Leigh McMillan and Matt Cornwell from Land Rover Ben Ainslie Racing experienced the ultimate sailing conditions using the wind tunnel testing facility at the Motor Industry Research Association (MIRA) national centre of automotive excellence in the Midlands.
The three days of intense testing and aerodynamic analysis is part of Land Rover’s commitment to apply its expertise in advanced engineering, technological innovation and design to support the team’s ambition to build the winning team for the America’s Cup Final in Bermuda 2017.
Land Rover BAR sailors McMillan and Cornwell simulated a host of sailing manoeuvres and positions to look at ways of reducing the effects of drag on overall sailing performance and boat speed.
The latest wind tunnel testing sees speeds reach up to 60 mph and the smoke effect allows the engineers to analyse the movement of this wind around the sailor’s bodies and the hull of the boat – to simulate real-life conditions.
Land Rover BAR’s wind tunnel testing will increase the sailors’ and engineers’ understanding of the aerodynamic impact that the crew have on the boat, and ultimately its maximum speed.
The Land Rover BAR team head to the New York leg of the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series in third position on 6-8 May.