Three "rockets" ready to face Alinghi? @ Valencia Sailing - SailNet Community

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Three "rockets" ready to face Alinghi? @ Valencia Sailing
by NewsReader 04-20-2006

With a mere twenty days left till the next Louis Vuitton Acts, all of the Big-Four teams (Alinghi, BMW Oracle, Emirates Team New Zealand and Luna Rossa) take advantage of every single day in order to train with both their boats. Unlike Alinghi that still use their boats built in previous America's Cup campaigns and modified to the new rules, all of the three top challengers are sailing and testing their newly built and delivered yachts. SUI-91, the brand new boat of the Swiss Defender of the America's Cup, is (to the best of our knowledge) still inside the team's shed in Valencia's yacht club, being readied to sail.So far, only Luna Rossa have made it absolutely clear that it is their intention to race with their new boat in three weeks. BMW Oracle and ETNZ have neither confirmed it nor denied it and will decide upon completion of the tests. While in the previous Louis Vuitton Acts the question of what boat the main challengers were going to use was of lesser importance, in 2006 it has moved to the fore. Will they race with their new "rocket", building an early advantage or will they keep their cards close to their chests? Time will tell. So far there haven't been any public comments concerning the performance of these three new boats and most probably there won't be any. As a result, we decided to run a small series of photos for their comparison.The photos of the three new boats inside Port America's Cup were not taken in the same moment or day, but we tried to shoot them in a similar situation, that is being towed out of the port with the full load of sails and crew. We also added a third picture of the boats sailing (except NZL-84, as the team doesn't allow us to use any of their material), made public by each team, as it is obvious that training sessions of the "Big Four" teams are strictly off limits to third-party media or photographers, such as Valencia Sailing. Luna Rossa ChallengeLuna Rossa's ITA-86 being towed out of Port America's Cup. Photo taken by Pierre Orphanidis / Valencia SailingLuna Rossa's ITA-86 being towed out of Port America's Cup. Photo taken by Pierre Orphanidis / Valencia SailingLuna Rossa's ITA-86 training off Valencia's coast. Photo copyright: Carlo Borlenghi / Luna Rossa ChallengeBMW Oracle RacingUSA-87 of BMW Oracle being towed out of Port America's Cup. Photo taken by Pierre Orphanidis / Valencia SailingUSA-87 of BMW Oracle being towed out of Port America's Cup. Photo taken by Pierre Orphanidis / Valencia SailingUSA-87 of BMW Oracle training off Valencia's coast. Photo copyright: Gilles Martin-Raget / BMW Oracle RacingEmirates Team New ZealandNZL-84 of Emirates Team New Zealand being towed out of Port America's Cup. Photo taken by Pierre Orphanidis / Valencia SailingNZL-84 of Emirates Team New Zealand being towed out of Port America's Cup. Photo taken by Pierre Orphanidis / Valencia Sailing Direct Link

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