Hamish Hooper, the media crewman on CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand on the Volvo Ocean Race thinks it’s time for a change of scenery…
After 50,000 miles I think its time to change tack.
I’ve had enough wind and water to cleanse me 1000 times over, so I feel I’m in need of something a little bit dirtier, a bit more cut throat, a bit more unscrupulous…
So why not give the America’s Cup a go?
I am not the only one from the CAMPER team that is finding it’s not just as simple as changing from a red shirt to a black one. Among the army of black shirts every now and then I recognize an all-to familiar face you have grown used to seeing in red.
As Tony Rae said upon sighting me, “Oh no!.. What the hell are you doing here?”
Joey Allen asked us if we knew each other, I made it clear that I know him about as well as I think I need.
To swing from Volvo to America’s Cup, there is an urgent necessity to adjust to the sheer scale of everything about this new frontier with Emirates Team New Zealand.
Suitably, like everything in America, it is supersized, its massive; from a supercharged boat (I question if calling it a boat really does it justice) to the enormous wingsail- bigger than an Emirates A380 wing.
And then there is the immensely impressive team of 90 immensely impressive people each bringing their immensely impressive skills together all with the common goal of getting our hands back on a sole piece of mystical silverware.
To step into this team and into the campaign now can be deemed a very late arrival. To count the hours that have been already invested in getting the first AC72 into the water and to have completed its maiden sail would just take too much time to equate. And time is something that you quickly realise you can never come close to having enough of in an America’s cup.
To consider that in just over 13 months the defender and the challenger will be lining up in the first race of the America’s Cup is almost an inconceivable prospect right now. But then you get a very distinct feeling that despite all of the brains and intelligence in the corrugated walls of the Emirates Team New Zealand base nobody here knows the meaning on the term ‘inconceivable’.
Tomorrow the big cat sails again, the sailors will be doing their best to tame the beast, the designers will be monitoring every minute detail, the shore crew will be nibbling their nails, the spies will be spying and I will probably have my jaw resting on the bottom of the chase boat with what my eyes are seeing with Dalts in my ear, “Hey new boy!!! Are you filming this?”