Meet Ben Ainslie Racing—Sailing news from the U.S. and beyond
For Americas Cup and One Design fans, yesterday's news conference delivered a nice surprise in the form of Ben Ainslie Racing's newly minted name on the entry list for America's Cup World Series (ACWS) events, starting this September.
|Ben Ainslie, four time Olympic medallist pictured with Russell Coutts, head of Oracle Racing and current holder of the Americas Cup.
Shown here in central London as he launches "Ben Ainslie Racing". A new team that will compete in 2012 Americas Cup World Series.
Credit: Lloyd Images / Ben Ainslie Racing Ben Ainslie Racing
Ainslie, one of the most decorated Olympic sailors of all time (despite a poor-form meltdown last month at the Perth 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships) was actually paid money to stand down from other AC34 teams by Oracle Racing.
Now, as he transitions from his 2012 Olympic bid in the Finn class, Ainslie can expect to be given the keys to some pretty exotic sailing hardware, namely his own AC45, as well as some helm sessions on Oracle Racing's soon-to-be AC72 wingsail-powered catamaran.
While Ben Ainslie Racing will be underwritten/funded by Oracle Racing, Sir Ben's team will operate under the colors of the Royal Cornwall Yacht Club and will only participate in ACWS events—not the Cup itself. 'I would certainly rather that he was working with us, rather than sailing against us in this America's Cup,' admitted Oracle Racing's CEO, Russell Coutts. 'We get the use of his sailing ability in the AC72 program, and Ben gets to use that knowledge in the future.'
|Tennis Commentator, Annabel Croft with Russell Coutts and Ben Ainslie on stage at the London Boat Show. |
For Sir Ben, it sounds as though the time has come to answer the siren's song known as the America's Cup.
Stay tuned for more Ben Ainslie Racing news as it breaks, and be sure to get the full media blitz, including Richard Gladwell's take on the rather strange deal, inside.
|Team Sanya during leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12, from Cape Town, South Africa to Abu Dhabi, UAE. Andres Soriano/Team Sanya/Volvo Ocean Race |
In Volvo Ocean Race (VOR) circles, the fleet is madly preparing and practicing for this weekend's in-port racing, to be followed soon thereafter by the start of Leg Three, which will take the fleet from Abu Dhabi to Sanya, China. For Team Sanya, the first-ever Chinese-flagged entry in the VOR, the pressure is on as the team still has the little matter of logistics to shoot, following a rigging failure last month. 'Right now, we are looking at no more than four full days before we restart and head for China,' said Team Sanya's Media Crew Member, Andrés Soriano. 'Needless to say we have quite a bit on in a short period of time, and we are working hard to tick little jobs off when we can during this journey.' Get the full VOR scoop, inside.
We've been following the A Class Cats over the last week in detail with five America's Cup sailors at the Australian titles. Today we have some detail from Glenn Ashby on why it pays to trapeze downwind. (Don;t be surprized to see Big Ben in the A Cats next year.. )
And finally, get the latest reports from the IFDS Worlds and the Clipper Around the World Race, and also be sure to read about the latest changes to the Bayview Mackinac Race.
May the four winds blow you safely home,
David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor
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