The Spectacle is back with AC 34
For quite some time I’d left the America’s Cup for what it was: A court room affair. It was not very clear where they were heading. Returning to them again I see that Larry Ellison who is the defender of record with his team Oracle, has made some clever moves to bring spectacle back to the race courses.
The 34th America’s Cup brings the competition for the oldest trophy in international sport back to the United States: New boats, a new format for the racing and television and web coverage as never before. See the above footage of the current 4th of 6 pre America’s cup series, called the AC World Series of races in uniform 45′ catamarans with wing sails to enable the various crews to train in very fast multi-hulls. There are fleet races as well as match races per venue and there will be a fleetrace champion and a match race champion per venue.
Past events of the AC World Series were in 2011 in Cascays, Portugal, in Plymouth, UK and in San Diego, USA.
In past contests we had Dutch designers involved: The (in)famous wing keel was developed and tested in Delft. Now we have two Dutchman as part of the Oracle Team: Dirk de Ridder and Piet van Nieuwenhuyzen.
New ways of following Sailing Races
Media coverage is fantastic. Here I’ve embedded the summary of last Monday’s race as then the weather conditions were more spectacular for multi-hull racing. One cat even capsized.
With the current new generation of cameras on board of the competing race machines (“boat” would be a “too slow” term for them) and in helicopters and on board of boats around the course, it feels like you are watching a Formula 1 race on land. Never before has it been easier to follow a sailing match.
Races for today are postponed until tomorrow as the wind was too strong in Naples today.
After Naples Venice, Italy, will host the AC World Series May 15-20, 2012 and Newport, Rhode Island, USA, will host the AC World Series June 26 – July 1, 2012
The New 75′AC class will be unveiled soon
Soon the class for the second and third stage, the match racing series for the Louis Vuiton Cup (04 July – 1 September 2013) and the Final Match races between the wi9nner of the Louis Vuiton Cup, who will be the Challenger of record and the Defender of record, will be unveiled: A 72′Catamaran with a wing mainsail. The winner of the Louis Vuiton cup may challenge the defender of record, Team Oracle in SFO Bay 7-22 September 2013.
The general idea is that the boats will be as equal as possible and that speed differences are caused by boat handling and racing experience of the teams only and not influenced by design differences.
The Italian Prada team entered the AC World Series for the first time: It won the final fleet race and with that won the Naples Fleet race Championship. Team Oracle Spithill became second and now leads the Fleetrace pack overall.
The Swedish Artemis team that you can see capsizing in the Monday race, became first in the Napels Match Races Championship. Here are the Naples results:
Last edited by GJE on April 16, 2012 at 11:24 am