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Speed = Smile on the Dial - Australia Newsletter


Speed = Smile on the Dial

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Early rendering of the foiling mini-maxi, Flying Nikka - photo © Mills Design

Dear Recipient Name

So Flying Nikka, the MW40OF Offshore 40 footer, then I feel the need..., and David Henshall's The Greed for Speed are unequivocally all about this very subject. Of course, there are also two events in play at the present, the Vendée Globe and America's Cup, which continue to captivate us all, right around the globe.

Now apart from their incredibly high readership, all of these articles and events share another common element. Foiling. No longer a mere buzzword, it forms the central space inside nearly all of the karate sessions (the sweeping majority of which are virtual at present BTW) that are going on around the globe right now.

MW40OF - New Foiling Offshore Sailboat Concept - photo © Wilson / Marquinez Naval Architecture
MW40OF - New Foiling Offshore Sailboat Concept - photo © Wilson / Marquinez Naval Architecture

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On ya trike!

In this Brave New World, there is no complete rulebook for those out at the pioneer fronts, building ranches, and laying the tracks for the railways of the future. The acceleration into said future over the last 10 years has been as quick as it has been distinct. Design, sailing skills, engineering and construction, masts, sails and outcomes now are what hitherto may have landed you in heresy court. Gather your bags of stones, huh....

Indeed, one incredibly well recognised sailor, gifted designer, and sought after official said of the flurry of thoughts and analysis flying around of late, that one needed to realise that improvements were tied into the correct understanding of the compound curves around all of the elements above, and how they then vary up and down the speed range. Quite so. Quite so.

Early rendering of the foiling mini-maxi, Flying Nikka - photo © Mills Design
Early rendering of the foiling mini-maxi, Flying Nikka - photo © Mills Design

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Feedback from I feel the need..., was absolutely terrific, and we sincerely thank you for that. Often, when one is considering the overall word count, some things can get left behind. When I was writing the sentence about land yachts, I also wanted to add the incredible achievements of Paul Larsen and Sailrocket. I should have done it then, for now I am using a whole paragraph. Suffice to say that just like Mark Jardine and Andy Rice in Part II of 2020's Top 10, I cannot wait to see if Paul will be back, especially in light of the SP80 programme.

At any rate, it all serves to remind us all that this material is about course or passage work. To that end, this week's far ranging chat with the great Mark Mills was delightful, inspiring and insightful. If we look at speed as the blank sheet of paper, then Vlad Murnikov has certainly said it is not a flat sheet at all. More like a crystal ball, or a five-minute free for all in the Mensa shop.

Boeing 929 Jetfoil passenger ferry - photo © Photo supplied
Boeing 929 Jetfoil passenger ferry - photo © Photo supplied

So it was a comment from Mills that provided for the subheading above. "What if we treated it like a trike, and put the rudder and elevator up front? I haven't had too many takers as yet, but it makes sense to me, and I reckon it would go a long way to reducing the amount of 'wheelies' we see these boats do." Now Mills' trike may not be a fully rendered item just yet, but as he points out, "The Boeing 929 Jetfoils worked this way without issue!" Indeed they did, as too the Pegasus Class Fast Attack and Patrol Boats...

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And the door gets flung wide open.

If ever there was a Dorothy Dicks kind of moment, then that certainly was one of them. Self-deprecatingly, Mills says he's the baby on board the enviable team collected for Flying Nikka, and when you have members from three of the four AC teams, as well as the might of the North Sails juggernaut to provide the best 'engines', then he can kind of afford that stance, but still waters run deep.

Flying Nikka owner, Roberto Lacorte, with Mark Mills. - photo © Mills Design
Flying Nikka owner, Roberto Lacorte, with Mark Mills. - photo © Mills Design

"It is amazing how much this arena is captivating the sailors/readers, and it is also amazing just how much is being learned at the bleeding edge. We cannot go backwards now, so there's only forwards left", said Mills. One of the most obvious things about Flying Nikka is her long, non-canting fin and bulb to move the ballast from the foils to the keel. "The Rule book becomes crucial for a project like this, so as not to end up with just a show boat. ORC have said that they will find a way to rate her by the time she's ready."

"We came at this from the reciprocal of the AC teams if you like, whilst still using the base logic. To make it affordable and user friendly, we thought 'why not use the mule?' Obviously she has to achieve a certain righting moment, hence the keel, for it is all measured in her most compromising position, and weight aloft is a killer."

