Small Stuff Long island Sound May 2007

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Beneteau announces the arrival of the new 40

Following the launch of the 49 and 46 last fall, Beneteau has introduced the all-new Beneteau 40, created by the collaboration of the naval architects Berret/Racoupeau with the design firm of Nauta Yachts.

The boat features a sweeping deck line and large twin-wheel cockpit, with a spacious and luminous interior accented with Moabi hardwoods.

The 40 debuted in the United States at Strictly Sail Philadelphia in January. www.beneteauusa.com

Two inducted into sailing Hall

Laurie Davidson of New Zealand and Bruno Troublé of Paris have been named as the 2007 inductees to the America’s Cup Hall of Fame.

The inductees, who exemplify the best in both the design and international promotion of racing for the Cup, will be honored at the America’s Cup Hall of Fame 15th Annual Induction Ceremony June 24 in Valencia, Spain.

As one of the best America’s Cup designers since the introduction of the new America’s Cup class in 1990, Davidson had also played a role in the design of the New Zealand fiberglass 12 Meters that were among the top performers during the 1987 competition in Fremantle, Australia.

In the 1995 challenge in San Diego, both Davidson and Doug Peterson were named designers for the Kiwis. Davidson was the designer of NZL 32 and Peterson the designer of NZL 38. Both designers and other technicians contributed to the rig and other details after the basic design was established. NZL 32 went on to win the Cup in five straight races over the American defender.

In 2000, when Davidson was chief designer for Team New Zealand, it was asserted that designers for the other teams had used NZL 32 as their point of departure. But that year Davidson took another jump ahead and came up with what is now known as the Davidson bow — a forward overhang geometry that provides slightly greater sailing length within the rating. Again the Davidson boat won in five straight races, this time against the challenger Luna Rossa from Italy.

During the 2003 challenge all the boats involved but one had the “Davidson bow.” The exception was the Italian Prada entry, which part way through the campaign had its bow modified to be similar to the other boats.

Troublé has been very special to the America’s Cup — as a sailor and skipper, then as the mastermind behind the Louis Vuitton Cup.

Troublé, a Flying Dutchman and Soling champion, was skipper of two challenges for the America’s Cup led by Baron Marcel Bich. Troublé had been drafted from the 1976 French Olympic sailing team and did such a good job at starting he was promoted to skipper of France I during the Challenger series in 1977. He then returned to skipper France III in 1980. In 1983 he participated in a challenge led by Yves Rousset-Rouard.

Troublé visited the New York Yacht Club when he was 17 while competing in a 505 World Championship in Larchmont, N.Y. Standing in the model room of the Yacht Club, the atmosphere and history of the America’s Cup had such an impact on him that the Cup eventually became a significant part of his life. Troublé went on to create a public relations agency in Paris, D’Day, and became the driving force behind the Louis Vuitton Cup for challengers, which continues through the 2007 races.

Changes made to offshore special regs

US Sailing announced two changes to the 2006-’07 ISAF Special Regulations Governing Offshore and Oceanic Equipment and Preparation, including US Sailing Prescriptions.

The changes, which apply to races held in U.S. waters that invoke them, were approved by US Sailing’s board of directors after careful review and study by the organization’s Safety at Sea Committee. US Sailing will submit the changes to the International Sailing Federation for incorporation in the international regulations.

Regulation 3.08.2(a) previously required that all hatches be above water level when a boat is heeled 90-degrees. However, US Sailing has found that many boats in today’s racing fleets might not meet this requirement, and that inspectors and designers were not checking this due to uncertainties in test conditions. This regulation has now been waived and US Sailing’s submission to ISAF will address hatch size, off-center hatch placement, vessel displacement, and trim when heeled.

Regulation 3.03.1(c) previously allowed race organizers to approve any entry of boats that did not have design, standards or construction certification. After learning of a boat that was not built to industry standards had incurred internal damage in a race — while a race organizer had approved the boat to compete in that race — it was determined that this regulation had placed a legal burden on race organizers that was never intended. Typically, race organizers are not qualified to inspect construction and certify that a boat meets known industry standards. US Sailing’s submission to ISAF will address alternate methods of compliance if certification to standards is not available, for example when a boat’s designer has died or the builder has gone out of business.

US Sailing invites sailors’ feedback on the changes to Paul Miller, member of US Sailing’s Safety at Sea Committee, at phmiller@usna.edu .