Mar 9, 2019

AC36: Sail-World Interview with Terry Hutchinson by Richard Gladwell

Photo copyright Armory Ross & Will Ricketson / American Magic. - Excellent insights provided by Richard Gladwell / Sail-World, a great  QA with Terry Hutchinson on the American Magic foiling mono prototype, aka 'The Mule'. Check portfolio we published on the AM38 past months here.

Gladwell's interview confirms our fears on the no or little error margin for these new AC beasts. They look super fast even without a Wing, which is a major achievement, and also quite stable. But Hutchinson comments confirms what we've seen and reported on the unexpected wipeouts which can result in a lottery of capsize modes. With cats you have a frontal pitch or sideways and stop counting.

These AC mono foilers have a complete repertory of how to go down as they are constantly depending on their oversized mainfoils and a central T rudder which presents a perfect scenario for catastrophic wipeouts. In contrast is clear any Multihull have plenty more options to transition from full foiling to a flat sudden dropdown or foils failure, cavitation , ventilate etc.

Add that they expect to be quite dragy in light conditions and if they heel in flaoting mode they might stay down (??) and they need to be put back in position a la capsized Multi, you wonder which is the benefit of going monohull...?

A short excerpt of Terry Hutchinson's comments below, read the entire interview by Richard Gladwell at Sail-World : sail-world.com/news/215250/Am-Cup-American-Magic-tests-the-limits--Part-2 :

...
“You just have to be very mindful that the rudder elevator cannot come out of the water. It's no more complicated than that. If the elevator breeches, it is all over Rover. She'll just go where she wants to go. Managing the ride height is pretty critical,” he adds.

“Down-speed we have had our biggest snafus - getting off the tow,” he chuckles.

“But quite honestly once the boat is up and going it is at its safest time when you are foiling. You don't feel that vulnerable. There is going to be a lot of technique to learn on how to manoeuvre the boat.

“We are pretty far away from any semblance of a foiling tack or gybe. You can see that there will be heaps to gain in that regard.”

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