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America's Cup Race Highlights

By September 10, 2013

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I've written before how I agree with many traditional sailors that the America's Cup races have very little to do with what we non-billionaire sailors do on our own sailboats. And it may very well be that races between these mega-catamarans are even bad for the sport of sail racing, given how they're more like a cross between the Mars Landers and NASCAR than the kind of sailing or racing "the rest of us" do. Nonetheless, there is something fascinating about these behemoths flying over the surface of the water on their foils. While I'm not interested enough to set aside the time to watch the races live (potentially dull racing, after all), I do enjoy watching the highlights later on good YouTube videos. Here's the link for the highlights of races 1 and 2, both won by New Zealand. The first was better, involving some crossings and drama; the second was a less dramatic chase the whole way with not much happening competitively. And here's the link for the highlights of races 3 and 4, the second of which Oracle won in a dull chase - and neither of which had much competitive drama. Oh well. I'll probably keep watching for a while to see if anything interesting happens. Otherwise, the big talk about the sailing skills involved leaves me rather cold, about as closely related to my own sailing as a US supercomputer vs. a Russian supercomputer in a chess game. So, yeah, I'll miss the live races tomorrow - I'm going sailing instead!

Comments

September 17, 2013 at 12:40 am
(1) Peta says:

Hi Tom, I have to disagree – I am loving the AC72,s – want a tee-shirt with my Revo11 and stating “When I grow up I am going to be an AC72″

Have learned lots from the live graphics, the discussions about various aspects of sailing in general, and trying to imagine the speed over the water gives me goosebumps…lol

I may never go bigger than 11f 6 inches for a boat, but I can imagine.
Thinking of asking Hobie to make foils for the sailing yaks.

Go Team NZ from Australia.

Péta

September 17, 2013 at 12:59 pm
(2) Bill says:

I’m liking the AC racing around at 50 mph on foils, exciting stuff. Just wish there was more TV coverage. I also enjoy your column. Bill

September 17, 2013 at 6:13 pm
(3) klaussailing says:

Hola Tom,
I completely AGREE with your well chosen words and sharply analyzed situation:-)

I do like your comments and so very useful hints very very much, because they are orientated to true sailing, to seaman and to the ones who have respect to nature and do know that on a sailing yacht it does not matter what you are but how you are…
this A-cup is NOT sailing, it is only money focused and it is the fear of the sponsors to loose their money to a ‘event’ which soon will be distinct because it costs to much money to move two constructions some meter -if there is wind-and to find out that someone has ‘cheated’ and some layers now can earn again a lot of money by interpreting this stupid ‘regulations’ of what they think is sailing…
to real sailing this kind of artificisal ‘moving around” does not ad anything but just the usual emotion to the unskilled crowd of watchers who believe in ‘biger, faster, higher’…
I peronally believe that the only people who enjoy the ‘cup races’ is the same audience which like F1, wrestling shows and that they are waiting to see accidents, and that they do not have any idea of true sailing, with real boats, in real weather conditions in the real sea…
happy sailing

September 18, 2013 at 9:40 am
(4) Henry Irla says:

Very well expressed, Klaus! I share 100% your opinions about de AC.
Nice show, but nothing to do with Yachting.

September 20, 2013 at 12:40 am
(5) Capt Gary says:

AC Racing has always been about cutting edge technology and innovation. I do miss the 12 meters, but have been watching every race from the water so far and have to say it is pretty exciting. Tactics are still crucial and who is to say what part of this technology will make it into cruising boats in the future. Remember when the secret wing keel was revolutionary? I doubt we will ever see these boats race again after this cup, but wing technology, or at least the structural material may find its way onto ordinary boats before we know it.

September 20, 2013 at 2:50 am
(6) Will Stiger says:

These extreme boats add another dimension to Yachting and will have the same effect on advances in equipment as the space race had.
Its entertaining like the circus and doesn’t have to be a threat to our relaxed cruising lifestyle.

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