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THE AMERICA'S CUP : Barnes Pins Hopes on His Top 40

September 07, 1988|TOM KRASOVIC

SAN DIEGO — Crewing the 133-foot New Zealand monohull presents a unique challenge, especially for skipper David Barnes. Barnes, making his first America's Cup appearance at the helm, will oversee a crew that will range in number from 35-40 and in age from 19-43.

His Mission Implausible has two other dimensions.

About 15 of the crew members are not sailors, per se.

And Barnes' boss, millionaire banker Michael Fay, will be on board.

"Coordinating 11 football players is a big deal," said Gary Jobson, ESPN race analyst and tactician to Ted Turner on Courageous in 1977. "But 40! Talk about a logistical nightmare. I kind of wonder how that is going to go. And having Fay aboard. If I were Marcus Allen, and Al Davis was lining up next to me, I'd be thinking, 'Boy, am I doing the right thing?'

"That has to be in back of David Barnes' mind. For a young guy like Barnsey to have this super-high-powered owner next to you, has got to have an effect."

French tycoon Baron Bich sailed in his boat during the 1970 Cup trials, with disastrous results. That is believed to be the only other time a chairman has participated in the race.

The crew for the New Zealand operates in three teams:

--The "speed" team is responsible for sail trim and boat speed.

--The "thrust" team changes and bags the sails.

--The "rail" team serves as live ballast to the weather side (the side that rides higher) and keeps the giant boat sailing on its lines. It is not totally a cushy job, said Fay, who called himself as an average sailor. Because of the concave hull, rail team members will be sitting without back support for, depending on boat speed, 3 1/2-7 hours.

SPEED TEAM

David Barnes, skipper, 30: Steers, has final say on all on-the-water decisions. Will trade off with tactician at helm. Barnes was backup skipper to Chris Dickson on Kiwi Magic in Cup trials in 1986-87.

Peter Lester, tactician, 34: Provides skipper with readings on wind and sea, advises skipper on race tactics, monitors crew and equipment. Won World OK Dinghy title in 1977. Will steer at times.

Richard Morris, navigator, 25: Charts course to mark, assesses computer readouts, assists crew in headsail deployment.

Tom Schnackenberg, cockpit, 43: A sail designer in his fourth Cup campaign, he will be on boat for first time during a Cup and will decide what sails to use and what camber to provide. He is considered the sharpest member of Kiwi team.

Bruce Farr, cockpit: Designed the boat and will serve as a sounding board for fellow members of the cockpit.

THRUST TEAM

Jeremy Scantlebury, pit boss-boat captain, 28: Supervises crew of 6-8 grinders in the pit.

Robert Salthouse, trimmer boss, 23: Liaison between cockpit and sail trimmers.

Donald Cowie, trimmer, 26: Sail traveler.

Warwick Fleury, trimmer, 27: Adjusts mainsail. Also is weather analyst.

Mark Hauser, trimmer, 24: Adjusts jib.

Andrew Taylor, grinder, 25: Lowers and raises sails; provides muscle where needed; assists other grinders: Edwin Askew, 26; Marcus Brown, 26; Bill Handy; Keith Hawkins, 26; George Jakich, 24; Paul Matich, 24; Rubin Muir, 25; Chris Salthouse, 19.

Alan Smith, foredeck boss, 24: Supervises moving of sails by foredeck members Nick Heron, 25; David Hurley, 22; Peter Warren, 24. All three will move sails and may be asked to make adjustments on mast or on bowsprit.

RAIL TEAM

Announced: Michael Fay, chairman of New Zealand Challenge; Andrew Johns, lawyer of New Zealand Challenge; Russell Bowler, designer; Clive Brown, shore crew welder; Mike Drummond, designer; Bob Graham, engineer; Murray Greenhalgh, sparmaker, shore crew member; Peter Jeromsen, machinist-engineer; Lance Manson, rigger; Chris Wilkins, boat builder.

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