Team New Zealand used the phrase “jaw dropping” to describe their new boat for the America’s Cup in 2021.
After seeing a computer simulation of the design, all we can say is that it instantly became much easier for us to stick our feet in our mouths, as the design defies the imagination.
If the Spanish Armada had had these boats in 1588, instead of saying “G’day mate,” we would all be saying “Buenos dias, Seňor.”
As reported previously, the New Zealand team has come up with a foiling monohull that seldom touches the water. At this rate of development, sailing races will soon be conducted with airplanes dragging a line in the water.
A Computer Generated Imagery video of the design, which has been dubbed the AC 75 monohull, shows that true to their word, they have abandoned pedal-driven hydraulics and returned to traditional grinders, but that is about the only thing that seems traditional.
“Wow!” said Tucker Thompson, a man who has become the voice of the America’s Cup over the last two editions in San Francisco and Bermuda but needed just one word to sum up the new look to sport’s oldest contest .
The new design uses three foils, two on the sides amidships and one close to the stern. Depending on sailing conditions, two or three of the foils will be in the water and the boat is designed to be able to foil in winds as light as nine knots. In addition, the boats can foil both with and against the wind.
The move to the monohull design was tipped following the last time the America’s Cup was held in Bermuda, earlier in 2017.
Interestingly, the switch seems to be an intentional desire to return to more traditional methods of sailing and a move away from the catamaran design. Crews will be larger, double in size, and crewmembers will need sailing skills, rather than brute physical abilities.
To us, it is straight out of Star Wars, so we would like to see laser cannons and perhaps some light sabers, a robotic parrot or two and a strict adherence to the Pirates’ Code.