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AmericaOne New Zealand Chronicles:
An Island in the Pacific

Daily Report - January 6, 2000-

Auckland, NZ

Sometimes we feel like we are on an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean when we are getting pounded by one storm after another. In between we have these short breaks when high's develop to the East and come floating in over the North Island. When we have these days we all have lunch on the deck of the hospitality tent in the sun and declare "now this is what we read in the travel brochure!" Clouds, our meteorologist, walks around the office without his shoes (grounding himself no doubt) and is incredibly accurate with his weather predictions. This morning he was grinning because he was set to win a few debates that there would be no racing today. He was right. The high that approached over night broke down as evidenced by the increasing isobars on the weather map weakening all gradient winds in the area. Clouds predicted no more than seven knots max and we barely had half of that most of the day. As a result, no racing. The Challengers Association has agreed that no races will not be started in under five knots of breeze.

On non race days we all become amateur weather forecasters and try and come up with our own predictions. From the weather maps Clouds has posted on the bulletin board we are in for a whopping next week. There is a nasty low developing off Bass Strait that is making its way into the middle of the Tasman Sea. By the density of the clouds it looks like it has a lot of moisture in it. My forecast, get ready to get pounded next Wednesday by a wild one. What this means for the racing is we will see increasing weather and breeze from today until it gets too ferocious to sail next week. Also, here comes the lump! When the lows and weather approach from the North East they kick up nasty water conditions in the Gulf. I think we will go and stock up on some AmericaOne logo'ed snorkels for the crew!

On days when we are on wind hold it strikes me harder than race days how much effort goes into each day. The shore crew has been here since 6 AM splashing all the equipment. The sailmakers have been here all night repairing sails if there was damage from the day before. The sailing team has been on the water for six hours floating around getting baked in the sun. All the staff have readied the Spectator Boat and 100 or so of our supporters have drifted around for hours waiting for the wind. Unbelievable! Tomorrow we will do it all again with hopefully more wind when we go head-to-head with Mr. Gilmour.

Chris Perkins

About The Challenge

AmericaOne is one of the leading challengers for America's Cup 2000. The team is currently competing in Auckland, New Zealand for the Louis Vuitton Cup and the right to challenge New Zealand for the America's Cup in February 2000. AmericaOne has built two boats based on 4 years of technology development and innovation. The top level technology partners are Hewlett-Packard Company, Telcordia Technologies/SAIC, Ford Motor Company/Visteon and United Technologies Corp. AmericaOne represents San Francisco's St. Francis Yacht Club. To learn more about AmericaOne visit: www.americaone.org.

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