Emirates Team New Zealand launch another vitally important vessel for the 36th America’s Cup . . .
On the tail end of ETNZ’s launch of their new test boat Te Kāhu, the new Broadcast Platform, Manu-Wai, was also launched and christened by Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei.
Drones and helicopters are vital for capturing on-water action, but to get the fans right into the middle of the show, it’s hard to beat filming a boat race with a boat.
Those with an eye for detail or a bit of a thing for America’s Cup history will notice something familiar about Manu-Wai.
This is the 5th time the boat has been recycled within the America’s Cup and the 2nd time ETNZ has repurposed her and kept her sailing.
Manu-Wai began life in 2011 as Team Korea’s AC45 during the 2011-12 ACWS ahead of the 34th America’s Cup in San Francisco. With a young Peter Burling at the helm they came 6th in the series.
In the 2012-13 ACWS, it was recycled by Team Energy sailing for France where it again came 6th.
It was then bought by Team Australia, who were the initial Challenger of Record for the 35th America’s Cup, but withdrew from the competition.
ETNZ then picked it up and without skipping a beat the AC45F was upcycled into the teams vitally important ‘boat 1’ for design and development ahead of their race boat for Bermuda.
The hulls of Boat 1 then remained in storage until the middle of last year where they were pulled out and used as the foundation for the new broadcast platform with some additional chines and other modifications.
After all, what better way to keep up with AC boats doing AC speeds than with a previous AC class yacht- albeit powered by twin 250’s instead of the wind.
And ETNZ get top brownie points for great re-cycling . . .