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SuperFoiler Grand Prix 2018

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The SuperFoiler Grand Prix kicks off in Adelaide, South Australia on 2 February, 2018. It would be great if anyone attending can post pix, reports, gossip, whatever.

Who'll be there? Who'll win? Will they even get around the course in what are seriously challenging boats to sail?

If possible I'll be at one day of the Gold Coast event (16–18 Feb), should be a bottler.

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Super Foiler- latest video:

 

 

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I have no idea how they can hold a series when nobody has yet managed to sail one around a course and finish, even in practice. Outteridge, Ashby and Jensen are still swimming. the boat needs a lot more development but they have run out of time (and money) as they need to make all the boats the same. There will be races where only 1 boat finishes and a real chance that in others, nobody will finish. their only hope is that the wind stays below 10 knots.

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They have just launched the 4th boat I believe.  I hate to say it but they would be better off waiting for next season.  If the above scenario happens it could do a lot of damage to their planned televised circuit.

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11 hours ago, Tornado_ALIVE said:

They have just launched the 4th boat I believe.  I hate to say it but they would be better off waiting for next season.  If the above scenario happens it could do a lot of damage to their planned televised circuit.

They have 6 of them at Woollahra sailing club had a look the other day. The TV coverage is already in place it will be happening, real TV not YouTube.

A bit of crash and burn makes for good TV, since there can only be one winner the old saying win or die either way you get publicity will enable the sponsors of the boats that don't win to get good coverage.

I reckon those who figure out how to sail it quickest will win, Nathan would have to be the favourite.

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Anymore news on the TV coverage?

Will it just be a highlights package in winter sometime or will we see it prime time (or something in between)?

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1 hour ago, Jethrow said:

Anymore news on the TV coverage?

Will it just be a highlights package in winter sometime or will we see it prime time (or something in between)?

This is fucked, I can't find anything at home (albeit I don't have a television, but still have access via internet), they haven't put it up on 7, 7mate, 7+.

Then to have a laugh, my old man called me up today wanting to watch it, and through all actual telecast the next 3 days are booked up with no mention of "super" anything.

Fucking Channel 7 -.-

Australian Media is a bigger joke than Trumps presidency.

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From Superfoiler FB

"Racing on Saturdays and Sundays will be lie (sic) streamed and a more highly produced version on 7Mate a few weeks later."

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Further down on Superfoiler FB...

"7Mate starting late Feb. Live coverage will be live streamed on OVO"

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38 minutes ago, angles said:

Further down on Superfoiler FB...

"7Mate starting late Feb. Live coverage will be live streamed on OVO"

wtf is OVO?

The last post I saw said live stream on 7+ the channel 7 app.

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The more I watch these things, the more concerned I am of the sailors safety.  You do not want to hit the back of that board on a big nose dive.

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29 minutes ago, Tornado_ALIVE said:

The more I watch these things, the more concerned I am of the sailors safety.  You do not want to hit the back of that board on a big nose dive.

Me too! Let's hope our fears are not real.

 

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19 minutes ago, 17mika said:

Me too! Let's hope our fears are not real.

 

interesting that there are a lot of shots of helms sitting in down wind.  Harder to stay on the boat from trap but at least if you hit hard the next stop isn't the dagger board.

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They were talking chicken lines for crews.  I haven’t seen evidence off them yet however do not recommend them on a Foiler after my experience.

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The Superfoiler Facebook page is saying, 

Fri: live updates via twitter, Instagram, Facebook

Sat & Sun: International LIVE streaming via superfoiler.com

I don't know if that means only streaming outside Australia, or if everyone gets it. I hope it's everyone...

 

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Pretty excited to see how they go.  Good talent and not quite fully dialed in boats should be a heartwarming pile of mayhem

 

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I wish them well, but waiting for the occasional post on their social media to let people know what is happening with their first race is like watching paint dry. I'm outta here...

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Yeah the video footage of the start was a joke. So far away and really bumpy. They need to get a drone or two happening. Fingers crossed the live coverage tomorrow will be better.

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Mark 2: Euroflex, Pavement Only boats foiling - half a leg ahead. 5-9kts

Does it mean they had to postpone because there was too much wind then they only have 2 boats foiling when racing?

No live video on the first racing day is really dropping people interest even before it has started.

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I think we got accustomed to the standard set at the last America's cup that Larry's billions provided. So Euroflex won from start to finish....

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Yeah saw that in the Facebook video, going to be hard to edit that to make it look like close racing.

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I love how their communication avoids at all costs the words sail and boat, any nautical term in fact. It's called machine, craft, platform and foiler. The foils are explained, the sails are ignored. From a marketing standpoint, they know what they're doing!!

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Reading quotes from the sailors and that pic makes it seem like they may have let the cart get in front of the horse when developing this series around that boat.

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Am i the only one who thinks that this project seems unfinished and all this are a bit to early and premature???

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I think everyone including the people running it know that.  But they made commitments to sponsors and a TV network to fund the whole thing so now they're digging themselves out of a hole from the bottom.

 

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My biggest concern is about crew safety. Hope that everything is gonna be ok.

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While everybody knows the boats are very under developed and are not ready for racing, the problems are all of their own making and were avoidable. To start with, they sailed for many months trying to develop the boat with people who had no idea what they were doing. To try to learn to foil on this at the same time as working out what was wrong was madness, and huge arrogance. When they finally woke up to the fact that after many months they still could not sail the boat round a course, they had to employ the 3 best foiling sailors in Australia at great expense. This left them short of both time and budget - the boats have problems that they simply don't have the time or money to sort, even down to simple things like a decent mainsheet system.

The other problem is that most of the teams have had no time in the boats. Nathan, Glenn and Goobs have sailed the boat for 4 or 5 weeks and are getting to grips with it, but still have regular huge moments when there is any decent breeze around. What led them to believe that crews could simply turn up and race with only a few days practice? 

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19 minutes ago, A Class Sailor said:

While everybody knows the boats are very under developed and are not ready for racing, the problems are all of their own making and were avoidable. To start with, they sailed for many months trying to develop the boat with people who had no idea what they were doing. To try to learn to foil on this at the same time as working out what was wrong was madness, and huge arrogance. When they finally woke up to the fact that after many months they still could not sail the boat round a course, they had to employ the 3 best foiling sailors in Australia at great expense. This left them short of both time and budget - the boats have problems that they simply don't have the time or money to sort, even down to simple things like a decent mainsheet system.

The other problem is that most of the teams have had no time in the boats. Nathan, Glenn and Goobs have sailed the boat for 4 or 5 weeks and are getting to grips with it, but still have regular huge moments when there is any decent breeze around. What led them to believe that crews could simply turn up and race with only a few days practice? 

+100

I followed  loosely but could never understand why there were no top A-Class guys at the helm

Another thing: if I read correctly, these boats have some electronic foil controls? given the amount of effort and talent that same thing required in the AC, is a reason to have not only top foiling helms, but AC people like they now have.  

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To get good windward performance and spectacular audience viewing they've gone to extreme depth float and rudder foils - and this seems to be a problem.

The boats fly too high, foils cavitate and then they smash down and throw the crew about willy-nilly on trapezes. Good video visuals but defecation for the crews.

A small suggestion: how about a simple but high aspect ratio daggerboard in the main hull to gain high pointing and speed to windward ... and reduce the depth/draft of the lifting float foils - and instead of the at-the-moment  compromise windward/flight main foil attempts,. refine the float foils for lift only, meaning stable platform flight.

Guarantee the machines would be just as fast ... and they wouldn't crash/burn so regularly.

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Sorry, Groucho, its nothing to do with the depth of foils. In theory, the deeper the foils the more forgiving the set up, because as the boat rises, there is more time for the foils to self correct and for the sailors to adjust the amount of lift in the foils. Weighed against that is the idea that the less foil there is in the water, the less drag and therefore the faster you go, meaning that for speed you want to be high but for safety you want to be low. The way the foils work, you don't actually need that much foil in the water to stop leeway.

The real problem you have with this type of boat is that ride height is as much a function of rig load as it is the foils. The lighter the boat and bigger the rig, the more the loads from the rig come into play. My take is that at the moment, the rig is too big, cannot be played fast enough due to poor sheeting systems and the foils need to be set up with too much lift to compensate. In simplified terms, with the A, you need to move huge amounts of mainsheet, easing it right out to unload the foils and get up and then pulling on the sheet really fast in order to stop the boat rising too high. You then sheet to control ride height - ease to go higher and sheet in to keep the boat down. The less you ease to get foiling, the more lift you need in the foils because of the loads and the more likely the boat is to jump out.

The Superfoiler is in a bit of a viscous circle. It's rig is big and heavy, making the boat heavier than it should be and over powered. It needs the power to get going, but once it is going the rig is way too big and dominates. Without any proper calculations, my guess is that you could  go with a rig that is 2/3rds the size, build a boat that ends up as being half the weight and it would have been easier to sail. The other thing i would have done from scratch is to go with a 4 point foiler, so you don't need to lift the windward foil. It would have had 2 benefits. I think it would have produced more stable and controlled flight and made the boat a lot safer, with nothing to hit on the way to the bow when things go wrong. Unfortunately, the boat was designed by M&M, whose models seem to be flawed in the way they predict 3 point V boards being faster than so called 4 point Z foils.I think this is due to lack of experience with Z foils - their Nacra 17 Z foils are really average.

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4 Point foiling would have made for quicker manoeuvres and more importantly, foils down meaning you eliminate at least, sliding forward at pace into them.

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Pure speculation from my side, but just looking at videos and photos I agree with Aclass.  Rigs look too big and hard to manage, so boats to go bow down ridicously fast as soon as gusts hits, even with very little leeward heel.

EDIT: and maybe rudders are a tad short, compared to CB.

 

 

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I really hope that none of the sailors get seriously injured.  There are some really good guys sailing these boats and safety should increase as they gain experience.  These early days look sketchy.  I do not like that photo of the boat leaping out of the water with the crew getting thrown.  Looks like a car crash.  I understand that the sailors do their own cost/benefit analysis and assume a calculated risk when they step onboard.  I also understand that the event (class) organizer pursued a design that would produce an exciting TV product with thrills and spills.  My question is if someone gets hurt, then what is Morrelli & Melvin's share of the responsibility?  Is it OK to design a boat with little regard to the safety of those onboard?  If that is what the client request, then is the design office absolved of responsibility?  Aside from ethical obligations, it seems to me that market forces would motivate a design office to defend safety.  It cannot be good for business if someone gets seriously injured on one of your designs.  This class is going to either end up being awesome, or someone is going to get hurt.  My fingers are crossed hoping for an awesome outcome.     

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Pretty sure that the rather dramatic sequence of photos from Andrea (on Superfoiler Instagram) was when they snagged a mark with their rudder. Hence the air, and busted arse.

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Can't find any scheduled coverage on 7mate, 7plus, 7live. Nothing about yesterday's race on 7  in their morning sports bulletin.

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1 hour ago, sail(plane) said:

 

Another thing: if I read correctly, these boats have some electronic foil controls? 

 When I looked at them they had no electric or hydraulic devices to control foils all done by block and tackle, yes there are some wires I suspect that might be for collecting data.

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1 hour ago, A Class Sailor said:

 

The Superfoiler is in a bit of a viscous circle. It's rig is big and heavy, making the boat heavier than it should be and over powered. It needs the power to get going, but once it is going the rig is way too big and dominates. Without any proper calculations, my guess is that you could  go with a rig that is 2/3rds the size, build a boat that ends up as being half the weight and it would have been easier to sail.

 

The boats are all carbon not very big I doubt they could be built any lighter considering the loads from 3 on trapeze , the weight saving from a smaller rig would be minimal IMO.

I don't think easy to sail was a consideration when designing them with the promotors background in 18 ft skiffs

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Nothing from twitter/FB or their web page about today's races. I'm guessing the breeze is up and we're in postponment mode.

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5 minutes ago, Chasm said:

YT live is up and running

Tech 2 structural damage.

Screen Shot 2018-02-03 at 1.20.03 AM.png

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Looks like the rudder hit something.  Apparently they hit the mark earlier when rounding.

Screen Shot 2018-02-03 at 1.28.46 AM.png

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Time to go back to the old "Don't touch the mark" rules? ;) 

Also needs a bigger float at the mast tip. :D

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The livestream commentary leaves a bit to be desired. The tv version should be better

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Time in the boat is paying huge dividends for the Euroflex guys. Can't see them being beaten unless they make a big mistake.

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I am the only one feeling a bit underwhelmed by the whole thing.I thought the goal of the series was to re create the Classic 18 footers from 20 years ago, eg fast close racing with a good sized fleet and plenty of spills and thrills. in SF yep we have speed and spills but close racing ??I am not sure this is going to bring in the average punter off the street.Would they have been better off getting a fleet of foiling cats ,? GC 32, say around 10, easier to sail, could have had more high profile skippers eg Slingsby, Outteridge, Jensen, McNight all racing each other , would be great viewing.

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Not feeling underwhelmed, slightly annoyed at the lack of encouragement from some though.

I agree that they have probably over promised and under delivered (the time trap of attracting sponsors and media coverage), but people in this forum, as sailors, should appreciate that the mammoth task they have with a new boat, a new series etc etc. I don't think they are trying to recreate the 18 footers, just using that as their experience. I remember that the 18fters had a lot of naysayers and took a while to gain momentum as well. 

They have started with six boats, that fleet will grow with support and experience and then the excitement will also grow. Just replicating the other series' with the 32 will be even more ho hum as the 'Extreme' Sailing teams are finding. The average punter? They don't even go to the existing series, really, no more Extreme is Sydney as an eg. Some of the high profile names may be to us, but the average punter does not give a toss, they want the thrills and spills as you say - then the skippers names will start to be known.

Give them time, give them support, more and more sailors and high profile sponsors will come... I hope.

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I just watched the video from Saturday. Nothing like actually racing to concentrate the mind. It was impressive to see the back markers catching up with each race. Overall it was much better than one might have expected but it is sure hard to cover on TV when the boats are that fast so they get that spread out. It's cool to watch knowing he standard of the sailors. For once it's not hype to say that the crew of Euroflex is absolutely world class. I think if they get a few more boats and the teams learn how to sail them it will be quite worthwhile. But these conditions were really ideal, we'll see how entertaining they are in. 6 kts. I still fondly remember the M32 races Clean was commenting for in various Scandinavian capitals a couple of years ago. That was close racing on appropriately short courses  with lots of action and interesting across a range of wind strengths. I have not watched much G32 racing but what I have seen hasn't been as fun. We shall see with this series but I will certainly watch. 

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Really enoyed the show. 

Whatching the euroflex guys alone tack and gybe is incredible. And others will catch up soon.

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7 hours ago, Chasm said:

YT live is up and running

 

 

This is not superfoiling... it's supercrap. All this is a huge embarrassment. Sailing is about wind, sea, waves, nature... bouncing between jetty in a commercial harbor has nothing to do with sailing. This racing location is about as crappy as it can get: muddy water in an industrial context.

There was basically no racing with the front boat 1km ahead and half of the "fleet" not finishing. Spectators? Huh? To watch some of the best sailors of the world there was nearly nobody. If Glen Ashby comes to my local club, sailing on an Opti, there would be ten times more spectators!

And overall the quality and realization of this vid put us back 10-15 years backwards.

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The spectators are there, I tried to get a ticket for tomorrow at $299 dollars and they are sold out, so plenty of support, there's some hard markers on here. This is an entirely new boat going at incredible speeds in a tight area where spectators can see the whole course, sure some teams are going to be better than others to start with but as the years roll by this spectacle will get better and better

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I think this will be exciting racing once all the teams come close to the level of Euroflex. I don't understand what you guys were expecting. Just think about about what time it takes to develop and master a foiling boat and how fast this project went from concept to a racing series.

We get great sailing and live helicopter footage on YouTube without stupid country restrictions. What else can you ask for and where else in sailing do we get that?
 

The only problem I see is, that the average spectator could lose interest before they really get going.

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Yep. Props to the makers for making it happen. I guess ot took a huuuuuge effort go get to this point.

Boats are not perfect, but they still are the coolest thing around. Sailors are great and will master the boats soon. production, for being the first try, was mode than decent, with real expert commentary amd true insight.

And it is all for free on youtube 

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4 hours ago, madboutcats said:

The spectators are there, I tried to get a ticket for tomorrow at $299 dollars and they are sold out, so plenty of support, there's some hard markers on here. This is an entirely new boat going at incredible speeds in a tight area where spectators can see the whole course, sure some teams are going to be better than others to start with but as the years roll by this spectacle will get better and better

we'll see...

even as an avid sailor and racer.., i have extremely limited interest in watching other people sail - sure, i'll watch a few minutes (like 2 or 3) here and there, but the possibility that i am going to follow the competition, the way some people follow other professional sports is zero.

and my experience is.., that no matter how hard they try to market it.., and no matter how hard they try to make it look and sound like other sports (say motor car racing).., non-sailors will _not_ have enough interest to keep it going - sure they may watch a few minutes, and say "that's cool", but they will never be fans.

investors can loose their money forever on these projects, and i wouldn't care at all.., but what worries me is that the whole approach will somehow infect the sailing that I do.., and ruin it

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I think they rushed the event a little bit. Pretty obvious that the neither the boats nor the teams were prepared enough. It'll be interesting to compare this to the last event. Wind conditions were pretty fortunate. The boats looked to be making terrible VMG in the lighter stuff. It was so much better for the last two races. The harbor wasn't a particularly spectacular backdrop for the event unfortunately. Nice event overall considering this was only the first four races.

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I thought the coverage was pretty good - actually better than I expected. The course was a bit narrow, and the fleet was spaced out in the days first race, but by the last race it was obvious that the other teams were getting better with their boats and all four boats that raced, finished much closer. I really don't see how you can complain, the coverage is free, and it's not as though we are inundated with yacht racing on TV. I'll take as much as I can get. So yeah, I'll be watching again today (the weather is grim up here and there's bugger all else to do) and when they come to the Gold Coast I plan on driving up and watching the event - at least the second two days.

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I thought it was good coverage, only real complaint is not knowing when the start was, (no countdown?)

There seemed to be 3 groups of performance, Euroflex was in a league of their own, then the next 2 (ID and someone) and then the bottom 2 ).

Light winds they are dogs downwind, dull to watch.  I watched some 18s being live streamed after in 20+ knots and they were FAR more entertaining to watch.

I think in 15-20, these thing swill be very cool to see, I'll watch again. I think they have potential.

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Hard to find the mouth of a tidal river with pristine blue waters, the course location would have been picked so that the race could be watched from inside the terminal building, that is as close as possible to the action, with an incredible view, its giant windows and about 3 stories up. The great thing about the sport of sailing is I can do what interests me, I don't see why the nay sayers have to come out and bag something just because it doesn't interest them, good on the guys for having the vision to pull this together and I hope they only listen to the positive people and not the whiney minority that want the world to revolve around their wants

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Reminds me of the early days of Bathurst(I'm 65 this year) with machines with very high power and still under development.This can only go from strength to strength. A bit of gaffa tape wont get the  boat back on the water will be interesting to see how it is repaired overnight. Keep going dudes, I'll watch. Bottman   ps Was there an accident earlier and the front of the floats broken off?

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Tech 2 had an incident in the Friday race and lost about 2ft off the back of the port float?

Boat is already back at Innovation Composites in Nowra being rebuilt, only major incident yesterday was the capsize. 

The commentators need some practice or to just get wise in general, got sick of hearing the boats referred to as "machines" and how blazingly fast they are, and then when they put the speeds up for an individual boat I never saw more than 18 knots, and finally what made me laugh then switch off was the comment referring to the sailors as "the titans of the sailing world" give it a rest kids.

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Yeah some (most) of the commentary was pretty cringe worthy - trying to talk up how close the racing was, elite sailors, and lots of repetition. 

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Well!  That was different.

The boats/craft/machines look really difficult to sail well. The dream team were definitely way ahead of the others which probably equates to the combined skill and experience of the crew. They were a pleasure to watch but at times they could look a bit ordinary as well.

I have no doubt that an organisation which can launch 6 radically new boats, organise teams and get an event happening in such a ridiculously short time frame, will sort out the minor niggles as the event unfolds.

The venue left a bit to be desired and I thought the racetrack was too long, but given stronger winds (hopefully today Sunday) maybe that will be less of an issue.

James and Tessa did a great job of commenting but who was the dude who seemed to be the #1? He was hopeless, whiny and absolutely lacking any understanding of what was really going on. Maybe he was there to interpret for the masses but I found him to be really annoying.

In regards to venues I can't wait to see how they handle the Gold Coast Broadwater. That WILL be interesting.

Roll on Day 3!

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Whingers are going to whinge (because they're a miserable bunch of anal passages) - but this racing boat design and the crews look really good  - even at this very inaugural stage.

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On 2/3/2018 at 9:51 AM, Mohammed Bin Lyin said:

 When I looked at them they had no electric or hydraulic devices to control foils all done by block and tackle, yes there are some wires I suspect that might be for collecting data.

Wrong! They foils have both manual and electronic controls for rake. The skipper has a keypad on each tiller extension and on the tiller bar.

 

On 2/3/2018 at 10:00 AM, Mohammed Bin Lyin said:

I don't think easy to sail was a consideration when designing them with the promotors background in 18 ft skiffs

Nobody wanted an easy boat to sail, but these boats are unnecessarily hard to sail for a number of reasons that can all be summed up as poor design and lack of development.

 

57 minutes ago, cosmicsedso said:

The venue left a bit to be desired and I thought the racetrack was too long, but given stronger winds (hopefully today Sunday) maybe that will be less of an issue.

WTF are you talking about. If there was much more wind than what was seen in the last race, the racing will be called off because it will be over the wind limit. 

 

2 hours ago, Gorn FRANTIC!! said:

and then when they put the speeds up for an individual boat I never saw more than 18 knots

Agreed that the graphics didn't match the commentary, but the 18 knots was upwind and they are clearly doing a lot more downwind. 

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Business as usual for Euroflex. Some of the boats come to a complete stop in the manoeuvers. Not sure if these boats will ever foil completely around the course - certainly not in light winds.

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A bit weird that they can sail in amongst the spectator fleet. Not sure the insurers would be that pleased. Chic commentator is getting annoying with her faux enthusiasim.

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On 2/3/2018 at 12:42 AM, smitsone said:

Would they have been better off getting a fleet of foiling cats ,? GC 32, say around 10, easier to sail, could have had more high profile skippers eg Slingsby, Outteridge, Jensen, McNight all racing each other , would be great viewing.

....Except the GC is pure garbage at foiling upwind. This boat is brilliant for the job, they're just strapped for money. Obviously they intend to have more of them racing in the next edition, but at some point, if I'm the mccartneys, my answer is "We bought six. You pay for the next ones." This is nowhere near a catastrophe.

DRC

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Agree with Dave on the GC.  I assume Dave sailed one in Newport, I got a ride in San Diego.

Flying Phantoms on the same course at the same time would be a better metric than the GC.

This series is all about M&M's design skills - I love it!

The sailors will catch up - but they need multihull sailors, not Sydney-Hobart sailors that are scared of being on the wire.

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5 hours ago, Charlie P Mayer said:

but they need multihull fast boat sailors, not Sydney-Hobart sailors that are scared of being on the wire.

Fixed it for you. Even recruiting from iceboating would work. 

Mcknight and Price need to switch positions. The 8th fastest moth sailor in the world should steer and control the foils and the olympic silver medalist in match racing should be dictating tactics. Foiling isn't something you just pick up and become world class in overnight. These assets aren't being utilized right.


DRC

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