The buzz and anticipation for the 35th America’s Cup continues its crescendo. Via a veritable world series of high-profile preliminary races, we can see these magnificent yachts and teams in action leading up to the Cup Qualifiers and Challenger Playoffs in Bermuda next year.
Adrenalin surges while watching these super-fast catamarans fly. And fly, they really do. Not only do these breathtaking boats reach speeds up to 1.6 times the speed of the wind, or 55 mph, the velocity literally lifts the boats up so they hover in the air about a meter above the water.
Sophisticated technical innovations have transformed this game. Each is powered by a wing sail and hydrofoils. A wing sail is the same size as a single wingspread of a Boeing 747. Surfboard sized hydrofoils, are able to take up to 15 tons of pressure when coming about.
ORACLE TEAM USA defends their title again in the 34th race, having first won the 33rd America’s Cup in February 2010. That win brought the impressive sterling ewer-shaped America’s Cup—known among yachtsmen as the Auld Mug—back to home port at the New York Yacht Club’s own dedicated building landlocked on Manhattan’s West 43rd Street.
Six teams are taking on the challenge in 2017:
- Oracle Team – America
- Artemis Racing – Sweden
- Emirates Team – New Zealand
- Groupama Team – France
- Land Rover Bar – Great Britain
- Softbank Team – Japan
Of six scheduled 2016 regattas, Muscat-Oman, New York and Chicago are already complete with Portsmouth-UK, Toulon-France and Fukuoka-Japan coming right up. After that, overall ranking will determine the starting points score of the teams in the 2017 Louis Vuitton America’s Cup Qualifiers. Artemis won in Chicago, but the Kiwis (New Zealanders) lead in overall standings.
2016 Races Completed:
February 27-28: Muscat, Oman
May 7-8: New York, USA
June 11-12: Chicago, USA
2016 Upcoming Races:
July 23-24: Portsmouth, UK
September 10-11: Toulon, France
November 19-20: Fukuoka, Japan
The America’s Cup trophy dates from 1851 when it was designed by the prestigious French jewelers, Garrad and donated to the Club. It is the oldest in international sport. Only four nations have won this trophy in over 160-years of competition. (USA, Australia, New Zealand, Switzerland).
All books are available on amazon.com Click on title to order.
The America’s Cup: The History of Sailing’s Greatest Competition in the Twentieth Century
by Dennis Conner and Michael Levitt.
The America’s Cup, 1851–1987: Sailing for Supremacy
by Gary Lester and Richard Sleeman
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