Unless you've been living under a rock, or perhaps holding tightly to long-held beliefs that monohulls will command AC headlines for generations to come, you've likely heard this week's big news: AC34 will be sailed in 2013 in 72-foot hard-wing sail catamarans.
That's right — cats. Gone are the days when Nathaniel G. Herreshoff's Amaryllis (1876) was deemed an improper raceboat. Now, the best of the best will be quickly wrapping their heads around cat design, wing design, and certainly high-speed boathandling skills.
'This will be a competition for the Facebook generation, not the Flintstone generation,' said BMW/Oracle CEO Russell Coutts at the Defender's seminal press conference, which was held in Valencia at the team's base on Monday.
For sports fans who viewed the Cup as a stale leftover from days when a fit runner could out clip a 'racing' monohull, say hello to a Brave New World. For speed freaks who can't quite imagine match-racing maneuvers played out at 30-plus knots, buckle up. Your father's America's Cup this will not be.
The soft sailed Alinghi not the kind of boat you could sail in 30 knots of wind. Richard Gladwell
But first, get psyched for a play-off system of racing, which is slated to begin in 2011 (next summer!!), on identical, 45-foot hard-wing sail cats that are currently being built in New Zealand.
While there are myriad details still left to discover, as well as the glaring where involved, at least we now know what will be sailed and when. (N.B., the when involved is sending tremors through the community of sailors who are keeping a metaphorical candlelight vigil that AC34 will be played out on San Francisco Bay, as the time line could quite possibly prove to be too tight for the city to pull off. More on this later.)
And while the Challenger of Record, Vincenzo Onorato's Mascalzone Latino, seems happy with this announcement, it does beg the question of fairness. True, next summer's opening salvo on the 45-footers will help give teams, designers and sailors an important experience base, it's no secret that BMW/Oracle is now the world's reigning leader in high-speed multihull sailing using hard-wing sails.
Be sure to check out all of the great AC34 coverage that's packed into this issue. Richard Gladwell has done a great job drawing the threads together. The post press conference conversation with Russsell Coutts shed more light on the decision making process.
Also, check out Part One of a Sail-Word.com exclusive interview with US SAILING president, Gary Jobson, himself a widely respected sailing journalist and former America's Cup winner, and look for Part Two in Friday's edition (N.B., both Part One and Part Two of this interview took place prior to Monday's bombshell press-conference announcements in Valencia) and the notification of US SAILING's role in the 34th America's Cup Multihull Rule.
Fair winds and following seas,
David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor
America's Cup: Russell Coutts talks with the International Media - 1 Richard Gladwell, After the announcement of the Year, Boat and Protocol for the 2013 America's Cup, in Valencia, BMW Oracle Racing's CEO answered questions from an international media panel via a teleconference. Following is the first of a three part, slightly edited transcript of the teleconference moderated by BMW Oracle Racing's Tim Jeffery:... [more] Share this story
Gladwell's Line: Hit in the face with a wet fish or a hot cat? Richard Gladwell, After the shock of last night's announcement on the three elements of the 34th America's Cup, we spent an hour at the Emirate's Team NZ base this morning talking mainly with skipper Dean Barker, as to the team's initial take on the changes. First reaction from several, is that the claims of cost reduction don't stand up. See video of the AC45 under construction and Grant Dalton's interview.... [more] Share this story
US Sailing President Gary Jobson talks - where to from here? Part 1 David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor, Gary Jobson interview part one - But all is far from doom and gloom: day-glow green shoots abound with the Cup, US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics has been on a roll recently, and while we're still looking at an alphabet soup of rating rules, US Sailing, the national governing body of sailing in the States, is looking strong.... [more] Share this story
34th America's Cup - US Sailing to draft multihull rule Jake Fish, 34th America's Cup - Competition details were announced during Monday's press conference in Valencia, Spain. The extremely fast AC72 wingsail America's Cup catamaran has been tagged as the chosen boat for the 2013 race. US Sailing, in partnership with Morrelli & Melvin Design & Engineering, is the neutral party responsible for managing the development of the multihull rule.... [more] Share this story
