Vasco Vascotto on the America’s Cup: “I will tell you what everybody thinks but is afraid to say”

Posted on 09 February 2011 by Valencia Sailing

When Italy’s most famous sailor calls to talk about the America’s Cup, you answer the phone and write down his opinion. Vasco Vascotto wanted to express his “disappointment” with this edition of our sport’s pinnacle event, claiming he was expressing what “98% of sailors said in private but never voiced in public.” He strongly opposes the move to catamarans and sees it as a “move to penalize” strong teams such as Team New Zealand and Team Origin.

VSail.info: Vasco, what is it you want to tell us? Why do you want to criticize the current America’s Cup?
Vasco Vascotto: You know, I wouldn’t say I ‘m angry but rather disappointed. It seems to me that the team that legitimately won the 33rd America’s Cup then didn’t act in a way to help the sport of sailing.

VSail.info: Hasn’t the America’s Cup always been like that? At the end of the day the Defender does what is best for them.
Vasco Vascotto: Yes, I agree. If they want to do whatever they want, that’s fine with me but then they should expect criticism from the sailing world. I think my opinion is shared by 98% of the world’s sailors. Maybe the remaining 2% are happy with the changes but 98% of them strongly oppose them, as well as at least 80% of the journalists I talked to. Now, if those journalists don’t openly write their opinion because they might be afraid or feel under pressure, that’s another issue. I think I have never seen such level of discontent with the change to catamarans in the America’s Cup during my 40 years of sailing.

VSail.info: This is a strong claim you make. Is it because you are angry you are out of the loop without a job in any of the teams?
Vasco Vascotto: Let me tell you something. I, personally, have never had so much work. I have never been busier in my life and I’m very happy with what I’m doing. I’m just telling you what the rest is afraid to say. This is what everybody discusses on the dock when we are in a regatta. This America’s Cup, sailed on catamarans, will have very few teams and will not even be a cheap one, as they claimed so many times. It won’t even be a fair America’s Cup because we already know who is going to win and this is quite evident. Oracle fought hard in the 33rd edition to have a fair regatta. That’s very good but I don’t think they are now acting in the same way. I’m not convinced there has been any discussion between them and the Challenger of Record and this comes from good friends I have inside the team. Given all those factors, I don’t think this America’s Cup will be a success and so far it has failed to live up to its promise. I don’t think they have waken up the interest for a new and different America’s Cup.

Back in 2008-9 the world financial crisis had already started but there were more entered teams in the 33rd Cup with the AC90 than now. The crisis was already there and in fact, we are now getting out of it. What lacks today is the enthusiasm we had then. Let alone the fact sailors are unhappy. In 2007 in Valencia we had a total of 1,000 people working in the teams while in this one we won’t have more than 100. If this is the result of one’s action that are supposed to promote the common good of the sport of sailing then something is wrong. This is my personal opinion, I don’t wish this edition of the Cup to fail, on the contrary, I wish enormous success. However, I think we’re heading the wrong way. The discontent of the sailors was seen in Key West when during the prize-giving ceremony a person went on stage and was booed.

VSail.info: A few hours ago we had in Paris the official presentation of the sixth challenger, the second one from France. We still have another 50 days before the inscription period ends and there is talk of challengers from China, Korea or Australia. Don’t you think prospects aren’t as dark as you depict?
Vasco Vascotto: They might not be as dark but they certainly aren’t rosy, not even green or blue. Now if someone wants to contradict me, he will be doing like the ostriches that hide their head in the sand. The fact that a few days ago the Challenger of Record stated they couldn’t find the necessary funding means that what they are doing is not attractive to investors. If it were attractive, Mascalzone Latino, a team that has always found the money to take part in the previous editions, wouldn’t be in that situation now. They can’t find money even if they are the Challenger of Record and this gives the event a bad image.

VSail.info: You can’t compare what was happening 5-6 years ago when it was raining money in Spain or Italy to the current situation.
Vasco Vascotto: No, you can’t but as I told you before, even in 2008-9 during the crisis we had 20 teams that had paid their inscription for the AC90′s. Do you think this new format that was supposed to create enthusiasm, has really brought enthusiasm?

VSail.info: However, this time we have a team from Australia, two from France.
Vasco Vascotto: Are you sure they will go ahead? I repeat, I would be very happy if this turned out to be very successful. Forget my personal interest. I express the sentiment of 98% of the sailors and I’m not just sure about it, I’m absolutely sure. Everybody asks why we don’t have a Cup in monohulls, a conventional event that would have provided jobs to everybody. Everybody was ready to start. Team Origin were ready to start. Team New Zealand still has serious doubts about their future. It’s true, there are new teams and I hope they bring fresh air. I still haven’t seen them, I’m not sure they are there.

