Please select your home edition
Edition
Wildwind 2016 728x90

America's Cup- Belcher named as Team Australia helmsman for AC45

by Sail-World on 6 Mar 2014
Team Australia and Oracle Team USA on Sydney Harbour © Andrea Francolini Photography http://www.afrancolini.com/

Hamilton Island Yacht Club (HIYC) has today set sail on its four-year Australian Challenge for the 35th America's Cup in 2017, with the announcement of Olympic Gold Medallist and ISAF Rolex Sailor of the Year, Mathew Belcher as its skipper and the christening of Team Australia’s AC45 catamaran.

Val Oatley, Bob Oatley’s wife, unveilled the AC45 wingsail catamaran, dubbed the ‘little sister with attitude’ to the AC72, previously showcased at the 34th America’s Cup in 2013, at a christening at Team Australia’s Sydney base. The AC45 can go faster than the Manly Ferry at three-four times the wind speed.


Sandy Oatley, Chairman of Challenger - Hamilton Island Yacht Club, said, ‘Today is another milestone in our America’s Cup journey. We’re incredibly proud to put forward this Australian challenge and hope all Australians come together and rally behind us. There is a great sense of pride in Australia striving to win the America’s Cup. Importantly, it’s over thirty year’s since we won it. Our time is now, it’s time to get back in the ring and bring back the Cup.’

Belcher, the 2013 Rolex ISAF World Sailor of Year, Olympic Champion, five-time World 470 Champion and quadruple 2013 ISAF Sailing World Cup Winner, will lead Team Australia’s first training sessions on iconic Sydney Harbour from March to June 2014 with Oracle USA, although he will continue his Rio Olympic 470 campaign. His next Olympic class event will be the Princesa Sofia Regatta in Palma Mallorca Spain in late March.

Team Australia will use the four day training sessions to rotate a number of crew through the boat, introducing them to the AC45 catamaran, as they race against Oracle Team USA.

In parallel to these training sessions, Team Australia sailors will race on the global Extreme Sailing Series under the GAC Pindar banner. The Extreme Sailing Series is an elite level multihull stadium racing circuit with eight events held across the globe culminating with the final regatta in Sydney on December 10-14 2014.

Iain Murray, CEO Team Australia, said Hamilton Island Yacht Club, as the Challenger of Record, was committed to making the 35th America’s Cup more accessible to other challengers by driving costs down.

‘Our aim is to make significant reductions to budgets in the order of 40 percent from previous America’s Cup challenges and we are working hard with Oracle as the Defender to achieve this outcome. In addition to demonstrating technology, we are keen for the immense talents of our sailors to be showcased.


‘Indeed, as a country, we’ve proven we can produce some of the best sailors in the world, and now it’s our turn to build an all-Aussie winning team skippered by one of most awarded Australian sailors. Mat is a remarkable example of an elite athlete and one of the most accomplished sailors that Australia has ever produced,’ explained Murray.

‘During the training sessions, a pool of Australian sailors will rotate through the boat, giving them a great opportunity to practice their skills. It’s a fantastic opportunity to have the defender wanting to come to our shores and spar with us.’ Murray said.

Queenslander Mat Belcher on being announced Skipper of Team Australia said: ‘I’m humbled and excited by this honour. It’s an incredible opportunity and I’m looking forward to the journey, coming aboard and working together with the crew to bring the Cup back to Australia.’

The crew will spend the next four days training with America's Cup champions Oracle Team USA on Sydney Harbour.


The America's Cup role will certainly rack up the time pressure for Belcher as he continues his Rio Olympic campaign.

Fellow Australian Olympic Gold medallists Tom Slingsby, Nathan Ouuteridge and Iain Jensen who all transitioned to America's Cup sailing, they had previously been sailing foiling Moths and the one person development multihull class A Cats over the last Olympic cycle.

Contrary to the belief that Belcher as spent almost all of his sailing time over the last decade on the two person 470 dinghy, racking up a record breaking 18 regatta wins in a row, he was early in the foiling Moths, he was Australian Moth champion in 2008 and was third in Worlds in Weymouth that same year.

It would not surprise if Belcher's Olympic campaign crewmate Will Ryan also joined Team Australia.

Team Australia Crew

Mat Belcher
Seve Jarvin
Sam Newton
Ed Smyth
Troy Tindill
David Gilmour
Will McCarthy
Wade Morgan

Several of the above crew are competing in the JJ Giltinan Trophy currently underway in Sydney. Seve Jarvin, Sam Newton are two of the three crew of 18 footer Gotta Luv It 7. Jarvin helmed the Team Australia Extreme 40 at the recent Extreme Sailing Series in Singapore.

