Feb 28, 2011

Aussie Wildcat vid

Every day I receive links and info from catsailors all over the world, I can´t post the 100% of them so I try to select and balance exposure. On board Infusion, on board C2 and now of course on board on one of the first australian Wildcats, by Grant Pellew. Good quality to check the WC trim on flat water.

I'm serioulsy thinking on a good delay on the new F18 project as I'm having good demand on the RC16 plus the F18 local class is running on rails, and invest $ on a Wildcat... or maybe an Infusion MK2, or a C2???


Enough of longboards... Day 1 Highlights from the Quiksilver Pro
Talking about Live feed, check their web coverage too.

X40s: Live webcast is needed...

Following a reader's comment on the subject: With all the big names supporting the event, with thousands of fans waiting to watch the races live, and taking account of the high quality of the recorded teasers... is time for the Extreme Sailing Series organizers to offer Live web coverage of the circuit as the TP52 with the MedCup is doing (best Live coverage available)

AC 34 Rules change: One Wing for all conditions

Last week afer seeing the X40s reefing in +20 knots, the one wing solution came up again. As they couldn´t provide a viable solution the ACRM opted on two differents sized wings. Excerpt from ACup website:
“With teams already working on their ultimate America’s Cup designs of the AC 72, all agreed that one wing size of up to 40-meters (131-feet) could be raced across the wind range. This also allows for more efficient logistics with only wing size rather than two different size rigs. This is a good example of the teams working together to improve efficiencies and reduce costs for all competitors.”

If you are interested on Wing technical talks you need to read SA forums where Clark and others contribute to some really interesting discussions, there I found a excellent inflatable wing solution I once thought of looking at Kites, that was already invented and tested by Dan Kaseler, the current maker of Raptor Sails and also Finian Maynard speed record windsurfing sails.

With this kind of wing you can 'easily' design an inflatable wing top section that can depower the wing deflating that top section. With the rest of the wing being standard construction.

Photo: Darrell Wong

But I also contacted C-Class and Wing guru Steve Clark to learn from people that really knows what they are talking, he doesn ´t like to add weight and complications to his wings and this was his response:

"I have never bought into the notion that you have to remove wing area.
This is simply because the wing, with 0 degrees angle of attack has less
drag than a mast with all the sails lowered. So the key is to be able to
rotate the wing such that it has 0 degrees angle of attack.
On the C Class I believe I can survive until it is blowing so hard that the
boat is literally blown out of the water. We can do this by sailing slowly
upwind with the wing completely un-cambered and the sheet well eased.

Going downwind is a completely different problem and all bets are off. If I
am going to add weight and complication, it would be to make the wing
capable of rotating 360 because that will actually reduce the aerodynamic
drag to the point where survival is more likely than with a wing whose area
has been reduced 25% but which can't be eased all the way."
Steve Clark-

Feb 27, 2011

AC45: Artemis back on the water

After the 1st capsize on the AC45, Artemis was back on the water this weekend with Argentine tornado sailor Santi Lange at the helm, Paul Cayard right behind him in this pic.
Artemis has two of our best talents on their team, with Lange and Juan K as part of the design team.

If you look close (clik to enlarge) you can see the transom add-on joined to the hull that I once posted (right between the '4' & '5') and below some loose rope/block connection too.

Cayard said it was an amazing ride, it makes me wonder what's on the old guard still talking bad vibes on multis when the top mono guys, their idols are enjoying the 'dark side', sadly they are slowly becoming the obscure ones...

Photo: Ivor Wilkins/www.americascup.com

Feb 24, 2011

X40s at Oman: Final Day, Rotschild 1st, Artemis 2nd

Watch out with Terry (quick learner almost grabing 1st place on first try) and the Artemis team for AC34, with a 1st class sailor like Hutchinson, plus Santi Lange and Juan K designing of course they are my bet to beat Oracle. Glenn Ashby and his new protege/alumni, A-Class ace also on 1st attempt, Dean Barker were 4th.
Media release www.extremesailingseries.com
"Final race decider as French team clinch Act 1 victory in Oman It was what has become a classic Extreme Sailing Series™ finish to Act 1 at The Wave, Muscat, Oman. The all-French team of Groupe Edmond de Rothschild clinched victory in the final double points race at the end of an astonishing 32 races over 5 days. “I didn't know what to expect in terms of emotion in the case of victory, I didn't have time to digest it as my crew threw me in the water,” said an emotional Pierre Pennec who was in tears at the finish. “I am very
emotional as it's a lot of work, a lot of personal investment. It's a long time now that I wanted to drive an Extreme 40, and winning ahead of all these champions, it's amazing.”

Terry commented: “It's good to see that all our hard work since the end of 2010 has paid off but there is still much room for us to improve. We're having a little bit of a crew rotation for Act 2 in Qingdao, so there will be
lots of work to do”. Act 2 of the Extreme Sailing Series will be staged between the 15th to 17th April in Qingdao, China, preceded by two openwater racing days.

Dean Barker’s Emirates Team New Zealand had a big comeback in the second half of the Act to finish in 4th place overall, beating Italy’s Luna Rossa by 2 points. Max Sirena’s Luna Rossa team that includes Britain’s
Paul Campbell-James, defending 2010 Extreme Sailing Series skipper, struggled with consistency but seven first places over the five days including a win in the double-points final race ensured they kept the chasing Alinghi team at bay".