You mentioned the French. Today Team Energy stated they had a budget of 70 million euros. So much for cost reduction! So much for the fact that we are already in February and we don’t know where the next races will be. I personally don’t see any planning or seriousness so far. I see people working, I hope with enthusiasm but I’m convinced I can already tell you who will win, I can tell you that right now. Don’t forget that the previous Cup was blocked because it wasn’t fair. Tell me that: If Oracle were then Little Red Riding Hood and Alinghi were the bad wolf who is Little Red Riding Hood now because I only see bad wolves?

VSail.info: Even if you might not agree with Oracle’s decision you have no alternative right now. Couldn’t this move be a positive one, longer term? Couldn’t you see it as a move from the bicycle to the motorcycle?
Vasco Vascotto: Saying that we move from the bicycle to the motorcycle is stating that we move from something antiquated to something modern. First of all, let me tell you that catamarans exist since 50, 70 years or even more. It wasn’t necessary to win the America’s Cup to claim you made a world revolution with the catamarans. The catamarans already existed. If the Cup existed for many years in a certain format that means there was some reason. For me, the best Cup ever was the one in 2007. I don’t remember it going through any moment of crisis. None. If you want to change the best Cup in history with something different, you have to aim at something certain. I now have a question for everybody: Do you think that this proposed revolution has brought any benefits? To me the answer seems absolutely clear. In addition, I’m not entirely convinced that a motorbike race is always more exciting than a bicycle race. Then in this Cup the teams will only have 11 sailors onboard while in 2007 you had 17 or 34, depending on the number of yachts each team had…

VSail.info: … Sure but if you now have two boats can’t you have 22 sailors?
Vasco Vascotto: Maybe, but it will still be 22 versus the 34 you had last time. Now, if the budgets are established so that they reduce the human factor, I’m not sure they do the sport of sailing any good. In order to further promote the sport of sailing we should increase the number of sailors on the water, not always try to reduce it. Let’s add engines, let’s add remote controls so that we have virtual races on a computer with no need for sailors. In addition, they still have to prove that catamaran races are more exciting than monohull races. I really hope I’m not the only to talk that way. I’ll take my responsibility, I will tell it to you just as I will tell it to others, because it seems logical to me that some criticism must reach the ears of those in command.

I listened in silence to the criticisms advanced to Alinghi in the past and I listened in silence to all the statements from Oracle in the past. I was expecting from them something better, a little more seriousness, after all the fuss they made. Long live the MedCup circuit, this I can scream clearly, and the fact that we are in a crisis like this one and we have 6-7 new boats, is a clear sign that people want something serious on monohulls, how much people want monohulls and that the prepared teams want monohulls. This is obvious. The MedCup is not a circuit within the reach of everyone, especially in times of crisis like this. Yet clearly there is need for such a circuit.

What I can say is that until yesterday the favorite team to win the next America’s Cup was Team New Zealand and, in my opinion, these new rules were made almost entirely to penalize a team as strong as them. Prepared, serious, with very experienced sailors that have lost but also won the Cup. In doing so they have broken them up. Old sailors that had by now created a group, have been demobilized. Team New Zealand is now a team comprising of few people, assuming they go ahead. It has now lost all its strength. For Team Origin the same applies. It was a team ready to, probably, win the next Cup. By doing so they have broken them up as well, they took away their power. They made them weak just as they did with Team New Zealand. So, if this is the way to win the next America’s Cup, this is bullshit. If we do not like the catamaran, at least let us consider the aspect of sport. In the sport of sailing there were highly trained team, serious, that had made the right steps: they have been disassembled. They were told: “As of today we sail on catamarans. Since you are strong we do it with catamarans crewed by 11 sailors so that half the people you have hired stays at home.” These are strategies and things that harm the sport of sailing.

VSail.info: What about the longer term, not just this Cup? Can’t you see Artemis becoming a strong team in 2017 or 2020?
Vasco Vascotto: Artemis will be strong in 2017? I’m happy for them. I only know that in 2011 the America’s Cup, instead of taking a step forward, stops. Everyone was happy when Oracle won against Alinghi in 2010. We said: “A new world starts, a new era. Finally.” Now I ask you a question: are you still so happy or do you have more doubts? I’m not the one that holds the sense of truth, but I say that the Cup in 2007 was the most beautiful in the history of sailing. Can anyone say otherwise? No, nobody and I am convinced about that. What the next Cup will need, thanks to you journalists and bloggers, is visibility. If you’re interviewing me now is thanks to the 2007 Cup, to that kind of America’s Cup, we have become famous and I am not convinced that those who come out of the next America’s Cup will have the same visibility. This is to let you know that we are taking a step back. And it shouldn’t be like that.

