News Briefs for November 20, 2006

The latest racing news

Jim Capron Selected as New President of US SAILINGThe Board of Directors of US SAILING has elected Jim Capron of Annapolis, Md., as the organization's new president. Immediate past president Janet Baxter (Chicago) passed the helm to Capron at the organization's annual meeting in Newport last weekend."I'm looking forward to working with our many sailors, clubs, classes and partners in promoting and improving our sport," said Capron. "Serving as president of sailing's national governing body is quite a responsibility and I am honored to have been elected for this position."Capron has been involved with US SAILING in many capacities over the years. He has served on the organization's Board of Directors since 2001, most recently as a Vice President. He has also been a member of numerous committees, including the Appeals, Judges, Race Administration, and Olympic Sailing Committees. In addition, Capron is a US SAILING Senior Judge and Umpire as well as an International Judge and Umpire certified by the International Sailing Federation (ISAF). As an official, he has served as a judge or umpire at many international events, including the Olympic Games, Louis Vuitton Cup, Volvo Ocean Race, and the ISAF World Sailing Games.Alinghi Kicks Off Winter Training in DubaiThe defender of the 32nd America's Cup kicked off the winter training Nov. 20 in Dubai. "We are here to continue developing the boats, so we'll be doing more testing, but also to train as a race crew, so there will be more racing too" said Brad Butterworth, team skipper, at a press conference at the Dubai International Marine Club (DIMC). This event marks the start of the winter training for the Swiss team. "The focus will move from testing to race training," explains Butterworth, adding a word about the choice of Dubai as a location: "The weather conditions here are the reason we have come, they almost exactly emulate the conditions in Valencia, Spain in June, which is when the America's Cup Match will be next year." The weather conditions coupled with the fact that the DIMC has provided good logistical support has made the re-location a smooth operation, First came the 3,500-ton cargo ship carrying the contents of the Alinghi compound, which set off from Valencia on the Oct. 23. The route took it through the Suez Canal into the Red Sea, on into the Arabian Gulf and through the Straits of Hormuz to arrive 18 days and 4,600 nautical miles later in Jebel Ali Port of Dubai. The shore crew set up the temporary base at the Dubai International Marine Club with a boatshed, sail loft, 10 workshop containers, the two America's Cup Class racing yachts, masts, keels, no less than 65 sails and everything else that is needed to get the boats out sailing everyday. The days begin early at the Alinghi camp; gym call for the sailors is at 7 a.m. The shore crew will prepare the racing yachts to launch for mid-day and testing will run until just before darkness falls at about 5:30 p.m. The general program is a six-day week; five days testing and one of race training. Alinghi will be in Dubai until late February when the team will return to Valencia to continue training for the America's Cup Match, which will be from the June 23 to July 7, 2007.For more, click here Kip Stone Wins 50-foot Class in Route du RhumKip Stone of Freeport, Maine, crossed the Route du Rhum finish line off Point a Pitre, Guadeloupe, to win the Class 2 monohull division at 10:38 GMT on Nov. 16 (5:38 a.m. EDT). The 3,500-mile solo transatlantic race started Oct. 29 in St. Malo, France. Stone also set a new class record of 17 days, 22 hours, and 36 minutes, beating Australian Nick Moloney's 2002 record by approximately 18 hours.Stone is the first American to win a class in the celebrated Route du Rhum, which has been held every four years since 1978. Stone joins Americans Phil Weld, Walter Green, and Steve Fossett in completing the race."This is a very demanding race from all perspectives," said Stone upon arrival in Point a Pitre. "It's a fabulous race and I'm really very happy. We ran into all kinds of conditions-wind from zero to 40 knots; a very hot sun, lots of rain, winds from every direction. I don't think I saw the sun at all the first week out."Stone had his share of mishaps along the route. A sudden front moved through on Day 10 and shredded one of his headsails. To secure the flapping sail, he used a knot known as the Prusik to ascend the rig in 20 knots of wind. On another day, he was smacked in the back of the head by a flying fish.Over 70 sailors in eight classes competed in this year's event. Servane Escoffier, the 25-year-old French sailor, came close to overtaking Stone in the second half of the race. "It took me a while to maneuver so that I was able to cover her. It was a tight race," said Stone.For more on Stone's remarkable win, click hereKevin Pritchard wins Windsurfing Wave TitleKevin Pritchard continues to fulfill his dreams by winning the prestigious Professional Windsurfers Association Wave World Title on Maui. Hawaii was the scene for the final wave event on the PWA World Tour held at Hookipa beach park over the past 10 days.Pritchard sailed consistent the whole year and once again put in another solid performance at Hookipa to finish third to Josh Angulo in first Jason Polakow in second."This has been one of my goals over the past few years and now I made it again for the second time," said Pritchard. "I've had a fantastic year and now with the wave title under my belt, I can relax a bit and enjoy the off season. I'm super stoked to have the final event at Hookipa with all my friends and family around to enjoy my victory."Trotman, St. Petersburg YC Win US SAILING AwardsUS SAILING, national governing body of the sport, has awarded its Nathanael G. Herreshoff Trophy to Susie Trotman (Syosset, N.Y.) for her outstanding contribution to the sport of sailing in the U.S. Trotman was presented with the Trophy, US SAILING's most prestigious award, by US SAILING's President Janet Baxter this evening at an awards banquet at US SAILING's Annual Meeting in Newport, R.I. To a standing ovation, Trotman accepted the award. Susie Trotman has played a major role in the development of the national certification program for sailing instructors when the small boat program was first created in the early 1980s. She was instrumental in the cultivation of US SAILING's Training Department and Training's Small Boat Instructor Training and Certification Program. Her enthusiasm, dedication, and commitment helped foster the program's growth by promoting and managing 20 annual Small Boat courses with 300 instructor candidates in the Northeast and around the country. US SAILING has awarded its prestigious St. Petersburg Yacht Club Trophy for excellence in race management to Corpus Christi YC in Corpus Christi, Texas. Corpus Christi YC was selected from a list of 19 nominations for outstanding organization and execution of the J/80 World Championship held last July. The Trophy was presented to Commodore Steve Hastings, Teri Ficken, Regatta Chairman and Mark Foster, Principal Race Officer.US SAILING Announces New Members to Board of DirectorsUS SAILING announced today the nine elected members of its Board of Directors. The nine board members were elected by the organization's members after a two-month voting period. This is the first time in US SAILING's history that the organization held member elections for its Board of Directors. Members of US SAILING's Board of Directors serve for a three-year term in rotation. Since this marks the first time the organization has held a Board election and to prevent that all Board members' terms will end in the same year, the length of the elected Board members' terms varies. The new Board members and the length of their terms are: Dick Allsopp (Orange Park, Fla.) - one-year term; Jim Tichenor (Houston, Texas) - one-year term; Susan Epstein (Sharon, Mass.) - one-year term; Amy Gross-Kehoe (Santa Clara, Calif.) - two-year term; Chip Johns (Mattapoisett, Mass.) - two-year term; Bill Stump (Venice, Calif.) - two-year term; Tom Hubbell (Delaware, Ohio) - three-year term; Patty Lawrence (Cincinnati) - three-year term; Jerome Montgomery (Long Beach, Calif.) - three-year termFor more on US SAILING's Board of Directors, click here