FORD TECHNOLOGY ADDS TO AMERICAONE'S QUEST FOR THE 2000 AMERICA'S CUP
AmericaOneLeads the Competition with Three Official Sponsors
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., September 24, 1998 - AmericaOne, the San Francisco-based challenger for sailing's prestigious America's Cup trophy, announced that Ford Motor Company has joined its team in the quest to win the Cup in New Zealand in 2000. Ford will provide essential technology as well as financial support as the exclusive automotive sponsor of AmericaOne.
"With Ford joining our team as an Official Sponsor, in addition to Hewlett Packard and Bellcore/SAIC (Science Applications International Corporation), we now have a technological consortium behind AmericaOne that is unmatched by any other challenger," stated Paul Cayard, AmericaOne Skipper and CEO. "Technology is a determinant factor in winning the America's Cup, and getting exclusive access to Ford technology gives us a competitive advantage in this critical area of the campaign. We are now a little more than half way to our goal for campaign funding and quality sponsorships in the categories that will make a competitive difference."
AmericaOne, headed by 1997-1998 Whitbread Round the World Race champion Cayard, became the first American syndicate to announce a major sponsor in April with the signing of information technology partner Hewlett-Packard.
Ford will provide AmericaOne with world-class capabilities in computational fluid dynamics and finite element modeling for structural analysis of the yacht's rig, hull and appendages. AmericaOne's design program will rely extensively upon Ford's Computer-Aided Engineering (CAE) capabilities to support the aerodynamic and hydrodynamic components of the boats' design analysis.
Ford also will benefit from the technology transfer; Ford's auto industry-leading CAE capabilities will be put to the test in a rigorous environment that ultimately will benefit Ford customers as the automaker races to develop a new generation of safe, functional and highly efficient vehicles. And Ford engineers assigned to the project will gain an enhanced understanding of advanced materials, including carbon fiber composites, that may play a greater role in cars and trucks in the coming decade.
"AmericaOne was the clear choice among America's Cup teams the clear choice for Ford because of their success on three fronts," said Neil Ressler, vice president, Advanced Vehicle Technology, Ford Motor Company. "First, their program offered technological superiority in the design and development work conducted to date. Second, they have the best sailing talent imaginable with Skipper Paul Cayard, Tactician John Kostecki and the others on the team. And third, their other technology partners also bring to the team an environment that will challenge and stimulate the engineers we assign to the team."
"We're confident that Ford will fortify AmericaOne's boat design program and provide needed expertise to gain the best chance to succeed in this prestigious race," Ressler said.
A number of experienced Ford engineers will be assigned to work with the AmericaOne team and its technology partners, said Bill Powers, vice president of Ford Research. "There is a close correlation between the work we do to make a car 'slippery' as it travels through the air down a highway and the work an America's Cup design team does to ensure the boat is slippery through the water," Powers said. "In fact, one of the team members from Research who has been assigned to work on this project has a PhD in Naval Architecture. Our people will bring a great deal of knowledge and expertise to this effort, and they in turn will learn from the total systems design experience."
"Ford's computer aided engineering capabilities will help us optimize critical components of the boat where high strength, light weight and aerodynamic shape are essential for top performance," said Bob Billingham, chief operating officer of AmericaOne. "Until now, we've remained strategically quiet about our design program, knowing we are out in front of the pack. Today is another proud day for us and I think this is a great omen for what's to come during the Cup races."
The America's Cup
The next America's Cup will be held in Auckland, New Zealand in February and March 2000. Challengers will race in a selection series from October 1999 through February 2000 to select one challenger for the America's Cup match race against Team New Zealand. Sixteen challengers from 10 nations have met the requirements to race in the Challenger Selection Series. The racing will draw extensive worldwide TV coverage during the 16 weeks of competition.
Ford has been involved in the America's Cup since 1978. Ford once again will join forces with SAIC and Nelson-Marek Yacht Design, all three of whom participated in the PACT '95 campaign, which is now the New York Yacht Club's Young America campaign.
AmericaOne is dedicated to recapturing the America's Cup by applying U.S. technology in computer equipment, aerodynamics, hydrodynamics, sail design, naval architecture and structural engineering to America's Cup sailboat design. In addition to Ford, technology partners include Hewlett-Packard and Bellcore/SAIC. Operating since June 1, 1996, the AmericaOne team is comprised of 36 professionals, including 20 members of the design team, actively working on the research and design of its sailboats. AmericaOne is the challenger on behalf of San Francisco’s St. Francis Yacht Club.
To learn more about AmericaOne, visit the web site at www.ac2000.org. To learn more about Ford Motor Company, visit the web site at www.ford.com
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