Kiwis turn to pedal power on America's Cup catamaran

SAN DIEGO (AP) Emirates Team New Zealand has secretly been using Olympic cyclist Simon van Velthooven for the last year to help its sailors transition from turning winches with their hands to using innovative cycling pedestals aboard its new America's Cup catamaran.

Van Velthooven's work with the syndicate came to light in Auckland in recent days as the Kiwis tested and then christened the wing-sailed, foiling catamaran they will use in the 35th America's Cup this year in Bermuda.

The syndicate said it's too early to tell if van Velthooven will actually sail in the cup trials. He tied for the bronze medal in the keirin in the 2012 Olympics.

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The Kiwis believe tapping the grinders' more-powerful leg muscles via the cycling grinding system will be better a better way to produce the energy to power the hydraulic systems.