Americas Cup: whats next?

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Doug Lord, Feb 14, 2010.

  1. CT 249
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    CT 249 Senior Member

    Sorry, maybe I'm hyper-sensitive about such things but the way your posts are written doesn't come across as humourous.

    Sure, maybe we could all harden up - but in that case both "sides" would have to harden up, and the multihullers get pretty damn fired up when monohulls exclude them from a race (despite the fact that just about all sports exclude some equipment from some races), or make a comment about capsizes* or lack of tactics, or even when monohullers don't wave and hoot when they get passed by a multi - that's a comment I came across (yet again) when looking up Brissie-Gladstone history.

    * and no, I'm not saying that multis are dangerous, just that some multihullers arc up quickly when such a claim is made and therefore cannot claim to be thick-skinned.
  2. Gary Baigent
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    Gary Baigent Senior Member

    CT, defensive multihullers, absolutely true ... but then, and you definitely know this, about the time the daggerboard IOR lightweights came out, and the open wing deck cats and tris also appeared here, we poor, pure as the driven snow, just want to enjoy fast sailing, didn't want to upset anyone, young multihull sailors - were truly hated by the dyed in wool monohullers, and the lightweight board boats ... well, the old guard was really spewing over them. They were truly hated. So there was a multihull affinity to the board boat owners ... but what happened to them? - the terrorists, legislated out of existence. And if it would have been possible to do the same to multihulls, that too, would have occurred. And you know the non-ambiance in Australia at that time too. So now multihullers ... we still remember these angry days ... and yes, there is sensitivity - and the best defense sometimes, is to attack.
    Incidentally, I was down at the viaduct this morning watching the really impressive AC45 launch and leave, sailed out of the basin, just beautiful to see.
  3. P Flados
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    P Flados Senior Member

    There is really no reason to assume that multis are the right choice for all future AC races.

    I strongly feel that for the AC to have the prestige it deserves, most AC races should combine really fast boats and really good sailing. This will keep the race exciting and awe inspiring. And yes people do ask "how fast are they" and they do expect fast racing given the cost per boat. Even if many past AC races thave been in boats well below top performance in the past, today's information age exposure makes choosing this kind of racing more obvious and less acceptable.

    Really fast does not mean absolute fastest in one set of conditions. For example, at a venue that is is likely to be too rough for any day sailor to even consider, a medium/large lead keel mono makes sense to even an average observer. It still needs to be a fast mono to avoid the "they are slower that the xxx boats because" and then a litany of limitations that most casual observers would have no chance of understanding.

    On the other hand, the multi choice can get pretty close to pinnacle level performance with a lot less concerns about making excuses as to why millions of dollars have been spent on a boats that can not keep up with a fast beach cat on an average day.

    Choosing a venue known to be windy on occasion was a good thing. Some guts an follow through are now in order with respect to designing the boats so that racing will not have to be called off when the regular dinghy crowd would still be willing to give it a shot. Most sailors respect the open water multis even if they choose a boat with only one hull for their own. The AC boats should strive to deserve no less.
  4. Stephen Ditmore
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    Stephen Ditmore Senior Member

    Then they should require boats to be stronger by having a scantling rule - based on ISO perhaps. Whether mono or multi.
  5. CT 249
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    CT 249 Senior Member

    There were certainly some people who hated multis; however, there are some multi sailors who hate monos, or at the very least keep on making snide remarks about them... we have at least one on this thread. Sure, some mono guys have slagged off multis in their owner's hearing - but multi guys slag off monos in their owner's hearing. There are many posts on this forum about how multis are "better", which is insulting monos.

    Why not stop the abuse, rather than continuing it?

    Looking through my collection of old mags, it's hard to see a real anti-multi theme despite the horrifying loss of life and capsize record in the South Pacific region in the '60s and early '70s; not just Bandersnatch, Australian Maid, a 45-ish Piver with about seven people aboard (a family and three young women), and Nicol's boat, but several others.

    We've totalled the deaths from mag articles providing details, and I think the toll reached 20+ deaths in tris in about a decade... the fig. That's a shocking death record, given the numbers sailing.

    Of course that does not apply to modern multis (although about two fall over each year here) but surely it's reasonable that people got upset over a couple of dozen people karking it while sailing in Oz and NZ? Look at the way people still go on about the '79 Fastnet and '98 Hobart, which were less deadly despite encompassing very large numbers of boats.

    Trying to be objective, it's hard to see evidence of a large-scale attack by an "establishment". For example, Modern Boating magazine gave the owner of Bandersnatch about three feature pages in which to defend multis after the loss of the tri. Multis were not banned by the AYF or NZYF.

