AC45 Training

Our team has been training on our AC45 here in Valencia for a week now. I went out yesterday and joined them onboard in 18-22 knots of wind. It was quite a ride! 27 knots was the top speed of the day and 20-24 knots is normal downwind speed in those conditions.

Our coach, Andrew Palfrey, had set up a course and the crew took the boat through its paces. The level of physical activity onboard is like nothing the America’s Cup has ever seen. The races last 30 minutes and the heart rate for most of the 5 man crew is over 150bpm for that entire period with peaks of 175. They actually wear heart rate monitors so the team’s trainer, Pete Cunningham, can log their physical capabilities and stresses. Recovery from these races will be paramount and the coach boat comes alongside after the session with energy drinks and protein bars. The crew eat “gel” throughout the day.

The crew on the day included Skipper – Terry Hutchinson (USA), Mainsheet trim – Sean Clarkson (NZL), Camber/Trim Kevin Hall (USA), Headsail trim – Morgan Trubovich (NZL), Bow – Julien Cressant (FRA). I was the “6th” man which is the guest. Terry let me steer on the the way back to the harbor which was fun.

I look at all this and wish I was 20 years younger. It looks like so much fun and I love that it is so physical. Growing up, I loved basketball as much as I loved sailing. But I ran out of vertical so stuck with the sailing. In sailing, I always loved the Star on a windy day because it is so physically challenging. It looks to me like catamaran sailing in the America’s Cup is going to bring sailing into the realm of a truly physical sport.

Our training continues through Tuesday, then the boat and its four containers and tender get packed up and trucked to Cascais (Portugal) for the first America’s Cup World Series event from August 6- 14.

Paul

RC44 Cagliari Cup Final

Excellent day for both Katusha and Artemis Racing.

Katusha with scores of 3, 3, 1 tied for best boat on the day with Oracle. So, Katusha moved up to 6th for the regatta.

Artemis Racing had a very good day also with scores of 2, 5, 3 and that moves them up to second place for the event.

The first race was light and tricky in the dying Mistral. Team Aqua had a bad one putting them in a tie with Islas Cannarias for the lead. After 30 minutes of waiting, the Southerly sea breeze filled in and the fleet had two beautiful races in 12-16 knots of wind.

Team Aqua sailed excellently to win that second race while the Spanish were deep. That pretty much sealed the event for Team Aqua.

The next RC44 event in Marstand Sweden in mid-August.

For me it is back to Valencia tomorrow to work on our America’s Cup project, after a night in Rome with some good friends.

For complete results go to www.rc44.com

Paul

RC44 Cagliari Cup

Well, the good fortune of Katusha fell a bit today but Artemis Racing held up well with scores of 8, 3, 3 and now lies third in the regatta with 31 points.

The wind dropped considerably from the last two days. This made the racing much tighter. We got three races in before the wind dropped and became unstable enough for

RC44 Cagliari Cup

The Mistral was in again today as expected. The race committee announced this morning that they would only attempt two races and that is what we got in. The first races featured 18-23 knots of wind, while the wind came up to 25 knots for the second race and even 28 knots at the finish.

Artemis Racing and Katusha both had good races today demonstrating consistency. Artemis finished 5, 5 and Katusha finished 6, 6. Artemis was in second place for most of the first race but suffered a broach half way down the last run and lost a few places. Artemis Racing’s Chairman, Torbjorn Tornqvist is a good strong wind sailor and had their boat going fast all day. Gennadi is doing a great job on Katusha considering he has been sailing for just over a year now. The conditions in the second race got to the upper edge of controlability and Genaddi never lost control of the boat while many others did.

Actually, it wasn’t just Artemis and Katusha who demonstrated consistency today. All boats in the top six finished in the same position in both of todays races.

TeamAqua won both races today with excellent speed and tactics. ORACLE Racing was just behind with 2, 2. Ceeref followed with 3, 3 and Islas Canarias Puerto Calero had the double 4’s.

Racing continues tomorrow and the Mistral is expected to hold again. Sunday is expected to bring lighter winds.

For complete results go to www.rc44.com

Paul