Grant Dalton doesn’t reveal the deepest darkest secrets of the America’s Cup in this 90-minute chat with Mr. Clean, but the Emirates Team New Zealand head man touches on a wide variety of subjects regarding the Bermuda AC, the AC75 monohull, and the just-announced protocol for the next one (natural disasters notwithstanding ? Get balls deep into the 26th Sailing Anarchy Podcast with Auckland vs Italy, trickle-down technology, the supercomputer vs. the mobile phone, how disbelieving the Kiwis were that the rest were so far behind, who nicked the videos of AC34 and 35, and much, much more in this frank discussion with one of the iron men of the sport. Direct listen or download here for the podcast-challenged, and please subscribe to the SA Podcast on your iPhone or Android device.
11:27 Who wrote the protocol and explanation of its genesis
13:17 Off-water battles in the Bermuda Cup buildup, and obstacles thrown up by Coutts & friends
14:47 Why should challengers trust you to be more fair as organizer than the America’s Cup Event Authority were to ETNZ?
15:34 “The most ridiculous stacking of the deck in modern times came from Alinghi”
15:57 How much has Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron been involved in the protocol process?
16:57 About the Cup’s national NZ road show coming up
18:07 Why is it OK to take the Cup to a boat show but not a car show?
18:57 How the RNZYS will help lessen the load for Dalton and the TNZ staff.
20:57 What information did you base your decision to go to a monohull? What’s the real motivation?
25:57 The density of breeze in Auckland and the frailty of the Cup cats. Dalts: “16 knots here would pull an AC50 to pieces”
26:41 On NZ’s huge tech advantage in Bermuda. “For the life of me I can’t figure out how all the other teams were so far behind us”
26:57 How keeping the AC50 would almost definitely guarantee another TNZ win
28:07 How many concepts are being considered for the actual boat? Are ETNZ consulting with other potential challengers besides Luna Rossa?
30:03 Does the design rule schedule mean TNZ and Luna Rossa get an unreasonable head start over other challengers?
30:57 Why can’t you say whether or not the boat will lift out of the water?
31:57 Would you lose Glenn and Burling and the other speed junkie tech heads if you go to a heavier, more conventional type of boat?
32:47 Ashby’s huge beard and his two months on walkabout
34:07 Dalts’ motorcycle crash in the Isle of Man TT
36:02 Bicycle grinders and the openness of the AC36 design rule. “We have no intention of banning bicycles”
38:52 Box rules vs open Rules, and the element in the next AC of “one-design supplied parts”. Don’t want to stop innovation in areas that can help the average yacht racer, eventually.
41:30 Clean’s disappointment with the residency requirement, and Dalts explanation of what he thinks people are misunderstanding about the new nationality/residency rule.
43:24 Finding the balance between a rule that would exclude many countries and one that will help reduce the mercenary culture in the sport, and how to get teams to look to their own countrymen first for crew.
48:07 Dalts: “They commit to a team and a country rather than a worldwide circus where they’re guns for hire to an owner who doesn’t realize he’s getting ripped off”
48:57 Surrogate boats, regatta schedules, and high entry fees for the pre-regattas. “This will allow us to create a financial pool so we don’t have to be beholden to a city for funds.” Dalton says ACWS events were driven by venue fees in bad places or at bad times for sailing. “Make it great for the yachties, and the rest is easy.”
52:27 With the residency requirements and lack of venue certainty right now, how does ETNZ ensure teams spend enough time in Auckland to justify the money the venue will have to spend to prepare for the Cup?
53:42 Dalts’ sample schedule for Challengers.
57:12 Is the Italian Option really just Dalts holding Auckland’s feet to the fire? What’s with the natural disaster thing?
59:05 Two boat testing for ETNZ and no one else? How about a defender challenge?
60:58 There are ways around two-boat bans, but it might not help anyone. Dalts: “SoftBank was Oracles B boat, but they couldn’t get it up to speed fast enough”
61:42 Fan questions begin: Soft sails or hard sails? Hybrids?
62:51 Limiting electronics? More PlayStation type controls? Dalts analogy for ac35: “Oracle were still a mobile phone and we were a supercomputer”
64:27 Sailhandling, stored power and the team’s philosophical problem with combustion engines on AC boats.
65:37 What happened with the AC34 and 35 Facebook pages and videos? Were they stolen?
67:06 IF you can get the media back, will you publish all the video from those Cups for free to the world?
67:57 who owns the Liveline graphics system and do you intend to have them back in the mix for the worldwide audience?
69:02 Free to air distribution for AC36!
74:37 Omega time, Swiss Timing, and how am entirely new graphics system might be going into the AC46 broadcast
76:27 Entry period closes before venue announced. How is that ok? (Answer, it might not be).
77:57 What are you looking to get from Auckland and the NZ government to make the event possible?
80:01 How much will a basic, unembarassing campaign cost? “People will still spend 160 million” to try to win
81:38 Biggest sponsorship mistake made by most campaigns
82:57 Happy to see Louis Vuitton go, or will you miss them?
84:07 Burlington vs Tuke, Mark Turner’s shock departure from the Volvo Ocean Race, and Dalts’ picks for the 2017 VOR
86:42 Uniting the major races, World Sailing, and where the sport is headed at the pinnacle.
87:42 Exactly what they’re releasing in November and how Dalts will judge whether it was the kind of technological success he hopes for.
88:47 What’s by far the most read site in New Zealand (guess?), AC Anarchist Stingray gets a shoutout, and out.
Thanks for all your questions, and head over to the Protocol discussion in AC Anarchy.