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GJW Direct 2024 Dinghy

Cup Spy May 25-26: Brits and Italians have solid days on the Med. The Swiss look to F1.

by Richard Gladwell Sail-World NZ 28 May 2023 04:08 BST 26 May 2023
Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli - LEQ12 - Day 63 - May 26, 2023 - Cagliari © Ivo Rovira / America's Cup

What happened in the Cup - May 25-26, 2023:

  • Luna Rossa sailed from Cagliari.
  • Alinghi Red Bull Racing launched their AC75 on both days, with some photoshooting being undertaken ahead of the F1 round starting in Barcelona in early June.
  • Emirates Team New Zealand tried sailing on Thursday, May 25, but the wind failed to eventuate. Both the LEQ12 and AC40 match raced in a light breeze on Friday May 26, with the AC40OD team getting the better of it at the starts, but losing to the speed of the LEQ12 upwind.
  • INEOS Britannia sailed out of Mallorca.
  • American Magic, last sailed on March 10, and is packing out to make the move to their permanent base in Barcelona.
  • No further news from the Orient Express Team (formerly K-Challenge).

Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli - LEQ12 - Day 63 - May 26, 2023 - Cagliari

From the AC37 Joint Recon Team - Michele Melis:

The Italian LEQ12 rolled out at 9:30 and the mast was quickly stepped for craning the yacht in by 9:50. The usual protocol checks followed and dockout was scheduled at 11:00, later postponed to 12:30 waiting for the seabreeze to fill in on this hot day. While exiting the harbour, some early sights of S-SSE 9-12kn were encountered.

The main M1 was hoisted with the J2 onto which a newly sewn window on its foot has been observed on the previously laid sewing frame.

A light SE swell was present in the Gulf which converged with the chop ramping up quickly over the afternoon. Within the whole sailing day, the LEQ12 was boarded by six crew and only self take offs have been observed.

Similar to routine sailing day, once the yacht was all set, it was up and foiling on portside tack after a smooth self take with a light initial pull by Chase-2. At first, the prototype sailed mostly straight line for testing with a minimal number of maneuvers towards Sarroch before bearing away towards Cagliari again.

On an upwind course, perhaps close reach/hauled, boat speeds of 34-36kn have been recorderd while after the quick bear away, AC37 Joint Recon (RU) chaseboat could keep up with 39-41kn on broad reach.

Once this phase was completed Chase-2 changed course to lay out the usual race course with leeward and windward gates and the LEQ12 began an intensive race practice with the chasecat providing some interference. Chase-1 was observed engaging the prototype within legs and even on both pre-starts practices with time on distance inducing some match race decision making onboard. Within several breaks between foiling stints, the sailors seemed to debrief, Go-Pros have been polished and eventually some technicians dived into a hatch with a cloth and a bucket.

As the call for the end of the training day was made, the prototype lined up with the VIP guest boat for some shooting and came to a spot shortly after. For the day, a total foiling time of 102 out of 230 minutes with 26 tacks, 24 gybes and a number of mark round up maneuvers [Michele Melis AC Recon].

Session Statistics: Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli - LEQ12 - Day 63 - May 26, 2023 - Cagliari

  • Weather: Sunny 24°C
  • Wind Strength 13-16kts
  • Wind Direction: SSE
  • Sea State: Beaufort 4-5
  • Roll out: 0930hrs Dock Out: 1230hrs
  • Dock In: 1600hrs Crane out: 17000hrs
  • Total Tacks: 26 - Fully foiling: 19; Touch & Go: 4; Touch Down: 2
  • Total Gybes: 24 - Fully foiling: 18; Touch & Go: 3; Touch Down: 3

Crew: Francesco Bruni, Marco Gradoni, Jimmy Spithill, Andrea Tesei Umberto Molineris

INEOS Britannia - LEQ12 - Day 53 - May 26, 2023 - Mallorca

Top sailing journalist Justin Chisholm was on the water and made various observations on the British boat:

Light winds on Palma Bay this morning forced an hour's delay to dock out for the British Team.

Their patience was rewarded, however, with a valuable afternoon of data gathering and practice in a solid southerly sea breeze that ramped gradually over the3 afternoon from 6kts to a peak of 16kts.

During rigging in the morning a new GoPro camera was spotted on the mast above the forestay attachment point looking down onto the headsail. The team have been sailing for a few weeks now with GoPros on the spreaders looking down.

After initially attempting to take off in around 6-7kts inshore with the J2-1 the crew – Giles Scott and Ben Cornish helming with Leigh McMillan and Luke Parkinson on flight control and Bleddyn Mon as fifth man/observer on the starboard side – opted for a fast bow tow to the south where the burgeoning thermal breeze was already several knots stronger.

