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  #191  
Old 05-15-2013
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Re: Another America’s Cup entry destroyed

Quote:
Originally Posted by casey1999 View Post
I'll say this.
I have 100% respect and admiration for all the crew sailing those AC72's. I cannot imagine sailing in 30 knots of wind with a 130 foot fixed sail to deal with. I scare myself at times sailing in 30 knots with a double reefed main and reefed jib on my mono.
May God be with them.
Casey, you are not a top professional sail racer. I did not race in sailboats but I raced in motorcycles and I was not even a professional but if a less experienced motorcycle rider (without a lot of race experience) tried to do some things I used to do he would crash with great danger to his life. If I tried to do some of the things professional top riders, sometimes in the same race, were doing it was me that would crash with great risk to my own life.

It is normal that you or me would not be able to race or even sail a Ac72 without endanger ourselves and others.

Regards

Paulo
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  #192  
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Re: racing and risk management:

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Originally Posted by PCP View Post
I have already replied to that:"If on one of the accidents someone more dies then the organization will have a safety problem and probably that will lead to some changes on the boats or in the wind conditions they are fit to race".

Regards

Paulo
Something is just sitting in my stomach poorly. One person dying is not enough to change anything, but two people is. I want to get that, but it really just doesn't sit well.

I think the problem I'm having is it just wasn't totally unexpected that a violent episode could happen on these hulls, therefore, the first should probably be a wake up call. Someone mentioned a death on a Laser. That's more understandably a freak accident, with incredibly low odds.
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  #193  
Old 05-15-2013
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Re: Another America’s Cup entry destroyed

So should we have never launched another the Space Shuttle after Challenger? Should we stop flying in airplanes because 'some have crashed'? I can understand where people are trying to apply logic to an event like this, since, sadly a life was lost; but let's not go overboard. The boat suffered some sort of structural failure; or they pitch-poled, we don't know which yet. All catamarans are subject to a pitch pole, and all racing sailboats are subject to the potential for a structural failure (such as keels falling off and hulls failing due to oil-canning). I'm not saying that mistakes may not have been made, let's find out what they were before everyone starts calling it a NASCAR pile-up attraction.

On a side note, there are fatal accidents on SF Bay during the summer several times per month. Lots of pleasure boats have some sort of failure or another; and there are also the people who go out on kiteboards and can't get back in or just drown. Is anybody putting limits on doing the high risk activity? No; the USCG just goes out to recover them or try and help boats in distress. The local news has stopped reporting on most of these accidents since there are just too frequent.

If you have not witnessed one of the AC72 boats sailing at 40+ kts with both hulls out of the water; you really don't know how amazing these sailboats are, and the skill required to sail them. You can watch it on Youtube but it still does not give the same impression as seeing it with your own eyes. We've watched Oracle 17 sail past us on three occasions and it was amazing to see each time.

The America's Cup (among others) is a race that has always encouraged pushing the envelope of sailboat designs; and has benefited us all by development of those innovations. To say that it should be a one design race or confined to a certain type of boat is a misunderstanding of the history of the event. It's always been about who can build the fastest boat (to a set of design criteria) and sail with the best crews; regardless of cost. Recent rules regarding cost limitations were agreed upon in this AC. Ellison could have spent way more than he is on the current boats (just look back to the last AC; that boat cost over 300M)

Before the cats were sailing everyone was complaining about how slow and fragile the monohulls were; and that they could not be raced in over 12 kts of wind. Now everyone is complaining about the speed and safety of the cats. What do you guys expect? Artemis did not design their first 72' boat to be foiling; so they were in the process of making/testing design changes to help get them up to speed with Oracle 1. In their first practice race Oracle just sailed away from Artemis; so changes were required. I don't know if they modified it to be foiling or if they changed the boat in other ways.

The main issue with safety on these boats is getting trapped beneath the trampoline netting if the boat gets flipped; and on that issue I call question to the use of PFD's that are only going to pin the victim beneath the wreckage. IMO they should be wearing manual inflate devices so that they don't have to deploy it if they are stuck under something (and yes, I know there is the possibility of head injury).
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  #194  
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Re: Another America’s Cup entry destroyed

Quote:
Originally Posted by PCP View Post
Casey, you are not a top professional sail racer. I did not race in sailboats but I raced in motorcycles and I was not even a professional but if a less experienced motorcycle rider (without a lot of race experience) tried to do some things I used to do he would crash with great danger to his life. If I tried to do some of the things professional top riders, sometimes in the same race, were doing it was me that would crash with great risk to my own life.

It is normal that you or me would not be able to race or even sail a Ac72 without endanger ourselves and others.

Regards

Paulo
That is not the point I was trying to make. The point I was trying to make is that these guys and gals are the best and I respect and admire that. They are very brave and have a huge amount of skill and strength. I just hope that are not sailing on "defective" equipment or in conditions the equipment is not capable of.
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  #195  
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Re: racing and risk management:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnewaska View Post
Something is just sitting in my stomach poorly. One person dying is not enough to change anything, but two people is. I want to get that, but it really just doesn't sit well.

