Potent quotables from today’s Meet the Skippers press conference ahead of the second AC World Series San Francisco.
Iain Murray, America’s Cup Regatta Director
It’s great to be back in San Francisco, World Series event number two. The weather has certainly gotten a lot better as summer has passed on and the fog’s gone and the breeze has gone lighter. For sure the racecourse later in the day will be trickier, the winds a bit lighter, but the racing just as close.
To make it just as close we have more medals … I don’t think I’ve ever seen more medals in sailing than this group, with Iker (Martinez, one gold, one silver) and Peter (Burling, one silver) adding to the field. Even though these guys are new, I’m sure they’ll keep everyone honest going forward.
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Jimmy Spithill, ORACLE TEAM USA SPITHILL
We have been able to get some training in last weekand Ben and Russell have been pushing really hard and I think Ben is right up to speed now. He's ready to go and win. i think we have three crews who can go and win this regatta and that's exciting for us. Personally, I'd love to see all three of us on that podium. But, having said that, everyone’s prepared and has a chance of winning.
Chris Draper, Luna Rossa Piranha
The fleet’s getting really strong now. It’s going to be about getting in good results, but not necessarily winning lots of races. We’ll try to be in a position to win on the last day and if we can do that, we’ll be happy.
Peter Burling, Team Korea
Mainly the speed and angles needed in the AC45 are similar to the 49er. It feels similar to steer to the 49er, so I think we get used to the boats quickly. All the things that make these boats hard are also hard on the 49er. There are a lot of similarities there, but there are also a few differences, like the starts and stuff – that reach out must new for everyone. But just how boat will respond and feel is similar to the 49er.
Loïck Peyron, Energy Team
We’ve been sailing for a week here now, and it’s been absolutely perfect. We’ve done some good training with the Kiwis, Artemis, some of the other guys. The boats are great. You can’t get bored sailing these boats!
Iker Martinez, Luna Rossa Swordfish
I’m feeling great, feeling good. I’m really excited for the practice race today and racing tomorrow. I’m very excited to join the Luna Rossa team. There’s not much that I can say about 45, I’ve only sailed one week, but it looks like a good platform. I’m excited to keep going and go to the big ones. I’ve never sailed catamarans before, maybe a Hobie 18 once on vacation, so that’s the biggest step.
Terry Hutchinson, Artemis Racing – White
I feel like we’re better prepared. The last event, I’m still kicking myself about that last race on Sunday. We had a great start and a nice lead, but weren’t going very well. I think that led to trying to swing for the fences when we tacked away from (Chris) Draper and those guys going up the first long beat. From there it spiraled. In the micro world it’s frustrating, but in the macro world we have (Iain) Percy on the boat now through end of program. We have to keep big picture in mind which is hard to do when don’t have a good result.
Dean Barker, Emirates Team New Zealand
Practice has been good. We got up here last Monday, so have been here just a week now. We had a bit of an incident last week in training. We tipped the boat over in mark rounding, which was frustrating, and injured Glenn (Ashby, the wingsail timmer) and had another forced change (to Adam Beashel). It’s frustrating because it felt like we were sailing better and were looking forward to attacking this regatta head on. Nothing like throwing a few changes into the mix to keep things interesting.
Russell Coutts, ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS
This regatta this week is very important for the sailing team. There is nowhere to hide. Either you perform or you don’t. You either win or you don’t… So our sailing teams this week are effectively vying for their spot on the race boat. It’s not judged just on this event, but it’s certainly a factor. There’s nothing like a real race situation to test your performance.
Nathan Outteridge, Artemis Racing – Red
This is a really good chance for me to join a professional team and see how it works for next year into the Cup. It’s kind of an offer I couldn’t refuse. As much as I wanted to stay with Team Korea, it didn’t balance out as nicely.
Ben Ainslie, J.P. Morgan BAR
To get some time on the water compared to the last event is a big plus, but we still have a lot to learn. I hope we’ll perform better than we did in the last event. I’m much more settled and to have had this preparation is a good thing. I think we’ve stepped forward from the last event.
Phil Robertson, China Team
I think the team has taken a massive step forward in crew work and boatspeed. We’ve been here for two weeks and we’ve learned so much in terms of how to make the boat go faster. We’re excited to get into the racing and see whether we can put ourselves in a good position early and hopefully stay there to the end.