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NZL Sailing's Burling and Tuke to combine Olympic and America’s Cup

by Jodie Bakewell-White on 14 Jan 2014
August 8, 2012 - Weymouth, England -Burling and Tuke cross the finish line winning their Silver Medal in the 49er class © Richard Gladwell http://www.richardgladwell.com

Today it was announced that NZL Sailing Team sailors Peter Burling and Blair Tuke have signed with Emirates Team New Zealand as the team move towards mounting a campaign for the 35th America’s Cup.

The pair will combine America’s Cup sailing with Olympic campaigning stating they will continue to focus on their bid to go one better and win Olympic gold in the 49er skiff at Rio 2016.

It’s an exciting step for the talented young sailors who won Olympic silver at the London 2012 Games and Yachting New Zealand is excited about the potential for Burling and Tuke to improve their skills as a result of the multi-disciplined approach.

'This is great news,' says High Performance Director for Yachting New Zealand Jez Fanstone. 'I am thrilled for Peter and Blair and I think their inclusion in Emirates Team New Zealand will see them develop immensely as sailors which will in turn benefit their 2016 Olympic campaign.'

Burling and Tuke led the NZL Sailing Team with ETNZ to victory in the inaugural Red Bull Youth America’s Cup Regatta in San Francisco last September in a campaign that required a collaborative approach between Yachting New Zealand and Emirates Team New Zealand. They then went on to secure the 2013 49er World Championship soon after.

'Last year we worked with Emirates Team New Zealand to ensure that Peter and Blair could achieve all their sailing goals in 2013, and the results prove that this is a winning formula. We’ll take the same mutual approach as we move forwards.'

Peter Burling says; 'Sailing different boats and combining different campaigns is not new for either Blair or me – it’s something we’ve always done and we both enjoy – it helps to keep you fresh and allows you to transfer skills and learning from one discipline to the other.'

Blair Tuke adds; 'We’re totally committed to our goal of winning an Olympic gold medal. We didn’t quite get there in 2012 and now we want it more than ever.'

First up for Burling and Tuke this year comes 2014 Oceanbridge Sail Auckland for Olympic and Invited Classes (1-4 February 2014) where they will be aiming to take out the 49er class. Both will compete individually in the A-Class Catamaran World Championships which will be staged off Takapuna on Auckland’s North Shore in mid February.

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