“Talking Sailing” by Richard Crockett – issue 35

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issue – 35
20 October 2015

by Richard Crockett
Publisher & Editor of SAILING Magazine

There is so much good news in our sport locally which indicates that this summer may well be a bumper one for local sailing.

And with it comes news of international participation by our local sailors, and lots more

The absolute idiots who broke into and robbed an NSRI storage facility is sickening and an indictment on just how low the morals of society have dropped. And what happened to one’s moral compass?

Enjoy this issue as we Talk About…
•  RSA 470 Crack the Nod for Rio 2016
•  ISAF World Rankings
•  ISAF Sailing World Cup Final
•  NSRI Burgled!
•  Lance Burger on Rio 2016 Olympic Jury
•  Capsized Cat
•  Bart’s Bash – South African Competitors Did Us Proud
•  BOTY Awards
•  Mariquita – Remember Her?
•  The Humble Bucket
•  An Ocean Racing Upturn – Phillippa to Compete
•  SAILING Magazine Cover – October 2015 issue
•  Blokart Provides Momentum for America’s Cup Endeavour Community Sailing Program
•  South of 50 Voyage
•  Safety for Cruising Couples
•  WADA publishes 2016 Prohibited List
• Sailing Humour – BOAT
• How True! This Simply Needs to Be Said!
• I Like This!
• A Lasting Gift – A Subscription to Sailing Magazine
• Sailor of the Month – Submit Your Nomination Now
• Some Selected Responses to “Talking Sailing”

RSA 470 Crack the Nod for Rio 2016
Last week was an incredibly tense time for many as our RSA 470 team competed in the 470 Worlds on Haifa Bay, Israel – in ‘last chance saloon’ territory as SASCOC has made it clear that they are unlikely to select any athlete for Rio who has not qualified through international competition, with regional qualification through Africa not an option.

As a result, there were just 6 slots left in the 470s, so Asenathi Jim and Roger Hudson simply had to secure one of those to get to Rio next year. They did it, being the 5th qualifier – which was as much a relief for them as it was for their many supporters.

Now, their performance needs to be put into perspective.

The 470 is one of the toughest classes on the international circuit. With 60 boats at the Worlds, our guys finished 21st – a really good result.

Asenathi and Roger are anything but complacent, and to them they would have been very unhappy with this result as at times they were in the hunt in single figures, and dropped away and out of contention. This does not make them bad sailors, especially as they are very analytical, and will have already worked out the reasons.

The 470 hull does not have a good lifespan, with top teams renewing hulls as often as annually or more frequently. Our guys, due to limited funding, were using a 3-year old hull, yet they were in the top one-third of a very hot fleet. That’s a sure-fire indication that they have the credentials to compete at the head of this fleet.

Now that they have qualified, they have ordered a new hull – so their finishing positions should improve quite dramatically from now.

This is a ‘no excuses’ team – as never have I heard them make excuses, nor have I ever heard them lay the blame anywhere but on their own shoulders. A refreshing change from some sportsmen who have an excuse for everything.

One must also not forget that it was only five years ago that Asenathi Jim competed in his first international event in the 420 Class, the 2010 420 Worlds raced on the same waters of Haifa Bay, finishing 5th overall – a memory not lost on him.

“Its been pretty amazing to come back here after 5 years. Back then we made the gold fleet against all the best guys in the world. We were the outsiders who came in having got an invite from the International 420 Class, which was a great opportunity for us. Today we are standing here again and to have finished as fifth country to qualify. I love this place and I have loved my second World Championships here” said Hudson.

Hudson added, “The pressure was immense on all the teams that were trying to qualify and you could feel that in all the racing. The conditions here in Haifa are really shifty and really on and off pressure which made the racing extremely challenging. In the end it was an interesting game and there was a great contest. What this means with us qualifying here is that the African continental place remains open for the Rio 2016 Olympics, which means a second African country will qualify and go to the Games. In January 2016 the 470 African Championships will be a great celebration of the 470’s success as a truly international class and growing enthusiasm in Africa. We sailed not just for South Africa, but for our continent today.”

This is a team that will go places, and will undoubtedly do us proud in Rio. Well done guys.