VSail.info: Last but not least, let’s talk about you. What are your projects for this season?
Vasco Vascotto: I will be in the AUDI MedCup circuit with Matador, Alberto Roemmers’ TP52 yacht, that in April will present a new team, a new sponsor and above all a very serious yacht club.

VSail.info: I have heard of the new AUDI Azzurra Sailing Team. Are you referring to that one?
Vasco Vascotto: Well, let’s wait the official presentation before making nay comment. However, I’m very happy because it’s a great opportunity for me to be able to race in the best-organized and professional circuit that exists right now. I will not miss other events such as the Primo Cup in Montecarlo, the Farr 40 Worlds in Sydney, the Melges 32 in Sydney. As you see, I have enough racing…

VSail.info: So, again, it isn’t a personal feeling that drives you to make those statements because you joined the ranks of jobless sailors that can’t get a job in the Cup?
Vasco Vascotto: No, no and no. Look, I’ve got more than enough commitments. I’m fine and I am happy. Nevertheless, I would, probably, do the Cup with a catamaran, if the opportunity existed. But then again, for me it is a big step backwards. Even Team New Zealand will be forced to build catamarans, just like the other teams. But between being forced and being happy there is a big difference and it is something entirely different. I know many people will disagree with what I’m saying and what I said, but I will never become tired of repeating that 80% of journalists and 98% percent of sailors agree with me.

59 Comments For This Post

  1. Norberto Marcher-Mühle Says:

    vasco, htfu. not satisfied? put your guts where your mouth is, give it a try, win it and then you’ll be entitled to do it your way. otherwise, stfu.

  2. pablo Says:

    Bravo Vasco!!!!!!!!
    I’m pro sailor and I confirm that evrybody feel the same!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Heizkörper Sailing Team Says:

    I agree 100% with Vascos views!
    There are traditional reasons, why the cup was on monohulls. We had brillant Events with IACC boats and even 12mr boats.
    Why changing a running System.

    - In this case only to be able to win the americas cup again. I am disapointed in Larry Ellision. I thought he was a sportsmen, who would try to fight a batle. The Americas Cup Final will be onesided and problably as competitve as it was when Alinghi won against New Zealand in Aukland.

    I thought we have been over that!

  4. Mark Says:

    Vasco gives no respect to the talent and respurcefulness of New Zealand yachting and ETNZ. They will compete well, even in catamarans, they will continue to be a reference for the other teams and they will make their fans proud.

    As a sailor and a spectator I couldn’t be more excited about this event – and most people I know (a great deal more than the 2% suggested in the interview) think this will be great.

    His negative, defeatist and whingeing attitude is paricularly frowned upon in New Zealand and Australia. People have no time for that. Stay with the times or get left behind.

  5. John Says:

    Vasco shut up. You are pissed off because Bruni takes your place in Mascalzone.

    Go and play with your toys, crying baby.

  6. Don Johnson Says:

    Seems the old adage ‘the truth hurts’ seems to apply to a couple of folks above.

  7. BN Says:

    Vasco is very correct. Oracle Racing is acting in their own self-interests to improve their odds for a successful defense, at the expense of many other potential AC teams, and trying to leave their footprint on the event. Unfortunately, it is the bootprint of Coutts and Ehman as they stomp the life out of the AC and damage the sailing industry, which they care little about, a while showering the sailing world with their bs. Too many who should know better are drinking the kool-aid and believing the bs or, unlike Vasco, are unwilling to speak out – this is a very unfortunate chapter in AC history. I hope this thread will spur others to speak their minds and bring out the truth.

  8. cupaddict Says:

    Wow, a little honesty for a change. We are supposed to play the ‘exciting new Cup’ game, and its anything but. I have seen the AC45, I am amazed by its lack of anything interesting. Its a standard cat with a wing. And up close its….. blah. The ‘unveiling’ the other day was rather anti-climatic too, the only people interested are Oracle.

  9. tom adams Says:

    If they go from 1000 sailors to 100 that will save a lot of money.

  10. Cup Sailor Says:

    Good on you Vasco, you’ve said everything i’ve heard from hundreds of people since the announcement 5 months ago, anybody who says otherwise has no passion for the sport

  11. Angus Says:

    Yesterday I thought 100% of what comes out of his mouth was crap.
    Today it’s only 99%.

