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America’s Cup: Iain Murray to lead Team Australia’s challenge

Published on November 27th, 2013

Hamilton Island, Australia (November 28, 2013) – Less than two months after being confirmed as the Challenger of Record for the 35th America’s Cup , Hamilton Island Yacht Club (HIYC) has today announced that it has snared America’s Cup veteran, Iain Murray AM , to head up Team Australia’s challenge.

Having most recently held the dual role of Chief Executive Officer and Regatta Director of the 34th America’s Cup, Murray is one of the most lauded men in sailing and his appointment is a coup for Team Australia. Murray’s new role will see him move from event to team, where he will be responsible for shaping the event, and building and leading the best Australian team possible for HIYC .

Bob Oatley, who filed the challenge on behalf of HIYC shortly after ORACLE TEAM USA won the 34th America’s Cup, said Murray was the only man for the job.

“Iain knows what it takes to win an America’s Cup, having competed in three Cup’s over the years including Australia’s victorious 1983 win. We’ve had the great pleasure of being able to work closely with him over the last three decades, and have found him to be a consummate professional and also now a dear friend. I have a huge amount of respect for him, and we’re overjoyed to be able to officially announce his appointment as leader of our great challenge.”

Murray said: “I have long been an avid supporter and ally of Bob Oatley. When I received the invitation to lead Australia back into the America’s Cup for the first time since 2000 on behalf of their Hamilton Island Yacht Club, there was only ever going to be one answer.

“We’ve already had positive preliminary discussions with Sir Russell Coutts, and we are working towards firming up protocol and equipment for the next America’s Cup. I’m looking forward to working closely with the Defender and on behalf of the Challengers to mould the 35th Cup into another magnificent sporting spectacle,” Murray said.

Murray and his team will represent all challengers in dealings with the defender Oracle Team USA of Golden Gate Yacht Club, San Francisco. With over forty five years’ experience, Murray’s competed in three America’s Cups including Syd Fisher’s 1983 challenger Advance . Australia II, Kevin Parry’s Kookaburra syndicate for Australia’s defense of the Cup in 1987, and the Spirit of Australia challenge for the 1992 Challenger Series.

A champion 18ft Skiff skipper with a record six consecutive world titles under his belt from 1977 to 1982, Murray’s also has enjoyed a diverse sailing career representing AUS in the Star class in China Olympics. Further World Championships victories in Match Racing, Maxi boats, 12 Metre’s, Etchells and success ocean racing including winning 2002 Admirals Cup, three overall victories and six line honors wins on Oatley’s Wild Oats XI, culminating in breaking their own race record in 2012.

In recognition for his achievement and meritorious service to sport and community, including design input for the public sector on projects such as child care, retirement and marine rescue centre’s , Murray was presented in 1992 the Order of Australia, AM, an order of chivalry established by Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia, in 1975.

Source: Hamilton Island Yacht Club

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