BMW ORACLE Racing victory tour comes to Toronto, Canada
by Tim Jeffery. BMW Oracle Racing on 7 Nov 2010
The BMW ORACLE Racing Team, winner of the 33rd America’s Cup last February, continued its America’s Cup Victory Tour with a visit to Toronto.
Toronto (CAN) - The America’s Cup visits the Royal Canadian Yacht Club BMW Oracle Racing © http://bmworacleracing.com
Accompanied by the famous America’s Cup itself, it is believed that this is the first time that one of sports’ most iconic trophies has been brought to Canada.
BMW ORACLE Racing won the America’s Cup in Valencia, Spain, last February, culminating a ten-year quest by team owner Larry Ellison.
James Spithill (Sydney, Australia) steered the giant, wingsailed trimaran USA17 to a 2-0 victory over Switzerland’s Alinghi to become, at 30 years of age, the youngest winning skipper in the 159-year history of the America’s Cup.
The trimaran USA17 is the fastest-ever yacht the Cup has seen, a trimaran measuring 90 feet in length and width and powered by 68-meter (223-foot) tall wingsail, a wing bigger than that on a Boeing 747 or Airbus A380.
The highlight of the team’s America’s Cup victory occurred in June with a visit to the White House and meeting with President Barack Obama. It was just the second time that the America’s Cup has met a sitting president (President Ronald Reagan, 1987).
The tour has previously seen the trophy taken to Auckland, New Zealand, Rome and Sardinia, Italy, San Francisco and San Diego, Calif., Anacortes and Seattle, Wash. and Newport, R.I.
Amongst the 'Canadian connection' with BMW ORACLE Racing are sailing team members Brian MacInnes (Nova Scotia) and Ross Halcrow, a Kiwi turned Canadian.
Multihull sailor Magnus Clarke (Toronto) was night skipper aboard USA 17. The 18-storey tall wingsail meant that the yacht was always trying to sail, even on the mooring. Spithill handed-over to Clarke, winner of the International C Class Catamaran Championship in August, as soon as USA 17 was tethered.
Fred Eaton (Toronto), owner and skipper of the International C Class Catamaran Championship winner Canaan, gave generous assistance to Spithill’s crew with training sessions aboard his own wingsailed catamaran, whilst Paul Henderson, former president of the International Sailing Federation, was an unflinching friend of the team.
The America’s Cup trophy was made in 1848 by the London Crown Jewelers, Garrard. It pre-dates Hockey’s Stanley Cup by 45 years.
The program at the Royal Canadian Yacht Club included a special presentation to juniors.