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America's Cup Rialto - July 24: American Magic rigs up..ETNZ on water..Youth boat foils

by Richard Gladwell/ 23 Jul 2020 19:22 PDT 24 July 2020
American Magic - Wynyard Point bases - Auckland - July 24, 2020 © Richard Gladwell /

America's Cup Rialto is a new series for the 36th America's Cup, and will publish each day an Americas's Cup boat sails - with images of the day. Usually there will be a morning report (NZT) based on when the boats have passed North Head - when there is usually the best photo opportunity, but worst light angle.

The Rialto report will be an update late in the day, when the boats come back - this is much harder to predict - but gives the best shots. In between we watch the training session, and practice long range photography, from wherever is closest to that area.

The New York Yacht Club's challenging team for the 36th America's Cup American Magic, splashed their boat ahead of what is expected to be her first sail tomorrow, Saturday.

The AC75 Defiant emerged from their boatshed at around 8.00 am on Friday, and with the yacht being launched about an hour later.

However, they were not the first America's Cup team into action on what was expected to be a marginal sailing day.

Emirates Team New Zealand rigged and launched in the pre-dawn dark before heading out for a three hour on the water session on their test boat Te Kahu, which was also in action earlier in the week.

Also out test sailing was the Youth America's Cup boat, which sailed a series of runs down the Waitemata Harbour, with substantial breaks in between indicating that there is plenty of demon-tweaking to be undertaken.

The forecasts proved to be correct - with SW winds (offshore) of 17-25kts being recorded at Northern Leading Beacon - the closest real-time observation station to America's Cup wind measurement requirements, and which is inside Course C the main stadium course for the 36th America's Cup.

Training sessions. Due to more pressing matters, we missed the Emirates Team NZ session. But they docked out at 8.30am and returned three and a half hours later, at noon - ahead of the freshening breeze which averaged 25kts gusting 30kts an hour later. The Defender's forecasting has always been very canny since they started sailing the AC75, and today was another example of that.

We did catch some of the America's Cup Youth boat (ACF9) out sailing - the second time we have seen it trialing. The first day was in a top end of the range NE breeze, and today was in a freshening SW breeze.

Both sessions were punctuated with long timeouts - which in the AC75 and the test boat indicates that there is a lot of systems sorting being done on the water.

The ACF9 appeared to be sailing with a youth crew - with two sailing from the trapeze.

A long reach down the harbour towards the end of the session went without incident.

Overall the AC9F would not appear to be as extreme as the AC75, or the ETNZ 12 metre test boat, which will be heartening for the international Youth crews. from what we saw today the AC9F would be halfway between a foiler and the match racing sports boats that are generally used for Youth match racing events.

It would be interesting to see the ACF9 sailed on several sessions with a AC or SailGP crew to show its performance potential.

High Court on hold

The High Court decision on the interim Injunction on the further publication by NZME and other media of details from a leaked documents and recording, has not been officially announced. Until a formal Decision is delivered by Justice Simon Moore, the interim injunction - given over the telephone on Friday, July 3 - remains in force.

New York YC to wait until Monday?

American Magic Executive Director Terry Hutchinson told 3News tonight, that due to the heavy workload by team members in Auckland over the past month, it had been decided to give the team the weekend off, saying there was a good forecast for the next week.

To some thinking it was a surprising comment for a team that hadn't sailed together for five months. But then what's a couple of days between friends

The summary forecast from shows light conditions on Saturday to Monday inclusive, with the wind freshening on Tuesday gusting to 17kts, and then exceeding the America's Cup wind limit on Wednesday and Thursday, with NE (onshore) winds gusting to 25kts for Wednesday and Thursday. It will be interesting to see whether Emirate Team New Zealand follow their practice of using every usable sailing day, and taking time out when the winter winds are beyond America's Cup Match limits.

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