Americas Cup

Bob Perry

Super Anarchist
31,942
1,333
So majestic to watch those boats round the weather mark and rise up on their foils and take off. I'd really like to experience what that feels like.

Maybe I'll stick my head out the car window in the rain tonight when I drive to Everett.

 

hobot

Super Anarchist
What an impossible comeback. I've been on the edge of my seat. The boat speeds are sick and the competition is legendary despite the restrictive rules. Hats off to L.E., the city of San Francisco and the GGYC. Not sure why it's still called the Americas Cup...
The Cup is named after the schooner "America" which first won the Cup in 1851. It is not named after any country.
At the end of race 2 yesterday, wasn't that a replica with the ginormous American flag flying from it?

 

Hike Bitches!

Super Anarchist
7,362
156
Solomons, MD
hobot...yes..I am pretty sure that is a replica of "America"...she had a pretty big flag(s) up today too.

Good job Spithill & team. Maybe they can think about a 50% nationality rule or something next time.

I really loved watching the boats, but the politics are a giant PITA.

 

Ajax

Super Anarchist
14,822
3,093
Edgewater, MD
hobot...yes..I am pretty sure that is a replica of "America"...she had a pretty big flag(s) up today too.

Good job Spithill & team. Maybe they can think about a 50% nationality rule or something next time.

I really loved watching the boats, but the politics are a giant PITA.
This.

 

xFishman

New member
I didn't think I would like it, but I ended up loving it! I do agree with Bob, it would be fantastic to experience the feeling of acceleration and rising up on the foils . For me over all the racing was very entertaining to watch, even my lovely wife was amazed that wind powered boat could move so fast.

 
610
36
I haven't watched much of this series, but did catch a few of the highlights. Maybe on the next cold, drizzly day when there is nothing to do I'll pick a race or two from youtube and watch all the way through. (Suggestions of which race to watch are appreciated).

Like auto racing, I thought it was fun to watch for a bit, but not enough to hold my interest if there was something better to do. Nice boats with good speed, though.

Seems that the speed of the boats made it more attractive to non-sailing viewers, so that might be good for the AC series. Just wish that the pre-series bullshit of haggling over rules and lobbing lawyers and lawsuits to-and-fro would stop for once. That crap soured the AC for me before it even started. I know it's been part of the series since whenever, but it still wears. Maybe next time I'll just avoid following it until the day the finals start, maybe that'll help.

 
This cup has been amazing. I got to watch it in person from the water, and that was even better. Spent a long week on my boat, lurking the sidelines, mixing with the 72's after racing, Plowing through the course when the megayachts were out, oogling the huge boats, and I even got to say 'hello' to the Flyin Hawaiian. The Oracle win means I might get to do it again!

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The boats really are amazing.

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Cruising and the AC mixed just fine for me.

 

SemiSalt

Super Anarchist
7,791
288
WLIS
I haven't watched much of this series, but did catch a few of the highlights. Maybe on the next cold, drizzly day when there is nothing to do I'll pick a race or two from youtube and watch all the way through. (Suggestions of which race to watch are appreciated).

Like auto racing, I thought it was fun to watch for a bit, but not enough to hold my interest if there was something better to do. Nice boats with good speed, though.

Seems that the speed of the boats made it more attractive to non-sailing viewers, so that might be good for the AC series. Just wish that the pre-series bullshit of haggling over rules and lobbing lawyers and lawsuits to-and-fro would stop for once. That crap soured the AC for me before it even started. I know it's been part of the series since whenever, but it still wears. Maybe next time I'll just avoid following it until the day the finals start, maybe that'll help.
To me, the speed is important mostly because of the danger it implies. I don't mean just the risk to life and limb, although that is there, but the danger of breakages or disastrous maneuvers. The boats are sailed with incredible precision, and small slip can ruin your day. There was lots of tactics and lots of lead changes.

 

Thorvald

Member
405
0
Puget Sound
So majestic to watch those boats round the weather mark and rise up on their foils and take off. I'd really like to experience what that feels like.

