sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : Gladwell’s Line: America’s Cup – Emirates Team NZ AC72 unveiled +Video
Gladwell’s Line: America’s Cup – Emirates Team NZ AC72 unveiled +Video

'Nick Holroyd (Design Co-ordinator) and Grant Dalton (CEO) in front of the first AC72 for Emirates Team NZ'    Richard Gladwell    Click Here to view large photo

Our first America’s Cup build preview was in mid-1985. On show was the first of what were to become the Plastic Fantastics, upside down in a shed in the Auckland suburb of Pakuranga.

The media group were chaperoned around an upturned hull, which the New Zealand Challenge principals would have us believe was a wooden 12metre.

Where it all started - the 'wooden' 12 metre in mid-1985. Photo: Terry Fong -     Click Here to view large photo
Reality was that we were shown a plug for the first fibreglass 12metre ever built. Then, as now, it was case of look, but we can’t tell you much.

That was 27 years ago. It seems like last week.

Today, was a similar show, and minimal tell - with the invited media being left to join up the dots for themselves. A fraught exercise – even on a good day.

The tour began with a look around the Emirates Team NZ base, which now consists of the old Alinghi building and a lot of flat concrete. The rest has come down.

Emirates Team NZ CEO, Grant Dalton, says they didn’t want to drop the old Team NZ base – which goes back to the 1993 era. It was built in part with the team’s own crew – some of whom in pre-professional sailing days - had real jobs as builders and other construction related trades.

Emirates Team NZ base facility in Auckland where the wingsail is contained, ahead of the AC72 catamaran launch in July 2012. -  Richard Gladwell   Click Here to view large photo
That Black Shed was very much off limits to journalists in the early days. In its later years you could almost hear the walls talk. It was a special place. Like a church. But it is no more.

In its place will go a mobile shed – comprised of containers for walls, but each fitted out as a workshop and a white plastic roof. The first shed is already up, and houses the pieces for the wingsail, of which Emirates Team New Zealand will have two.

A look inside the wingsail shed is like stepping into an aircraft factory. The 40 metre AC72 wingsail is much bigger than the AC45 model. Emirates Team New Zealand’s first wingsail was transported in pieces – a bit like a model plane kit and then assembled on site.

It’s a two element wing, in that it has front and back rotating pieces, and is similar in many ways to the giant wing that powered USA-17 in the 2010 America’s Cup.

The lower front two pieces are most impressive - standing maybe four metres high, on their leading edge. Trying to mentally assemble the package, to visualise the finished wing, is a daunting exercise and not for the first time that day we give up the mental visualisation gymnastics.

The AC72 hull in position ready to receive the main beam at Cookson Boats -  Richard Gladwell   Click Here to view large photo

To go sailing, the AC72 wingsail will be dropped onto the hull platform using a mobile crane, and the whole boat transferred to the water in a similar way to the AC45’s. Once afloat the boat will be assisted from the Viaduct by special inflatables, designed more as tugs than chase boats.

Talk turns to where the on-board power is going to come from, and how much a grinder can produce. 'Someone like Rob Waddell (a world champion rower and Olympic Gold medallist) can produce 1000watts for about 25 seconds max,' says Dalton.

'They then have to throttle back to about 800watts which they can maintain for a longer period. Everyone on the boat will have to grind at some stage, except for Dean (the helmsman).'

We recall the brave comment of Mike Drummond, Oracle Racing’s lead designer who was tasked on a similar point question during a question and answer session on one of the many no-race days in the 2010 America’s Cup. Drummond also talked about grinder output in terms of watts but added 'a grinder produces about the power of a domestic sewing machine' – putting things in their proper perspective. Fortunately there was only media in the room at the time.

Cookson Boats is located about 15 minutes drive from the Emirates Team NZ base. -  Richard Gladwell   Click Here to view large photo
The base tour over, it’s out to Cookson Boats yard on Auckland’s North Shore – about a 15 minute drive from downtown Auckland.

Inside the Cookson shed the AC72 awaits with her two hulls on the floor ready for the main beam to be attached.

It’s an odd feeling. Somehow we expected the catamaran to be bigger, but maybe the slimness of the hulls are deceiving.

Next it’s a quick take on the beam of the boat – which can only be imagined - with one hull positioned on one side of the shed area, and the other opposite.

There’s a couple of plywood platforms in between the hulls, ready to support the mainbeam while the boat is preassembled. Mentally we place a large piece of curved carbon between the two support platforms and another mind picture begins to emerge.

