The Twelve Metre Challenges For The America's Cup - Norris D. HoytLondon: Angus & Robertson, 1977, Hardback in Dust Wrapper.
Condition: Very Good — in Good Dust Wrapper. Unlaminated dust wrapper a little edgeworn and faded with a little fraying to the corners. Text complete, clean and tight but a little age-tanned.
Illustrated by way of: Colour Plates ; Black & White Drawings; Diagrams;
From the cover: “For those who like yacht racing nothing in modern sporting competitions equals the excitement of a challenge for the America’s Cup. A twelve metre match race is an extremely complex combination of skill, teamwork, the use of the highest and most expensive technology available to a country, understanding of wind, water and sail, and split-second tactical decision making. But even if one is actually there, a view from half a mile away tells one little of what is actually happening — nor do most spectators have any comprehension of the planning, financial manoeuvrings, technical skill and sheer hard work that enables two of the most expensive racing yachts in the world to meet and compete.
In this book, however, a seasoned sailor and reporter lays out the whole story of the post-war challenges, and an artist of rare knowledge brings the whole scene vividly to life by depicting the favours of the different cup seasons — the golden drifting days of Intrepid-Courageous . the bitter grey afternoon of Sovereign’s first defeat, the beautiful symmetry of five twelves in a consolation race, the dance of wind on water and the lean of power in hull and sail.
Why in well over a hundred years has no challenge ever been successful? The answer is given here, by starting at the designer’s drawing Board, following the subtle process through the testing tank, building, evaluating, learning, correcting mistakes, selecting crew and helmsman, and then putting it all together. The difference between winning and losing is often a few seconds over a course of well over twenty-four miles — less than half of one per cent — so very small margins loom large, and Norris Hoyt explains just how these small margins are carefully built up. It is never just one single factor — as demonstrated by Gretel I and Gretel II, both of which were faster hulls than the American defender — but an almost unbelievably complex combination of elements, and Hoyt sorts out for us what those elements are and how they work. It is the inside story by an insider.”