    Multi sailors were extremely well represented in important positions in Australian sailing; I think Ken Berkeley, owner of the Piver that was second in the lone multi Hobart, ended up as president of the Australian Yachting Federation. The ad manager of Modern Boating (one of the key guys in a mag) was a multi champ. The publisher of Oz Sailing was a multi sailor. Peter Rysdyk, director of the CYCA I believe, was Piver's former agent. The 1998 Commodore of the CYCA had chartered the Crowther 60 Shotover. Mander in NZ was a multi liker.

    There's also been quite a bit of misinformation put out by multi sailors - for example I think it was here that someone claimed (completely incorrectly) that a racing mono was lost in the same cyclone that claimed two (?) lives on Australian Maid in the Brisbane-Gladstone. If you read (as I'm sure you have) the early Piver books you can see why people got annoyed. Many of his claims were total ********, like the one about going around the southern Ocean on an endless surf. That attitude - and the one that reckons multis should be allowed in mono events although all other types of sporting gear is allowed to run its own races - naturally soured people. It wasn't all the fault of the mono sailors! If I judged multi sailors from comments on here, I'd think they were all a bunch of one-eyed bigoted haters, because that's the way the posts run. That attitude creates its own opposition.

    But what ever went on those days was a long while ago, and attacking modern mono sailors because of what mono sailors did in the '60s is about as logical as me attacking multis because of the deaths in the '60s - which I do not do.

    By the way, the board boat owners were not put of existence. A loophole regarding ALL board boats (from Resolute Salmon and Bay BEa to 1/4s) was closed, that's all. There was a mistake in the IOR.

    The same designs went after the changes to win three world titles (1 ton, 1/2 ton twice), win the Hobart, win the Southern Cross Cup, etc. I hated the rule changes at first (I think 80% of the monos owned by my family would have copped it under the changes) but what we ended up with was a period when both heavy and light boats were competitive and mainstream offshore fleets were enormous - much larger than we've ever seen since.

    From some objective viewpoints, in terms of encouraging the popularity of offshore racing they got it right.
  6. Gary Baigent
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    Gary Baigent Senior Member

    CT, it's a two bladed sword ... because you can guarantee that 95% of multihull sailors started off sailing on monohulls, dinghies or keelboats or both ... so if you actually communicate with "rabid anti-mono" multihullers, I think you'll find they have this history. But if they are obnoxious and abusive (and to be honest I've never met these types) then they're just countering the anti-multi abuse historically aimed their way - best defense/attack.
    On the point of balanced viewpoints in the Australian and New Zealand yachting magazines; we're lucky we've had editors and staff that were open minded. Historically all the nautical magazines have been sympathetic to multihulls ... because, let's face it, they are VERY interesting craft. But it's not the media (thankfully we have no Fox Noise boating equivalents), it's just a few vitriolic, mouthy types that cause the antagonism.
    But anyway, this crap should die out ... because what is happening right now down at the Auckland viaduct, is totally amazing. I defy any hard core monohull sailor who sees the AC45 effortlessly moving, (sailed mostly by monohull sailors too, by the way), to not be more than a little impressed.
  7. CT 249
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    CT 249 Senior Member

    We'll have to differ as to whether the best defence in such things is attack; maybe empathy works better. Certainly an attack that consists of spouting myths (the Tornado class website last year still spouted the myth that cats were banned in NY after Amaryllis and used it as an example of anti-multi mindset) and abuse seems counter-productive to me

    Certainly there ARE abusive multihullers on the net - look at Oldsailor, who can only reply to a post about AC history by repeating the tired old "luddite" chant... And I have good mates who sail multis but unfortunately repeatedly come up with anti-mono lines. The rabid anti-mono guys are a very small proportion but they do exist. There are also rabid anti-multi guys, and some of us try to counter their rants because they don't help anyone.

    The point is that there are vitriolic types on each side and surely the cause of sailing would be better served by mutual respect based on the fact that we have different tastes in our beloved sport. To be honest, I think there are more anti-mono guys than anti-multi guys; for example, look at the SA posters whose tags are all about multi superiority. There are no simiilar tags saying that monos are better.

    I think most mono sailors ARE impressed by multis and have been for years. The idea that mono sailors don't get the pluses of monos seems totally wrong as far as I can see - it's just that for mono sailors the pluses of monos outweigh the (well known and widely admitted) pluses of multis.

    However, the fact that they see the great points in multis doesn't mean that they want to throw monos on the pile and get into multis if they don't suit their tastes and personal situation. For example, I love Tornadoes and we plan to buy another one in the future, but that doesn't mean the monos we are sailing at the moment deserve to be abused or regarded as "yesterday's boats" and that we deserve to be called "luddites" or otherwise slurred merely because at the moment monos suit us better.