Extreme Sailing Series, Act 1 at The Wave, Muscat
Overall Results after 32 races:
Pstn / Team / Skipper/crew / points
1st Groupe Edmond de Rothschild (FRA), Pierre Pennec 253 points
2nd Artemis Racing (SWE), Terry Hutchinson/ 243 points
3rd Red Bull Extreme Sailing (AUT), Roman Hagara239 points
4th Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL), Dean Barker 236 points
5th Luna Rossa (ITA), Max Sirena 234 points
6th Alinghi (SUI), Tanguy Carioiu / Yann Guichard /217 points
7th The Wave, Muscat (OMA), Torvar Mirsky 208 points
8th Oman Air (OMA), Sidney Gavignet 188 points
9th Team Extreme (EUR), Roland Gaebler 143 points
10th Niceforyou (ITA), Alberto Barovier95 points
11th Team GAC Pindar (GBR), Ian Williams 62 points

Feb 23, 2011

Infusion MK2 Onboard Video

Sent by Ferdinand Van West
"A nice warmup movie for the start of the European season.
Testing and training on the new Nacra Infusion MKII F18.
Location: Pataya, Thailand
Thanks to: Nacra Sailing International, Magic Marine, CMI Thailand, Royal Varuna Yacht Club.
The last two years I´ve been sailing together with Hugh Styles, but from now on I will be sailing again under the dutch flag with Pim Nieuwenhuis.
Ferdinand van West Team Boskalis / Nacra"

Hugh Styles and Ferdinand Van West were denied the possiblity of a World Championship at Erquy 2010 by Bundy match racing them on the last race, some argue that it was a bad move, as Styles/Van West were in position to fight with Backes&Jarlegan for 1st place, and Darren could only hope for a 2nd.
But these situations are part of the game and as class president Olivier Bovyn reported they were followed by a race committe boat to enforce rules.
Maybe having Backes match racing Styles/Ferdinand or viceversa would have been a better scenario-
This just to remind how close to the F18 Crown they were, in 2009 the same crew ended 3rd at Knokke.

Feb 22, 2011


More Longboards fitting F18s, now is turn for a customized C2, Sent by James Ogilvie:
"We have finally got together the new boards we have been working on for a few months, these were trialed on a Capricorn at our nationals and we were all happy so Performance Pro are going to start retailing these on the market.

Designed by Martin Fischer, Built by PSA in Sydney. These board can be retrofitted to all F18's with some small modes and will fit a Hobie Wild cat with no modes at all.
We have also produced them to be much stiffer than current skinny boards so weight is on 5kg per board but we believe you will need to drive a car over them before they will break.
Finish in the pics is currently Gelcoat but final production will be Durepox"

RRP per board ex Sydney
$1,250.00 AUD
912.00 Euro
780.00 British Pound

For more details and availability contact James Ogilvie from Performance Pro here-
Dealer for AHPC, Windrush & Landenberger Sails: www.performancepro.com.au

X40s at Oman: Day 2 video

'Remembering' the Tiger

Christophe 'Slater' Mourniac, Franck Citeau, Mischa Heemskerk, Sander de Boer and others, free sailing/surfing at La Torche, already seen by all, but still the best F18 promo video ever published.

Although already a 'classic oldie' for many, in 2010 Mischa won the Canadian F18 Championships with a Tiger, the boat that dominated the class for ten years and contributed as none to the popularity of the F18 Class. When I was building my F18 in 2005, this was the video that kept us going.

Feb 21, 2011

X40s at Muscat, Oman - Day 2

Photo: Lloyd Images
Seeing this photo of the X40 fleet with the ability to reef the main, and after the 1st capsize of the AC45, it makes me wonder how come they couldn´t achieve a good solution to depower the Wing reducing in some way its surface.
Left a Telescopic wing, and below a door with a similar but horizontal system.
The thing is that X40s are way more versatile that the 45s, but of course big wipeouts will be part of the game with 20-30knots in San Francisco and part of the show.
I will contact Mr 'Wing' to see if he ever thought of an alternative solution. Maybe similar to
this? http://www.afaco.com/tele_wing.html
Press release www.extremesailingseries.com
With up to 21 knots the 11-boat fleet raced the first race with a reef in the
mainsail, and it was wet ride on board in a short, choppy sea state. The wind
decreased slightly throughout the afternoon to around 16 knots but the 44
sailors handled the conditions well: “The starts have been very impressive so
far,” said Gilles Chiorri, Events Director. “They are all very close together with
two different strategies – some starting fast on starboard with right of way,
whilst the others opting to find a space on port which them gave the
advantage of one less tack on the first windward leg which saves them about
4 to 5 boat lengths which is a lot as the racing is so close.”

Extreme Sailing Series, Act 1 at The Wave, Muscat, Day 2 Results after 11 races:
1st Groupe Edmond de Rothschild, 101 points
2nd Alinghi, 91 points
3rd The Wave, Muscat, 89 points
4th Red Bull Extreme Sailing, 80 points
5th Artemis Racing, 76 points
6th Oman Air, 74 points
7th Team New Zealand, 64 points
8th Luna Rossa, 62 points
9th Team Extreme, 36 points
10th Niceforyou, 32 points
11th Team GAC Pindar, 21 points

AC45: 1st Capsize - No one hurt.