ISAF Women's Match Racing World Championship 2010 - Event Preview Michael Levitt, ISAF Women's Match Racing World Championship 2010 - In one week, the world's most talented women match racers will descend upon Newport, Rhode Island and the New York Yacht Club's Harbour Court Clubhouse for their world championship. And though the discipline of match racing is relatively new in women's sailing, this group is already bringing action-packed, top level racing to each event.... [more] Share this story
U.S. Match Racing Championship starts this week in Grosse Pointe Jake Fish, U.S. Match Racing Championship - Detroit's Bayview Yacht Club is the host for this week's US Sailing Adult National Championship. The U.S. Match Racing Championship is an International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Grade 3 event. The highest placing eligible skipper in this event will qualify to represent the U.S. in the 2011 ISAF Nations Cup.... [more] Share this story
Extreme Sailing Series 2011 confirmed - bigger, better and now global! Extreme Sailing Series, Extreme Sailing Series is set to expand as OC Events, creator of the award-winning circuit now in its fourth season, confirm a worldwide 2011 series. The expansion is part of a new five-year vision for the professional sailing circuit that has changed the way sailing is seen, becoming one of the hottest properties in the sport.... [more] Share this story
Etchells World Championships - It's not the boat - it's the plan John Curnow, Etchells World Championships update: Jake Gunther, the Melbourne Fleet Captain, usually sails his Etchells called, The Boat. I got a chance to speak with Jake recently and listen to how the Etchells World Championships in Ireland and a very tidy fifth place came about for him.... [more] Share this story
America's Cup: Russell Coutts talks with the International Media - 3 Richard Gladwell, After the announcement of the Year, Boat and Protocol for the 2013 America's Cup, in Valencia, BMW Oracle Racing's CEO answered questions from an international media panel via a teleconference. Following is the third of a three part, slightly edited transcript of the teleconference moderated by BMW Oracle Racing's Tim Jeffery:... [more] Share this story
Melges 24 North American Championship - Impressive talent Fiona Brown, The cream of the North American Melges 24 Fleet will gather at the Rochester Yacht Club on Lake Ontario to vie for the title of 2010 Melges 24 North American Champion. As always at International Melges 24 Championships the depth of talent will be impressive... [more] Share this story
Sail Melbourne set to grow again in 2010 Sail Melbourne, The first leg of the 2011 ISAF Sailing World Cup will once again set sail in Melbourne, Australia. With the promise of world-class sailing out on the water, the international sporting event promises an increased array of engaging lifestyle events and attractions on-shore, offering an exciting and diverse range of entertainment.... [more] Share this story
America's Cup: Russell Coutts talks with the International Media - 2 Richard Gladwell, After the announcement of the Year, Boat and Protocol for the 2013 America's Cup, in Valencia, BMW Oracle Racing's CEO answered questions from an international media panel via a teleconference. Following is the second of a three part, slightly edited transcript of the teleconference moderated by BMW Oracle Racing's Tim Jeffery:... [more] Share this story
Etchells World Championships - The mystery of the Malahide Jake Gunther, Etchells World Championships update: 'Tis just a short story about a place that is full of folk law and local knowledge mysteries. We were told that there would be things going on out there on the racetrack. Things that only bearded wizards from the dark ages could possibly understand and that basically, unless you had years of local sailing experience, you were in big trouble.... [more] Share this story
Etchells World Champions: Taking on the world – with intent! Andrew Palfrey, The planning behind John, Tom and myself winning the 2010 Etchells Worlds in Howth, Ireland had its beginnings during the campaign for the previous year's Worlds in Melbourne. Ben Ainslie joined John and me for that campaign. Ben's sailing pedigree is unmatched worldwide and to sail next to him in the Etchells and hang out with him ashore was a very positive and memorable experience.... [more] Share this story
2010 Argo Group Gold Cup preview Talbot Wilson, With the European phase of the ISAF World Match Racing World Championship now complete, all eyes are now on Bermuda's Argo Group Gold Cup where twenty-four teams representing fourteen countries are set to match up in this classic battle.... [more] Share this story
