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      Abbreviated rules   07/28/2017

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2Newts

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Everything posted by 2Newts

  1. I think you are very close to correct. I suspect the bubble teams are: BAR: will only go in if funding is sufficient to make them truly competitive. Maybe if the billionaire identified by Gladwell wants in and will join forces with BAR, then there might be something to it. Some USA team: maybe LE kicks in a few bucks or some technology to help another team, but I think he's out of the primary role. If de Vos or someone else mounts a challenge, will likely be a bottom feeder with no real chance. Some Aussie team: More or less the same position as a new US team in that any brand-new team has to go through a couple of cycles to be competitive, and does anyone down under want to take on a multi-cycle commitment at this time? Some poodle team: If "Mr. Prada" (I like that) finds he's the only challenger, maybe he'll bankroll someone else. Heck, if there is a 2-boat cap, his bankrolling someone else actually gets him to a 4-boat cap. It's all speculation at this point, isn't it. And some have better access to inside information than others. I have none. But...
  2. I think it's more like: "The design process is going to be the reverse of last time. Good teams will be looking at the rule and the proposed course and working out if they really want to spend a shitload of money or if they should be looking to optimise their resources elsewhere."
  3. I mentioned this in a post about the live experience in Bermuda: the race village was great but not because it made directly watching the races so wonderful. To the extent that you wanted to actually follow the race you needed to watch it on the massive screens.
  4. "It would appear that one Rich American Called Larry Ellison has had enough – the cost of the Cup has proved too high even for him. Which leaves one to wonder just who will show up?" I hope I'm wrong, but it seems to me that the Kiwis are narrowing the field down to an insanely narrow bunch: The nationality rules knock out most potential teams and leave really only France, UK, Italy, US, NZ, Australia, plus a few others at the margins (Sweden, Spain, etc). The location and need to have the races in the European and US night time, in winter, knock out any teams relying on sponsorship that relies on a positive ROI, e.g. not vanity sponsorship. That decimates a slew of US/Eur sponsors such as Groupama, MAPFRE, etc. The cost of building a new platform and being competitive knocks out anyone who can't commit Larry-level dollars and Larry-level technology. So here's my depressing prediction for teams making it to the line: ENTZ Luna Rosa One Aussie team backed 75/25 by private/sponsorship dollars That's it. I think that Sir Ben will try but will find that Land Rover is only willing to chip in a few bucks and will come up short on raising the rest. I think that one or two US billionaires will toy with it but will ultimately decide that they cannot be competitive on a new platform in such a short period of time.
  5. Here's my question. It is now September 2017. The race is supposed to be about Feb 2021. That's less than 3.5 years; more like 3 years from now to needing to be sailing and practicing in your boat. Best case scenario is the protocol comes out this month and then the design rules this winter. Maybe. So you're talking about 2.5 years from getting the design brief to needing to be up and sailing. Outside of a few ultra billionaires, who could do that? Doesn't this make it even MORE of a billionaire's competition than it was under LE? Or are they going full Volvo and making it really one-design?
  6. Wow, that's for certain.
  7. Color me skeptical. I'm open to all ideas they may have and willing to be impressed, but some sort of ungainly 20 foot wide triangle shaped mono with wicked appendages, just to say it's a mono, seems ridiculous. And going back to narrow monos with fixed keels would be a bore. And relying on canting keels seems to defeat the possibility of fast-tacking match racing. Well, I'm not a naval architect. Just enjoy sailing and technology. So let's see what the experts come up with. Oh, and I dislike the idea of one-design for the AC. Set some parameters and let the designers design.
  8. are the monster exclusion zones new? what are they keeping the fleet away from?
