AC34 Mark/VIP vessels, seeking perfection

6 Responses

  1. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    There’s something mysterious about the use of the 2nd generation mark boats for VIP hospitality. Ever since I saw hull #1 in San Diego, I’ve checked the following events for information about how someone might gain access and never found anything. Plus when you watch the videos of, say, last year’s World Series events in Italy or Newport, you don’t see many people on board.
    The possibility of riding a VIP boat is currently mentioned at the official cup site:
    “On-Water VIP Experience Upgrade…Onboard a luxury support boat in prime position on the race course.”
    But per usual: “Full details coming soon!”
    Anyone know what’s going on? I know that AC34 once had a Jones Act problem — i.e. can’t carry passengers on a for
    a foreign build vessel — but I think the U.S. Congress fixed that and, besides, it wouldn’t apply in Naples or Venice.

  2. Dan Corcoran (b393capt) says:

    I didn’t mention in the entry. I had more than the normal amount of racing excitement.
    1) A 100 foot cruising yacht weighed anchor and powered in the wrong direction onto the race course getting between the on-coming racers and mark boats.
    2) Next race Oracle hit the mark boat 80 meters across from me, sheering the bow pulpit and retracted anchor clean off the mark boat. Even professional racers cut it to close to the mark.

  3. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Strange! The AC34 hospitality page has been updated with more detail and a downloadable brochure, but mention of “VIP Experience…onboard a luxury support boat” has disappeared. Instead they will be offering RIB rides at $950 per head per race on top of the Club fees. It seems like the new Mark?VIP boats will only get to do half their job. Wonder why?

  4. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Live AC World Series racing in Naples:
    I haven’t seen much yet, but not sure the big Mark/VIP boats are even there.

  5. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    The new AC34 big cat safety rules preclude the mark/VIP boats in favor of good old inflatable marks (that can’t get badly hurt), but I guess I’m in a minority who are not negative about the event now. In fact, I’ve found watching ENTZ race by itself thrilling, and was glad to find that Steve Dashew agrees:

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