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On the Bay

Wings on and over the bay

Up-close racing thrills return this month photo: Gilles Martin-Raget / ACEA

The second installment of the America’s Cup World Series (ACWS) 2012-2013 season returns to San Francisco Bay Oct. 2–7, together with the ever-popular Fleet Week – which means wings will be sailing across and over the Bay throughout the week.

For those who might have missed the first series of the ACWS in August, the new America’s Cup boats currently being raced are 42-foot hi-tech, multi-hulled catamarans with a 70-plus-foot-tall articulated wing in place of a mainsail. These boats are capable of generating speeds nearly three times that of the wind, reaching speeds of 25 to 40 knots (46 mph) and are sailed by an athletic crew of five.

The October series will be sharing the Bay with the Blue Angels, who by comparison will be tearing across the skies in Boeing F/A-18 Hornets with a wingspan of 40.4 feet and capable of speeds in excess of Mach 1.7 (1,294 mph!).

In order to better accommodate the expected crowds, as well as juggle the schedules of both events, this month’s series will see some significant changes. The America’s Cup Village will be located at the Little Marina Green at the west of the harbor near the St. Francis Yacht Club. The Village is open and free to the public daily from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Racing will also be later in the afternoon than in August – starting at 4 p.m. after the Blue Angels air shows, except for Sunday’s fleet race finals, which are scheduled for 1:50 p.m. The match race finals will also be held on Saturday afternoon. An overview of the race schedule follows this article, but it is subject to change dependent on weather conditions, so check the online schedule for a full list of details.

This series also sees a few changes in team line-ups. Artemis Racing (Sweden), the challenger of record for the America’s Cup, will have their second entry in the field skippered by new team member Nathan Outteridge, gold medalist in the 49er class at the London Olympics. Outteridge also led Team Korea to a third-place finish in fleet racing during the August ACWS. He is replaced on Team Korea by helmsman Peter Burling, who took the silver medal in the 49er class in London, and at only 21 years of age is the youngest skipper in the competition.

In October, the Bay will once again be home to “the world’s best sailors” on “the world’s fastest boats.” Better get down to the Bay early for a seat, or catch the racing live on the web and on NBC on Sunday.

ACWS SCHEDULE

Tuesday, Oct. 2
11:00 America’s Cup Morning Show
(Daily and repeats throughout the day)
16:00 Practice racing (until 18:00)

Wednesday, Oct. 3
15:00 Team introductions, commentary
16:00 Match Racing Qualifiers 1 – 7
18:15 America’s Cup Dock-in Show

Thursday, Oct. 4
11:30 Pre-race “fly-by” of teams and introduction
12:20 Match race quarterfinals 1 and 2
13:00 Blue Angels practice
16:45 Team introductions / commentary
17:10 Fleet races 1 and 2

Friday, Oct. 5
11:25 Healthy Ocean Project Show
12:30 Fleet Week air show practice (until 16:00)
16:00 Match race quarterfinals 3 and 4
16:50 Fleet races 3 and 4

Saturday, Oct. 6
11:00 Fleet Week parade of ships
12:30 Fleet Week air show
16:05 Match race semifinals
16:50 Fleet races 5 and 6
18:10 Match race final
18:45 America’s Cup Dock-in Show and awards

Sunday, Oct. 7
12:10 Fleet Week Air Show
13:45 Team introductions, commentary
13:50 Super Sunday fleet race 7
14:30 Fleet Week air show
16:30 America’s Cup World Series awards

For up-to-date race information, visit www.americascup.com.

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