  9. I said it before in another thread, and I believe it more now than ever. LE doesn't like to lose. Better stated, LE doesn't lose. And if ever there is any degree of chance in the outcome, LE determines ahead of time how he can personally or professionally win regardless of the outcome. So in Bermuda, if he had won on the water, great, he wins overall and gets another AC in Bermuda in AC50s with the hope of a couple more teams. But he lost on the water, so my question is how he figured out how to win despite the loss. And I think Tornado-Cat has his finger on it: The Bermuda 5 will do their own event in AC50s and do their best to marginalize the AC proper. In which case we have a fight on our hands. In one corner: LE and some other 'lesser' billionaires try to establish an F1-style circuit, with a full slate of events in 2018 leading up to the victor winning a new cup bearing the name of a sponsor that signs onto a long term deal. Maybe the "Louis Vitton Cup." Assets in their corner: a whole lot of money, 5 teams ready to go, boats ready to go, bases ready to go, probably tv contracts ready or near ready to go. In the other corner: GD and LR, trying to run an AC in Feb 2020 in a manner similar to the way it's traditionally been, as a 1-off regatta with a long lead up. Assets in their corner: the Americas Cup, support of the entire Kiwi nation, support of one billionaire. I'm not so sure anyone on this forum should declare a winner in that fight before the fight itself takes place. LE's money and ego against the prestige of the AC, is what it comes down to. I don't know. If you were one of the world's 'lesser' billionaires or if you run a company with a big marketing budget, and you loved sailing, and you were faced with joining LE or fighting LE, I don't think you'd have an easy decision to make.
  10. Of course it all depends on what the protocol ACTUALLY says when it come out, but...speculation is fun. Problems with CiC are: 1. If the threshold is a certain percentage CiC, how do you accurately measure it without spending millions on some accounting firm? 2. If the threshold is certain components, how do you make it fair to countries without specialities in those components? If electronics are included, most countries are in trouble. If spars are included, most countries are in trouble. If sails are included, most countries are in trouble. Layer these and figure out which countries can construct or manufacture the electronics AND the spars AND the sails. How many is that, maybe 4? Not likely including Italy. 3. If it includes design, how do you measure where design work is done in the age of the internet? Seems to me that the danger is that GD is making the cup both more expensive and narrowing competition. On the other hand, maybe it's just hull (and foils), in which case most countries can manufacture high-end graphite composites these days.
  11. I think we've pretty much flogged this horse well past its expiry. Poor thing. The point is that nationality rules would be very difficult to establish and enforce in an age of multinational corporations, the internet, multiple passports, and passports-for-sale, UNLESS the RNZYS is looking to stack the deck a la the NYYC back in the day. Good on RNZYS if they can figure this out and keep it fair, but I suspect that it's a waste of time and brain power better suited to determining things like the boat, the format, and what to do about the world series. I think it would be a shame if the AC were delayed or pushed later in any way due to the RNZYS/ENTZ spending weeks or months on nationality rules. Either don't have them or make the standard a bit hazy. "Bona fide connection to the nation" anyone?
  12. So how does this work? Southern Spars can build spars for the NZ, South Africa, USA, and Spain teams only? But only if their designers relocate to each of those four countries to do the design work on those four projects. "Alright team, time to wrap up on team NZ, we have a flight to catch to Capetown so that we can design the mast for Team South Aftica. Remember to pack up your laptops. And can one of you guys remember to pack up the server? That has to go carry-on - it's quite fragile."
  13. Wow, this rule will certainly help the USA. No national language = whole world to choose from. How about Team Guatemala? 25 official languages there...including English.
  14. Not sure if you are serious or not, but these ideas are (a) nuts and (b) romanticizing the original race without recognizing what actually happened. First off, the America did sail across the ocean on its own but then went directly into a ship yard (in France, if I remember the book Low Black Schooner well enough) for refits to make it better suited to racing around the Isle of Wight. So if we were to envision a modern equivalent, teams could sail a Volvo 60 across the ocean, take it into the chop shop, and come out with a foiling cat. Maybe they could keep a 6-foot section of the original in some part of the boat that doesn't matter much for performance so that they could say it was constructed in country... Secondly, the first race was a parade. The America lead nearly the entire time, even accounting for a long period during which she got caught in irons. The race was boring even by 19th century standards. Many of the British boats didn't even want to race her because they recognized from the get-go that the America arrived with a better, more modern design. Fundamentally the format has been changed, many times over, to make the racing better, to encourage more design risks (like the America herself, like Reliance, like Australia II, like the cyclors), and to make the racing generally, outside some fairly major exceptions, fairer.
  15. Is there enough benefit in continuity to have AC36 in 2.5 years (~Feb 2020) versus the benefits (more design and planning time) that would come with a 3.5 year gap?
