Monday, May 13, 2024
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HomeRegattaAmerica's CupNYYC American Magic's High-Octane Training Day Interrupted by Debris

NYYC American Magic’s High-Octane Training Day Interrupted by Debris

For NYYC American Magic it was back to business in the AC40s with the relentless two-boat race practice continuing in a beautiful 14-18 knots spring breeze with a messy off-set swell that called for boat-handling of the highest order. Unfortunately, the day was cut short by ‘America’ hitting their rudder on some debris in the water and despite putting a diver down to check the foil and stock, ultimately the wise decision was taken to return back to dock and do a thorough analysis.

Speaking afterwards, Paul Goodison, helmsman for the team commented: “A beautiful day out in Barcelona, the sea-breeze built from this morning, it got better and better and better, unfortunately there’s quite a lot of objects in the water floating around, quite a lot of wood and logs today, which made our day a little bit of a stop/start day.”

© Job Vermeulen/ America’s Cup

And describing the hit onboard ‘America’, Paul added: “We ran into a bunch of stuff, had to stop and check and then again ran into some more stuff later on in the day which inevitably called the day short…we hit something pretty hard on the rudder, and we lost the rudder a couple of times after that moment, so we sent the diver in to have a check to make sure there’s nothing broken and as obviously we hit something pretty hard and the boat was a little bit uncontrollable, we decided to send the boats back home as it was just a safer option…the boats have got to get pulled out and have a good check of the rudder and hopefully we’ve not done anything too serious.”

© Job Vermeulen/ America’s Cup

No sailing planned for NYYC American Magic tomorrow and late in the afternoon Alinghi Red Bull Racing also cancelled tomorrow’s planned session. Sailing will resume later in the week, and we may, it is rumoured, get the first sight of one more of the new AC75s. Exciting times at the Louis Vuitton 37th America’s Cup. (Magnus Wheatley) 

© Job Vermeulen/ America’s Cup

On-Water Recon Report – NYYC American Magic: AC40-8 ‘Magic’ was craned in at 11:10 and AC40-5 ‘America’ craned in at 11:30 with dock-out at 13:00 and ten minutes later they started hoisting their mainsails: MC-4 for America and MC-2 for Magic, paired with J1.5 custom jibs.

A nice breeze of about 8-10 knots TWD 195º was blowing at 13:20, the time at which Magic started sailing. America seemed to have some technical problems. The sea was looking asymmetric to the wind, and it was quite messy, again.

The sailing session progress in the following stints:

Stint 1 (13:20 to 13:55): Magic started sailing upwind, did three tacks and then bore-away downwind. After four gybes, they arrived at a starting line in front of Port Olímpic, rounding one of the marks from downwind to upwind, tacking and sailing back to the port entrance to meet America. Once there, she tacked to starboard and after 300 m bore away into a short downwind and came back to find America, stopped beside her and performed some checks with the coach boat.

Stint 2 (13:55 to 14:50): The wind in this stint was about 10-12 knots TWD 190º. Both AC40s started sailing together in speed test mode on a starboard downwind course. After 2 minutes sailing on the same gybe, America suddenly lost foiling and gybed, it looked like contact with a UFO with the foil or rudder and made her lose the foiling and gybe suddenly. America recovered quick. Magic waited for America and they both sailed together down to the line. From there they split and Magic stayed in the starting area performing pre-start exercises while America did a long upwind (5 tacks) and downwind (6 gybes, 1 of them touchdown) back to the starting area. When arrived at the starting line, they stopped and changed jib to a custom J3. Magic did the same.

Stint 3 (14:50 to 15:30): The wind in this stint was about 14-18 knots TWD 195º. Three pre-starts were completed with Magic entering the box first on port gybe and America after on starboard. The first pre-start was very tight between both boats and it was America who won the start. America started to leeward of Magic and some meters ahead. Magic had to tack and from there they continued in a very nice battle to the top mark with Magic performing 8 tacks and America 7 tacks. When sailing downwind America made it to the start line (bottom gate) in 3 gybes and did a very poor rounding. Magic came in 30 seconds later after a failed gybe (touchdown) but did a brilliant round marking at the bottom. On the second pre-start America lost foiling after a gybe and did not make it to the start. Magic nailed this one. The third pre-start was quite tight, Magic was to leeward of America but America maybe crossed the line 2-3 meters before and that gave her a leading position. They continued sailing until the top mark in a very close battle. When going downwind, America lost the rudder and decided to stop to check what was going on (from the chase boat we could see America not sailing comfortably since they hit the UFO in stint 2). Magic finished the lap with three gybes downwind and a perfect mark rounding. Then after came back sailing close to America and stopped for a battery replacement.

Stint 4 (15:30 to 16:00): The diver from America’s chase boat jumped into the water to check if there was any rudder damage. They also checked the rudder stock which seemed to be okay. According to the Paul Goodison interview, they knew there was some damage on America’s rudder but they didn’t know how bad the damage was. With debris in the sea, they decided to send both boats back to port. Dock-in was complete at 16:20.

As a summary Magic and America foiled for 60 minutes (America) and 95 minutes (Magic). They performed 26 tacks and 19 gybes (America) and 30 tacks and 29 gybes (Magic), 3 pre-starts, 2 upwind-downwind course races and small speed tests together. Jose Piñana AC Recon

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