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Rooster 2020 - Impact BA - LEADERBOARD

SailGP: Outteridge takes over helm on Swiss team for next event

by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz 12 Aug 17:38 PDT
Nathan Outteridge will skipper Switzerland SailGP in Event 4 at Copenhagen next weekend, and thereafter America's Cup duties permitting © Tomas Moya

Former JapanSailGP skipper Nathan Outteridge will take over the helm on the SwissSailGP team, which is on its debut season in SailGP.

After top performed JapanSailGP was advised it was no longer required by the professional league for Season 3, Outteridge was a "gun for hire" and was soon snapped up by the Swiss team as a coach and adviser for its F50 wingsailed foiling catamaran.

"Outteridge will step into the driver position during the Rockwool Denmark Sail Grand Prix in Copenhagen next weekend but emphasised that his ‘goal’ is to get Swiss driver Sebastien Schneiter ‘up to speed’. At 26, Schneiter became the youngest driver when Switzerland entered the league at the beginning of this season," says in a report on SailGP.com.

"Speaking to SailGP’s Deep Dive podcast, Outteridge said: “I’m just coming in to help as much as I can and really give Seb a platform to work with moving forward - it’s not like I’m going to take over the program and make it the ‘Nathan Outteridge Swiss team', it’s still Seb’s team and it’s still his crew.”

Outteridge, a resident in New Zealand, joined Emirates Team New Zealand in October 2021 as part of its sailing team. He is expected to play a key role in the team's AC40 program and it is expected that this responsibility will take priority over any SailGP role, subsequent to his joining the America's Cup champions.

As well as upping the competition in an already hot SailGP line-up, Outteridge's re-inclusion in the SailGP lineup ensures the America's Cup Champions have members of their sailing squad spread across two of the SailGP teams. As well as Peter Burling with NZSailGP, America's Cup skippers and winners Ben Ainslie and Jimmy Spithill are also helming entries on the 11 event SailGP circuit, ensuring they will be race sharp when they go into the America's Cup events in late 2024 in Barecelona.

The Swiss Alinghi Red Bull Racing team which has been building for a decade, does not compete on the SailGP circuit but is one of the top teams on the GC32 and TF35 circuits, preferring the 20 races per regatta, across four days in a GC32 event compared to the five/six across two days in SailGP. All GC32, TF35 and F50 events are sailed in foiling catamarans, which give some cross-over into the AC75 foiling monohulls used in the America's Cup, and as well as the AC40 test boats.

Australian born Outteridge's first event as driver for the Swiss will be in the Rockwool Denmark Sail Grand Prix in Copenhagen next weekend.

In the 2017 America's Cup he skippered an AC50, the fore-runner to the F50 for Artemis Racing (SWE). In Bermuda, they contested the Challenger Final against eventual America's Cup winner, Emirates Team New Zealand.

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