Harken Derm

Long live the America’s Cup

Published on May 8th, 2019

by Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt
I ponder too much about naming things.

I think about Blockbuster Video, which was a catchy business name when launched in the 80s, but that was when the stores had videos. I hear Dunkin’ Donuts is changing their name to just Dunkin’. Something about wanting to be a coffee store.

Don’t get me started on all the “Race Week” regattas that aren’t a week long. Props to Edgartown Race Weekend for calling it like it is. Then there are the Olympic Class Regattas in the sport. Great name to identify the regatta, but they become OCRs when the sanctioning police come knocking.

Names need endurance, which brings me to the 2019 Bermuda 1000 which does not go to Bermuda and is not 1000 miles long. This solo French race starts May 9 from Douarnenez, and continues on a 2000-mile course finishing in Brest, via the Fastnet and the Azores.

Now, few sporting events can boast their number of entrants has tripled from one year to the next. But that’s the case for the Bermuda 1000 Race, which last year attracted six IMOCA 60s for its maiden edition, with 17 solo sailors lined up this year. But I digress.

Apparently last year the course was 1000 miles, and after doubling the distance in 2019, they decided to remain with the original name. Huh, and what’s with the Bermuda reference?

It turns out it is not Bermuda the island, it is Bermudes the sailing clothing brand in France. Since the race website is only in French, the word is getting lost in translation. And don’t get me started about naming a race after a sponsor. Goodbye Volvo Ocean Race.

While the America’s Cup is often thought to be named after a country and not a yacht, it is the oldest international sporting trophy to never change its name. I won’t forget that one.

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