Testing the strenght of the platform, the hard way. Glad no one was hurt, and the Wing only suffered skin damage. This will be part of the game, and as I said before, Helmet time, more for those experienced sailors, but Catsailing rookies nevertheless. Learning how to manage a racing on the AC45 maybe is not the best idea for sailors with not much hours on Multis. This time it seems that Santi Lange was onboard too, don´t know if at the helm.
The AC45 prototype is safely back at the America’s Cup Race Management base after the boat capsized earlier this afternoon during a testing day on the Hauraki Gulf in Auckland. No one on board was hurt and at first assessment the boat seems to have minimal damage. Most of the damage is to the wing’s non-structural vinyl skin. It is hoped the boat can be back on the water in a few days. - Photos
Ivor Wilkins/www.americascup.com

“After a good session of training this morning with Artemis Racing, we were stopped when we got a little freak puff of breeze, then the boat went over and laid down on the wing,” explained ACRM boat captain Troy Tindill who was on board.

“The chase boat was nearby, so we quickly secured the wing. The main structure of the wing is intact. We got the boat back upright and actually sailed back into the harbor under our own steam. We will be back sailing in couple of days. We will have to get the wing down and assess the damage and look at all the framework but it’s not that bad,” Tindill said.

“The nature of these boats with the solid wing sail is that the wind attaches very quickly to the wing which then powers up very quickly,” explained ACRM CEO Iain Murray. “The wind was just 5-10 degrees off axis and the whole wing powered up very fast and the boat tipped over,” Murray said.

“When the wing hit the water it took some of the elements off the rig. Everybody is fine. There’s not too much damage…. it probably looks worse than it is,” Murray said. “It has been a valuable experience.”

All acknowledged some value from today’s lesson. “We are learning all the time. This is the first capsize and it probably won't be the last,” said Paul Cayard, CEO of Artemis Racing. “One of the lessons learned is in rescuing the boat and maybe we have learned how to do that with less damage next time. It is all part of the learning experience. It is why we built the prototype.”
Photos: Ivor Wilkins/www.americascup.com

Feb 20, 2011

Extreme Series 2011 at Muscat, Oman - Day 1

Photo: Lloyd Images - Alinghi is Back - Here at the Pre event-

Photo: Lloyd Images

Photo: Lloyd Images
Terry Hutchinson is truly a class act. You can´t be that good on monohulls, dominating the TP52 circuit and then make a transparent transition to be at the top on the first day of racing on the 2011 Extreme Series circuit. Quick learner, Santi Lange tought him well in Florida beyond Terry sailing some A-Class too.
Alinghi is quite consistent as always, this time with Yann Guichard at the helm
(French AC34 Energy Challenge) Some are pointing that Energy with the Peyron bros and Guichard maybe funded also by Ernesto Bertarelli, not a crazy idea, if you can directly relate Yann racing with Alinghi, and Loick being part of the same team in last AC.
In fact it could be a silent way to recover the cup for EB, going easy and without exposure behind a french team, if Energy win, Alinghi may return in full form for AC35 on cat too.
Press Release:
Act 1, Day 1: Four-way tie at the top

Day 1 of Act 1 of the 2011 Extreme Sailing Series delivered a class Extreme 40 result – four boats finished on equal points at the top of the leaderboard – The Wave, Muscat, Groupe Edmond de Rothschild, Artemis Racing and Alinghi.

The conditions too were near perfect at The Wave, Muscat with a breeze that was on the positive side of 10-12 knots for most of the afternoon which allowed six ‘open water’ races to be staged off the waters of The Wave, Muscat. The new ‘young gun’ on the circuit, Torvar Mirsky, ensured home team of The Wave, Muscat claimed the top spot with two first places and a second place, getting the defending champions off to the perfect start. “Amazing conditions today, Oman’s got warm weather and a beautiful sea breeze, perfect sailing conditions for these Extreme 40 boats. For us, it was an amazing performance beyond what we expected. I know a lot of people thought we would be up there but I wasn’t so sure. Our team are working really well together – Nick Hutton and Khamis have done a really good job to get myself and Kyle Langford up to speed on these boats and we’re all working well together.” But always waiting to pounce was Pierre Pennec, the new skipper of Groupe Edmond de Rothschild, who showed his mettle today as his all-French crew stepped up to the mark.

Terry Hutchinson’s Artemis Racing crew, who demonstrated their strong form in yesterday’s practice races, continued in the same vein: “It’s the end of day 1 racing here in Oman and we’ve found ourselves in a four-way tie and I think that just sums up how the racing is, its just close and tight and everyone is battling for every point. It was brilliant, it’s the Extreme 40 delivered to the ‘tee’ today and, I think, from a novice in the multhihull world we are smiling! It was a really good day.”

Alinghi skippered by Tanguy Cariou and with Yann Guichard at the helm who, if you remember, put Groupe Edmond de Rothschild on the podium for the last two years in second place overall is looking forward to the public ‘stadium’ days which start the day after tomorrow: “It’s a good start, we just make 5 practice races in four days, so its good to be at the top of the rankings. It sets us up well for the next day and especially the ‘stadium’ racing when it will be great to have the public and to have some tough and tight races.”

