I’d dreamed of cruising under sail since Irving Johnson’s voyages aboard Yankee captivated me as a child. By 1971 my husband, George Maynard, and I — both Illinois-raised landlubbers — realized the only way we could afford similar exploits was in a sailboat we built ourselves.
We built an engineless wooden reproduction of Joshua Slocum’s yawl Spray in our Noank, Conn., back yard and sailed Scud around the world with our three children on a five-year voyage.
Oracle Team USA sailed “low and fast” in eight consecutive races to foil New Zealand’s America’s Cup dream
The 34th America’s Cup was supposed to be the most spectacular ever. It almost went down in Cup history as the biggest bomb ever. Instead it will rank as one of sports’ most improbable comebacks: Oracle Team USA fights back from an 8-1 deficit to snatch the Auld Mug from Emirates Team New Zealand, 9-8.
I was in San Francisco for the first week of the America’s Cup doing a fair amount of corporate entertainment. Running back and forth from Pier 27 to the Marina Green, to Crissy Field, the top of the Transamerica building, St. Francis Yacht Club and out on the water, I saw the racing from many vantage points.
Incredibly, they were all great, proving that San Francisco is truly an amphitheater for sailing.
The 34th America’s Cup in San Francisco was certainly exciting to watch. The two high-tech catamarans competing at speeds often in excess of 40 knots were close enough in performance to make it a very tight match. The script could not have been written any better, with Oracle down 8-1 and staging a comeback to beat the Kiwis in the last and deciding race for a 9-8 series win.
First, I should say that having raced in eight America’s Cup campaigns and having qualified to race in five America’s Cup finals from 1980 to 2003 doesn’t necessarily qualify me to speculate on the future of the Cup.
In the past, the America’s Cup has been about nationality, technology and team and generally has been raced by relatively “financially equipped” enthusiasts.
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