One Year Anniversary of Kiwi Glory
Published on June 26th, 2018
A year ago on June 26 in Bermuda marked the moment when Emirates Team New Zealand overwhelmingly wrenched the America’s Cup from Oracle Team USA’s iron grip on the tropical turquoise waters of Bermuda’s Great Sound.
It was a world away from the deep dark winter in New Zealand.
Millions of kiwis were waking up in the cold early hours of June 27, putting their kettles on and settling in on the edge of their seats in nervous anticipation that the 35th America’s Cup would be over before sunrise.
Uneasy feelings of Déjà vu from San Francisco four years prior actively suppressed.
Back in Bermuda, the day seemed like any other day for Emirates Team New Zealand, going about their collective routine; the difference was the deep-seated belief in having a faster boat, better sailors and a better team than their nemesis Oracle across the water.
No bravado needed, just each other, the support of the nation and enough of a start to put Emirates Team New Zealand in a position to once again pounce on Oracle and land the race 9 knockout blow.
Seventy-eight seconds into the race it came.
Oracle leading around mark one, heading downwind getting set to lead the gybe into Mark 2. They look back, Emirates Team New Zealand had already gybed without signal. A no-look gybe practiced tirelessly in the seclusion of Auckland months prior left the Americans aghast. The all too familiar sight of the Emirates Team New Zealand transom their view once more.
Meanwhile, onboard the Emirates Team New Zealand chase boats and back in the base fingernails were long gone and shoulders still tensed.
A clean rounding of the final reach mark before thoughts dared think the 14 year endeavor to reclaim the Auld Mug was imminently over.
As Glenn Ashby, Peter Burling and the now infamous cyclors flew ‘Aotearoa’ across the finish line, an overwhelming sense of pure relief descended on a team not renowned for its emotion.
The vibrations and ringtones orchestrated from within the pockets of all of the team and its supporters in Bermuda as family and friends back home rang through to be part of the celebration.
Peter Burling assured the international press the team would certainly be celebrating the sweetest of victories long into the night in a way only kiwis would understand.
Bombs off the dock, kids cricket on the forecourt and a traditional Emirates Team New Zealand end of regatta eating competition of a pie, lamington, and a bottle of Steinlager off the saddle of the cyclors beloved Watt Bikes.
The hazy next morning and the realization that like a desert oasis, the finish line of the 35th America’s Cup had just transitioned to the start gun of the 36th America’s Cup.
No rules, no roadmap, just a Challenge and a trophy and an opportunity to make the 36th America’s Cup in New Zealand the best in its long and colorful history.
Reflecting on the one year anniversary of New Zealand’s win in Bermuda, one of the team’s most resolute sponsors, Toyota New Zealand, announce their continued support for Emirates Team New Zealand for the 36th America’s Cup.
The 2021 Cup defence in Auckland will be the eighth America’s Cup campaign that Toyota New Zealand has been involved in, making it the longest continuous sports sponsorship in the country.
“We’ve been proud and honoured to stick with the team through thick and thin,” said Andrew Davis, the General Manager of Marketing for Toyota New Zealand.
New Zealand is the second most successful country in the 167-year history of the America’s Cup (after America) and is the only country to successfully challenge for the “Auld Mug” on more than one occasion.
“The team has achieved a remarkable success in a short time and it is the people who have gone the extra mile to deliver great results,” said Davis.
Key America’s Cup dates:
✔ September 28, 2017: 36th America’s Cup Protocol released
✔ November 30, 2017: AC75 Class concepts released to key stakeholders
✔ January 1, 2018: Entries for Challengers open
✔ March 31, 2018: AC75 Class Rule published
June 30, 2018: Entries for Challengers close
August 31, 2018: Location of the America’s Cup Match and The PRADA Cup confirmed
August 31, 2018: Specific race course area confirmed
December 31, 2018: Late entries deadline
March 31, 2019: Boat 1 can be launched
2nd half of 2019: 2 x America’s Cup World Series Preliminary Events
February 1, 2020: Boat 2 can be launched
During 2020: 3 x America’s Cup World Series Preliminary Events
December 10-20, 2020: America’s Cup Christmas Race
January and February 2021: The PRADA Cup Challenger Selection Series
March 2021: The America’s Cup Match