At the other end of the scale, match racing pro Ian Williams new to two hulls had a baptism of fire on Team GAC Pindar – the best result an 8th place. The umpires were kept busy – a clear sign the 11-boat fleet are pushing hard already – handing out multiple penalties to the all-Italian team Niceforyou.

And as the new teams and crew accelerate up the learning curve and their confidence grows, the combat will become even more intense. As the day 1 leader put it: “It couldn’t be closer… There are a lot of really good teams here and a lot of newcomers to the fleet who are really competitive people, and we always knew it was going to be tight and the results show that.”

Extreme Sailing Series, Act 1 at The Wave, Muscat
Day 1 Results after 6 races:
1st The Wave, 49 points
2nd Groupe Edmond de Rothschild, 49 points
3rd Artemis Racing, 49 points
4th Alinghi, 49 points
5th Oman Air, 42 points
6th Red Bull Extreme Sailing, 39 points
7th Luna Rossa, 38 points
8th Team New Zealand, 31 points
9th Niceforyou, 24 points
10th Team Extreme, 17 points
11th Team GAC Pindar, 9 points

Feb 17, 2011

F18 Worlds 2011 at Hungary: Official website online

2010 Worlds at Erquy - Photo by Eric Bellande check more at www.direct-image.fr

2011.f18worlds.com When people ask me about the popularity of the F18 class abroad, I just tell them "The F18 gathers 180 boats per championship" , I think not even Lasers, 29ers or Stars can match that numbers. Right now the F18 is leading the sail racing scene.

The 2011 edition will be held at Lake Balaton, Hungary. and it will be hosted by the Blatonfured Yacht Club (BYC) . F18 World Council member and official int class webmaster Sandor Roka, aka Sanyi, will be leading the organization 2011.f18worlds.com :

"Despite the fact that today there is still a layer of ice covering beautiful Lake Balaton, the Organising Committee of the 2011 F18 Worlds are already hard at work to ensure a fantastic event for sailors and F18 fans alike.

The date of the1st - 9 July 2011 has been set, so don’t forget to mark this in your diaries and let your boss know that you shall not be in the office for the first half of July, at the very least! Needless to say, loved ones and supporters will be here with you as the 2011 World Championships will provide a packed and varied social calendar as well as some great racing.

During the Worlds, the boats shall be parked inside the Balaton Tourist Camping and Bungalows Füred, so you can book your bungalow or campsite just a short distance from your boat. If you would prefer a hotel, there are several located within a short walking distance from the Campsite. Please note that there are a limited number of bungalows available and I would advise early booking as there is expected to be a high demand for these. As July is peak season for the area, early booking is also strongly recommended for hotel accommodation.

Stay tuned, the ice on the lake will be melting soon, and there will be more information published here regularly!"

Sandor Roka
Hungarian Formula 18 Association

Check the official website for updated info at http://2011.f18worlds.com

Oracle Racing, AC33 behind the scenes images

Thanks to Thibault Laudren for reminding me on this one. Again, leave all the legal bs behind and the amount of work BOR and Alinghi did in a few months is just unbelievable, if you analyze that both boats didn´t fall apart while racing, that only was a huge achievement taking account of the limited testing time.

The frontline guys must be really grateful for the technical and logistics crews, working 24x7 to meet some extreme short time frame goals. If making beachcats is sometimes really hard work, can´t imagine the level of stress of these projects...wait, just take a good look to the final part and you'll have a glance of it.
Hat Off to all of them-

Feb 15, 2011

F18: Nacra Infusion MKII


You can search this blog for "Infusion" and you'll find several post prasing this Pete Melvin design, even before I had the chance to sail her. I also post in June 2008 the end of the Tiger reign, and later in the middle of the Wildcat launch frenzy, when it was almost comical how everyone seemed to forget the Inf at that time, but I clearly remarked that the hull design that set a new wave piercing trend, added volume, had many competitive years left.

In fact I had to assure to some locals that no new design was considered, as they were saying that Nacra would launch a new boat.
Now Nacra is launchig the "Infusion MKII" (Mark 2) upgrading only her daggers, as the rudders had since day one the highest aspect ratio of the F18 fleet.

Hull remains untouched (no need, as improving it is almost impossible at this stage of gral catracing development) Upgrading will not make you win like instant magic, but you'll be able to cover the mid range conditions where the long boards are having some performance advantage.

A nice and quick retro fit will be also available for previous boats.
New eva deck and a new sail cut, with more draft and power for sure, and focus on high end quality construction (confirmed by a trusted source) complete the package.

As the F18 designs have reached almost a stagnation point cause all latest hull platforms are quite alike and all have converged in a similiar profile shape and volume distribution, developments are being focused on foils and rigs. The same will occur on the A-Class for some time with post Dna boats.

The only concern I'm having with these new lenghts, is that they are elevating the costs in the class.
But right now the latest F18s (Infusion, Wildcat, C2, Shockwave etc) and even the Wpiercing pioneer, the Capricorn, are playing in an overall leveled field beyond the amount of $ you spend, crew talent is still the key factor and that's the beauty of this class, the Formula 18.

X40s Oman 2011: Onboard Team Extreme training video

Sent by Roland Gaebler
"The first training session in Oman with the Extreme40 is behind us. And it couldn't be better. To have from day one with a large group of Extreme40s (5-7 boats) trained together and sailed many short training races. Most nodes in onshore thermal winds 8 to 16.