The cockpits in each hull where the grinders and crew will work are a little unusual. Well, they’re different from what they had on Alinghi 5, and different from the AC45 (on which they are non-existent).

TVNZ’s Martin Tasker interviews Mick Cookson of Cookson Boats -  Richard Gladwell   Click Here to view large photo
Downstairs at Cooksons, we are shown the mainbeam sitting on a small truck waiting to be taken to the level above. It is an interesting piece of kit. Not the standard beam that we have been used to seeing on the AC45’s, and again it’s different from the Alinghi 5 approach.

Trying to mentally construct the AC72, from being shown a series of components spread across two locations, is not an easy task. All will be revealed when the AC72 is launched around 21st July in an evening ceremony, open to the public – and should be very spectacular.

Then it’s back upstairs to the bows of the AC72 where the interviews take place with two TV crews working over Dalton and design co-ordinator, Nick Holroyd. Builder Mick Cookson is also interrogated on camera. Then it’s our turn.

Grant Dalton: 'Expect 40kts'

Grant Dalton rattles off some statistics about the time to involved in the whole process – essentially it is about three times longer to build the AC72 than for an America’s Cup monohull. He gets that by adding the 25,000 hours of wingsail build time to the 40,000 hours platform build time – 65,000 man hours. Plus about 50,000 design hours – an exercise which has been underway since October 2010.

Launch date is provisionally set down for July 21, and construction of the second boat will start soon after that.

This boat will be fully fitted at Cooksons, disassembled and taken to the Viaduct for final assembly.

Dalton opens the interview by saying says their AC72 will not be dissimilar in appearance to the AC 45 - aside from the scale of the boat.

With 55tonnes of righting moment – which translates directly to power – the AC72 is a lot of boat to handle. She will race just 11 crew, when 20 would be more appropriate.

Racing in the America’s Cup in San Francisco will all be about efficiency, he says - given the AC72 is so under crewed.

Turning to the speeds of the AC72, Dalton says they are expecting to see 40kts in 20 knots of breeze downwind, and mentions 18kts upwind.

The glory days of the America’s Cup, with two boats hitting into the breeze, bows prancing, as one tries to get ascendency over the other, are gone in the short course, fast boat, America’s Cup.



'There has to be a premium on manoeuvrability,' Dalton explains. 'There is no point in having massive horsepower and massive complexity. You just won’t be able to use it. If the boat is too complex, you won’t have time to pull the wing in to get the power on.

'The crew have to be able to sail efficiently. The whole ergonomics of sailing the boat, or racing mechanics as we call it, is a really critical part of the boat. The most critical,' he says, emphasising the point.

In response to another question he explains there are no baselines for any of what has had to be done with the AC72. 'It’s all whiteboard stuff', he says.

Nick Holroyd: '35 man years of design'

Then we turn to Nick Holroyd, design coordinator for the AC72 project.

He repeats the design team hours – over 50,000 thus far. Or put another way - 35 man years of design time, using 25 full time equivalent designers. 'Having a new class rule has shifted the balance a little. We dropped crew numbers from 25 in the monohulls to about a dozen, but gained on design team numbers.'

Given that the team have started with a white sheet of paper, Holroyd agrees that the trade-off has been on boat speed and cornering ability, and trying to gauge where the opposition might be.

'What Team New Zealand has been traditionally good at is working the design team and sailing team together,' he says. 'The SL33 platform that we have been running has been a really strong component of that and gives us a common language. We can design something theoretically and the crew can come back and tell us how it worked in reality. At the end of the day we are trying to give the sailing team the boat they are after, to do the job they think they need to be able to do.'



Holroyd says that the emphasis with the test program once the AC72 is launched will be strongly on racing. That initial period will be spent on straight line speed, getting systems reliable and the boat mechanically reliable.

'The power of these boats for the physical bodies on board is enormous,’ he says. 'Understanding how to physically muscle them around the course is a huge part of the game.'

One of the biggest challenges for the design team has been what Holroyd calls 'weight accounting'.

'Exceed a certain weight and you don’t have an AC72,' he explains. 'We have been working the weight budget to within 1%. We have a very, very tight control of engineering weights.'

Turning back to the SL33 campaign and the interaction between the designers and sailors, Holroyd says the design team always give the sailors the expected performance data ahead of the sailing team testing a new feature.

'Then they come back and tell us what they saw or didn’t see on the water,' he explains before repeating the mantra about the role of the design team being to give the sailing team the product they need to do the job on the race course.