PWA World Cup KIA Cold Hawaii - Seadi capitalises in Denmark PWA, KIA Cold Hawaii PWA World Cup - With strong south-westerly winds forecast for the entire day, many of the competitors were at the beach at dawn getting dialled into the conditions. However, the minute the competition was supposed to begin the wind began to backed off forcing head judge, Duncan Coombs to put the contest on hold.... [more] Share this story
Sail-World Mailbag: The Week that Was - America's Cup Decisions Sail-World Readers, Sail-World readers comment on the America's Cup situation... [more] Share this story
The America's Cup 12 Metre Reunion - Legends are in town for the event Jan Harley, The America's Cup 12 metre reunion - Legends are in town for the event - From September 16-19, Harbour Court, the New York Yacht Club's (NYYC) on-the-water clubhouse in Newport, Rhode Island, will welcome several hundred of sailing's 12 Metre fraternity, including 29 members of the 1977 Swedish syndicate Sverige, as they walk down memory lane.... [more] Share this story
America's Cup: Cool response from New Zealand Media to the Hot Cat Various Media, The New Zealand media were fairly guarded in their comments on the America's Cup announcement in Valencia, on Monday night (NZT), taking their lead from a very cool response from Emirates Team NZ CEO Grant Dalton The item was not the lead on the TV sports news on either channel, with both featuring interviews with Emirates Team New Zealand CEO Grant Dalton. TVNZ also interviewed ETNZ skipper De... [more] Share this story
Farr 40 Class Association - Class rule interpretation 148 Tink Chambers, Farr 40 Class Association - Class rule interpretation 148 - The headboard or headboard stiffener may be constructed from, Carbon Reinforced Plastic, Kevlar Reinforced Plastic, Glass Reinforced Plastic, Aluminum, or Steel. The entire headboard shall fit within the dimensions defined in the following diagram 31.... [more] Share this story
Laser Masters World Championships day 2 - An enforced early day off Laser Worlds, Laser Masters World Championships - Gusty winds which built as forecasted to over 30 knots during this afternoon meant that there was no racing today for the 350 sailors from 30 different countries who were due to race the second day off Hayling Island Sailing Club.... [more] Share this story
Audi MedCup Circuit - Overall victories are still open in both Series Audi MedCup Circuit, Audi Medcup Circuit update: It may seem like Emirates Team New Zealand head to Sardinia with a simple matter of counting down the races and points to victory, while the smaller 42 footers have a real final battle brewing... [more] Share this story
Clipper Round the World Race - Search for ten exceptional skippers Zoe Williamson, Sailing legend Sir Robin Knox-Johnston has launched his latest search for ten exceptional skippers to lead the internationally sponsored teams in the next edition of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.... [more] Share this story
America's Cup Reaction: Peter Montgomery talks with Russell Coutts - 3 Peter Mongtomery, Top America's Cup broadcaster, Peter Montgomery who has covered live every race sailed in an America's Cup and Louis Vuitton Cup since 1986/87 in Fremantle was unexpectedly in Valencia for the America's Cup announcement last night (NZT) and spoke with BMW Oracle Racing's Russell Coutts... [more] Share this story
America's Cup Reaction: Peter Montgomery talks with Russell Coutts - 2 Peter Mongtomery, Top America's Cup broadcaster, Peter Montgomery who has covered live every race sailed in an America's Cup and Louis Vuitton Cup since 1986/87 in Fremantle was unexpectedly in Valencia for the America's Cup announcement last night (NZT) and spoke with BMW Oracle Racing's Russell Coutts... [more] Share this story
Storck Family wins J/80 North Americans Stuart Johnstone, (Marion, MA)- Vene, vidi, vici. Five strong. The Jackson Five they're not, but they sure put on quite a show. The Storck family team again prevailed as J/80 NA Champions with a dramatic finish over a strong fleet of competitors from US/ Canada and far-away places like Denmark, Hong Kong and Japan! It was an extraordinary event hosted by Beverly Yacht Club and run by PRO Sam Vineyard.... [more] Share this story
America's Cup Reaction: Peter Montgomery talks with Murray Jones Peter Mongtomery, Top America's Cup broadcaster, Peter Montgomery who has covered live every race sailed in an America's Cup and Louis Vuitton Cup since 1986/87 in Fremantle was unexpectedly in Valencia for the America's Cup announcement last night (NZT) and spoke with BMW Oracle Racing's Murray Jones... [more] Share this story
