“Talking Sailing” by Richard Crockett – issue 32

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issue – 32
27 July 2015

I am continually amazed at how much sailing takes place during our winter – especially as many of our key major events happen in winter. It’s somewhat strange as in many countries sailing literally stops in winter, but not here!

In those countries where the sport shuts for winter and boats are hauled for the cold season, their boat owners have a ‘forced’ maintenance period. In many ways we don’t have that, and as a consequence maintenance can be neglected.

Despite winter, our sailors have been competing at all levels rights around the world, and with some success too… – so read on and enjoy “Talking Sailing”.

Enjoy this issue as we Talk About…
•  Hobie 14 World Title to Blaine Dodds
•  SB 20 Worlds disappointment
•  What is a ‘U’ Flag Disqualification?
•  Laser Worlds – Marcia & Keen Shine
•  Laser World Record Passage
•  Hoping to Find SPROG 313
•  Lipton Cup
•  Lipton Cup Query
•  Bart’s Bash – Don’t Forget to Register
•  ISAF Disciplinary Commission
•  Solo Record Attempt for Sailing Non-stop Around the World “The Wrong Way”
•  Yachting Journalists Voice Concern Over Water Pollution
•  Variety Is Not A Dirty Word
•  Summer Sailstice – Top 10 Reasons To Sail This Weekend
•  Black Tot Day
• Sailing Humour – Signboard
• 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”

Hobie 14 World Title to Blaine Dodds
This man is simply remarkable as he continues to win across a broad spectrum of Hobie disciplines – beating the best in the world too.

Blaine Dodds has just won the Hobie 14 Worlds – finishing 20 points ahead of his closest rival. That’s a beating of note.

Blaine is an unassuming guy who puts so much effort into Hobie sailing in general, as he does to his own sailing, so his success is well deserved. He has a few more disciplines in which to compete at the current Hobie MultiWorlds on Lake Garda – so watch this space.

Sean Ferry, a multi-world champ, finished 3rd in the Hobie 16 Masters Worlds. He too has more events in which to compete, so let’s hope he can climb up a few steps on the podium as these events unfold.

SB 20 Worlds Disappointment
Roger Hudson who together with Asenathi Jim are campaigning to qualify RSA for the Olympics, took a break recently to further the aims of the RaceAhead Foundation by competing in the SB 20 Worlds. They included two youngsters, Alex Burger and Taariq Jacobs in their crew, with the aim of giving them a taste of hot international competition.

Both Hudson and Jim are previous World SB 20 Champions having won the event in Australia a few years ago, and having been podium finishers in other SB 20 Worlds too.

This time they were leading after day 1, were 2nd after day 2, and in with a very real chance of winning the world title when the last two races simply went ‘pear shaped’ for them.

In the penultimate race they chose a pin-end start, but were early and had to gybe out, thus struggling to find a lane back and were nearly last at the windward mark. They fought back to eventually finish 24th in a fleet of 90-plus boats – a really good recovery.

As they had not had a result outside the top ten all regatta, and their closest rivals had, this ‘discard’ result did not deter them too much as it in fact put them in quite a strong position overall due to their rivals having to carry a score in double figures.

In the final race, while trying to be conservative, they were forced over the line at the pin by an almost out-of-control competitor trying to squeeze into a hole that was simply not big enough. In avoiding a collision Hudson was forced over and received a UFD – U-Flag Disqualification – ending their dreams of a podium finish – and even overall victory – as they finished 4th overall.

Irrespective, this was an impressive result and really good experience for the two youngsters on board.

What is a ‘U’ Flag Disqualification?
Until this event I had not consciously been aware of this penalty, and then a few days later saw that Graeme Willcox and Andrew Tarboton also received a UFD penalty. So here it is, spelt it out for those who would like to know what it means and from whence it originated:

A vote was made at the ISAF Annual General meeting in Palma de Mallorca, Spain, in November 2014 in favour of adding a new starting penalty in Rule 30. Submission 135-14 received a unanimous “yes” vote from the ISAF Racing Rules Committee and the changed wording will appear in the next edition of the Racing Rules of Sailing.

