6 years ago

November 2017

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New Range Rover and Range Rover Sport Plug-in Hybrids | Why Oslo shines as a beacon of electric mobility | Uncovering Mia Suki’s unbridled passion | How Project Hero is optimising crisis response for the Austrian Red Cross | A stunning Norwegian drive in the Range Rover Velar


LUXURY YACHTS Even during the America’s Cup itself, technological developments and innovation continued at pace, with no respite for Sir Ben Ainslie and his crew. This will resume immediately the type of boat to be sailed in the 36th America’s Cup in New Zealand is announced 44

AMERICA’S CUP PHOTOGRAPHY: GETTY IMAGES In the final analysis, Land Rover BAR fell to a worthy opponent: Emirates Team New Zealand is the oldest team in the present America’s Cup, pioneering flying catamaran design prior to the 2013 event. In Bermuda the New Zealanders ticked all the boxes, enabling them to win the America’s Cup for a third time in 22 years. Nonetheless, losing was a bitter disappointment to Sir Ben Ainslie, the most successful Olympic sailor ever. His goal had been not only to win back the America’s Cup for the first time in 166 years, when the cream of British racing yachts lost it to a lone American competitor in a race around the Isle of Wight witnessed by Queen Victoria, but to do so on their first attempt. Such was the drive and ambition of Ben and the team. LONGER TERM APPROACH According to Ainslie their campaign fell short for several reasons: “As well as trying to build a winning America’s Cup team, we were also trying to build a sustainable long term business.” In addition to building the sailing and design teams, they set up the official Land Rover BAR charity, the 1851 Trust, “IT WAS REALLY constructed their carbon neutral team base in Portsmouth and A TOUGH established the Land Rover BAR PERIOD. THE Academy to nurture next generation America’s Cup sailors. This quickly TEAM REACTED paid dividends, with the youth crew beating New Zealand’s team to win BRILLIANTLY” the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup. SIR BEN AINSLIE Ainslie doesn’t regret any of these decisions: “I stand by them. They’ve put us on a strong long term footing. It was challenging, but everyone is very proud of what we’ve created.” TESTING TIMES America’s Cup history has repeatedly shown the fastest boat wins. Even though boats this time were partially ‘one design’ with identical hulls, crossbeams and wings, there was plenty left to develop. This was especially true of the daggerboards and rudders, the foils enabling the catamarans to ‘fly’ and their complex hydraulic control systems – all cutting edge technology. The new British team’s research and development, vital to the speed game, if they were to match teams with previous experience of flying catamaran design, suffered a major blow last summer when several test foils failed. “That was an absolutely critical phase for making design decisions,” Ainslie explains. “Those issues took us off the water and raised concerns about how we were designing boards, both in terms of their structural strength and their optimum shape. That led us to create appendages which in most cases were too conservative compared to those of the competition, which was perhaps our biggest setback.” When Land Rover BAR first lined up against their opponents in spring 2017, their speed deficit became apparent. In previous America’s Cup races it had been possible to carry out major redressive surgery to boats relatively quickly. By the time June arrived and the teams were in Bermuda for the 35th event, there was little time left for major changes. The ultra-complex foils require at least three months to construct, and the team’s light air foils only arrived a week before the start of their races, with the rudders only fitted on the day of the first race. A tall order even for the world’s most decorated skipper. INNER STRENGTH This was an excruciating, yet valuable, experience for Ainslie and his entire team: “It was really a tough period, seeing how far behind we were and knowing time was running out. It was important to keep motivating people that we could turn it around. I’m very proud of how they responded, knowing the huge level of work needed to change the boat’s set-up. The team reacted brilliantly.” Giving insight into the team’s inner strength and how he kept them together Ainslie said: “There was no sugar coating - we were very honest about the issues we had, where we needed to get to, and how we were going to get there. Team leaders like myself and Jono Macbeth in particular pushed that and showed our support, and we could see the incremental improvements. The shore team, who were working intense 16-18-hour days, were motivated as they could see the guys on the boat getting faster daily. You’ve got to show the path and you’ve got to show the gains. We focussed on that.” PASSIONATE PARTNERS Land Rover has been a stalwart supporter, both as title sponsor and exclusive Innovation Partner. This included developing the catamaran’s complex steering wheels with a built-in twist grip that Ainslie designed with Land Rover engineers to control flying height. The engineers also optimised the ‘human-machine interface’ for the crew members. This partnership has proved to be a fantastic learning and development journey for everyone, and there will be more to come. “Without Land Rover’s support our perfor mance would have been significantly lower,” says Ainslie. Mark Cameron, Land Rover’s Experiental Marketing Director, adds: “We’re united with Sir Ben and his team in our quest to win the 36th America’s Cup, building on the first two years and supporting the mission to bring the oldest international trophy in sport back to Britain.” Well known for his repeated ability to come back and win, Ainslie will no doubt be again reflecting on one of his favourite quotes by Sir Winston Churchill as he looks to the next race: “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” FIND OUT MORE For more information visit 45

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In this issue, New Defender is put through its paces by two inspirational young adventurers as they prepare for an expedition to the South Pole. We also celebrate 50 years of Range Rover by taking a journey of discovery to Dubai. As well as looking back, we look to future as a group of visionaries explain the technologies that could change the future for all of us.

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