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America's Cup: Artemis Racing test new wingsail on Orma 60 in Valencia

'Artemis Racing steps the new wingsail on their ORMA60 in Valencia'    Pierre Orphanidis/VSail.info    Click Here to view large photo

Top European sailing site, www.vsail.info is reporting the launch and trial of a new wingsail by Artemis Racing. The Challenger of Record for the 34th America's Cup has stepped a wingsail of an unknown size.

Vsail.info's Pierre Orphanidis writes from Valencia: 'A major milestone in the 34th America’s Cup was reached earlier this morning in Valencia when Artemis Racing launched their winged Orma60 trimaran. Although their modified trimaran has already sailed on the waters off Valencia, today was the very first time it had the newly-built, IMMENSE, wing stepped on.

Conditions are perfect today in Valencia, with sunny, warm weather, and, most importantly, very light winds. The trimaran was launched around 11am without any apparent difficulty, at least as observed from our vantage point. According to our information, the trimaran might even take her maiden sail today, later in the afternoon, depending on the breeze.'

For the full story click here

There has been no announcement by Artemis Racing on the new wingsail, their website focuses on the use of the new wingsail extension which has already been trialled in Auckland. An announcement is expected on Wednesday.

Artemis Racing earlier made submissions to the International Jury, on the use of Surrogate boats by Emirates Team NZ and Luna Rossa, who are confined to using either AC45's or SL33's or other catamarans of less than 10 metres. But in the, at times, obtuse world of the America's Cup Artemis can use a 60ft platform for rig testing because their platform is a trimaran, rather than a catamaran type which is specifically prohibited in the Protocol. Artemis Racing could test a full size AC72 wing on their ORMA60 under the Protocol.

Meanwhile America's Cup blogger, Peter Rusch updates on action around some of the other America's Cup World Series teams:

Up until now, Artemis Racing skipper Terry Hutchinson and his crew had been two boat training in the AC45 catamarans. Over the past week or so, the team has been testing the wing extensions and reported back to Regatta Director Iain Murray that the extended version was good to go in winds up to 20 knots, so we can expect to see racing with the extensions in both Italian events.

Also in Europe, the French Energy Team has confirmed its crew for Naples, where Yann Guichard will again be handling the steering duties following on from a successful debut in San Diego. One significant crew change is the departure of Peter Greenhalgh, as Loïck Peyron explains: 'Peter is moving on, largely because of the difficulty we had in communicating on board. Even if Peter’s work has always been excellent, it is tricky talking two languages on the same boat in a race. I just hope that given his immense talent, we’ll be seeing him again in the circuit. The crew of Energy Team for Naples will therefore be entirely French-speaking, including Yann Guichard, Arnaud Jarlegan, Christophe André, Devan Le Bihan and Arnaud Psarofaghis.'

While Loïck gets the crew sorted out for Naples, his brother Bruno has been focussed on securing the necessary resources for the AC72 build and extended Louis Vuitton Cup campaign: 'We are looking at the idea of competing with a second AC45 next season, in order to build up a squad which will form the basis of our AC72 crew. We are therefore continuing to do our utmost to be there in San Francisco for the 2013 Louis Vuitton Cup… Looking at the overall situation, our team is ready and able to do well at every level, so everything is in place to ensure the French are present in the next America’s Cup. I should add that we are committed to the long term and while our goal is to be present in the 34th America’s Cup, it is also to prepare for the next one. That is why we want to remain hard at it and we will be trying to get partners together around our exceptional project.'

On the other side of the world, in China, the coastal town of Sanya is the site of China Team's training camp.

Veteran French multihull sailor Fred Le Peutrec (FRA) and young gun Phil Robertson (NZL) are competing for the skipper job in Naples, while the rest of the crew hone their skills. Wang Chaoyong, the chairman of China Team, says: 'We are fully committed to creating an environment for our sailors that will enable them to compete at the same level as their competitors. Training and practice is a key element of success and we will make sure that China Team sailors are ready for the upcoming races…'

And in the host city of the 34th America's Cup, San Francisco, Oracle Racing has just returned to work, opening its second training camp of 2012 on Monday. The team is training with both AC45 crews on San Francisco Bay for two weeks, before heading to Naples.

Luna Rossa Challenge, is scheduled to announce its two AC45 race crews on April 4. The Italian challenger will be making their America's Cup World Series debut in Naples, but the team has been hard at work in New Zealand over the winter, and should be well prepared to put on a good show for local fans, having spent significant time training alongside Emirates Team New Zealand.

For the fuller report click here


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8:10 PM Tue 13 Mar 2012GMT


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