In Case You Missed It
Here is a response submitted to SailingScuttlebutt.com in response to the pickup of The Prototype blog. I would note that it was not “submitted.”
From Dan Meyers – Newport, RI:
As I get older I figure that I have seen all of the foolishness in the world, but this week the nonsense submitted to Scuttlebutt is appalling.
Mr. Clark, I disagree with your assertion (in Scuttlebutt 3838) that Andrew Simpson “died well”. That he was a wonderful guy and a champion professional racer seems incontrovertible. But athletes are not gladiators to be thrown to the lions. They want to compete, enjoy the sport, the people they sail with and against, be fairly compensated, and then at the end of the day go home, hug the wife and kids, have dinner and go on. This is a tragedy, nothing less.
Mr. Livingston, for you to use this awful accident (in Scuttlebutt 3839) as a bandwagon to promote mostly yourself as a visionary, the venue which is in absolute contravention of the Deed, the promoters who have misrepresented every material development – economic, cost, safety, participation etc, etc, etc – is plain absurdity. But then to twist this around and bash Ernesto Bertarelli is stunningly wrong and in bad taste.
The Cup didn’t need a rescue; many believe the 2007 version was the best ever. A dozen or so teams, millions of spectators, hundreds of thousands of jobs and a host city transformed. Safe and close racing, sometimes with the winner determined by a single second. Mr. Bertarelli has been out of this for years. He has gone back to the sport itself, actively participating as a true yachtsman. And you then have the hypocrisy to complain about “the politics of the past”? Take your garlands and fig leaf and do something anatomically impossible with them.
We now must wait to see what will be done for future safety, to prevent another catastrophic accident that is too likely as the boats get more urgent and in closer proximity of racing. I am no expert, but smaller wings would help, or much lower wind ranges. This was all so predictable, and it is a tragedy that it took a death for others to admit it.
Lastly, if you can’t behave with decorum, how about trying it for a brief period so Andrew Simpson’s family, friends and teammates can bury him and grieve without this stupidity buzzing around their heavy hearts.