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America's Cup

Not sure if it's news in Oz but most of the 'American' team appear to be 'Straylian + Ben Ainslie.

NZ were creaming it but have lost momentum.

Spectacular images but it is not proper match racing, i.e. not the America's Cup. All tricks and no magic.

GB needs NZ to win in the hope that they lower budgets and take it back to monohulls.


  • Zero interest.

    For a start, there is no OZ participation so there is no media coverage.

    Second, the event lost its primacy when the Kiwis brought a Battleship, and the Yanks brought two boats - albeit casually joined by something called a 'trampoline'.

    To me, the Americas Cup was about Sir Tommy Lipton, and Sir Frank Packer, and to some extent by Allan Bond and Peter De Savaray, and their Quixotic tilts against the unyielding (though not-completely-consistently-playing-by-the-rules) New York Yacht Club. It was a fantastic example of the technological outer-limits of match racing, whether that be the incredible J Boats, or the less outlandish, but hard-to-sail-real-well 12s. It was about the awesome insecurity of the New York Yacht Club, and pressure that was put on each defending skipper in turn.

    I have a book at home that is neither particularly well written, nor well structured, and is the recollection of a life of sailing by Dennis Conner. There are two startling things that come out from reading the book.

    The first is that Conner didnt see sailing as something to enjoy. For someone who experiences something close to spiritual enlightenment (or the closest I am ever going to get) when the sails fill and the boat moves only according to the wind and to my response to it, it is difficult to understand why he did it if he didn't get that sublime thrill.

    The second is the title (and points some way to why he did it). It was called 'No Excuse to Lose'.

    Conner of course was just one defender amongst a long line, but he also carried the responisibility of an unbroken line of success for 132 years. Mostly he was sucessful, but once he wasn't, and that once was enough to show just how much the Americas Cup was about American sporting primacy, far more than anything else.

    But it is all gone now you see?

    As far the Cup is concerned, the mystique went with the farcical challenge of 1989. Fact is that if you want to watch balls-out maxi multi racing, there is plenty available in the Transat and in France in particular. Maxi mono racing is best savoured when it takes the whole globe as a racecourse. And if you want to watch match racing, just go down to your local club, and watch the top one design skippers go after each other. You will get a much better entertainment than that which is now called the Americas Cup.
  • So no coverage of Jimmy Spithill at all?

    I agree with a lot of Lease's jaundiced view and we have every right to be jaundiced but ... there is something about a close battle in the 12s.

    + if Ben Ainslie can get the money together for a British team then we stand a great chance of finally winning the thing we invented. Ainslie is now tactician for Spithill (after they dumped Kostecki) and they have started winning races. At time of writing NZ need just two more wins to seal the deal.

    Spectacular TV, as I said, but bring back the monohulls.

    This is a car crash, not yachting ...

    2'10" is best view

  • Just looked at that link. Apart from the fact I wasn't even aware it was on, I thought the America's Cup was a yacht race!!!!! WTF???
  • Just went and had a look at Sailing Anarchy to see what's afoot.

    For those that don't know, it is THE site for interractive comment on all things sailing. Anyone ever considering posting there should first be aware that these guys do not hold back. Abuse is the by-word, and anarchy is the guiding philosophy.

    Despite the guy who runs the thing now making squillions from advertising, you do get a fair cross-section of views.

    The general feeling about the current Americas Cup?


    BTW, if you are up for some Web-based action, go there, log on as a newbie, and post "Macgregor 26 Safest & Fastest boat ever made - discuss". The entertainment will last for weeks.
  • I do not believe that turning yachting into 'showbiz' will actually produce any new, enduring fans of the AC. It certainly, as Lease has shown, turned away alot of fans, even when one of the skippers (and most of his crew) is an Aussie.
    We must hope the Kiwis do the decent thing by taking it back to 12s and then losing the Cup. Cowes (UK) 2019 has a ring to it.

    Purists complaining about 'artificial' entertainment: remind you of any other sports?
  • Fully agree with you, Lease!! America's Cup is a legend in Italy after Azzurra's challenge back in 1983 and specially Moro di Venezia 2002.

    We are at the lowest levels since that ridiculous 1988 edition, perhaps even lower. Kiwis now lack only one win and the cup goes back to Auckland. Hope they'll be able to take it back to 12s and make it America's Cup again in 2017.
  • YYYIIIHHHHAAAAAAAA, the Aussies won the America's Cup. And best of all, we got the yanks to pay for it. But one has to ask, What the hell happened to the Kiwi's?????
  • I think you'll find the Aussies (led by Kiwi Coutts) were 8-1 down until the moment they hired a Pom. Sir Ben gave Dean Barker a nervous breakdown, just like he does when he's sailing dinghies + (and this should not be overlooked) the USA boat got a lot quicker upwind towards the end of the regatta. Many sleepless nights in the boatshed, methinks.

    Ah, well, this is it from now on: no more 12s, to be sure. It does seem to have captured the imagination of the non-yachties. The good news for GB is that Ben should be able to get the cash together now for a proper GB challenge.
  • Never give the yanks a second to think. Get'em pannicking and they fall apart. Let them think and bring resources into play, and that's what happens.
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