An Early Look at the AC72s
The AC72s are here! Well, sort of…
Challenger of Record Artemis and Defender Oracle Team USA have now both splashed their respective 72-foot cats on San Francisco Bay. But Artemis is still working on fixing the wing it broke last spring before it can go sailing, and Oracle’s boat is back in the shed after breaking a daggerboard the first day out.
Only Emirates Team New Zealand has been able to get in much sailing time, but what a time they’ve had: both on the water and above it! For months now, pundits have been speculating that underwater foil design with be just as important, if not more so, than the wings overhead—and the Kiwi’s ability to get both hulls airborne through the use of foils with a distinct L-shape under the hull has proved them right.
With luck Artemis and Oracle will soon have their boats sailing as well so we can get a good look at how the design competition is heating up.