Maybe I'll stick my head out the car window in the rain tonight when I drive to Everett.
That would be Nirvana! Sailing on the cat, I mean. Sticking my head out the window not so much.

 

boomer

Super Anarchist
16,465
1,423
PNW
Been following the AC prep and racing as well as the AC 45's religiously. I tend to ignore the naysayers, as well as the politics and posturing. The progressive accelerated learning curve the AC crews was simply amazing. AFAIC watching these magnificent sailing machines is about as good as it get's in my book.

Went down earlier this summer and watched in San Francisco and watched on the AC Youtube channel since then.Followed the racing every night on my phone while in Maryland and at the Chesapeake rendezvous. Finally got to watch them on a decent sized screen when I got home yesterday. The folks were watching the races on IB's big screen at the rendezvous, but Mr. and Mrs. IB and myself were barbequing, deep frying, cooking and doing food prep that evening,but did take a few moments to watch a bit of Saturday's races.

 

Bull City

A fine fellow
7,069
2,686
North Carolina
I didn't think I would like it, but I did. Overall, much of the coverage was repetitive, and kind of silly, but the technology used in the actual coverage of the races was really amazing.

I agree with Sailman's "Crazy Larry's Nautical NASCAR" description, and wonder about its relevancy to the sailing and racing that many of us do.

I really have the utmost admiration for the tenacity of the Oracle crew and team.

 

Jose Carumba

Super Anarchist
3,066
0
Pugetopolis
Sure it's a spectacle, but it's a Sailing spectacle. It may not have any relevance to the way each of us individualy sail our boats, but it is a part of the sport and should be enjoyed as such IMO. There may even be some trickle down benefits to all of us in the form of materials, equipment, engineering, and design.

 

TQA

Super Anarchist
1,208
35
Caribbean
Sailing Nascar Hmm Nascar admits to 'adjusting the rules' applicable to different cars to ensure close racing.

At 8 to 1 was there a meeting somewhere and a change made - I wonder .

If I was a KIWI it would be " Say it aint' so Joe "

Still a great media spectacle and it has to have dramatically increased the 'value' of the Americas Cup. I mean of course the media rights to the next one.

Those foiling crosses at closing speeds of 70 - 80 mph. INSANE!

 

Jose Carumba

Super Anarchist
3,066
0
Pugetopolis
OTUSA did have a foil trimming device on the boat which explains how steady she was. Here's a quote from Sail World:

"The following notes are circulating in Auckland media circles, as an explanation for Oracle Team USA's improved foiling performance, as time progressed in the 34th America's Cup.

The notes were dated September 23, 2013, but were received by Sail-World mid-morning today.

This afternoon, an Oracle spokesman said that the team used the same set of foils through the regatta and that the 'special foil adjuster system, was there before the regatta started'.

The matter was taken by Emirates Team NZ to the International Jury on September 3, and a Decision issued on September 6, just one day before the regatta started, was rejected on the basis on being filed outside the allowable time, but added a rider, that had it been issued inside the time limit, but on the basis of what had been heard, the application would have been unlikely to have been upheld.

Emirates Team NZ's Ray Davies said 'their boat is rock steady up wind, that takes us a lot of effort, and we have been trying to it for a long, long time, and yet they master it in just a few days.

It is well recognised that Oracle was having serious foiling stability difficulties at the outset of the regatta and that their performance could not match that of ETNZ.

Half way through the series it was acknowledged that Oracle had fitted an automatic control to their hydrofoil trim, and that this modification was approved by the measurement authorities.

Since this modification Oracle's performance has almost unbelievably improved. This has been 'explained' by skipper Jimmy Spithill as being due to the superhuman efforts of the crew to improve their handling skills. However, in view of the intensive training Oracle were able to do, prior to the regatta, with their highly skilled team partner, it seems unlikely that only now have they discovered the 'magic bullet' they they clearly have. It is much more likely to be the result of the modifications, possibly enabled by their surprising decision to use their lay day card and the subsequent lucky postponements.

It must be remembered that this is the first time that this contest has been sailed by yachts 'flying ' on Hydrofoils and it is probable that new and different criteria should have been applied.