'The Mule' - Spring training in Pensacola, Florida - giving a better idea of the foiling physics of the AC75. - photo © Amory Ross
'The Mule' - Spring training in Pensacola, Florida - giving a better idea of the foiling physics of the AC75. - photo © Amory Ross

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Up. Up and away!

Naturally, to take advantage, Flying Nikka will have to fly early. Very early! Yet she will also have to deal with a huge range of conditions and sea state. The Channel hovercrafts were not able to run once the waves got too high, and the wave piercing cats that replaced them have to come off the gas significantly when the seas are over 3m.

"Flying Nikka has to work. Maximum wave height will be real. She may have to hove to, but the Ultims have already provided a lot of light into what is possible and when. Ride control is a very crucial element, and this falls fairly in the lap of Dimitri Nikolopoulos and his KND team in Spain."

Luna Rossa - Waitemata Harbour - January 6, 2020 - 36th America's Cup - photo © Richard Gladwell /
Luna Rossa - Waitemata Harbour - January 6, 2020 - 36th America's Cup - photo © Richard Gladwell /

Flagstaff 2020 - Excess 12 - MPU   Race Yachts 2021 600x500 v1

Thinking about things now with a project such as this is vital. What will happen at 1m wave height? 2m? Will it require a double luff system such as that created by Advanced Wing Systems, so that a trysail can go up a centre track? Do the foils actuate independently like ailerons, or even stabilisers on superyachts and liners to reduce incidence of roll, or is it purely on elevators?

Mills said, "Yes it is true. Ideally you would never want to be at more than 10 degrees of heel, given you have a light overall displacement to begin with. Yet all design threads go back in time, even to Herreshoff. It is important to tap into the development cycle. We are able to pick out the cool stuff from the AC75 that is both productive and creative."

Giancarlo Pedote, Prysmian Group - Vendée Globe - photo © Jean-Marie Liot
Giancarlo Pedote, Prysmian Group - Vendée Globe - photo © Jean-Marie Liot

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"In this space it is hard to say what is less idiosyncratic than something else. Appendage engineering is a crucial component and we have chosen the AC75 route over the IMOCA path for this reason. At any rate, not everyone will want to go this quickly. It is like the windsurfer was 40 years ago. One won't take over from the other. Etchells, 5.5m and so on will remain the purest form of the sport, and that's why you see so many of the greats sail them", said Mills in closing.

Does any of this mean we'll get our tricycle soon? Who knows... (but it sure would be cool!!!)

On ya trike, all right - now if we just put wing sails off the patrol boat's mast.... - photo © Photo supplied
On ya trike, all right - now if we just put wing sails off the patrol boat's mast.... - photo © Photo supplied

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Charge your glasses

So we would also really like to thank you very much, once again. On top of November to December being a record month, December 1 to January 1 showed another 9.5% increase. The good news continues, with January 7 also being our largest ever single day for Sail-World, with 39,383 unique visitors recorded for the 24-hour period. Cheers to you!

Mark Jardine, our Managing Editor, said about it all, "Your patronage is certainly very much appreciated. Our team works away on their specific interests to bring you the best, most accurate, and of course, incredibly timely information about our shared passion. In turn, you absorb the global and collaborative nature of our material with more and more vigour. This is not missed on us, and whilst incredibly humbling, it also serves as motivation to drive us on. Nice one - thank you."

Right oh - there is plenty of information on the group's sites for you to review when you can. Please avail yourself of it.

INEOS Team UK - Waitemata Harbour - January 8, 2021 - 36th America's Cup - photo © Richard Gladwell /
INEOS Team UK - Waitemata Harbour - January 8, 2021 - 36th America's Cup - photo © Richard Gladwell /

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Now if your class or association is generating material, we can help you spread your word just by. Got this newsletter from a friend? Would you like your own copy next week? Just follow the instructions on our newsletter page. Whilst there, you can also register for other editions, like Powerboat-World.

Finally, many thanks for making Sail-World your go-to choice. We're always here to keep pumping out the news. Stay safe, and have the happiest time possible depending on your level of restrictions.

John Curnow
Editor, Sail-World AUS

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Goolugatup Sailing Carnival at South of Perth Yacht Club, Western Australia
To celebrate the 75th year of the South of Perth Yacht Club, the inaugural Goolugatup Sailing Carnival was sailed in the first couple of weeks in January 2021.

