Oracle Teamís AC72 Massive Wingsail Arrives in Bay Area

The 12-story tall wingsail and hull crossbeams for the first of ORACLE TEAM USAís two AC72 yachts aimed at the 2013 Americaís Cup in San Francisco were delivered to the team last month.

The two halves of the 130-foot wingsail for the AC72 are offloaded at the Port of Oakland (left) before heading to the ORACLE TEAM USAís base of operations at Pier 80 (right). Photos: Guilain GRENIER / ORACLE TEAM USA

Published: July, 2012

The 12-story tall wingsail and hull crossbeams for the first of ORACLE TEAM USA’s two AC72 yachts aimed at the 2013 America’s Cup in San Francisco were delivered to the team last month. The components arrived in Oakland from New Zealand on the Cap Vilano by shipping partner Hamburg Sud before being delivered to the team’s base at Pier 80 on the west side of San Francisco Bay.

"It’s a major step in the course of our campaign to win the America’s Cup again," said Jimmy Spithill, the youngest skipper to have won the America’s Cup.

Due to the length and height of the load, the top and bottom halves of the 130-foot long wingsail were trucked through Oakland to Interstate 880 southwards to San Jose. A northerly route on the I-280 followed before arriving at Pier 80 in South San Francisco.

The smaller crossbeams, which will link the two hulls of the AC72 catamaran, were trucked on a more direct route across the Bay Bridge to Pier 80. They will be assembled with the two hulls currently under construction at Pier 80.

The wing and crossbeams were constructed by Core Builders Composites in Warkworth, New Zealand. Under competition rules, the hulls must be built in the country a team represents.

When joined together, the wingsail-powered AC72 will have a speed potential of 40 knots (46 mph). "I guarantee it will stop the traffic," predicted Spithill, when the boat goes testing on the Bay. Under America’s Cup cost-capping rules, teams can’t launch their AC72s before July 1, and ORACLE TEAM USA will have its boat sailing in August to start more than two months of testing on San Francisco Bay.

"After the hundreds of hours of design and thousands of man-hours of construction, it’s a significant milestone to see these components become reality," said design team member Dirk Kramers, who observed the arrival of the components with other members of the design team.