Basically this is what the new rule says:
If flag U has been displayed, no part of a boat’s hull, crew or equipment shall be in the triangle formed by the ends of the starting line and the first mark during the last minute before her starting signal. If a boat breaks this rule and is identified, she shall be disqualified without a hearing, but not if the race is restarted or resailed. This changes RRS 26 and A5. When Flag U is used as the preparatory signal, Rule 29.1, individual recall does not apply. The scoring abbreviation for a Flag U penalty is UFD. This changes A11 Scoring Abbreviations.

Further Explanation:
This is very similar to the Black Flag with the exception that if the start becomes a general recall the penalty will be annulled. In normal circumstances if a Black Flag start is recalled the numbers of the boats BFD are posted and they are disqualified immediately and they may not sail in the race. Under flag U if the start is recalled everyone is entitled to sail the race. However the deterrent is still there because you don’t know if the race will be recalled so you cannot count on that.

Laser Worlds – Marcia & Keen Shine
There are three significant reasons why I am mentioning this event.

1. Stefano Marcia qualified South Africa for the 2016 Olympics in Rio.

Of the 46 places available on the Rio 2016 Laser start line, nine were up for grabs at the 2015 Worlds, and one of these went to Stefano who qualified for the Worlds Gold fleet and who eventually finished 45th in a fleet of over 150.

His achievement is massive and deserves to be shouted from the rooftops as this young man has hung in over many months of intense international competition to achieve his goal. Often alone at regattas internationally, he has had to deal with disappointing results on his own, pick himself up and move on to greater things – something he has now done with aplomb, hard work, dedication and a single-mindedness to achieve.

To put this in perspective, most of the sailors on the international circuit who are serious about qualifying for the Olympics, are part of a national squad which is backed by federations and governments and which includes back-up personnel, coaches, on-water assistance and more.

For South African sailors this is simply not part of the deal – as they are known as ‘privateers’ on the circuit. Doing their own thing, often funding themselves, and operating as individuals.

Thanks to Michael Hayton and Amtec, Stefano has had excellent funding.

“Thank you to Michael Hayton who has made my dream come true and backed me the whole way through my campaign. Amtec Racing is going to Olympics” he said proudly in his announcement from Kingston, Canada.

Having qualified for the Gold fleet, Stefano is now concentrating on improving his world ranking of 81st.

2. Alan Keen competed in the Laser Masters Worlds in the Great Grandmaster fleet and finished tied for 1st place with Mark Bethwaite of Australia. Regrettably Keen was relegated to 2nd overall when the tie-break took effect. Despite this, his result is well deserved especially for a man who puts so much into sailing and building the sport. Well done Alan.

3. I have never, in over 30 years of publishing SAILING Magazine, received such shoddy treatment from the PR outfit at a world championship event. I specifically requested a good pic of Stefano Marcia in hi-res to use on the cover of SAILING Magazine, but this request was declined as these images were only available for “accompaniment of an article either promoting or directly reporting about CORK Kingston and their hosting of Laser World Championships”.

Sad really as an interview with Stefano, in the same issue for which I requested the image, was done via Skype immediately after he knew he had qualified the country.

Even more sad as the likes of the America’s Cup, Rolex Sydney Hobart Race, Rolex Fastnet Race, Volvo Ocean Race and many, many more major events are happy to receive the coverage. K……N you lost out badly!

I was able to source a cover pic of Stefano from Daniel Smith of ISAF, who was very helpful and supportive. This pic and the interview with Stefano are in the August issue of SAILING Magazine, and will be available in a few days.

Laser World Record Passage
Robert Suhay recently broke the Guinness World Record for the longest distance sailed solo and unassisted in a dinghy. He was aboard a Laser dinghy for this passage.

The existing record stood at 283.5 nautical miles, and the GPS tracker aboard his boat recorded his total distance travelled unassisted as 346.1 nautical miles.

I sincerely hope that we don’t have any mad-cap laser sailors wanting to do this off our coast?

Hoping to Find SPROG 313
Johan van Dyk recently made contact as he is in search of Tom Orpan’s (his Grandfather) old Sprog (Sail #313), which he built and sailed at Knysna Yacht Club. He sold it just before he passed away some 30-plus years ago.

