Please select your home edition
Edition
upffront 2018 Generic 728x90

America's Cup- What does a Performance Coach do? Oracle's tells

by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com NZL on 27 Feb 2015
Performance Coach Philippe Presti makes a point to Oracle Team USA’s Tom Slingsby soon after they had lost another race to Emirates Team NZ Richard Gladwell www.photosport.co.nz
This week, Kiwis have been hearing a lot about the role of a Performance Analyst and Coach, with Emirates Team NZ claiming that the function will be vital to their success in the 2017 America's Cup.

Philippe Presti, a top Match Racer, Olympian and Finn Gold Cup winner was in that role for Oracle Team USA in the last America's Cup, and those on the water would always notice that the Performance Coach's boat was always the first alongside at the end of each race, with Presti and others being the first aboard USA-17 to make a point to the individual crew.

In this story published last September, in Sailing World magazine, Presti describes what a Performance Coach does and how they were able to effect the catch-up on Emirates Team New Zealand during the final half of the 34th America's Cup Match.


What is the most important skill set that you bring to a campaign?
[Laughing] You need to ask Jimmy [Spithill, OTUSA skipper]. I am a sailor, but I am not on the boat. I can offer an objective perspective and give the team more information that they otherwise would not have. I bring something extra from the outside. It is important that I am a sailor and have experience driving America’s Cup boats. I know the pitch and the feeling and what they are going through. I also didn’t need to keep Jimmy focused. In fact, you have to even distract him from the target sometimes [laughing]. There was never a single moment when I thought that he wasn’t focused.

How would you describe your coaching style?
A lot of my coaching is based on a playbook, which we developed for the smaller AC45 as well as the AC72 boats. What I like to do is to study a video of different scenarios, whether when training or during a race. From there, I draw a sketch with a software program I use and add it the playbook. It is sort of like a tree: There is a problem, and for each scenario, there are different options to solve the problem. It is a very collaborative effort. The team analyzes the situation and decides what the best options are. It is a brainstorming process. The most important people in the process are the sailors who ultimately make the choices.


We have four large screens connected to a PC that stores our database. Sometimes we have five cameras on the water, which are synchronized with the data, totaling 200 gigabytes per hour of sailing. There are 300 sensors on the boat that generate 30,000 data points per second. The heard rate of grinders, the turn rate of the winch, and the ratio of the bow to the stern are just a few of the data points collected. As a coach, I have to connect all of the pieces of information together and extract the most important things from the huge database. I look at the pitch of the board at a certain moment. If the pitch is wrong, I look at a graph of the pressure to analyze, for example, what valve was open and when it should have been closed. My goal is to analyze all of this information and make it useful for the next morning.

For the rest of this story click here





Marine Resources BOTTOMGul 2018 October - Code Zero FOOTERRS Sailing BOTTOM

Related Articles

95 clubs fight for qualification
For the SAILING Champions League Final in St. Moritz For the first time ever, five clubs from the National Sailing Leagues participate in the SAILING Champions League qualification. The reason: this year, the clubs for the final in St. Moritz, in August are determined in three qualifiers, not two.
Posted on 16 Jan
Setting a new sustainability standard
The Hempel Sailing World Championships delivered on many counts The Hempel Sailing World Championships Aarhus 2018 in Denmark delivered a significant direct economic and global media impact according to the Sportcal Global Sports Impact (GSI) Event Study published today.
Posted on 16 Jan
An eighth new IMOCA being built
All these new generation boats will line up for the 2020 Vendée Globe Twice winner of the Solitaire du Figaro and the Transat AG2R sailing double-handed with Armel Le Cléac'h, the skipper from Morlaix is turning a dream he has had for a long time into reality by joining the IMOCA circuit
Posted on 16 Jan
EFPT Event Calendar 2019
Release of the official tour-calendar for the upcoming season We are excited to release the tour-calendar for 2019. After an extremely successful 2018 with eight events and € 88.000, - prize-money in total, we are happy to announce that we will step it up again in 2019.
Posted on 16 Jan
Boiling down the miles in the GGR 2018
Blistering uphill speeds of 4.9 knots The GGR 2018 has seen dramatic instances of human drama, of sailors stepping up way beyond their comfort zones, of personal tribulation, and of bloody good seamanship, but most importantly, it has also proven itself to be a highly competitive race.
Posted on 15 Jan
Round Martinique Regatta: Female 'Surprise' crew
This course is far from trivial In about twenty days, the 23 registered crews will embark on three days of racing around Martinique. All teams are now beginning their preparations while they eagerly await the start of this event.
Posted on 15 Jan
US Sailing Team training camp kicks-off
Sustainability initiatives to mark the new year To mark the beginning of a new year, the US Sailing Team (USST) athletes are attending a five-day training camp at the US Sailing Center in Miami, Fla. The team will participate in classroom and on-the-water training sessions.
Posted on 15 Jan
Three generations of women at BOISW
next week, three generations of Ferris women will race together for the very first time As the starters' gun fires in the country's largest keelboat regatta next week, three generations of Ferris women will race together for the very first time.
Posted on 15 Jan
Coastguard to benefit from America's Cup
Coastguard is set to benefit from the Lottery Fund for Community Benefit related to the 2021 Am Cup The RNZ Coastguard is set to benefit from the Lottery Fund for Community Benefit related to the 2021 America's Cup to the tune of $9.8 million.
Posted on 15 Jan
Spindrift 2 set for new Jules Verne Trophy attempt
40 days 23 hours 30 minutes is the current record set by Francis Joyon After two and a half months of stand-by, Spindrift 2 is preparing to leave for a new attempt on the Jules Verne Trophy. The crewed round the world sailing record has been held since 2017 by Francis Joyon, who completed the non-stop course in 40d 23h 30m.
Posted on 15 Jan