Oman Sailing has given us a training course just before the Millennium Resort Mussanah designed and executed the launches. We were able to sail on days 6-8 race with the other teams. Every hour we were on the water, was therefore highly effective. Just as we have imagined. It was perfectly organized.

In addition to the races, we could also adjust with a few teams around the ship and sail trim to learn. With Luna Rossa, Red Bull Racing or Artemis, we have made a few miles fine tuning. But a few speedruns with Ernesto Bertarelli, the owner of Alinghi were there. At times, we've also had some good phases to our speed. But also real dropouts. It takes months to ensure we trim the boat under control. The learning curve is steep but up.
And all who know me from the tornado to know exactly that the day will come when we will be among the top teams in the Extreme Sailing Series. In the Tornado, it took a couple of years, but then came the bang, and since we are sailing consistently very high up. In Extreme40 can run the same way. Everything takes time. And we will take. The team spirit is with us now world class already. And that is ever a good foundation.
We are very grateful to our partners Wirsol Solar, Yingli Solar, Marine Pool PowerOne, OC and go with us into the season. It is not only our partners but for years very good friends with us.

Together, we are now in a new era of sailing. With the most spectacular ships in the exciting global series and in the race with the best sailing teams of the world. This is the beginning of a great sailing project and we invite all of you sailing in to us in the future.

Kind regards,
TeamGaebler www.teamgaebler.de
For more info on the X40s at Oman http://www.extremesailingseries.com

Feb 13, 2011

Martin Fischer's A-Class: Revealed...partially

Martin testing the new daggers and some special lifting rudders on a previous A-Class platform/hulls.
Well finally some light on this new A. I contacted Martin again to get it right:
- Render is from new A-Class hull design from Martin Fischer, to be fully revealed soon, the idea is to participate in 2011 A Worlds in Denmark with 4 of them.

- 2nd Photo: Fischer's Wingmast (sail developed by Alex Udin), being tested on his previous A-Class platform.

- 3rd Photo: Martin testing his new blades on his previous A design (here without the wingmast), Curved daggers and lifting rudders, these unseen ones are not even similar to Landy's or to his 40' Tri that I published last week, In fact he is testing a special lifting blade among other more conventional rudders, and final decision will be taken previous production launch ( European factory)

So we'll have to wait to see the complete new platform with new foils and wingmast (hope they launch the new A with it) all integrated with render hulls above. The A-class is on Fire.

I think hard wings are not viable yet in A-cats due to eventual pitchs, as it was experienced by the destroyed wings at last Moth worlds. But a Wingmast combo is a good compromise solution, don´t know why it wasn´t adopted earlier, as being currently used in the the LandYacht Class 3 for ie.

In Alex Udin's interview last year, I asked him about it, but of course not possible to apply this tech on the F18, the A-Class is a perfect scenario to advance on them though.

If you still don´t know who Martin Fischer is, here you have a must read interview we made in 2010. Always trust designers that spend good time on the water, like Pete Melvin , Fischer is an experienced catsailor, add their professional knowhow and no wonder these two produce some of the finest racing cats in the world:
I heard Juan K telling an audience full of naval design students on a talk about the Volvo Race here in Arg : " Spent less time on the desktop and dedicate more time to sailing" , Juan is an avid Star sailor, but now he´d better put some hours on cats with Santi Lange to design Artemis AC72...!

To contact Martin for a winning design: martin.ncl (at) gmail (dot) com

F18 Argentina: Ocean racing at Mar del Plata

Photo: Matías Capizzano - Cruz Gonzalez Smith & Mariano Heuser

Photo: Matías Capizzano -

Photo: Matías Capizzano -

Photo: Matías Capizzano -

Photo: Matías Capizzano -

Photo: Matías Capizzano -

Photo: Matías Capizzano -
All photos Matías Capizzano www.capizzano.com
Some blue/green waters from Argentina for a change... we are used to our Rio de la Plata brown sediment waters, but some still think is pollution... well here you have some 'clean' F18 sailing images!

Cruz Smith and Mariano Heuser are current F18 Arg champions, and they showed why, dominating the regatta with nine bullets over 14. Championship held in Mar del Plata, an excellent vacation place 400kms from Buenos Aires.
Summer for us is rest time, people travel for holidays with the family or friends so we don´t have much activity as here down south we can sail all year round and the racing season starts in March and ends in December. I stayed in BA with the cat school and closing some RC16 sales.
Some tricky conditions and good waves were a challenge for the guys, as we mainly sail in our open river with totally different conditions, and of course is a pleasure to sail in the ocean too.

2nd place for Segio Mehl on Bundy's C2 and third for Esteban Blando and Julio Saubidet that peaked late with a pair of bullets, 4th Ian Rodger and a new crew, Alejandro Noe, having some good races with the local Capricorn-

But all these were quite behind the leaders, that are literally dominating the scores right now. Cruz had a 23rd at Erquy, so we expect even a better place in Hungary, although entering the top 15 would be a hard task, but if he can achieve that goal with Mariano... well, you'd better get used to their name at international championships.

