Getting there is half the fun
Published on February 20th, 2021
by Colleen Ligibel, Capital Gazette
What am I doing in a quarantine hotel in Christchurch, New Zealand?
A vintage grandmother in the land of sheep, wine , and all things Hobbit, I am here for sailing. My husband, a frequent contributor to a local sailing magazine, acquired press credentials to cover America’s Cup in Auckland. I had dutifully followed him to his last America’s Cup assignment in Bermuda. Our trip to New Zealand would be a significantly different adventure.
Can you go to New Zealand? Yes. Is it easy? No.
New Zealand slammed the door on COVID. An island country the size of Colorado, Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern called on her “team of 5 million” to endure whatever hardship to keep COVID out. “Go early, go hard” was Ardern’s mantra.
In March, the country closed its borders to all international visitors with few exceptions. Returning New Zealanders and “critical workers” who were allowed in were sent into mandatory quarantine for 14 days. No exceptions. For several weeks Kiwis were restricted in their movement and businesses were closed. The multi-billion-dollar tourism industry disappeared like toilet paper off the store shelves.
The plan succeeded. There have been only 2,300 cases and 25 deaths reported nationwide since March of last year.
So how were we able to navigate the minefield of COVID restrictions and pull this trip off?
It wasn’t easy. – Full report
The Prada Cup Challenger Selection Series began with a series of four round robins (Jan. 15-17 and Jan. 22-24) in which the winner of the series (INEOS Team UK) qualified for the Prada Cup Final and the remaining two Challengers (Luna Rossa and American Magic) competed in the Semi-Final Series (Jan. 29-Feb. 2). Luna Rossa advanced to the Final (Feb. 13–22), beating INEOS Team UK to earn entry to face the Defender, Emirates Team New Zealand, in the America’s Cup Match beginning March 6.
Source: Prada Cup, Scuttlebutt