As an aside, the daily updates of their progress I posted on SAILING Gybeset (www.sailing.co.za/gybeset) and shared with the SAILING Gybeset and SAILING Magazine Facebook pages, received the most number of hits ever – a clear indication of the following and support they have.

ISAF World Rankings
In the last few days ISAF released the latest World Rankings.
470 men    Asenathi Jim & Roger Hudson               25
49er            Graeme Willcox & Andrew Tarboton    73
Laser          Stefano Marcia                                           77

ISAF Sailing World Cup Final
Abu Dhabi is stepping back into the limelight as a top international sailing venue later this month when more than 150 competitors from 39 countries descend on the UAE capital for the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final.

The only South Africans competing will be Asenathi Jim and Roger Hudson. Regrettably not in their new boat, but in one being provided by the regatta organisers.

The five-day regatta, takes place from October 28 to November 1. It is a world-class annual series for Olympic sailing and is only open to the sailing events chosen for the 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition.

NSRI Burgled!
The NSRI have a store in Maitland in a secure office park with electric fencing and manned 24-hour security.

Yet last week they were called by the on-site security as the alarm had been activated. Guards had immediately checked all windows and doors and found no sign of any attempted entry.

NSRI personnel arrived to investigate and found on the far corner of the building, which has no windows and is essentially on the outside of the security complex, access had been gained through the double bricked wall, at knee height, broken through most likely with the use of a sledgehammer. The store has been ransacked.

Medical supplies, splints, spinal trauma boards, boxes of branded NSRI uniforms, drums of oil, tools and boat propellers were amongst some items stolen.

It is sad that in this country organisations that do excellent volunteer work for ALL communities are the targets of thieves.

Incidently, the RNLI in the UK received a massive £8 million-plus legacy after being left two rare Ferraris. These were auctioned and realised that handsome amount.

Please give generously to the NSRI – remember you are NOT a survivor until rescued.

Lance Burger on Rio 2016 Olympic Jury
ISAF has announced the names of the ISAF Race Officials who will be officiating in the Rio 2016 Olympics.

Interestingly, and well deserved too, Lance Burger has been appointed to the International Jury for that event.

Headed by ISAF Technical Delegates Alastair Fox and Scott Perry, the team of international technical officials will be present throughout the Olympic Sailing Competition ensuring the fairness of the competition and a level playing field for the 380 sailors to compete on.

The race management team will be headed by Nino Shmueli (ISR), ISAF’s Principal Race Officer at the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships and recently at the ISAF Sailing World Cup in Qingdao. The International Jury will be chaired by Bernard Bonneau (FRA) who recently finished chairing the 2014 – 2015 Volvo Ocean Race and was the Vice-Chairman of the Olympic Jury at London 2012. Dimitris Dimou (GRE), the 470 Class Chief Measurer, will head up the ISAF equipment inspection team.

The selections bring to an end over two years of assessments and monitoring which included the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships in Santander and the Test Events for the 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition.

The final team, coming from 35 different countries and all continents, will now begin the final preparations for the Olympic Sailing Competition in close co-operation with the Rio 2016 organisers and the team of Brazilian national technical officials and volunteers.

Capsized Cat
Just days ago the NSRI announced that it had gone to assist a catamaran upside down off the notorious Wild Coast. Its EPIRB had been activated and the signal received by the MRCC in Cape Town.

There are questions which need to be clarified as, in the prevailing condition of 50-plus knots South Westerly winds, why was the cat so far out and in completely the wrong place for the conditions. The rule of thumb on this stretch is to come in as close to the beach as possible to avoid the big seas that can be created when the South Wester pushes again the south flowing Agulhas Current.

Also, how did the cat capsize? Did it succumb to a rogue wave, or was it running off and pitch-poled on a particularly steep wave?

Finally, why did the two-man crew take to the liferaft? The upturned hull was afloat and a far bigger target for Search & Rescue than a liferaft?

We will all learn from the answers to these questions.

Bart’s Bash – South African Competitors Did Us Proud
Local sailors did well this year, with results at the top of many categories.

