Basically you are right.2 catapults initally would seems quite low for a carrier larger than 002.
Shandong has 270 meters in the waterline and 306 meters over all (the 315 meters you can read in the internet are wrong, same lenght than Kuznetsov and Liaoning), so Shandong is shorter than 003.296 meters is quite a bit smaller than the Shandong. What am I missing here.
Actually, i think that it does matter. I think that the US prizes aircraft carriers a lot. Its a kind of national status. For example, an attack on the carriers is considered an attack on CONUS.Whether it's longer or shorter, doesn't really matter at this stage.
Kitty hawk has 300 meters waterline and about 83000t displacement. The 296 meters length sort of matches the data that we have about the 003 being similar in size and displacement (around 80000t) to kitty hawk.296 meters is quite a bit smaller than the Shandong. What am I missing here.