    Similarly, many cat sailors are impressed by the way that windsurfers go; for example, Gashby sails a board. However, he still loves cats more. As a windsurfer sailor, that seems perfectly fine and I'm not going to throw crap at Gashby because he loves cats more than he loves boards.

    Most sailors in my family are similar - we all love monos and multis for their different virtues. My brother's cruising cats (big and small) are fantastic for their purpose, for example, but for my local sailing even my wife (who basically started in cats, owned two and did the Tornado worlds) prefers a mono given our circumstances at the moment (time, sailing grounds, tastes, etc).

    It's really not hard to love BOTH types without abusing them. To slag off people just because their own tastes and circumstances and beliefs favour one type or another is surely very bad for multis and the whole sport.
  8. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

  9. oldsailor7
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    oldsailor7 Senior Member

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    CT249, I don't know how you can Slag some of our posters as monohull haters.
    Doug Lord for instance is continuously researching foil stabilised and lifting foil Monohulls.
    Gary Baigent is, at this moment, actually building a very sexy looking foil stabilised Monohull.
    And when you look at it, a modern Trimaran is simply a bouancy stabilised Monohull, not a three hulled Catamaran.
    As a retired aircraft engineer I find the use of dead weight to stabilise any watercraft offends my sense of reason in this day and age.
    Clyde Cessna said it all when he said. " Simplicate and add less weight".
    Pure efficiency, in any discipline always leads the road to progress.
  10. CT 249
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    CT 249 Senior Member

    I wasn't referring to DL, but to those who imply or state that multis are inherently superior and therefore insult those who prefer to use a different type of sporting equipment for an event.

    For some of us, personal reasons make monos more fun and therefore superior as leisure craft. These people include (much of the time) Nigel Irens and Ian Farrier and many people with a vast amount of experience and knowledge in aircraft design, boat design and sailing.

    Either Irens and Farriers are ****** or luddites because they prefer monos in some applications, or monos are NOT inferior craft per se and therefore multis are not superior per se.

    As to progress and efficiency, it seems that's a vast over-simplification depending on how you define "efficiency". A Lotus may be more "efficient" than a VW Kombi campervan but that does not mean that selling a campervan to buy a Lotus is necessarily "progress", if you want to take a load of boards away down the coast and go surfing for the weekend.

    What someone happens to like for leisure use - whether Lotus, '71 Kombi, bicycle with board racks and panniers or Winnabago - is surely their own personal taste and therefore should be respected. Same with the boats they prefer.

    By the way, the last time I saw a Cessna it had lots of heavy, complicated things that the Wright Flyer didn't have, like a cabin, windscreen, large fuel tanks, radio, reliable engine, comfortable seats, wheels, etc. The Blackhawk is rather heavier and more complicated than a B.E. 2, but one would hazard a guess that the Blackhawk is generally considered a superior aircraft. Actually, a dinghy would surely be considered more simple than a beach cat and a simple monohull with ballast rocks in the bilge is surely simpler than an outrigger or an ORMA 60..... So it seems that simpler is not always better.

    Similarly, in leisure it's almost impossible to see that "efficiency" is definable or that it leads to progress. In windsurfing a sinker or Division 2 board is more "efficient" than an original windsurfer but where's the progress in something that's harder to sail, more fragile, limited in use and much more expensive? An International Canoe is more "efficient" than a Laser but that doesn't mean that the Canoe is superior for its purpose, which is creating enjoyment on the water. The early Windsurfers were not normally as quick as a Laser or Moth, but they were hardly inferior when it came to creating fun. The Hobie 16 is not, to many cat sailors, inferior to the F16.

    Personally I find that a 9m racing tri was too fast for the sort of day sailing I like doing around Sydney with non-sailing friends, as well as having inferior accommodation and racing (by my own prefernences, not anyone elses'). An F16 cat is too fast for my local bay. These are simply some of the many reasons that "efficiency" in terms of a fast multi is NOT the optimum for all people.

    Similarly, some AC fans love the feel of a big heavy mono - that's their preference and taste and for your to call them "luddites" and more is replacing respect and understanding with a simple insult.

    What is objectionable is that certain craft are inferior (and the similar claims that others are superior) in creating enjoyment and therefore those who prefer type A are "luddites" or "bigots" that are objectionable.

