American Magic have survived a scare on their return to the water that reportedly left the crew “shaken”.
The team have worked hard to repair the damage from their dramatic capsize in the first week of Prada Cup racing over the last two weeks and re-launched Patriot 2.0 yesterday before hitting the water ahead of the semifinals against Luna Rossa starting tomorrow.
The New York-based syndicate had to wait more than two hours to get on their foils, with as little as three knots of wind out on the Hauraki Gulf.
But when they did, Dean Barker’s crew had to survive another anxious moment when Patriot briefly lost control.
According to Sail-World sailing writer Richard Gladwell, the AC75 “appeared to hit a boat wake and her rudder briefly ventilated” causing the bow to rise as it did against Luna Rossa when it capsized.
“Patriot threw a shower of spray as the foil arms clipped through the wake, and then she started to go bow up as the rudder struck air, as the AC75 was loading up,” Gladwell reported.
“After a spectacular crash back into the Waitemata, the AC75 did a roll to windward triggered by the leeward foil which was still generating lift as the yacht slowed.”
Fortunately for American Magic, the incident didn’t result in a capsize and the boat landed back down flat on its hull causing no damage, allowing the crew to resume training.
However, the crew appeared to be “shaken” by the incident, Gladwell wrote.
Photos of the incident show the re-patched Patriot getting decent air.
American Magic flight controller Andrew Campbell was happy with the session, but admitted they still have a lot of work to do before racing.
“It’s in a fully functional form at the moment,” Campbell told NZME on Wednesday night. “We’re just going to tune the boat in the next day or two and see if we can get racing on Friday at full pace.
“It’s a huge hurdle we’ve got over to get the boat back on the water, that’s the first step obviously, and we’re just going to gain more and confidence in the systems as they’re running right.
“We know the boat’s ready to go once we get enough breeze to get it going, so we have total confidence the boat’s going to be fast enough, it’s just a matter of making sure the systems are running up to speed.”
Heading into the Cup racing?
• Give yourself plenty of time and think about catching a ferry, train or bus to watch the Cup.
• Make sure your AT HOP card is in your pocket. It’s the best way to ride.
• Don’t forget to scan QR codes with the NZ COVID Tracer app when on public transport and entering the America’s Cup Village.
• For more ways to enjoy race day, visit at.govt.nz/americascup.
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