At the iShares Cup event, in Hy�res, Marian Martin asked several multihull sailors "What do you think about the America's Cup being contested in multihulls.
Shirley Robertson:
I�ve mixed feeling about it. I�m also a sailing journalist and I love drama and I think the Cup�s always had drama, on and off the water. So, to me, this is another extension of that and it�s a fantastic story. On the other hand, being British I�m rather disappointed, because I think we were in good shape with Origin. I�m a big fan of Sir Keith Mills; I worked with him on 2012 and I really think he would have made a big difference, so I feel really sorry for all those people who were involved in Origin, because now they�re in no mans land and don�t know where to go, or what to do. They were just gaining momentum and there was a bit of good feeling about it in the country.
Also, I�d love it to stay in Europe. I�m not saying that, if Oracle won they would take it to the States, but there�s always that chance and I think it�s better for Britain if it stays in Europe; it would certainly be easier to get sponsorship.
Rob Greenhalgh:
It will be good for the sport and I think it will be a bit of a technical battle. I don’t suppose it will continue in multis, but I’d like to see it in something a bit more exciting than the boats we had last time. I don’t agree with those who say the tactical side will be lost in fast boats. I think the multi match will be more tactical; OK the tactics will be different, but it’s still a case of if you get it right, you get it right.
Whatever happens I think it�s best it stays in Europe.
Herb Dercksen:
Oracle�s got two boats, Alinghi�s got two boats in the iShares Cup, Origin�s got a boat, so for us it was the best thing that ever happened. All of a sudden we got Alinghi in the circuit, which is huge value for us and having Team Origin here as well makes a good platform to attract sponsors; having Sir Keith Mills on the boat, racing in Lugano, really raised the profile of the event. On the other hand, if you think about the sailing side of the America's Cup, it�s made things very difficult; there�s a lot of people out of work, a lot of uncertainty, so people don�t know what to do. One thing we should not forget though, is that the America�s Cup has always been about this sort of stuff. It�s been �How can I win that Cup?� and �How can I outsmart the others?� from whenever the first one was, back in the 1850s, that�s what the challenge was always about. The good thing about this America�s Cup, is that I think there will be big, big opportunities for sponsors, because it will be an America�s Cup that will never be forgotten. Everyone remembers the one in �88, when the catamaran beat the big monohull. Everyone still knows that was Stars and Stripes, with Dennis Conner and everyone remembers the date, but nobody remembers about Fremantle, or Auckland, or Newport. They don�t know the dates and they don�t remember specific boats anymore and that�s why it�s a golden opportunity for sponsors to hook onto this America�s Cup. It�s probably going to be relatively short, but it�s definitely going to be one that will be remembered forever.
As a catamaran sailor, I would love to see the America�s Cup continue to be in multihulls, but I know a little bit about match racing and I think it�s very difficult to go match racing in catamarans. The biggest difference between match racing a catamaran and match racing a monohull is that the range of a monohull is completely different. If you sail a monohull upwind, you can�t gain a lot of percentage by sailing it faster, it doesn�t work. You always go for the same sort of height, sometimes you try to gain a bit, but it�s just marginal stuff; with a catamaran, if you point 3 to 4 degrees lower, you get a big speed increase. That�s why it�s going to be a very difficult thing, which the America�s Cup guys would find out, if they were to have identical boats. You can go very fast and not go too high, or you can go very high and a bit slower, so there�s a big range you can go through.
On the other hand, I think this America�s Cup will be about the design of the boat and I believe that, at the moment, there�s so much still in the air to be decided, like which venue, that the first one to build a boat and come out with it will have a disadvantage. So, it�s a difficult thing, at the moment, to judge who is likely to win. It�s hard to say who I�d like to win; when you have two good customers you�d like them both to win. They are both doing a good job for us, by being involved with the Extreme 40, so I don�t have an preference, but I think for sailing in general it will be good if it stays in Europe. That said, the America�s Cup will go wherever the America�s Cup gets put and, at the end of the day, the people with the money decide where the America�s Cup will go. If Oracle wins, it might go to San Francisco, but they might keep it in Spain; if Alinghi wins I think it will stay in Spain, but you never really know what�s behind the scenes and the politics. For us, as catamaran sailors, it�s great that we have an America�s Cup using multihulls.
Nick Moloney:
I�ve competed in two America�s Cups and I don�t think multihulls are good boats for match racing. Even when we were doing the Faberg� Cup and whatever else, we always felt that - even in the monohulls - the faster boats, the planing boats took a lot of the skill away from the match race. We liked going to Bermuda, for instance, and racing slow boats. It�s sad; multihulls are cool, but they�re not match racing boats.
They need to get back on track, but I�m not sure which of them is most likely to do that. I don�t read any of their news releases, they�re rubbish; if I�m reading something about sailing in general and come to something about the America�s Cup, I just skip over it. They are so far off track; you can only hope they get back into a position where everyone can get on with it. Years ago, the America�s Cup was a sporting event, with very relaxed rules; now it�s business. They need to get back to the spirit there was at the beginning and that�s not business.
Andreas Hagara:
For me it’s exciting, but I’m not sure it’s good for the America’s Cup. The last Cup had more events and we had close match racing and that was really good. This race in big multihulls will be boring; one of the boats will be faster than the other and that will be it.
The only interesting thing is that we are going to see new technology, new ideas and that is good. What could be nice would be more teams in the same sort of multihulls, that might be an idea for the 34th, either that or back to real match racing. I’m not sure it will happen, right now it seems that each one is trying to find the best solution for himself to win the Cup …….. like always.
I hope that, after this Cup, they will sit together and work out the future of the Cup and see that it goes the right way, at least for the next couple of events.
Francis Joyon:
I’ve read something about it and I think … why not? I don’t understand completely what is happening, it seems very complicated, but the idea is very interesting for someone like me who is passionate about multihulls.
I think though that a very big multihull may not be good for this sort of racing. To take IDEC from maximum speed on one tack to the other is 1 or 2 minutes, though it would be faster with a crew, but that is not the real problem. When you have a 60 foot multihull, it turns like this (Francis traces a curve on the ground) and, when you have a 90 foot multihull, it is like this (Francis traces a longer curve). So, I think for this event maybe a smaller multihull could be more efficient; it will circle faster, it will turn faster, so maybe 60 feet can beat 90 feet in the America�s Cup.
In addition to stories in this 33rd America's Cup section, you can read stories from the 32nd America's Cup .
You will also find some older stories and interviews, from the last event, HERE.
Check out what Ed Baird & James Spithill had to say about the DoG match
I'm a big fan of Sir Keith Mills and I think he would have made a big difference.
I don’t agree with those who say the tactical side will be lost in fast boats.
The good thing about this America’s Cup, is that I think there will be big, big opportunities for sponsors.
The first one to build a boat and come out with it will have a disadvantage.�
I’ve competed in two America’s Cups and I don’t think multihulls are good boats for match racing.
The last Cup had more events and we had close match racing and that was really good.
Maybe 60 feet can beat 90 feet in the America’s Cup.
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