  12. Wanderer Says:

    Sour grapes much?

    The only people pissed off about the changes are monohull sailors… if you’re as good a sailor as you claim, it shouldn’t matter what discipline you sail in.

  13. Erik Says:

    As i have plans to sail in the next cup, my 2nd,i can speak from the sailors who have sailed winged cats, they are fun fast and at times hard to sail. Fleet racing will be a blast but not match racing. Go get 2 Hobie 16s and match race, what will happen is the lead boat will be the lead boat unless someone breaks or makes a hash of a tack, and at AC the guys are too good to make a hash of it, so it will all come down to a break or smash at the start. Cat sailing in match racing is not fun to sail or watch. Saying all that i will be on a team in SF and make my money and go home but it is not the AC i grew up with and as a kid wanted to sail. The Volvo Ocean Race is growing as the race kids want to sail now.

  14. sailmaker Says:

    Vasco. It was now, the defender can have the cup but not the history of an event that it is the legend of the sail. Bravo Vasco!
    Milo

  15. ruben Says:

    Grande Vasco, you are very brave to speak up, as most just speak their minds in private, and that doesn’t help AC much. I trully belive that speed is not the name of the game, but tactics are. It is stange that after the great success of 2007 AC it has undergone such changes, Oracle want to make sure they hold-on to the cup at what ever price.

  16. Ale Says:

    I’m not a pro but I sail for 40 years. I don’t think the catamarans bring technological development in the world of sailing. They are commercially impractical for the size and logistics. Where do you put the rigid wings in your harbour ? Vasco you know what you say. Making the AC without TNZ, or UK, Italy is like the World Cup FIFA without Brazil, Spain , Germany, Italy ….. Who will be the winner, the strongest, the bravest or the smartest or most scoundrel ? Maybe sailing is adapting to the politicy of Western governments …..
    Bravo Vascotto , go on !

  17. KHR Says:

    As ex pro sailor, 3 times olympian and member of one AC team in 2007, unfortunatly I must agree 100% with Vasco!
    Cingratulation Vasco, you have courage to say that !

  18. MC Says:

    How is it brave for him to speak up? No one was giving him an AC job anyway and as he himself says, he’s got his income all lined up.

    The AC cycles. Sometimes its about design and innovation (80/83, 1995/2000), sometimes its about match racing once everyone is in the same corner of the design box (2007).

    Its time to give the designers a chance to innovate. Some complain the AC45 is uninteresting? Its a one design training platform to get sailors up to speed with wings. Its not meant to be interesting. Wait until the 72s come out and we’ll see what the boffins have come up with.

    As for Vasco repeating Ernie’s lies about 20 teams being entered. Give me a break. How many of those would genuinely have turned up with a properly funded campaign. There were 4 teams, and 16 ego trippers.

  19. Euan Says:

    I’ll add another ‘Bravo Vasco!’ Many yachtsmen distressed by the last few years of Alinghi’s tenure now see that round of monkey business as having been relatively minor league. The Oracle Cup is clearly driven by self-interest, and countering the yachting community’s earlier rejection of the World Sailing League, rather than being ‘for the good of the sport’; so why can’t we say that without triggering an barrage of abuse from the supporters of the new format? Vasco might be interested to know that in 1663 possibly the first catamaran in England won a £50 wager in a race from Dublin to Holyhead against the three fastest boats in the Kingdom. So make that ‘new technology’ getting on for 350 years, rather than 70!

  20. Larry B Says:

    I am a “Ghost” journalist. unfortunately I have to admit that Vasco is right.
    We have been put into the condition of not saying our thought
    Sometimes I have to say what others think and not the reality of the facts.
    I hope that this pouring out helps many people to show their disappointment
    M

  21. Larry B Says:

    I am a ghost journalist. unfortunately I have to admit that Vasco is right.
    We have been put into the condition of not saying our thought
    Sometimes I have to say what others think and not the reality of the facts.
    I hope that this pouring out helps many people to show their disappointment
    M

  22. Ian M Says:

    Just a thought, and feel free to shoot me down. Why doesn’t the MedCup include a match racing event like the RC44s do? They could have a weekend of match racing before each week of fleet racing – keeps all those ex (?) America’s cup sailors happy and would be awesome to watch. Have it on short (1-1.5 nm) windward leewards as close to shore as depth allows. Whether it would contribute to the main MedCup, or to a seperate event, I’m not sure, but I can’t help but wonder if it’s been considered.

  23. Heizkörper Sailing Team Says:

    I agree, a Match Serie with TP 52s would be awesome. Eventhough the boats might not be perfect for it. – But it would certainly work!

