Feb 26, 2010, 10:21 AM
Post #59 of 66
With some due respect to my fellow club member, Norman Davant (read post here), with whom I have never quite seen eye to eye, it doesn’t take an “expert” to tell the difference between a match race regatta, think Congressional Cup*, and a fleet race regatta, such as our annual Big Boat Series*. (* both first sailed in 1965, with yours truly as a crew member in each)
Re: [Norman Davant] 34th Cup in SF in Multihulls
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Fleet racing can take place practically anywhere and, by its nature, often includes elements of luck and local knowledge, in addition to sailing skill and boat preparation. Match racing, as we now see it around the world, attempts to minimize luck and, particularly, local knowledge, as factors in its outcome.
The “360 degree circle” in my diagram represents the possibility of sailing to either of the lay lines on a single tack, and provision for a spectator fleet* which will probably show up for the races we’re discussing. (* another area in which I have some “expertise”)
Be that as it may, the venue and conduct of the 34th Cup match is up to GGYC, with the advice and consent of CNR (Club Nautico di Roma), the new Challenger of Record. If my advice were to be sought, I would suggest they:
That’s probably enough for right now, but, while I’m at it, can I point out a few things about the history of the Cup? This topic has been thoroughly covered by yachting historians, including Lawson and, more recently, Bob Fisher, but some of the facts have been pretty well trampled lately.
- Keep the momentum by announcing, very quickly, a series of preliminary regattas (formerly known as “Acts”), and naming a starting date for the next match.
- Either propose, right away, a concept for the sort of boat intended for the next match, for example: single hull, medium displacement, no engine, no unobtanium, around 80’ LOA.
- Or, announce that the next match will be sailed in ACC Version 6.
- Appoint a committee of yacht designers to come up with a “box” rule for the new class, or ACC changes, by the end of October.
- Announce the new rule and the next venue at the same time, before Jan. 1.
- Sail the early prelims in Version 5 ACC boats. There are lots of them and they can be mobilized quickly.
- Schedule the first prelim on San Francisco Bay, this summer, but don’t let it conflict with the Stag Cruise.
- Design the SF prelim format as fleet racing, but include one or two days of match racing, to test the venue.
- Schedule the following prelim in Italy.
We use the term “America’s Cup” to refer to both the semi-ugly trophy, and the series of regattas for which America’s Cup has been the prize. Around the last event, we heard, over and over, that the “age” of the America’s Cup is 159 years, suggesting that it was “born” in 1851. In fact:
I suppose it’s fair to say that the Cup (ewer, actually) became the schooner yacht AMERICA’s in 1851, but it had no further relevence until 1857, when George Schuyler named it as the perpetual trophy for the series of challenge regattas he envisioned in what we call “the Deed of Gift.” Said Deed, by the way:
- The trophy was made in 1848, as an off-the-shelf item, which was bought and donated to the Royal Yacht Squadron as first prize for the special 1851 edition of the Squadron’s annual race around the Isle of Wight.
- The first regatta for which America’s Cup was the prize was sailed in 1870.
- The “real” age, therefore, is, at this writing, either 163 or 140 years, depending on which America’s Cup we’re discussing.
- Mandates races to be sailed on “ocean courses, free from headlands” only for DOG matches, which lack the “mutual consent” of challenger and defender, such as the one we just witnessed.
- Makes it perfectly clear that the trophy is not “owned” by any person or organization, but is held “in trust” by the yacht club which last won the regatta for which it is named.
- Requires the yacht club holding the trophy to conduct the next regatta, upon receipt of an appropriate challenge.
- Specifies no time interval between events, apart from a 10 month minimum, which may be waived my mutual consent.
- Does not, in its text or title, contain the words “America’s Cup”.