    By the way, have you ever told Nigel Irens that Romilly and Roxanne and his other monos are inferior to his multis? Did you tell Ian Farrier that he was a "luddite" for preferring dinghies to day cats? I wonder if Eric Tabarly was concerned about your belief that his beloved Fife cutter was inferior to his multis? I somehow think that they are at least up to your standards in knowledge and experience so how can you not admit that in many situations monos and multis are NOT inferior or superior, simply different?
  11. oldsailor7
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    oldsailor7 Senior Member

    CT, you really know how to prevaricate and drag up Red Herrings.
    The title of this topic is the AC, not monos in general.
    I am a sailor, and love any boat which is propelled by sail power.
    I am sure monohull sailors love their boats, and with good reason.
    Here we are talking about the Americas Cup Race.
    When I talk about "Luddites" I am referring to the persons who are wanting the race to be returned to the old fashioned ballasted monohulls.
    Like the old "Luddites" they want things to stay as they were.
    TO LATE.
    As Omar Khyyam said in his ancient Poem-----The moving finger writes-----etc: :
  12. CT 249
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    CT 249 Senior Member

    Hang on, your reference to reducing complexity was apparently an attempt to support your claim that multis are better - so of course it's relevant to whether multis are superior, as you claimed in an earlier post. If you don't want to debate whether light is better, then why start quoting people on that point?

    If we're going to discuss each other's argument styles, then I'd take issue with the fact that you ignore it when you are proven to be incorrect on other points you try to use to make your case, such as the completely incorrect claim that "The whole reason for the AC, from the time of its inception, has been to push the limits---and that means the limits of the technology. America was the pinnacle of sailboat design in its day."

    This is simply factually incorrect. The plain truth is that AC boats were NOT always, or even normally, the pinnacle of sailboat design. As was pointed out (although you ignored it) America herself was beaten by Maria in trial races before leaving NY. America was NOT the fastest yacht in the USA; she was not the pinnacle of performance yacht design. She did NOT push the limits more than Maria.

    You are simply wrong if you say that the AC has always been about pushing the limits of technology. For example;

    * The challenge issued by America applied only to schooners, not to all boats - from the start they restricted the designs that America's backers wanted to race. The original AC race was open to all boats but the America's backers noted that normally their schooner would receive a time allowance from a cutter. The fact that they originally only challenged schooners and were beaten by Maria indicates that America was not, and was not apparently meant to be, as fast as a cutter inshore.

    * As you once again ignored, the fact is that the AC yachts have almost always been restricted in design by rating rules and other matters; the challenger Galatea, for example, was a cruising yacht down to pot plants in the saloon and pets on board and was the owner's home. Unless you think that the Tonnage or L x SA rules didn't restrict the use of technology, or that Galatea's pet monkey, palatial accommodation and leopard skins were leading-edge pieces of yacht racing equipment, you are simply incorrect in your claim that the AC is always about pushing the limits, and no amount of spewing contempt at others will make you right.

    * Scantling rules were introduced in the AC early in the 20th century to make the boats more durable, therefore RESTRICTING the use of available lightweight construction technology.

    * Herreshoff refused Iselin's request to make Reliance a giant version of the Seawanhaka boats that were leading the way in mono design, preferring to take her AWAY from the limits. Even Reliance, often said to be the most radical AC mono, was RESTRICTED in speed by the rating rule used at the time.

    * Herreshoff created the Universal Rule specifically to PREVENT the creation of craft like Reliance that pushed the limits. The intent of the Universal Rule was to RESTRAIN the AC boats from reaching the limits.

    You cannot with any truth say that the AC was always about the limits of technology when design rules were created to RESTRICT the application of that technology.

    * there was not always a great deal of hull shape progress; as has been pointed out in the '30s in two books, the '30s defender "Enterprise" had hull liines almost identical to the 1800s challenger ""Valkyrie" and her near sister "Britannia".

    * As Uffa Fox pointed out, in areas like rig and hull design, the Js were well BEHIND the smaller Metre boats and Square MEtre boats, not to mention dinghies. This is fact and the fact that you ignore such facts does not change them.

    * 12s were heavy, outdated designs and either timber, alloy or simple GRP in a time of carbon hulls and masts. To say that they pushed the limits, compared to contemporary multis like Manureva, Paul Ricard, Apricot etc, is beyond ridiculous.

    Your claim that the AC boats were always pushing the limits of technology is completely incorrect. They were well behind other craft in adopting ultra light displacement, sloop rigs, bermudan rigs, composite plastic construction, single-masted rigs, roachy sails, wing masts, multihulls, planing hulls, cutaway forefeet, bulb keels, fin keels, bendy rigs, genoas, spinnakers and many, many, many other elements of design.

