Skip to main content

2013 America's Cup Course

Details on the 2013 America’s Cup Finals are still elusive, but a newly released course diagram eliminates most of the guesswork. The reaching starts that trialed in AC45s in the America’s Cup World Series will be the new standard. With courses laid in San Francisco Bay close to bleachers set along the San Francisco waterfront, there will be a starting area not far from the Golden Gate Bridge. The starboard-tack reach that kicks off each race will be measured in seconds, not minutes, and will be followed by a port rounding and a turn downwind for leg two.

Beyond that, the race committee has a number of windward-leeward options, all finishing on a reaching leg at the bottom of the course. The finish line will be established close to the America’s Cup Village in the shadow of Telegraph Hill. 

John Craig, principal race officer for America’s Cup Race Management, can plan with confidence, because San Francisco Bay has a westerly sea breeze that blows almost every day in the summertime. Even when a high takes over and spins out a heated easterly from the land, the large and effective Venturi tube that is the Golden Gate will almost always generate a local sea breeze, blowing the other direction, before the afternoon is out. 

Course marks won’t be inflatable buoys, but camera-carrying boats built and equipped to hold a GPS-defined position. They can also be quickly repositioned if it’s necessary to shorten or lengthen the course to meet a television broadcast schedule. The racing is very much made-for-TV. But if it works, and we can go a generation or more without seeing Cup competition again dragged into court, then AC 2013 will be remembered as a game changer, and Oracle Racing owner Larry Ellison will have his legacy.

Courses for the 2012 World Series racing in August will be similar but more compact and will finish closer to their starting point. Although it is not part of the published agenda, SAIL has reason to believe a weather mark set beyond the Golden Gate Bridge is still in the cards for 2012 and 2013, subject to sea state.

Finally, while Cup insiders have long known that NBC was the Cup’s likely—and critical—media partner, it is now official. According to the deal, NBC will air segments of AC45 racing in 2012, followed by the first two days of the finals regatta, which will be broadcast nationally September 7-8, 2013. The remaining races will then air on NBC Sports Network.

How far is the Defender willing to go to bring the America’s Cup to America? NBC not only got the rights for free, but the America’s Cup Event Authority is paying for the airtime. 

Related

Video: Celestial Navigation Pt3

. In episode three of the Practical Celestial Navigation course, Andy Howe examines the theory behind celestial navigation, the celestial triangle and the celestial sphere, and why it is important to have a basic understanding of each. Topics introduced include zenith position, ...read more

01-LEAD-6.-After-2-years-ashore,-Nada-headsto-the-water-(3)

Sailing in the Time of Covid

In mid-August 2019, my wife, Terrie, and I laid up our Malö 46, Nada, in Falmouth, England, and flew home to Maine. We booked flights back to the UK for May 2020, anticipating a summer of cruising the Atlantic coasts of France and Spain. Then Covid struck. Remember that first ...read more

Ulysse Nardin promo photo

The Ocean Race Names Official Timekeeper

With just under one year before the start of The 2022-23 Ocean Race, Swiss watch manufacturer Ulysse Nardin has been named the official timekeeper of the race. The Ocean Race, formerly known as the Volvo Ocean Race and before that the Whitbread Round the World Race, announced ...read more

Arthur Daniel_RORC Maserati - RORC Transatlantic 2022 - Jan 15th -Social Media-4

Fast Finishes for the RORC Leaders

Over the weekend, the first finishers of the 2022 RORC Transat made landfall in Grenada, led by Giovanni Soldini’s Multi70 Maserati, which was awarded line honors with a corrected time of six days, 18 hours and 51 minutes. Maserati finished ahead of Peter Cunningham’s MOD70 ...read more

Background-02

Notice to Mariners: A Blog from the SAIL Editors

As a teenager, I stumbled across a copy of Derek Lundy’s Godforsaken Sea in the back room of a used bookshop. I had never heard of the Vendée Globe and frankly found all the boat-speak in the first 50 pages a little difficult to get through. But Lundy’s storytelling and the draw ...read more

Screen-Shot-2022-01-13-at-9.26.59-AM2048x

VIDEO: Celestial Navigation Episode 2

Celestial navigation is an invaluable tool for all kinds of sailors. In episode two of the celestial navigation series, learn the basic elements of navigation and the sight reduction process using declination and GHA to determine the Geographic Position and navigate using a ...read more

Film-poster

Cruising: Year of the Sea Shanty

Along with other timeless pursuits, like baking sourdough and gardening, singing sea shanties surged back into popularity during the recent lockdown, thanks, in part, to the app TikTok and its “duet” feature, which allows singers from around the world create music together. By ...read more

Book-Cover-9780712353700

Book Review: Sailor Song

Sailor Song is the ultimate guide to the music of working sailors during the 18th and 19th centuries. The book includes lyrics and sheet music for 50 of the most beloved sea songs with fascinating historical background on the adjoining page. Chapter introductions provide ...read more