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Grant Dalton: Cycling Sailors will be Thing of the Past for 2021 America’s Cup

The next America’s Cup regatta in 2021 will see a return to traditional arm-grinders, ending the use of cycling-style stations, Team New Zealand boss Grant Dalton has said. 

In the Italian daily newspaper La Stampa, Grant Dalton, CEO of the America’s Cup winning Team New Zealand, describes the change of course to be seen in the next America’s Cup.

Team New Zealand used the ‘cyclors’ – grinders who sat on upright bike stations and used their legs rather than arms – to generate the hydraulic power needed to sail the foiling catamarans in Bermuda to win sport’s oldest trophy off Oracle Team USA in June. “The grinders will return,” Dalton told.

TNZ, who are still working through the competition rules with the challenger of record, Italy’s Luna Rossa, have confirmed the next America’s Cup will be sailed in large and powerful monohulls, a development class.

Dalton said the conditions on Auckland’s Waitemata Harbour were not conducive to sailing the catamarans. “We believe our design team is capable of giving us another great yacht, and that catamarans wouldn’t be ideal for the (choppy sea state) in Auckland,” he added.

One thing Dalton confirmed is that there will be rules around how many of the sailors must hold a passport for the team they are sailing for. He said the quota will only apply to the people on the boat, and not design and support teams. He stopped short of saying what that percentage would be.

Team New Zealand will release the plans for the America’s Cup next week, but the final design rules are not expected until Nov. 30.

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