One year until the next America’s Cup regatta. Do you give a s***?


It?s exactly one year until the America?s Cup Qualifiers – the start of the Cup regatta – is scheduled to get underway. ?Five syndicates including Emirates Team New Zealand will line up for a chance to challenge Oracle Team USA for the Auld Mug.

Twelve months out, how is Team NZ progressing in its quest?

To pull out the most obvious of sporting cliches, it?s been smooth sailing. ?Team NZ currently sit on top of the AC World Series after five regattas. ?Consistency has been the key: two of those events the Kiwis have also taken regatta honours, and they?ve only finished off the podium four times in eighteen races. […]

Dating back to the Cup?s origin in 1851, the America?s Cup is a design race. Spoiler alert: the fastest boat always wins. It?s hard to gauge exactly where all the teams sit because the boats that will sail for the Cup – the AC48 – won?t hit the water until next year. At this stage all the teams are deep into the development phase. […]

The leadership of Grant Dalton and Kevin Shoebridge are working well, with Dalton spending a lot of time offshore chasing sponsorship money. […]

It?s hard to work out where Team NZ sits, or any of the teams because of that big point in the design section: the boats that will be sailed in Bermuda won?t hit the water until next year. ?Until then it?s a guessing game as to how the teams are progressing.

With all of their resources Oracle will be tough to beat, more so thanks to a playing field slanted in the defender?s favour. ?Ben Ainslie has put together a strong team, and Artemis will be a lot stronger than their ill-fated campaign in San Francisco.

Dean Barker?s team Japan will get better though they?re closer to the back of the fleet with Team France than the front.

So where does Team NZ slot into that mix? ?A year out I?d put them in the challenger finals with BAR, but beyond that point we?ll have to wait and see. ?If we learned anything from San Francisco it?s not to get ahead of ourselves.

More importantly, can we drag ourselves back from the deep deep disappointment?? Do we dare risk to even start to hope?? And will Big Money win again at the last moment, negating years of Kiwi no8 wire ingenuity?

When the All Blacks lost in France, it took more than one world cup season to get over the pain.

Are New Zealanders ready for another America’s Cup?