sail-world.com -- America's Cup: Alinghi boss new General Manager for Oracle Team USA
America's Cup: Alinghi boss new General Manager for Oracle Team USA
Thu, 17 May 2012
America’s Cup champion team Oracle Team USA has been joined by three-time America’s Cup winner Grant Simmer as General Manager.
His role gives him day-to-day operational responsibility for the American team that is currently designing and building the race boats to defend the America’s Cup in San Francisco in 2013.
Simmer was design co-ordinator for Alinghi in 2003, 2007 and 2010. And in this role won two America's Cups before Alinghi was defeated in the 2010 America's Cup, sailed as a best of three event in giant multihulls. His previous Cup win came as a crew member of Australia II in 1983.
After the devolution of Alinghi as an America's Cup team, Simmer headed up the UK based Origin racing Team under Sir Keith Mills, with Ben Ainslie as skipper. Mills pulled the pin on that campaign after the move to catamarans, saying that it was not viable to continue, due to dates and type of boat, having already spent UKP30million.
CEO Russell Coutts, four-time winner of the America’s Cup, remains in overall strategic charge of the team whilst also fulfilling his role of ensuring that the 2013 America’s Cup is the most successful in the 161-year history of the event.
Originally from Australia, before entering the professional sailing circuits, Simmer was brought into the Swiss team Alinghi by Coutts for the 2003 America’s Cup. He also has acted as consultant to Ben Ainslie Racing, which will be entering the 2012/13 America’s Cup World Series in August. Ainslie, the British Olympic quadruple medalist, is also an Oracle Team USA sailing squad member for the 2013 America’s Cup, while having entered as a Challenger in the America's Cup World Series.
'From navigating the challenger in 1983 that was the first ever to win the America’s Cup in 132 years to his current role, Grant’s capital of experience is unmatched,' said Coutts. 'Few sports I can think of test a team’s talent, skills, knowledge, commitment and management as the America’s Cup.'
'Having won the America’s Cup with and without Russell, and then having been beaten by his team in 2010, I think we have healthy respect of each other’s abilities and what it is required to win,' said Simmer. 'It’s good to be working together again.'