Firstly our apologies for the gap in newsletters, however the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race has been the Main Event for the past week, and the Sail-World team covering the event have done an excellent job, and we trust you have enjoyed their newsletter coverage.
Secondly, Seasons Greetings to all our readers and advertisers, we trust you have enjoyed the coverage we have been able to provide, and we look forward to continuing to do so in 2013.
Everyone needs a break, we hope you will be having one before starting back into the serious stuff for 2013. I will be heading off today for a short Christmas Cruise, Vodafone and Apple Mac's willing, there will be some coverage from NZ, but probably no further newsletters until January 7, 2013.
Despite the Christmas Break, the America's Cup has continued to keep its profile above the sailing surface, with the Decision and Penalty being announced in the Luna Rossa protest against Oracle Team USA.
The penalty of being prevented from sailing on the last five days of the next cycle, is very light. Between February 1, 2013 and May 1, 2013, under the Protocol governing the 34th America's Cup, teams are allowed to sail for 45 days maximum. Oracle Team USA, still keep their full 45 days - they just aren't permitted to sail in the final five days of that period.
It is expected that the team will just schedule some maintenance in this period, before entering the next training cycle (extending to the start of the Cup), when sailing days are unlimited. It is an inconvenience, more than a penalty, although the publicity OTUSA has attracted, is probably the more significant downside.
We carry the latest report and link to the Penalty Decision in this edition of Sail-World.com's newsletter.
The new VX One Design sailing on Auckland harbour
Staying with the America's Cup, and in particular the America's Cup World Series, our information (from Emirates Team NZ) is that despite reports to the contrary, no decision has been made on competing in the America's Cup World Series events. The report elsewhere that the the team would be 'boycotting' all or some of the US events, is just one option - even if a Youth Crew were substituted to sail the Emirates Team NZ boat. The team may also decide to sail with its full race crew in the US events.
If you are headed Napier way in the next couple of days, or are competing in the New Year Regatta at Napier - take some time to check out the VX One Design that will be competing. The 19ft one design, trailerable sports boat, is the brain child of New Zealand designer Brian Bennett - and is aimed at providing strict one design, high performance racing at a reasonable cost, and suitable for a range of body-weights and types.
In this edition of Sail-World, we have some more images - ashore and afloat of the VX One Design, and also a five minute interview with the first New Zealand owner, Phil Quinn on the virtues of the boat, and how she shaped up in her first regatta, just before Christmas at Royal Akarana YC in Auckland.
The VX One Design has achieved some excellent growth around the world in just her first year of sailing, with boats sailing in several countries, including Australia. The easy trailability of the VX One Design, coupled with the reasonable pricing, strict one-design and excellent performance will appeal to many.
Looking back on 2012, it will be remembered as the year in which NZ Olympic sailing re-established itself on the sailing map, with medal wins in two classes. But probably more exciting was the performance of the whole team, and those coming through at the next level. The 2012 Olympic team was a very young team - with at least two more Olympic cycles ahead of it, and some excellent performances to come.
The other highlight was obviously Emirates Team NZ, both for their performances on and off the water with the AC72, and many significant achievements - which measure more than favourably in comparison with the other four teams in the current America's Cup, at this stage of the cycle. However Emirates Team NZ's greatest strength is its spirit. There is a great feeling around this team. It fairly bubbles with determination and sense of purpose.
But the real strength of Emirates Team NZ lies at the front door, not in the shed or the floors above.
At the front entrance is the huge list of suppliers and sponsors. It is awe inspiring, to me at least, that all these people have got behind this one team, and all have made their own contribution in their own special way.
Have a great and safe 2013. May you achieve all you want to.
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