  16. I just spent two days at the races and thought I'd share my thoughts about it and open a thread for it. I hope some others have or will be here and can chime in. This is more about the experience than about the racing as for that there are other robust threads, though of course the quality of the racing does have an impact on the quality of the experience. So here we go in somewhat chronological order. The Bermudian authorities have done an amazing job with the logistics of getting people to and from the village. My son and I used the ferry from Hamilton and other friends have taken taxis all the way out and others drove, parked, and took the shuttle over. All of us reported nearly a nearly flawless process. They made it clear where to go, it was orderly, the ferries were mostly efficient. There was a clear benefit to getting one of the smaller faster ferries but unfortunately that just came to luck and if you got pointed to the big one ("M/V Bermudian", I think) then you had an extra 15 minutes load time due to all the people, and extra 15 minutes unload, and a slower ride across. But that is really the only nit I can pick. Upon arriving at the village the process of entering was quick and efficient and in the shade. Bravo Bermuda, well done. You could have made the fans' first experience with the day like getting to a NY Football Giants game, but you didn't. It was hot, both days and more so on Sunday. So hot that my 5 year old son started overheating. But the design of the village includes a copious amount of shade, astroturf to cool the walkways, misting sprays, and lots and lots of water stations. Without any need to go to the medical tent I got him cooled back down. It helps, of course, that the breeze was blowing, which is sort of the point isn't it. The kids' activities were also really well thought out. "Masts" for the kids to climb, "catamarans" for them to sail, an interactive educational area that included local Bermuda sea life that my son loved as we got live sea urchins to hold, and lots of oversized pillows in the shade for taking a break. The sounds of kids having fun was almost as deafening as the sound stage. Which, IMO, had decent live bands. My little boy had his first experience listening to a live cover of Highway to Hell so loud that it reverberated through our bodies. He loved it. Future headbanger, I think! That or future boyfriend of super hot lead singer who he could not take his eyes off of ... and she kept smiling and pointing to him so that just made him blush! Great little vignette experience that added to the overall enjoyment. Then, there's the food and beverage. Ok, so major deduction in points here. I have been fortunate enough to be at baseball stadiums (stadia, for you grammarians out there) during the world series, sold out NFL games, the US Open, the Masters, and other major events. Some have long lines and expensive food/drink (I'm looking at you, USTA) and others have short lines and inexpensive food (yeah Masters), and this event clearly felt like it was copying the USTA. Boo. Seriously, when will events like this get it: sell the food and drink at cost or at a loss and make sure that the lines move fast and you will get outsized props from the fans. It will be among the first two or three things they say about the event. And it's not like the ticket was all that much less expensive than a day at the Masters either. Of course they are getting less tv revenue, but I do think that the organizers need to consider the benefit of getting more people to want to say more good things so that, ultimately, they can get more tv revenue down the line. We had grandstand seats, other friends did the various lounges or boats. For going with children/families, the grandstand was perfect. I understand that if you are going to make a long boozy day out of it that one of the other options may be better, but well done by the organizers to have different sub-venues for different parts of the audience. The grandstand was cool and breezy and the vibe was great. Having the announcers right there was good. The intermission entertainment was hilarious although overtly commercial as they showed kids racing in a new Bic sailboat that is a step up from Optis. We didn't care about the commercialism, it was still great fun. Like watching the peewee hockey players between periods. OK, so the racing. Watching it live was no better than watching on tv. Sorry, but it's not true stadium seating. The boats were so far away that you had no ability to discern relative position. On Sunday the wind direction was such that one end of the line was obscured by a point of land and the other end was obscured by the spectator fleet. Maybe some of the spectator boats had better views when the boats were in that part of the course. Our only good views were of the finish, which was indeed pretty cool, and of the massive tv showing the race live to the grandstand ... which was sort of the same as watching on a massive tv. It did seem to be a feed that was just for the village, and not the same one from NBC. And it was technically quite cool to watch the commentators do their work. Their job was not easy. Since they were watching it on tv along with the rest of us they were dependent on the feed for the information they had. I'm not sure how you would improve on this. In the end, I suppose you could say that my opinion is that there are two totally different experiences. There is the village experience for those who enjoy live events with a myriad of options, and there is the tv experience for those who enjoy watching the race. Sorry to say, but in this case they are somewhat mutually exclusive. My son and I had a fabulous time during two days there and short of a few quibbles (shorter food lines, sell it for less), I would not change much. And the Bermudian authorities did a great job supporting it. And for those who are looking to say that no one is here let me say that it seemed to be at least 10,000 people at the village and there is not a taxi to be found on the island. Then number of large yachts here is unprecedented. Office space that has been vacant for years has been occupied and homes rented for months at a time. My Bermudian friends were quite emotional about all this has brought their country and even more upset than the American fans at the results on the water. My advice, in the unlikely event that anyone should ever ask, would be to optimize the two experiences to be as great as possible on totally separate tracks. The tv experience has been deeply discussed in other threads and clearly needs some changes; the attendance experience was wonderful but not perfect. Whatever happens with the cup, I do hope that this experience can be brought to more people in more places more frequently. It need not be racing for the cup itself, but it clearly needs fan and tv support to work. Which I hope it does. Cheers to you all. 2N
  17. Wind direction has slowly clocked all week and at this moment is now north of due west, quite light (I'd guess 6-8 based on the waves), and it's overcast and super humid. Given how it has trended and is now, I tend to believe the GFS/NAM models showing 5-12 out of the SW +/- 30 degrees.
