The scuttlebut on Team New Zealand’s scuttling of hope

Via the tipline

So here be what Oracle apparently did:

From a guy at Oracle who dined with a mate of mine last night having returned from San Fran told my mate what they did to Oracle’s boat:

– On third day of racing Oracle had jumbo at Auckland Airport, kit and machinery and ovens loaded on to San Fran with staff;

– Larry hired a Navy flow tank and they put the second boat in it and worked on foils and foil mechanicals;

– The result was two different foils – one for up wind foiling and one for down wind so they could only be fast in one direction on upwind and likewise on downwind;

– Mechanical device created that could use stored power/hydraulics to shift pitch of foil so that guys didn’t have to pump it themselves to make boat go up onto planning on foils but allowed it to be mechanically pitched faster;

– Fixed wing sail twist;

They essentially created a fast upwind boat that was able to jump onto foils without massive onboard effort and plane on foils across one reach in lower winds. It created a 1.5 minute improvement in time to complete upwind leg over night. That same upwind foil and mechanism also benefitted them for starts. The strategy put them sailing predominantly but not always on the preferred tack and when they did they went fast. They avoided tacks.

Also some Indian guy was on talkback this morning claiming his son is the IT guy for Oracle who controls the foil from his laptop at base by radio and it was permissible under the rules. So if that’s true (sounds odd) then Oracle team are simply grinding hydraulics to charge only on their boat whilst this guy onshore is adjusting the trim using the mechanical device that adjusts it with stored energy.

The Team NZ guys are grinding to shift pitch and working harder.

This guy my mate had dinner with said they fluked it that they got the work done in time only because of delays in wind conditions and or cancelled races and if the wind hadn’t come up they would have been beaten because they wouldn’t have changed the boat in time.

He also said Larry spent $50m in 7 days doing this work.

So we got beaten by a massive change in boat speed caused by this work above. My mates guy is reliable because he works for Oracle and literally got back Monday. So its legit. The bit claimed on radio isn’t substantiated ….


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

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