Focus on Youth Ensures Our Cup Runneth Over

Published on October 13th, 2015

With the America’s Cup World Series coming to Bermuda on October 17-18, the locals will get their first real sniff of what the politicians have committed to. But in this editorial from The Royal Gazette, it’s suggested that the best view is beyond the race course…

You would have to be blind or willfully ignorant not to appreciate that something is happening. And that something very big is about to happen.

A little short of ten months ago, it was said and written in copious fashion that Bermuda would become the centrepiece of world sailing after the announcement that the 35th America’s Cup would be coming to our shores.

Much has transpired since that dizzying December morning in an undisclosed Manhattan hotel, including a glitzy first visit to Bermuda by the Auld Mug. It was a day not easily forgotten, in that it presented our Island in all its splendour and showed off a public that embraced this “victory” wholeheartedly by the thousands.

That was the preamble.

What has followed has been a public who have been oddly indifferent to “that sailing thing”, with the America’s Cup in danger of becoming a political football. That is the last thing sports fans want: their event, and the significance of it, sucked into a vortex of bile, name calling, electioneering, accusations and threats.

ACBDA Ltd, the group entrusted with selling the America’s Cup to Bermudians, has been fighting an uphill battle, but the likes of chief executive Mike Winfield and president Peter Durhager have remained steadfast in their determination for this to work.

As such, the ante has been raised in recent months and as the stars have come to town — the world-class sailors who are now living among us — so, too, has their message begun to hit home.

It is one thing telling a Bermudian public what is about to happen, even with video aids; quite another showing it to them live and direct. Remember, those who still need convincing are an audience who would look upon the Duke of Cambridge no differently than the boy next door, would have had no truck with Michael Jackson if his moonwalk missed a step and would not have made too much of a fuss about the Beatles.

So we appear to have some preordained right to tell the high and mighty where to get off. It doesn’t make it right, but it is informative to Larry Ellison, Sir Russell Coutts and Co that you have to peel back quite a few layers to get to the hearts of “these onions”. They are no easy sell.

But this week, it is all about to change: something big is about to happen. – Full story

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