    About the size of the “americas cup society”, if we only employee 100 sailors, yes we would save a lot of money. But does it not also mean, that this part of the industry decreases (by a lot)????!

    Since it obviously wasn´t a problem in 2007 to finace a Team with a high number of sailors and shoreteam, why to change that?

    Is a reduction in the human resource side of the americas cup really what we want?

    I don´t think it is!

  24. Jim Says:

    Great idea Ian M. The 52′s match racing would be great
    Teams with older boats could be competitive with strong starts, tactics and boat handling.
    The onboard footage would be great also.

    They would need to however find a way so they never crashed! But that hasn’t stopped them last year (All4one vs Bribon)

  25. Roy Says:

    “Every revolutionary idea seems to evoke three stages of reaction. They may be summed up by the phrases: (1) It’s completely impossible. (2) It’s possible, but it’s not worth doing. (3) I said it was a good idea all along.”
    — Arthur C. Clarke (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_C._Clarke)

    Team Oracle’s bold move to take the AC into multihulls represents change to the majority of professional sailors and it’s not surprising that they don’t feel good about it – the stage is often called “Uninformed Pessimism” and is quite normal for anyone pushed out of his / her comfort zone.

    We shouldn’t get individuals’ natural resistance to the Cycle of Change mixed up with what is required to take the sport to a far wider audience

  26. Jonny Says:

    Bravo Vasco, your comment about Russel being booed at Key West was right. this is not a man leading the facebook generation or changing sailing for the better, its a man that people do not trust and are not happy with. This Oracle team also employ people to post on websites and blogs to support Oracle position. Not cool.

  27. Jonny Says:

    I also do not understand how catamarans and wing sails will take the sport to a far larger audience? Because they go faster and are harder to follow on the water? or because they are more like a plane? The America’s Cup and craves consistency not change. It gets unwanted change all the time. Fans want something they can rely on, teams they can belive in and follow. Where are these new fans? I dont see them, I just see the old fans in marinas around the world being more confused and further away from America’s Cup sailing than ever before.

  28. Mick Says:

    I also believe that the cup will be boring and one sided, The only reason that I would get involved again is for the pay cheque. A lot of people from the TP circuit, people based in Valencia STILL and a lot of pro sailors that I talk too are not happy at all. Please let this multi hull A/C disaster pass and lets get back to the REAL A/C the one that we all grew up with and love. The A/C 90 was a great idea everyone thought so, Is ORACLE scared that there might be some competition.

    Bravo Vasco for putting your balls on the chopping block for saying so publicly what so many were thinking..

  29. Roy Says:

    The reality is that no-one knows whether or not the Cup will be boring and one-sided because no-one has seen AC72s race against each other yet. While the closeness of the competition in future AC races is pure conjecture, individuals’ resistance to change is well-documented.

    I’d bet that whether or not professional sailors like the choice of catamarans or not, they will still sail if they are given the chance. The truth is that the success of a sailing regatta isn’t, in fact, what pro-sailors think about it. It’s rather if owners / sponsors are happy (and want to write cheques again to compete in the future) and whether the commercial objectives are fulfilled.

    Hopefully it is not assumed that I am employed by Oracle, simply because of my support of moving the sport along from racing lead mines. I work as a management consultant in South Africa and have no relationship with any AC team

  30. Jim Bob Says:

    I think what Vasco means is that it could be bad for “professional sailors”

  31. Cup Sailor Says:

    100 team members instead of 1000 team members means the salaries of the 35th AC will be edging towards footballers as their knowledge and experience will be so rare. Trust me, cutting numbers of sailors/shore crew isn’t how you save money. Making different generation boats competitive is how you make lesser funded teams enter!

  32. Wanderer Says:

    How do you promote sailing? By giving existing sailors jobs, or creating public interest?

    All the pro’s have too much self interest at heart.

  33. Dave Stringer Says:

    I remember the cries that went up when it was suggested that the boats no longer be made from wood.
    I remember the ridicule that went on when Black Magic, the first boat not painted white, first appeared.

    It seems to me there is a bit of oldfartitus being exhibited by older AC sailors, the main symptom of that dreaded disease being a luddite’s approach to change.

    Taking the cup out of the exclusive realm of individual billionaires, who wouldn’t even blink at a wage bill of a few hundred million over 4 years, and making sure it is still possible for some sailors with a good track-record of racing to attract sufficient sponsorship to mount a challenge, is an excellent thing to do.

    Change, the only way by which ANYTHING progresses, let’s welcome it to the AC with wide open arms and embrace it in friendship; to do anything else proves oldfartitus is alive and well in the sailing community.

