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#101 dent

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:22 PM

few questions that comes to mind.

is the ACWS making money?
is it a viable on it's own?

If the ACWS was to continue for the next cup cycle, who's forking over the $$ for it?

Way i see it is if the ACWS is making $$ and is sustainable as it's own entity, PC and RC should spin it off and run it on the current AC45 boats regardless of the next defender wants to do.

If it's not making money and the the defender needs to put money into the WS, dont' think they should. personally, it was pointless and had nothing to do with the AC. maybe trying to drum up some interest but for the most part, it was costing teams needless $$ that could have been spent better.

I wonder if the smaller teams might have been able to get to the LV start line if they didn't have the expenses of the WS...
guess one could make arguments in both directions on trying to get exposure to show that a sponsorship would be good but then again, the extra budget to play in the AC......

#102 GauchoGreg

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:23 PM


Just imagine the excitement and intrigue of backtracking to 20knt monos and horizon sailing with little more hazard than a ripped sail following 50knt multis, spray, and the excitement of being truly on the edge. That's the way to drum up excitement, viewer numbers, advertising money, and more teams. "But it's cheaper . . ."


Still think that 'speed is what sells'? If so there are plenty of 'fast' sports, with more 'excitement', and some even with more spray. AC sailing, even on the AC72's comes out a distant back-marker as a spectator extreme sport. It's a crowded media niche, and not a winning positioning for the AC.

The aspects that sponsors have actually found more uniquely valuable about the AC than 'speed and spray' are the tactical (both the competitor 'chess' and the weather) and the teamwork and the 'high class', and the technology. Now some of that favors multis and some favors monos, and I have no ax to grind on that question. But the focus on 'speed and spray' is misplaced.


No matter how great strategy is, you have to have some degree of excitement, perception of kinetic activity, to make it worthy of viewing. Otherwise, Chess would be the ultimate spectator sport. The combination is important, but if you have boats with little perception of speed, then you are going to get very little viewership other than hard-core sailing people to watch. And even then, many hard core sailing people will just want to sail, and not care to watch others sail. That has been proven to be the case. By the way, I am not entirely anti-monohull. I believe they are fine for things like the Vendee and Volvo. But as for actually attracting public viewers, they fall far FAR behind the AC45s.

#103 PeterHuston

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:33 PM



Just imagine the excitement and intrigue of backtracking to 20knt monos and horizon sailing with little more hazard than a ripped sail following 50knt multis, spray, and the excitement of being truly on the edge. That's the way to drum up excitement, viewer numbers, advertising money, and more teams. "But it's cheaper . . ."


Still think that 'speed is what sells'? If so there are plenty of 'fast' sports, with more 'excitement', and some even with more spray. AC sailing, even on the AC72's comes out a distant back-marker as a spectator extreme sport. It's a crowded media niche, and not a winning positioning for the AC.

The aspects that sponsors have actually found more uniquely valuable about the AC than 'speed and spray' are the tactical (both the competitor 'chess' and the weather) and the teamwork and the 'high class', and the technology. Now some of that favors multis and some favors monos, and I have no ax to grind on that question. But the focus on 'speed and spray' is misplaced.


No matter how great strategy is, you have to have some degree of excitement, perception of kinetic activity, to make it worthy of viewing. Otherwise, Chess would be the ultimate spectator sport. The combination is important, but if you have boats with little perception of speed, then you are going to get very little viewership other than hard-core sailing people to watch. And even then, many hard core sailing people will just want to sail, and not care to watch others sail. That has been proven to be the case. By the way, I am not entirely anti-monohull. I believe they are fine for things like the Vendee and Volvo. But as for actually attracting public viewers, they fall far FAR behind the AC45s.


You have contradicted yourself here. I am not in love with the idea of mono's, or multi's, my point is the boat matters less than people think. People watch people. The Vendee and the Volvo both do work for TV and spectator appeal, they just might not work for you, or others in the US. But for sure Volvo thinks enough of their show to essentially do what Larry did with the ACWS, provide the seed funding to build the fleet and pay for TV production/distribution. Vendee has a massive live and TV audience, just not so much in the US.

I do agree with your comments about the lack of promotion for the ACWS and AC in the US. Other than in the SFO region, walk into most YC's bars and ask people about an AC 45, and if their eyes don't glaze over, then their first question is likely to be "what's it rate?"

#104 GauchoGreg

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:44 PM


Just imagine the excitement and intrigue of backtracking to 20knt monos and horizon sailing with little more hazard than a ripped sail following 50knt multis, spray, and the excitement of being truly on the edge.


Cars were going as fast as Vestas Sailrocket at the dawn of the 20th century. Sailboats just aren't fast. If speed is all sailing has to offer, it's fucked.

Some of us, however, like racing. Not a dumbed-down pale imitation but the real thing.


Speed is not the only thing, but the perception of some kind of speed is important if you want many people to WATCH. When ESPN started showing sailing, people watched for the novelty, and because there really was not that much else to watch. Back when there weren't 20-30 channels of sports programming, men (still the dominant sports viewing group) watched basically any sports they could get. The AC was watched by those who love sailing, as well as those who simply were interested in the new thing, in an environment lacking in other sports options. But, as time has gone by, those passive viewers have gone away, having found sailing to be boring, or at least not as captivating as the other 20 channels of sports options. It does not matter if it has Chess-like strategy, if it is simply too boring to watch, just as Chess is.

Now, the ACWS has done one thing, if nothing else, it has shown that spray and speed do not negate strategy. You see the top teams continue to dominate, you see strategy pay off, just as you see the best skill pay off. Otherwise we would not be seeing the Big Three (Oracle/ETNZ/Artemis), along with Peyron and the couple of top young guys (Outteridge/Draper) dominate as they have. You see China consistently suck, just as you saw Greencomm consistently suck.

Acting like speed, spray, and excitement take away from strategy and skill is flat out wrong. You can have both, and you pretty much must have both, if this sport is to ever gain enough popularity for it to get the kind of coverage all of us should want, so we can actually watch it, and not just talk about it.

#105 GauchoGreg

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:58 PM




Just imagine the excitement and intrigue of backtracking to 20knt monos and horizon sailing with little more hazard than a ripped sail following 50knt multis, spray, and the excitement of being truly on the edge. That's the way to drum up excitement, viewer numbers, advertising money, and more teams. "But it's cheaper . . ."


Still think that 'speed is what sells'? If so there are plenty of 'fast' sports, with more 'excitement', and some even with more spray. AC sailing, even on the AC72's comes out a distant back-marker as a spectator extreme sport. It's a crowded media niche, and not a winning positioning for the AC.

The aspects that sponsors have actually found more uniquely valuable about the AC than 'speed and spray' are the tactical (both the competitor 'chess' and the weather) and the teamwork and the 'high class', and the technology. Now some of that favors multis and some favors monos, and I have no ax to grind on that question. But the focus on 'speed and spray' is misplaced.


No matter how great strategy is, you have to have some degree of excitement, perception of kinetic activity, to make it worthy of viewing. Otherwise, Chess would be the ultimate spectator sport. The combination is important, but if you have boats with little perception of speed, then you are going to get very little viewership other than hard-core sailing people to watch. And even then, many hard core sailing people will just want to sail, and not care to watch others sail. That has been proven to be the case. By the way, I am not entirely anti-monohull. I believe they are fine for things like the Vendee and Volvo. But as for actually attracting public viewers, they fall far FAR behind the AC45s.


You have contradicted yourself here. I am not in love with the idea of mono's, or multi's, my point is the boat matters less than people think. People watch people. The Vendee and the Volvo both do work for TV and spectator appeal, they just might not work for you, or others in the US. But for sure Volvo thinks enough of their show to essentially do what Larry did with the ACWS, provide the seed funding to build the fleet and pay for TV production/distribution. Vendee has a massive live and TV audience, just not so much in the US.

I do agree with your comments about the lack of promotion for the ACWS and AC in the US. Other than in the SFO region, walk into most YC's bars and ask people about an AC 45, and if their eyes don't glaze over, then their first question is likely to be "what's it rate?"


Actually, the vendee and volvo are interesting to follow for the story lines. Out of months of racing, you get about a couple hours of actual interesting viewing. Most of the viewing is about the drama, the adventure, not the racing. And we are largely forgiving even if they don't show that small amount of what would be compelling to watch. This past Volvo is a great example of that. They COULD have actually had SOME compelling viewing, but they pretty much passed on trying to show us. And yet, we forgive them. They are entirely different kinds of events compared to the AC. I don't see how they can ever translate the AC to the adventure type production. The AC is more about trying to find a way to develop compelling racing to support the years of development, which a relatively small populace (us) actually follow.

Getting back to the point of horrible promotion. I've discussed this before, but will again here. My brothers are both multi-hull guys. We grew up in Santa Cruz, we had a Nacra. We loved multis, but we also loved fast off-shore boats like Merlin. We always laughed at the AC for how crappy the boats were, how boring it was. When ESPN first started showing the AC, we still watched it, because it was sailing on TV. But we got bored with it over the years following Perth/Freemantle. We always said they needed to at least have what could be considered the fastest monos around racing, if not the fastest multis, if the sport were to ever have a chance to get a good following of those who appreciate sailing, let alone the general populace. So, fast forward to the past two years. You would think the change over to the current boats, and the current coverage, would get people like my brothers to watch. But what has happened is that they never know about the ACWS events going on. Had they known about them, had the promotion been at all consistent and compelling, I'm sure they (and God know s how many more) would have been tuning in. But given how busy people's lives are these days, and given the number of alternatives to watch, you can't just have something "on" and expect it to be a success. The Tour de France is, I believe, the real model the AC people should be trying to emulate. For what the events look like, and for how it is promoted.

#106 ice9a

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 08:06 PM

Speed is not the only thing, but the perception of some kind of speed is important if you want many people to WATCH.


You are too close to this.

The DOG match looked f&^king slow to a non-sailor (with the exception of about 10 second of the race 1 pre-start when JS took it right at EB).

The AC45's mostly look f&^king slow to a non-sailor.

Mostly neither look 'extreme', with a few rare moments.

You know what it feels like to be on the boat, so you sense the speed and excitement. The non-sailor does not.

The numbers were pitiful. In part we all agree that's because they did not just suck at promotion they simply did none at all. However, more telling for the event was that there was no building of viewers over time at all, which says there was no significant positive word of mouth.

#107 dogwatch

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 05:42 AM

Now, the ACWS has done one thing, if nothing else, it has shown that spray and speed do not negate strategy. You see the top teams continue to dominate, you see strategy pay off, just as you see the best skill pay off. Otherwise we would not be seeing the Big Three (Oracle/ETNZ/Artemis), along with Peyron and the couple of top young guys (Outteridge/Draper) dominate as they have. You see China consistently suck, just as you saw Greencomm consistently suck.


I watched a lot of ACWS in the first few events and strategy paying off is precisely what I did not see. What I saw was primarily a fairly uninteresting boat-handling contest. China sucks because they have never had a consistent team that spent the requisite time together to sort out their boat-handling.

You can have both, and you pretty much must have both, if this sport is to ever gain enough popularity for it to get the kind of coverage all of us should want, so we can actually watch it, and not just talk about it.


I'm far more interested in participating than spectating. I'm fairly interested in talking/writing about it. Watching comes a distant third.

#108 dogwatch

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 05:48 AM

The AC45's mostly look f&^king slow to a non-sailor.


They don't just look slow, they are slow in comparison with the life experience of practically everybody.

I have a vivid memory of watching the ACWS course laid out in front of me from the vantage point of Plymouth Hoe. Breeze was 20-25 knots. As "stadium sailing" this was as good as it gets. The AC45s were moving at the speed of suburban traffic and from half a mile away, that's exactly what it looked like.

#109 dogwatch

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 05:55 AM

People watch people.


Exactly right, and that's the appeal of Gaucho's Tour de France. It's about the cyclists, not the bloody bikes.

Grant Dalton is at least injecting some controversy and human interest into AC34, unlike the controlled corporate dreariness that is OR. You ought to be applauding that rather than moaning.

#110 dogwatch

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 06:05 AM

Otherwise, Chess would be the ultimate spectator sport.


You realise that many people do in fact watch Chess? Even when it was not an extension of the Cold War.

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#111 maxmini

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 06:58 AM

Have we ever seen the numbers for the second ACWS in SF ? There was a downward trend ratings wise going into that one . DId it continue, maintain or grow ?

#112 GauchoGreg

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 01:49 PM


Otherwise, Chess would be the ultimate spectator sport.


You realise that many people do in fact watch Chess? Even when it was not an extension of the Cold War.

Posted Image


"many"?

Maybe "many" people watched in the days when there were three channels on TV, and nothing remotely of interest. A producer decided it was something they wanted to air, and so, it was aired, and because it was aired and there was little alternative, people watched. But there is a damned good reason no chess is not a TV sport. And I love chess.

#113 GauchoGreg

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 02:01 PM


Now, the ACWS has done one thing, if nothing else, it has shown that spray and speed do not negate strategy. You see the top teams continue to dominate, you see strategy pay off, just as you see the best skill pay off. Otherwise we would not be seeing the Big Three (Oracle/ETNZ/Artemis), along with Peyron and the couple of top young guys (Outteridge/Draper) dominate as they have. You see China consistently suck, just as you saw Greencomm consistently suck.


I watched a lot of ACWS in the first few events and strategy paying off is precisely what I did not see. What I saw was primarily a fairly uninteresting boat-handling contest. China sucks because they have never had a consistent team that spent the requisite time together to sort out their boat-handling.

You can have both, and you pretty much must have both, if this sport is to ever gain enough popularity for it to get the kind of coverage all of us should want, so we can actually watch it, and not just talk about it.


I'm far more interested in participating than spectating. I'm fairly interested in talking/writing about it. Watching comes a distant third.


And yet, I have consistently heard it said, and I share the opinion, that the ACWS has been the best sailing viewing ever. Sure, Freemantle was great, but it was more to do with the setting and the story, but that was the exception, not the norm. The DOG matches were fun, but that model has not proved to be capable of giving us much to see.

These current boats are visibly fast on TV, it is exciting, it is on the edge, and the coverage is beautiful . . . but the strategy and boathandling skill are also on par with any ACs we have seen, if you are being honest. I don't have to see capsizes to be excited and feel like the racing is on the edge. Bear aways in strong wind are kind of like close action in car racing, where every race you see something along the lines of "that guy almost lost it there", which does make the racing more exciting to watch. And that does not take away from the strategy, the skill. We have seen strategy be very prevalent in pre-starts, in picking sides of the course, etc. We have seen good boathandling pay off, and bad boathandling punished. In general, action has been closer than we typically see in AC racing.

You may like talking about sailing and the AC, but for sailing to ever be commercially viable, it has to be watchable, and watched. That is the only way it will ever be more than the play thing of a couple of billionaires. The more watchable and watched it is, the more money will go into it, the more teams will play, and the deeper and more varied the innovation and development will be. There will be more to talk about if the sport is more watchable and watched. I think most of us will actually say that the talking is a hell of a lot more fun if we actually get to see what we talk about from time to time, and see it with great coverage and see something that is interesting to watch.

#114 kiwi_jon

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 02:27 PM



Now, the ACWS has done one thing, if nothing else, it has shown that spray and speed do not negate strategy. You see the top teams continue to dominate, you see strategy pay off, just as you see the best skill pay off. Otherwise we would not be seeing the Big Three (Oracle/ETNZ/Artemis), along with Peyron and the couple of top young guys (Outteridge/Draper) dominate as they have. You see China consistently suck, just as you saw Greencomm consistently suck.


I watched a lot of ACWS in the first few events and strategy paying off is precisely what I did not see. What I saw was primarily a fairly uninteresting boat-handling contest. China sucks because they have never had a consistent team that spent the requisite time together to sort out their boat-handling.

You can have both, and you pretty much must have both, if this sport is to ever gain enough popularity for it to get the kind of coverage all of us should want, so we can actually watch it, and not just talk about it.


I'm far more interested in participating than spectating. I'm fairly interested in talking/writing about it. Watching comes a distant third.


And yet, I have consistently heard it said, and I share the opinion, that the ACWS has been the best sailing viewing ever. Sure, Freemantle was great, but it was more to do with the setting and the story, but that was the exception, not the norm. The DOG matches were fun, but that model has not proved to be capable of giving us much to see.

These current boats are visibly fast on TV, it is exciting, it is on the edge, and the coverage is beautiful . . . but the strategy and boathandling skill are also on par with any ACs we have seen, if you are being honest. I don't have to see capsizes to be excited and feel like the racing is on the edge. Bear aways in strong wind are kind of like close action in car racing, where every race you see something along the lines of "that guy almost lost it there", which does make the racing more exciting to watch. And that does not take away from the strategy, the skill. We have seen strategy be very prevalent in pre-starts, in picking sides of the course, etc. We have seen good boathandling pay off, and bad boathandling punished. In general, action has been closer than we typically see in AC racing.

You may like talking about sailing and the AC, but for sailing to ever be commercially viable, it has to be watchable, and watched. That is the only way it will ever be more than the play thing of a couple of billionaires. The more watchable and watched it is, the more money will go into it, the more teams will play, and the deeper and more varied the innovation and development will be. There will be more to talk about if the sport is more watchable and watched. I think most of us will actually say that the talking is a hell of a lot more fun if we actually get to see what we talk about from time to time, and see it with great coverage and see something that is interesting to watch.



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#115 PeterHuston

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 02:35 PM


People watch people.


Exactly right, and that's the appeal of Gaucho's Tour de France. It's about the cyclists, not the bloody bikes.

Grant Dalton is at least injecting some controversy and human interest into AC34, unlike the controlled corporate dreariness that is OR. You ought to be applauding that rather than moaning.


Actually, I'm not moaning about Dalton so much as I am about the Kiwi Religious Right. And I stuck that name on them specifically to stir up the crowd a bit.

Grant ought to violate the gag rule a bit more and see what happens. A sporting competition can take away the right to free speech? That would be an interesting constitutional law case. I'm sure there is some liberal lawyer in SFO who would love to take on that case. Of course, seeing as ACEA/ACRM is run by non-Americans and it would be a non-American complaining about the lack of free speech in America, the case might not get all that much attention by the Court.

#116 dogwatch

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 02:37 PM

And yet, I have consistently heard it said, and I share the opinion, that the ACWS has been the best sailing viewing ever.


You won't hear that from me. Women's Olympic match-racing is the best sailing I've seen, on TV and in "the stadium".

I don't really care whether sailing is "commercially viable". The AC did just fine when a few mere $Ms hooked up to build a boat, campaigns lasted the length of a summer and sailors weren't afraid to open their mouths to express an opinion in case they said the wrong thing.

#117 PeterHuston

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 02:39 PM


And yet, I have consistently heard it said, and I share the opinion, that the ACWS has been the best sailing viewing ever.


You won't hear that from me. Women's Olympic match-racing is the best sailing I've seen, on TV and in "the stadium".

I don't really care whether sailing is "commercially viable". The AC did just fine when a few mere $Ms hooked up to build a boat, campaigns lasted the length of a summer and sailors weren't afraid to open their mouths to express an opinion in case they said the wrong thing.


And during that time, at least in the US, the AC was on the cover of Sports Illustrated, and Time Magazine. Now we get Likes and Tweets. Yawn.

#118 ice9a

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 02:49 PM


And yet, I have consistently heard it said, and I share the opinion, that the ACWS has been the best sailing viewing ever.


You won't hear that from me. Women's Olympic match-racing is the best sailing I've seen, on TV and in "the stadium".


No, the ACWS was initially 'watchable' because it was new and different. Once a casual sailor or non-sailor (and even a lot of hard core sailors) had seen about 60 minutes of it, it was no longer new and different and instead just slow and boring with no excitement and no personalities and no nationalism, no 'high class' aspect, little strategy that the announcers could articulate (not sure if that's a problem with the announcers or the format), and not much ability to articulate the teamwork aspect either. And the viewer numbers support this - a small hard core who will watch anything sailing, a slightly bigger group interested to see it the first time, but no audience building from positive word of mouth.

#119 Hastings

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 05:03 PM

Actually, I'm not moaning about Dalton so much as I am about the Kiwi Religious Right. And I stuck that name on them specifically to stir up the crowd a bit.


Quite so!

But Jimmy Swaggart, Jerry Fallwell and those other tele-evangelist and other "Christian" nutcases are all yanks.

There is a bit of right wing in New Zealand. But it ain't religious!

Unless you consider Milton Friedman the Archbishop!

#120 Hastings

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 05:07 PM

[
Grant ought to violate the gag rule a bit more and see what happens. A sporting competition can take away the right to free speech? That would be an interesting constitutional law case. I'm sure there is some liberal lawyer in SFO who would love to take on that case.


Peter ... given a choice between getting a flat white on Halsey Street and launching a "constitutional" law case in SF, it is clear which option Dalts would take!

New Zealand is not about to interfere with internal US problems.

#121 ~HHN92~

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 06:18 PM



And yet, I have consistently heard it said, and I share the opinion, that the ACWS has been the best sailing viewing ever.


You won't hear that from me. Women's Olympic match-racing is the best sailing I've seen, on TV and in "the stadium".

I don't really care whether sailing is "commercially viable". The AC did just fine when a few mere $Ms hooked up to build a boat, campaigns lasted the length of a summer and sailors weren't afraid to open their mouths to express an opinion in case they said the wrong thing.


And during that time, at least in the US, the AC was on the cover of Sports Illustrated, and Time Magazine. Now we get Likes and Tweets. Yawn.


I have a couple of old Life magazines that had articles on the '62 & '64 matches, I am sure there are others.

And our paper had coverage on what was happening on a regular basis, with daily coverage once the LV series started, with box scores and everything.

#122 maxmini

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 06:24 PM



And yet, I have consistently heard it said, and I share the opinion, that the ACWS has been the best sailing viewing ever.


You won't hear that from me. Women's Olympic match-racing is the best sailing I've seen, on TV and in "the stadium".


No, the ACWS was initially 'watchable' because it was new and different. Once a casual sailor or non-sailor (and even a lot of hard core sailors) had seen about 60 minutes of it, it was no longer new and different and instead just slow and boring with no excitement and no personalities and no nationalism, no 'high class' aspect, little strategy that the announcers could articulate (not sure if that's a problem with the announcers or the format), and not much ability to articulate the teamwork aspect either. And the viewer numbers support this - a small hard core who will watch anything sailing, a slightly bigger group interested to see it the first time, but no audience building from positive word of mouth.


According to the ratings both the word of mouth nor the formatt is working as the numbers have been declining much less holding their own or growing .It's doubly frustrating as the tech side is really spectacular but it is not enough to build or even hold an audience . It has been an amazing effort by Uncle Larry and crew but all this has really proved is that the only sizable number of people that will watch sailing are sailors . The dumbing down of the AC to turn it into reality TV did not work . Here's hoping that AC 35 will begin to turn things around.

#123 maxmini

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 06:26 PM




And yet, I have consistently heard it said, and I share the opinion, that the ACWS has been the best sailing viewing ever.


You won't hear that from me. Women's Olympic match-racing is the best sailing I've seen, on TV and in "the stadium".

I don't really care whether sailing is "commercially viable". The AC did just fine when a few mere $Ms hooked up to build a boat, campaigns lasted the length of a summer and sailors weren't afraid to open their mouths to express an opinion in case they said the wrong thing.


And during that time, at least in the US, the AC was on the cover of Sports Illustrated, and Time Magazine. Now we get Likes and Tweets. Yawn.


I have a couple of old Life magazines that had articles on the '62 & '64 matches, I am sure there are others.

And our paper had coverage on what was happening on a regular basis, with daily coverage once the LV series started, with box scores and everything.


I have a copy of a sept 14 issue of sports illustrated with my fav boat Intrepid on the cover . Sept 14 is also my birthday which I always thought was a pretty cool coincidence .

#124 Terry Hollis

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 10:11 PM




And yet, I have consistently heard it said, and I share the opinion, that the ACWS has been the best sailing viewing ever.


You won't hear that from me. Women's Olympic match-racing is the best sailing I've seen, on TV and in "the stadium".


No, the ACWS was initially 'watchable' because it was new and different. Once a casual sailor or non-sailor (and even a lot of hard core sailors) had seen about 60 minutes of it, it was no longer new and different and instead just slow and boring with no excitement and no personalities and no nationalism, no 'high class' aspect, little strategy that the announcers could articulate (not sure if that's a problem with the announcers or the format), and not much ability to articulate the teamwork aspect either. And the viewer numbers support this - a small hard core who will watch anything sailing, a slightly bigger group interested to see it the first time, but no audience building from positive word of mouth.


According to the ratings both the word of mouth nor the formatt is working as the numbers have been declining much less holding their own or growing .It's doubly frustrating as the tech side is really spectacular but it is not enough to build or even hold an audience . It has been an amazing effort by Uncle Larry and crew but all this has really proved is that the only sizable number of people that will watch sailing are sailors . The dumbing down of the AC to turn it into reality TV did not work . Here's hoping that AC 35 will begin to turn things around.

I think that two things have spoiled the TV experience .. fleet racing and short legs ..

With only two boats to watch as in match racing there is much less going on and the viewer can easily understand who is winning .. with long legs the suspense can build allowing the viewer to anticipate a passing move , penalty or a wind shift that will change the game ..

The higher speeds of the AC72's means that they need even longer legs so that the commentators will have time to analyse the leg with "Virtual Eye" like they did with the monos ..

It doesn't seem possible to satisfy the needs of both the stadium audience and the TV audience with a sailing contest .. It would be better to arrange venues all over the world with huge screens and a few thousand people in each one to simulate the "stadium" experience .

#125 ~HHN92~

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 10:20 PM





And yet, I have consistently heard it said, and I share the opinion, that the ACWS has been the best sailing viewing ever.


You won't hear that from me. Women's Olympic match-racing is the best sailing I've seen, on TV and in "the stadium".

I don't really care whether sailing is "commercially viable". The AC did just fine when a few mere $Ms hooked up to build a boat, campaigns lasted the length of a summer and sailors weren't afraid to open their mouths to express an opinion in case they said the wrong thing.


And during that time, at least in the US, the AC was on the cover of Sports Illustrated, and Time Magazine. Now we get Likes and Tweets. Yawn.


I have a couple of old Life magazines that had articles on the '62 & '64 matches, I am sure there are others.

And our paper had coverage on what was happening on a regular basis, with daily coverage once the LV series started, with box scores and everything.


I have a copy of a sept 14 issue of sports illustrated with my fav boat Intrepid on the cover . Sept 14 is also my birthday which I always thought was a pretty cool coincidence .


On how many large boats do you see the helm bracing himself to leeward with his foot on the boom?

#126 SimonN

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:21 PM

The real problem with all of this is experienced marketting guys smelling large dollars for themselves and naive visionaries who are desperate to make their vision work.....

RC and PC might be great sailors and they have a very clear view of what professional sailing needs. Nobody can deny that professional sailing needs a global circuit that can support the pros and make money for the teams. It doesn't exist and it is the holy grail. The weakness in all of this is that they do not have the marketting experience and knowledge to make it happen. We saw this with their World Series idea. Now that RC has the money and a patron to look at this again, he has gone to the marketting guys for help. Do you really think that those marketting types are going to tell RC a simple truth - it won't work? They know that all RC will do is keep going until he finds a marketting team that will run with it, so they might as well be the ones that do it. they pull together the most credible plan possible, but come on, have you read the rubbish they came up with? Only peopel who are so blinded by their own vision, or those with no skin in the game but need the money from a professional series can be taken in by that stuff. I suspect that LE knows this but he accepts that this is the price of having RC on his side.

Let me give an example of the rubbish being dished out

He ran through a series of slides that showed the rights fees and sponsorship revenue generated by sports ranging from golf to tennis to mixed martial arts. He said that sailing had fallen behind sports that it once had been more popular than.

Note the careful use of "popular". In this case, he can only be talking participation, because sailing has never been a more popular spectator sport than golf or tennis. And to suggest that the rights fees and sponsorship revenue of sports like tennis and golf is at all relevent to sailing is, IMO, totally misleading and is simply playing to the audience it is written for.

#127 Chris 249

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:33 PM

The Tour de France is, I believe, the real model the AC people should be trying to emulate. For what the events look like, and for how it is promoted.


If that is true - and you may well be right - then how do we make the AC more like the Tour?

1- restrict the speed, design and development of the gear dramatically. Tour bikes are (depending on the course) about 60% as fast as the fastest bicycles. That means that the average viewer can relate to what the legends are doing.

2- change the course to slow the contestants down dramatically and bring them right into the spectators. The Tour's mountaintop finishes, where the riders are going so slowly that spectators can run alongside, create the highest live spectator interest and (IIRC) the highest ratings.

3- as in 2, bring the course right into the heart of many different parts of the country, including byways and villages, on a course determined by geography.

4- realise that about 1/3 of the crowd are not there to watch the race, but the sponsor's caravan.

5- ignore the claims that fans need a clear leader and winner. The overall winner of the Tour often wins only one or two stages, spends 99+% of their time following others, and will regularly finish in the 20s or 30s in a stage.

6- make the pros use essentially the same gear as the legends of decades ago, club racers and weekend warriors, and race in the same sort of way.

7- race this restricted equipment over iconic courses so that fans can compare current pros to earlier legends, emulate their heroes, gain an understanding of the challenge, and become passionate missionaries for the event.

8 - ensure that some parts of the event (ie some courses, some events) will suit other competitors and others races/stages/days will suit other competitors, to allow specialists and all-rounders to have their days of glory.

Funnily enough, racing WW/LW in wing masted cats seems to be about as far from following the lessons of the Tour, the world's #1 annual sporting event, as it can be.

#128 brian weslake

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 12:20 AM


The Tour de France is, I believe, the real model the AC people should be trying to emulate. For what the events look like, and for how it is promoted.


If that is true - and you may well be right - then how do we make the AC more like the Tour?

1- restrict the speed, design and development of the gear dramatically. Tour bikes are (depending on the course) about 60% as fast as the fastest bicycles. That means that the average viewer can relate to what the legends are doing.

2- change the course to slow the contestants down dramatically and bring them right into the spectators. The Tour's mountaintop finishes, where the riders are going so slowly that spectators can run alongside, create the highest live spectator interest and (IIRC) the highest ratings.

3- as in 2, bring the course right into the heart of many different parts of the country, including byways and villages, on a course determined by geography.

4- realise that about 1/3 of the crowd are not there to watch the race, but the sponsor's caravan.

5- ignore the claims that fans need a clear leader and winner. The overall winner of the Tour often wins only one or two stages, spends 99+% of their time following others, and will regularly finish in the 20s or 30s in a stage.

6- make the pros use essentially the same gear as the legends of decades ago, club racers and weekend warriors, and race in the same sort of way.

7- race this restricted equipment over iconic courses so that fans can compare current pros to earlier legends, emulate their heroes, gain an understanding of the challenge, and become passionate missionaries for the event.

8 - ensure that some parts of the event (ie some courses, some events) will suit other competitors and others races/stages/days will suit other competitors, to allow specialists and all-rounders to have their days of glory.

Funnily enough, racing WW/LW in wing masted cats seems to be about as far from following the lessons of the Tour, the world's #1 annual sporting event, as it can be.


Based on your analysis the next AC should comprise 150 lasers circumnavigating north and south islands of New Zealand in a series of one day stages. Should be a lot cheaper anyway.

#129 Estar

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 01:11 AM

Based on your analysis the next AC should comprise 150 lasers circumnavigating north and south islands of New Zealand in a series of one day stages. Should be a lot cheaper anyway.


Actually, there use to be a great race like that . . . the Worrell 1000 ....1000 miles in beach cats, in any out of the surf up the US east coast. It was much more of an 'extreme sport' than the ACWS is - as indicated much more like the TdF on the water. I think the last race was in 2002 - seem to remember that the founder got old and they had some sort of problem with the boat supplier.

#130 Hastings

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 01:31 AM

Do you really think that those marketting types are going to tell RC a simple truth - it won't work? .... I suspect that LE knows this but he accepts that this is the price of having RC on his side.


Simon, that is a good post.

But I have a feeling the silly extreme sports Flinststones/Facebook thing was cooked-up by Larry.

He said his kid had watched the 2010 Winter Olympics and was impressed with the snowboard-cross (or something like that).

Saling had to be like that. Exciting, edgy, in a stadium, made for TV.

OR staff turned it into a "vision" (oh how I hate that over-used word!).

And gave it to Russell to read at the Valencia launch ceremony (where the AC45 & 72 plan was revealed).

Remember how wooden and awkward RC looked. It was awful! Painful. Almost embarassing.

But, for a while, they persisted with it.

We no longer hear reference to the Flintstones. And, as it turns out, the Facebook generation are too busy looking at themselves to show up for a sailboat race.

Anyway, I think Larry had a big oar in the water. It was not just an RC/PC concoction.

#131 PeterHuston

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 01:56 AM


Do you really think that those marketting types are going to tell RC a simple truth - it won't work? .... I suspect that LE knows this but he accepts that this is the price of having RC on his side.


Simon, that is a good post.

But I have a feeling the silly extreme sports Flinststones/Facebook thing was cooked-up by Larry.

He said his kid had watched the 2010 Winter Olympics and was impressed with the snowboard-cross (or something like that).

Saling had to be like that. Exciting, edgy, in a stadium, made for TV.

OR staff turned it into a "vision" (oh how I hate that over-used word!).

And gave it to Russell to read at the Valencia launch ceremony (where the AC45 & 72 plan was revealed).

Remember how wooden and awkward RC looked. It was awful! Painful. Almost embarassing.

But, for a while, they persisted with it.

We no longer hear reference to the Flintstones. And, as it turns out, the Facebook generation are too busy looking at themselves to show up for a sailboat race.

Anyway, I think Larry had a big oar in the water. It was not just an RC/PC concoction.


I rather doubt Larry was all that much involved in any of the specifics once the decision had been made to change the game to a faster speed, and coupled with the desire to keep the game close, which brought in boundary lines (which can't be seen when you are in the actual stadium) and the idea of electronic judging (like electronic line calls in tennis, another sport where Larry has a big vested interest) comes into play, and you end up with Stan's cool technology. I'd guess Larry had a big interest in that, because he's a tech guy.

But there is NO WAY Larry came up with Facebook/Flintstone - that was in all probability Craig Thompson, because I know that he came up with the Fastest Boats Best Sailors line, because when I asked him he told me that was his line. Larry is good with a quip, but the FB/Stoner thing was probably Thompson sticking words in Russell's mouth.

Besides, another reason you don't head all that much about FB any more, is that FB is so 2010. At least according to Mark Cuban, who does not get tech trends wrong very often.

http://www.huffingto..._b_2158116.html

#132 Hastings

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 02:02 AM

But there is NO WAY Larry came up with Facebook/Flintstone - that was in all probability Craig Thompson,


How about Tim Jeffrey? (not Thompson)

You can easily check this.

Just ask!

#133 PeterHuston

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 02:09 AM


But there is NO WAY Larry came up with Facebook/Flintstone - that was in all probability Craig Thompson,


How about Tim Jeffrey? (not Thompson)

You can easily check this.

Just ask!


Could have been Tim Jeffery i suppose. But at this point it isn't worth discussing further, because everyone realizes it was a stupid thing to say, especially because the Facebook generation is a lot older than people think. When another guru by the name of Jason Calacanis says that no one under 25 who is remotely cool uses FB, I tend to take notice of that. As it is, I unliked every AC FB link I had last week because it was just too much drivel, too much of the same stuff getting reposted, any of which that is of any value ends up here at just about the same time anyway - fact is, a lot of info ends up first, like 17 crashing.

#134 SimonN

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:07 AM

When another guru by the name of Jason Calacanis says that no one under 25 who is remotely cool uses FB, I tend to take notice of that.

Well, maybe instead of listening to 42 year old you should be asking 25 year olds what they are doing. As somebody who has spent the last 4 years closely linked into the 18-25 year old age bracket, including some of the coolest kids, I can absolutely assure you that fb is what they all use, all the time. All the coolest stuff is pushed through fb - parties, gigs, nights out etc. fb messenger is now being used almost as much as text - you use text on the go and messenger when at a desk.


The other thing that distorts the fb picture is an increasing trend to having 2 accounts, even amongst "normal" people. One will be in their real name and they have everybody on there, particularly people like family, work etc. They post a couple fo times a week significant stuff they want everybody to know. Then they have a second account in an alias name where only real friends ate accepted, so they can keep their everyday stuff out private. personal data is usually not correct, except for the day and month of their birthday, because you don't want people to find you They simply don't want their family, boss and everybody else knowing what they are up to, how drunk/stoned they got the night before or how much they hate their boss/job and much, much more. This has trickled up to older people with it becoming a pretty common thing with people in the public eye, such as dj's, musicians, actors and sports people. things like this totally distort all the data on fb.

#135 PeterHuston

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:22 AM


When another guru by the name of Jason Calacanis says that no one under 25 who is remotely cool uses FB, I tend to take notice of that.

Well, maybe instead of listening to 42 year old you should be asking 25 year olds what they are doing. As somebody who has spent the last 4 years closely linked into the 18-25 year old age bracket, including some of the coolest kids, I can absolutely assure you that fb is what they all use, all the time. All the coolest stuff is pushed through fb - parties, gigs, nights out etc. fb messenger is now being used almost as much as text - you use text on the go and messenger when at a desk.

The other thing that distorts the fb picture is an increasing trend to having 2 accounts, even amongst "normal" people. One will be in their real name and they have everybody on there, particularly people like family, work etc. They post a couple fo times a week significant stuff they want everybody to know. Then they have a second account in an alias name where only real friends ate accepted, so they can keep their everyday stuff out private. personal data is usually not correct, except for the day and month of their birthday, because you don't want people to find you They simply don't want their family, boss and everybody else knowing what they are up to, how drunk/stoned they got the night before or how much they hate their boss/job and much, much more. This has trickled up to older people with it becoming a pretty common thing with people in the public eye, such as dj's, musicians, actors and sports people. things like this totally distort all the data on fb.


I think we might have a cultural issue here, because I spend a good deal of time around younger people too, in the States, and i know many who are moving away from FB, or at least not using it as exclusively or extensively as they once did. No doubt it is still a massive distribution system, but, one has to be careful about touting the commercial value of it - as you say, there are people with an alias who only want their real life friends/family on it, and so that would presume they don't pay all that much attention to their account with a larger head count.

I also know that ACEA is aware of the trends in social media and are seeing an increase in traffic on their tumbler page and twitter feed and are spending more attention there. Worth and Thompson were fools and tools, but at least some of the people there now are doing a better job.

#136 ~Stingray~

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:35 AM

TeKooti, your fixation on the Flintstones/FaceBook line is by now far past old and passť, much like all the voluminous rest of your own myriad chip-on-the-shoulder stereotyping issues are.

The fact any of us read, let alone post, here makes us by any reasonable definition on-line engaged, whether we choose to maintain FB pages or not.

You need to get over the fact that you are, in the general sense, exactly what that line was intended to include instead of exclude.

Yes, my guess is that Tim Jeffries is who wrote that somewhat awkward line; and is also who wrote the 'cum' line. But Tim is not nearly as old-school-languaged and far from as painful as what (it having had to be thought) Stuart effing Alexander is. Tortured lines are just that, nothing more, it's a f*cking sailing thing not any futile and completely effing naive gas-bagging attempt to change the course of Chinese history.

#137 kiwi_jon

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:17 AM

Says a meeting was held this October in SF with ACWS teams, ACalphabet, TV executives to try and firm up a WS program/league on "exciting and affordable" AC45s for the (traditionally lean) three years after the Cup. Small teams were in favor, but the agreement was torpedoed by the perfidious Kiwis, seconded by their "trusty sidekick" LR (that was not very elegant, Paolino must be seriously pissed off).
A sticking point I can see is OR would graciously confer LiveLine equipment - but who would pay for staff and running costs?

Also, ETNZ are supposed to have announced publicly that, should they win, the Cup will revert to monos ??


I wonder if Cayard will be sanctioned by the Jury under Protocol Rule 60 'Protecting the reputation of the America's Cup' for slagging off at other Competitors and outright lying about a competitor.

#138 GauchoGreg

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:01 PM


The Tour de France is, I believe, the real model the AC people should be trying to emulate. For what the events look like, and for how it is promoted.


If that is true - and you may well be right - then how do we make the AC more like the Tour?

1- restrict the speed, design and development of the gear dramatically. Tour bikes are (depending on the course) about 60% as fast as the fastest bicycles. That means that the average viewer can relate to what the legends are doing.

2- change the course to slow the contestants down dramatically and bring them right into the spectators. The Tour's mountaintop finishes, where the riders are going so slowly that spectators can run alongside, create the highest live spectator interest and (IIRC) the highest ratings.

3- as in 2, bring the course right into the heart of many different parts of the country, including byways and villages, on a course determined by geography.

4- realise that about 1/3 of the crowd are not there to watch the race, but the sponsor's caravan.

5- ignore the claims that fans need a clear leader and winner. The overall winner of the Tour often wins only one or two stages, spends 99+% of their time following others, and will regularly finish in the 20s or 30s in a stage.

6- make the pros use essentially the same gear as the legends of decades ago, club racers and weekend warriors, and race in the same sort of way.

7- race this restricted equipment over iconic courses so that fans can compare current pros to earlier legends, emulate their heroes, gain an understanding of the challenge, and become passionate missionaries for the event.

8 - ensure that some parts of the event (ie some courses, some events) will suit other competitors and others races/stages/days will suit other competitors, to allow specialists and all-rounders to have their days of glory.

Funnily enough, racing WW/LW in wing masted cats seems to be about as far from following the lessons of the Tour, the world's #1 annual sporting event, as it can be.


I believe you are missing some big points.

First of all, the TdF became something, first (of course, speaking about in America) when LeMonde won, then it was catapulted when Armstrong won. This is where those who speak of nationality rules are on to something. People want to identify with competitors, they want to root on "one of their own". Unfotunately, LE's drive to simply have the best has ended up shooting himself in the foot a bit. Swap the crews with Artemis, and he could actually have an "American" team to promote. Not saying that would make all the difference, but it would help. I believe Americans appreciate immigrants, they have shown they will support those who love America and move here, not just those who are born here, but still, you improve the marketability by making it Us against them. You can bet your ass cycling viewing in the US is waning since the passing of Armstrong, and the black eyes created by his and Landis' violations. At the same time, I would bet that interest increased in Australia and GB after the past two TdFs. I don't know how much can really be done to drum up more nationality intrigue . . . that may simply be a limitation in this case for yachting.

Secondly, the TdF's growth in American viewership was aided by timing, coming on during a time of year with limited sports. It occurs during July, after Wimbledon, before the US Open, when the only real sports competition is baseball. It got a boost by NBC airing the racing when there was little else for them to air. Then the cable channels picked up the cheap coverage and showed it multiple times per day, but it was promoted on NBC pretty heavily. Further, they did a great job with on-line coverage. But the lesser cable channel coverage in conjunction with pretty heavy promotion did the job. As with the ACWS, the TdF had incredible coverage, great aerial footage, beautiful scenery, story lines for the setting, not just the racing. This brought interest from non-sailing people, like my wife, who just loves watching the French countryside (while shy may not want to have a baseball or football game on in the background on a saturday/sunday family day, she likes having the TdF on for the backdrop). I would say the AC has the same potential for that, with beautiful settings, particularly now with the close in sailing. But the set timing, the time of year, the setting, the promotion, and the coverage all have a big part of the success of the TdF. The AC only have two of those components right (the setting and the coverage). They have done a horrendous job of setting up the timing (actually setting a schedule, and scheduling when there is limited viewing competition), and even worse with promotion.

As for your bizarre claims that speed is a detriment . . . . First of all, mountain top finishes are not popular because they are slow, they are popular because those are the only stages where you can be confident that the top riders will be competing for the stage win, and it will not just be a peleton race with 2 seconds of sprint. It's not like people tune out on the fast descent if you have a mountain stage with a short descent at the end, where the winner is still likely to be a top contender. But still, the mountain top finish has the drama of pain and effort, the probability of a top contender winning, as well as symbolism going for it. It would not be diminished if the riders could be going another 10mph faster up that final climb.

And more, on the gear. The bikes used in the TdF are hardly poor on the tech front of cycling. Yes, the organizers control the shape of the bike, but not in order to control the speed, but rather to keep the race about the riders. Within that box rule, the bikes can be tweaked to get as much speed as possible. They are as light and as stiff as can be made. They have to tackle a variety of terrain. The TT bikes have as much aero work built in to them as possible. It is not like they are giving the riders limitations on chain rings, or on tire tread, or on pedal clips, etc, to keep them slow. Hell, if slow was the goal, they could make each rider pull a parachute behind them or make them ride with 3" wide tires, tiny chain rings, etc.

#139 GauchoGreg

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:37 PM

The criticism of fleet racing as part of the problem, the more I think of it, has some real merit. Sure, there is more action, but it is also more "noise". Going back to the analogy of biking. The mountain stages set up the case where you have less riders to watch. You can actually focus on the true competitors and follow where they are in relation to each other. Similar, the individual time trials are the next most often watched of the TdF stages, and similarly, you can focus on the individuals, you (at least knowledgeable fans) understand where the top contenders are with relation to each other. By the way, the riders are hauling ass on the TTs, so it is not about going slow that is important). But with a flat stage, the contenders are lost in the pack, just as with a fleet race, you often lose perspective of where the competitors are. Best case scenario, usually, is to have a couple of boats get out ahead and start having a de facto match race (possibly with some other boats threatening to join the fun). But while there is more action, more visual stimuli, you have to wonder if the flash interest factor of the fleet race really does hurt the overall drama and interest level that could otherwise be created and sustained.

#140 Hastings

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 03:48 PM

The criticism of fleet racing as part of the problem, the more I think of it, has some real merit. Sure, there is more action, but it is also more "noise". Going back to the analogy of biking.


This is an interesting discussion. But the Tour de France analogy is a it of a worry.

One of my close friends is a former Olympic athlete who is now so disgusted by drugs-in-sport he does not even follow his former sport.

I think the Tour has corrected many problems and, yes, the TV pictures are amazing.

But can anyone take any of that seriously?

Sailing likes to present an image of a clean and healthy sport attuned to nature.

That is why I nearly fell over and was angered by Daudney's cocaine episode and the truly pathetic effort to "explain" it.

#141 GauchoGreg

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 05:06 PM


The criticism of fleet racing as part of the problem, the more I think of it, has some real merit. Sure, there is more action, but it is also more "noise". Going back to the analogy of biking.


This is an interesting discussion. But the Tour de France analogy is a it of a worry.

One of my close friends is a former Olympic athlete who is now so disgusted by drugs-in-sport he does not even follow his former sport.

I think the Tour has corrected many problems and, yes, the TV pictures are amazing.

But can anyone take any of that seriously?

Sailing likes to present an image of a clean and healthy sport attuned to nature.

That is why I nearly fell over and was angered by Daudney's cocaine episode and the truly pathetic effort to "explain" it.


Not sure how big of a deal PEDs would be in sailing. Much of the PED advantage is in recovery. PEDs have a HUGE impact when the sport involves intense, long-term demands on your body. The TdF is a PERFECT situation where PEDs could make a massive difference, a difference big enough to encourage huge efforts to find ways to beat the system. Sure, PEDs may help a grinder, but even there, I'm not convinced that the difference in performance would be worth the effort/risk.

#142 Estar

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:03 PM

They are as light and as stiff as can be made.



Just as an aside, fyi, that's not actually true. There is a set minimum weight (6.8 kg) - and there are 13 other 'restrictions'.

The bikes could be made lighter using higher modulus carbon.

I think you have to admit that 'speed and spray' are not the driving force behind the TdF equipment rules/selection. They could easily allow faster and/or more 'exciting' bikes, but they choose not to.

#143 GauchoGreg

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 07:08 PM


They are as light and as stiff as can be made.



Just as an aside, fyi, that's not actually true. There is a set minimum weight (6.8 kg) - and there are 13 other 'restrictions'.

The bikes could be made lighter using higher modulus carbon.

I think you have to admit that 'speed and spray' are not the driving force behind the TdF equipment rules/selection. They could easily allow faster and/or more 'exciting' bikes, but they choose not to.


I don't know. The difference in speed between the all-out fastest bikes and those we see in the tour is not that great, particularly when considering the course and type of competition. The bike restrictions (not talking about cowlings and things of that nature, which are restricted in order to keep the focus on the rider, not reduce speed) certainly do not make a fundamental difference in the viewing, as compared to the massive difference we can actually see between monohulls and multis in sailing.

#144 Estar

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 07:43 PM

The difference in speed between the all-out fastest bikes and those we see in the tour is not that great, particularly when considering the course and type of competition.

First its just a plain fact that the TdF does not use anywhere near the fastest equipment available. Faired recumbent bikes hold every human-powered speed record from 200 meters to 3,000 miles. The difference in speed is about 60% at the top pro level (And still significantly faster for the unfaired models as aero drag is still MUCH lower). They can be used on all courses and types of road competition (there are even some offroad models).

The bike restrictions (not talking about cowlings and things of that nature, which are restricted in order to keep the focus on the rider, not reduce speed)

Second, in fact the original restrictions were put on, in 1934, when manufacturers of 'upright' bicycles lobbied to have a recumbent bike's one-hour record declared invalid. They did not want to have to compete in speed and wanted to keep the bike form 'pure'. You can look up the original documents if you want.

Third, well at least you are now admitting that the focus SHOULD be on the rider (Sailor) rather than the potential speed of the equipment. That's a step forward.

certainly do not make a fundamental difference in the viewing, as compared to the massive difference we can actually see between monohulls and multis in sailing.

Fourth, you are still too close to this and still don't get that for the non-sailor viewer BOTH monos AND Multis are just slow looking. There is no massive difference. When the camera zooms back to see any significant part of the fleet of AC45's they just look like children's bathtub toys bobbing along. When it zooms in the viewer can't tell the difference between a M32 or an AC45's motion/speed.



#145 GauchoGreg

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:36 PM


The difference in speed between the all-out fastest bikes and those we see in the tour is not that great, particularly when considering the course and type of competition.

First its just a plain fact that the TdF does not use anywhere near the fastest equipment available. Faired recumbent bikes hold every human-powered speed record from 200 meters to 3,000 miles. The difference in speed is about 60% at the top pro level (And still significantly faster for the unfaired models as aero drag is still MUCH lower). They can be used on all courses and types of road competition (there are even some offroad models).

The bike restrictions (not talking about cowlings and things of that nature, which are restricted in order to keep the focus on the rider, not reduce speed)

Second, in fact the original restrictions were put on, in 1934, when manufacturers of 'upright' bicycles lobbied to have a recumbent bike's one-hour record declared invalid. They did not want to have to compete in speed and wanted to keep the bike form 'pure'. You can look up the original documents if you want.

Third, well at least you are now admitting that the focus SHOULD be on the rider (Sailor) rather than the potential speed of the equipment. That's a step forward.

certainly do not make a fundamental difference in the viewing, as compared to the massive difference we can actually see between monohulls and multis in sailing.

Fourth, you are still too close to this and still don't get that for the non-sailor viewer BOTH monos AND Multis are just slow looking. There is no massive difference. When the camera zooms back to see any significant part of the fleet of AC45's they just look like children's bathtub toys bobbing along. When it zooms in the viewer can't tell the difference between a M32 or an AC45's motion/speed.



As I said at the beginning, with the TdF, they wanted to have the focus on the riders, so they did not want to have the riders sitting down and covered in aero coverings. They also wanted to have a single "type" of bike, one that would be good on flats, hills, sprinting, etc. So, they opted to restrict the bike types to uprights with general dimensional restrictions. But within that, they leave it open. And the point to be made was that they had no interest in slowing down the bikes . . . . that was NOT the point, which Chris 249 appeared to be trying to make.

Now as for the perception of speed, and the excitement level. I totally disagree with you. The two components that do give the sailing more perception of speed is the fact that the boats ARE going twice as fast, with the spray that comes along with it, but also the proximity to shorelines and boats, and crossing speeds, which are truly MUCH more reflective of speed than we have seen in the past. Another consideration that helps, I believe, is the knowledge that these boats are actually thought to be fast and somewhat dangerous. This makes the viewer perceive it even more. I personally know several people who are not sailing people who have responded that the boats are MUCH more exciting, as is the racing. But the fact that they have not yet been hooked is more to do with the fact that they never know when the racing is going to be (failure to create good schedules and promote the events).

Now, all that being said, I will say it just may not be possible. Sailing may not have a chance to be a commercially viable spectator sport, rather than story line sport. I thought it could. I was excited that someone with the money to make an effort has tried. It still may work. But if it doesn't, I don't think you can blame it on the boats, as if anything, the boats and the coverage have been the elements that do seem to work.

#146 maxmini

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 09:59 PM



The difference in speed between the all-out fastest bikes and those we see in the tour is not that great, particularly when considering the course and type of competition.

First its just a plain fact that the TdF does not use anywhere near the fastest equipment available. Faired recumbent bikes hold every human-powered speed record from 200 meters to 3,000 miles. The difference in speed is about 60% at the top pro level (And still significantly faster for the unfaired models as aero drag is still MUCH lower). They can be used on all courses and types of road competition (there are even some offroad models).

The bike restrictions (not talking about cowlings and things of that nature, which are restricted in order to keep the focus on the rider, not reduce speed)

Second, in fact the original restrictions were put on, in 1934, when manufacturers of 'upright' bicycles lobbied to have a recumbent bike's one-hour record declared invalid. They did not want to have to compete in speed and wanted to keep the bike form 'pure'. You can look up the original documents if you want.

Third, well at least you are now admitting that the focus SHOULD be on the rider (Sailor) rather than the potential speed of the equipment. That's a step forward.

certainly do not make a fundamental difference in the viewing, as compared to the massive difference we can actually see between monohulls and multis in sailing.

Fourth, you are still too close to this and still don't get that for the non-sailor viewer BOTH monos AND Multis are just slow looking. There is no massive difference. When the camera zooms back to see any significant part of the fleet of AC45's they just look like children's bathtub toys bobbing along. When it zooms in the viewer can't tell the difference between a M32 or an AC45's motion/speed.



As I said at the beginning, with the TdF, they wanted to have the focus on the riders, so they did not want to have the riders sitting down and covered in aero coverings. They also wanted to have a single "type" of bike, one that would be good on flats, hills, sprinting, etc. So, they opted to restrict the bike types to uprights with general dimensional restrictions. But within that, they leave it open. And the point to be made was that they had no interest in slowing down the bikes . . . . that was NOT the point, which Chris 249 appeared to be trying to make.

Now as for the perception of speed, and the excitement level. I totally disagree with you. The two components that do give the sailing more perception of speed is the fact that the boats ARE going twice as fast, with the spray that comes along with it, but also the proximity to shorelines and boats, and crossing speeds, which are truly MUCH more reflective of speed than we have seen in the past. Another consideration that helps, I believe, is the knowledge that these boats are actually thought to be fast and somewhat dangerous. This makes the viewer perceive it even more. I personally know several people who are not sailing people who have responded that the boats are MUCH more exciting, as is the racing. But the fact that they have not yet been hooked is more to do with the fact that they never know when the racing is going to be (failure to create good schedules and promote the events).

Now, all that being said, I will say it just may not be possible. Sailing may not have a chance to be a commercially viable spectator sport, rather than story line sport. I thought it could. I was excited that someone with the money to make an effort has tried. It still may work. But if it doesn't, I don't think you can blame it on the boats, as if anything, the boats and the coverage have been the elements that do seem to work.


If they are not sailing people than how can the boats me MUCH more exciting. More exciting than what ? If they have no sailing backround what are they basing their comments on ? The only speed that counts is the speed BETWEEN the boats , not the shore line . Thats what racing is about . Larry has made a more than valiant effort but sailboat racing has always and will always be more about participation and participants not a television audience. The shrinking TV ratings are proof enough .

#147 pjfranks

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 10:00 PM



The difference in speed between the all-out fastest bikes and those we see in the tour is not that great, particularly when considering the course and type of competition.

First its just a plain fact that the TdF does not use anywhere near the fastest equipment available. Faired recumbent bikes hold every human-powered speed record from 200 meters to 3,000 miles. The difference in speed is about 60% at the top pro level (And still significantly faster for the unfaired models as aero drag is still MUCH lower). They can be used on all courses and types of road competition (there are even some offroad models).

The bike restrictions (not talking about cowlings and things of that nature, which are restricted in order to keep the focus on the rider, not reduce speed)

Second, in fact the original restrictions were put on, in 1934, when manufacturers of 'upright' bicycles lobbied to have a recumbent bike's one-hour record declared invalid. They did not want to have to compete in speed and wanted to keep the bike form 'pure'. You can look up the original documents if you want.

Third, well at least you are now admitting that the focus SHOULD be on the rider (Sailor) rather than the potential speed of the equipment. That's a step forward.

certainly do not make a fundamental difference in the viewing, as compared to the massive difference we can actually see between monohulls and multis in sailing.

Fourth, you are still too close to this and still don't get that for the non-sailor viewer BOTH monos AND Multis are just slow looking. There is no massive difference. When the camera zooms back to see any significant part of the fleet of AC45's they just look like children's bathtub toys bobbing along. When it zooms in the viewer can't tell the difference between a M32 or an AC45's motion/speed.



As I said at the beginning, with the TdF, they wanted to have the focus on the riders, so they did not want to have the riders sitting down and covered in aero coverings. They also wanted to have a single "type" of bike, one that would be good on flats, hills, sprinting, etc. So, they opted to restrict the bike types to uprights with general dimensional restrictions. But within that, they leave it open. And the point to be made was that they had no interest in slowing down the bikes . . . . that was NOT the point, which Chris 249 appeared to be trying to make.

Now as for the perception of speed, and the excitement level. I totally disagree with you. The two components that do give the sailing more perception of speed is the fact that the boats ARE going twice as fast, with the spray that comes along with it, but also the proximity to shorelines and boats, and crossing speeds, which are truly MUCH more reflective of speed than we have seen in the past. Another consideration that helps, I believe, is the knowledge that these boats are actually thought to be fast and somewhat dangerous. This makes the viewer perceive it even more. I personally know several people who are not sailing people who have responded that the boats are MUCH more exciting, as is the racing. But the fact that they have not yet been hooked is more to do with the fact that they never know when the racing is going to be (failure to create good schedules and promote the events).

Now, all that being said, I will say it just may not be possible. Sailing may not have a chance to be a commercially viable spectator sport, rather than story line sport. I thought it could. I was excited that someone with the money to make an effort has tried. It still may work. But if it doesn't, I don't think you can blame it on the boats, as if anything, the boats and the coverage have been the elements that do seem to work.

The TdF is a human endurance test, not so the AC. The AC is a wedge test. That's why the TdF is so popular, human interest. Most people can relate to cycling or motor racing, football as they are within most peoples life experience. Easy to understand. Hence the popularity.

#148 Indio

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 10:16 PM



The difference in speed between the all-out fastest bikes and those we see in the tour is not that great, particularly when considering the course and type of competition.

First its just a plain fact that the TdF does not use anywhere near the fastest equipment available. Faired recumbent bikes hold every human-powered speed record from 200 meters to 3,000 miles. The difference in speed is about 60% at the top pro level (And still significantly faster for the unfaired models as aero drag is still MUCH lower). They can be used on all courses and types of road competition (there are even some offroad models).

The bike restrictions (not talking about cowlings and things of that nature, which are restricted in order to keep the focus on the rider, not reduce speed)

Second, in fact the original restrictions were put on, in 1934, when manufacturers of 'upright' bicycles lobbied to have a recumbent bike's one-hour record declared invalid. They did not want to have to compete in speed and wanted to keep the bike form 'pure'. You can look up the original documents if you want.

Third, well at least you are now admitting that the focus SHOULD be on the rider (Sailor) rather than the potential speed of the equipment. That's a step forward.

certainly do not make a fundamental difference in the viewing, as compared to the massive difference we can actually see between monohulls and multis in sailing.

Fourth, you are still too close to this and still don't get that for the non-sailor viewer BOTH monos AND Multis are just slow looking. There is no massive difference. When the camera zooms back to see any significant part of the fleet of AC45's they just look like children's bathtub toys bobbing along. When it zooms in the viewer can't tell the difference between a M32 or an AC45's motion/speed.


As I said at the beginning, with the TdF, they wanted to have the focus on the riders, so they did not want to have the riders sitting down and covered in aero coverings. They also wanted to have a single "type" of bike, one that would be good on flats, hills, sprinting, etc. So, they opted to restrict the bike types to uprights with general dimensional restrictions. But within that, they leave it open. And the point to be made was that they had no interest in slowing down the bikes . . . . that was NOT the point, which Chris 249 appeared to be trying to make.

Now as for the perception of speed, and the excitement level. I totally disagree with you. The two components that do give the sailing more perception of speed is the fact that the boats ARE going twice as fast, with the spray that comes along with it, but also the proximity to shorelines and boats, and crossing speeds, which are truly MUCH more reflective of speed than we have seen in the past. Another consideration that helps, I believe, is the knowledge that these boats are actually thought to be fast and somewhat dangerous. This makes the viewer perceive it even more. I personally know several people who are not sailing people who have responded that the boats are MUCH more exciting, as is the racing. But the fact that they have not yet been hooked is more to do with the fact that they never know when the racing is going to be (failure to create good schedules and promote the events).

Now, all that being said, I will say it just may not be possible. Sailing may not have a chance to be a commercially viable spectator sport, rather than story line sport. I thought it could. I was excited that someone with the money to make an effort has tried. It still may work. But if it doesn't, I don't think you can blame it on the boats, as if anything, the boats and the coverage have been the elements that do seem to work.

What a load of bollocks!! "Speed" and "sailing" is an oxymoron, perpetuated by morons like you. If you want to watch wind-powered speed on the water, go watch Vestas SailRocket...and while you're at it, tell us how many millions of spectators were fighting over every available spot on the beach - or not!

"Sailing" is a niche sport, perceived as the domain of the rich in certain societies, affordably accessible in others. Trying to lure the ADHD crash-bang spectators who watch motorsport into watching sailing is like trying to turn some of the Penthouse bimbos or SWS and Wethog into brain surgeons.

The only sailing event which attracts the type of parochial fanaticism is the AC, but then only by people who have a dog in the fight.

Larry Ellison is to be applauded for trying, for all the right reasons. That those he entrusted to get the job done have let him down is inexcusable. The AC format is what is wrong, but that's the attraction and uniqueness of the AC which hopefully will last in perpetuity.

#149 GauchoGreg

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 10:21 PM




The difference in speed between the all-out fastest bikes and those we see in the tour is not that great, particularly when considering the course and type of competition.

First its just a plain fact that the TdF does not use anywhere near the fastest equipment available. Faired recumbent bikes hold every human-powered speed record from 200 meters to 3,000 miles. The difference in speed is about 60% at the top pro level (And still significantly faster for the unfaired models as aero drag is still MUCH lower). They can be used on all courses and types of road competition (there are even some offroad models).

The bike restrictions (not talking about cowlings and things of that nature, which are restricted in order to keep the focus on the rider, not reduce speed)

Second, in fact the original restrictions were put on, in 1934, when manufacturers of 'upright' bicycles lobbied to have a recumbent bike's one-hour record declared invalid. They did not want to have to compete in speed and wanted to keep the bike form 'pure'. You can look up the original documents if you want.

Third, well at least you are now admitting that the focus SHOULD be on the rider (Sailor) rather than the potential speed of the equipment. That's a step forward.

certainly do not make a fundamental difference in the viewing, as compared to the massive difference we can actually see between monohulls and multis in sailing.

Fourth, you are still too close to this and still don't get that for the non-sailor viewer BOTH monos AND Multis are just slow looking. There is no massive difference. When the camera zooms back to see any significant part of the fleet of AC45's they just look like children's bathtub toys bobbing along. When it zooms in the viewer can't tell the difference between a M32 or an AC45's motion/speed.



As I said at the beginning, with the TdF, they wanted to have the focus on the riders, so they did not want to have the riders sitting down and covered in aero coverings. They also wanted to have a single "type" of bike, one that would be good on flats, hills, sprinting, etc. So, they opted to restrict the bike types to uprights with general dimensional restrictions. But within that, they leave it open. And the point to be made was that they had no interest in slowing down the bikes . . . . that was NOT the point, which Chris 249 appeared to be trying to make.

Now as for the perception of speed, and the excitement level. I totally disagree with you. The two components that do give the sailing more perception of speed is the fact that the boats ARE going twice as fast, with the spray that comes along with it, but also the proximity to shorelines and boats, and crossing speeds, which are truly MUCH more reflective of speed than we have seen in the past. Another consideration that helps, I believe, is the knowledge that these boats are actually thought to be fast and somewhat dangerous. This makes the viewer perceive it even more. I personally know several people who are not sailing people who have responded that the boats are MUCH more exciting, as is the racing. But the fact that they have not yet been hooked is more to do with the fact that they never know when the racing is going to be (failure to create good schedules and promote the events).

Now, all that being said, I will say it just may not be possible. Sailing may not have a chance to be a commercially viable spectator sport, rather than story line sport. I thought it could. I was excited that someone with the money to make an effort has tried. It still may work. But if it doesn't, I don't think you can blame it on the boats, as if anything, the boats and the coverage have been the elements that do seem to work.


If they are not sailing people than how can the boats me MUCH more exciting. More exciting than what ? If they have no sailing backround what are they basing their comments on ? The only speed that counts is the speed BETWEEN the boats , not the shore line . Thats what racing is about . Larry has made a more than valiant effort but sailboat racing has always and will always be more about participation and participants not a television audience. The shrinking TV ratings are proof enough .


Not everyone that has ever sailed or has seen the Americas Cup is a sailing fan. These are people that have sailed, and have seen past America's Cups. They indicated that the ACWS in SFO was very exciting, and they are blown away by how fast the boats are and looked.

Sorry, but it is not JUST the speed between the boats that counts. True speed, for whatever medium, is important. That's why people would rather watch F1 than NASCAR trucks, or local sprint cars, for that matter. The idea that you are watching what could be considered the fastest cars for the track, or the fastest boats for the course, makes it more compelling. If you knew there were boats around that could clobber the ones on the course, it takes a lot away from it. Also, knowing that the boats are really on the edge, where their power could result in a real accident, gives the racing more perception of speed.

The TV ratings are not encouraging. While you could be right, I'm not totally convinced, yet, that sailing can't be a decent spectator sport. I believe the right effort, a truly impressive effort, was made to try and establish sailing as a spectator sport. HOWEVER, they have not managed the final components, develop a story line, an intrigue that goes beyond the action, develop a regular, dependable schedule, and promote it. If people have an interest to see how Loick, or Dean, or Nathan, or whichever character they follow is handling whatever issue has come up, how they are dealing with X, and if they can improve on the performance of last time, etc., it would certainly help. It would certainly help if they had someone other than the horrible "color" commentator of the past few regattas that might actually give the characters character. One thing, though, I'm not sure we will ever see an effort made again like the current one to give us, the sailing fans, viewing opportunities we are now getting if it does not work out for Ellison and AC34, and possibly AC35, if he wins.

#150 SimonN

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 10:48 PM



The criticism of fleet racing as part of the problem, the more I think of it, has some real merit. Sure, there is more action, but it is also more "noise". Going back to the analogy of biking.


This is an interesting discussion. But the Tour de France analogy is a it of a worry.

One of my close friends is a former Olympic athlete who is now so disgusted by drugs-in-sport he does not even follow his former sport.

I think the Tour has corrected many problems and, yes, the TV pictures are amazing.

But can anyone take any of that seriously?

Sailing likes to present an image of a clean and healthy sport attuned to nature.

That is why I nearly fell over and was angered by Daudney's cocaine episode and the truly pathetic effort to "explain" it.


Not sure how big of a deal PEDs would be in sailing. Much of the PED advantage is in recovery. PEDs have a HUGE impact when the sport involves intense, long-term demands on your body. The TdF is a PERFECT situation where PEDs could make a massive difference, a difference big enough to encourage huge efforts to find ways to beat the system. Sure, PEDs may help a grinder, but even there, I'm not convinced that the difference in performance would be worth the effort/risk.

PED can make a huge difference in sailing but, fortunately, we haven't had any real problems to date. For instance, take the Finn class, with its unlimited kinetics. Even for the "average" Finn sailor, the strength requirement means many hours of physical training but in teh case of somebody like Ben Ainslie he needed to do about 2 hours every day in the gym in order to add bulk (he was too light and increased his weight by over 10kgs of muscle)) and also to be strong enough to pump and ouch his way downwind. PED's would have made his task a lot easier, as it would have for any of them. Even at the level I sail at, PED's would help me considerably. To get to the right weight for an A Class, I need to do 3-4 weights sessions per week. The biggest limit on me, and more importantly, somebody like Ben Ainslie, is recovery time, and PED's would help big time with this. in fact, only on Monday, my trainer responded to my complaints about a hard session by saying there was an easier way, cheating with some "juice" (roids!).

Then there is the racing itself. Even with the current shorter formats we see, it is still and endurance sport. The more tired you get, the more potential issues you have with your decision making - improved fitness leads to better decision making. There are various options of how to increase your aerobic capacity that would benefit you when racing, including blood doping and EPO.

There is a reason why ISAF has an extensive doping policy and why Olympic and AC level sailors are tested, regularly. There is also a fairly good body of research on the whole issue. For me, the most extraordinary thing is that the sport hasn't had a PED scandal.

#151 Hastings

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 11:14 PM

People watch people.




So the most memorable Cup moment was at the post-race press conference where Dicko was baiting Dennis.

And the big fella was set to punch someone.

Called the NZ'ers "cheats."

Tsk, tsk!

#152 maxmini

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 12:17 AM





The difference in speed between the all-out fastest bikes and those we see in the tour is not that great, particularly when considering the course and type of competition.

First its just a plain fact that the TdF does not use anywhere near the fastest equipment available. Faired recumbent bikes hold every human-powered speed record from 200 meters to 3,000 miles. The difference in speed is about 60% at the top pro level (And still significantly faster for the unfaired models as aero drag is still MUCH lower). They can be used on all courses and types of road competition (there are even some offroad models).

The bike restrictions (not talking about cowlings and things of that nature, which are restricted in order to keep the focus on the rider, not reduce speed)


Second, in fact the original restrictions were put on, in 1934, when manufacturers of 'upright' bicycles lobbied to have a recumbent bike's one-hour record declared invalid. They did not want to have to compete in speed and wanted to keep the bike form 'pure'. You can look up the original documents if you want.

Third, well at least you are now admitting that the focus SHOULD be on the rider (Sailor) rather than the potential speed of the equipment. That's a step forward.

certainly do not make a fundamental difference in the viewing, as compared to the massive difference we can actually see between monohulls and multis in sailing.

Fourth, you are still too close to this and still don't get that for the non-sailor viewer BOTH monos AND Multis are just slow looking. There is no massive difference. When the camera zooms back to see any significant part of the fleet of AC45's they just look like children's bathtub toys bobbing along. When it zooms in the viewer can't tell the difference between a M32 or an AC45's motion/speed.



As I said at the beginning, with the TdF, they wanted to have the focus on the riders, so they did not want to have the riders sitting down and covered in aero coverings. They also wanted to have a single "type" of bike, one that would be good on flats, hills, sprinting, etc. So, they opted to restrict the bike types to uprights with general dimensional restrictions. But within that, they leave it open. And the point to be made was that they had no interest in slowing down the bikes . . . . that was NOT the point, which Chris 249 appeared to be trying to make.

Now as for the perception of speed, and the excitement level. I totally disagree with you. The two components that do give the sailing more perception of speed is the fact that the boats ARE going twice as fast, with the spray that comes along with it, but also the proximity to shorelines and boats, and crossing speeds, which are truly MUCH more reflective of speed than we have seen in the past. Another consideration that helps, I believe, is the knowledge that these boats are actually thought to be fast and somewhat dangerous. This makes the viewer perceive it even more. I personally know several people who are not sailing people who have responded that the boats are MUCH more exciting, as is the racing. But the fact that they have not yet been hooked is more to do with the fact that they never know when the racing is going to be (failure to create good schedules and promote the events).

Now, all that being said, I will say it just may not be possible. Sailing may not have a chance to be a commercially viable spectator sport, rather than story line sport. I thought it could. I was excited that someone with the money to make an effort has tried. It still may work. But if it doesn't, I don't think you can blame it on the boats, as if anything, the boats and the coverage have been the elements that do seem to work.


If they are not sailing people than how can the boats me MUCH more exciting. More exciting than what ? If they have no sailing backround what are they basing their comments on ? The only speed that counts is the speed BETWEEN the boats , not the shore line . Thats what racing is about . Larry has made a more than valiant effort but sailboat racing has always and will always be more about participation and participants not a television audience. The shrinking TV ratings are proof enough .


Not everyone that has ever sailed or has seen the Americas Cup is a sailing fan. These are people that have sailed, and have seen past America's Cups. They indicated that the ACWS in SFO was very exciting, and they are blown away by how fast the boats are and looked.

Sorry, but it is not JUST the speed between the boats that counts. True speed, for whatever medium, is important. That's why people would rather watch F1 than NASCAR trucks, or local sprint cars, for that matter. The idea that you are watching what could be considered the fastest cars for the track, or the fastest boats for the course, makes it more compelling. If you knew there were boats around that could clobber the ones on the course, it takes a lot away from it. Also, knowing that the boats are really on the edge, where their power could result in a real accident, gives the racing more perception of speed.

The TV ratings are not encouraging. While you could be right, I'm not totally convinced, yet, that sailing can't be a decent spectator sport. I believe the right effort, a truly impressive effort, was made to try and establish sailing as a spectator sport. HOWEVER, they have not managed the final components, develop a story line, an intrigue that goes beyond the action, develop a regular, dependable schedule, and promote it. If people have an interest to see how Loick, or Dean, or Nathan, or whichever character they follow is handling whatever issue has come up, how they are dealing with X, and if they can improve on the performance of last time, etc., it would certainly help. It would certainly help if they had someone other than the horrible "color" commentator of the past few regattas that might actually give the characters character. One thing, though, I'm not sure we will ever see an effort made again like the current one to give us, the sailing fans, viewing opportunities we are now getting if it does not work out for Ellison and AC34, and possibly AC35, if he wins.

.

To use your auto racing a analogy if it was all a out speed the NHRA would be top dog with speeds over 100 mph faster than F1 but we know it isn't . Unless you are on the boat sailing will never be " fast ".

#153 ~Stingray~

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 12:45 AM

Perhaps it could have happened in other boats too but the SF2 Match Races were very, very compelling. The Fleet Race Final was too although if they'd seen the incredible JS comeback from sooner, it would have been even more so.

I like the AC45's, a lot.

#154 PeterHuston

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 12:47 AM


People watch people.




So the most memorable Cup moment was at the post-race press conference where Dicko was baiting Dennis.

And the big fella was set to punch someone.

Called the NZ'ers "cheats."

Tsk, tsk!


That was just DC doing something the was very good at - getting into a young punks head. And it worked.

Later on DC becomes sort of loved in NZL.

Dicko and Blackaller at their best in the video interview from '87 at the end of this nice piece by Gladwell on Tuna.
http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?Nid=104189&refre=y&ntid=20&rid=8




What Kiwi sailor is loved in the US these days? Any?

#155 Chris 249

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 12:52 AM



The Tour de France is, I believe, the real model the AC people should be trying to emulate. For what the events look like, and for how it is promoted.


If that is true - and you may well be right - then how do we make the AC more like the Tour?

1- restrict the speed, design and development of the gear dramatically. Tour bikes are (depending on the course) about 60% as fast as the fastest bicycles. That means that the average viewer can relate to what the legends are doing.

2- change the course to slow the contestants down dramatically and bring them right into the spectators. The Tour's mountaintop finishes, where the riders are going so slowly that spectators can run alongside, create the highest live spectator interest and (IIRC) the highest ratings.

3- as in 2, bring the course right into the heart of many different parts of the country, including byways and villages, on a course determined by geography.

4- realise that about 1/3 of the crowd are not there to watch the race, but the sponsor's caravan.

5- ignore the claims that fans need a clear leader and winner. The overall winner of the Tour often wins only one or two stages, spends 99+% of their time following others, and will regularly finish in the 20s or 30s in a stage.

6- make the pros use essentially the same gear as the legends of decades ago, club racers and weekend warriors, and race in the same sort of way.

7- race this restricted equipment over iconic courses so that fans can compare current pros to earlier legends, emulate their heroes, gain an understanding of the challenge, and become passionate missionaries for the event.

8 - ensure that some parts of the event (ie some courses, some events) will suit other competitors and others races/stages/days will suit other competitors, to allow specialists and all-rounders to have their days of glory.

Funnily enough, racing WW/LW in wing masted cats seems to be about as far from following the lessons of the Tour, the world's #1 annual sporting event, as it can be.


I believe you are missing some big points.

First of all, the TdF became something, first (of course, speaking about in America) when LeMonde won, then it was catapulted when Armstrong won. This is where those who speak of nationality rules are on to something. People want to identify with competitors, they want to root on "one of their own". Unfotunately, LE's drive to simply have the best has ended up shooting himself in the foot a bit. Swap the crews with Artemis, and he could actually have an "American" team to promote. Not saying that would make all the difference, but it would help. I believe Americans appreciate immigrants, they have shown they will support those who love America and move here, not just those who are born here, but still, you improve the marketability by making it Us against them. You can bet your ass cycling viewing in the US is waning since the passing of Armstrong, and the black eyes created by his and Landis' violations. At the same time, I would bet that interest increased in Australia and GB after the past two TdFs. I don't know how much can really be done to drum up more nationality intrigue . . . that may simply be a limitation in this case for yachting.

So let's re-institute nationality clauses, and tighter ones than those used previously which saw things like Valentjin co-designing for Australia and then designing for the USA.

As for cycling booming when Armstrong, Cadel etc won the Tour - well, that seems to come into the "lotsa hype, no substance" category. There have been some articles saying that cycling is booming down here as a result of Cadel's Tour win, but for one thing it was in a major growth spurt before Cadel won, and secondly the shops I go to say that there is no boom due to Cadel's victory.

Will cycling grow as a result of Cadel and Wiggins winning? Perhaps, but a vital factor is that their gear is restricted to a design that anyone can use and therefore people can relate to them and emulate them.

Would cycling grow if Cadel, Lance and Wiggins had won a competition using gear that was radically different to the gear a normal amateur uses? Would it grow if they used gear that a normal club does not race? Would it grow if they used gear that a normal shop could not sell, that a normal enthusiast could not store, own or use???

Highly unlikely! In what popular participant sport do top-line competitors use gear of a design that is radically different to the stuff a club competitor uses?

Secondly, the TdF's growth in American viewership was aided by timing, coming on during a time of year with limited sports. It occurs during July, after Wimbledon, before the US Open, when the only real sports competition is baseball. It got a boost by NBC airing the racing when there was little else for them to air. Then the cable channels picked up the cheap coverage and showed it multiple times per day, but it was promoted on NBC pretty heavily. Further, they did a great job with on-line coverage. But the lesser cable channel coverage in conjunction with pretty heavy promotion did the job. As with the ACWS, the TdF had incredible coverage, great aerial footage, beautiful scenery, story lines for the setting, not just the racing. This brought interest from non-sailing people, like my wife, who just loves watching the French countryside (while shy may not want to have a baseball or football game on in the background on a saturday/sunday family day, she likes having the TdF on for the backdrop). I would say the AC has the same potential for that, with beautiful settings, particularly now with the close in sailing. But the set timing, the time of year, the setting, the promotion, and the coverage all have a big part of the success of the TdF. The AC only have two of those components right (the setting and the coverage). They have done a horrendous job of setting up the timing (actually setting a schedule, and scheduling when there is limited viewing competition), and even worse with promotion.

Agree with all that - but the points I made above remain perfectly valid.

As for your bizarre claims that speed is a detriment . . . . First of all, mountain top finishes are not popular because they are slow, they are popular because those are the only stages where you can be confident that the top riders will be competing for the stage win,

The MTFs certainly prove that speed is NOT necessary for popularity, which is the point. When the "queen stages" of the world's #1 annual event are fought out at jogging speed then there is proof that high speed is not a requirement for high ratings.

And while domestiques and sprinters may be used up or dropped, no one can be confident that the GC contenders will be competing for the MTF stages - they are regularly fought out by guys who finish 25-62nd overall, like Bryce Feillu. Only about 1/3 of recent MTFs have been won by GC contenders.

The most popular sailing classes are slow ones, the biggest sailing races are slow ones, and AFAIK the most-watched sailing races are fairly slow ones like the starts of the French shorthanded races that now use 60' monos rather than tris, the Sydney-Hobart, allegedly the Swedish match racing, etc.

and it will not just be a peleton race with 2 seconds of sprint. It's not like people tune out on the fast descent if you have a mountain stage with a short descent at the end, where the winner is still likely to be a top contender. But still, the mountain top finish has the drama of pain and effort, the probability of a top contender winning, as well as symbolism going for it. It would not be diminished if the riders could be going another 10mph faster up that final climb.

And more, on the gear. The bikes used in the TdF are hardly poor on the tech front of cycling. Yes, the organizers control the shape of the bike, but not in order to control the speed, but rather to keep the race about the riders. Within that box rule, the bikes can be tweaked to get as much speed as possible. They are as light and as stiff as can be made. They have to tackle a variety of terrain. The TT bikes have as much aero work built in to them as possible. It is not like they are giving the riders limitations on chain rings, or on tire tread, or on pedal clips, etc, to keep them slow. Hell, if slow was the goal, they could make each rider pull a parachute behind them or make them ride with 3" wide tires, tiny chain rings, etc.


NOTE - Estar made some of these points while I was still writing this, but I'll chuck it in anyway....

The Tour road bikes are about 54% of the speed of the fastest bicycles (streamlined recumbents) using the hour record as a guide. That's about the same margin as the difference between a Moth and Radial, roughly the same as the difference between an ORMA 60 tri and a 12 Metre according to LYS ratings.

As Estar noted, it's not all about the fairings - unfaired 'bents are also generally faster. Nor is it about using the same bike in all stages, as riders can and do swap bikes even during a stage.

The rules that make Tour/ASO/UCI bikes so slow don't just make the competition even (is there any evidence that gear is more important in 'bent racing??), they also mean that Joe Average or Weekend Warren can use or relate to the same gear, and that the whole industry can sell similar gear. Sam Whittingham and Francesco Russo go twice as fast as Lance or Cadel, but they do it in streamlined 'bents that almost no one can relate to and therefore almost no one has heard of them. Would Lance have been such a hero if he used something that the couch potato had never used and never seen and could not relate to?

It is completely wrong to say that within a general box, they leave the Tour bikes open. They MUST be production bikes, available to the general public. They MUST conform to strict weight, design and dimension limits that are intended to make them PRACTICAL FOR REGULAR USE BY AMATEUR RACERS AND LEISURE RIDERS, as well as similar to the bikes that the general public know about.

I train and/or race with guys like the Oceania road champ and a world Masters record holder and world champ. My mother in law could ride their bikes. This is very different from the AC.

The box is so tight that bikes are measured for issues like aero bar extension and BB to seat lateral distance in a jig before you roll up to the start in titles. Some of these rules are a pain in the arse (literally, in the case of the BB-seat dimension) and they are NOT open - I'm going to have to buy new un-streamlined bloody water bottles for my TT bike next season, and they will even measure your sock height at higher level racing!

The TT bikes you mention are subject to the same rigid general rules and are only about 8-10% quicker than the road bikes. Significantly, they are banned from mass-start stages because road bikes are more suitable to close racing - the extra speed is considered irrelevant in spectator appeal.

The facts are simple and clear - the world's #1 annual sporting event, which you held up as a model, uses slow gear designed to extremely restrictive rules that mean that household-name heroes like Wiggins and (formerly) Armstrong use gear that looks like the stuff that Joe Average rode to school when he was a kid, and gear that is just what Joe could buy at his local shop and ride that weekend. That, some of us would say, is how you make a popular sporting event.

PS - motor racing is an interesting example of how NOT to make a sport popular in some ways. It's heavily supported by one of the world's biggest industries and yet in places like Oz and the UK, where good data is available, it attracts only about as many participants as sailing. Given the money put into promoting it by giant multinationals, that's a disastrous outcome from some angles.

It's also interesting to note how few of the world'a major car makers use car racing as a major promotional tool. If it attracted more buyers why do they ignore it? Oh, and of course car racing is normally under VERY restrictive rules. but that is overlooked. It's just that, like you with the Tour bikes, people assume that the gear used by the premier event is the fastest stuff.

PS - re speed. Since bike racing and the AC are being discussed here, it's sort of fun to note that grandfathers on pushies reach similar speeds to the AC boats on our regional time trial course, and of course a windsurfer is in the same territory. For some of us, that sort of underlines that AC boats aren't really all that fast unless you look at them in perspective - and if you look as them in perspective then even an IACC boat was quick.

#156 eric e

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 12:54 AM

you want kiwi sailors to be more american?

in your face abusive, screaming, children

like macenro?

is that gangster rap crap what it takes to be loved in the usa like tupac

paris hilton, kim kardesian and melt down brittany?

why should kiwi sailors drop so low

that americans will love them?

so you can make more money selling sailing

fuck off



#157 ~Stingray~

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 01:04 AM

What Kiwi sailor is loved in the US these days? Any?

He may not be yet but I could see GD reaching 'legendary' status in AC34. The guy has the It factor in abundance, far more than DC ever did imho.

#158 PeterHuston

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 01:06 AM

you want kiwi sailors to be more american?

in your face abusive, screaming, children

like macenro?

is that gangster rap crap what it takes to be loved in the usa like tupac

paris hilton, kim kardesian and melt down brittany?

why should kiwi sailors drop so low

that americans will love them?

so you can make more money selling sailing

fuck off



Seems it's the Kiwi's who want the American money in sailing, and who are the best at getting it, but if they want to be part of the TV culture to make more money, then they have to play the game according to what the market wants.

#159 ~HHN92~

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 01:52 AM



People watch people.




So the most memorable Cup moment was at the post-race press conference where Dicko was baiting Dennis.

And the big fella was set to punch someone.

Called the NZ'ers "cheats."

Tsk, tsk!


That was just DC doing something the was very good at - getting into a young punks head. And it worked.

Later on DC becomes sort of loved in NZL.

Dicko and Blackaller at their best in the video interview from '87 at the end of this nice piece by Gladwell on Tuna.
http://www.sail-worl...y&ntid=20&rid=8




What Kiwi sailor is loved in the US these days? Any?


Several challenging skippers from the past were respected, starting with Lipton, Hardy was appreciated for his gracious tone in defeat also, and even Bondy was liked during his tenure as challenger. I think that Blake was a respected challenger, building his rep in the same way as Bondy when NZ won in '95.

But, currently other than the fanatics around this place that appreciate his candor, GD is the most notable (even though there is a DB lover or two........R ;) ) Kiwi AC personality and probably no one in the casual sailing world. Outside of this arena, how many are noted for their personality and skill?

Not many.

#160 ~Stingray~

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 02:05 AM

^ TT can definitely hold his own but Cayard is more than capable too.

Larry is the biggest personality 'potential' of them all, should he choose to get into it. Seriously, there's been almost nothing else like him in the AC, ever, by most any appropriate AC history comparison.

That his past two Keynotes at Oracle World have been introduced by theater-shaking AC/DC pounding video soundtracks of AC footage, might suggest just how big this will get come the Match.

#161 Chris 249

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 03:33 AM

So they're trying to attract young viewers and yet the soundtracks are Bruce Springsteen and Acca Dacca?

I think kids these days are much less afraid of old music than my generation was, but it does seem contradictory to talk about the Facebook generation and then play mainstream Flintstones music.

#162 ro!

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 03:43 AM


What Kiwi sailor is loved in the US these days? Any?

He may not be yet but I could see GD reaching 'legendary' status in AC34. The guy has the It factor in abundance, far more than DC ever did imho.


The pinot kicked in early tonight...Dalts may have cred in NZed... but Dennis is the only AC name the US joe public have ever heard of...

#163 dogwatch

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 04:03 AM

pump and ouch


This would be "pump and ooch". However perhaps he was going "ouch" too.

#164 dogwatch

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 04:05 AM

That his past two Keynotes at Oracle World have been introduced by theater-shaking AC/DC pounding video soundtracks


How appropriate, shit dated music to go with the shit dated software.

#165 ~Stingray~

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 04:27 AM

Okay, it may not be AC/DC but it typically is high-energy, matching the overall OW conference atmosphere.

At one of them I went to, one of the three headliner bands Wednesday night was a girl band named AC/DShe, and actually very good. JS has said that Back In Black is his favorite song (almost ashamed to admit it, but it's among my favorite rock tunes too), said again in last week's ACD episode.

I guess the larger point is that LE inhabits an up-tempo world, exudes it, revels in it too.

GD? Maybe not but he's hard core in other ways.

#166 PeterHuston

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 04:44 AM

Okay, it may not be AC/DC but it typically is high-energy, matching the overall OW conference atmosphere.

At one of them I went to, one of the three headliner bands Wednesday night was a girl band named AC/DShe, and actually very good. JS has said that Back In Black is his favorite song (almost ashamed to admit it, but it's among my favorite rock tunes too), said again in last week's ACD episode.

I guess the larger point is that LE inhabits an up-tempo world, exudes it, revels in it too.

GD? Maybe not but he's hard core in other ways.


Dalton doesn't look or sound like he'd EVER get his groove on, and if so, he'd seem to fit in with both kinds of music, country and western.

#167 eric e

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 05:47 AM

Seems it's the Kiwi's who want the American money in sailing, and who are the best at getting it,
but if they want to be part of the TV culture to make more money, then they have to play the game according to what the market wants.


now if only someone with vision

hired peter

he could turn sailing into a TV spectacle

with characters, drama and a narrative

that american audiences could relate to without having to work too hard

then all the TV people and advertisers could make lots of money

larry in the yellow underpants

dalton in the black?




#168 Tornado-Cat

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 06:01 AM


That his past two Keynotes at Oracle World have been introduced by theater-shaking AC/DC pounding video soundtracks


How appropriate, shit dated music to go with the shit dated software.

How can ya say that, too old too appreciate, or too young to knaw ?



#169 onimod

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 07:53 AM

So they're trying to attract young viewers and yet the soundtracks are Bruce Springsteen and Acca Dacca?

I think kids these days are much less afraid of old music than my generation was, but it does seem contradictory to talk about the Facebook generation and then play mainstream Flintstones music.


Okay, it may not be AC/DC but it typically is high-energy, matching the overall OW conference atmosphere.

At one of them I went to, one of the three headliner bands Wednesday night was a girl band named AC/DShe, and actually very good. JS has said that Back In Black is his favorite song (almost ashamed to admit it, but it's among my favorite rock tunes too), said again in last week's ACD episode.

I guess the larger point is that LE inhabits an up-tempo world, exudes it, revels in it too.

GD? Maybe not but he's hard core in other ways.


Back in Black was release when JS was one year old.

#170 Liquid Assett NZ

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 09:59 AM

I think everyone is underestimating the damage to the AC that was caused with ac33. The legal battles, the lack of teams, the whole integrity of the event has taken a massive knock. It will take a long long time to get over that. I am a sailing nut so will watch it if was in trailer sailors. But a heap of my mates who watched it for years especially the Blake red sock even back to KZ7 day's are all completely been turned off by whole thing. Leaving only the purists left.

My solution would be is to have the cycles closer together like every 2-3 years Max. Because basically Valencia was the last real cup and that seems like an eternity ago.

#171 PeterHuston

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 03:22 PM


Seems it's the Kiwi's who want the American money in sailing, and who are the best at getting it,
but if they want to be part of the TV culture to make more money, then they have to play the game according to what the market wants.


now if only someone with vision

hired peter

he could turn sailing into a TV spectacle

with characters, drama and a narrative

that american audiences could relate to without having to work too hard

then all the TV people and advertisers could make lots of money

larry in the yellow underpants

dalton in the black?




You know the ironic thing Eric, it isn't me that tried to turn the AC into a spectacle. It is a bunch of Kiwi's and Brits, using American technology (Stan) and money (Larry).

And it is largely the Kiwi economy and paid sailors who have gotten the benefit of all this.

All I'm saying is that if it is going to go down this path, then they need to do what the market, in the US, wants. Different markets want different things, one size does not fit all.

I said it before, if I was Dalton, I'd have someone in the US doing more marketing, as I'm sure he can get plenty of people to support the team from RNZYS as ACEA has done precious little to get America to care about the America's Cup.

#172 WetHog

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 04:37 PM

I think everyone is underestimating the damage to the AC that was caused with ac33. The legal battles, the lack of teams, the whole integrity of the event has taken a massive knock. It will take a long long time to get over that. I am a sailing nut so will watch it if was in trailer sailors. But a heap of my mates who watched it for years especially the Blake red sock even back to KZ7 day's are all completely been turned off by whole thing. Leaving only the purists left.

My solution would be is to have the cycles closer together like every 2-3 years Max. Because basically Valencia was the last real cup and that seems like an eternity ago.


The AC33 Court Crap played its part, but the overall state of the global economy has played the largest role in the current state of the AC, IMO. The recently completed edition of the VOR with its low number of teams, and the fact only 1 entry has entered the next edition of the VOR with its OD boat and supposed cheaper costs, seems to back that up.

WetHog :ph34r:

#173 WetHog

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 04:43 PM



Seems it's the Kiwi's who want the American money in sailing, and who are the best at getting it,
but if they want to be part of the TV culture to make more money, then they have to play the game according to what the market wants.


now if only someone with vision

hired peter

he could turn sailing into a TV spectacle

with characters, drama and a narrative

that american audiences could relate to without having to work too hard

then all the TV people and advertisers could make lots of money

larry in the yellow underpants

dalton in the black?




You know the ironic thing Eric, it isn't me that tried to turn the AC into a spectacle. It is a bunch of Kiwi's and Brits, using American technology (Stan) and money (Larry).

And it is largely the Kiwi economy and paid sailors who have gotten the benefit of all this.

All I'm saying is that if it is going to go down this path, then they need to do what the market, in the US, wants. Different markets want different things, one size does not fit all.

I said it before, if I was Dalton, I'd have someone in the US doing more marketing, as I'm sure he can get plenty of people to support the team from RNZYS as ACEA has done precious little to get America to care about the America's Cup.


There is one format I can think of that seems to work just great in attracting TV audiences across the globe that could work nicely for the AC, and thats the Olympics. Or more specifically, Nation vs Nation. I have brought this up time and again and have yet to read any compelling argument against this working for the AC. Will it mean TV ratings for the AC on par with the Olympics? No, but it would definetly give the AC more relevance in parts of the globe like the US and Europe, and last time I checked thats where the big sponsors reside. DC's welcome back to the US after winning the Cup down under is another example of nationality making the AC a big deal, for a time.

Sponsor driven teams have been what the AC has been about for how long? AC31? Why not try something different?

WetHog :ph34r:

#174 ~Stingray~

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 05:02 PM

.. Nation vs Nation. I have brought this up time and again and have yet to read any compelling argument against this working for the AC.
.. Why not try something different?
WetHog :ph34r:/>

Other thread but: Looks like others want to take bold steps in that direction too
http://americanyouthsailingforce.com/

With at least two AC45 boatloads, meaning at least 12 guys, and possibly 3 teams/18 fresh guys if another USA team can place top-four in Feb, there's potentially a good amount of young, healthy, very well-trained USA talent to consider hiring for an AC35 campaign.

#175 dogwatch

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 05:22 AM

I've now read the PH piece in full. What a very strange thing it is. It opens:

"Arguably the ACWS.....has been the most successful racing that professional sailing has seen."

Compared to the Volvo? To the Vendee Globe? To AC32 (amongst others)? Has he entirely lost his marbles? By what possible measure could the ACWS be considered "the most successful racing that professional sailing has seen"?

He also claims ETNZ has publicly discounted multihulls in AC35 should they win. This seems to be a plain lie. If there has been such a public statement, nobody here can point to it.

What is more interesting is that he says LE has offered ACWS to the teams as an entity to manage. PC's complaint seems to be that ETNZ is declining this gift. Presumably that is because they don't want to be responsible for kicking $10Ms into this loss-making circus. Presumably LE would also like to be rid of PC and RC's WSL if only he can exit without looking like he was taken for a ride.

#176 kiwi_jon

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 05:30 AM


.. Nation vs Nation. I have brought this up time and again and have yet to read any compelling argument against this working for the AC.
.. Why not try something different?
WetHog :ph34r:/>

Other thread but: Looks like others want to take bold steps in that direction too
http://americanyouthsailingforce.com/

With at least two AC45 boatloads, meaning at least 12 guys, and possibly 3 teams/18 fresh guys if another USA team can place top-four in Feb, there's potentially a good amount of young, healthy, very well-trained USA talent to consider hiring for an AC35 campaign.


They too can chase Russian money like the rest of the American sailors in this AC

#177 SimonN

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 05:57 AM

I've now read the PH piece in full. What a very strange thing it is. It opens:

"Arguably the ACWS.....has been the most successful racing that professional sailing has seen."

Compared to the Volvo? To the Vendee Globe? To AC32 (amongst others)? Has he entirely lost his marbles? By what possible measure could the ACWS be considered "the most successful racing that professional sailing has seen"?

I hadn't spotted that. It is even questionable whether the ACWS is the most successful cat sailing we have seen. By many measures, the Extreme 40's have done as well or better. Commercially the E40's are far more successful and as one of the key aims was to develop a finacially sustainable circuit, the ACWS is a long way behind.

#178 atwinda

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 05:52 AM


Based on your analysis the next AC should comprise 150 lasers circumnavigating north and south islands of New Zealand in a series of one day stages. Should be a lot cheaper anyway.


Actually, there use to be a great race like that . . . the Worrell 1000 ....1000 miles in beach cats, in any out of the surf up the US east coast. It was much more of an 'extreme sport' than the ACWS is - as indicated much more like the TdF on the water. I think the last race was in 2002 - seem to remember that the founder got old and they had some sort of problem with the boat supplier.


I think the race carries on as the Tibee 500 or something along those lines, but it has for sure changed formats. My old man and his mates won and set the record in the late 70s before the rules changed to allow stop overs, etc.. Pretty incredible race.

#179 eric e

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 09:56 AM

tybee 500 http://www.tybee500.com/

and also the great texas 300 http://www.gt300.com/

#180 Hastings

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 03:16 PM

I said it before, if I was Dalton, I'd have someone in the US doing more marketing, as I'm sure he can get plenty of people to support the team from RNZYS as ACEA has done precious little to get America to care about the America's Cup.


Err ... you are confused.

Peter Jackson wants to sell Hobbitts to Americans.

But Dalts has a different job.

#181 ~HHN92~

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 06:08 PM


I think everyone is underestimating the damage to the AC that was caused with ac33. The legal battles, the lack of teams, the whole integrity of the event has taken a massive knock. It will take a long long time to get over that. I am a sailing nut so will watch it if was in trailer sailors. But a heap of my mates who watched it for years especially the Blake red sock even back to KZ7 day's are all completely been turned off by whole thing. Leaving only the purists left.

My solution would be is to have the cycles closer together like every 2-3 years Max. Because basically Valencia was the last real cup and that seems like an eternity ago.


The AC33 Court Crap played its part, but the overall state of the global economy has played the largest role in the current state of the AC, IMO. The recently completed edition of the VOR with its low number of teams, and the fact only 1 entry has entered the next edition of the VOR with its OD boat and supposed cheaper costs, seems to back that up.

WetHog :ph34r:


+1

Just look at the French sailing long-term sponsorships drying-up. Who would have ever thunk?

#182 Foyle

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 07:40 PM

I think the ACWS has tremendous potential, but there need to be multiple series - a premier international league and some grass-roots feeder series to build local interest and develop talent (like other sports do).

Those smaller series can then work around smaller cities in multiple countries/regions. Tourist centres love hosting high visiblity sporting events to bump up visitor numbers, particularly in spring and autumn when things otherwise quieten down, and it makes it more accessible to grow the fan base (rather than a couple of events in far flung spots around the world). But it does need to be in the AC45s to retain the credibility and AC linkage. Doing national or regional series also means that a different band/level of sponsors can/will get involved. It would probably also bring many high-net worth individuals into the sport such as currently are involved in motor-racing.

Such AC45 series could be made much cheaper by fitting out an appropriate transporter-ship/barge with maintenance facilities, hospitality and accommodation facilities, umpire boats, media and a storage section that allows the boats to be put away over night without removing their rigs (perhaps stored on their side). It would take a huge amount of cost out of staging the events. Effectively turning it into a self-contained travelling show that moves from port to port, and making the wings less of a liability in cost terms.

Ships and Barges are surprisingly cheap and such an approach could even be extended to larger AC72s and the America's cup itself - could then be a yearly event, wherever in the world it was hosted as all the bases could be moved about on one boat with fewer facilities requiring building every year. That would eliminate a lot of the on-shore costs and would see the boats out on the water racing a lot more of the time to further raise the profile of the AC.

Another boost would be to move over to electric winches, push button dagger board raises, headsail furls etc and eliminate 2-3 crew off of the AC45's - make them a lot cheaper to campaign with a crew of 2-3. Though I can see why they might be retained in the premier series for viewer appeal.




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