Youth America’s Cup regatta to be reinvigorated

Youth America’s Cup regatta to be reinvigorated

The Youth America’s Cup is a joint initiative between the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron (RNZYS), the China Sports Industry Group (CSIG), and Emirates Team New Zealand (ETNZ).  The multi-leg event will begin with a fleet racing seeding event in China in November 2020.

In line with the original America’s Cup Deed of Gift it is designed to be a ‘friendly competition between yacht clubs of all nations’.  Unlike previous editions, multiple entries from various countries will be allowed.

“We are very excited to introduce the Youth America’s Cup into China,” says Wang Weidong, Chairman of China Sports Industry Group. “The America’s Cup has been the holy grail of the sport of sailing for over 160 years, and is a stage that all athletes dream of. China is set to participate in the America’s Cup, but has to recognise the patient process of achievement.

“From an overall perspective, it is vital we pay more attention to fostering the next generation of top-level racers, developing them from the more basic level. China has a plethora of athletes with the potential along with the required diligence and learning skills, but lacking experience at global professional competitions. We hope that Youth America’s Cup will be the first step for these young Chinese talents to take as they strive to catch up with their leading peers in the world.

“Cross-sector collaborations are vital to develop the advanced design and manufacturing technology that are behind the monohull foiling yacht used in the Youth America’s Cup. In the meantime, the manoeuvres and performance of athletes require enormous data support. Its value chain includes not only the management of the race, team or club, but also naval architects and marine engineers, and other behind-the-scenes offices of law, media, meteorology, internet so the vibrant growth of an industry should be all-encompassing, as one department would thrive with another. We hope the Youth America’s Cup becomes a unique opportunity to encourage more Chinese to try and practice in this sport and inspire them to initiate the evolution of the Chinese sailing industry.”

The event continues with a match racing event in Auckland from February 18th- 23rd 2021 with the finals held between March 8th- 12th 2021 right outside the RNZYS in the shadow of Auckland’s iconic Harbour Bridge.

“The Youth America’s Cup is something we have been eager to see established since we won the America’s Cup and also introduced foiling monohulls to the America’s Cup with the AC75. The Squadron has presented a concept that we believe will add something special to the 36th America’s Cup,” says Grant Dalton, Emirates Team New Zealand CEO.

The AC9F is a nine-metre foiling monohull which has been designed by New Zealand boat building company Yachting Developments (YDL) with input from the Emirates Team New Zealand design team, Southern Spars, North Sails and significant support from the wider New Zealand Marine Industry.  The fleet of one-design boats will be built primarily at YDL in Auckland.

RNZYS Commodore and Yachting Developments owner Ian Cook says the yachts are designed to be extremely exciting to watch and will provide a great challenge for the skilled youth sailors on board – “We are incredibly happy with the design of the AC9F. We believe they will generate great competition and an even playing field for all the teams involved, whilst also leading from the front in terms of modern yacht design, and importantly, creating a great product for fans around the world to observe.”

An initial entry period for yacht clubs and youth crews is open from December 12th through to 29th February 2020.  The entry protocol is intentionally very similar to the America’s Cup Challenger series. Match and entry memorandum. A notice of race. The age restriction for the crews is they must be between 18-24 years of age. The teams will consist of a mixed crew of four sailors on each boat, including two females and two male sailors with a maximum crew weight of 311kgs.

Send expressions of interest to challenger@youthamericascup.com.

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