  34. Morgan Says:

    Thank you Vasco, Larry is now acting like Ernesto. The multi-hull event was a yawner, as fascinating as the boats where. Muti-hulls are not the future of sailing. What is the ratio of mono to muti-hull sailors, 30 to 1,40 to 1? The last mono hull event in Valencia was the best Americas Cup ever! Maybe Larry should challenge Roman Abramovich to a drag race with his new Feadship!

  35. Jeff K Says:

    Interesting difference of opinion(s). As a lifelong (non-pro) sailor approaching 60 yrs old (and a race official) I am hearing more excitement over this AC34 than I can ever recall.

  36. Rikirk Says:

    BYE-BYE AMERICA’S CUP (for two main reasons)

    1. WRONG PEOPLE
    It’s a fact the owner of the Oracle team did not ever played a fair game in the America’s Cup or in any other sailing competition. He is not like now Vincenzo Onorato (just an example of drive well and pay smart) or all the gentleman sailor that made the history of the AC, a Trophy like no other in any kind of sport. Ted Turner? !!!

    The AC is f*up because everybody thinks short term. Too easy for all those pros saying “I do not care I will get the money and I go home. Too many Mr. Coutts there. The result is that if you stress the Deed of Gift in this way, the AC is gone for ever. It does not have value, even for the sponsors. If you do not agree, think at the last AC and for who has a short memory the 28th one.

    2. WRONG BOAT
    No question that multi-hulls are meant for speed and not for matching duel. This is not like Mr. Vascotto says a switch from bike to motorbike, otherwise we will have a MR with a couple of offshores. The evolution we had in the AC was in developing a boat able to Match Race according to the ISAF Rules. Do you want to go back to the J-Class?
    Now, with this kind of multi-hulls, which BTW are not even close to Hobbies of F40, sorry there is no way to a fair race according to the ISAF rules (i.e. penalty turns???).

    Dear Defender, if you want to race and not match race, just get a C class and do your own Little America’s Cup. Who ever else likes it, free to join.

    I believe all the great and committed sailors around the world that practice the sport of Match Racing and all the official and private organizatiosn supporting this discipline would be very happy to have you out of their way.

    YOU ARE RUINING THIS SPORT!

    At the end is just a matter of people. The ones that follow and the ones that lead.
    It’s our choice to follow the wrong leader just because of the money game.
    But it’s a short cut for a disaster.

    This is not fair for any sport, for this glorious Trophy, and last but not least for our children and the future generations.

    My suggestion, for people that have a real visibility it is to sign up for a petition.
    Maybe will be more successful of the SFYC’s one.

  37. Dude Says:

    Where I’m from, 2% of sailors share your view.

  38. Unique Says:

    High tech winged multihulls restores the AC to the leading edge of everything. Very good move.

  39. AC Sailmaker Says:

    Well said Vasco!

    No one wanted multis, they knew it but went down that path anyways… Personally i don’t think LE cares whether there is 2 teams or 10. They only need one challenger to have an America’s Cup match. They’ll win it and Larry will send the boys and the silverware around the US on another marketing roadshow for Oracle!

    It’s a joke. Straight up and our only hope is that a team with some integrity can actually overcome Oracle and win it. Then act as a responsible entity and restore the sport of sailing to somewhere close to where it was in July 2007 when things took a turn for the worst.

  40. BigRedDog Says:

    When have you talked to 98% of sailors? Or do you socialize with similarly minded people and thing that everyone you have contact with it the entire sailing community.

    The boat turns quick, it will be exciting. I’m ready. The AC is supposed to be the leading edge, biggest shitfight. If it was pure racing – it’d be as boring as the BWR is turning into. I love when people lay down interviews like this when they aren’t involved, cause it only makes all this more fun to watch!

  41. Adam Ostenfeld Says:

    Good on ya Vasco , the Mafia of sailing determined to allways protect the inner core of the money winners may have finnally turned what was a great event which required talent skill and patience to win belieif in your convictions stick to your game plan and of course have enough money to get a new sail or two at the approriate time combined with historic leadership such as Dennis conner displayed in his several succesful wins , today my friend its all about the money , Russel , Cayard , the list goes on and on its a shame and as of yet no one seems to be able to anser the question about how the hell are you going to have a proper match race with these boats as ive said and everyone has said for sure there cool , just like flying the cat over the alps was cool and the swiss were super confidend that they were super good until they lined up against the wing , anyway , keep going look foward to seeing ya in the summer , Adam 12

  42. WetHog Says:

    Haters gonna hate.