The results summary is interesting:
Venues                       273
Boats                          7270
Distance sailed        37,344,550 m
Time                          468.75 Days
Average Speed        1.49681 m/s

The Weymouth & Portsmith National Sailing Academy had the largest group of 193 boats with the Point Yacht Club in 8th spot (and the first non-British/International Club) with 123 boats.

The largest class was the Laser (Standard) with 776 boats with the Optimist dinghy second with 407 boats.

Top 10 sailors overall – all RSA sailors unless indicated
1 Alex Schon
5 Ewald Erasmus
7 Andre Holloway

Buoy Race (RSA took all top 10 spots)
1 Douglas White
2 Dylan Van Staden
3 Robbie Grech
4 Debra Hart
5 Herman Schutte
6 Mike Boman
7 Peter Ball
8 Phillip Miller
9 Anton Tjabring
10 John Churchill

Sailors by Country
1 United Kingdom    7,883
2 South Africa              300
3 Italy                            139

Wind – Over 18 Knots
1 Alex Schon (1st)
2 Ewald Erasmus (5th)
3 Andre Holloway (7th)
4 Hennie Swanepoel (19th)
5 Anthony Engelbrecht (31st)
6 Jethro Brophy-Tintinger (39th)
7 Calvin Nicholl (45th)
8 Harry Drysdale (48th)
10 Gavin Wadsworth (56th)

Local sailors also took other top 10 spots – so check out all the results HERE:

Interestingly, Sir Ben Ainslie finished 3,383rd – did you beat him?

BOTY Awards
Cruising World and Sailing World magazines have announced the nominees for the 2016 Boat of the Year (BOTY) awards which recognize and honour the best and newest sailboat models introduced to the North American market.

Two South African boatyards feature, as does a local designer.

In the Cruising Catamaran division, Leopard 40 and Voyage 480 feature alongside the Bali 4.3 Loft; Bavaria Catamaran Open 40 and Fountaine Pajot Ipanema 58. The Leopard Cat is built by Robertson & Caine and the Voyage by Voyage Yachts – both based in Cape Town.

In Sailing World’s performance-oriented models, the FarEast 28 designed by Simonis-Voogd features as one of 13 boats.

We will have to wait until early 2016 for the results, but well done to those who have put our local industry at the forefront of international awards.

‘Mariquita’ – Remember Her?
The 30-Square Metre ‘Mariquita’ was a formidable boat in her day, winning the Lipton Cup on 5 separate occasions.

She is now being restored in Germany by owner Michael Baumann and boatbuilder Michelsen Werft.

In her semi-restored glory she was recently on display at a boat show. Progress can be viewed HERE

The Humble Bucket
The following headline in a press release caught my attention “Unique Bucket is the Best”.

I would never have thought that anything as humble as a bucket could ever be called unique as we all have our favourite type whether it be a stout builders bucket or one of those awfully thin cheap plastic things in supermarkets that purport to be stout! So here’s why?

Small details can make a world of difference. Shurhold Industries offers the World’s Best Bucket, which comes with a 19 mm double-braided nylon handle, for a soft, comfortable grip.

This essential item in every professional or amateur detailer’s kit is proudly made in the USA. The multi-purpose utility item is ideal for more than just washing the boat. It can serve as a trash can, bait bucket, an ice bucket for drinks, as well as storage and tool transportation. Users can even flip it over and make it a work seat or a foot rest after a long day. The World’s Best Bucket is available in black or white, and 13 or 19 litre sizes.

Shurhold also offers the Bucket Base. This sturdy, non-skid/non-marking ring is designed to minimize pails from sliding and toppling, helping prevent any resulting damage.

Check out Shurhold, and indeed its unique bucket HERE

An Ocean Racing Upturn – Phillippa to Compete
The entry for the Transat Jacques Vabre (TJV) which starts on 25 October appears to reflect a welcome upturn for shorthanded ocean racing if the number of rookies, that is those taking on the TJV for the first time, can be considered a useful barometer.

The organisers are welcoming a record entry of rookies, 34 skippers who will race the renowned classic two-handed Autumn Transatlantic for the first time.

Phillippa Hutton-Squire will be competing alongside Pip Hare who has a wealth of short-handed experience as well as two Mini-Transat races under her belt. They will be on ‘Concise 2′, their trusty Class 40 steed in this 4500 mile race from Le Havre, France, to Itajai, Brazil.

