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Cup Spy Nov 24: INEOS goes foil testing again

by Richard Gladwell Sail-World NZ 24 Nov 14:18 PST 25 November 2022
INEOS Britannia - Tow Test #2 - November 24, 2022 - Majorca © Ugo Fonolla / America's Cup

What happened in the Cup - November 24, 2022:

  • INEOS Britannia tow tested their LEQ12 off Majorca for the second time on Thursday
  • American Magic has the Thanksgiving period off, after an excellent sail in their AC75 Patriot on Tuesday (local time).
  • Emirates Team New Zealand did not sail - after suffering catastrophic damage to the bow of their LEQ12 in a nosedive at 40kts on Tuesday (local time).
  • Luna Rossa unexpectedly tow tested their LEQ12 on Monday, with sensors fitted to one foil. They expected to be sailing in a "week or 10 days" when their mast is repaired, after being dropped as a result of a "simple mistake" on November, in Cagliari
  • Alinghi Red Bull Racing's AC75 (ex ETNZ) is back in the shed until November 29 - with more upgrades expected.

INEOS Britannia - LEQ12 - Majorca - November 24, 2022

Six days after doing their first towing test in Mallorca, the British America's Cup Challenger, INEOS Britannia, did a second towing exercise - with the delay between runs put down to inclement weather.

The AC37 Joint Recon team were very aggressive, shooting a massive 1,512 images - a new record for any recon team, plus 94 videos.

The purpose of the towing appears to be two-fold, firstly the calibration of sensors, and secondly the establishment and confirmation of communications with the chase boat, and also the INEOS design team located in Mercedes-AMG F1 team headquarters in Brackley, UK.

INEOS Britannia CEO Ben Ainslie explained why the team were prepared to take longer than most over the two testing phase - which normally lasts a day - if that.

"We're going to focus quite hard on our tow-testing as we get T6 through its paces. Main reason for that is our tool validation. We want to try and eliminate some of the variances of the aerodynamic influences on tow testing. So we can do that by just having the platform by itself get that accurate data initially, which helps us with our design tool validation."

"And then we get the rig and sails into the boat. Then we take incremental steps forwards development of the boat, testing different components, which will be fed into our design and technology group who make some of these key decisions which go directly into the design of our eventual raceboat for the America's Cup."

The final stage of today's test involved a long tow back to the base with the port foil raised, and the crew stacked on the starboard side to offset the extra righting moment. It is not known if this was an equipment malfunction, a test. The official line was they "wanted to preserve the asset".

Session Statistics - Majorca - November 24, 2022 - INEOS Britannia - LEQ12

  • Wind Strength 5ktskts(AM) <5kts (PM)
  • Wind Direction: N(AM) N (PM)
  • Sea State: (AM) (PM)
  • Roll out: 0833hrs Dock Out: 1000hrs
  • Dock In: 1340hrs Crane out: 1410hrs
  • Total Tacks: 0 - Fully foiling: 0; Touch & Go: 0; Touch Down: 0
  • Total Gybes: 0 - Fully foiling: 0; Touch & Go: 0; Touch Down: 0

Crew: Gilles Scott (helm), Luke Parkinson (helm), Bleddyn Mon, Iain Jensen

Additional Images:

This commentary was written and compiled from video, still images and statistical content extracted from the AC37 Joint Recon program and other material available to Sail-World NZ including photo files, and other on the water coverage from the 2010, 2013, 2017 and 2021 America's Cups.

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