    Therefore, any claim by you that there is a historical precedent for the AC to be sailed in leading-edge boats is factually incorrect. You may think that the AC should be sailed in the fastest possible boats but that is only your personal opinion and it is NOT based on historical fact.

    You are therefore slagging off people simply because they may actually know the history of the AC and know that the truth is that it has NOT traditionally been sailed in boats that "push the limits". The AC has traditionally been sailed in large (mainly) inshore racing monos of the largest type sailed in the UK and USA. People have a right to maintain that tradition, just as (for example) motorbike racers have a right to ensure that motorbike races are not entered by faster, more stable and safer cars and windsurfer racers are allowed to prevent their events being taken over by faster catamarans.

    The fact that leadmines have made the AC into the biggest event in sailing is not a justification for taking it off them and then slagging off those who prefer the AC to remain faithful to its history. The mere fact that an event is a major one does not mean the equipment should be changed to the sort of gear favoured by a minority in the sport - quite the contrary, I'd say. If a leadmine event is huge then it proves that leadmines can create huge events.

    Those who want the AC to be sailed in leadmines are NOT luddites, they are people who want it to be sailed in leadmines for various reasons INCLUDING THE FACT THAT IT IS MORE FAITHFUL TO AC HISTORY. Therefore there is no reason for you to insult them, unless you feel that you are the only person who has a right to any opinion. Like many people who prefer monos in various races and environments, they have a different and reasonable opinion to you, that's all.

    Anyway, enough of this - keep on abusing your fellow sailor if it somehow makes you happy........
  13. oldsailor7
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    oldsailor7 Senior Member

    "Those who want the AC to be sailed in leadmines are NOT luddites, they are people who want it to be sailed in leadmines for various reasons INCLUDING THE FACT THAT IT IS MORE FAITHFUL TO AC HISTORY. Therefore there is no reason for you to insult them unless you feel that you are the only person who has a right to any opinion."

    There are plenty of other people who think the same as I do. :rolleyes:
  14. Tim Judge
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    Tim Judge Tim J

    Boys…Boys hold on now. History is just that, it is history. While I am a mono hull kind of guy, I do appreciate the multihull, and the boys and girls who play in the AC are above my pay grade, so they get to make the call as to what type of rig they are sailing. The issue is, and this was part of the universal rule, was to create even playing field. That is what is needed here for the AC to be successful and accessible to the general public.

    In many engineering school, teams are given the problem to solve, with the same materials and asked to come up with a solution. The ones that win are the teams with the best solutions. NASCAR uses the same approach. Race cars have to stay within a set of design parameters. The NFL shares TV ad revenues to keep all teams competitive regardless of market size of the teams home base. This allows all teams to have equal resources to recruit and sign the best players.

    In order for the AC to be truly competitive it needs to have a set of design parameters, and monetary ceilings on R&D and boat construction. This prevents the best fund raiser or the deepest pockets from always winning and allows for the human component of sailors to play a role in the race. Tactics and sailing skill are part of the AC, not just the fastest boat.

    I also think the AC organizers have a tremendous opportunity to draw the public into sport of sailing by running an AC circuit leading up to the AC, not just in the AC45 boats, but in the Js, 12M and the AC Class. This affords an opportunity to give the public a lesson in AC cup history, and the teams an opportunity to test the skill of their crews.
    1 person likes this.

  15. motorbike
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    motorbike Senior Member

    The enjoyment and thrills in a sporting event come from close competition, understanding the players and their skills and rivalries. A white wash or a drag race is dull viewing, outright speed is irrelevant in sailing as its a snail paced sport compared to motor racing. Those that think it should be similar to F1 probably think watching a road train making laps with 2 lead changes a race is fun stuff. Not for me, I think very little of the multi/mono debate, in the end its close racing thats enjoyable. The wealthy elite that control the AC can and will circle jerk all day long over the rules without consideration of anyone but themselves, they dont give a rats about you or me.

    Sailingwise, Ive only ever sailed a few cats, hobies and B class, very thrilling but too fast and wet for relaxed fun, a friend had a 9m cat for a while and his comments were that you got into deep **** much much faster! I prefer a mono, I love the powered up feeling, the interior space and the pleasure of classic lines when I row away. Thats just me, for those who get off on multi hulls, I think thats great, but a Doug Lord revolution? I doubt it, multis are more expensive to build, keep and if you want a fast one its got to be long and light with spartan accomodations. If speeds your thing then for a few thou and some practice a kite board will outrun most multis, but so what? You cant have a beer, or relax, adrenaline only gets you so far!

    This AC will be lots of fun, there will be carbon splinters and carnage! Where it will take the event will be as interesting as the racing. Bring it on!
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