On that note the show is over.

We walk away, feeling much the same as we did in 1985.

Very impressed.

Emirates Team New Zealand lead the way in the fourth race of the regatta on day two of the America’s Cup World Series in Naples. -  Chris Cameron-ETNZ   Click Here to view large photo


by Richard Gladwell

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=97836

7:19 PM Wed 30 May 2012GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
2013 America's Cup

Related News Stories:

28 May 2012  Golden Gate Bridge Anniversary - Oracle Team USA carry special message
26 May 2012  Artemis Racing's AC72 wing sustains damage
25 May 2012  America's Cup: Oracle Racing move wingsail for shipping to USA
23 May 2012  America's Cup: Entry deadline extended by two months
21 May 2012  Fisher's View: Day 4 ACWS Venice - Big crowds for slow day in Venice
21 May 2012  Emirates Team NZ: Only four boats score in in final race in Venice
21 May 2012  AC World Series Venice – Memorable final day for Energy Team
20 May 2012  Emirates Team NZ: Battle looms for a last-race decider in ACWS Venice
20 May 2012  Fisher's View: Day 3 ACWS Venice - Light winds make for short courses
20 May 2012  America’s Cup World Series Venice – Difficult Day 3 for Energy Team
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Day 14 onboard Team Alvimedica. Our boat smells a bit better this morning and I’m not sure if it’s because the gnarly concoction of freeze-dried brew in the bow has been sacrificed to the sea along with some of Mark, Charlie, and Alberto’s head hair, or if it’s because those three have had a complete bathing following said sacrifice to King Neptune. ... [more]  

A remarkable list of contributors to sailing in the U.S. were presented with US Sailing’s highest honors during Friday night’s Awards Dinner, presented by Rolex, at the Hilton Milwaukee City Center. ... [more]  

Join the crew of the ORMA60 TeamVodafoneSailing as they slash 20 minutes off their previous record for the PIC Coastal Classic on Friday. The Coastal Classic is a 119nm course from Auckland to Russell in the Bay of Islands. Originally conceived as a drag race between multihulls and monohulls ... [more]  

Argo Group Gold Cup - Light air drama in Bermuda by Alpari World Match Racing Tour
A frontal system edging its way towards Bermuda resulted in light winds, a grey sky and racing eventually being canned early, but not before the remaining Quarter Final flights had been completed at the Argo Group Gold Cup, the sixth stage of the Alpari World Match Racing Tour. ... [more]  

Searching for breeze and pressure on the race course was a game of snakes and ladders for young competitors at the Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup today. While grappling with the need for patience and consistency – two requirements for sailing well in light air – many sailors were tested during the third day of racing on Bermuda’s Great Sound. ... [more]  

The penultimate day of the La Torche PWA Grand Slam saw stunning sunshine as the mercury hit almost twenty degrees. In the afternoon seven of the world’s best sailors took to the water for a radical tow-in contest, which kept the crowds entertained with the massive aerial antics on display. ... [more]  

The 35th Rolex Middle Sea Race was one to remember. Not only for international fleet that, for the third year in a row, set a record number of entries, but for the array of conditions that the yachts faced. From no wind to too much; from flat calm to turbulent seas; from going nowhere to flying fast and furious: the 606-nm mythical racecourse offered everything. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Day 14 onboard Team SCA. I’m discovering there are two types of days offshore: the days where not much happens, and the days where so much happens it’s hard to believe that’s just one day! Yesterday was one of those days and I’m unsure where to begin! ... [more]  

Day four at the 2014 RS:X Youth Worlds in Clearwater, Florida, and the sound of the day was that of racers whooping and hollering past the race committee boats (two imposing 44-ft power catamarans provided by event sponsor MarineMax) in a breeze that high-wind specialists had been waiting for all week. ... [more]  

The prize giving ceremony for the Rolex Middle Sea Race was held at the Mediterranean Conference Centre, one of Valletta's most historic venues. Honoured guests included: The Minister of Tourism; The Hon Dr. Edward Zammit Lewis. ... [more]  

Dongfeng Race Team is putting in a dominant performance at the China Cup International Regatta, with scores of 1,1,1,2 so far in IRC Division B, with last year’s winner Whiskey Jack in second. The Jeanneau Sunfast 3600 is skippered by the boat’s designer, Frenchman Daniel Andrieu. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Heading for the speedway to Cape Town *Feature by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz
The Volvo Ocean race fleet are now all around the turning mark of Fernando de Noronha, and have continued down the Brazilian coast. Currently the first three yachts, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, Team Brunel and Team Vestas Wind are all travelling at 17kts, as they travel around the St Helena High. ... [more]  

