Yesterday I posted about the new WildWind WildCat catamaran that’s modeled after the Americas Cup AC-45. Let me add a few additional comments about the boat!
The first is a name change! Although the pre-release docs I have on WildCat are all ‘ACJ-45,’ the final name for the new boat is the ACJ-35 WildCat. The reasoning is pretty simple. The Wildcat is just the first of a series of boats Wildwind is planning to release inspired by the America’s Cup catamarans.
Confusion over the name didn’t slow down Orca Flotta and her Triumphal race fleet, though.
They were out on the water yesterday in full force, testing the boats on the Farragut race line in Bingo Strait. Their early report was thumbs up! The ACJ-35 WildCat will now be the featured boat for Triumphal’s recurring Saturday Noontime Regatta.
Not to be outdone, Liv Leigh’s TYC fleet hit the Pacific Start Line yesterday with a fleet of five WidCats!
According to Liv:
“I am still in the process of setting things up at TYC, but my plans with the WildCat include:
– An article to be made about the boat for a number of major SL Sailing news sources
– A weekly series, for which I may wish to attract additional race staff
– Building the class out to a graded racing class and having 2 to 3 weekly events
From that base a large tournament and other exciting happenings are just a small step away.
The boat’s combination of speed, stability on region crossings in SL and relative ease of handling makes it an interesting vehicle for both beginning and more advanced sailors in my opinion. I’d say it has all the qualities needed to become a popular race class in Secondlife. Of course anyone who wishes to take part in this exciting program is welcome to take up contact.”
ACJ Triple Threat
Don Berithos and Sarah999 Aya yesterday also clarified the plans for Wildwind’s ACJ releases. Sarah sent me a note stating:
“… *At first there was misunderstanding. It is that many people have thought WildCat to be ACJ-45.
ACJ-35 (WildCat) : Released. The ship which there is not in real world. In simple small size, the race is convenient to manage it.
ACJ-45 : corry is producing it now. There is not the beta version. The real ship, higher-speed than WildCat. For a sailor liking real ships.
ACJ-72 : corry is produced after 45 release. There is the prototype. The highest-speed ship. Update of ACJ-90.
That’s all. Thanks.”
Don Berithos elaborated on Sarah999’s points. He describes the ACJ-35 as a ‘trainer.’
Don reports that a far more realistic version of the ACJ-45 is still in early stages of development with no projected general beta trial yet and no public release date set.
Once the ACJ-45 hits the water, a third release is planned based on the RL AC-72. That ACJ-72 emulation will replace the ACJ-90 trimaran that’s currently in the Wildwind lineup.
(and if all these numbers are confusing to you, just remember: Wildwind +35 +45 +72 -90. By any math, that puts Wildwind +62 ahead. 🙂 )
critique and response
Although Orca Flotta is about to start a weekly regatta series with new WildCat, she has also been quite critical of the boat. In her view, the catamaran is overly similar to Wildwind’s RCJ-44 monohull in general performance. I admit I independently came to the same conclusion after looking at the performance plots for both vessels.
However, Don and Sarah’s comments above partly address Orca’s criticism, and explain ACJ-35’s positioning. The WildCat is apparently slotted as a ‘simple, small-size… race convenient boat’ that Don also characterizes as a ‘Trainer.‘ With that background, coupled with the boat’s low price, I think WildCat fits the bill as a great club racer.
Orca and Liv apparently feel the same way, given their stated racing plans.
What about the next releases? Well, Don reports he’s working on a fundraising effort associated with the new releases that will donate to sailors with disabilities. I think that’s a pretty great idea, and one we can all support.
It’s still early though, and I think our best combined assistance might focus on ensuring taht all these efforts produce good boats, great sailing, and maybe also provide support for worthy causes.
I often end my posts with the phase ‘I could be wrong…” but I’m pretty sure I’m not wrong on that last part. 🙂