America's Cup Prototype boat flips in gusty winds

Auckland (NZL) - 34th America’s Cup - AC45 sea trials
America's Cup 2013 - Well it had to happen. As America's Cup winning helmsman James Spithill forecast, the new high tech AC45 class yacht is a twitchy beast and an incident was on the cards at any time.

Today some sailors from the Swedish challengers Artemis Racing were on board the AC45 sailing in winds of around 20 knots on Hauraki Gulf, Auckland in New Zealand, when the boat capsized, while stopped to adjust the wingsail. No one on board was hurt.

The carbon fibre catamaran appears to have suffered some quite significant rigid sail damage, as well as damage to the catamaran's right hull.

An ACRM Rigid Inflatable helped keep the America's Cup prototype steerage and afloat as the damaged cat returned to its Viaduct Basin base. Another tender brought some elements of the solid wing back to the dock separately.

Iain Murray, CEO of ACRM has just commented, 'The purpose of the prototype is to give the competitors and ACRM experience with these types of boats and wing sails. Fortunately no one was injured. I am confident we will get this boat back sailing very soon.'

The AC45 prototype is managed by ACRM on behalf of the America’s Cup competitors.

Artemis is the third team to sea trial the boat and today was the first day of their session. As has been standard procedure, an ACRM representative was on board.

The Australian and New Zealand teams have previously trialled the boat without incident.

Sail-World's Richard Gladwell is dockside in Auckland and has lodged a report which will be updated with video interviews with Troy Tindall and Iain Murray from America's Cup Race Management.