2014 Optimist World Championship - The first stage of the OptiWorlds Argentina 2014 schedule has finished today. The fleet was divided in three equal parts: the first third is gold, the second one is silver and the last fleet is bronze. This individual regatta continues next Tuesday. ... [more]  

2014 - 15 Volvo Ocean Race - Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing won the race to the Equator late on Thursday and were in good shape to make the turning mark of Fernando de Noronha at the head of the Volvo Ocean Race fleet as their six rivals were still playing catch-up despite finally escaping the Doldrums. ... [more]  

After more than 17 years with the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Jerome has decided to pursue other professional challenges. ... [more]  

2014 Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup - Stamina and determination were key factors for the competitors racing in day two of the Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup today. The 14 international guests and 26 young Bermudians finished five races on Bermuda’s Great Sound. This is a test of endurance for any sailor especially young ones. ... [more]  

With less than a day left to reach the turning mark at Fernando de Nonoha, 220nm off the coast of Brazil, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing has retained the lead she built in the Doldrums. She is unlikely to be headed, although the second boat on the water, Team Brunel is projected to be less than an hour behind at Fernando ... [more]  

2014 International Masters Regatta - Anyone heading out to San Diego Bay this weekend is likely to witness some of sailing’s most legendary skippers show exactly why they’ve earned the reputation as the best in the business. Established in 1975 by Don Trask, the International Masters Regatta features the best master sailors from around the world and is being hosted by the San Diego Yacht Club ... [more]  

One flight of the Quarter Finals was sailed Friday afternoon following the completion of the Qualifying Rounds and the selection of opponents and draw for boats. The Quarter Finals set Ian Williams against Marek Stanczyk, Taylor Canfield against Steffan Lindberg, Eric Monnin against Pierre Morvan, and an all Swedish pairing of Bjorn Hansen against Johnie Berntsson. ... [more]  

What could be better than racing for three days with over 2000 of the world's best sailors? How about racing for four days! The St.Maarten Heineken Regatta is proud to announce that their pre-event, the Gill Commodore's Cup, is accepting entries in all boat categories (excluding Lottery Class). ... [more]  

The seventh day of the La Torche PWA Grand Slam saw the light winds continue, despite a promising forecast for today. In the late afternoon a few of the sailors took part in a tow-in training session as there is scope to run a tow-in contest tomorrow, with the forecast looking glassy. ... [more]  

Picture postcard perfect conditions returned to Bermuda for the third and final day of Qualifying at the Argo Group Gold Cup, the sixth stage of the 2014 Alpari World Match Racing Tour. After yesterday’s torrential rain, Hamilton Harbour was bathed in glorious sunshine and breeze that by lunchtime was gusting up to the mid-teens. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Leaders pass Fernando and head for Cape Town *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
Volvo Ocean Race Control reports that the lead boats in the 40,000nm race have rounded, or rather passed, the turning point off Fernando de Noronha. They are now proceeding down the Brazilian coast, to round the back of the South Atlantic high pressure zone , and have what is expected to be a fast ride to the Leg 1 finish in Cape Town. ... [more]  

Melges 32 Gold Cup on the horizon by International Melges 32 Class Association
With a fleet and sailors as diverse as the nightlife on Ocean Avenue, the Melges 32 Gold Cup, hosted by the Coconut Grove Sailing Club kicks off in just two weeks, featuring eighteen ultra-high performance Melges 32 teams from nine different countries. ... [more]  

Rolex Middle Sea Race - Keeping a good watch by Media Royal Malta Yacht Club
Peter Dimech, Principal Race Officer and Race Chair spoke about the storm that raged through the Rolex Middle Sea Race fleet. “The remaining yachts racing in the Rolex Middle Sea Race are expected to arrive at the Royal Malta Yacht Club by today and tomorrow. Whilst the wind speed has decreased, the sea state is still significant and we are keeping a close watch on the yachts still at sea. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Onboard Team Alvimedica. I’d hate to come across as being impossible to please but after days of wanting out of the doldrums, days of struggling with routines, with sleep, with a lack of regularity and consistency to our schedules, and of course--predictability to the weather—we’re 'out' and still trying to find it ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Day 13 onboard Team SCA. I’m unsure if I should be nervous, excited, stressed, or thrilled today. As today I get to have fish guts smeared over me only to then become officially apart of King Neptune’s kingdom. ... [more]  

