SF Bay scalps ACWS fleet—Sailing News from the U.S. and Beyond
As anticipation ratchets up for this week's premiere event of the 2012-2013 America's Cup World Series' (ACWS) calendar, which is being held on San Francisco Bay (August 21 to 26), several boats have already discovered the realities of 'vanishing stability' during their precursor practice days. Thus far, three teams (Team Korea, Luna Rossa Swordfish, Artemis Racing) all sustained full-value capsizes as the sailors dealt with the windiest conditions that they have wrestled with aboard the wingsail-powered AC45 catamarans in months.
Team Korea, skippered by 2012 Gold medalist Nathan Outteridge, was the first to flip. Fortunately, all crew was uninjured and the damage to the wingsail was minimal. Unfortunately for the Italian-flagged Luna Rossa Swordfish, however, their wingsail was seriously injured when they took their ride, which resulted in the wing spending more than a half-hour in the drink.
'We were in a pre-start practice and we bear off and that was it,' reported Luna Rossa Swordfish skipper Max Sirena. 'It was pretty windy, over 25 knots, and the wind was against the tide (causing waves). Sooner or later, where you push the limits, it is going to happen.'
As for the extent of the damage, Sirena was realistic. 'The wing is certainly not in good shape,' he said. 'So we will use a new wing and are hoping to sail again on Monday.' This week could well be a reality check for teams as far as the prerequisite 'wing inventories' required to race on the Bay (and you thought buying laminate headsails for your club racer was expensive!). The event begins this Tuesday, so stand by for plenty of racecourse coverage, as it develops, and be sure to check out the pre-event capsize drama that's been taking place in SF, inside this issue.
Also stateside and in match-racing news, the Chicago Match Racing Center (CMRC) held its August Grade 2 Invitational this weekend. Sailors enjoyed spectacular racing conditions, with 10-14 knot breezes and relatively flat waters. Don't miss the full media coverage, inside this issue, including video recaps of the spectator-friendly match-racing excitement.
The 2012 Zhik Italian Moth Championships served as a feeder regatta for the 2012 Moth Worlds, which are currently taking place on scenic Lake Garda Martina Orsini
Meanwhile, on Italy's Lake Garda, the Zhik Nautica Moth Worlds, which started today and run through August 26, is fielding a record-breaking 125 sailors from 20 different countries. A glance through the entry list indicates that this event will be hyper-competitive, with top talent coming from all corners of the globe to participate in what has rapidly become sailing's highest-foiling class of singlehanded rocketships. Given the talent-rife entry list, it's fair to say that the Top Ten list will likely go down to the wire, with serious competition for the coveted podium positions. Stay tuned for more, as it becomes known.
And finally, don't miss the Cowes Week wrap-up report; the post-regatta write-up from the US Youth Sailing Championships; the daily reports from the recently concluded Cal 20 Class Championships, and the previews of this year's San Francisco Big Boat series (September 6-9) and the J/24 Worlds (September 13-21). Enjoy!
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