Zhik Yachting 660x82PredictWind.comSouthern Spars - 100

Related Articles

America's Cup - Oracle Team USA - Tech Tuesday - Structural Platform
Learn more about the carbon fiber structure of OTUSA's America's Cup class catamaran with Oracle Team USA. Learn more about the carbon fiber structure of OTUSA's America's Cup class catamaran. How does the fact that the boats are airborne for most of the race affect the hull design, structural engineering - structural engineer Kurt Jordan explains in this video.
Posted on 11 Jan
America's Cup - Ashby confirms that Kiwis will sail AC50 in Auckland
Glenn Ashby has confirmed that Emirates Team NZ will launch their AC50, in Auckland and will do a substantial build up Emirates Team New Zealand skipper, Glenn Ashby has confirmed that Emirates Team New Zealand will launch their AC50, in Auckland and will do a substantial build up on the Waitemata harbour before shipping to Bermuda. Speaking on Newstalk ZB, Ashby said the Emirates Team New Zealand AC50 had been assembled and was having hydraulics, daggerboard systems and electronics being installed at present.
Posted on 8 Jan
America's Cup - Team NZ has a re-think on launch after Protocol change
As a result of the Protocol amendment, Emirates Team New Zealand, like all of the other teams, face a strategic decision Emirates Team New Zealand is back hard at work this week as 2017, the year of the 35th America’s Cup, kicks off at the frantic pace. As a result of the Protocol amendment, Emirates Team New Zealand, like all of the other teams, face a strategic decision of when to launch their America’s Cup Class race boat
Posted on 4 Jan
America's Cup - Emirates Team NZ win 28 day sailing blackout- Updated
The Protocol for the 35th America's Cup has been modified to institute a 28 day blackout sailing period In an deal, apparently brokered by the anonymous Arbitration Panel, the Protocol for the 35th America's Cup has been modified to institute a 28 day blackout sailing period, beginning January 9, 2017. The move follows a Hearing by the as yet unnamed Arbitration Panel for the 35th America's Cup, over the removal of the sailing of the America's Cup Qualifiers from New Zealand.
Posted on 3 Jan
America’s Cup accelerating into 2017
The oldest trophy in int'l sport and a competition that will see six teams fighting it out on Bermuda’s Great Sound 2017 is the year of the 35th America’s Cup. The oldest trophy in international sport and a competition that will see six teams fighting it out on Bermuda’s Great Sound for the ultimate prize in sailing, and, arguably, the hardest trophy to win in sport.
Posted on 29 Dec 2016
America's Cup - Oracle Team USA on the significance of a botched tack
Softbank Team Japan were the first of the America's Cup teams to perform a successful foiling tack in their AC45S. In this video from Oracle Team USA, the team traces the history of the foiling tack and claim that a missed foiling tack could be the difference between winning an America's Cup race - same as a missed foiling gybe had major repercussions in the 34th America's Cup sailed in AC72's.
Posted on 29 Dec 2016
America's Cup - Kiwis put some coaching spine into team
Over the past two weeks Emirates Team NZ has announced the signing of two members to join their non-sailing team Over the past two weeks Emirates Team New Zealand has announced the signing of two members to join their non-sailing team. The roles of each have not been clearly spelled out in media releases. Both have represented New Zealand at Olympic level and in that regard come from a common heritage with several members of the Emirates Team Team NZ sailing crew.
Posted on 24 Dec 2016
America's Cup - Rod Davis returns to sharpen Kiwi Match-racing skills
Long time Team New Zealand coach Rod Davis has rejoined Emirates Team New Zealand as Match Race Coach Long time Team New Zealand coach Rod Davis has rejoined Emirates Team New Zealand as Match Race Coach as the team transitions from testing to training in the coming months in preparation for America's Cup racing in Bermuda starting on May 27, 2017. Davis left Emirates Team New Zealand in August 2014, after ten years with the team, saying that it was time for a change.
Posted on 15 Dec 2016
Oracle Team USA - Tech Tuesday - science of the sails on an AC50
Oracle Team USA's JB Braun presents a very interesting look at the design issues surrounding sail-design for the AC50 Oracle Team USA's JB Braun presents a very interesting look at the design issues surrounding sail-design for the AC50 class and wingsailed multihulls, using graphics and video plus expert commentary. There is plenty that is relevant to general sail design, and also an explanation of how the endplate effect works with the pod on the AC50, plus how the sail designers get a jib to get flatter.
Posted on 13 Dec 2016
America's Cup - More retrospective rule changes split Challengers
The America's Cup Competitors Forum pushed through more retrospective Protocol changes at a meeting The America's Cup Competitors Forum pushed through more retrospective Protocol changes at a meeting believed to have been held in Fukuoka at the time of the America's Cup World Series held in the City. One of the retrospective rule changes gives clear advantage to competitors who have opted to adopt the risky strategy of designing and developing light air and heavy air foiling daggerboards for the
Posted on 13 Dec 2016