18ft Skiff NSW Championship on Sydney Harbour - Race 5
Racing resumed today, after the annual break over the Christmas-New Year period, when the Australian 18 Footers League conducted race 5 of the 2020-2021 NSW 18ft Skiff Championship on Sydney Harbour.

Vendée Globe Day 64 morning update: 'It is good to finally express the potential of my boat'
In second place and having closed more miles on leader Yannick Bestaven, Charlie Dalin is pleased to have enjoyed 24 hours or more of good speeds.

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Maxi Edmond de Rothschild set off on their second Jules Verne Trophy record attempt
With clockwork precision, it was at 01 hours 33 minutes and 46 seconds UTC that the Maxi Edmond de Rothschild set sail this Sunday 10 January on a fresh attempt at the Jules Verne Trophy record.

Combined Hobart Clubs Summer Pennant Series - Race 6
Race Six of the Combined Clubs Summer Pennant Series, the third in the Long Race Trophy Series, was sailed in almost perfect conditions on the River Derwent on Saturday.

Additional keel ram damage for Isabelle Joschke (MACSF) who has abandoned her Vendée Globe
The Franco-German skipper Isabelle Joschke has been forced to abandon her Vendée Globe on the 62nd day of racing after a further failure of the keel canting system on board her IMOCA MACSF.

JS Yachting 2020 - 600x500   Pacific Sailing School 2020 - MPU
Six weeks until Heaven Can Wait Charity Sailing Regatta 2021
Yes, Only 6 weeks to go and yes, entries are now coming in so thank you to the early starters. 2020 was probably a year we all want to forget and what better way to start is by entering the 2021 Heaven Can Wait Charity Sailing Regatta

Vendée Globe Day 63: An unruly, unrelenting Pacific
The Pacific is proving particularly unrelenting for the Vendée Globe competitors still racing eastwards towards Cape Horn. There might be the odd pause for a few hours before the next low pressure system kicks them along the course towards deliverance.

Navigating the nerve centre of a Clipper 70
If you care to venture down below deck on a state-of-the-art Clipper 70 racing yacht, follow the narrow corridor aft to either port or starboard.

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Vendée Globe Day 63 morning update: Different lives, different oceans
Skippers of the 14 IMOCAs in the South Atlantic now reap the benefits of clearer, bluer skies, sun warming their skin in the sun and their bodies recover during short restoring naps.

Vendée Globe Day 62: Remarkable rudder replacement keeps Medallia rolling towards Cape Horn
British skipper Pip Hare kept her Vendée Globe on course when she replaced her damaged port rudder on Medallia yesterday evening, completing the difficult operation in the South Pacific Ocean some 1000 miles west of Cape Horn.

Rare ocean climate data transmitted live from Seaexplorer – YC de Monaco during Vendée Globe Race
German skipper, Boris Herrmann has been racing his yacht Seaexplorer - Yacht Club de Monaco solo for over 60 days around the world, through the remote Southern Ocean, in the Vendée Globe ocean race.

Navico 2020 fun MPU AUS   Pantaenius 2019 - AmRad - 300x250 - SW WEBSITE
America's Cup Rialto: January 8 - INEOS on the pace as three AC75's fleet race
By the time INEOS got going the wind was probably just above the 6.5kt minimum for starting a race in next weeks Prada Cup, but nevertheless the Brits got on their foils using a #1 jib, taking about 100-150 metres of runway to lift off.

Notice of Race released for 2021 International 5O5 Class World Championship in Bermuda
After the year most people would probably rather forget, the International 5O5 Class has announced that the Notice of Race for this year's World Championship has been released.

New J/45 offshore sailing yacht
Introducing an exciting, new 45' offshore sailing yacht that may change all of your sailing plans. Leading-edge hull design meets refined interior design to raise the bar on cruising comfort and performance like no J before it.

Vetus-Maxwell 2020   Ronstan 2020 - Sailmon MAX - MPU
Jack Knights - Sailor, Innovator, Journalist, and a Witty Wise Man
40 years ago in early January, the sport of sailing lost one of its keenest and most observant commentators, when the UK magazine 'Yachts & Yachting' columnist Jack Knights died suddenly at just 51 years of age.

