Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Monohull or Multihull?

The great debate for the next America's Cup - monohull or multihull - just received a reminder for why multihulls are exciting. They capsize. Peter Stoneberg's Formula 40 catamaran Shadow was racing on San Francisco Bay this past weekend when the wind cranked up to 30+ knots and the catamaran capsized a mile north of the Berkeley Pier.

BMW Oracle Racing skipper Jimmy Spithill (AUS) repeatedly said that a capsize of their 90-foot trimaran would have ended their campaign prior to their America’s Cup Match last February. Franck Cammas (FRA), who sailed his 103-foot trimaran Groupama 3 to a new round the world record, notes how he will be more relaxed when he skippers his entry in the 2011-12 Volvo Ocean Race because the VO 70 can’t capsize.

For sports fans, the possibility of disaster is often why we tune in. But when disaster means the elimination of teams, then a sporting event loses some of its meaning. After a capsize, big multihulls just don’t go into the shed at night and come out race ready the next day. And for the America’s Cup, which is seeking to maintain a “made for television” schedule, losing teams during the event - an event that might not have too many teams to begin with - could be a problem.

If BMW Oracle Racing is thinking about multihulls for the 34th America’s Cup, Shadow’s tumble during a nuclear episode on San Francisco Bay just gave them something more to think about. Could this prove to be a strike against multihulls, or a strike against SF Bay? Here is the time schedule that the defender had previously announced:

- Protocol for the 34th America’s Cup will be issued by 31st August
- Design rule released by 30th September
- Notice of Race & Sailing Instructions published by 31st December
- Venue confirmed by 31st December
- Challenge Period open from 1st October - 31st January 2011

Thanks to NorCalSailing.com for details on Shadow.

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5 Comments:

At 6:15 PM, Blogger Richard said...

Seems to me it is not a strike against anything. SF Bay has only similar breeze (and smaller waves) than Freemantle, where the most exciting America's Cup footage ever was filmed. In fact, that we get so much breeze here on The Bay promotes it as a really exciting venue possibility.

 
At 10:17 PM, Blogger Scuttleblog said...

The thought was if BOR was sold on multihulls, they might not go for SF Bay as the winds might be too strong.

Or, if BOR was sold on SF Bay, they might not go for multihulls as the winds might be too strong.

The Extreme 40 series in Europe is the only inshore racing reference we have, and anytime the winds have gotten strong, there have been tumbleweeds on the course.

 
At 12:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

lETS PUT A GREAT BIG STINK MOTOR ON THE CAT AND A CANTING KEEL IF YOU ARE SO WORRIED ABOUT A CAT CAPSIZING IT WILL STILL SMOKE A MONO HULL AND WILL LOOK MORE SPECTACULAR

 
At 12:57 PM, Blogger Scuttleblog said...

Here is a report regarding the Shadow capsize from Latitude 38: http://www.latitude38.com/lectronic/lectronicday.lasso?date=2010-07-28&dayid=459#Story5

 
At 3:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LA-REPv-ReY

 

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