A blog is not an article

15 Dec
There is a difference between a blog and an article. I know, because I write both but on balance 90% of my writing these days are my various blogs. Blogs, at least the way I view things, are there to provoke a conversation, to get people thinking and talking (and arguing if necessary). I recently wrote a piece about the new America’s Cup design saying that I didn’t much care for it. As you can imagine I got some hate mail but at least I didn’t get a death threat like the one I got when I wrote a piece about whether or not you should wear a lifejacket, but I digress. I also got some emails agreeing with me, but what I didn’t expect was for the major newspaper in New Zealand to pick up on the blog and write a fairly lengthy article about it.

This is how it starts. “A respected American sailor has questioned the design of the yachts to be raced in the 36th America’s Cup, referring to the 75-foot monohulls as ‘some kind of space alien.’

Brian Hancock, one of the most experienced offshore sailors in the States, shared his thoughts on the design on sailing website Sailing Anarchy and said he didn’t believe the new vessels will fix the issues spectators had with the multihull design used in this year’s regatta.” The article then goes on to excerpt portions of my blog and comment on them.

I appreciate that the Kiwi’s are passionate about sailing and they have every right to go after my comments, but I need for them to know that this was a blog and not an article. I did no research before I wrote the piece. I made a claim that the boats would probably come down off their foils each time they tacked and this would discourage the old fashioned tacking duels from America’s Cups past. To be honest I  have no clue if they will foil all the way through a tack or not. If I was writing an article about this I would have called one of the designers and asked them what  their computer models were telling them about this particular point. I could be completely wrong and it wouldn’t be the first (or last) time.

If this was an article it would be thoroughly researched and more in depth. Instead it was just my way of provoking a conversation and that conversation is going to continue later today when I will be on a sports talk radio show in New Zealand to defend what I wrote. If you are (remotely) interested you can listen in between 8 and 10 EST at this link or click the radio station pic below
Meanwhile I still think that the one comment I read in the You Tube comments section was priceless. That person said they thought that the new design looked like a  dog peeing. I thought that was pretty classic. If nothing else it’s funny and that’s the point. Sometimes we all need to take a step back and stop being so cranky. Life is fun and I have led a charmed one (so far). And by the way, had the person at the New Zealand Herald done their research that would have discovered that I am South African and not an American…:)

Here is a link to the article in the New Zealand Herald. And here is a link to the promotional video for the new AC design.

Lastly here is a link to my article that sparked all this.

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This article was syndicated from Great Circle Sails Blog


  1. Skip

    Probably brainstormed how to get more advertising sponsors on the boats and came up with the bottom of the keels…I think they need to put some fine print down there that says if you can read this and you are windward ….tack immediately. If you are leeward, I’m an idiot!

  2. Neil Nicholson

    Hi Brian,
    I still read your blog’s/articles. I find them great and thought provoking. But then I’m from the South Island of NZ. The Herald is an Auckland paper!!

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