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Replica of America’s Cup namesake for sale

A replica of the schooner America, the boat for which the America’s Cup is named, is to be sold at a public auction Dec. 14 in London.

While still seaworthy, owners of the 130-foot gaff rigged schooner have put together a plan to refit the boat to make it a unique viewing platform for the 2007 America’s Cup, and intend to sell the boat with those plans, a news release says. America is owned by the Hukka Trust of New Zealand, and is managed by Midsummer Shipping SA, a Swiss company.

The auction is scheduled to take place at the Royal Thames Yacht Club, and will be conducted by Nicholas Bonham, former chairman of Bonham Auctioneers. “She is a breathtaking boat that has been built in the spirit of tradition,” Bonham says of America in the release. “Despite her being a replica she is [recognized] by the yachting world as authentic and her sale will cause an enormous ‘noise’ amongst yachting communities around the world.”

The original America was destroyed in 1942 and the replica was commissioned by an American yachting enthusiast in 1967, according to the release. The boat was designed by George Steers, William Brown and by Sparkman & Stephens, and was built at the Goudy & Stevens yard in East Boothbay, Maine.

Bids will be accepted from interested buyers who attend the auction, who call them in and from those who submit absentee written bids. More information and registration forms are available on the auction Web site.

— Jason Fell