Big day when the big cat arrives at base
POSTED ON 26 JUNE 2012
The build of Emirates Team New Zealand’s AC72 catamaran entered its final phase today with the arrival of the major components at the Team’s Viaduct Harbour base.
At 22m long and 16m wide the assembled yacht is too big to be transported by road.
The hulls, cross beams and other structural elements arrived separately. The shore crew will assemble the components into the “platform” over the next few weeks
The yacht, complete with the 40m wingsail, will be sailing on Auckland Harbour towards the end of July.
With both the platform and wing at the base the final assembly is now in full swing.
Major changes have been made at the base to house the big cat. A 65m structure of 12 40ft shipping containers covered by a tent has been erected on the concrete forecourt between the base and the harbour
A second smaller tent structure for the platform has been erected on the site of the original Team New Zealand building in Halsey Street
When the team moves to San Francisco next year, the tents will follow and become our base there.
Grant Dalton: “We have been working towards this day since the end of 2010. We started building in August last year and we’re now planning a public naming ceremony at the Viaduct Harbour in the early evening of July 21.
Dalton said: “Nothing like this cat has ever been built before. Four teams are in the final stages of building an AC72 – Emirates Team New Zealand, Luna Rossa, Oracle and Artemis
“Three of them are largely being built in New Zealand. Oracle is building major components at Warkworth and Luna Rossa and ourselves are building at Auckland
“Under the protocol the hulls have to be built in a team’s home country. Other components and structures, including the wings, can be built anywhere. It’s interesting that even though the America’s Cup is being held in San Francisco New Zealand is still right at the centre of the action.
“Everything about these boats is entirely new: the design, the engineering, the fittings and the complexity of the build. Right from the start the project has raised a new set of challenges for the team and the marine industry.
“We have even had a team working on procedures to launch and retrieve the yacht. There was no manual to consult.
“A coalition of local companies has come together to make this happen – boat builders, spar makers, suppliers and machine shops. Without their whole-hearted support the build would not have been possible to complete on budget and on time.”