  43. drypig Says:

    Wet hog. You have no idea of what the general sailing community feels about the AC and its being held in Multi hulls. If Multy Hulls were more popular then more people would own them. Give us the stats. How many Multi Hulls are there out there v’s mono hulls. Racing or Cruising. Its clear that Oracle chose Multi hulls based on their own agenda rather than for the good of the Cup or the sport. thats their porogative but please lets not pretend this is anything other than self interest.

  44. WetHog Says:

    @drypig

    First, great name. Very unique, but I believe “hugedouche” would be a more suitable name for you.

    Second, you want stats from me but you take Mr. Vascatto’s claim that he speaks for 98% of sailors as fact? Pull your head out of your ass slick or it will get stuck up there.

    As for your argument that mono’s are more popular than multi’s because more people own there is a fine line of thought, but has absolutely dick to do with the AC. How many sailors you know that own anything comparable to an IACC type boat? Something that requires 17 people to sail it, has no motor, and whose weight is measured in tons? Would you put that number at 98% of the sailors you know? How about 1%? My guess is you know no one that owns an IACC boat and sails it for fun. So lets drop the argument that multi’s are wrong because no one sails them. No one but high priced sailors sail IACC yachts.

    Finally, once again, I am not a fan of multi-hull’s in the AC, but I didn’t spend hundreds of millions of dollars on a huge tri to win the AC. Uncle Larry did and by doing so, and winning the AC, it is his privilage to choose the type of boat he wishes to race via mutual consent. The difference between me and people like you, “hughdouche”, is that I have an open mind. That, and the Cup is back in the USA where it belongs. I can live with multi’s so long as the Cup gets a break from “Old Europe”.

  45. Lipton Says:

    @WetHog
    Would you be so kind and tell us your definition of ‘Old Europe’?
    (Cuss word-free formulations welcome)

  46. Blackburn Says:

    Whatever SoddenBoar (mastermind of the ‘haters gonna hate’ refrain) comes up with, will bear little relation to that most original and delightful idea of old v. new Europe as presented by Donald Rumsfeld.

    If Rummy were to organize a syndicate for the America’s Cup: that would be something!
    Imagine the total panic among the citizens of San Francisco … lol

  47. drypig Says:

    back @ WetHog.
    Wow where did that come from. Very defensive.
    Your comment takes a wild angle referring to who might own an IACC boat??? Name calling and everything eh. Very grown up of you. Lets try and have an adult debate shall we.

    The point is that historically mono hulls have been more popular than multi hulls. The reason Oracle challenged with a multi hull for the last cup was to allow them at least a level playing field ( and possibly, it could be said an advantage ) against a superior design and sailing team if mono hulls had been chosen. They didnt choose a multi hull because Russell, Jimmy or Larry really wanted to have some fun on a multi. They chose it to create confusion within the Alinghi team who they knew to be the masters of the mono hull. Had they chosen to challenge with a mono they would have dramatically reduced their chances of winning.. this is obvious.
    So why continue with the multi hull for this next cup? Could it be that Oracle still hold a clear advantage in this type of boat and at the same time Russell gets to screw his old boss and one time close friends and thus getting his revenge for not backing him back in 2004. This seems more likely to me than pretending that all of a sudden Larry, Russell and Jimmy all decided that multi hulls are more fun. Rubbish.
    As i said, this is their prerogative but all I ask is that people stop pretending that this is for the good of the sport or the Cup. Multi hulls are not as much fun to sail as mono hulls or as spectacular to watch. If they were more people would own one. Its as simple as that.

  48. WetHog Says:

    @drypig

    You post under a name used as a dig at me and you now want an “adult” debate? As my homey’s are fond of saying “****** please”. But to your point, OR has chosen multihulls as a way to “confuse” Alinghi? Well thats a new one at least. OR did such a good job “confusing” Alinghi that they launched their tri almost 2 years before the actual Cup match took place. Very deceptive of them.

    As for your argument that Wussel is putting the stones to his old boss and friends, well check out this link. It would seem one of his old friends from Alinghi is doing just fine:

    http://www.youtube.com/OracleRacingTeam#p/u/0/T2MW6PxDbTk

    In regards to OR having an advantage in multi’s, well I could buy that if they chose USA-17′s design as the design used for AC34. Instead, they appear to have chosen a design for their AC72 that looks a lot like A5. They sure put the stones to Alinghi again.

    To those taken aback by my “Old Europe” comment, well it seems to fit so no apologies from me. It fits because it seems to me the majority of people bitching and crying about multi’s come from Europe. People stuck in the past. That, and as an American I get enough crap because on my nationality so when given the opportunity to give back a little I take it.

