A lot has happened since we last visited the America’s Cup. We now practice on the longboats to prepare for the championship; team Artemis has changed the leadership of its team; and recently, at a reception held at Artemis Racing’s hangar in Alameda, Paul Cayard entertained a lot of fans.

Christening Artemis
On November 3, 2012, Consul General Barbro Osher became the godmother of Artemis by christening the new AC72 longboat. In a private ceremony for the staff and family of Artemis Racing, the svelte ship cut quite a figure at the slip beside its Alameda hangar. The new AC72 catamaran’s hard wing—the size of an airplane’s—was overwhelming. The team was able to test their new wing on a non-regulation catamaran but they capsized, damaging the wing. This delayed the launch of their new longboat, but they learned from the experience both to repair and to build stronger wings more quickly.
When they tested it on their regulation boat, they were understandably very cautious. Their caution was heightened when Oracle catastrophically capsized their AC72, destroying their wing and shredding the hulls as the ebb tide dragged the craft under the Golden Gate Bridge and five miles out into the Pacific Ocean. The crew was catapulted or dropped from 50 feet or secured themselves to the rigging until they were rescued by their chase boat.
So another new feature of America’s Cup competition is safety gear and procedures, over which all teams on the circuit confer, freely exchanging information. In addition to helmets and self-inflating life jackets, every crewman now carries a small flask of oxygen and a knife, to escape netting. They also have a carabiner on a lanyard attached to their waist, by which they can latch onto anything to keep from dropping. The buddy system alerts everyone to watch out for partners, lest anyone is missing or unconscious. And the Oracle crew practices jumping off 10-meter diving towers in full racing gear. America’s Cup is living up to its billing as an extreme sport with all new technology.
When Artemis first launched its longboat, they did so without the massive wing by towing the hulls at fast speed. But that created strains requiring repair. The new boat requires the weight of the wing to counter-balance the hulls from damaging the span.
Since the boat was repaired and the wing attached, they are now successfully practicing on San Francisco Bay.
For the 2013 competitions, the AC72 catamarans are each customized, whereas the AC45s of 2012 were standardized. These new boats are designed, built and guarded with secrecy during stealth practices on the open water so competitors cannot see or compensate for their novel advantages.
The designs of the craft and the strategies of these races is so competitive that the Italian Team has already lodged a complaint against Oracle for spying on them. With the stakes so high, it’s not beyond imagination that a team could buy or hire aeronautical and submersible drones to study the competitions’ tactics and technology.


Cup competitors
During the 2012 races with less expensive 45-foot boats, there were more teams competing: Oracle Team USA, the defender of the cup; Artemis Racing, the challenger of record; Emirates Team New Zealand, a combination of funder and former champ; Luna Rossa, the perennial European competitor; France’s Energy Team; UK’s BAR; Team Korea; and Team China.
This year there will be a couple races in Europe before the July 4 race in San Francisco. To date four teams remain: U.S., Sweden, New Zealand and Italy.
Because they bought New Zealand’s technology, both New Zealand and Italy will be racing with horizontal foils on their vertical dagger boards. New Zealand seems to have mastered sailing its customized foil design. The advantage to this is that once out of water, they can gain up to 8 knots per hour since they do not have as much water drag.
If the America’s Cup were a straight race, all competitors would use foils, but the courses require each boat to tack half a dozen times on each of the half dozen laps. Also the foils are only advantageous when going downwind; they’re useless upwind and add to the drag. Depending upon the placement of the foils, they may be more or less stable. When Oracle crashed its longboat, they exposed its foils and flukes on the rudders. Artemis is not using foils, though like all they have winglets on the rudders.

