Could British Engineering win the America’s Cup for the first time in 166 years?

Could British Engineering win the America’s Cup for the first time in 166 years?

Sir Ben Ainslie has launched the British Landrover BAR (aka Rita)- a yacht that combines the very best of British automotive and aerospace engineering skills – and he hopes it will see the British team win the America’s Cup for the first time in the competition’s 166-year history.

Land Rover BAR launch America’s Cup race boat “Rita” shown here being christened and launched at the teams base in Bermuda.

The America’s Cup is a competition not just about sailing but a design and engineering war is fought on all fronts; systems, electronics, hydraulics, computers and software.

Rita will be crewed by six and the boat will fly over the surface supported by high-tech hydrofoils.

While there will be just 67m of rope on board the 15m boat, there is over 130m of hydraulic pipes, and over 1200m of electronic and electrical cabling connecting 190 sensors and four video cameras.
Watch the BAR launch event above

Ben Ainslie, Land Rover BAR Team Principal and Skipper, explained that “it’s a great moment to see our AC50 Race boat hit the water in Bermuda. The launch represents the sum of all the team’s efforts to bring the America’s Cup home, and we’re delighted to get her in the water here in Bermuda.”

“We’re a start-up team, and we had to build not just the boat but the design and engineering team, the facilities and the processes to get to this point today. There are just a few short months before the racing starts at the end of May, and we will be working very hard now on the final development and testing of this boat to make sure we are ready for the racing.”

Land Rover BAR’s America’s Cup Race Boat – R1 – in numbers

Former CEO at McLaren Formula 1, now Landrover BAR boss Martin Whitmarsh explained at the BAR launch that “the emphasis on aerodynamics, advanced materials and control systems means that we’re lucky in Britain that we have excellent automotive and aerospace engineering skills and capability that we’ve been able to bring into the team”.

The team hope that the BARs cutting edge Engineering will help the British team past the qualifiers in May, and playoffs and final in June.

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