As you can see on the pics Magic Marine is our choice for 1st quality racing gear. Photos were available at the end of the week so posting now as top notch photographer, Matías Capizzano, was in Chile. (PM: Paren de llorar...)
Full results, 14 races here

Feb 10, 2011

Nacra Championships 2011 & 1st Worlds for the Infusion: June 19-23

Sent by Collin van Vugt--
"The Nacra class organization is very busy organizing the next Nacra championships. You can check it on http://nacrachampionship.com/ . In the next couple of weeks there will be more information on the website about this great event that the Dutch Nacra organization is hosting."
Nacra Class newsletter:
Last year we held the Nacra International Championships on the island off Texel during the Zwitserleven Sailing Week.
The races will begin on Monday June 20 and will take place till Wednesday morning June 22. Thursday, June 23 is a spare day. On Sunday, June 19, the boats will be measured and the opening ceremony will take place. After Wednesday, the sailors can participate at the Texel Dutch Open and the Zwitserleven Round Texel race.
The championship is sailed in three classes:
• Nacra Infusion-(worlds)
• Nacra 20-Carbon (International Championships)
• Nacra Open Class (International Championships)

Among the notable participants will be Coen de Koning, Thijs Visser (World F18 in 2008 and 2009), Americas Cup winner Oracle is expected to most likely to join racing with 2 Nacra 20-Carbon's, Gunnar Larsen (former winner Round Texel and the Nacra Championship winner last year)

We hope to have you on the beach at Texel Paal 17.
The registration has already started on www.nacrachampionship.com
Registration for May 1 provides a great discount. SO GO QUICK TO SUBSCRIBE!!!!!!!!

A-Class News

Flyer F4 is being sailed right now.
The A-Class right now is in 'high mode', lots of new things going on, helping to the growth and promotion of the class worldwide. Felix Egner from Landenberger Sails loft in Europe sent me a pic of Landy's rudder used in the Australian Nats.
Some know by now that Landy was using new rudders at the AUS nationals (pictured left).

He felt the DNA was missing a bit of safety in heavy air downwind so Landy put his wing rudders on.
He was testing them already last season on some races, now they are working as he wanted.They are helping to reduce the nosediving, and with the new downwind trapeze tecnique they keep the bow up in heavy conditions.

Landy at Aus Nats 2011
There is also a big development going on in the rigs of the A too. Softer masts, fuller sails and several new boats to be realesed. Catparts is on a new A project, and in the US the Barracuda from Ben hall is ready.
Felix also told me that a new Scheurer is going to be released soon, first renderings being seen, "this thing will be a weapon, it will have some nice details!"

No updates from Fischer's flying A-Class yet, I've seen the boat almost finished, but Martin was really busy with some trips to France. **Edit: Actually this is a 40' Tri float rudder by Fischer.
More info on Fischer A-Class later.
A known cat builder from Europe is involved in the building process.

Regarding the DNA in 2010 we've seen a lot of pics and reports, but nothing better that an excellent footage from Sailcam.TV- Check their Aus Nats channels for some smooth and performance A-Class sailing.

Wingfox is comming with something new too, and the Flyer F4 proto is already on the water for testing (main photo above)

As Felix says "The 2011 season will be full on with new stuff".

Feb 9, 2011

Americas Cup: The French are Coming

With all the knowhow and passion in France for Multihulls it was not possible to have at least one team representing them in AC34. Now we have two! After Aleph presentation, this is quite an impressive bet by the Peyron brothers with Yacht Club de France and Multiplast (Nr1 builder of big Multis) backing the project.
Read the team list also below, quite a lineup too with Yves Loday and our own F18 legend Christophe Mourniac.
Of course this French team will have an entire fleet of cats for training, including some DNAs A-Class recently acquired, for sure some Wildcats and/or Shockwaves F18 too.
If they can pull this together, Oracle will have a serious contender from the number one multihull country, from beachcats to circumnavigation beasts, no one can match the love, involment and fanaticism for catsailing that the French sailors have. Poster above, original published in their site, needed a little touch... www.energyteam.fr
Allez la France!
ACup mailing news received today
PARIS - (Sent on behalf of Energy Team) - Launched and run by Loïck and Bruno Peyron, this challenge is backed by the prestigious Yacht Club de France. The construction of the first AC72 multihull will begin at the Multiplast yard in Vannes on the 1st September.

Within a month of the official announcement last September that the America’s Cup was to be raced aboard multihulls,the Peyron brothers announced that they wanted to bringFrench know-how together to set up a Challenge to attemptto win the prestigious trophy. That is exactly what they have now achieved.

Energy Team, the new French challenge set up around Bruno and Loïck Peyron, has been officially registered for the 34th America’s Cup since 27th January 2011. It is the sixth Challenger aiming to grab the silver ewer.

Energy Team backed by the Yacht Club de France
Training in 17 multihulls
To train and then to race, Energy Team will have at its disposal an impressive fleet of multihulls of all sizes, with seventeen in all available to them: four Class A boats, four F18s, a D35, an X40, a G-Class (the former Orange II), twoAC45s and two AC72s... plus four "F25s", which are a 1/3 scale model of the AC72s, which will be used for the America's Cup.

The Energy Team base, the nerve centre of the project, will be set up on the Atlantic coast of France. It will include three centres: one in Vannes, the Multiplast yard, which will be the construction and technological development base; one in Lorient, which will be dedicated to the AC72 and G-Class catamarans; and finally one in La Baule, which will both bethe main training centre for the squad and the operations centre for all the work with partners and the media.

