Monday, September 30, 2013

America's Cup may return to San Francisco

San Francisco Chronicle/Tom FitzGerald, 9/27/13. "Oracle will rethink costs in future boat designs."

Oracle wins 34th America's Cup, with rights to choose
35th America's Cup challenge venue, conditions for 2016
"Larry Ellison has said he'd love to bring the America's Cup back to San Francisco if he and city officials can agree on the details. Another big question is how many teams will join Ellison's next party.

Ellison and Oracle Team USA chief executive Russell Coutts say they'll pay a lot more attention to design and construction costs for the 35th Cup. Using some one-design elements and possibly a smaller catamaran than this year's 72-foot giant - or even returning to monohulls - would help increase the challenger field from this year's lonely trio.

It's not known if Emirates Team New Zealand will be back. The Kiwis needed a $38 million stake from the New Zealand government in this campaign, and officials might not be as generous next time around despite the sailing zeal of their constituents."   San Francisco Chronicle/Tom FitzGerald, 9/27/13.  "Oracle will rethink costs in future boat designs." 
"Reuters is reporting that Australian vintner Robert Oatley has challenged Larry Ellison for the America’s Cup.  "Oatley, famous on land for his TIK TOK wines and on the water for a series of ocean racers named Wild Oats, reportedly delivered his challenge on behalf of the Hamilton Island Yacht Club in Queensland moments after Oracle Team USA won the Cup in a stunning come-from-behind victory on Sept. 25.

...."One reason Ellison may be hanging back on naming the new challenger of record is because he’s busy negotiating with another essential party: San Francisco. This year’s Cup, while a spectacular display of sailing speed and skill, was widely criticized as costing the city too much and failing to deliver the economic benefits Ellison and Oracle had promised. By delaying the announcement of the challenger and final regatta rules, Ellison may be buying time to negotiate a favorable agreement with San Fransisco under the threat of moving the event elsewhere.

Monohulls are considered
for the 35th America's Cup race
It will be interesting to see how Ellison — excuse me, the Challenger Of Record — modifies the rules for the next Cup. The wing-masted catamarans used this time were exciting to watch, but a handful to control since the rules prohibited the kinds of basic stability controls that are used on most foiling sailboats. The rudders had horizontal surfaces to help lift the seven-ton boats out of the water, but no way of controlling them, kind of like trying to fly an airplane with the horizontal stabilizer locked."  Forbes/Daniel Fisher (Staff), 9/30/13. "America's Cup challenger will emerge soon, though the talks began long ago."  

Related USA Today/Sports, /Douglas Robson, 9/25/13. "Oracle pulls off stunning comeback in America's Cup."  "SAN FRANCISCO – Now that Oracle Team USA has improbably retained the 34th America's Cup, what can Larry Ellison & Co. do for an encore?  ....Trailing 8-1 a week ago, Oracle sailed away from Emirates Team New Zealand by 44 seconds on Wednesday to retain the Auld Mug, the oldest trophy in international sports, in a winner-take-all finale on San Francisco Bay.  ....  But in the oddity that is America's Cup, Oracle, the defender, gets to more or less call the shots for the next edition in three years....  Ellison, one of the richest men in the world, indicated that he was inclined to remain in San Francisco in the next defense with some form of foiling multihulls that were able to reach speeds above 50 mph. But he did not want to go backwards in a regatta he said had "changed sailing forever."    Reference - The Multihull Company, "Catamaran vs Monohull".

Note:  Oracle catamaran photograph by Ezra Shaw Getty Images, from the USA Today article; the Monohull photograph is from the Multihull Company,"Catamaran vs. Monohull" comparison.  For prior America's Cup articles on Fix Pacifica, use "search this blog".

Posted by Kathy Meeh

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