Please select your home edition
Edition
SailX 728x90

America's Cup- Murray Jones on the AC45 at 25kts plus

by Richard Gladwell on 23 Jan 2011
Murray Jones gets a turn on the handlebars - Auckland (NZL) - 34th America’s Cup - AC45 sea trial Day 4 ACEA - Photo Gilles Martin-Raget © http://photo.americascup.com/

Murray Jones is referred to as 'The Captain' in Oracle Racing circles. A recent convert from Team Alinghi, Jones is one of New Zealand's most accomplished sailors going right back into the 470 class where he and Andy Knowles were the NZ nomination for the 1980 Olympics in Moscow.

Sail-World caught up with him, just after he stepped onto the dock, after just the second day of sailing aboard the prototype AC45 where they were clocked at over 25 knots and probably broke the 30kt barrier.

SW: What speeds did you hit out there today?

Jones: I am not sure with all the spray it was a bit hard to see, but I think we were doing 25kts comfortably a lot of the time. We had plenty on, so we weren't really looking. But the very high 20's I would say. It was great. Good fun. And the boat performed really well - we're very, very happy.

SW: Did you have any incidents out there?

Jones: No, none at all. There was just some fine tuning of a few lashings, once things settled in. But it was great. We could do bearaways in plenty of breeze.

SW: How does it compare to that last catamaran you sailed on?

Jones: It is so hard to compare, they are different animals. Just because of the size. The load are different. The loads are so small in the AC45 that it is just a different game. I haven't sailed with a wing before - aside from the last two days. But it makes it a lot easier that's for sure. Especially when you bear away, you just feel that things don't load up, and the de-power is immediate.

SW: How do you trim the wing?

Jones: We are just trimming it straight off the boom, with a mainsheet or whatever you like to call it - just straight off the boom to a winch, and that is just trimming it in an out. Then you control the camber and twist. So there are three controls, it is very simple actually.

We were playing around a bit. I wouldn't say we were in race mode, because we were discussing what we would try every now and then and playing with the depth in the wing.


SW: How does she perform downwind, is it a matter of sheeting in and hanging on?

Jones: It was actually easier with the gennaker up than with the wing alone, because we had more lift in the bow. We are pushing the bow down a little when we are wingsail alone. Not that it is dangerously at all. But when the gennaker was up, it was really comfortable. It feels very good in that respect.

If you have a look at the boat, there is a lot of bow in front of the mainbeam, and she carries her fullness quite well forward. That was the concept of the boat - to be able to sail it in winds like we had today (20-25kts) and more. This is our first day out in any breeze, so you can imagine how we will be pushing it once we have sailed her a lot more in the next 3-4 months.

SW: How does she feel in the tacks. From our perspective she looked remarkably fast.

Jones: She just feels very light and unloaded. I think that is one of the great things about the wing, that as you come up through the breeze, there is very little drag, so the boat just continues through and doesn't slow down. With a lot of multihulls, when you see them tack, they struggle to get through once they get slow, but with the wingsail, it just cruises through, and there is no real drag on it once you go through head to wind, and so you don't lose the speed.

SW: How about gybing?

Jones: She was very docile! The first gybe we did was in 25kts!

Sadly, at that point 'The Captain' had to return to his 'ship' as she was hooked up for the lift ashore.

InSunSport - NZNorth Technology - Southern SparsHarken and Fosters -  Harken Winches

Related Articles

America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 30 Apr
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
34th America's Cup - Oracle pumping claims are flawed - Update
Claims that Oracle Team USA broke the manual propulsion rules in the 34th America's Cup are seriously flawed Claims by an American journalist, Bruce Knecht that Oracle Team USA broke the manual propulsion rules in the 2013 America's Cup are seriously flawed. The allegations received considerable airplay in New Zealand on Friday and over the weekend.
Posted on 6 Mar
America's Cup - Another win for Oracle Team USA in California Courts
America's Cup Defender, Oracle Team USA has been successful in its legal effort to swat away another complaint America's Cup Defender, Oracle Team USA has been successful in its legal effort to swat away a complaint brought by former Oracle Team USA crew member, Matthew Mitchell. Mitchell's complaint against his former team was dismissed by a San Francisco Court on Wednesday. The amount of damage/injury claimed was stated as $400,000.
Posted on 12 Feb
America's Cup - No action against Kiwi sailor, but rule changes made
The International Sailing Federation has changed the process for Rule 69 Hearings in line with CAS recommendations One of the Oracle Team USA crew members found by the International Jury to have been involved in boat tampering activities with the America's Cup World Series regattas ahead of the 34th America's Cup has not been further penalised by the International Sailing Federation.
Posted on 19 Nov 2015
America's Cup - ISAF and Cup Jury summonsed by California Court
Five members of the AC34 Int Jury and the Int Sailing Federation have been summonsed by a San Francisco Court The International Sailing Federation, the controlling body for world sailing, and the five individuals who made up the International Jury for the 34th America's Cup have been summonsed by a San Francisco Court, to answer a lawsuit.
Posted on 9 Sep 2015
Dean Barker's Blog - Back into the racing
Five times America's Cup helmsman Dean Barker gives his view on his split with Team New Zealand and life since Writing on his blog at Kiwi Yachting Consultants' websites, of which he is a substantial shareholder and director, five times America's Cup helmsman Dean Barker gives his view on life since Team NZ. This is my first blog for quite some time. In fact since September last year when I was still a part of Team NZ racing in Istanbul for the Extreme Sailing Series.
Posted on 20 Apr 2015
America's Cup- Mitchell fires new salvo at ISAF Jury Officials
Matthew Mitchellhas advised that he has filed complaints of Gross Misconduct against all five Americas Cup jury members Matthew Mitchell, previously a member of Oracle Team USA, has issued a media release advising that he has filed complaints of Gross Misconduct against all five Americas Cup jury members with the sport's International governing body (ISAF). This action follows on from his recent claims about the actions of another team member Simeon Tienpont, now with Challenger Luna Rossa.
Posted on 5 Feb 2015
America's Cup- Oracle crew mate lodges ISAF complaint against Tienpont
Last Friday, former OTUSA's Matthew Mitchell issued a media release stating that he has lodged a complaint with the ISAF Last Friday, former Oracle Team USA team member, Matthew Mitchell issued a media release stating that he has lodged a complaint with the International Sailing Federation over the actions of a fellow crew member, Simeon Tienpont, and inaction by the International Jury for the 34th America's Cup, in San Francisco.
Posted on 28 Jan 2015
America's Cup- Oracle crew mate lodges complaint against Tienpont
OTUSA's Matthew Mitchell has issued a media release stating that he has lodged a complaint with the ISAF Former Oracle Team USA team member, Matthew Mitchell has issued a media release stating that he has lodged a complaint with the International Sailing Federation over the actions of a fellow crew member, Simeon Tienpont, and inaction by the International Jury for the 34th America's Cup, in San Francisco.
Posted on 23 Jan 2015