Core members of the team
The core members of the Racing Team are already in place and bring together a wealth of experience in four major areas that are vital for performance. The core members so far appointed include the following:

Loïck Peyron, skipper of the AC45 and AC72: 6 times F60 world champion, 8 times F28 Trophy Champion winner,
Bruno Peyron: 8 times world ocean records champion, skipper of the G Class, which will be the ambassador for Energy Team,
Yann Guichard: helmsman with Loïck Peyron : Extreme 40 world number 2, Member of the French Olympic team,
Thierry Fouchier: performance team, the only Frenchman to have won the America’s Cup with BMW Oracle Racing aboard which he was the wing sail trimmer.
Jean-Christophe Mourniac: performance team, member of the French Olympic team, one of the world’s top 5 Tornado and F18 racers over the past ten years.
Yves Loday: coach for young talent. Former member of the French Olympic team, he was Tornado gold medallist in Barcelona in 1992. He will be joining the team to prepare the "Youth America's Cup" that the American Defender islaunching.

Feb 7, 2011

AC45 by Mike Drummond, Oracle Racing Design Director

All Photos: Gilles Martin Raget - www.americascup.com - Mike Drummond is in charge of the Oracle Racing Design team, he has been involved with the AC for more than 20 years, and has worked for three winning teams: New Zealand, Alinghi and BOR ( now Oracle). Last week I wrote that the AC45 was a MM design, and he sent a mail to remark that the AC45 is an in-house design by Oracle Racing. As the Design Team Director Mike has also been involved in the BOR90-USA17 design process, so I took advantage of his contact and fired back some questions. Check Mike's impressive CV at www.oracleracing.com/team
-CSN:How was the transition from being involved in designing succesful monohulls for the past ACs to make arguably the biggest jump ever, going for a 90x90 multihull?
[Mike Drummond] The principles of design are similar for any yacht, but my biggest problem was a lack of practical experience with large multihulls. I listened carefully to people like VPLP, Michel Kermarec, Hervé Devaux and Franck Cammas.

Michel Kermarec was with Oracle Racing in 2003 Cup designing appendages and performance prediction. He is a very experienced sailor (ORMA 60s, Olympics, 470s, Admirals Cup..) and designer. He played a huge part in the performance of 17.

I had two pieces of luck on my side - I started racing A-class in 2003 and had learnt intuitively about the subtleties of multis compared with leaners, although it hadn’t translated into much design work. The other was I visited the 2004 C-Class regatta in Newport and had talked with Steve Clark and Duncan Maclane, with ideas of competing one day.
I was open to the light air performance and load benefits and was confident about designing and building a wing with the people we had, and it wouldn’t take much sailing to get up to speed.

-CSN: Oracle design team was the main responsible of the new modified USA17 platform?
You went from a traditional cruise-racing Tri to an hybrid Cat-Tri combo, eliminating central dagger/rudder. Reducing amas volume (and Wing aside) was a drastic concept change from the original VPLP version, in fact some are calling USA17 a Cat,
All these changes were forced by A5? or it was one of the options the team had in mind?
-[MD]: Early on we figured that Alinghi’s best chance was to find a light air venue and use a narrow cat. This also fitted with their background and the Lake of Geneva multihull culture. The original USA-17 shapes were developed for unknown conditions, so it was an all-round performer and could have raced in 25kn+ and 3m seas. It was obvious that we had to develop or lose.

We had a very good collaboration with VPLP all the way along as well as clever designers in-house. Not having multihull design experience didn’t slow down the hull shape development because the same principles as monos were applied to guide the research, so between VPLP and Manolo we had a pretty good drag decrease with the new amas.

As far as the improvements to 17 go many of our ideas had been tried unsuccessfully in the past - such as no appendages in the centre hull. It took a while to get the confidence that our designs would work. I think a major difference was that we powered the boat up significantly so that the centre hull was flying in 6kn of wind or less. So because we were sailing on one hull all the time the new ama shape was improved; no centre rudder was OK etc. Because we were confident of losing unless the boat was improved, it was easier to call for changes even though we weren’t sure they would work.

Photos: Gilles Martin Raget - www.americascup.com

-CSN: Tracking back the latest multi design from the your team, the mentioned extreme changes on USA17, you could gather huge amount of data being collected by the several monitoring systems the boat had. This valuable data was applied for designing the AC45?
[MD] The crossover of technology was more in using the experience of boat behaviour, structural safety factors, rudder size, wing size and mechanics. And a big point is with the experience of handling 17 we knew the logistics of handling and building wings would be solvable.

-CSN: My guess is also that some A5 feaures/solutions were used too?

[MD] The structure is similar to A5, which in turn was similar to an older 41’ Alinghi cat.

-CSN: Which was the main design goal for the 45?

Full scale testing ground for the AC72 or a 'safer' extreme machine for sailors to gather confidence on wings/cats?
The AC45 was designed for good performance in 7kn, raced in 24, and manage (survive!) in 30kn. We knew it would have a wing, which put an emphasis on being OK in strong wind because the consequences of capsize with a wing is messy. Hence the hulls look bow-up in light airs, but crew weight can be moved forward, and the manoeuvring is very good.
I think once there is some experience in the fleet the racing will be very very good, and the crews will push the boats hard.

Photos: Gilles Martin Raget - www.americascup.com

-CSN: Now Oracle is providing the 45 and is offering the other teams a complete solution and design testing ground, you are sharing most of the knowledge and experience the team has achieved- Aren´t you 'afraid' of being outgamed in the final design by others?
[MD] To get this event up and running we had to do the AC45 to get regattas underway so there was no choice. In terms of design the 72’ will be much more sophisticated, so if we lose it won’t be because of the AC45 technology.

-CSN:The Ac45 hulls seems to be much more balanced than the giant A5 , the videos shows real smooth sailing and recoveries on choppy seas, now the team is pushing the limits and we are seeing some pitchs 'a la' X40s with the boat going vertical. Is possible that the AC72s will need (compared to the AC45) more overall volume to balance the huge power of the Wings?
I don’t know yet! The average boatspeeds will be quite high because the boat is overpowered most of the time, so there is less penalty in a higher volume hull than for cats from 10 years ago.
The experience with USA-17 led us closer to her hull shape than A5.

-CSN: In SF is possible to have the open swells seen in Valencia? or mainly short chop ?[MD] I have only sailed in SF twice and there was a short chop in the harbour, but the course area published recently shows the possibility of racing outside the Gate where there must be swell.

-CSN: Which is the speed, by design, the AC45 is capable to achieve? The guys already peaked 29 knots right?
[MD] Upwind speeds top at about 14kn, tacking through 90deg. Downwind will be 25kn or more in TWS 20. Because the wing is not reef-able top speed might be limited to mid-30s, but as sailing techniques develop, who knows?

-CSN: Can you name the design team involved on the AC45 project?
[MD] We started with exploring a converted X40, but really needed a more robust yacht for the Wing sailing. The conceptual decision took feedback from virtually all the sailing and design teams, and there are more involved with all the detail designs. Key designers are,

Michel Kermarec – appendages, general design
Manolo Ruiz de Elvira – hull
Dirk Kramers – general design, structures
Joseph Ozanne/Mario Caponnetto – wing aero
Scott Ferguson – wing structure
Mike Drummond – general design input

-CSN: The AC45 is the latest expression on cats hulls refinements, that are converging on a similar shape on racing beachcats and now on the bigger AC cats, Wings are providing sail power efficiency, so which is the next step (if any) in multihull design in your opinion?
[MD] Multihulls are very efficient in light – moderate winds, but at high speeds they are limited by their long thin hulls. Hydrofoils or planing hulls are directions to try, but at present they have tradeoffs in righting moment or low speed drag.
I’m sure there will be incremental improvements as a greater number of designers and sailors get into cats, because of general design evolution. Any time a new material arrives that is lighter, there will be a step improvement in performance through hydrofoils or thinner appendages too.

Feb 6, 2011

F18s at Chilean Oceanic Championship

Photo: Matias Capizzano - www.capizzano.com

Photo: Matias Capizzano - www.capizzano.com
The local Chilean F18 fleet is working hard to promote the class. They were invited to the national oceanic championship where the argentine design/built Soto 40s were the highlights in the monohull fleet.
Photos: Johan Keller and Mathias Kramer by Matías Capizzano
Crew Sail R1 R2 R3 R4

New A-Class from CatamaranParts

Some special lines for this new A-Class from Catamaranparts (Saarberg-Klok)
For more info contact them www.catamaranparts.nl
The F18 and the A-Class are producing new designs every year, clearly the two most important performance beachcat classes at the moment. We'll wait for more info on this new A.

Feb 4, 2011

Join us

Photo: Gilles Martin-Raget
Same situation here in Argentina, with a majority of poor slow monos of any kind and the F18s flying by. Easy to guess that young Laser sailor thoughts...

AC34: Yacht Club de France, In

The French are coming...
From www.americascup.com : "This brings the current total to seven confirmed and validated competitors for the 34th America's Cup. The seven include ALEPH Equipe de France, Artemis Racing, Mascalzone Latino, ORACLE RACING, two undisclosed teams, and now the Yacht Club de France team.

There will be an announcement on Wednesday, 9 February, in Paris to reveal details of the challenging team.
"We're pleased to be able to announce that a sixth challenger has been accepted for the 34th America's Cup," said Iain Murray, Regatta Director for the 34th America's Cup and CEO of America's Cup Race Management (ACRM).

"This is the second entry from France, confirming the country's strong interest in sailing and the America's Cup. In addition to a rich heritage in the Cup, France has a strong tradition in multihull design and racing, making this edition of the America's Cup of particular interest."

In fact, France is the only nation to challenge in every multi-challenger edition of the America's Cup, a tradition which started with the inimitable Baron Bich in 1970.
The entry period for the 34th America's Cup runs from 1 November 2010 to 31 March 2011.

The entry process and validation procedures for competitors are set out in the America's Cup Rules and can be found at americascup.com/documents."

Feb 1, 2011

Thomas Coville on Sodebo: Extreme for real

Photo Yvan Zedda/Sodebo

Photo Yvan Zedda/Sodebo
Thomas Coville Solo Circumnavigation ongoing record attempt, 'old' news but worth publishing. Besides knowhow and experience you need full guts and self confidence to drive that Tri alone, these French multi sailors are just nuts. I can only laugh when we complain about conditions on the F18s after seeing things like this.
Check the pitch-recovery sequence at: