34th America’s Cup Design - Mono or Multi Hull ?

The next stage of boat design concept breifing for the 34th Americas Cup was released today:

Target Features:

Option of Monohull & Multihull: High-performance and close racing, Light to strong wind range capability, Ease of shipping & transportation, 22m max overall Length

Monohull :
1.0 x wind speed upwind performance
1.4 x wind speed downwind performance
Narrow displacement range
Combination of bow and twin rudders allowed
Unlimited gennaker area
13 crew

Multihull :
1.2 x wind speed upwind performance
1.6 x wind speed downwind performance
Displacement 4000-4200kg
Up to four moveable appendages
Wing sails permitted
Demountable assembly
12 crew (11 sailors crew plus observer)

http://www.cupinfo.com/en/ggyc-press34-americas-cup-high-performance-class-designs-10023.php you can read the detail pdf concept for mono and multi hulls near the bottom of the page …very interesting stuff :slight_smile:

Cheers Alan


Purely on a selfish opinion I’d want multi’s.

  • Loads of untried ideas and room for development and original input.
  • Not to mention the high load/high breakage rate that keeps us in work! :wink:

But - I feel that Multi’s go against the ‘spirit’ of the Cup and, could in the long run cause more harm then good…

Traditions are a part of the game and Sponsors will have a hard time coughing up for an untested platform.
I guess the progression could be a bit to severe to invest the 50 - 100 million required.
Its interesting how there are only two options… given that a third option, a fixed keel boat isn’t included.
If you have ever sailed on a Volvo 70 ( I Have) - you will know that these things are not meant for short course racing… They are hard work to tack and you wouldn’t engage in a tacking duel in one, EVER! ( Which is pretty exciting to watch BTW)
It makes me ask - Do Oracle secretly want to go multi?.. I have a hunch they do.

Just my 0.01€’s worth anyhow… Jim.

Jim -

I must disagree on a couple of your items in post.

  1. Spirit” of the cup kind of went out the door when New Zealand tried the monster monohull/countered by Conner’s Stars & Stripes wingsail cat back in the 1980’s.
  2. All a team needs to do is “tie” itself to a proven designer/build/program. There in Europe, multihull racing is about 12 steps (or more) ahead of multihull sponsorship than here in the U.S. I have a feeling guys like Nigel Irens, Melvin/Morrelli, and probably a few new guys sitting in the winds (Maarstom perhaps?) might make an impact in new ideas - simply based on the “Around the World” boats. After all - those are designed for a variety of wind/waves, different points of sail, and seem to find a bunch of sponsors standing in line to tie in with a possible winner. To me (personal opinion) anything that can make it around the world - multi or mono - is the type of boat and crew that should be in the competition. If not, just drag out some old 1970’s designs of “anything” hang a carbon rig and new sails on it, and pass it off as “exciting”.

I think the biggest problem was the way-to-short recent event - (2 out of 3 ???) which more or less ignored the many of us who enjoy “speed” as being a part of racing. I know I don’t endear myself with those who just “love” watching ponderous, slow, monohulls that only race in the “right” conditions.

So change the format of the event -
Limit multihulls to 40 feet - there are a bunch of them out there already.
Allow more competitors to enter/race without having to own a bank.
A year of fleet racing around the globe - China, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, France/Spain, Germany, Britain, South America (Brazil/Argentina/Chile) the US - east and west coasts plus perhaps a Great Lakes event (Chicago) and Vancouver/Northwest
Say there are twelve entries for a fleet.
After fleet racing, the boats are already sequenced for eliminations in match type racing - perhaps two weeks at the “Cup Site” and first place races 12th. Place, 2nd. Place races 11th. Place, etc.
With the bracket winners winding up against each other in the best of seven (suggestion)

If a sponsor knows they will have that kind of exposure, in that many places, both sponsors and media will line up to bring the races to TV - and meanwhile think of the gambling opportunities for those who decide to set up a wager system for all races, individual races, etc.

Hi Dick,

Blimey…I’m getting good value for 0.01€ !

Unfortunately I do not have the time to pick holes in your proposal as I am too busy with the people already in the industry - I’m sorry to say.
Just to highlight the complexity of the situation, everyone should be aware that I saw first hand the filming of the Extreme 40’s today had to be canned in 20+knts.
It seemed that trying to film any usable footage was impossible.
Doing that in 25 -30 knts with a good fetch will be an amazing feat from a Rib, be it Mono or Multi.
The idea looks good on paper, but get out on a boat and nature soon cuts you down to size.
This is not F1…
The variables are immense.
For a comparison, perhaps it would be like nature toying with gravity and changing every other corner as the cars are going round the track…?!..

As far as 'Spirit"goes… Why on earth would try and deny that this has a special heritage… flippant comment!
Nuff said.

I did not suggest Extreme 40’s ( extreme ???) - only the size. Use Formula 40 if you want as a “size” - and go from there.

Again - I suggested boats that could complete in all weather - and conditions. If the “purists” persist in want to control the winds, waves, temperatures, number of crew, size of stick, how many bottle of Evian water are on board, and play the silly “parlor” games to keep the “spirit” - by all means, line up, plunk down more money that the GNP of some nations, and enjoy the “bob about” mentality that has turned “ocean racers” into “pond boats”. Those same “purists” (self-named) are then the ones who can squeeze every dime out of the event - making it strictly a money-based/money-making effort.

As an example - I would forgo any involvement in the America’s Cup and just focus/support “TRUE” sailing with the “LITTLE” America’s Cup (C Class Championships now) and even they will only race in the “proper” conditions. While it doesn’t line up with my ideas of such a “spiritual” event - I am /and recognize, those currently playing are what I would easily identify as “Amateur” sailors. At least they sail because they want to - no one has to pay them to race.

Sorry - but when the 12 Meter class died as the boat of choice - so did the America’s Cup (at least for me) - while for others, when the J Boats went away, so did the “spirit” of the event. It has now become simply a money-hungry machine.

As for filming, tell the AB Amro boats about video footage taken from their last go-around in extreme conditions. Your issue of using an RIB to get Extreme 40 photos in heavy air, is like trying to keep up and photograph an F-16 from a propeller driven fixed wing aircraft…which would be similar to your F1 comparison, perhaps.

Sorry - I think the “Genie” is now out of the bottle - and my bet is the ad agencies for potential sponsors will dictate what hits the water next. Again, I might be wrong, but I wouldlay money on another multihull event.

Ok Jim I will raise your 0.01€ to 0.02€

I have the impression both concepts will miss the sweet spot.

They’re saying the rule should ensure close racing while being able to sail in a wide range of conditions…tough call for both concepts !

High performance light displacement mono’s will certainly have speed as will winged sails on multis but as you say, canting keel mono hulls are not ideal for close short course tacking duels let alone in dail up, but neither are multi’s for that matter.

Which type of boat is best for racing and media impact is the major part of the evaluations, if I understand it correctly?..in my opinion, one objective needs to take priorty over the other otherwise it’s like holding a candle which is burning from both ends … fingers will get burnt ! Like you I go with the fixed keel mono also.

Which ever way the decision favours the ultimate challenge will be to design & build these babies by the sailing teams … and you will be a busy beaver :slight_smile:

Cheers Alan

Hi Alan -

if the desire is to “ensure close racing” - it will require a one-design (or very limited development) set of rules. I agree that canting keels are long-distance runners (usually) and unless engines are allowed for canting the keel, a fixed keel make more sense (plus less things to go wrong) for short course racing - unless they are mandatory - putting all teams back to a level playing field.

Why are “tacking duels” a requirement? It is because that is probably the one sure way to stay ahead of a competitor - is it because it adds “excitement” - or is it simply a “carry-over” from the old days? If tacking is what you want, maybe I should have kept my old Laser from college days? Ummm - maybe not. The big egos would be lost among all the other boats “normal” people could afford. Perhaps “this” is what transforms the event - none of us mere mortals could afford one of the “CUP” boats.

Unless you guys have never witnessed a large one design fleet of multi-hulls ---- or even a limited development class such as the Formula 18 cats, I would submit there are the same amount of tactics (just different ones) as used on monohulls. At the end of a large fleet race of multihulls of similar design/size it is surprising how close racing can be - with the nod given to someone who manages a good wind shift, a well executed tack, smart downwind tactics, … oh oh ---- starting to sound like a monohull race (sorta).

Heck - even the “A” Class cats which are largely developmental have recently entered the “world of curved daggerboards” - and a lot of the big, around-the-world ocean surfers have been using them for a few years. Maybe both are not as extreme as those used in the recent cup, but the ideas are not new - just further developed.

As for media interest which seems to be a primary focus - large sails, speed, seeing a sailboat almost tip over (for non-racers seeing a cat or tri on a single hull for first time) helicopter (not RIBS) trying to keep up with the racers, deck shots with water over the crew/deck from wind and waves, and interesting skipper interviews of “young” people - not old codgers with too much money to spend, are what draw viewers - and hence sponsorship advertising dollars.

Here a local bar often runs a video of one of the Amro boats doing an around the world race - and it is one of the few things that when it comes on, pulls folks away from baseball, basketball, college games, or other professional sports on the other TVs. Why? - it’s the action, of course. Listening in to some of the comments of non-sailors is fun. The biggest issue - mono or multi - is too long of courses - they aren’t in an arena, bowl, or stadium. The “product” (i.e. boat) needs to be unique. Virtually “everyone” has seen photos or video of monohulls draped with human ballast hanging over the windward rail, pounding to windward. Few folks see multihulls of the size raced, let alone able to comprehend how “that airplane wing-thing” manages to make the boat go. Add in the sheer size, the speed as the RIBS try to keep up, and the fact that at any moment the multi might tip over and it seems clear what (at least I think) would draw crowd interest - but I also keep in mind, this is sailing - only a step away from bowling, golf, or other high action sports. :stuck_out_tongue:

Ahhhh - -only speculation and opinion right now ----but will be fun to look back in 20/20 hindsight and see what transpires. I’ll cross my fingers for the multis -


Hi Dick, I had a tornado for couple of seasons (many, many moons ago) and that was damn exciting set of sticks with sails, but I spend more time in the water than sailing it. Must admit have not witnessed large multi’s close racing but I would love to see Godzillas in the fresh, I’m in awe how they look so graceful at speed …

Personally I love the excitement of the V70’s …this is sailing porngraphy …has got to be the most exciting experience you can ever have

Man that gets my heart pumping…lucky bastards !!!

Anyway back to reality, all us arm chair experts (tongue in cheek) can speculate until the cows come home, I for one have all the faith in the professionals, they will find the right solution to re-capture public attention and come up with a competitive formula to satisfy all the teams & the media.

In the mean time those of us with dollar budgets and penny salaries will be waiting with baited breath ready to build the new formula in RC versions. Then we will debate how unffordable they are for weekend hobby builders… if we make them too light :slight_smile:

Honey what do reckon if we trade-in the kids in, sell the house and the cars give up our mandane jobs and buy a V 70 !! … no no honey, I don’t mean the 4 wheel version … woman !!!

Cheers Alan


Worth a look.

Hi Alan -

yes, it is definitely the budgets that keep us at home/on the beach. A very good friend (and r/c multihull enthusiast) sent me the Oracle photo during the event. I’ve not seen it anywhere else - but just sitting still I can get pretty out-of-breath from excitement. This has got to be one of the prettiest (non-racing/sailing) photos taken of the Oracle trimaran. Thought I would share now that the event is over - but not sure who to acknowledge for copyright.

He now has his hands full trying to fix the “oooops” on their Canada’s entry for the C Class championship. Photo is of their primary boat (seconday one was also damaged) as they tried to get ashore during a “bit of wind”. I thik the event starts next week so hope tehy got this one fixed in time.

Enjoy… the last one is my old boat that I used to race.

Hey Jim, the David Glenn article covers the field of issues pretty well …scary, yet progressive stuff.

I think it was you that highlighted a major factor not to be under estimated is “Mother Nature” no other sport is so reliant on her like sailing, hope she turns up to the party on time.

Dick, Fantastic ! Sunset on Oracle Hull … Ouch ! for the Wing Sail (the pains of being a pioneer) …Oh la la ! and oldie but a goodie of your old girl :slight_smile:

just realise now I miss the 3D - AC100 pictures now here : http://www.rcsailing.net/forum1/showthread.php?5823-Post-Your-AC-boat-pictures

Not too long to wait now, Protocol is released at the end of the month, rumour is that that the design might be released early at the same time… The protocol is almost meaningless without knowing what boat you are sailing…
I know of 2 teams that would pull out if it went multi… and a lot of other people would walk away as well… Balls in your court now Oracle, after beating Alinghi down, are you going to put the millions you spent getting here on the line???
Cant wait to find out!..

Maybe everyone has seen that the last regatta for WSTA Version 5 America’s Cup class boats racing will be in the United Arab Emirates in Dubai, a fitting location for ETNZ last win :stuck_out_tongue: one-eyed KIWI … from then on, teams will be focusing their resources on their preparations for the 34th America’s Cup.

If the decision goes to in the direction of multi’s, I’m wondering what those teams that break away will do ? could the Volvo become bigger & stronger as a result !?!..makes for damn good T.V viewing and could easily evolve into reality entertainment series which people love to follow and sponsors get a damn good bang for their bucks.

Then what would the future of ACC look like ? Within the past 100 years, our skies have seen the transition from airships to aircraft. The same transition is taken place in the sailing world today, from sailing boats to flying boats with a trend for power and mass and the French l’Hydroptère project maybe a glimse of future ACC.

An example of technological perfection which aims to reduce brake and drag and totally in line with sustainable development; 5 tons of carbon and titanium that can take off only with wind force with less sail area, less brake, less consumed energy, only 2 m² in contact with water and world sailing record speeds of 50 knots !!! http://www.hydroptere.com/_en/

…interesting times and waiting with great interest too !!!

Cheers :zbeer:

Hi Everyone,

I reckon the Americas Cup has be held in 40-50 foot fixed keel mono hulls with minimum self righting/nil ballast - 12 crew on trapeze. A simple box rule, a boat that will crash/break/capsize spectacularly when over sailed and be able to sail in any weather. I guess an 18 footer on steriods is what I’m on about.The trouble with the multihull concept is that they often do not generate any illusion of speed. The last Americas Cup was exactly was a perfect example. They could have been doing 10 knots and we wouldn’t have been any the wiser. Only the mildly educated realised the speed, due to the short time it took to get from one point to another.

Like it our lump it I believe part of the reason people watch sport is that they see competitors as modern day gladiators. This is what a large number of spectators imagine themselves to be. It’s a bit like watching a crash, you cant help but watch, something attracts humans to watching other people being knocked about.

Sailing currently, apart from the Extreme 40 Cats is boring boring boring for the masses. The Extreme 40 goes some way to accommodating that excitement with close racing, smashes and frequent capsizes. Yachting has be made more exciting and one way is make it easier for viewers to sort out that what they are watching is exciting and requires huge skill levels to stop the competitors from hurting themselves.

The other thing that I believe has to be given consideration is courses. Forget triangles, windward/leewards, box courses etc, there needs to be loads of power reaches where there is high risk of crashing so maybe figure 8 courses might be the way to go.

Anyway just my 2 cents worth - have a great day

Never-mind what type of yacht it will be…
The hoops that Oracle are going to have to jump through to get their home venue are monumental when you read this…
But of course that will all get smoothed over with some serious $$$$$$$'s thrown in the pot… Just look at the numbers Europe is willing to pay!

At least we know which direction they want to take the cup.

Here is the extract:

San Francisco officials are moving quickly to acquire an exemption to state environmental law in time for a deadline to submit a proposal on hosting the next America’s Cup, The Chronicle has learned.

“Without this legislative action, it is likely that San Francisco will not be selected and the regatta will be held overseas,” said a recent memo from Mayor Gavin Newsom’s office that was used to brief environmentalists on the proposal, which would cover shoreside facilities for yachts, gear and support services.

Some environmental groups, while appreciative that city officials sought their input, warn that an exemption would open the floodgates for wealthy interests to circumvent state-required environmental review.

“We’re not going to sit by idly and let that happen,” said Tina Andolina, legislative director for the Planning and Conservation League, an environmental lobbying group.

But Andolina said she is optimistic a legislative compromise can be struck that incorporates environmentalists’ concerns.

“The devil is in the details,” she said, “but there’s a world of difference between asking for a flat-out exemption and when the community feels it’s going to be included.”

City officials say they are doing just that, providing information to environmental groups and seeking their support in securing sailing’s premier race.

“We are pursuing a number of parallel courses,” said Michael Cohen, head of the mayor’s economic development office, “but we want to keep all the options open.”

Deadline in six weeks

The city has six weeks to present a formal proposal to host the storied series of yacht races, which carries with it the promise of $1.4 billion in economic stimulus for the Bay Area, and almost 9,000 jobs.

Software billionaire Larry Ellison, whose BMW Oracle Racing team captured the cup in February in races off the coast of Valencia, Spain, has said he would enjoy defending it in his home waters of San Francisco Bay.

Ellison’s team, sponsored by San Francisco’s Golden Gate Yacht Club, gets to decide the location, timing and rules for the next cup. Spain and Italy are also vying to host the event. But Ellison’s team wants a guarantee that San Francisco will have facilities for teams to train and prepare in time for the next cup in 2013 or 2014, city officials said. A state environmental review could take months.

“The big issue is certainty,” Newsom said in an interview.

Newsom’s administration is keen to provide that assurance and is trying to get the state Legislature to approve some type of exemption before its session ends in two weeks.

Newsom said he understands environmentalists’ concerns, but described it as a unique situation. He noted that two of the three piers under consideration, Piers 30 and 32, underwent a thorough environmental review in 2002 for a defunct cruise-ship terminal project and said the proposed exemption to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) would be tailored to apply only in this instance.

“There’s just a lot at stake,” said Newsom, whose green credentials are a central part of his campaign for lieutenant governor. “You could sit there with a dilapidated pier…or you could create … $1 billion in economic activity.”

Competing offers

Despite the urgent tone of the memo, city officials said they are hopeful that even if their controversial legislative effort fails, San Francisco will still have a shot at hosting the 34th America’s Cup.

Valencia is vying to keep the races, offering a “generous financial bid,” and a group in Rome is rumored to have offered about $645 million to host the cup at an undisclosed Italian port, the memo said.

San Francisco, the only U.S. city in the running, is not offering cash but the use of city-owned bayfront property, with the rights for future development and a long-term lease.

City officials point out that even if they get a state environmental exemption, the project will still need approvals from at least 10 local, regional, state and federal entities.

Some environmental advocates are awaiting specifics before taking a position.

“It’s very difficult to ask for a CEQA exemption for a project that hasn’t been described in detail,” said David Lewis, executive director of Save the Bay.

Lewis, while excited about the possibility of weeks of races on the bay, said it was misguided to hinge San Francisco’s bid on the Legislature exempting the project from 1970’s landmark law, which required developers to file public reports on the environmental impact of their projects and address legitimate concerns.

Other environmental leaders say they will oppose a blanket exemption because it will continue a dangerous precedent begun last year, when the Legislature at the last minute approved a bill that waived some provisions of the law for a developer to build a football stadium in City of Industry in Los Angeles County.

‘Floodgates open’

The bill, which Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed in October, was presented as a one-time exemption.

“The floodgates are open,” Andolina said. “They made the decision to grant an exemption to the City of Industry and got nothing for it other than a bunch of other billionaires coming to the capital saying they want one, too.”

Michael Endicott, an official with the Sierra Club California, was skeptical his group would back a legislative fix for San Francisco.

“It would be very difficult to see how we could be supportive of such a proposal, particularly here at the last minute,” Endicott said.

Any legislation for this session would require parliamentary maneuvers, and its prospects for passage are unclear.

Assembly Speaker John Pérez, D-Los Angeles, while in San Francisco last week, said he discussed with Newsom “figuring out the ways the state can be helpful in the efforts to bring the cup here.”

But Pérez’s staff said the speaker had not been given any specific proposals.

Schwarzenegger, while also supportive of the cup coming to San Francisco, “hasn’t taken a position on anything specific to CEQA,” spokeswoman Rachel Arrezola said.

City Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, a former Green Party member and fan of the cup races since childhood, said getting a legislative exemption in just weeks is “an extraordinarily complex and ambitious endeavor.”

“San Francisco is the perfect place to host the America’s Cup,” Mirkarimi said via e-mail, “but the mayor needs to amplify why an exemption is needed and how concerns or potential pitfalls will be addressed.”

E-mail John Coté at jcote@sfchronicle.com.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/08/18/MNJD1EUS0G.DTL#ixzz0xDDFwjej

my 2 cents… and for what it is worth… 2 cdn cents

i would prefer the mono hulls… for the simple reason… it worked before. and we had some real good races .It never held back yacth design.

you could in fact point to 1 boat australia II as the first fin americas cup boat,… ben lexan put all the wieght on the keel. now we use bulbs…

i still think we can learn more. ans still have fun with mono-hulls…

but that is my 2 cents… and will not change anything

Well, it seems that someone had to let it slip & it came from a French source.

72’ Cats with a wing in San Fran, 2014.

There you go!

I’m a die hard … also hear lot of TP 52’s up for sail too :confused: … Long live Volvo Round the World

But even the Volvo has been altered and dumbed down…
No real southern ocean racing in 08-09 and they have gone further yet for 2011.
Not going to be as ‘die hard’ ever again… All changed after they lost a crew member off the ABN boat.