AmericaOne New Zealand Chronicles:
AmericaOne Now Has Two
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by Larry Edwards, Quokka Sports
Wednesday, November 17, 1999 -
Skipper Paul Cayard has a new weapon in his already lethal arsenal. The second of AmericaOne Challenge's stealth-grey boats, USA-61, was formally christened this morning at the team's Halsey Street compound in Auckland's Viaduct Basin.
"Both barrels of our gun are now loaded, and I'm excited about the promise the boat holds," Cayard said of the last of the America's Cup yachts to arrive in Auckland.
Is he calling this boat AmericaTwo? Hardly. Reflecting the team's high-tech philosophy, he's already given the boat a high-tech handle: AmericaOne.2 (dot two).
With an estimated 150 invited guests, representatives of the news media and crew looking on, the boat was christened by Lucy Jewett, the wife of AmericaOne chairman George "Fritz" Jewett, Jr. It was no simple task, however. It took two whacks at the bow before the bottle of bubbly broke, showering her and Cayard with champagne.
As with many of the America's Cup boats, the keel was hidden behind a shroud, as was the boat's knife-like rudder.
"This boat is the beneficiary of what we learned from USA-49," Cayard said in reference to AmericaOne's unique strategy of delaying the final design and construction until the first boat was complete and in the water.
Cayard and principal designer Bruce Nelson figure that this boat, in terms of research and development, is another half-generation beyond the other 16 boats built for this regatta, including the two launched by defender Team New Zealand.
The new boat's first sail is scheduled for Friday, and the two-boat testing programme will begin when the current round ends. Whether the new boat will race in Round 3 or be held out until the semifinals in January has not been determined. It will depend on how the testing goes and what the weather forecasts are, Cayard said.
Principal designer Nelson said last July, at the christening of USA-49, that USA-61 is designed for the lighter conditions expected in January and February.
For full story go to: www.americascup.org
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