Untold: "The Race of the Century" documentary on Netflix

terrafirma

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Except that the person who designed it told his story and also how Bond paid him to keep quiet
From Wikipedia:

Later claims of Dutch design​

In 2009 (i.e., more than two decades after Ben Lexan's death), Dutch naval architect Peter van Oossanen claimed that the winged keel was actually designed by him and his group of Dutch designers, and not Lexcen.[6][7] If true, this would have been reason to disqualify Australia II, since the rules then stated that challenging yachts were to be designed (only) by citizens of the nations they represented.

The controversy arose due to Cup rules allowing designers to use model basins for testing that were not located in the challenging country. Model testing was performed in the Netherlands and Peter van Oossanen and another Dutch engineer, Joop Sloof, performed measurements and analyses related to evaluation of winged keel designs.

The suggestion that the vessel was not designed by Australians has been refuted by both John Bertrand and project manager John Longley.[8][9] Furthermore, it is well established that Lexcen had been experimenting with wing adaptations to the undersurface appendages of boats before, including his 1958 skiffs Taipan and Venom, although in the latter application they were not determined to be effective and not further adopted.

In 1983 Lexcen commented on the design issue: "I have in mind to admit it all to the New York Yacht Club that I really owe the secret of the design to a Greek guy who helped me out and was invaluable. He's been dead for 2000 years. Bloody Archimedes..

Those claims from Peter Van Ooossanen were refuted Sailman. Interesting that this Dutchman would make the claims after Ben Lexcen passed away. How convenient.! So you have been going on an on about the boat being designed OS based on a rumor. Lexcen designed the boat end of story.
 

Curious2

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Except that the person who designed it told his story and also how Bond paid him to keep quiet

He CLAIMED to have designed it, CLAIMED to have told his story, and CLAIMED to have been told to keep quiet. None of those have been confirmed and other people CLAIM the opposite.

If I recall correctly, the only thing we know from publicly verifiable fact is that no one on Holland invented the winglet on a 12 Metre keel, since that concept was published in a national magazine eight or nine years earlier. Therefore we KNOW for a fact that the concept was not Dutch.

Given that we have a bunch of claims by one person, denied by many other people, and that (if I recall correctly) that person also made a claim that is wrong on the public record, the balance of evidence sits pretty firmly in Lexcen's favour.
 

Stingray~

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The resolution the NYYC adopted (later rescinded I think by EB for AC32 Valencia) clarifying the definition of the Deed's 'Constructed In Country' clause to mean Designed and Built in Country was, IMO a fair one.

The situation with the winged keel illustrated the problematic nature of that definition; and it is likely even more problematic in today's world. Plus, that Match was very close regardless, the keel was not the determining factor (the rig likely was) and.... It was a case of the Wind Gods and DC not covering on the last leg that helped AUS triumph. All good!
 
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terrafirma

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The resolution the NYYC adopted (later rescinded I think by EB for AC32 Valencia) clarifying the definition of the Deed's 'Constructed In Country' clause to mean Designed and Built in Country was, IMO a fair one.

The situation with the winged keel illustrated the problematic nature of that definition; and it is likely even more problematic in today's world. Plus, that Match was very close regardless, the keel was not the determining factor (the rig likely was) and.... It was a case of the Wind Gods and DC not covering on the last leg that helped AUS triumph. All good!
The keel defintely contributed to the win with an upwind performance gain and extra drag downwind in the light. The interesting thing was Liberty removed tonnes of ballast before the final race and they were way faster. Australia 11 looked out of the race if not for a wind shift and Conor's inability to cover. The keel if anything created a physcological edge for the Australian team playing on the minds of the NYYC. Bertrand was also a huge factor with his ability to stay calm. If not for the breakages Australia suffered they may have won the race earlier but that's just speculation. Trust a Dutchman to make a claim like that after Ben passed away.
 

terrafirma

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I think this puts the matter to bed IMO..

Documents prove Lexcen was keel master: Longley​

DANIEL EMERSONThe West Australian
Thu, 15 October 2009 11:39AM


WA's America's Cup winning heroes yesterday rounded in criticism of their former friend Peter van Oossanen and his claim that Dutch designers, and not Ben Lexcen, came up with the famed winged keel.
Australia II crew member John Longley recovered documents he donated to the WA Maritime Museum after the 1983 win and used them to rubbish claims by Dr van Oossanen that the keel was a Dutch design.
Dr van Oossanen, who worked with Lexcen at the Netherlands Ship Model Basin where the keel was tested, reopened decades-old wounds on Monday by claiming the Australian hero was not even in the Netherlands at the "eureka moment".

The startling claim is a complete reversal of statements Dr van Oossanen made to an American lawyer following a US protest after the race, when he declared that Lexcen was "the sole designer of Australia II".
Longley produced a letter and a telegram from Lexcen to campaign syndicate director Warren Jones in early 1981 - months before the June tank tests involving the Dutch - which showed Lexcen already had a "breakthrough" idea for the keel.
"I have some novel ideas I would like to try in the keel area, which would be quite revolutionary," he wrote in February 1981.
Three months later, he wrote in a telex that he was "about to take yacht design into (the) space age".
Longley queried why Dr van Oossanen was bringing the matter up now, long after the deaths of Lexcen in 1988 and Jones in 2002.
"The only one who's still alive from that whole process is me. Maybe van Oossanen thought I'd dropped off the perch too," he said.
Speaking from London yesterday, campaign financier Alan Bond labelled Dr van Oossanen's claims as "preposterous" and an insult to Lexcen's memory.
"Ben Lexcen was living at my house before he went to Holland and he had already drawn sketches," he said. Mr Bond said if the Dutch had come up with a design, he would have been billed for it.