New AC72 longboat
On a bright Sunday in January, the Consul General of Sweden invited fans to a family lunch at Artemis’ hangar in Alameda. The occasion was to celebrate the launching of Artemis’s AC72, a longboat as sleek and shallow as any in its Viking heritage, built for speed in fjords and bays.
Fans were invited for a guided tour of the Artemis hangar behind the scenes. For the first time, we saw the sleek and enormous AC72 hulls made of a honeycombed layer of Kevlar or aluminum that give them their skeletal shape. On these, many sheets of waterproof epoxy are burnished to a sheen, not merely for the lustre but to hydrodynamically slice the water. Ultimately, just like an egg shell, the very shape of the hollow hull provides the strength for the craft.
Climbing up a ladder of two dozen steps we could see the surface of the netting and the massive strut joining the two hulls. Astride this would sit the towering wing, almost twice the length of the craft. And cantilevered from the strut with bracing from each of the hulls protruded a long, tubular, and undecorated bowsprit. The trampoline-taut netting was about 50-feet on a side. Without keels, the long curving dagger board on each hull and a rudder with a stationary winglet for each hull were the only physical equipment to anchor the boat to the water.
Next we examined the other marvel: the wing. Even laid out horizontally in the cavernous hangar, the 130-foot wing was huge. It consists of six tapering wing flaps, each of which can be individually and collectively bent to provide sufficient camber to capture more of the wind. These panels are made of Dacron, which provide structural stability without any flapping. Yet as strong as this flap was, our guide was able to lift it with one hand at its base.
The wing is secured by shrouds, or rigging on the boat which allows the wing to be tuned. These shrouds are made of carbon monofilament and then sometimes wrapped and bonded in multifilament sleeves, making them strong as the former stiffened ropes or steel rigging but substantially lighter.
All of this technology creates a rigid triangular wind vane, which can be tapered and curved to transfer the driving force of the wind through the boat, propelling it through the water. The bigger the wing, the easier it is to twist the top, slowing the craft to execute a tight turn. The entire boat is a tribute to technology and ever-advancing design. But if the wind is the driving force, manpower—the grinders pumping the various hydraulic pistons of the wing to optimize it—as well as nautical and tactical skill are the controlling forces, which will win the race.

Artemis anew, the AC72
The program celebrating the launch of the new longboat began with Osher expressing pride in Sweden as an official challenger of the 34th America’s Cup. The crowd was very enthusiastic and became even more so after she introduced Paul Cayard, Artemis Racing’s CEO.
Cayard, a native San Franciscan, welcomed the homeland crowd to learn more about the extraordinary event coming to the bay this summer. In the race’s 162 years (the longest international sports event), only four countries have won the cup: the U.S., Australia, New Zealand and (landlocked) Switzerland. The race has always tested men and materials, emphasizing “the best sailors, the fastest boats.”
But it has also adapted to the times: In 1970 multihulls were allowed. And recently, multinational crews were permissible, allowing the best international sailors to team together.
Since 1977 the Swedish legend, Pelle Petterson, participated for Sweden in the America’s Cup. In 1980 he sailed the yacht “Sverige” to the challenger finals—the only person in history to both design and skipper a boat.
As a young boy, Torbjörn Törnqvist was inspired by Pelle Petterson. He not only became a world class sailor and tennis player, but as a multimillionaire businessman Törnqvist committed his Artemis Racing team to compete in the America’s Cup. His home berth, the Royal Swedish Yacht Club (KSSS) is the oldest in Europe after four in the British Isles.
For all races on San Francisco Bay in 2012, Terry Hutchinson was helmsman of Artemis’ lead boat. During the October set of America’s Cup races in 2012, Artemis brought over Nathan Outteridge, a champion sailor and Olympic winner. At the end of last year, Cayard had the difficult task of replacing Hutchinson with Loïck Peyard, another Olympian and the most accomplished world champion on multihulls. Now Peyard is racing with and mentoring Outteridge. Iain Percy, also a champion, is the skipper and tactician of the Artemis team. In addition to world-renowned Cayard, everything rides on the boat envisioned by world-class maritime designer, Juan Kouyoumdjian. It’s a formidable venture of experienced sailors.

