sail-world.com -- Rod Davis: What's coming down the track in San Francisco?
Rod Davis: What's coming down the track in San Francisco?
Thu, 23 Aug 2012
Professional sailing coach, Olympic Gold and Silver medalist and long time America's Cup crew and skipper, Rod Davis gives his expectations from the first AC-45 regatta to be sailed in San Francisco.
If the Practice Days are anything to go by – expect carnage. Lots of it. Nose-diving cats and damaged wings make great viewing - so there will be a Show. For most of the racing, the tide will be incoming and that might save the boats.
Two knots of current with the wind; instead of against it when we practiced, means smooth water and effectively four knots less wind. In the big waves, created by tide against the wind, teams quickly use their cat's nine lives.
On the competition side, some of the teams look like this:
Oracle Spithill - should be a very strong team, perhaps the strongest, as this is their homeport and they have spent the longest time sailing in the waters in which we are about to race. Winners of the last season. A solid and tough team.
Ben Ainslie - fresh from winning his fourth gold medal, but new to cats. No question Ben will bring an aggressive style and raise the tempo of all the competing crews. His first regatta in big breeze - he has a lot to learn and very little time. Wait until the next regatta in a month, to see the best of Ben in the cat world
Emirates Team New Zealand - for whom I coach. Preparation-wise it the old story of 'best laid plans of mice and men'. The capsize yesterday just added to it.
We are reasonably comfortable sailing in the big breeze and happy with our boat and sails. The trick for us is to improve each day - and close the gaps with the two-boat teams by the end of the regatta. The last race counts for most of the points, so if we improve throughout, all should be good.
Artemis White (Terry Hutchinson) - in the past the team has been very fast and it has a great match-race record. Terry has struggled in the fleet race starts in the past two regattas. They have been working hard on that. If Artemis White can get off the line, with their speed they will be a contender.
Oracle Coutts – his past record in the cats shows he is there, but not in the front of the front group. Things can change but this is a tough world to get enough racing time and Coutts has had a bit on his plate.
Team Energy - the Dark Horse. Every time I looked up they were beating Spithill in their practice racing. If you looking for an outside bet, put your dollars on Team Energy. Something about these guys l like. Great attitude.
The tough thing about predictions is that you are almost always wrong. Expect the unexpected, because that's what will happen.
No one knows the winner until after the game is played.
Burke Marine, suppliers of international quality marine clothing and equipment, was founded by Martin Burke on the shores of Sydney Harbour in 1971. Visit our website for your nearest stockist. [More info]
Ensign Ship Brokers
Ensign Ship Brokers was established in 1980 and has spent the last 28 years expanding our marine knowledge and developing our reputation! We strive to provide the very best service! [More info]
GME Standard Communications Pty Ltd
Leaders in communications and navigation. Their goal has always been to make products whose innovation, convenience and peace of mind can help improve the lives of their customers. [More info]
Hamilton Island Luxury Accommodation
Full range of private apartments, villas and houses on Hamilton Island. 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6 bedroom options available. All include buggy and island airport or marina transfers. [More info]
Multihull Solutions is Australia and New Zealand’s premier offshore and cruising catamaran and trimaran specialist, offering sales and servicing of the world’s finest multihull brands.
Navionics is proud of its superb cartographic database comprising more than 25,000 charts and port plans; the largest privately owned database of its kind, the only one using full seamless technology [More info]
OziOpti is all about 'getting kids in boats' and the Australian company supporting the introduction to of the world’s most popular junior sailing yacht, the 'International Optimist Dinghy' [More info]
Performance Sailcraft Australia (Asia Pacific)
Laser builder Performance Sailcraft Australia has taken on the successful RS Sailboat range from Britain, and is now licensed to build and distribute all of the RS range in the Asia Pacific region. [More info]
Sealink Magnetic Island Race Week
Entries for the fourth annual Sealink Magnetic Island Race Week have opened! 4 days of racing, 5 days of fun – that is what you can look forward to from 3-7 September at Magnetic Island. [More info]
Vicsail Sydney Pty Ltd, launched into the Australian sailing fraternity in 1983 and has been sailing strong ever since. At Vicsail, “We Sail the Boats We Sell”. [More info]