America’s Cup: Going big, Going small
Published on February 16th, 2023
Following their successful defense at the 36th America’s Cup, Emirates Team New Zealand has opened the cabinets to entice challengers to dethrone them. The Swiss team entered once the Kiwis sold them their first AC75 and the French team entered after they secured a latest generation technology package from the Defender.
When you choose a 75-footer that is both massively expensive and complicated, it is hard to get to the start line… let alone the finish line.
However, the Kiwi team held back one ace, and that’s their AC75 which they used to beat Italy’s Luna Rossa in the 36th Cup Match. Named Te Rehutai, it has been under wraps since that March 2021 victory, but the defender is bringing it back into the sunlight.
STUFF media reports how the innovative AC75 made a surprise reappearance at the team’s new base in Auckland on February 16, and will soon be back out foiling around the harbor to test new configurations.
“It will also be interesting to see if Te Rehutai features a twin-helming set-up which is the way the innovative AC40s have been configured and seems to be the way forward after Luna Rossa successfully debuted the feature two years ago, reducing the need for crew movement during turns,” queried Duncan Johnstone of STUFF.
The Kiwi team has two AC40s they’ve used for training, with only Alinghi Red Bull Racing and American Magic using older AC75s. But as the defender shifts to the bigger boat, other teams will be splashing their newly arrived AC40s which they were required to buy from Team New Zealand for pre-regattas and the Women’s & Youth America’s Cup.
The Swiss and British teams have recently begun using their AC40s in Europe while USA will see the 40-footer at American Magic’s Florida training site in February.
Following the publication of the AC37 Protocol and AC75 Class Rule on November 17, 2021, the AC75 Class Rule and AC Technical Regulations were finalized on March 17, 2022. The entry period opened December 1, 2021 and runs until July 31, 2022, but late entries for the 37th America’s Cup may be accepted until May 31, 2023. The Defender was to announce the Match Venue on September 17, 2021 but postponed the venue reveal, confirming it would be Barcelona on March 30, 2022. The 37th America’s Cup will be held in September/October 2024.
Teams revealed to challenge defender Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL):
• INEOS Britannia (GBR)
• Alinghi Red Bull Racing (SUI)
• Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli Team (ITA)
• NYYC American Magic (USA)
• K-Challenge Racing (FRA)
Additional details: www.americascup.com/en/home