The Super 12 story is garnering international interest, first from German audiences and now Italian as well. Here is the article, originally in Italian and translated to English:
The 12 meters return to San Francisco
Farr Yacht Design has released the first pictures of the new design class called the “Super 12.” It is the boat that will be raced annually, starting in 2017, in the San Francisco Yacht Racing Challenge. It is the brainchild of an old guru of the America’s Cup, Tom Ehman. There will be strict rules on nationality (and other requirements) for the crew. Are these the right boat and event?
Tom Ehman, has been highly involved in the America’s Cup, behind the scenes, and juggling politics and other relations. Though he is currently Vice Commodore of the Golden Gate Yacht Club, the holder of the America’s Cup, he seems uninterested in the developments of the 35th edition unfolding in Bermuda, and instead has raised a “modern-classic” idea: a competition between nations on the same boat. The regatta will be held in San Francisco (for now) and in 2017 (coincidentally, the year of the Bermuda Cup…). Hear what Ehman has to say about his creation, and then we will see the chosen boat.
“[The Super Twelves] return to a sporting competition between nations, in friendship, in the most significant sailing venue, with the best wind in the world. To limit costs and guarantee a level playing field, it was necessary to regress to a one-design mono-hull. In addition, crews must follow precise rules on nationality (they must be nationals of the countries they sail for), there will be 12 on board, with a minimum of 2 men, 2 women, 2 under 22, and one over 62.
To achieve these goals we needed a new design class, which we called the Super Twelves, Super 12s.”
Welcome to the San Francisco Yacht Racing Challenge and welcome aboard the new Super 12 class. Just looking at the plans and 3D rendering, you become immediately aware of what it is: a modern rendition of the glorious international 12-meter class, the longest running class the America’s Cup has seen to date, in service from 1958 to 1987. The boat’s legendary status is one of the main reasons it was selected.
But the Super 12s (which will be built by Westerly Marine in California) resemble old 12 meters: Appendices, materials and many other details, using modern concepts and cutting-edge technologies, make them something more of a “Spirit of Tradition.” Legendary faces with young hearts, Tom Ehman and his team hope the Super 12s will rewrite the history pages of sailing. Will they succeed?
Bruce Farr, of Farr Yacht Design in Annapolis, has been chosen to design the boats. According to Britton Ward, Vice President and Senior Naval Architect, “We are thrilled to have been chosen. This project requires all our history and experience in building the most competitive one-design fleet in the world. With these modern 12 meters, we hope to return dignity, style, and stability to the sport of sailing. “
The goals are clear, but is there a market for this event and boat? Or are we going to see another event with 4-5 followers? Tom Ehman, says it simply comes down to the money, “A boat will cost 2 to 3 million dollars with another 500 thousand for the campaign. We already have several interested challengers.”
One can imagine the interest the event has garnered, especially due to recent developments in the America’s Cup, including our Italian Cup tycoons, Vincenzo Onorato and Patrizio Bertelli. Is it true? We will see.
See the original article here: http://m.repubblica.it/mobile/r/sezioni/sport/vela/2016/01/18/news/se_a_s_francisco_tornano_i_12_metri_-131543422/#notarget