“I am an avid Sailing Magazine reader and wooden dinghy restorer (currently busy with an Extra dinghy). I would like to track down Sprog 313 and if able, restore it” he said.

If you can assist Johan van Dyk, please contact him at: 083 626 6688 or johan@rootmarketing.co.za

Lipton Cup
This was an interesting year as just 16 clubs contested, many with youth and development teams. The jury is out as to whether this is a good or bad thing, and there is a school of thought which believes that as it is our country’s major event, it should be contested by our top sailors.

Whatever your thinking, it is good to see that there are a bunch of young sailors already inspired to get their hands on the Lipton Cup one Day.

Greg Davis, co-skipper with David Rae, won his 13th Lipton Cup, this time for RCYC. I hope he is not superstitious – as could this be the last time he wins it?

The name Greg Davis, along with many others like Chris King, Etienne van Cuyck, Rick Nankin, Dave Hudson and more who have won multiple Lipton Cups, had me thinking. All these guys have made names for themselves in the sport over many years, and have always brought their ‘A’ game to the Lipton Cup. They have always lifted the standard of competition in every event and class they compete in, and have kept campaigning through thick-and-thin.

My reason for stating the above is that there are some (still) youthful sailors who have won the event, some more than once, and now no longer compete. Is it because the youth of today look for instant gratification, and having achieved, go off in search of other goals to reach? It’s a pity as I don’t see many household sailing names in the making just yet.

Lipton Cup Query
A query from a reader – follow-up!

Last issue we had this query: “I know the short answer is ‘the Lipton deed of gift says it must be in July/August’, but we all know it would be much better to sail at a better time of the year (in the Cape at least). If they could change the boats, why not the time of regatta?

Dave Hudson responded: “If you ask any good Cape Town sailor when is the best time of the year to sail, they will to a man say July/August.” As Hudson pointed out, the winds are good, and the rain is of little significance. Some of Cape Town’s summer regattas have, in recent years, been moved due to the high summer winds”.

The same reader followed this up during the Lipton Cup with this: “I know you got a response from Dave Hudson, but I’m just not convinced!. It doesn’t look like much fun out there, and the weather hardly looks like improving.”

Maybe July was not the right time for the Lipton Cup in Cape Town?

Bart’s Bash – Don’t Forget to Register
Don’t forget that 20 September is Bart’s Bash day.

So far the following RSA Clubs have signed up:
Algoa Bay Yacht Club
Imperial Yacht Club
Mossel Bay Yacht and Boat Club
Point Yacht Club
Redhouse Yacht Club
The Catamaran Club
Zeekoe Vlei Yacht Club

If your venue hasn’t already signed up please do so NOW at:  www.bartsbash.com

ISAF Disciplinary Commission
I recently received information about an ISAF disciplinary matter of a Rule 35 complaint, the contents of which are not really relevant.

What was interesting is that our very own Lance Burger was the Panel Chairman.

Lance is a man who very quietly goes about his business as an active sailor, administrator and a respected ISAF International Judge.

Solo Record Attempt for Sailing Non-stop Around the World “The Wrong Way”
Solo round the world sailor Steve White has launched his ‘Westabout’ campaign to attempt the solo record for sailing non-stop around the world ‘the wrong way’. The Westabout route means that Steve will sail against the prevailing winds and currents through the Southern Ocean, the wildest and most remote waters on the planet.

Only five people have held the record since it was originally set by Sir Chay Blyth in 1970/71 – in fact more people have walked on the moon than have completed ‘The Impossible Voyage’.

The boat of choice for Steve is a Volvo 70.

