Please select your home edition
Edition
Clipper Ventures

America's Cup: Emirates Team New Zealand flies Code Zero

by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World NZ 7 Oct 20:15 PDT 8 October 2019
Emirates Team New Zealand sailing with a Code Zero in light airs on the Hauraki Gulf, October 8, 2019 © Richard Gladwell

Emirates Team Team New Zealand had a foreshortened training session on the Hauraki Gulf this morning after their Code Zero let go.

Light winds average less than five knots and gusting a little higher prevailed for today's training session which saw the Code Zero set from the bowsprit for the first time on the AC75.

Soon after breaking away from one of the chase boats, shore-side observers reported that the AC75 was initially sailing fast but not foiling, before helmsman Peter Burling pulled away to sail a deeper wind angle.

Eyewitnesses reported that the AC75 then rolled slightly to windward as the lift from the leeward foil kicked in, and Te Aihe lifted up to be foil borne, and then returned to a higher sailing angle.

A few minutes into the sail, there was a breakage in the tack area of the Code Zero/bowsprit, and the sail streamed to leeward before being retrieved by her crew.

After continuing under mainsail for a while, the crew decided to give away the test session, before dropping the main to return to their base in the Viaduct Harbour just afternoon.

The America's Cup Defender has been putting in long hours in the days they have been able to get on the water, as they shake down the AC75 and acquire valid test data to be used in the design of their second AC75. However, the spring weather in Auckland has been against them with only four sailing days in the last ten.

The sailing to date has been mostly in fresh winds of 15-22kts, according to automated wind recording stations around the America's Cup course area.

While today was not the first light weather sailing for the Kiwis, the first few sails was marred a little by a mainsail hoisting issue. However, those now appear to be resolved.

Head designer Dan Bernasconi told Sail-World at the launch of Te Aihe a month ago that it was "difficult to know at this time (pre-launch) as to how much time the boat will be in the water and how much time flying. It may be in really light conditions we may be touching down very frequently.

"It is definitely something which we have in the simulator, but which we'll learn on the water and be able to validate that simulation and get a better idea of what those weights should be.

"We don't have long to do that because we have got to get into our second boat really soon."

Bernasconi went on to say that the use of the Code Zero and understanding how could be deployed was "probably hardest learning from the simulator".

"It is a good question about the Code Zero because when you are not foiling you'd love to have a Code Zero to help you accelerate in non-foiling conditions.

"But having a big sail like that when you are up and foiling you can quickly get to an apparent windspeed are carrying a lot of sail area when you don't want to. That is definitely one of the main things we want to find out about in this boat."

Although the team would not comment on the breakage, it is understood that it was a minor part that was difficult to fix on the water.

If the issue happened when the boat was put back to a higher sailing angle (which will also cause the apparent wind strength to increase substantially), it underlines the extent to which the sails, even light weather sails need to be versatile and able to be sailed in wide wind range than would be the case with "normal" race boats.

The Code Zero was last used in 2013 in the AC72 wingsailed foiling catamarans, the AC72 Code Zero was a bigger sail than that carried on the AC75, with a bigger overlap over the wingsail.

On the AC72 the cross-over to the jib only was around 10kts - considerably higher than today's windstrength. Conditions in the Gulf were marked with significant glassy patches - indicating no or little wind (and visible in the sailing images). Te Aihe was sailing in the breeze, but not far from a "flat spot".

The fact that she was able to get foiling in such conditions is significant.

The breakage (assuming it was not a manufacturing/build fault) is indicative of the high loads that the AC75 is generating, even in light weather.

The team is expected to be able to sail for the rest of this week, except maybe for Thursday when fresh seabreezes are predicted, gusting to 30kts, easing on Friday.

Related Articles

America's Cup: Plenty of Sheep in The Paddock
Unanswered questions on an upper end wind limit for the 36th America's Cup got a partial response The unanswered questions on an upper end wind limit for the 36th America's Cup got a partial response from the Defender, Emirates Team New Zealand in a training session east of Browns Island, today. Posted today at 10:32 am
America's Cup: Te Aihe heads out to The Paddock
Emirates Team NZ's AC75, Te Aihe was back on the Waitemata Harbour for the second day in a row Emirates Team NZ's AC75, Te Aihe was back on the Waitemata Harbour for the second day in a row, after spending almost two weeks in the shed. Posted on 20 Nov
Te Aihe plays with the 49ers ahead of the Worlds
Light winds weren't that co-operative with Emirates Team New Zealand's Te Aihe on Tuesday Light winds weren't that co-operative with Emirates Team New Zealand's Te Aihe on Tuesday when she ventured out on the Waitemata for the first time in almost two weeks. Posted on 20 Nov
America's Cup: American Magic's foiling tack video
The New York Yacht Club's Challenger for the America's Cup has released a short video The New York Yacht Club's Challenger for the America's Cup has released a short video shot in Newport, showing that they too, can do a foiling tack without getting wet Posted on 19 Nov
America's Cup: Luna Rossa's AC75 foiling - Video
First video released by Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli of their AC75 foiling in Cagliari, Sardinia First video released by Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli of their AC75 foiling in Cagliari, Sardinia. Posted on 15 Nov
America's Cup: The Agony and Ecstacy
Like all professional sports, race results in the America's Cup mean more than just bragging rights “A little bit of boat speed makes you famous” once said an America's Cup skipper. The unsaid flip side is that a lack of it, will relegate you to obscurity. Posted on 15 Nov
Burling and Tuke announce new ocean ambition
Olympic champions Peter Burling and Blair Tuke have announced the establishment of Live Ocean Olympic champions Peter Burling and Blair Tuke have announced the establishment of Live Ocean, a registered New Zealand charity with a focus on ocean conservation. Burling and Tuke say they're excited about what may be their biggest challenge of all. Posted on 10 Nov
America's Cup: Two AC75s line up in NZ and UK
Two videos that show some of the similarities and differences between the Brits and Kiwi's AC75s America's Cup teams sailing against each other, other than at sanctioned events is illegal under the Protocol for the next America's Cup. Here is the next best thing - two videos that show the similarities and differences between the AC75 designs Posted on 8 Nov
America's Cup: Te Aihe nosedives at high speed
Spectacular high speed AC75 nosedive caught on camera Emirates Team New Zealand's AC75 had a high speed nosedive while sailing upwind in moderate to fresh winds on the Hauraki Gulf today. The sequence was caught on camera, at long distance, by Sail-World NZ. Posted on 7 Nov
America's Cup: A closer look at Te Aihe
America's Cup: A closer look at ETNZ's AC75 Te Aihe, as she waited for the wind earlier in the week Light winds earlier in the week in Auckland probably didn't do much for Emirates Team NZ's America's Cup workup, but it did allow a closer look at their AC75 Te Aihe, as she waited and waited for the breeze to arrive. Posted on 7 Nov
Melges 14 2019 FooterPandB 2019 Autumn Sale - FooterSOUTHERN-SPARS-MISSY-FURLING-BOOMS-728-X-90 Bottom