Kiwi nation exhaled today

Published on September 18th, 2019

Following the big reveal of Defiant, the first AC75 of America’s Cup challenger American Magic, a letter from Ed Vitrano gave us a good chuckle. “Well . . . all the traditionalists screamed ‘Bring back the monohulls to the AC.’ Defiant indeed. You happy now?!”

Nobody anticipated this shift, that’s for sure. Remember the canting keel? That seems so yesterday. The foiling catamaran era is now looking pretty tame too, and after watching the IMOCA 60s fly, and just about everything else that a foil gets attached to, we better think up some new terms. Just saying monohull ain’t good enough.

As for the defender, kiwi nation finally exhaled as their team’s AC75 finally got to strut. Here’s a report from the New Zealand publication Live Sail Die on September 18, 2019:

Emirates Team New Zealand finally put us all out of our misery and showed off “Te Aihe” on the Hauraki Gulf. Ironically, they were sailing on the 2000 and 2003 race course area with a flotilla of fans attempting to keep up.

Live Sail Die photographer Rachel von Zalinski was there to capture the team in their element and was blown away by their speed.

“They were incredibly fast and particularly impressive having jumped straight out of the gates today in lighter winds – without having had a preliminary boat to play with as the other teams have.”

Foiling was originally assisted by tow and then the beast was let off the leash, though beast can’t possibly be the correct term for her now due to the grace emanated today. A beautiful start by her sailors which was met with audible elation from the boats chasing.

We are extremely proud of Emirates Team New Zealand for their innovation and respect for taking our sport to the next level with every Americas Cup.

For photos… click here.

In addition to Challenges from Italy, USA, and Great Britain that were accepted during the initial entry period (January 1 to June 30, 2018), eight additional Notices of Challenge were received by the late entry deadline on November 30, 2018. Of those eight submittals, entries from Malta, USA, and the Netherlands were also accepted. Here’s the list:

• Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL)

• Luna Rossa (ITA) – Challenger of Record
• American Magic (USA)
• Malta Altus Challenge (MLT) – WITHDRAW
• Stars & Stripes Team USA (USA)
• DutchSail (NED) – WITHDRAW

Of the three late entries, only Stars+Stripes USA remains committed, but they still must complete the entry fee payment process before they will be eligible to race. They have already paid their initial payment but as a late entry challenger under the Protocol they also have a liability to pay a US$1million late entry fee due in installments by October 1, 2019. This deadline coincides with the venue schedule which has the construction of their team base beginning in late 2019, which we assume was done in the event the team is unable to fulfill their payment deadline.

Key America’s Cup dates:
✔ September 28, 2017: 36th America’s Cup Protocol released
✔ November 30, 2017: AC75 Class concepts released to key stakeholders
✔ January 1, 2018: Entries for Challengers open
✔ March 31, 2018: AC75 Class Rule published
✔ June 30, 2018: Entries for Challengers close
✔ August 31, 2018: Location of the America’s Cup Match and The PRADA Cup confirmed
✔ August 31, 2018: Specific race course area confirmed
✔ November 30, 2018: Late entries deadline
✔ March 31, 2019: Boat 1 can be launched (DELAYED)
✔ 2nd half of 2019: 2 x America’s Cup World Series events (CANCELLED)
October 1, 2019: US$1million late entry fee deadline
February 1, 2020: Boat 2 can be launched
April 23-26, 2020: First America’s Cup World Series event in Cagliari, Sardinia.
During 2020: 3 x America’s Cup World Series events
December 10-20, 2020: America’s Cup Christmas Race
January and February 2021: The PRADA Cup Challenger Selection Series
March 2021: The America’s Cup Match

AC75 launch dates:
September 6 – Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL), Boat 1
September 10 – American Magic (USA), Boat 1; actual launch date earlier but not released


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