Previous Attempts have been made by the following, with van den Heede being the current record holder:
“British Steel”    Sir Chay Blyth, GBR            Aug 71         292 days
“Group 4”           Mike Golding GBR               Jun 94        161d 16h 35m 42s
“Uunet”               Philippe Monet FRA            Jan 00        151d 19h 54m 36s
“Adrien”              J.L Van Den Heede FRA    Mar 04        122d 14h 3m 49s

Yachting Journalists Voice Concern Over Water Pollution
The Yachting Journalists’ Association (YJA) expresses extreme concern over the use of Guanabara Bay for the sailing events of the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro next year. Despite continued protests over the state of the pollution of the water since the site was first approved in 2009, nothing has been achieved to limit or reduce the pollution in the bay and this has now reached a significantly dangerous level as well as failing to provide a level racetrack for the competitors.

Only a third of Rio de Janeiro’s sewage is treated, and competitors in sailing events will need a series of inoculations.

In addition to the untreated faeces and urine from the surrounding area, which is dumped into Guanabara Bay, Rio’s sewers deliver many other foreign objects into the Bay – bodies of dead humans and animals plus large items of rubbish, which are a hazard to the progress of small sailing craft.

The Brazilian authorities promised the Bay would be cleared for the sailing events as far back as 2009, but no effective work has been carried out and the state of the Bay is now worse than it was.

There would appear to be a concerted recalcitrance by the Rio authorities, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) to tackle this problem, and with the Sailing Events of the 2016 Olympic Games now only a year away, it would appear that nothing will be done to improve the state of pollution in the waters where the racing will take place. There are, after all, some 150 murders a day in the Rio area – a figure that is not falling and shows no signs of so doing.

The high level of pollution is dangerous to the health of all athletes racing on the Bay, and to the race officials and support teams. In test events, competitors have hit semi-floating objects, which have caught around centerboards and rudders, thereby making the racecourse unfair.

Perhaps the only option would be to move the site of the Olympic Regatta to Búzios – just 75 miles from Rio de Janeiro – where the waters are clear and unpolluted. (Note: Weymouth, where the sailing events of the last Olympic Games were held in 2012, is 136 miles from London. In addition, there is a suitable marina at Buzios, which in six months could be altered for the major event).

The Yachting Journalists’ Association strongly believes that it needs, simply, action – NOW. It is time to abandon Guanabara Bay as the venue and move it to a safe and clean water venue – IMMEDIATELY.

YJA Chairman Paul Gelder said: “It’s astonishing that those in a position to solve the Rio Olympics pollution scandal seem to have turned a blind eye and a deaf ear to multiple protests, as well as irrefutable scientific evidence of toxic dangers. This fiasco has been going on for months and our sailors face an unacceptable risk.”

Variety Is Not A Dirty Word
Extract from ‘Scuttlebutt’.
We applaud the New York Yacht Club’s decision to offer a variety of courses at last weekend’s IRC East Coast Championship. Not only does this create much more interest and enjoyment for the competitors, but as the results demonstrate, it gives everybody the chance to show off their boats’ abilities over a range of courses.  – Mike Urwin, Technical Director, RORC Rating Office

Editor’s note: Are we, as a sport, beginning to recognize how a steady diet of Windward-Leeward races does not feed the whole family?

Any thoughts on this from readers as I believe that a repetitive diet of windward-leeward courses are not good for our sport?

Summer Sailstice – Top 10 Reasons To Sail This Weekend
The above organisation is dedicated to getting people onto the water and enjoying sailing. Just before this year’s northern hemisphere’s summer solstice, they published this:

Top 10 Reasons To Sail This Weekend
10. It’s Summertime – Most Daylight of the Whole Year.
From the high Northern latitudes to much of the Southern Hemisphere it’s prime sailing time. If not now, when?
9. Your Friends Will All Be Out There.
Get together in a cove or on the race course – you’ll be part of hundreds of events on the Summer Sailstice site.
8. You Could Win.
There’s a One-Week BVI Charter From Sunsail or hundreds of other great prizes from your favourite marine suppliers
7. It’s Easy.
You don’t have to bake a turkey, wrap presents, dress in green, hide eggs OR march in a parade – but since Summer Sailstice is your holiday, you’re free to develop your own creative “sailing on the Sailstice” traditions. And because, 20 years from now when Summer Sailstice becomes a three-day holiday weekend with Monday off, you’ll remember how you helped get it all started.
6. Introduce Friends And Family.
Parents with kids or sailing communities with newcomers – share sailing at the beginning of summer so they can enjoy it all summer long. A global sailing celebration makes all of sailing visible, understandable and approachable.
5. You’ll Be Sailing ‘With’ Multihull Legend Loick Peyron.
And sailing with sailors everywhere. Don’t be the only one left ashore. Do what Loick is doing: go sailing this weekend.
4. ‘The Meek Will Inherit the Earth, The Brave Get The Oceans’.
Be brave and join the world’s sailors at sea. An escape to the sea is the antidote to almost everything.
3. Everyone Needs A Deadline.
If you’re not sailing by the first weekend of summer when will you be sailing?
2. The Earth Is 70% Covered In Water.
It’s less crowded ‘out there’. You’re missing something if you spend the majority of your life on just 30% of the planet.
1. For Everyone To Celebrate The Pure Pleasure Of Sailing.
Beyond the all the great reasons above the pure pleasure of sailing on any day of the year should be reason enough to be out on this day of the year!

Go to Summer Sailstice at: www.summersailstice.com

Black Tot Day
Black Tot Day is on Friday 31 July, and is the name given to the last day on which the Royal Navy issued sailors with a daily rum ration (the daily tot).

In the 17th century the daily drink ration for English sailors was a gallon of beer, but due to storage issues this was changed in 1655 to a half pint of rum. In 1740 an order was issued that the rum be mixed with water in a 4:1 water to rum ratio, and split into two servings per day.

In 1824 the size of the tot was halved to a quarter pint. In 1850 the Admiralty’s Grog Committee, convened and recommended that it be eliminated completely. However rather than ending it the navy further halved it to an eighth of a pint per day, eliminating the evening serving of the ration.

On December 17, 1969 the Admiralty Board issued a written answer to a question from the MP, Christopher Mayhew saying “The Admiralty Board concludes that the rum issue is no longer compatible with the high standards of efficiency required now that the individual’s tasks in ships are concerned with complex, and often delicate, machinery and systems on the correct functioning of which people’s lives may depend”. This led to a debate in the House of Commons on the evening of January 28, 1970, now referred to as the ‘Great Rum Debate’, started by James Wellbeloved, who believed that the ration should not be removed. The debate lasted an hour and 15 minutes and closed with a decision that the rum ration was no longer appropriate.

July 31, 1970 was the final day of the rum ration.

I know that the Due North Rum Club guys who meet at the Algoa Bay Yacht Club will be celebrating – of that there is no doubt! As an ‘Affiliate Member’ of this August body I would expect nothing less, despite not being able to be with them. Enjoy lads – you will be in my thoughts.

So, if your club does not celebrate Black Tot Day, get a few of your rum-swilling mates and have a tot (or more) at 18h00 on Friday.

Remember though – please DON’T drink and drive.

Sailing Humour
Signboard Seen beside an old lugger in a boatyard:
Yes, it is made of wood.
Yes, we are restoring it.
Yes, it will take a long time.
Yes, do engage brain before asking further questions.

How True! This simply needs to be said!
Dear Alcohol
We had a deal, you were going to make me funnier, sexier, more intelligent, and a better dancer.
I saw the video. We need to talk.

I Like This!
There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them.

A Lasting Gift – A subscription to SAILING Magazine
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Call 031-7096087 or e-mail: derri@sailing.co.za

Subscriptions are available as a printed magazine OR a digital e-zine. Your choice.

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.

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

Some Selected Responses to “Talking Sailing”
●  Always love getting this. Thanks!

●  As always, we admire the energy that goes into these productions – especially the Turner article.

●  My monthly fix, Captain! So nice to see the Ladies on SCA doing the business when they’d been written off by some of our chauvinistic colleagues!

●  Enjoyed Richard! Many thanks. I like the new on-line format. Enjoyed the Volvo comment and ‘Ted Turner’s Greatest Race’ – while ‘Hostile Regulations’ is cause for huge concern.

“Talking Sailing” is written by Richard Crockett, the Publisher & Editor of SAILING Magazine, South Africa’s monthly sailing mag.

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“Talking Sailing” by Richard Crockett – issue 50

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