America's Cup Regatta Management have announced that John Craig (USA) has been appointed Principal Race Officer of the 34th America's Cup. A native Californian, and a resident of San Francisco, Craig will be responsible for conducting the races of the America's Cup World Series, the Louis Vuitton Cup and the America's Cup Finals.
'I've always wanted to be involved in the America's Cup,' Craig said. 'I've lived in the Bay Area with my wife and children for 11 years and to have this opportunity come to my doorstep is very fortunate.'
'This new look America's Cup, with the wingsailed catamarans, the new format and race course innovations, the media integration, will be incredible. Racing in the natural 'stadium' of San Francisco Bay will put the event in front of an enormous number of people. As PRO it will be a challenge to develop and implement all of this, but I think the result will be exciting racing on a scale we've never seen before.'
A board member of US Sailing, Craig has been the race manager at San Francisco's St. Francis Yacht Club for over 10 years, running everything from Optimist regattas to World Championships for the Star and Melges 32 class. In doing so, he has worked closely with many of the top sailors in the world.
'John brings very relevant experience to the job of Principal Race Officer,' said Iain Murray, the Regatta Director of the 34th America's Cup. 'With the Host City confirmed as San Francisco, it's a great asset to be able to bring on board somebody local with so much experience on the Bay. I know John will build a top team to ensure the racing is fair for the teams, fun for the spectators and conducted with the highest degree of professionalism.'
As per the Protocol, Craig was appointed by the Regatta Director, in consultation with ISAF.