representation of the best of the Olympic ideal, the last thing I
want to watch is a sport where the biggest determinant of success is being
rich. I could ask for many sports to be removed on this basis, but I'll go
with sailing because ... well, who wants to watch boats that don't make
lots of noise?

O.K., I can do better -- what does sailing embody that anyone loves,
specifically, about the Olympics? Where is the simplicity of the event that
gives the impression that anyone could participate?

You need to be of a certain class with special access to sail. In an event
that celebrates inclusion, it is the most exclusive. Even with sports like
swimming and rowing, which cost too much for many, anyone could,
theoretically, participate. There's nothing stopping someone from doing
backflips and the other staples of gymnastics.

Sailing? The name of the game is access. The touching human interest
stories that buoy NBC's ratings for the Olympics are somewhere between rare
and nonexistent. It's clearly an activity for a particular class stratus
and, given how overwhelmingly white the Olympic participants are, it's
clearly not the world's game.

If the Olympics is going to wrap itself in touchy-feely stories, it's hard
to get behind sports that are so obviously exclusive. If the Games are
supposed to bring the world together, we can do without sports that do the
opposite. --

EDITOR'S NOTE: If you care to disagree with Bomani Jones, you can find him
at, where he writes and stars in a YouTube show called "Bomani
& Jones." He's also a regular contributor to ESPN's "Around The Horn."
Bomani's Twitter account is @bomani_jones

The inclusion of Women's Match Racing as an event of the 2012 Olympic Games
led to significant growth among participants and events. However, with the
decision by the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) to discontinue the
event for the 2016 Games, the fallout has been equally significant. Case in
point is the Grade 1 Santa Maria Cup Women's Match Racing Championship.

Hosted every year since 1991 when JJ Isler won the first event, sailing
icons including Americans Dawn Riley, Betsy Alison, Liz Baylis, Sally
Barkow and 2012 Olympians Claire Leroy (France) and Team Maclaren/Anna
Tunnicliffe (USA) have held the Santa Maria Cup title. But the trickle
effect of ISAF's decision has forced the Santa Maria Cup to cancel the 2012
edition. Regatta Chairperson Susan Nahmias explains:

"Santa Maria Cup has been a grade 1 event for 21 years, and even if we
could have secured sufficient competitors to drop a ranking, that would
compromise the event's reputation. We have no intention of stopping SMC, in
fact we have received widespread interest in Santa Maria Cup 2013. Should
that fail to materialize, Eastport Yacht Club will look to create a new and
different match racing event with a new name.

"Once the announcement was made that WMR would NOT be in the 2016 Olympics,
some skippers decided 2012 was time to have a family, while others were
pushed to other sailing classes in preparation for the 2016 Rio Olympics,
and still others decided that with the world economic issues that their
careers had to come first. Even some of the 2012 Olympians are facing the
same realities.

"We had hoped to overcome these challenges, but it has become apparent that
September 2012 is too soon after the Olympics to secure enough high-ranking
competitors to remain a Grade 1 event this year. Thus, like so many other
outstanding Women's Match Racing events worldwide, Santa Maria Cup 2012 has
been cancelled and we will begin planning Santa Maria Cup 2013."

Event website:

Could this be where they are? Do we find our Olympic sailors of the future
in the Sabot, the Opti, the CISA Advanced Racing Clinic? Maybe. Great
American sailors are here, we know where they are. Their talent and
character are on display. Check their heartbeat, monitor their desire,
stoke the fire and support them like America knows how. Kaenon Polarized
congratulates Jr. Sabot Nationals winner Max Brill wearing Kaenon's Arlo,
runner-up Jacob Rosenberg wearing Burnet, and 3rd place finisher Sawyer
Gibbs wearing Klay.
Kaenon Polarized. Evolve Optically.
Proud supporter of America's Youth (movement). And our sailors in Weymouth!
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Over 100 J/24 teams are breathlessly anticipating the start of the first
"open" J/24 Worlds in decades. With racing on September 17-21, a strong
American contingent will be doing battle against a cadre of past World,
European, North American, South American, Canadian, Bermudian, Brazilian,
Argentinean, Chilean, Peruvian and Japanese Champions.

Hosted by the Rochester Yacht Club in Rochester, NY, located on the south
shore of Lake Ontario, the teams are anticipating how best to get out of
the starting blocks with over 100 boats on one huge line with multiple line
boats calling the start and keeping the aggressive teams in check.

On the American side of the equation, the "open" registrants has encouraged
a lot of the "old guard" from past J/24 wars to jump into the fray and test
how far the world of J/24 sailing has progressed over the course of time.
Additionally, it has also encouraged a number of young, college-experienced
sailing teams to jump in with minimal budgets and determine whether they're
competitive at a global level. -- Read on:

* Shoreacres, TX (August 10, 2012) - Three races were completed today to
finish the 10 race Lightning North American Championship. More than half
the 55-boat fleet sailed with two or more family members aboard, with
winner Jody Lutz leading the way with his son Jonathan and brother Jay. --
Full report:

* San Francisco, CA (August 10, 2012) - The three day 2012 Chubb U.S.
Junior Championships concluded with Addison Hackstaff (Byte CII) and
Christopher Ford/Daniel Ron (Club 420) maintaining their lock on the lead,
while locals Jack Barton/ Sam Barton/ Sammy Shea/ Corey Lynch (J/22) took
the title on the final day. Full report:

* Long Beach, CA (August 10, 2012) - The Junior Naples Sabot National
Championship was hosted by Alamitos Bay Yacht Club, with 150 sailors
competing in the finals held just off the club's docks. Grabbing the lead
early was Max Brill (Mission Bay Yacht Club), who went on to win over Jacob
Rosenberg (Alamitos Bay Yacht Club) in second and Sawyer Gibbs (Alamitos
Bay Yacht Club) in third. Full results:

* The World Championship of International Moth Class will set new records
in 2012 as 119 entries from 20 countries and 4 continents descend on Lake
Garda in Italy. The event will take place in the waters of the Vela Club
Campione on August 20-26. -- Full report:

* CORRECTION: Jerry Moulton pointed out that the Nantucket Race Week report
in Scuttlebutt 3652 had downgraded John Kerry from U.S. Senator to State
Senator. Though he did get DFL in the 2011 event, he did not lose his rank
in the U.S. government

Events listed at

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 Mark Johnson:
The VIDEO OF THE WEEK (Scuttlebutt 3652) is about the best sailing video I
have ever seen! What fun! I can only imagine if we had just a few
broadcasters and color commentators who had a sense of humor, we'd all
enjoy the sports a good bit more. Sure it was done "tongue in cheek" with a
total irreverence for the sailors and race crews, but it did hit very close
to the mark regarding the craziness and the challenges in understanding our
sport. I love Gary Jobson and all he has done to raise the visibility and
stature of our sport, but these guys could be my sailing commentators for
quite awhile. What fun! Link:

* From Richard Burling:
In Scuttlebutt 3652, Debi Schoenherr defends the U.S. Olympic results by
noting the high ISAF rankings that most of the Americans had. However, it
should be noted that the ISAF rankings and the World Cup rankings are more
of an indication of how many regatta a sailor does - the system needs an

EDITOR'S NOTE: The World Cup system does benefit those that attend all the
events, while the ISAF system averages a sailor's performance over a two
year period. Neither of these systems achieves its goal of accurate
ranking, which is why a newly merged system is to be released this fall
that will (hopefully) offer a more 'real time' assessment of one's ability.

* From John Standley:
I cannot let John Morgan's letter (Scuttlebutt 3652) pass without comment.
I note that he is careful not to say that the 49er the Australians used in
the Olympics had measurement issues, but why write a letter like this
unless he is trying to imply exactly that?

If Nathan and Iain had something to hide, why would they let other people
borrow their boats and equipment? The Kiwis have clearly benefitted by
working with them over the past years and they should be gratefully for

Also, there are strict measurement processes at all World Championships and
at the Olympics, and the correct time to raise these issues is at that time
when measurement protests should be made if there are any concerns. Why was
a protest not made in the proper manner?

Before John comes back, yes, I do know the chief 49er measurer is an
Australian, but I would be extremely cautious before implying he or any
other measurer was involved in any skulduggery. John, just accept you have
been out sailed by a couple of brilliant sailors, and get on with your job
of coaching your Kiwi team to be better.

EDITOR'S NOTE: John Morgan wanted it to be known that he wasn't commenting
on the legality of the Australian boats, but was rather commenting on the
one design nature, or lack of it, in the 49er class. These apparent
irregularities have been tightened up in the rules. He apologizes for any
misunderstanding. Commentary published in Scuttlebutt last week has
prompted the Australian and New Zealand sailing federations to make this
joint statement:
Btw, this thread is now dead.

* From Jan Visser, Olympia, WA:
As I have read over the past few days the various comments regarding
Olympic wins or lack thereof, I have given some long careful thought to how
our sailors get there. Sailing is expensive, there is no doubt about it,
and if the US could support its athletes, I am sure the outcomes would be
very different.

Living in the Northwest with Canadian neighbors and friends in the sailing
world, we have the opportunity to see young men and women excel in the
sport. In the run up to 2012, I was able to see very good sailors take a
long hard look at the expense and just say no.

Athletes in other sports seem to express the same thoughts. News reports
tell of families with financial hardships (gymnast Gabby Douglass, swimmer
Ryan Lochte, etc), and these are the stories of many medalists; those who
do not make it to the podium are not heard from. It is a sad day when we
spend more on war than on some of the best the U.S. has to present to the
world in the competition of the Games.

* From Craig Fletcher:
I strongly disagree with Peter Commette in Scuttlebutt 3652, who said the
failure of the US Team "belongs to those who put in the sacrifice: Dean
Brenner, Kenneth Andreasen, our other coaches, our sailors, the ones our
sailors beat to get there, and all of their families. It was their effort.
Their sacrifice. Not ours."

As Americans we all have a stake in the United States of America's sailing
them! We should all be questioning and looking for solutions to our
countries poor Olympic results. We cannot be reminded often enough "THERE

COMMENT: While it remains the athlete that succeeds or fails, their
performance is a result of the environment wherein their talent as a sailor
was developed. So in a way, all Americans are connected to the performance
of the U.S. team. Now, the Olympics are not the end all, but for those
seeking to represent the U.S. in the future, a new paradigm must be
launched which takes a closer look at the skills needed to succeed, with an
initiative to gather those skills sooner rather than later. It's not time
to work harder. It's time to work smarter. - Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt

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