americas cup

America’s Cup: Almost

UPDATE (Final Day): AAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!! We lost it. Dammit!

And I speak for the rest of New Zealand when I say that.

Hey, it was a long and tiring and challenging race but in the end, the Americans had a faster boat and some better technology. You could say, since both teams performed well, that the computer-program on board Oracle beat the kiwi human-element because in the end, the computer based foiling system of the Oracle yacht was superior to the manual old-school method of the Kiwis. And that gave it the edge.

We could point to the fact that much of that technology and know-how was developed in New Zealand, including much of the boat itself, but we should really just say, “Well done USA!” An incredible comeback! And that race will go down in history as perhaps the greatest comeback in the sport, and the greatest win in 162 years of America’s Cup history. 

As for me. As a kiwi. I am just grateful that our puny little nation of 4 million people got to compete at all. And we gave everyone, including the Americans, and our big brothers the Ausses, a run for their money. 

OK some free and unsponsored KUDOS to sponsors of Emirates Team New Zealand.

Thanks to Emirates who sponsored us. I have travelled more than most people (nearly 60 countries) and Emirates is one of my favourite airlines, if not the very favourite. The food is awesome and I love the smell of lemon, or whatever it is, when I get on board. They also serve good wine, btw, despite being based in a Muslim country. On my next flight to Europe I will insist on flying Emirates.

Thanks to the other sponsors including Toyota and Camper and Mud House wines who were the official cupbearers to Team NZ. I just went out this morning and bought a Mudhouse Pinot Gris that I will drink tonight as I grieve over our loss. But inside, I will be secretly glowing to the fact that our little country is still making waves in this world. OK enough free advertising.

Thanks to all who helped this 34th America’s Cup become a reality. 

And Larry Ellison of Oracle, who adds a new layer of smugness to the phrase “Happy as Larry”. I just want you to know that just because you had the means to accelerate Kiwi technology to beat us this time, doesn’t mean that you will not have a challenge next time we meet. Because Kiwi ingenuity is not dependent on a large bank account. Be warned!!!!

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UPDATE (Race 13) : A frustrating day for the Kiwis. We should have won the race AND the cup but we came in under time on the first race and lost the second with a few mistakes. Maybe tomorrow will be a better day. Maybe tomorrow we will take it.

Good on you Kiwis. From the double-hulled wakas to the double-hulled yachts of today, you have been the most outstanding sailing team for the past 1000 years.

 1790 image of double hulled waka in polynesia.

ORIGINAL POST: Up early today to watch the NZ beat USA in the America’s Cup and bring it home. All we need is one more win and the trophy is ours. 

The Americans had had the trophy for over 130 years. It was BOLTED down at the New York Yacht Club where it had been since 1857 – the longest winning streak in history. No one expected it to leave. 

But then came Alan Bond and the Aussies who took it away in 1983. I was in Perth when the Aussies won it. Actually, we felt that PERTH had won it. Horns were beeping all over the city. It was a HUGE event. 

I don’t expect that to happen today. NZ has won it before. But it will be cause for celebration and at least a BBQ with some nice sausages. It starts in an hours time. In NZ, you can stream it here. 

If you have time before the race, check out this video of the 1983 Aussie victory.