  18. Not a soul. The walking route from the ferry to the entrance provided no space for hawking, and the Hamilton ferry docks simply had no hawking going on despite there being space for it. I can't tell you about anything near the car parking or the taxi drop-off. I can say that the Bermuda military is present everywhere (yes, they have a military) and getting as nitty as making sure people walk the correct way through the corrals. I am sure hawking is happening, but it's not like NYC where it takes place practically under the watchful eyes of the local cops. On the other hand, they were VERY loose with the definition of what a 4-year-old kid looks like. They were letting in 8 and 9 year olds for free without batting an eye. Yeah, not that I've heard of here! Although to be fair I did not check air b&b months ago and I am sure that there were some rooms for rent. A small house/condo, tho, would go for a multiple of what you paid.
  19. I will say that the rumor I heard several times is that this is exactly the plan if ENTZ go on to win: continue with RC's F1-like league and take as many teams as possible (Artemis, SoftBank, Groupama, maybe even BAR and OR, plus some new ones) telling the Kiwis that if they would like the AC to be part of the circuit that's fine but the circuit continues regardless. Not saying it would work, but that it's their intention. If you think about it from LE's perspective it sort of makes sense. It is said that LE does not like to lose but I'd go a step further and say that LE does not lose, ever. He figures out a way, in advance, to make sure he wins no matter what happens on the water. So if you buy into that idea then it makes sense that he already had a plan B figured out and already has at least a handful of teams signed up to it. These are big IFs. If you believe the rumors, and if you believe that LE had a plan B ready, then the choice that ENTZ faces is sort of stark: either play along with LE/RC and hold the AC in two years in AC50s in New Zealand with a world series in multiple locations leading up to it, or find other teams willing to finance the design and development of another platform in order to face off in New Zealand in three or four years time. Personally I don't buy it. I think LE walks away. I think his "win" in his mind is what he has already achieved. I think he knows that the F1-like league is a dream that cannot be achieved without the AC as the trophy.
  20. OMG I just might. Never been, always wanted to go, and kids will be the right age! Wifey and I literally tossed a coin to choose between NZ and Aus for honeymoon and ended up in northern Queensland.
  21. Tough to tell since there were so few opportunities for the OR fans to make themselves heard, so I could be way off here, but I'd say about 80% OR. If you throw in the "ambivalent-just-here-to-enjoy-the-spectacle" as a third option, it was probably about 15% ENTZ, 60% OR, 25% just chilling. Really really hard to tell tho.
  22. With enough deck space, you could power it this way:
  23. It was just pointed out to me that when DC brought the cup back to the US, there was a ticker-tape parade for him in NYC and he met with President Reagan. Somehow I don't think the same would be afforded to JS should he win again.
  24. LOL. It sure would. I'm not convinced that a Class40/Volvo60 could make it all the way without hitting or snagging something submerged, which a multi is less likely to do. But yeah, an ocean-going race boat designed for the southern ocean should be able to keep going no matter what the wind/seas are.
  25. Three years into it and we seem to have the answer that Jake asked in one of the first videos: what kind of vessel can get to Alaska first. 2015: F-25 Trimaran 2016: Marstrom M32 Catamaran 2017: 28' 8.5 Trimaran Some monohulls have been really close, but as soon as the boats get past Bella Bella the multis just put on the afterburners. So, what would it take for a mono to win? What kind of boat could do it? If one were to buy a Class40 or an old Volvo boat, crew it fully, and sail 24/7, could you win?