Follow her progress and wish the pair well as they take on this challenging race.

SAILING Magazine Cover – October 2015 issue
The cover pic of the classic Yawl ‘Dorade’ sailing away from the Fastnet Rock has caught the imagination of many readers who have commented.

One said that his dream was always to do the Sydney Hobart Race and the Fastnet Race. Part of his dream came true in 1973 when he completed the Fastnet Race as crew on a Half Tonner.

At that time he was working at the Elephant Boat Yard on the Hamble River. Angelo Lavranos, who was then an understudy to Angus Primrose, lived next to him at the yard.

He remembers that back in those days, it was possible, and he did, stand in a circle at the bar of the Island Sailing Club for the after race party, with Ted Heath and Bob Fisher. “I doubt that it would be possible these days to get so close to a serving Prime Minister” he said.

Incidently the pic was taken by Daniel Forster and supplied by Rolex. Check it out HERE

Blokart Provides Momentum for America’s Cup Endeavour Community Sailing Programme
From sea to land, young participants in the America’s Cup community sailing initiative, Endeavour, will learn to harness the power of wind wherever they are with the addition of Blokart International as an Official Supplier.

Blokart, the wheeled land sailing karts, will be used for training and racing as the kids hone their skills.

“Blokarts will serve as tools in helping the Endeavour kids better understand engineering and apparent wind sailing – similar to the concepts for the America’s Cup yachts,” said Tom Herbert-Evans, the Community Sailing Programme manager for the America’s Cup.

“The Blokarts will be great for safely demonstrating basic points of sail before going afloat, and for sailing when the weather doesn’t co-operate. Plus, they’re fun.”

Endeavour is a youth-focussed community sailing and educational programme in connection with the 35th America’s Cup. The mission is to provide unique sporting and educational opportunities through sailing for youths across all socioeconomic backgrounds. It highlights three pillars, including a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math) educational component, the youth sailing initiative, and an internship opportunity for US College sailors and coaches. The programme will have bases in the east (at St. George’s) and west (Dockyard) sides of Bermuda.

South of 50 Voyage
The South of 50 expedition is an ambitious yacht voyage and traverse of the South Georgia Island – in the footsteps of Shackleton, and is aboard the sailing yacht ‘Faraway’ which was purpose designed for high latitude adventure cruising by Angelo Lavranos. She is owned and skippered by Gert van der Linde who was awarded the Gordon Burnwood Trophy by SAS a few years ago for the ‘most meritorious ocean race or passage’ when he took her to the Antarctic.

South Georgia is approximately 1000 nautical miles due East from the Cape Horn of South America, it is a remote and mountainous sub-Antarctic Island. Seventy five percent of the island is covered by snow and ice for almost all of the year and spectacular glaciers tumble down into the ocean from the mountain range running along the spine of the island. The island is exposed to extreme weather moving east from the Drake passage and katabatic winds on shore can reach gale force accelerating to up to 100mph. It is one of the most remote and inhospitable places on the planet – but also one of the most beautiful!

The expedition South of 50 follows the route across South Georgia taken by Shackleton during his epic journey in 1916. A 600 mile voyage on the yacht ‘Faraway’, from Puerto Deseado, South America takes the crew into the icy southern ocean to the Falkland Islands and then a further 600 miles to the rugged shores of South Georgia where three mountaineers will go ashore at King Haakon Bay to then attempt a traverse to Stromness in the footsteps of Shackleton. Successful or not, the team will then set sail on an epic 2600 mile voyage to return to Cape Town, South Africa.

The crew consists of:
Gert van der Linde – vessel owner and master
Nick Leggatt – dedicated crew
Brian Valentine – crew and traverse expedition leader
Scarre Celliers – crew and traverse navigation leader
Ian Manson – crew and traverse safety and environmental officer

Follow their progress HERE

Safety for Cruising Couples
The Safety at Sea Committee of the Cruising Club of America has published an updated version of its highly regarded “Suddenly Alone” workbook, now titled Safety for Cruising Couples – Including Suddenly Alone”. The workbook revisions incorporate the broad experience of CCA members as well as the technology and techniques of safety and safety equipment that have evolved since the “Suddenly Alone” workbook was first published about 15 years ago.