The first flying session lasted just under an hour and saw the now familiar design team-requested exercises – including raising and lowering the starboard foil several times while sailing upwind – as well as some fast straight line sailing and multiple tacks and gybes.

After stopping to change batteries and swap to the J3-2 headsail the crew set off on a second hour-long session, some of which was spent sailing around a windward/leeward practice course (windward mark and leeward gate), as well as some free sailing that included some match race maneuver practice (circles, aggressive bear-aways and. round ups).

A second stop was made to change to the J4-1 headsail before a final 45 minutes session which included more of the same activities. Time was called on the day at 1635 with sails down by 1650 and dock in at 1705. Another sailing day is scheduled for tomorrow (Saturday).

Session Statistics: INEOS Britannia - LEQ12 - Day 53 - May 26, 2023 - Mallorca

  • Weather: Sunny 20-25° C
  • Wind Strength 7-15kts Light-Moderate sea
  • Wind Direction: 160-220°
  • Roll out: 0946hrs Dock Out: 1205hrs
  • Dock In: 1705hrs Crane out: 1730hrs
  • Total Tacks: 32 - Fully foiling: 25; Touch & Go: 3; Touch Down: 4
  • Total Gybes: 33 - Fully foiling: 26; Touch & Go: 4; Touch Down: 3

Crew: Giles Scott, Dylan Fletcher, Luke Parkinson, Leigh McMillan, Bleddyn Mon

Alinghi Red Bull Racing - AC75 - Day 64 - May 25, 2023 - Barcelona

From the AC37 Joint Recon team:

Alinghi Red Bull Racing rolled out their AC75 at 08:30 and craned the yacht in the water without its rigging for a day of in-water testing. Rain was present all day, which kept design and engineering members below deck for the majority of the time.

A short pause in the rain made opportunity for a few members to work on deck, playing with foil cant arm speed.

The rain returned and the yacht was turned round at 14:30 to be craned out. The yacht was held in the air as part of a practice photoshoot, anticipating the Formula 1 in Barcelona next week.

The yacht was then carefully positioned in its cradle, washed and rolled back into the shed.

Alinghi Red Bull Racing - AC75 - Day 65 - May 26, 2023 - Barcelona

From the AC37 Joint Recon team:

Alinghi Red Bull Racing rolled out their AC75 at 06:45, with hopes of catching the morning breeze for a photoshoot with a helicopter, as the week was plagued with unsuitable weather. [S-W: F1 is coming to Barcelona next week - the first week of June - and it looks like the Red Bull relationship with both the F1 and America's Cup team will get plenty of airplay.]

Three batteries were counted being brought onto the Chase Alpha, as the M1-1R mainsail and J1-2R jib were prepared on deck. This jib was last seen on 25th April 2023; no noticeable differences other than the addition of tell tales towards the clew. The team docked out at 09:10, raised the main in the port and towed the yacht to the sailing area, a 2 – 8 NM zone South of the airport, where presumably they were given permission for the helicopter photoshoot.

The yacht was sailed on two long reaches, where, based on tests from the previous day, they could potentially have been working on the foil cant responsiveness. After the long reaches, three tacks were performed followed by a downwind, where the team managed six near perfect and one touch and go gybes, something they have not been able to do consistently on the AC75 in a while.

The helicopter joined in towards the end of the first stint, at which point the recon unit was asked to keep distance from the yacht as the photoshoot was carried out. The shoot continued for another stint, as the wind started to die, and quality of manoeuvres dropping, as the team could not land another fully foiling gybe. The session came to an end just after 11:30, as the team started to bring the sails down.

A struggle ensued with the mainsail, with issues seemingly at the head. Electronics engineer Felipe Sarria jumped on board for a short while until the main was brought down. The yacht was then towed back to base, as a photoshoot on board continued until they docked in at 13:00.

A total of 17 maneuvers were performed (59% Fully Foiling), over a period of almost four hours on the water from dock out to dock in.

Session Statistics: Alinghi Red Bull Racing - AC75 - Day 65 - May 26, 2023 - Barcelona

  • Wind Strength: 8-10ktskts
  • Wind Direction: NE
  • Weather: Sunny 18°C
  • Sea State: Slight
  • Roll out: 0710hrs Dock Out: 0810hrs
  • Dock In: 1300hrs Crane out: 1320hrs
  • Total Tacks: 6; Fully foiling: 3; Touch & Go: 0; Touch Down: 3
  • Total Gybes: 11; Fully foiling: 7; Touch & Go: 2; Touch Down: 2

  • Crew: Maxime Bachelin, Arnaud Psarofaghis, Bryan Mettraux, Nico Rolaz, Yves Detrey, Arthur Cevey, Augustin Maillefer , Barnabé Delarze, Théry Schir

    Alinghi Red Bull Racing - AC75 - Day 64 - May 25, 2023 - Barcelona

    Alinghi Red Bull Racing rolled out their AC75 at 08:30 and craned the yacht in the water without its rigging for a day of in-water testing. Rain was present all day, which kept design and engineering members below deck for the majority of the time.

    A short pause in the rain made opportunity for a few members to work on deck, playing with foil cant arm speed.

    The rain returned and the yacht was turned round at 14:30 to be craned out. The yacht was held in the air as part of a practice photoshoot, anticipating the Formula 1 in Barcelona next week. The yacht was then carefully positioned in its cradle, washed and rolled back into the shed.

    Emirates Team NZ - LEQ12/AC40-3 - Day 26 - May 26, 2023 - Auckland

    From the AC37 Joint Recon Team [Alastair Moore AC-Recon]:

    The LEQ12 was rigged and launched with the longer narrow anhedral foil on the port side.

    After going in the water all the pre sail checks were run through and jibs loaded onto chase boats.

    A two-boat day with the AC-40OD being towed down the harbour with her LEQ12 stablemate in company. At 13.22 both yachts dropped their tows and bent on sails around Rough rock

    At 13.32 both M2 [mainsail] and J2 [jib] on the LEQ12 were set and at 13.47 she was off chase and sailing, firstly in a beat out Rangitoto channel in 6-7 kts of soft NE breeze. After a little beat out into the Gulf she ran back in towards Takapuna where she came to a stop at 14.20 in the area about 3 miles NE of Takapuna boat ramp where the chase boats set up a start line with a 1.5 mile beat to a top gate.

    The first pre start was at 14.43 with them not really coming together till the last 30 seconds where on the gun the AC40 was tight to leeward with pace at the pin forcing the LEQ12 into an early tack. At the first cross the AC40 had a 3-4 boat length advantage. Both yachts stopped now for what looked like a snack break.

    At 15.08 we watched the second pre start drill with the AC40 having port entry. Here The AC40 managed to get the LEQ12 to come off her foils with about 30 seconds to go after a very tight tack and bear away. The AC40 was 15 seconds late but the LEQ 12 was still dead in the water.

    The 3rd and 4th pre start drills went back to back with the 3rd at 15.14 entry and the 4th at 15.20. In the 4th the LEQ12 managed to have a small advantage off the line after reaching over both the AC40 and the committee boat and scalloping through the line to start tight to leeward and ahead of the AC40 forcing her off into a quick tack on the line.

    The 5th 6th and 7th pre starts all did one lap after the start with the Leq12 starting behind but managing to pass the AC40 each time before the first bottom mark.

    In the 8th pre start drill which entered the box at 16.15 with the AC40 having port entry, The AC40 looked to be in control, got the LEQ of her foils and ran away with the race. I scored the starts 1 even, 1 LEQ12 and 6 won by the AC40.

    Try again tomorrow

    Session Statistics - Emirates Team NZ - LEQ12/AC40-3 - Day 26 - May 26, 2023 - Auckland

    • Weather: 18°C Fine
    • Wind Strength: 0-8kts
    • Wind Direction: NE
    • Sea State: Flat
    • Roll out: 1222hrs Dock Out: 1300hrs
    • Dock In: 1705hrs Crane out: 1748hrs
    • Total Tacks: 38 - Fully foiling: 36; Touch & Go: 2; Touch Down: 0
    • Total Gybes: 36 - Fully foiling: 34; Touch & Go: 2; Touch Down: 0

    Crew: (LEQ12) Nathan Outteridge, Peter Burling, Louis Sinclair, Blair Tuke (AC40) Josh Junior, Leo Takahashi, Sam Meech, Marcus Hansen

    Emirates Team NZ - LEQ12 - Day 25 - May 25, 2023 - Auckland

    The LEQ12 was rigged and launched with the longer narrow foil on the Starboard side.

    After going in the water all the pre-sail checks were run through and sails loaded onto chase boats but the wind never came and the day was called off just after 14.30.

    Additional Images:

    This commentary was written and compiled from video, still images and statistical content extracted from the AC37 Joint Recon program and other material available to Sail-World NZ including photo files, and other on the water coverage from the 2010, 2013, 2017 and 2021 America's Cups. Its format is intended to give Sail-World readers a snapshot of all teams' progress on a given day or period.

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