"They are not design people. They didn't design yachts in that tank. It is purely a testing centre," he said.
Australia II crew member Skip Lissiman dismissed Dr van Oossanen as "a sad old man" trying to rewrite the history books
"You just have to go to the National Maritime Museum in Sydney and there's an 18ft skiff called Taipan hanging up there which was designed and sailed by Ben Lexcen in the 1960s that had wings on its keel," he said. "I thought (Dr van Oossanen) was a nice guy but I'm having second thoughts."
Fellow WA team member Scott McAllister said: "It's irrelevant that Ben wasn't there at the 'eureka moment', whenever that was, because he would be instructing them what tests to carry out. Ben was the customer, they couldn't go off and do what they wanted to do, they had to do what he told them to do."
 

Curious2

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Connor says in his book "Comeback" that the margin they had at the top of the last run was less than the margin Australia II was quicker down the squares, so covering wouldn't have helped; Aus II would have rolled up to them and over them (or gone through their lee as they had in R1). As Bertrand said somewhere else (and Elvstrom notes decades before) covering isn't always the right thing to do, even in match racing.

If Connor and Bertrand were such bad sailors, their critics would beat them all the time. Their critics don't. I've only sailed with JB once and he didn't strike me as a fool, nor does Hughie or the rest of the afterguards.
 

dogwatch

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The startling claim is a complete reversal of statements Dr van Oossanen made to an American lawyer following a US protest after the race, when he declared that Lexcen was "the sole designer of Australia II".
Longley produced a letter and a telegram from Lexcen to campaign syndicate director Warren Jones in early 1981 - months before the June tank tests involving the Dutch - which showed Lexcen already had a "breakthrough" idea for the keel.
"I have some novel ideas I would like to try in the keel area, which would be quite revolutionary," he wrote in February 1981.

So Lexcen had the original idea. That is evidently important but it doesn't mean his was the only input to the final design. Anyone who has been involved in the development of something complex will recognise that many people typically contribute ideas that form part of the final whole.

Which is another reason why "designed in country" was a self-serving notion of the NYYC, intended to keep the Cup bolted down. "Designed in country" is, rightly, no longer part of the AC and I don't hear calls to bring it back.
 
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dogwatch

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They didn't care about being a laughing stock.
They cared about winning.

They looked under every stone and sued the fuck out of everything they found.
The definitely were not playing sailing nicey nicey.

Being nicey nicey and not wanting to be a laughing stock are two different things entirely.

Earlier I reread the relevant chapter of Fischer's tome. He doesn't directly express an opinion one way or the other. He does describe how, in the lead in to the Cup, the NYYC was subject to attacks in the US press over what were seen as ungracious attacks on AUS. The NYYC wrote an affidavit which would have asserted that the challenger had followed all due prescriptions in design and construction. If Bond had signed it, that would presumably have closed off the issue. He wouldn't sign it and one might ask why not.

Fisher then describes a meeting of nine NYYC officers, all of whom, apparently, believed Lexcen was not the sole designer. Five wanted to refuse to race Aus II. 4 disagreed; Fisher implies they believed that would bring the AC into disrepute. There was, in the end, no vote and the rest is history.
 

Ease the sheet.

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Being nicey nicey and not wanting to be a laughing stock are two different things entirely.

Earlier I reread the relevant chapter of Fischer's tome. He doesn't directly express an opinion one way or the other. He does describe how, in the lead in to the Cup, the NYYC was subject to attacks in the US press over what were seen as ungracious attacks on AUS. The NYYC wrote an affidavit which would have asserted that the challenger had followed all due prescriptions in design and construction. If Bond had signed it, that would presumably have closed off the issue. He wouldn't sign it and one might ask why not.

Fisher then describes a meeting of nine NYYC officers, all of whom, apparently, believed Lexcen was not the sole designer. Five wanted to refuse to race Aus II. 4 disagreed; Fisher implies they believed that would bring the AC into disrepute. There was, in the end, no vote and the rest is history.
I can imagine Bond not signing on principal.


They had to be within the rules. The affidavit was irrelevant.
 

sailman

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He CLAIMED to have designed it, CLAIMED to have told his story, and CLAIMED to have been told to keep quiet. None of those have been confirmed and other people CLAIM the opposite.

If I recall correctly, the only thing we know from publicly verifiable fact is that no one on Holland invented the winglet on a 12 Metre keel, since that concept was published in a national magazine eight or nine years earlier. Therefore we KNOW for a fact that the concept was not Dutch.

Given that we have a bunch of claims by one person, denied by many other people, and that (if I recall correctly) that person also made a claim that is wrong on the public record, the balance of evidence sits pretty firmly in Lexcen's favour.
He didn’t claim anything he proved it in his book.
 


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