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Darren Bundock - Red Bull Youth America's Cup training

The Publisher

Nov 28, 2012, 2:25 PM

Views: 7558
Darren Bundock - Red Bull Youth America's Cup training

Double Olympic medalist Darren Bundock (AUS) was recently charged with the training of six American teams that hope to be selected to compete in Red Bull Youth America's Cup (Sept. 1-4, 2013). Each of the teams, comprised of six sailors aged 19-24, had a two day camp where they were drilled on the AC45 on San Francisco Bay. "Bundy", who is among the coaching staff with Oracle Team USA, shares his observations:
* Among the training you provided, what did you find to be the most crucial for their success at AC45 sailing?

BUNDY: The biggest challenge all of these teams had was that they had never sailed the AC45 or used a wing before. Some teams came prepared and had done their home work, watching video to give it their best guess at playbooks and what role each member would do. We were looking for the teams with the best potential to improve and be the best team come September 2013 for the Red Bull Youth America's Cup. We assessed each team on team work, communication, professionalism, attitude, fitness and willingness to maintain their equipment.

* How many coaches were onboard with the teams, and how were they positioned to correct small mistakes before they became huge mistakes?

BUNDY: We always had two coaches onboard at all times for safety but mainly for instant feedback and instruction for the youth sailors. I was onboard and would dock out and dock in the AC45. My primary focus for feedback was on steering, wing trim, boat speed and boat balance. We also had Kyle Langford, Sam Newton and Rome Kirby rotating through, sharing their knowledge and tips and prominently focusing on the front of the boat and crew roles and efficiency. I feel this was the ideal way of doing it and fast tracked the youth's learning curve. We would primarily let the youths take accountability of the boat and their time on the water but with a lot of guidance from us.

* What aspects of the boat did the teams adapt to the quickest?

BUNDY: The most bewildering aspect of the boat was the wing as this was due to lack of experience with wings. However, they were pleasantly surprised how simple the wing was to control and setup, keeping in mind that the wing is also the most fragile part of the AC45 and needs the greatest care.

* What aspects of the boat did they have the most trouble?

BUNDY: I believe all teams went away from their two days of AC45 sailing with the focus on improving their strength and fitness. I think everyone underestimates the loads and the fitness required to sail the AC45. The most common comment was "it looks much easier on the TV."

* What was the worst thing that happened?

BUNDY: Unfortunately we destroyed one of the youth sailors in the fitness test. Our in-house doctor was on hand but the sailor was not given the okay to sail that day. At least we know he gave it everything he had. It was good to note that over the six days no damage was done to the boats so full credits to the youth sailors.
Here are details on the six teams:

The Publisher

Nov 28, 2012, 2:39 PM

Views: 7552
Re: [The Publisher] Darren Bundock - Red Bull Youth America's Cup training

Of the six teams, Team America Racing and American Youth Sailing Force were selected to represent the U.S. and San Francisco, respectively. The selected crews will be provided with coaching and instruction by Oracle Team USA through to the finals in September 2013.