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Old 02-02-2010, 09:09   #1
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NPR on America's Cup

You can link to the story from my blog, which contains some additional quotes that might be of interest or go directly here:

America's Cup Sails Into (And Over) Uncharted Seas : NPR

the radio version will air sometime this week.
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Old 02-02-2010, 09:40   #2
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Very interesting. It would be nice in the future to have both races. They both have their place in racing, however the classic monohull races will have more interest to the general sailing community. Sort of like NASCAR verses Formula I. I am looking forward to watching the cats race.
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Old 02-02-2010, 09:46   #3
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Fine report, Scott. Thanks for putting a sailing story on the air.

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Old 02-02-2010, 09:56   #4
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Water ballast

How are they moving the water ballast. It would take 100 gallons to replace four good sized men, not accounting for the mens ability to lean to windward - I suppose the water would have a lower centre of gravity. That's a lot of water to move quickly and I would suspect they used more then 4 people as "ballast" on those big racing vessels. The water is going to want to be at the lowest point so it won't cooperate! Anyone know about the pumps they use? How are they powered?
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Old 02-02-2010, 12:02   #5
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they talk about degrading the sport and the intent of the cup race and how it isn't going to be exciting but I'm here to say,
I think it'll be some of the fastest most heart pounding racing this world has seen. Can you visualize two monohulls ripping across the water at 8 knots tacking back and forth and sometimes missing by mere inches?! Now picture that same scenario at 15 knots! I think if they don't hit it'll be a miracle.
I can also picture the course getting much longer and perhaps in the distant future covering hundreds of miles, instead of just a dozen or so. I can also picture the Cup Commission creating two classes, monohul and multihul to compete. That would be the only way to make it fair for those who object to technology taking over, the rules will be re-written and history will be made!

I can hardly wait to see the start of the first event.
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Old 02-02-2010, 12:05   #6
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hummingway - I don't understand the particulars of this either. I tend to agree with Jobson though (Coutts said the same thing, btw, but that didn't make it into the piece), that powered winches and water ballast go too far. But it is these extreme boats that have made all that necessary. So, the question is, can big multis compete without losing the human element? If not, will the race just become an exhibition of technology rather than a real competition?
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Old 02-02-2010, 12:30   #7
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hummingway - I don't understand the particulars of this either. I tend to agree with Jobson though (Coutts said the same thing, btw, but that didn't make it into the piece), that powered winches and water ballast go too far. But it is these extreme boats that have made all that necessary. So, the question is, can big multis compete without losing the human element? If not, will the race just become an exhibition of technology rather than a real competition?
Originally the BOR boat did not have an engine, and was sailed sucessfully with just human power. But Alinghi put one on their boat, so BOR had to put one on their boat since it does speed up crew work.
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Old 02-02-2010, 13:11   #8
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they talk about degrading the sport and the intent of the cup race and how it isn't going to be exciting but I'm here to say,
I think it'll be some of the fastest most heart pounding racing this world has seen. Can you visualize two monohulls ripping across the water at 8 knots tacking back and forth and sometimes missing by mere inches?! Now picture that same scenario at 15 knots! I think if they don't hit it'll be a miracle.
I can also picture the course getting much longer and perhaps in the distant future covering hundreds of miles, instead of just a dozen or so. I can also picture the Cup Commission creating two classes, monohul and multihul to compete. That would be the only way to make it fair for those who object to technology taking over, the rules will be re-written and history will be made!

I can hardly wait to see the start of the first event.
I will be watching the race, but I predict it will be watching two boats sailing independently. This race will be over less than 1 minute after the second boat rounds the weather mark. Unlike the 12 meters which had decades to refine what worked best, one of these boats is going to be much faster upwind. The only reason the race won't be over just after the start is if the other is fast enough to pass on the off wind legs.

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Old 02-02-2010, 13:34   #9
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What I've heard is that Alinghi is at their best in the light winds, and BOR is at their best with more wind. SNG/Alinghi has set an upper limit of 15 knots of wind or 1 meter waves for the races, The wind speed will be measured fairly high up (60meters?), which often corresponds to around 10 knots near the water. BOR has protested the limits as being too low.
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Old 03-02-2010, 02:22   #10
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Multis have been the fastest things around the planet for a while now, I suppose even the americas cup crowd worked out they would be faster elsewhere.

Its sort of funny that our american friends are against multis in the america's cup (remember it was named for the boat not the country) I mean it was the Americans who first used a cat in a cup race.
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Old 03-02-2010, 08:42   #11
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Its sort of funny that our american friends are against multis in the america's cup (remember it was named for the boat not the country) I mean it was the Americans who first used a cat in a cup race.
I'm not sure what your basis is for this comment, Factor. It is BMW/Oracle Racing (the American team), after all, that has challenged Allinghi this time 'round using multis. And the American team, under Dennis Conner, trumped the Kiwi effort at circumventing the rules by defending with Stars and Stripes, a multi, in the 1988 version of the America's Cup race.

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Old 03-02-2010, 09:27   #12
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A race that's all about the boats and not at all about the boaters. Yachting has fallen victim to its own karma.
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Old 03-02-2010, 09:29   #13
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there's no doubt the boats are spectacular and damn fast. I think the only question is whether they are well suited for match racing. The first race on Monday will no doubt provide a lot of answers.
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Old 03-02-2010, 10:08   #14
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Does anyone know what sort of TV coverage will be available or the schedule? I went to the AmericasCup home page but couldn't locate anything specific... Curious about the multihulls from a technology perspective - seems like this race used to be Formula 1 and now is converted to a 1/4 mile NHRA race... might as well just do time trials and declare a winner.

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Old 03-02-2010, 18:20   #15
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The America's Cup web site will be airing web casts through the week.
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