by Ken Read
Team Objective - Australia looking like they’ve been sailing the AC45 for years, rather than days - Red Bull Youth America’s Cup
North Sails President and TV Commentary Team member, Ken Read gives his insider's view of the Louis Vuitton Cup:
RBYAC - Welcome to The Show!
PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG, skipper Ken Read from the USA is interviewed, after finishing second on leg 4 from Sanya, China to Auckland, New Zealand, during the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12. (Credit: Marc Bow/Volvo Ocean Race)
WELCOME TO THE SHOW!!!
Those were the words of Ian Murray, event organizer of the imminent Red Bull Youth America's Cup. Ian was addressing the skippers and managers of each team this morning.
These kids are involved in an event that will be the time of their lives - to this point. I think they are handling all of the craziness as well as could ever be expected.
10 Teams from around the world. All under the age of 25. All went through a trials period and were chosen because of their talent.
And all are finding out that an event like this is about a LOT more than sailing - press functions, fundraising, dock out shows and TV. The list of 'to-do's' for the sailors at this morning's briefing was staggering. This ain't your standard Laser regatta where you put in your boat, get dressed, and go!
My guess is that the teams that have a great foundation on-shore will do best. When I have been successful at events like The Show I have completely relied on others to tell me where to be and when to be there- allowing me to concentrate on the sailing for as much of the time as possible. I've shared that experience with both the American Teams in the last 24 hours. Don't get caught up in the hype. Listen to your coaches, go sailing and have fun. Sure you will get dragged around from function to function as a bit of a show pony, but that is part of The Show - so get used to it and keep your eye on the prize!
All Red Bull Youth America's Cup broadcasts will air live on ESPN3 (web-based ESPN), with Todd Harris and yours truly making the calls. We will also welcome a guest commentator to the panel and let them tell the story from an entirely different perspective. Stay tuned.
Ken will also be posting Cup 'insider updates' on Facebook: www.facebook.com/kennyreadsailor and www.facebook.com/NorthSailsUSA.