  49. drypig Says:

    Well WetHog. You really appear very angry about a lot of issues. I hope to have another adult debate with you on the next issue. by the way drypig is not intended as dig but rather lets say a contradiction to your thoughts and opinions. no need for name calling or obscenities.

  50. WetHog Says:

    Yes I am a very angry and bitter person, but I would love to participate in another debate with you. Right after I kick my dog and set fire to the neighbors cat.

  51. drypig Says:

    ha. You americans….

  52. Lipton Says:

    @ WetHog

    Concerning the definition thing:
    I guess that many of the sailors, who are unhappy with the multihull-AC, are Europeans because the majority of teams in AC 32 (which went bust in the meantime) were European…
    So there is simply a correlation between the majority of the people locked-out of the AC future and those criticizing.

    On the other hand French sailors and BMW engineers (mostly Europeans I guess) have vastly driven the development of multihulls so far – but on the other hand Vice President D. H. Rumsfeld defined France, Gemany and Russia as being the ‘Old Europe!

    Very confusing…

  53. WetHog Says:

    Look, I can understand people are disappointed with the switch to multi’s for the AC. I was also disappointed when the switch was made official. Hell I was naive enough to think the “Media Trials” OR held off Valencia to determine which type of boat was better from a TV stand point was legit. But over time I have also realized that the decision has been made, it makes sense to a point, and its final.

    What annoys the shit out of me is when people like Mr. Vascotto get on their high horse and make comments that either contradict themselves, or just sounds like petty bitching. The switch to multi’s might be a success, but it also might be a huge failure. But the argument that the switch will lead to 100′s of professional sailors to lose work is simply bullshit. There were world class mono sailors on board both USA-17 and A5 for the Cup match and they seemed to do just fine learning how to sail a boat with two hulls instead of the traditional one.

    If you are a sailor on a level worthy of the America’s Cup it shouldn’t matter what type of boat you sail. So for those professional sailors left out in the cold, maybe they weren’t that good anyway. Regardless, times change for us all and we either adapt or get left behind. Some professional sailors out there need to stop blaming OR for their lot in life and instead have a serious conversation with the person they see in the mirror every morning about what they want their future to be.

  54. pablo Says:

    I have maybe 100 friends wich they are pro sailors and no one is happy about multihulls!!!!

  55. PlayadelEquipo Says:

    Look, as a pro sailor, I can say this is definitive.
    Most people are angry with the situation.
    The problem is not the boat, sailing cats is exciting.
    The issue is the wing.
    No matter what OR tells you, the cost of competing is too expensive because of the wing.
    You now need 2 different sizes. This creates massive expenditure. For example, you build one practice, 1 race wing and a backup race, and now double that, minimum 6 wings.
    It is outragously expensive.
    As a result there will only be 3 teams. All the teams entered are not going to turn up, believe me. People will go and sail with the Chinese, Aus, Greece, French etc if the opportunity was there, but its not. They are paper challengers at this stage with no money. how does this look for the future.??

  56. drypig Says:

    Playadel

    I agree with your comment. My only criticism would be the cost concerning the wing. Before i say this I have to state that my feeling is that the wing takes something away from this sport and in my opinion is a mistake. However relating to cost… Mainsail development on one or any of the AC teams is a major cost. Lets say 10 mainsails for one Americas Cup at 150,000 a pop. How much does a wing cost I wonder. Maybe you are right but we need to know how much a wing will cost before making such statements.

  57. PlayadelEquipo Says:

    Yes, mansail development is not cheep, but even 10 mainsails at 150.000 (1.5M) is less then 1 wing at 4M+ each. The wing cost is from OR estimates.

  58. drypig Says:

    OK… that answers that argument then. 4 million. are you sure. Holy shit i didnt realize.

  59. d'alba Says:

    Not too sure about what other “sailors” think (not to mention the fact that as far as I am concerned a sailor is a bit more than just a match racer, but that is just another topic).

    as far as AC34 is concerned, even though I disliked the Oracle’s tactic in court, and most US court’s decisions, I believe that the AC should be a tech platform.
    It is so obvious that those slow mono hulls were anything but spectacular, and I love the idea of having high tech new boats involved.

    Does that mean that this cup will be a success? maybe not, but hopefully yes
    Does that mean that Oracle is playing/will be playing fair? absolutely not

    For all the good reasons let’s hope that some teams will manage to push Oracle to its limits, and offer a fantastic display for whoever likes speed on water.
    And let’s hope that Alighi will be part of the AC 35 again…

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