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Melges 14 2019 Leaderboard

The other AC

by John Curnow, Editor, Sail-World AUS 26 May 23:00 BST
Class Designer - Jim Young - 2019 Harken Young 88 National Championships © Rachel von Zalinski

It was terrific to meet Aaron Young at the recent ASMEX conference on the Gold Coast. He is the grandson of one, Jim Young, who is like 96 now, and so many sailors can remember all the boats they sailed on that were penned by this gifted man. Aaron was kind enough to share a boyhood memory of where Jim had frozen a fish to then carve out a shape he was investigating for a bulb, and then towed it along the shoreline, looking at the wake to assess the disturbance. How cool's that?! Real time CFD without the C...

Anyway, Aaron's certainly got plenty on in his role as Vice Commodore of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, and next year he will become the Commodore. Not only do they have their 150th Anniversary to look forward to in 2021, they also are holding an event called the America's Cup in the very same year. As the club is integral component of the triumvirate that is in charge, they have to have a very broad overview approach to a lot of things.

Whilst everyone sits around and waits to see which, if any, of the three outsiders can pull off the impossible, there are other aspects that could well be further down the line than you might imagine. We are not talking about the imminent launching of ETNZ's first boat, either, even though that will be very cool, for it is touted as being quite radical in its approach.

No, the ones we are interested in here today are more ancillary, if you will. We know Groupe Beneteau have been working with SEAir to develop a foiling passenger craft that has military applications as well. Yet most do not know that these will also be used at the AC. As they are launched an in sea trials, you could say it is reasonably obvious. The tech behind it all was certainly on display in the SEAir 5.5m foiling rib that Standen Marine had at Sanctuary Cove, and it certainly got loads of attention.

One item on the agenda that would be less so is something called the Youth America's Cup. The desire all the way along was to have this event staged in smaller craft of the same family as the still being worked on AC75 beasts. To do so from scratch would be very expensive, and make this exciting and positive regatta somewhat of an outsider, just like the three teams from the big show.

So if you could make it stack up financially, then 20 teams or more could come and race off in a fleet of say eight boats that form the mini me fleet. OK. Sounds good, and then if look at the converted MC38 that American Magic have been so successful with, and dare to dream, then maybe, just maybe we could be onto something here. Only thing is the carbon boats take a bit of time to re-jig, and that is starting to be one precious item.

You know, it all got me to thinking that maybe the little sister, the MC31, might be the right place to start. Cheaper to begin with, will become lighter by virtue of stripped out, and far easier overall (relative term of course) to bring to the light of day. Scaling it down that far will also bring about benefits to the costs of masts, sails, foil arms and so forth. So if not that particular vessel, then at least it should be something similar, think FarEast 28R perhaps. OK. Bring it on I say, and do hope a backer can be found...

Hammo, which is so typically Australian by giving it a nickname, even when it might be longer than the original by adding vowels and/or consonants, is rapidly approaching. As it looks set to have a bumper fleet, many might still be looking for race and/or shore crew accommodation. This is where Whitsunday Holidays can help. The one that caught my eye the most was Poinciana 003, which is usually the first to go, but is now available once more due to cancellation. It is walking distance to the marina. There is even a four-bedroom house with pool and billiard room, so if you need to sort out a home, then check it out here or call them on 1300 653 997 and for international guests, call their mobile on +61 434 004 029.

Tacking! Like many, I just love a go-fast boat, and here's one for the brave of heart, and the deep of pocket. She's a Volvo 70 that has fallen into bad times, and now lies on a swing mooring off Palm Beach in Pittwater NSW, with the law 'auctioning' her off by silent tender. The donk is out, the wiring is shod, but she does have a Hall Spars rig in her. That's the brave part. If you have the people at hand, there is even enough time to get her up to speed for the impending Hobart. That'd be the deep pockets component of the original statement. Rowell Marine in conjunction with Flagstaff will hold a couple of open days when she'll be towed to the quay for inspections, before the offers close on June 27. Start your adventure here.

Continuing on with our recent theme of the goings on at club level, a little while ago the Royal Brighton Yacht Club won the Commodore's Cup. It is held in a One Design fleet, and as you can see, the victors were certainly chuffed. Of course, the really important item to focus on here is youth in sailing, and for that reason alone, we love the outcome.

Adrian Finglas, the club's Head Coach, referred to it as the Melbourne America's Cup, and they were certainly very thrilled to beat all rivals, especially those from the host, Sandringham Yacht Club. "RBYC dominated the Commodore's Cup, blowing away all the other clubs on the water with an incredible win. Our team sailed very well, and represented RBYC at the awards afterwards by looking very sharp. Thanks to all involved."

Right oh - here today there are some gems for you to review, like 52 Super Series, GC32, Superyachts in the magnificent isle of Antigua, Lasers in Europe and there are some good little videos from AST Coach Michael Blackburn with winner Matt Wearn and seventh placegetter in the Radial Mara Stransky, Gitana get the tri back in the water, Marine Auctions have an online event on now, Macif is also back sailing, Pantaenius Sail and Motor Yacht Insurance describe in detail all the changes in the landscape as pertains to your cover, the Clipper, SailGP in NYC, The Ocean Race, RS on Paris and beyond, Golden Globe, 470s, the 'Quicks' (Olympic Skiff and Multihull Classes) have their Euro Championship, and certainly there is much, much more.

Remember, if your class or association is generating material, make sure we help you spread your word, and you can do that by emailing us. Should you have been forwarded this email by a friend, and want to get your very own copy in your inbox moving forward, then simply follow the instructions on our newsletter page, where you can also register for different editions.

Finally, keep a weather eye on Sail-World. We are here to bring you the whole story from all over the world...

John Curnow
Editor, Sail-World AUS

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