USA Team advances to THE SHOW

Published on January 16th, 2017

The Red Bull Youth America’s Cup was a new event in 2013, organized by the America’s Cup Event Authority, delivering four days (Sept 1-4) of racing during the break between the conclusion of the challenger finals and the start of the 34th Match.

The event was deemed a success, such that eight sailors from the ten teams have now found positions on America’s Cup boats. So the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup will occur again in 2017, with initial qualifiers on June 12-16 followed by the finals on June 20-21.

Among the 12 teams – representing 12 countries – is Next Generation USA representing the United States. The team is made up of six sailors, ages 20 to 24, with many different sailing backgrounds and experiences.

Helmsman Carson Crain and wing-trimmer Matthew Whitehead, a veteran from 2013 Youth America’s Cup, are fresh off Olympic campaigns in the Men’s RS:X windsurfer and Nacra 17 multihull, respectively Tactician Reed Baldridge and bowman Markus Edegran have recently completed successful college sailing careers and are pursuing sailing as a profession. Scott Ewing, soft sail trimmer, is a multi-talented skiff and multihull sailor, and Preston Farrow brings experience on the GC32 and knowledge of the Bermuda venue to the team.

Scuttlebutt editor Craig Leweck caught up with Carson for an update:

Share your emotion on being selected.
I really wasn’t sure what would happen. In the end, it came down to only two teams competing for the USA spot. It could have gone either way. I was notified our team was selected right before Christmas but we had to keep it a secret until the announcement today. That has been tough.

Tell us about your qualifier.
It was last November in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. To prepare, we had been competing in Marstrom 32 events throughout the summer as well as some other multihull regattas. But for the qualifier, we were required to sail the GC32, which is a high performance, production foiling catamaran.

So we had to go to Europe to find one, and decided to work with Iker Martinez, a multiple world champion and Olympic medalist, and his crew on their GC32, Movistar. We were able to spend a solid five days training on the GC32, and then rolled into the qualifier which was two days of evaluation by Hans Peter Steinacher from Red Bull.

Now that you are selected, what’s your plan to prepare for the Youth America’s Cup?
We are currently in Spain training with Iker Martinez and his team. We have a full schedule of training for the next five months leading up to the event that includes training in Spain and Bermuda. Iker will continue to be our coach through the Youth America’s Cup event.

Next Generation USA: FacebookInstagramWebsite

To view the event details… click here.

Background: The 35th America’s Cup has attracted six teams (5 challengers and 1 defender) that will compete in the new 15-meter AC Class, with a series of qualifiers beginning on May 26, 2017 that lead to the start of the America’s Cup Match on June 17, 2017. Complete schedule.

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