There was a shakeup at the top on day three of the 2014 RS:X Youth Worlds in Clearwater, Florida! Fully recharged thanks to the lay day yesterday, all competitors were eager to enter the final stretch of the competition in Clearwater, and the planing conditions in the forecast certainly contributed to the excitement on the beach. ... [more]  

The opening day of the 105-boat China Cup International Regatta saw old rivalries renewed in the Beneteau 40.7 class, as Vatti Sailing stole victory from Vanke Longcheer in the opening Simpson Marine Passage Race from Hong Kong to Shenzhen. ... [more]  

Team Alvimedica Navigational Strategist, Anderson Reggio, explains the issues ahead of the crews in the remaining half of leg 1 of the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race. After the Equator and Fernando, the weather looks to be shaping up to be pretty standard for the South Atlantic. The St Helena High which typically dominates this body of water is the main driver for breeze in the short term. ... [more]  

The next landmark, or ‘sea mark’ if you will, for Leg 1 is crossing the Equator, as Team Alvimedica continue to make their way south to round Fernando de Noronha off the coast of Brazil. Crossing this latitude is not like crossing any other on their way around the world, but has special significance for sailors who have never crossed the 0° parallel of latitude. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 - Mapfre cruzará el Ecuador hacia las 13:00 aproximadamente. ... [more]  

Argo Group Gold Cup - A front slowly crossing Bermuda brought with it an overcast sky and rain squalls. Nonetheless, despite squelching their way ashore completely soaked, the Group 2 crews enjoyed the morning’s stronger breeze, the wind less shifty having veered into the southwest overnight, blowing down Hamilton Harbour rather than across it. ... [more]  

RenaissanceRe Junior Gold Cup Day 1 - Strong performances and jitters
PIC Coastal Classic: TeamVodafoneSailing smashes course record
Argo Group Gold Cup - Canfield and Williams first into Quarter Finals
La Torche PWA Grand Slam - Waiting game continues on day 6
Volvo Ocean Race - Anything can happen in the Doldrums
Volvo Ocean Race - Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing first to exit the Doldrums
Volvo Ocean Race - Day 12 for Team Alvimedica
Rolex Sydney Hobart - Luna Sea 100th entry for 628 nautical mile race
Student Yachting World Cup - England emerges victorious
RORC Transatlantic Race fast approaching
Star Sailors League Finals - Three American greats to compete
America's Cup: Airbus and Oracle Team USA forge technology partnership
Rolex Middle Sea Race - Another dramatic day
Rolex Middle Sea Race - Artie confirmed as overall winner
Argo Group Gold Cup - Near perfect start for GAC Pindar
Volvo Ocean Race - A nightmare for sailors
The 2014 Severne Starboard Aloha Classic is coming...
Rolex Middle Sea Race 2014 - Artie's heroic return
Argo Group Gold Cup - Slender lead for Marek Stanczyk
Ben Ainslie Racing foiling on the Solent + Video *Feature
METS names DAME Award nominees   
La Torche PWA Grand Slam - A day of rest for wave sailors   
Rolex Middle Sea Race - A day of reckoning for the fleet   
Volvo Ocean Race - Playing the Doldrums lottery   
Volvo Ocean Race - Dongfeng Race Team takes on the Doldrums   
Volvo Ocean Race - Team Alvimedica, somewhere in the windless ITCZ   
Rolex Middle Sea Race - Artie gunning for glory   
Volvo Ocean Race - Another perspective from Team SCA   
Rolex Farr 40 World Championship - Success in San Francisco   
RS:X Youth World Windsurfing Championship - Intense racing + Video   
Rolex Middle Sea Race - Big breeze and lumpy seas   
The first sail that changes lives   
Volvo Ocean Race: Blogs from the Boats - Leg 1, Day 10 plus Videos *Feature   
Volvo Ocean Race: Leg 1 turns inside out in Doldums *Feature   
34th Student Yachting World Cup La Rochelle 2014 - Fifth race day   
2014 Argo Group Gold Cup - Match racers defy Gonzalo   
Volvo Ocean Race: Big gains for two boats in Doldrums *Feature   
Argo Group Gold Cup - Qualifying Groups set   
Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup - Kids breeze past Hurricane Gonzalo   
DSS to revolutionise IMOCA 60s, both new and old   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT