Harken Derm

Coming to unbolt another Cup

Published on August 22nd, 2019

It was the Australians that first wrestled the America’s Cup trophy from the USA, and it is New Zealand that bettered another American team to be presently holding the prize first launched by New York Yacht Club in 1870. But now both countries are coming for another of the Club’s prizes.

The Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup, a biennial regatta first run in 2009, will find the host club facing 19 international challenges when the sixth edition is held September 10-15 in Newport, RI. The interest is heightened as the amateur-only event uses the newly launched fleet of 20 one design IC37 boats all owned and maintained by the New York Yacht Club.

The Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron (RNZYS) participated in the first edition but has been absent in the years since. Now, with the regatta moving to the IC37 one-design, the RNZYS returns as one of three teams hailing from Australia and New Zealand.

While the two countries, combined, have about as many people as Texas, they have an out-sized presence at the sharp end of the sailing world, whether it’s the America’s Cup, the Olympics, The Ocean Race, or the new SailGP circuit.

However, antipodean yacht clubs have found success in the Invitational Cup somewhat elusive, with just two top-five finishes in eight combined tries. But this may well be the year the trophy heads down under as the kiwis are joined by Aussie efforts from Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron and Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, with all three clubs fielding teams capable of claiming the cup.

“I have selected the team based on merit and dedication,” says RNZYS skipper AJ Reid, whose crew actively races his YD37. “As a team, we have had had three successful years of racing with some top results. Additionally, we have a good number of training days planned before we leave for the Rolex NYYC Invitational Cup, and we will benefit greatly from some high-caliber local coaching expertise.”

The folks back home can relive the early hours of those America’s Cup victories as a live broadcast on Facebook will run from the first start to the final spray of champagne with commentary provided by former America’s Cup sailors and veteran sailing commentators Andy Green and Tucker Thompson.

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Source: NYYC, Scuttlebutt

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