A Trickle of America’s Cup News Before the Flood

The 36th America’s Cup is less than 90 weeks, or, like, a year and a half away — though, in reality, the hype around the event is about to ramp up. We are starting to get our first headlines and occasional glimpses of the AC75, one of the most ambitious boats ever conceived in the nearly 170-year history of the Cup, and what we’re pretty sure will be the largest fully foiling monohull ever.

“Emirates Team New Zealand and the three heavyweight challengers — Luna Rossa, INEOS Team UK, and American Magic — are all finally set to splash their new AC75s in coming weeks, with the Kiwi boat due to be unveiled early next month,” reported stuff.co.nz yesterday. A few weeks before, American Magic released footage of their shrink-wrapped AC75 crossing a bridge over Narragansett Bay. “The concealed 23 meter [that’s 75.4593-ft] racing yacht was transported from the team’s construction facility in Bristol, Rhode Island, to its sailing operations base in Newport.”

So here we go. We are taking a moment to enjoy the quiet before the storm. There will be viral videos (of the boats actually sailing instead of being schlepped around) of the next-generation AC vessels ripping through harbors around the world.  There will be buzz about early favorites. There will be breakdowns and crashes. There will be controversy. There will be, in keeping with the tradition of the Cup, lawsuits, lawsuits, lawsuits. And then there will be existential debates about where what is by default sailing’s greatest platform is going. One side will say, “Speed isn’t everything, it’s boring to watch; I miss seeing sail changes,” while the other side will say, “This is cool, get with the times.”

And then, before we know it, there will be the Match itself. Will SailGP still be around in two years? Will another team wrestle the Auld Mug away from the Kiwis and conceive of an even more radical boat? These are all valid questions.

We are in no hurry for the answers.

4 Comments

  1. Michael Staudt 3 months ago

    Be very interesting to poll your readers if they see this iteration of the America’s yacht is
    A. A positive step for expanding America’s cup viewer base.
    B. Is the move from multihulls back to monohulls regressive or progressive.
    C. Should the construction of the vessels be limited to environmentally friendly materials.
    D. It is being presented as a national effort. Should design, construction and all crew members be citizens of the country represented, for a minimum of two years, before the vessel is splashed?

    • Ross Angel 3 months ago

      lets start by saying … no question the change back to monohulls brings the Cup back to reality, albeit the most radical exiting mono-hulls ever conceived much less actually on the water competing around a closed course at 40 to 70 knots… those boats have the potential of revolutionizing sailing like never before and in fact revolutionizing the entire concept of what a yacht or boat or commercial vessel his supposed to be … imagine a 400 ft container vessel or tanker traveling between Japan and the West Coast of America at 70 knots with 5 million barrels of light crude or 50,000,000 cubic ft of LNG..traveling to Europe and arriving at a terminal in 30hrs… Americas Cup has set the pace for exponential change in materials and design for 150 yrs and its trickle down to mainstream commerce cannot be measured or truly quantified… instead it is embrace of the advance of human technology to make a better world for everyone by unleashing the infinite capabilities of human ingenuity and free thinking… Remember… China won the last Volvo Ocean Race .. much of it because of their desire to truly compete ….Thnku America …. Thnku Kiwis…let the competition begin … I’ll be there too!!!

    • Tim Henry
      Tim Henry 3 months ago

      Michael — We have polled the crap out of Latitude Nation on nearly all of these topics, including foiling, the TV coverage, monohulls vs. multi and citizenship for teams. (We haven’t tackled the question of environmentally friendly materials, which is certainly interesting). Needless to say, there are endless opinions out there. It seems like a good deal — perhaps the majority — of our readership is a little wary of the foiling generation, and would prefer to see a return to classic yachts.

  2. Matthew F. 3 months ago

    Time to go back to more cost effective monohulls that are innovative but actually sail on the water. Secondly let’s cut the PR stunt by Team NZ and Long Beach Yacht Club to pretend they are building a boat and have a team. It shows how highly unethical Team NZ and the Long Beach Yacht club really are.

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