Please select your home edition
Edition
Zhik ZKG

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.

Ancasta Ker 33 660x82PredictWind.com 2014Mackay Boats

Related Articles

America's Cup - Emirates Team NZ give first look at the pedaling AC50
Emirates Team New Zealand formally christened their new AC50 America's Cup Challenger on a rainy Auckland afternoon. Emirates Team New Zealand formally christened their new AC50 America's Cup Challenger on a rainy Auckland afternoon. The team has been sailing for the previous two days making news headlines after it was revealed in Sail-World.com that the AC50 would become only the second yacht in America's Cup history to use pedal power.
Posted on 16 Feb
America's Cup - Kiwis sign Olympic Cyclist for the Tour de Bermuda
Ttop cyclist Simon van Velthooven, a 2012 Olympic Bronze cycling medallist had been signed by the America's Cup team Emirates Team New Zealand put in a second foiling display on Auckland's Waitemata harbour ahead of the official launching of their AC50 tomorrow. With brighter skies the cycling team took their places on the pedalstals and used leg power to provide the hydraulic pressure necessary to run the AC50's control systems for the foils and wingsail.
Posted on 15 Feb
A Q&A with Shawn Macking about the StPYC’s Sailing Center and OD fleet
I talked with Shawn Macking, the StPYC’s waterfront director, to learn how the club is getting more people out sailing. I caught up with Shawn Macking, waterfront director of the St. Petersburg Yacht Club, via email to learn more about the club’s Sailing Center, its hefty investment in a new fleet of ten J/70s, and how the StPYC is using this infrastructure to expose more people to the sport we all love.
Posted on 13 Feb
A Q&A with Karen Angle about the 2017 Conch Republic Cup race to Cuba
I caught up with Karen Angle, executive director of the Conch Republic Cup, to learn more about this exciting event. If you’re like me and have arrived at saturation with winter’s cold rain and snow, imagine racing to Cuba as part of a 13-day cross-cultural event that’s designed to lower barriers of entry at a time when some Americans see a need for taller walls. I caught up with Karen Angle, executive director of the Conch Republic Cup, to learn more about this exciting event and the adventures it affords.
Posted on 23 Jan
A Q&A with Anna Tunnicliffe about her return to competitive sailing
I talked with Anna Tunnicliffe before the Sailing World Cup Miami to learn about her return to Olympic-class sailing. Anna Tunnicliffe won gold at the Beijing 2008 Olympics in the Laser Radial before shifting her sights to the Women’s Match Racing event for the London 2012 Olympics. Here, she came up shy of expectation and left sailing for the CrossFit Games, but now she is returning to her roots. I talked with Tunnicliffe before the Sailing World Cup Miami to learn about her return to Olympic-class sailing.
Posted on 23 Jan
A Q&A with Dick Neville, Quantum Key West Race Week’s RC chairman
I caught up with Dick Neville, Race Committee chair for the Quantum Key West Race Week, to learn more about the event. For the past 30 years, international sailors have gathered in Key West, Florida, each January for Key West Race Week, a regatta that has achieved legendary status due to its calendar dates, its location, and the impressive level of competition and racecourse management that this storied event offers. I caught up with Dick Neville, Race Committee chair for this year’s Quantum KWRW, to learn more.
Posted on 16 Jan
A Q&A with Daniel Smith, the Clipper Race’s new deputy race director
I talked with Daniel Smith, the Clipper Round The World Race’s new deputy race director, to learn more about his role. I was fortunate to sail with Daniel Smith [36, SCO], skipper of “Derry~Londonderry~Doire” for the 2015/2016 edition of the Clipper Round The World Race, when the fleet reached Seattle last spring. Now, Smith has been hired as the event’s deputy race director-a job that will test many of the skills that he polished as a skipper. I caught up with Smith via email to learn more about his new job.
Posted on 9 Jan
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Suck it up, sunshine!
The 72nd start of the iconic blue water classic had 300,000 spectators lining the foreshores of Sydney Harbour The 72nd start of the iconic blue water classic had 300,000 spectators lining the foreshores of Sydney Harbour, another two million watching on TV, and the constant buzz and whir of media helicopters overhead. 88 boats, from Australia, USA, UK, Germany, Sweden, Russia, Japan, Korea, China, oh and New Zealand, had lined up on three start lines.
Posted on 31 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race - More merriment on the airwaves
Here are more examples of merriment on the airwaves between the boats and Hobart Race Control So on December 29, 2016, after the River Derwent had let just three boats home (Perpetual Loyal, Giacomo and Scallywag, all inside the old race record, she went to sleep for a lot of the day. This made it frustrating for the sailors, some of whom saw the lighter side. So after seeing some of those in Dark & Stormy, here are more examples of merriment on the airwaves between the boats and HRC
Posted on 29 Dec 2016
Sydney Hobart Race-Dark and stormy, well because it is Dark and Stormy
Proving that there is a lighter side to the frustrations that is a race to Hobart Well it is now dark and the rain 'storms' have passed, but proving that there is a lighter side to the frustrations that is a race to Hobart, the custom Murray 37, Dark & Stormy had a wonderful exchange on the radio. Quite possibly it was co-owner and Navigator Terry Courts on the VHF in the super-frank exchange with Hobart Race Control at around 1928hrs on 29/12/16.
Posted on 29 Dec 2016