Cupdates and a VOR report—Sailing News from the U.S. and Beyond
Luna Rossa Challenge commanded international sailing headlines since they unveiled their challenger AC72 last Friday in Auckland. The Italian-flagged team's shimmering, metallic silver-painted AC72 shares a basic design package with Emirates Team New Zealand (ETNZ), and will also share the same training waters as it's highly suspected that the two teams will be lining up against one another, once the Italians gain some valuable on-the-water time and begin to unravel the complexities of sailing a wingsail-powered AC72 at full throttle.
|Launch of the new Luna Rossa AC72 in Auckland, New Zealand. Luna Rossa/Studio Borlenghi ©|
'This is our fourth challenge for the America's Cup, certainly the most revolutionary compared to past ones,' said Luna Rossa Challenge's Team Principal, Patrizio Bertelli. 'Launching a yacht is still as exciting as ever, maybe even more so in this case because this boat is so technologically extreme, the outcome of state-of-the-art research and of a huge effort from the whole team.'
|Luna Rossa Challenge 2013 - Launch October 26, 2012 Auckland Sail-World.com/NZ ©|
According to reports, Luna Rossa Challenge enjoyed a party with some 350 guest to celebrate the Champaign-bottle-breaking ceremony (as well as the monumental amount of energy required to bring the boat online), but the team clearly understands the steep learning curve that it must face to be competitive with their soon-to-be Kiwi sparing partners. 'Today is a celebration day for all of us,' said Luna Rossa skipper, Max Sirena. 'Tomorrow we will begin the first structural tests on the water, and then, as soon as we complete our checks, we will start training.'
|USA AC 72 capsizes during training in San Francisco Bay and is pushed out of the bay by the tide current as the team try to salvage the platform. Oct 16, 2012 Guilain Grenier Oracle Team USA© |
And Stateside in Cup news, the America's Cup Management (ACM) has prepared an interesting and in-depth look at 'USA 17's' dramatic pitchpole capsize a couple weeks ago in their most recent installment of 'America's Cup Uncovered'. This week's multi-media 'magazine' report looks into the causes and ramifications of this flip for Oracle Racing, investigates mainstream media's handling of the event and checks in with key personal (including skipper Jimmy Spithill) about the incident. Get the full multimedia report, inside.
Also pitchpole-relaed, don't miss Richard Gladwell's in-depth look at what this accident (and one seriously mangled AC72) will mean for Oracle's attempt at defending the 34th Americas Cup. Interestingly, Gladwell's take is that 'USA 17' will not only see full repairs (her new wing is already under construction at Core Builders in New Zealand, with an estimated delivery date of January 2013) but also substantial modifications. These will likely include larger daggerboards (a la ETNZ), as well as a sailing platform that's less prone to twisting (and thus less efficient foiling). Get Gladwell's full take on the Oracle shake-up, in this issue.
|Emirates Team New Zealand. AC72 testing. Chris Cameron/ETNZ© |
And atop all of this headline-grabbing AC news comes a quiet report that ETNZ have racked up yet another one of their allotted (read: crucial) 2012/2013 AC72 training days, again sans accident or incident. To date, the Kiwi-flagged team has the most AC72 experience afloat, and it's becoming ever more obvious that their rules-interpretation (which was upheld earlier this month by the International Jury) of the class' expectation for daggerboard size was spot-on accurate (ETNZ uses significantly larger foils than Oracle Racing used on USA 17, thus making foiling easier and more stable for the Kiwis). Inside, be sure to check out the photographer Chris Cameron's great image gallery of the day's sailing.
Meanwhile, in Volvo Ocean Race (VOR) circles, the race management has prepared a couple of really cool videos detailing the construction process (and a few design details) of the new Farr-designed 65-foot One Design class, which will be used to contest the next two editions of this legendary ocean race. 'When you come down the dock you're gonna see a boat that's really cool,' said Patrick Shaughnessy, president of Farr Yacht Design. 'The stem shape has been styled to be emotional, forward looking and be relevant for years to come so it's a boat that's exciting and modern and it's gonna be iconic.'
|China Cup 2012. Stefano Gattini/ Studio Borlenghi|
Also inside, be sure to get the latest scoop on the RS:X Youth World Windsurfing Championships, the China Cup International Regatta and—for speed-sailing freaks—the latest happenings from Paul Larsen's Vestas Sailrocket 2 project, which is currently 'taking flight' in Walvis Bay, Namibia. And finally, don't miss our coverage of the Vendee Globe, which starts next Saturday in Les Sables d'Olonne, France. Enjoy!
May the four winds blow you safely home,
David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor
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