The CCA has a distinguished 15-year history for presenting its Suddenly Alone Seminars – the name of which recently has changed to Safety for Cruising Couples – Suddenly Alone” at numerous yacht clubs and other venues around the U.S. and Canada. CCA members are among the most experienced blue-water sailors, many having completed extensive off-shore cruises, circumnavigations, as well as various off-shore races, such as the Newport Bermuda Race. Much of this experience in seamanship is also applicable to coastal cruising.

Seminars are geared to short-handed coastal cruisers, both sail and power boaters, especially younger cruisers and give the lesser-experienced partner the basic tools he/she needs to become a competent partner on the boat. Competence and mutual confidence leads to a partnership on board that makes cruising safer and more enjoyable for all. The workbook focuses on the essential onboard teamwork of preparing for emergencies, such as Man Overboard Recovery, basic skills of navigation, identifying the boat’s location, boat handling and radio communications.

The workbook is a handy reminder to both experienced and lesser-experienced partners of safety procedures that should be practised every year. The art of safety is increased when both individuals are confident in knowing what to do when the unexpected happens.

To purchase a copy of the workbook, contact Ron Trossbach – atrontrossbach@msn.com

WADA publishes 2016 Prohibited List
On 16 September, the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Executive Committee approved the 2016 List of Prohibited Substances and Methods, which is now available on WADA’s website. The List will come into force on 1 January 2016.

‘”WADA leads an extensive consultative process annually that results in the updated Prohibited List,” said Craig Reedie, President, WADA. “Our Expert Group considers such sources as scientific and medical research; trends; and, intelligence gathered from law enforcement and pharmaceutical companies in order to stay ahead of those that wish to cheat,” he continued. “The 2016 List had a few noteworthy changes/modifications from last year.”

Updated annually, the List is one of five International Standards that are mandatory for all signatories of the World Anti-Doping Code (Code). It designates what substances and methods are prohibited in- and out-of-competition; and, which substances are banned in particular sports. According to the Code, if a substance or method is found to meet two of three criteria (enhances performance, poses a threat to athlete health, violates the spirit of sport), then it could be considered for placement on the List.

The List’s annual revision process is led by WADA and involves extensive consultation, which begins with a draft being circulated for comment amongst stakeholders. The comments are considered by WADA’s List Expert Group, which then presents its conclusions to WADA’s Health, Medical and Research Committee (HMRC). Once this process is concluded, the HMRC makes recommendations to WADA’s Executive Committee, which are discussed before making a final decision during its September meeting.

While some may find this amusing and of absolutely no relevance to themselves, they should be warned that there have been instances when sailors have competed in events, and then been subjected to a drugs test. Results have found some of those people wanting as medication for high blood pressure, heart ailments and more can be on the banned list. So beware and forewarned as the consequences of failing a drug test during sailing competitions are dire.

Information from:  www.wada-ama.org

Sailing Humour
An old sea captain was sitting on a bench near the wharf when a young man walked up and sat down. The young man had spiked hair and each spike was a different colour…. green, red, orange, blue, and yellow.

After a while the young man noticed that the captain was staring at him.

“What’s the matter old timer, never done anything wild in your life?

The old captain replied, “Got drunk once and married a parrot. I was just wondering if you were my son!”

How True! This simply needs to be said!
One man alone can be pretty dumb sometimes, but for real bona fide stupidity, there ain’t nothin’ can beat teamwork. Edward Abbey.

I know ‘teams’ and ‘couples’ who fit this bill like a glove!

I Like This!
S CCESS depends on U.

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Sailor of the Month – Submit Your Nomination NOW
SAILING Magazine, in conjunction with MDM Marine Services, North Sails and Southern Spars, back the ‘Sailor of the Year’ Award.

Monthly winners are featured in SAILING Magazine, with the overall ‘Sailor of the Year’ receiving a substantial cash prize.

The Roll of Honour so far this year reads as follows:
February – Alan Kernick
March – Jof Heathcote
April – Michaela Robinson
May – Peter Funcke
June – Rob van Rooyen
July – Simone Swanepoel
August – Stefano Marcia
September – Blaine Dodds
October – William Edwards

Who can make nominations?  Anyone (individuals, clubs, class associations or administrators) may submit nominations.
What are the criteria?  The award is strictly for ‘sailing excellence’ or in exceptional circumstances, for ‘dedication to the sport’.
What is the procedure?  All nominations must be fully motivated in writing, and must be accompanied by a head-and-shoulders picture of the candidate, plus an action sailing pic aboard his/her boat (unedited hi-resolution (300dpi) digital images are required). Motivations must include current performances, a brief CV of the nominee, and other pertinent, personal background information (age, school, employment, home town etc) so that an interesting editorial on the winner may be written. Failure to submit the required material will result in the nomination not being considered.
Deadlines. Nominations must be received by the 1st of every month, although this may be extended at the Editor’s discretion, so it is recommended to submit them as soon as possible.

If you think there is a sailor worthy of nomination, simply send the nomination with a motivation and a photo of the person to – editor@sailing.co.za

Selected Responses to “Talking Sailing”
●  Thanks for another good issue and for the great review of my book.

In response to the comments of Webb Chiles, some background to the design of Anthony Steward’s boat and his circumnavigation may be of interest to you and your readers.

You may remember Paul Rogers and his unsuccessful open boat long distance voyage from Cape Town to Southampton. Paul came to me to commission the design. He and I both corresponded with Nobby Clark, who was custodian of the sailing records for the Guinness Book of Records. He set the requirements for Paul’s boat and told us what we could or could not do. He said that he had to protect the records set by Webb Chiles and any attempt on those records, in order to be accepted, had to be in a similar boat. Oddly enough, we were allowed to add a ballasted keel and sealed buoyancy compartments but we could not have a boat without bulwarks. It could be self-bailing, which Webb Chiles’s boat wasn’t. It could have a sealed deck but the only thing of importance appeared to be that it must have bulwarks. It didn’t make sense to me because a Laser would not qualify as an open boat but adding bulwarks would make it qualify. Bulwarks would also make the boat more dangerous because of holding a large volume of water if overcome by a wave and tending to trap it upside down due to suction in the event of a capsize. I didn’t like the concept but Paul said to proceed on that basis. We used large freeing ports in the transom to attempt to solve both of the safety problems. As I predicted, Paul capsized about 4 days out of Cape Town and did not know how to right the boat. He refused to accept that it could capsize and would not practise righting a boat as recommended by both myself and the builder, Gerfried Nebe.

A year or two later Anthony Steward bought the plug from the same design and turned it into the boat for his circumnavigation. I told him the rules that Nobby Clark had applied to Paul’s boat. Anthony said that he was not interested in the records held by Webb Chiles. He was doing a voyage to prove himself and would disregard the rules set by Nobby Clark. We all know the outcome of Anthony’s voyage. It was an incredible feat that is beyond the comprehension of most of us.

As for whether or not it qualifies as an open boat voyage is no more than semantics in applying an arbitrary definition of an open boat. The fact is that he sailed around the world on a boat that gave him no protection from the weather and seas. If he had added a bulwark to give some protection then it would have qualified. Frank Dye did some impressive and widely acclaimed open ocean voyaging in a Wayfarer dinghy. His boat would also fail the definition of an open boat if applied as insisted by Nobby Clark but that makes his voyages no less remarkable.

After Anthony completed his voyage, I again contacted Nobby Clark, hoping for some recognition of what Anthony had achieved. His response was that people were doing progressively more ridiculous voyages in smaller and smaller boats and he would not recognise Anthony’s achievement. I felt that to be very unfair because he had recognised the voyages of Webb Chiles in a boat of similar size. This all seems to be of little importance to Anthony, who makes no fuss at all about his voyage.

The Sailing World article that you reference about the current voyage of Webb Chiles (in the link that you show) counts a circumnavigation in the Drascombe Lugger among 5 completed. This is not correct, but may be a misunderstanding by the author. He crossed the Pacific and Indian Oceans, then sailed through the Red Sea and Mediterranean. He did not cross the Atlantic Ocean nor the Caribbean Sea and Panama Canal to complete the circuit. That doesn’t count as a circumnavigation, not on an open nor any other type of boat.  Dudley Dix

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