I think the problem I'm having is it just wasn't totally unexpected that a violent episode could happen on these hulls, therefore, the first should probably be a wake up call. Someone mentioned a death on a Laser. That's more understandably a freak accident, with incredibly low odds.
A deadly accident does not form a pattern. It can be just bad luck. I have seen many accidents like those on the Artemis (even in multihulls with about the same size) without nobody being killed. It does not mean that they cannot be killed, just that is not probable.

In Moto GP racers cab be killed and sometimes they get killed. That is just not frequent and that makes the risk acceptable. Sailing will not be the same, well it is not the same from some years now. Speeds increased dramatically. If someone goes overboard on a VOR 70 doing over 30K in freezing waters the chances of recovering him alive are very slim. In fact that have already happened with tragic results. That's not a reason to limit sailboat speeds or to race in old slower boats.

Regards

Paulo
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  #196  
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Re: Another America’s Cup entry destroyed

Quote:
Originally Posted by KeelHaulin View Post
The main issue with safety on these boats is getting trapped beneath the trampoline netting if the boat gets flipped; and on that issue I call question to the use of PFD's that are only going to pin the victim beneath the wreckage. IMO they should be wearing manual inflate devices so that they don't have to deploy it if they are stuck under something (and yes, I know there is the possibility of head injury).
There is also the issue of the extreme height you will be at if you do capsize or pitch pole if you are on the "high" side going over.

And with things like Challenger, NASA stopped flights until the design could be reviewed and corrections made.

As it may be considered timid to halt the AC 72's, it could be considered reckless to continue racing until we know why we have had two capsizes and what could be done to correct the problem, if there is a problem.
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  #197  
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Re: Another America’s Cup entry destroyed

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Originally Posted by KeelHaulin View Post
So should we have never launched another the Space Shuttle after Challenger?.......
This is what's killing me about the arguments that they are not out of balance on risk management. This is an exact example of the way to handle the AC, but is presented like we're out of step. No one stopped launching Space Shuttles. They stopped until they improved the safety of them.

It's not expected to be perfect. It's not expected to be the last improvement. No one that I read above is arguing to eliminate risk. They should make them safer than they have and the warning signs are loud and clear and someone died already. That got the shuttle grounded, but they launched many more.
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  #198  
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Re: Another America’s Cup entry destroyed

Remember a race years ago in Fishkill, N.Y. There were whoops then a jump. Guy planted his front wheel after the jump and went down. Next one over landed on him. In any racing activity risk of death exists. As speed and complexity increases so does risk of design/material failure and death. Death/injury mitigation occurs after these events occur. This seems true in all racing endeavors. Can't fault AC for this. Believe guy died wearing an intact helmet, chest plate etc.(best stuff of the time). Could get rid of the jump but then race watered down. See issue of questioning if 72' too extreme. See issue if foiling ,hard sails and control at these speeds has been worked out. Don't see issue with pushing the edge but do see issue with whether it's being done in a thoughtful manner. Amazing to watch these boats but still have trouble relating as it is so alien to what we do.
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  #199  
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Re: Another America’s Cup entry destroyed

From what I have heard on radio and TV today, seems that the good money is on the reason for the accident being dodgy boat design or structural strength and that the Cup will continue as planned.

When I saw the first pictures of the wreckage it was reasonably easy to assume that the boat broke in half and caused the accident rather than the accident causing the boat to break in half.

As I said in an earlier post, we have watched these boats for some time training in Auckland harbor and even in 10 knots of true wind the boats were doing 20 knots of boat speed.

How many others on this board remember watching the last AC when the Oracle trimaran took down the headsail on an upwind beat because the headsail was slowing the boat down. This is counter-intuitive enough for me to understand that nothing about these boats is normal.

I reckon that if safety is to be enhanced it should be through placing a limit to windspeed. If a boat can do double the true windspeed then sailing it in 30 knots plus with a sail that can't dump wind is a little crazy (IMHO). They should cancel all sailing if the true windspeed exceeds , say, 20 knots.

Anyway, I still can't wait for this racing to begin.
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Re: Another America’s Cup entry destroyed

Going back to the last AC when Oracle trounced Bertarelli's cat and remembering how easy it was for Spithill to catch the cat in the start box on a port tack, they are hopefully going to change some rules about the dial-up sequences, etc. Spithill was miles away when Bertarelli tacked to port and with the unbelievable boat speed of the trimaran, he was onto the cat before they could blink.

The fact is that if a boat is caught on a port tack and earns a penalty, the other boat will finish the race and be back in it's pen by the time the penalised boat does a 360 to unwind his penalty.

One wonders how many of the old racing rules have become redundant with the new format of vessels, if any.
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