Dramatic conditions in Trapani on day 2 of the penultimate Extreme Sailing Series™ and the public in the medieval Sicilian town were treated to a stunning display of tactical combat, near capsizes and heart-in-mouth action as the teams battled with 22 knots of wind, around the tight racecourses. www.extremesailingseries.com
AUDI A1 t-bones Bribón in Cagliari
With dark clouds covering the race area and an oppressive, humid air replacing the early sunshine, the final race of the day in Cagliari was marred by a first beat collision between Audi A1 powered by All4ONE and Bribon. The Franco-German team lost control in the final, painful seconds as they tried to duck the Spanish boat and struck them hard one third of the way from the back of their port topsides. Both boats had to retire and Bribon will not be able to take any further part in the regatta.
Lucky for us, avid volcano lovers Stephen & Donna O’Meara are also dedicated photographers. Stephen & Donna O’Meara explain the chaos in above photograph: “As the hot eruption cloud swirls, a vortex is created that spins off rare volcanic cyclones. As red rivers of lava pour into the Pacific Ocean from Hawaii’s Kilauea Volcano, huge explosions blast fragments of hot lava and cinder upwards 1,000 feet or more. These pieces of fragmented lava are called tephra –the booming tephra explosions create arcs of color during long exposures. During the daylight hours the hot lava looks black. As sun goes down it begins to glow red and a vast steam clouds form as it meets with ocean water.” http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/visualscience/2010/09/20/after-volcanic-eruptions-come-volcanic-cyclones
It is exactly one week ago that Russell Coutts, during a presentation in his team’s base in Valencia, argued that a change in the America’s Cup was necessary since his target audience would now be the „Facebook generation“ and not the „Flintstones generation“ as it has been the rule in the previous editions. Since the Facebook generation, according to Coutts‘ argumentation, wants cool and fast boats, the only way to achieve this is with multihulls.
Although I personally disagree with the choice of boat, arguing about that is meaningless. This is the America’s Cup and the Defender will always take the decisions that minimize the risks of defeat. Given the liberty to set the rules of the game, nobody would be naive enough to give up any advantage they might have. Larry Ellison and Russell Coutts have decided that the best option is for the next edition of the Cup to be sailed on 72-foot wingsail catamarans, so we have to live with that and move on.
Yet, in the presentation there was a discrepancy, in my opinion, between the message and the way it was conveyed. If the target audience was indeed the Facebook generation why have a show where the old-age stereotypes about sailing are perpetuated once again? With all respect to the commodores of the two yacht clubs, does anyone think that a dull presentation with white-haired old people wearing blue blazers was the right approach? It seemed as if the target wasn’t the Facebook generation but rather the Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin generations. One wouldn’t expect to have Justin Bieber sing before Coutts made his speech but why not bring a young sailor to make the pitch, especially concerning the Youth America’s Cup?
Adam Minoprio is still the world’s number one match racer but having now crossed over to the „dark side“ by joining Emirates Team NZ, I understand he wouldn’t be very welcome in the BMW Oracle base. Still, there are several young, aggressive and successful sailors. Take Torvar Mirsky, Keith Swinton or Phil Roberston. Why not give the stage to them to talk about how „cool“ the new boats are and how exciting the Youth America’s Cup will be. In fact, I think it’s one of the best concepts we heard in the presentation last week and I was surprised how nobody had thought about it in the past. It appears it was an original idea of Tom Ehman, surprisingly another member of the blue-blazer-wearing crowd.
I hope it was just teething problems of the new America’s Cup organization and it will be fixed in the near future. They might want to have a look at this video [above] to check what kind of sports the Facebook and YouTube generation is practicing. That’s definitely „cool stuff“!
great comment by http://valenciasailing.blogspot.com
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