Please select your home edition
Edition
Kilwell - 3

Louis Vuitton Cup-The Demolition Derby continues in San Francisco

by Bob Fisher on 19 Aug 2013
Team New Zealand with shore crew on board to figure out what happened in race number two at the Americas Cup Louis Vuitton Finale on August 18, 2013 in San Francisco, California.

As if the damage inflicted to the boats on the opening day of this possible 13-race series to decide the challenger for the 34th America’s Cup was not bad enough, the decimation continued on the second day.

This time, the biggest sufferer was Emirates Team New Zealand, generally regarded as the bullet-proof boat.

The fragility of the AC-72s arises from the complexity of the operating systems – it is the delicate balance between form and function on the one hand and minimum weight on the other. All parts have to be strong enough to be able to deal with extremes well beyond the norm, but unnecessary weight on a racing multihull is an anathema.

Consequently there will be failures, and generally they will result in the affected boat having to pull out of the race. With two races each day, any failure could be doubly punitive. On the opening day, Luna Rossa was saved from having to claim her one-and-only lay day when the wind over the course exceeded the 21-knot limit.

same was true for the Kiwis on day two, which was just as well for them. There were many more than the nine men of the crew on board the boat, out near the Golden Gate Bridge, when Race Director Iain Murray announced that once more the wind strength exceeded the limit – a 2.7 knot ebb tide did not help either as that has to be added as the important factor is the apparent wind.

The race started normally with Chris Draper in Luna Rossa attempting to gain a 'hook' to leeward of Emirates Team New Zealand. But Barker was sharp enough to repulse this and aimed for the line, arriving marginally ahead of the Italians. The gap between them at the first mark was four seconds – two boat’s lengths.

Downwind, ETNZ drew away to be 23 seconds in front at the second gate. At the end of the next leg, as she approached the windward mark, aided by the strong ebb tide, ETNZ slowed to a stop – the crew had lost the use of the hydraulics that control the daggerboards and foils due to an electronic failure in the system. It was terminal for the Kiwis, and Luna Rossa was soon passing them to leeward and rounding Mark 3.

With a support boat alongside and several of the maintenance crew climbing on to the trampoline to examine the problem, there was no alternative for Barker but to retire from the race and allow Draper and the Luna Rossa crew to finish the race, claim a point and draw level 1 – 1 for the series. It was the first race win in a Louis Vuitton Cup final for this team since 2000.

Earlier in the day, the gremlins struck the defender. As the two Oracle Team USA boats were manoeuvring in the pre-start of their practice race, the port rudder of Ben Ainslie’s boat (the elder of the two) snapped off immediately below the hull. His race was over. The rudder had suffered damage the previous day when Ainslie had snagged the rode of a navigation mark when attempting to avoid a spectator boat. 'It was either the boat or the buoy,' joked Ainslie, 'I think I made the right choice.'

The seemingly superficial damage was repaired overnight and repainted, but no one had suspected the deeper damage. The breakage occurred when the skipper yanked the rudder hard to bear away to go for the start line.





Schaefer 2016 Ratchet 300x250Kilwell - 5Barz Optics - Kids range

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 23 Apr
Terrific battle in Oyster Regatta Antigua finale
On the final day, two of the three Classes were so close that the winners were decided on the last race. On the final day, two of the three Classes were so close that the winners were decided on the last race. Spectacular sailing conditions prevailed with a brisk 20 knots of wind from the south east. Oyster yachts are built to sail the oceans and revelled in the conditions.
Posted on 12 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