Vendée Globe Day 61 morning update: Bestaven's biggest lead
For the moment, and it may still be temporary, Yannick Bestaven has accelerated north and left the battle for second in his far distant wake.

Wild finish to Bartercard Sail Paradise Regatta
The twelfth edition of the Bartercard Sail Paradise Regatta concluded today in a strong and gusty southerly, with the sporty conditions testing the sailors who did take to the water to race.

Sea Sure 2020 - MPU   Selden 2020 - SMF - MPU
America's Cup: Prada Cup pairings announced - first racing on March 15, 2021
After over three years of buildup, the wins, the losses and the points will really start to count when racing gets underway in the Prada Cup on March 15, 2021, in Auckland, New Zealand.

Bartercard Sail Paradise Regatta at Southport Yacht Club - Overall
The Gold Coast's premier offshore yachting event, Bartercard Sail Paradise came to an end yesterday with a bang.

J-Bird III Restoration Series: Part 7 - A new design for the deck
In parts 1 - 5 we have explored the purchase, haul out and delivery from Sydney to Brisbane of the World's First TP52. We then stripped the interior of everything and cut the deck off due to severe balsa core rot.

The Vendée Globe interview with Conrad Humphreys: Sir Robin Knox-Johnston
There is arguably no better person to talk about the Vendée Globe than legendary yachtsman, Sir Robin Knox Johnston.

Simon 'Fumesy' Russell passes away
One of sailing's great characters has been taken from us by Covid. Simon Russell, known by all as Fumesy, suddenly passed away on Tuesday.

An interview with JB Braun on North Sails' state-of-the-art sail making
I checked in with JB Braun, North Sails' project leader for 3Di, to learn more about North Sails' state-of-the-art sailmaking.

Upffront 2020 Foredeck Club SW MPU   Highfield Boats - Sailing - MPU
America's Cup Rialto: January 6 - Brits impressive in the breeze. Near-miss at 80kts
INEOS Team UK turned in an impressive performance in several line ups with US Challenger American Magic. An 80kt collision was narrowly averted when American Magic aborted a gybe as two AC75's headed for a mark.

MW40OF - New Foiling Offshore Sailboat Concept
From the designers of the Persico 69F, the MW40OF is an offshore racer with full foiling capabilities packed into a manageable size and capable of normal docking without issues from foils sticking out and with safety and simplicity as driving factors.

2020-21 Vendée Globe - A more intense race than ever before
The ninth edition of the Vendée Globe is far from over but, with the leaders now at Cape Horn, this is a good time to take stock.

Road to Gold - Burling & Tuke MPU   Doyle Sails 2020 - By Sailors For Sailors 300x250
America's Cup Rialto: January 5 - Defenders play the FR0 card
As predicted in our last Rialto, the biggest takeout from the America's Cup World Series and the Xmas Cup, was the huge benefits to be gained by efficient foiling in light breezes.

The Only Way Is Up!
After the year we've all been through we're all hoping this to be the case, and in the sailing world there are many current examples where the saying is both physically and metaphorically true.

WA Multihull community get together with the WAXIT National Championship for a bit of fun
Restrictions on travel around Australia meant that national championships scheduled for the festive season were all cancelled for 2020-21. There would be no catching up with interstate sailing friends for competition this year. 250 - 2014   Cyclops 2020 - Dec2020 - MPU
New Rooster Women's Sports Shorts & Sports Bra – For Women Who Do It All
Designed for and by active women who have the requirement for supportive, breathable underwear/base layers under our wetsuits as well as for running, SUPping, at the gym, or just about anywhere.

Rigs and Remedies - What can INEOS Team UK do to improve?
One of the answers may lie in the rig, the powerplant of an AC75. The double skinned 'soft' sails that are used on these boats may look like a compromise between traditional and solid wings, but they are proving to be far more potent.

Breakout Series Postponed
The Breakout Series, already postponed from August 2020, will not go ahead in January but will be rescheduled for August 2021.

Henri-Lloyd 2020 Nov MPU SW   Official-Collection-Red 300x250 NZ+AUS
The John Westell Centenary, Part 1: The early years
From the Bloody Mary, to the 50th Contender Worlds and now the Sydney-Hobart, the casualty list from Covid grows ever longer and for a while, it looked as if the next occasion to fall would be the centenary of the birth of John Westell.

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