Thursday, 26 September 2013

Oracle wins epic battle

Oracle did win the last race and will keep the Cup.
Congratulations Oracle and thank you Team New Zealand for developing these fantastic boats. We all owe ETNZ what they did for the sport.
Thank you Oracle guys for choosing such a fantastic boat for the America's Cup.
I have deep respect for both teams. For ETNZ because they did run their campaign so well, for Oracle because of the fantastic come back and their belief in the team.

Neither team was flawless, though both teams were a class apart and set a level never seen before in this sport.
For the first time sailing could measure itself with other worldsports and get a response from outside  the sailing scene. The comparison with Formula 1 is often made, but this time it could be justified due to the technology involved and because the World's best sailors were on these 2 boats.

Barker and crew; do not blame yourself, you did a fantastic job. In the America's cup the faster boat will always win in the end. You came awfully close, you may shed your tears, but you need to be proud about what the team accomplished.
Once they got it right Oracle was faster and it is easier to win a race in a faster boat. Speed is a tactician's best friend.

If we look at the boats we can draw already some conclusions for the future:

  • Aerodrag is of paramount importance. Oracle's package just had less drag.
  • Stability is the key for high consistent speeds. Oracle was slightly more stable than ETNZ
  • Foiling upwind works!
  • It's the foils. 
  • Platforms need to be stiff
  • Match racing in cats works
It was a fantastic event, not perfect, but thrilling enough to embrace it and not to bash it.
If the rumours that ETNZ did want monohulls in the next keep are true, then I am happy that Oracle did win.
The next Cup should be sailed on foiling boats again. The rule should be more a box rule this time. It is great if AC innovations will be used in other boats. This AC will have an effect on the next generation of A-class cats.

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