AC 34 - What If? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 191 Old 09-07-2013 Thread Starter
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AC 34 - What If?

Anyone watching the AC races today was probably surprised NZ soundly handed Team Oracle two losses in a row. The announcers were surprised. The hushed crowd at the docks seemed shocked. The few articles I've read so far expressed surprise. Everyone seemed to think Oracle was the easy favorite, until the jury handed down the penalties a few days ago, considered by many as being severely harsh and unprecedented.

Team Oracle was forced to enter the America's Cup with a negative two points (-2 race wins) and without their head trimmer. Today's race started NZ 0, USA -2. And today, based on the results, it looked like Oracle never had a chance. They are now down 4 races.

So, what if NZ wins the next 7 races? How would that go down in the annals of the America's Cup, considering the penalties the jury cast down? Then, who really wins?
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post #2 of 191 Old 09-07-2013
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Re: AC 34 - What If?

"IF" NZ wins the next 7, they won 9 in a row. Oracle won ZERO!!!!!! at that point in time, it would probably not matter about the penalties, altho some might say a missing person was the issue......then again.

Oracle shot themselves in the foot! no ifs ands or buts! 52 secs for a loss with these rigs, is a big distance!

Oracle is the home team, if they did not like how the potential penalties could be given out, they should have litigated some more. I would prefer to go back to the 12m time, ea country had to have a crew of all their own, etc etc.......BUT, I have to admit, these beasts are much more fun to see and watch, Hence why I would not like to see 12m come back. The politeness of the time, could come back. BUT< then from things I am reading, even back int he early days, BS that is going on today, was going on then, so things have not changed! Spoiled rich boyz with there toyz! and no manners!

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post #3 of 191 Old 09-07-2013
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Re: AC 34 - What If?

I'm over Oracle. NZ deserves it. I hope they keep the ACWS. Apart from that, they just need to do a good housecleaning.

At least we have the VOR.
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post #4 of 191 Old 09-08-2013
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Re: AC 34 - What If?

There are a few of these threads running so forgive me if I repeat.

As far as I understand it, OTUSA decided to campaign their slower boat because it was more stable. Now they may have done that because their "rookie" mainsail trimmer was not skilled enough to guarantee that he wouldn't serve up a nosedive.

So where is the mainsail trimmer that sailed on the Ben Ainslee boat? If their current mainsail trimmer is not him then where is he? If it is him, why is he struggling to get things right? He didn't appear to have a problem keeping up during their testing/training.

Have they got their slower boat? It would seem so. But where is the logic? If you are being beaten on speed what is the point of being stable? If you're up there with speed and competing, then the stability is an issue but if it can be controlled then it has to be the first choice. Seems to me that was OTUSA's first error and as it happens it is critical.

So IMHO if they chose their slower boat then one should not wonder that they're being beaten. And ETNZ should not have to be embarrassed about beating them. As Julie says, everyone was surprised that ETNZ was quicker - seems even OTUSA never considered that a possibility - if they did they would never had opted for the slower boat.

There were also clear signs that OTUSA were not sailing well. Example: when rounding the top mark ETNZ were already foiling at 40 kn+ as they rounded. If you can watch that part of the race again, see how OTUSA had their leeward hull firmly buried on the water until they were effectively around the mark. Only then did they get up on the foil. That alone would cost them 100yds.

And their starting was not up to Barker's standard. Especially on the second start, Spithill had every opportunity to get to weather of Barker and give him dirty air to start in - he deliberately chose not to. WTH?? Then he compromised his boat speed to try and get a penalty on ETNZ and payed the price.

I could go on but then this post will get long enough not to be read. Suffice it to say that ETNZ may well go to 9-zip. It's not their fault.


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post #5 of 191 Old 09-08-2013
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Re: AC 34 - What If?

I haven't been following the race very closely but the local SF Bay area papers seem to think that the Oracle Team got off very easily.

I'm sure Ellison and his public relations team(s) would like to make any judgment against them appear draconian.
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post #6 of 191 Old 09-08-2013
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Re: AC 34 - What If?

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Everyone seemed to think Oracle was the easy favorite
That isn't true
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post #7 of 191 Old 09-08-2013
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Re: AC 34 - What If?

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Then he compromised his boat speed to try and get a penalty on ETNZ and payed the price.
It was a penalty. The boats clearly touched.

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Example: when rounding the top mark ETNZ were already foiling at 40 kn+ as they rounded. If you can watch that part of the race again, see how OTUSA had their leeward hull firmly buried on the water until they were effectively around the mark. Only then did they get up on the foil. That alone would cost them 100yds.
Not sure what part of the race you are referring to Andre. If it was the first mark after the start of the first race they got hit with bad air so the hull touching the water was the result. That is why the start is so important but I am sure I am not telling you anything you don't already know. I look forward to Oracle to having a good start in one of these races. That said - Go ETNZ!
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post #8 of 191 Old 09-08-2013
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Re: AC 34 - What If?

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Originally Posted by JulieMor View Post
Anyone watching the AC races today was probably surprised NZ soundly handed Team Oracle two losses in a row. The announcers were surprised. The hushed crowd at the docks seemed shocked. The few articles I've read so far expressed surprise. Everyone seemed to think Oracle was the easy favorite, until the jury handed down the penalties a few days ago, considered by many as being severely harsh and unprecedented.
"Anyone", and "everyone seemed to think ORACLE was the easy favorite"? Really?

You obviously haven't been following the AC threads at Sailing Anarchy, for one... Lots of pretty informed opinion over there, much of it has long been postulating that ETNZ was the team to beat...

Why would anyone be totally "surprised" by their performance today? ETNZ was the first team to launch their AC 72, and the first ones to be able to fly both hulls on their foils... Not to mention, they've yet to do anything like this to one of their boats...


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post #9 of 191 Old 09-08-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: AC 34 - What If?

If Oracle chose their slower, more stable boat because of the loss of their trimmer (they also lost grinder Matt Mitchell for four races), and choosing the slower boat is why they were so soundly beaten upwind, couldn't one say the penalties handed down to Oracle made it impossible for Oracle to win the Cup? From there couldn't one conclude the jury wanted Ellison out for AC 35?

Apparently, the actions of three members of a 130 member team were enough for the jury to feel justified in handing down the penalties they did. Is it possible Team Oracle wants to send a message to the jury, something like: they rigged the outcome of the America's Cup with the severe penalties? If the Kiwis dominate the two races today...
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Re: AC 34 - What If?

So you are saying Oracle is conspiring to throw the AC?
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