Volume I, Number 3


Paul Cayard: At the Helm
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A Special Day

    PC at Podium
    Paul Cayard

July 19, 1997, was a very special day — the first day an America's Cup class yacht sailed under the Golden Gate Bridge and docked at the St. Francis Yacht Club. For me this is the continuation of one story and the beginning of another. The boat now named AmericaOne was originally Il Moro di Venezia V, the boat with which I won the Louis Vuitton Cup in 1992, and raced in the finals of the America's Cup. Those memories make sailing her here, in the same water that I grew up sailing my Laser, very special to me.

Additionally, and more importantly, the AmericaOne team now has a great tool to use for crew selection, training, and sponsor and supporter outings. We also acquired two 30-foot rubber-sided tenders, a container of 40 sails and a spare rudder. Hopefully our friends across the bay will be getting a boat soon and we can have some very spectacular America's Cup racing in the best sailing stadium in the world.

AmericaOne will be sailing on the Bay regularly through November. She will attend the Stag Cruise in September and be active during the Big Boat Series. I would like to extend a special thanks to the entire AmericaOne staff for getting AmericaOne up to the Bay from San Diego in very short order, and for completely sorting her out so that we could even sail her just three days after her arrival.

The captain of AmericaOne is Donny Anderson, an America's Cup veteran himself, having sailed on Clipper with our friend Tom Blackaller in 1980. Last but not least, I want to acknowledge the outstanding effort of my friend Ken Keefe, who, along with his staff at the KKMI boatyard in Richmond, were also key ingredients in this successful weekend.

A1 logo Model Testing: Our design team is making serious progress this summer having started our first model testing program session. Two 25-foot models have been built, and the appendages are being tested at the University of Washington wind tunnel under the watchful eye of Boeing senior scientist Winfred Feifel. This is quite a sophisticated program and one were proud to be able to do at this early stage.

A1 logo Offshore Training: On the Whitbread front, I spent one month with my team sailing more than 4,000 miles and as far as 63 degrees north latitude. The training is done in 5- to 10-day offshore trips. This allows us to train in the style of the race, 24 hours a day. We are mostly developing sails, and being offshore allows us to be very efficient because of not having to plan on getting back to any particular point at night.

Basically, we go wherever the wind takes us given the sails we want to test. We did go around the Faeroe Islands, which is very close to Iceland. On August 5, well sail from our base in Gothenberg, Sweden, 900 miles to Cowes, Isle of Wight, and right up to the starting line for the Fastnet Race on August 9, through the finish line, and right back to Gothenberg — a 2,400-mile practice session.

A1 logo Match Racing: I have signed up to race in the Malaysia Cup Match Race regatta in Langkawi in December with the AmericaOne crew, and John Kostecki has been tapped to sail in the Virgin Islands Match Race at St. Thomas.

All in all, it is a very busy time. Of course, our corporate partner search continues and we are finding a lot of interested listeners. Most think 2000 is a long way off. We are slowing introducing them to our reality.

A1 logo Symbolic Day: Finally, I would like to thank all of our supporters for making the 19th of July possible. It was a symbolic day — AmericaOne's first real sailing day. Even though a lot is going on behind the scenes with the technical team, tank testing and fund raising, sailing is what its all about. For those of you who got to be on board that weekend, you have undoubtedly experienced one of the unique sailing experiences. For those of you who haven't gotten out yet, we look forward to taking you for the ride of your life.

Paul Cayard


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