Center cockpit – gone!
Artemis Racing, Challenger of Record for the America’s Cup, chopped the center cockpit out of their AC72. They repositioned 4 winches that were in that cockpit and eliminated two winches and the two grinding pedestals. Artemis now has a total of four grinding pedestals, compared to eight for all the other competitors.
The center cockpit had six winches and two grinding pedestals. Four of the winches have been moved, two to each hull, just behind the daggerboard case. The two grinding pedestals have been removed from the boat – maybe there was no place to put them in the current layout. My prediction: Artemis’s boat 2 will have at least three grinding pedestals per hull, and more likely, four per hull. The AC72 simply requires a lot of power to run all the controls.
In the photo above we can see that the center cockpit has been removed, making it much easier for the crew to change sides during a tack or gybe. With the center cockpit we used to see the crew, including the helmsman, rolling under the wing to change sides.
The photo above is “boat 1.0” – before the recent modifications. We see Nathan Outteridge with the tiller in his left hand. He is holding the traveller (aka “wing sheet”) in his right hand. The winch for the traveller is hidden, just forward of Nathan. There is another winch just forward of the crew at the grinding pedestal.
The photo below comes after the modifications – on what I call “boat 1.1.” You can see the two winches (circled in blue) that have been moved from the center cockpit. Just aft of them is the new cockpit for the trimmer. The winch on the red part of the hull was there before. It appears to be used for jib trim. The bigger winch forward of the new cockpit is probably for gennaker trim.
See deck layouts from all the teams here.