Friday, 24 May 2013

AC overly prudent with new proposed wind limit

I do welcome all new safety measures after the tragic death of Andrew Simpson. (see the AC site for the full list) but one: reducing the wind limit with more than 10 knots (from 33 to 20 later 23 kts).
Both the experience of the AC and ourselves shows that the foiling boats can handle more breeze. The A-class wind limit is 22 knots and Mischa and  I were cruising in 24 knots.
A smaller drop of the wind limit to say 27/28 knots seems more reasonable.  That would mean that the boats can race in Beaufort 6 instead of 5. We do race our beachcats and dinghies in 6 bft so should the AC cat to be a real sailing boat and not an odd sailing project. The whole fun of the current AC is that is like dinghy racing on big boats.
We should realize that the accident was probably caused by structural failure of the main beam and the ACRM has already suggested new testing procedures of the structural integrity of the cats.
Lowering the wind limit a bit is OK as we do not want a demolishing race and it is sensible to keep the AC boats under cavitating speeds (<50 kts="" p="">Last AC lacked relevance as it were light wind monsters. This AC has brought the whole sport to a new level, but as beach cats start to foil too and keep on sailing in 6 beaufort the AC cannot be seen any longer as the pinnacle of our sport if they indeed set this low high wind limit.
I cannot see that this drop of wind limit is supported by the AC sailors themselves.

You can compare this measure with setting a speed limit of 200 km in the F1.


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