Summer sailing
After this brief history of the competition, Cayard turned to the challenge ahead as they prepare for the competition on July 4. And he proclaimed, “There is no better site [for the America’s Cup] than San Francisco,” the best spectator stadium in the world for watching this sport from land. Together with the astounding novel spectator technology, the Bay of San Francisco has its own surprising weather to challenge any sailor.
Every sailor knows that summer months on the bay are highly variable, with unpredictable winds, currents and fog. But as soon as August turns to September, the gentle, more predictable weather descends and all the sailors take to the bay—and all the rivals compete to see which one can challenge the defender in the Louis Vuitton Challenger’s Cup.
So these catamarans, while they compete in the America’s Cup World Series competition in Europe and later here for the right to challenge the defender, are really testing their novel designs against the conditions at a particular locale in a specific season. And the course is very fast but short. Rather than an outright sprint, the boats have to tack half a dozen times in each lap, making them all the more visible to this stadium city, with a 1,000 seat amphitheater built at the pier. With their 130-foot wings, these 72-foot boats can cruise at 30-40 knots per hour (about 55 mph) on a smooth day. Imagine sticking your head out of a car moving at 60 mph and carrying on a conversation with another passenger, and you’ll appreciate the challenge for the crew.
So from July through September they’ll be dancing before us on the bay. Each race—match duels and fleet racing—will last about half an hour, with several per day. The race course for 2013 is now extended for these longer boats, from Pier 39 on the Marina to finish at Piers 27-29.
First in this series is the Louis Vuitton Challenger series of round robins during July; then from August 3-16 are the semi-finals; and from August 17-30 are the Louis Vuitton finals to determine the single challenger. From September 1-4, the Red Bull Youth Competition will be held with teams of young sailors from each country represented in the America’s Cup. These sailors will be racing in the AC45s, which were raced here last year. All of these boats became the property of the America’s Cup Authority to build up the sport among young sailors and all spectators. Sweden’s young team has already qualified for this race and will be practicing here in June.
The defense of the America’s Cup will take place on San Francisco Bay from September 7-23, in a series of a dozen duels between defender and challenger.

Physical strength and safety
Cayard awed everyone with the athleticism of his crew. They strenuously workout daily and are monitored by their physicians with a full battery of tests. During workouts and practices their heart rate is often at 85 percent of maximum, but during the half hour of competition they reach 95 percent of maximum, burning more than 900 calories in that period. While the heart rate climbs linearly, because these athletes are in such superb shape, they are able to keep their lactic acid below the threshold level for most of the race. But by the end it spikes up exponentially, burning and aching every muscle—after they are pumping almost continuously for half an hour with all their might, while scrambling between sides on a bucking sea dragon.
At this point the only Swede on the crew, grinder Magnus Augustson, joined Cayard on stage, his taut muscles bulging beneath his crew’s tight-fitting uniform. He demonstrated their safety gear and stressed how seriously now everyone takes safety drills. The danger of death or injury when hitting anything structural or even the water, if landing wrong when hurled from a 50-foot catapult or “merely” dropping from five stories, made everyone gasp and cringe.
After answering numerous questions, Cayard invited Consul General Osher back to the stage. He thanked all for their support and asked everyone to rally the Swedes here and nationally to propel Artemis ever further. He presented Osher with the Artemis flag. She will proudly display this at the Consulate for all to see and to encourage everyone to become a fan. She, too, thanked all for attending and thanked the more than 200 members of Artemis here in the Bay Area for representing Sweden and the best traditions and expertise of sailing. Everyone cheered to wish good speed and good luck to Artemis in capturing the America’s Cup.

Exclusive to Nordstjernan
From Artemis’ hangar
By Ted Olsson

© 2012 Sander van der Borch/Artemis Racing
1. Barbro christens Artemis [wideshot] (12_056769_Launch-Edit.jpg)
2. Artemis crew beside longboat (12_056910_Launch_960x640.jpg)
3. towing longboat against SF skyline (12_055643_Launch.jpg)
4. AC72 & SF skyline (12_059789_FirstsailAC72.jpg)
© 2013 Liza Piroska, Swedish Consulate General of SF
5. Magnus Augustson & Paul Cayard
6. Cayard presents Artemis flag to Barbro Osher