America's Cup Reaction: Emirates Team NZ working towards a Challenge Warren Douglas, Emirates Team New Zealand says it is working towards mounting a credible challenge for the America's Cup in 2013. Details of the 34th America's Cup, including the type of yacht (a 72ft wing-mast catamaran) and a pre-regatta series in 2011 (to be raced in 45ft catamarans) were announced overnight in Valencia by the Cup defender BMWOracle Racing.... [more] Share this story
America's Cup Reaction: Peter Montgomery talks with Russell Coutts - 1 Peter Mongtomery, Top America's Cup broadcaster, Peter Montgomery who has covered live every race sailed in an America's Cup and Louis Vuitton Cup since 1986/87 in Fremantle was unexpectedly in Valencia for the America's Cup announcement last night (NZT) and spoke with BMW Oracle Racing's Russell Coutts... [more] Share this story
Newport Bucket Regatta images from Leighton O'Connor Leighton O'Connor images, Photographer Leighton O'Connor presents this gallery of images from the recent Newport Bucket Regatta.... [more] Share this story
Rolex Big Boat Series - Serious talent on San Francisco Bay Barby MacGowan, Rolex Big Boat Series, hosted by California's St. Francis Yacht Club, is setting up to showcase major sailing talent. The large turnout in Melges 32 class can be attributed in part to that class's World Championship, scheduled to follow immediately on the heels of the Rolex Big Boat Series and also to be hosted by St. Francis Yacht Club.... [more] Share this story
Laser Masters World Championships - Day 1 Paul Wyeth, Laser Standards World Championships - After delivering a week of unbroken sunshine and pleasant light to moderate sea-breezes which finished eight days ago on the same waters with an impressive overall victory for Australia's Tom Slingsby, today Hayling Bay presented version 2.0 of English summer when more than 350 sailors from 30 different countries contested the first pair of races.... [more] Share this story
KIA Cold Hawaii PWA World Cup, Denmark - Day One PWA/Paul Griffiths, KIA Cold Hawaii PWA World Cup, Denmark – Forty-Eight of the world's most radical wave riders registered their intent to battle it out at the brutal North Sea break of Klitmoller today, whilst a whole host of media gurus opened up the event via a plethora of online communication channels for the world to see.... [more] Share this story
America's Cup: Russell Coutts interviewed by the international media Richard Gladwell, Following the announcement in Valencia on the plans for the 34th America's Cup and the future of the event, BMW Oracle CEO, Russell Coutts talked over the changes and the thinking behind them with several members of the international media.... [more] Share this story
World Match Racing Tour welcomes 34th America's Cup Announcement WMRT Media, The ISAF World Match Racing Tour today welcomed the decision to run the 34th America's Cup in catamarans, as this confirms the WMRT as the world's pre-eminent monohull match racing series and creates a tremendous opportunity and responsibility for the Tour to continue to develop match racing worldwide.... [more] Share this story
Muted response from TeamOrigin to America's Cup announcement TEAMORIGIN Media, The British AC Team, TeamOrigin have issued the following statement following the publication of the 34th America's Cup Protocol and the information presented at the America's Cup Press Conference in Valencia. We now need to study the new Protocol document and determine whether it matches these promises. TeamOrigin will only challenge if the 34th America's Cup is fair and neutrally managed. '... [more] Share this story
BMW Oracle Racing Blog: The future is multihulls BMW Oracle Racing Blog, Russell Coutts, CEO of BMW ORACLE Racing, unveiled a new vision for the future of the America's Cup today at a press conference at the team's base in Valencia. Coutts was joined by Vincenzo Onorato, President of the Challenger of Record syndicate Mascalzone Latino, in announcing that the next craft for the 34th America's Cup will be a high-performance, wingsail catamaran known as the AC72.... [more] Share this story
Fisher's View: It's catamarans in 2013 Bob Fisher, There was very little beating about the bush at the BMW Oracle Racing headquarters when the announcement concerning the 34th America's Cup was made. Russell Coutts was positive and clear – the next America's Cup would see sweeping changes. The first of these was that it would be held in 72-foot catamarans with wing rigs.... [more] Share this story
Ladies, Let's Go Fishing! seminar to lure ladies to the sport BoatUS, The finest of fishing will be shared with women at the award-winning 'Ladies, Let's Go Fishing!' Florida Keys weekend seminar November 12-14 at Holiday Isle Resort & Marina in Islamorada - 'the sport fishing capital of the world.'... [more] Share this story
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