In the aeronautical world it has long been known that the stability of swept wing aircraft can rapidly be lost by uncontrolled yaw leading to a dangerous situation known as 'Dutch Roll'.

A device known as 'Little Herbie' was developed during the commissioning of the Boeing 747 Jumbo Jets over 40 years ago, to over come this tendency. Little Herbies, or 'Stability Augmentation Systems' (SAS) as these are now designated, are equipped with sensors such as Accelerometers and Gyros which can detect and instigate corrections to stability with a speed and accuracy which exceeds the ability of even experienced airline pilots. They are therefore now installed in virtually all swept-wing aircraft.

The 'legality' of this device has been justified and accepted on the basis that it does not actually 'drive' the trim of the foils.....this is still performed by the muscle power of the crew, via hydraulic linkages. That may be so, but the device, using it's sensing and directives, has been described as 'automatic'. This implies that the trim of the foils is determined by what can only be described as 'superhuman' technology. If this technology has ben used to overcome the foiling stability difficulties of Oracle it will have enabled the use of higher speed/lower drag foils which the crew would otherwise be unable to manage. This would give a significant speed advantage during foiling. This has been clearly in evidence since the modification. Improvement in stability and speed has been staggering.

The high speed/low drag foils do have a downside in light conditions where, due to their lesser lifting characteristic, foiling is difficult or impossible. This was also clearly seen in the abandoned Race
13 when ETNZ were only 4 minutes from the finish, with a lead of over 1000metres.

Oracle Team USA have not provided any official comment on the system they used.

While it would seem that the actuator device is legal if it is attached directly to its own power supply, the wider question remain is whether a boat should be raced with a computer, rather than a human, driving a primary control function."


by Sail-World

 

jtsailjt

Member
After having paid NO attention to the last cup (where?/when?/who?) or the lead up to this one, I happened to be in SFO 2 days prior to the beginning of this series and decided to take a walk down to the pier to check things out and from what I saw became interested enough to decide to watch the first race and was surprised to be absolutely spellbound enough so I started scheduling everything else I do so I could be free at 4:00 ET. It's nothing like the sailing I do or even the small amount of racing I've done, but I couldn't take my eyes off it and found myself becoming quite peeved at the commercials that always happened when some drama on the course was unfolding. What a show!!! I'm an airline pilot but can still enjoy and appreciate what the Blue Angels or Thunderbirds do.

The above story about the stability augmentation system being responsible for the dramatic increase in USA's fortunes makes sense because the USA boat went from being noticeably slower than NZ upwind to much faster and I just can't accept that much of that difference was due to the USA crews learning curve being about 5X steeper than the Kiwi's learning curve was or that making a few physical changes to the boat could result in so much difference. On TV they mentioned that USA removed some weight but there's no way the small amount of weight removed could make that big a difference either.

If USA had a stab aug computer fine tuning their foils for them then I find it very disappointing and feel like that's something whiich should have been sorted out prior to the start of the regatta in time for both teams to have one if they so chose. I don't buy the USA argument that it's OK because muscles/grinders provided the power to actually move and tune the foils because using that rationale the next time around we could have nothing but a team of grinders running both a generator to provide electric power and a hydraulic pump to move the control surfaces, with the electricity powering a computer coupled to hydraulic servos powering the movement of the all the control surfaces including the foils, with a skipper/tactician app that would make decisions when to tack, where the best wind is, etc.

I cheered for Spithill/OracleUSA throughout the series but now I feel really bad for all the Kiwi's, especially if they lost due to the USA boat giving fine tuning control of their foils over to a computer.

 

Bull City

A fine fellow
7,069
2,686
North Carolina
Maybe I'm cynical, but Ellison caught on to the fact that the average TV viewer doesn't have a sufficiently long attention span to handle a race lasting much more than 20 minutes, and that the possibility of nasty collisions & capsizes can sell.

 

curm

Anarchist
566
0
I watched many of the qualifying races in Newport with the 40 footers. IMHO they should have used the same "stock" boats in the finals. BTW you can get monohulls up on foils too.

 




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