The America’s Cup is the oldest trophy in international sports and recognized as the Holy Grail of sailing.
Where/When: Auckland, New Zealand, in March 2021
Defender: Te Aihe (Maori for “Dolphin”), (NZ), formerly Emirates Team New Zealand
Challengers: Defiant (US), formerly Oracle Team USA, Britannia (UK), Luna Rossa (IT)
The revolutionary 75 ft. monohulls, known as AC75s, rise out of the water on hydrofoils and are capable of reaching speeds in excess of 50 knots (57 mph). By comparison, the AC50 catamarans sailed in 2017’s 35th America’s Cup held in Bermuda were also capable of foiling at 50 knots (57 mph) – which at the time was considered frighteningly fast. This speed potential translates to four times the speed of true wind. The eleven crew members must take care not to be blown off the boat!
The AC75s hull design is more about aerodynamics than hydrodynamics because the monohull will spend more time in flight than in the water. As the 6.5-ton boat gains speed, it gains stability. In addition to the vast team of diverse mechatronic engineers behind the scene, human sailing skills remain at the fore. Did I mention money? Lots of it.
Take a ride on one of these innovative “flying machines” ~