Sep 23, 2010, 8:44 PM
Post #9 of 50
I'm sorry but I simply can't believe the sour grapes being expressed over the plans for America's Cup 34. The boats will be cheaper, faster, more difficult to sail and have the potential of being quite exciting even to the uninformed observer. The Deed of Gift is being followed to the letter. Anyone complaining of the fracas of 33 or comparing this to that absolutely needs to read the Deed and as much of the court proceedings that they can stomach. It all speaks for itself as to what happened. The Deed specifies an agreement between Challenger and Defender (two separate entities Mr B). If universal consensus were required; there would never be an AC 34. Reaching an agreement is not surrender, conspiracy or collusion.
Re: [The Publisher] New era for 34th America's Cup
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The Cup has always been a mix of technology and sailing prowess; not one design. The IACC is a wonderful boat but compared with either boat planned for AC 34 and its lead up; it is downright archaic. Multihulls are sailboats; they sail like any other sailboat; they just perform to a much higher level. They tack, jibe, have a wind shadow etc just like a mono hull. The smaller boat series will likely work out the kinks in what this level of a multihull match race should be.
Those thinking the boats are freaks really need to try one. Again, they are sailboats. Beach cats are cheap and it's easy to get a ride. I wonder how many of the purveyors of sour grapes have actually sailed a high performance cat; raced one? Folks talk of straight line speed but no tacking duels, no close racing, none of the excitement of monos. They are right about the speed. I suspect it will be every bit as close as the monos, maybe not in distance but, with the added speed, in time. Maneuvering can easily be forced if needed with a narrowed course, it may happen anyway. Let's not judge until we see.
Folks who think the defender is stacking the deck need only look to the Extreme 40 and the C class races that BOR has participated in to see they are far from the multihull experts. They sailed very little and not so successfully. They did no design work, no building, almost no match racing. There are a bunch of teams, or parts there of, that are way ahead in multihull experience. AC 33 was such an aberration, included so little actual two boat sailing (2 races, period) and has been so overtaken in technology, even by the C class wing; that I suspect the experience is near worthless. Even so, the defender always has an advantage in that he at least figured out how to win once.
Having said all that; I understand. Change is difficult. The unknown is mistrusted. Pilots complained when they removed the top wing, the propellers, added hydraulic controls, fly by wire and so on. Some embrace change and excel. Some question the need but investigate and participate when it is inevitable. Both take some modicum of courage. Unfortunately some just yell sour grapes and, with no real reason given nor understood; tuck their tails between their legs and skulk away. There, in my opinion, is the only real mistake.
I would urge those with doubts to study the history of the Cup. It is rich, interesting, and controversial. It's not just the 12's and the IACC boats; it's much more. Boat designs come and go but the Cup lives on. Read the Deed of Gift. As old and seemingly out of date as it is, it has kept the cup alive and some would say well since 1851 (no quibbling about it being written later). Its legal status is unique and nearly bullet proof. Read the court documents from Fey's "Big Boat Challenge" of 1988 and from AC 33. With a knowledge of Cup history and the Deed you'll see the Cup leap forward in 1988 and can easily envision the same happening as a result of AC 33 in much the same way and for much the same reason. The general framework is in place; the nuts and bolts are not. Give it a chance to develop before condemning it. Sail a cat; preferably a high performance one with boards. "A" cat, F-16, F-18, Inter 20, etc but even a Hobie 18 will do. A Hobie 16 or a Prindle 16 or 18 or several others without boards tack like sand barges so ignore that particular characteristic. Any of these, however, can show you the vision of a 70 foot version with wing sails and a crew of 11 at least as well as a go cart track can give you the vision of formula 1 or a local 18 holes the Ryder Cup. 15 knots is not 30 but it's not 8 either if you get my drift. If there was ever any interest in the 12's or IACC boats and the big cat will be 3X as fast think NASCAR at 600 not 35.
I apologize if I come across too strongly but finally and perhaps most importantly, if you take some of this to heart and are a sailor of any sort, you will enjoy it. The die is cast, embrace it, revel in it, participate in it. Be assured, no matter if the thing rolls up in a ball of flame, and admittedly it could, you will enjoy it more for as long as it lasts and, who knows? Russel, Vincenzo, et al may just be on to something.
Check Six .......Mal