Despite winning the America’s Cup with the radical approach of replacing arm-powered grinders with cyclors, Team New Zealand boss Grant Dalton has announced and confirmed that cyclors will not be a part of the next edition of the race.
The winner of the last edition, the Kiwis have the privilege of setting the rules for when they defend the Cup in their home waters in 2021. Remember, you heard it here first, but as for ourselves, we mainly hope to see the year and our chances of recalling anything from 2017 will be scant, at best.
Dalton had some other tidbits beyond the fact that it appears that cyclors in the America’s Cup will be relegated to the status of a footnote as time advances.
Emirates Team New Zealand will announce their plans for the 36th America’s Cup in the next week or two, which gives you some insight into the seriousness with which the country views sailing competition.
Dalton told Italian newspaper La Stampa, “Grinders are coming back”.
The U.S. imposed some interesting design challenges for the 2017 America’s Cup and cyclors were the Kiwi response to those challenges, playing at least some role in the 7 – 1 demolition of U.S. Team Oracle.
Cyclors replacing grinders led some traditionalists to grumble about the lack of sailors filling traditional roles, such as bowmen and trimmers.
Emirates Team New Zealand also sent a shock wave through the yachting ranks by suggesting that they might abandon the catamaran design that has been the rage in recent Cups for a “high performance monohull,” which to some, meant a foiling monohull, which seemingly defies the laws of physics.
Dalton was coy on that subject, saying, “More details will be released on November 30.”
Design secrecy is one of the hallmarks of America’s Cup, or any high-level yachting race, for that matter, but Dalton was more open in refuting suggestions that a return to a monohull design would cancel that Kiwi design advantage that was so obvious with the catamaran design used in Bermuda.