6 Oct 2017

New York Yacht Club to challenge for America's Cup

2:03 pm on 6 October 2017

The New York Yacht Club has confirmed its return to the America's Cup after a 14 year hiatus.

29 November 2002, Louis Vuitton Cup, Quarter Final repechage
Dennis Conner  give the media the thumbs up

29 November 2002, Louis Vuitton Cup, Quarter Final repechage Dennis Conner give the media the thumbs up Photo: © Paul Todd / outsideimages.co.nz

The Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron and Team New Zealand have welcomed the announcement that the New York Yacht Club will challenge for the 36th America's Cup.

The NYYC last backed a challenge in 2002-03 with Team Dennis Conner. It held the silver trophy from 1851 until 1983, when Australia II beat Conner's Liberty to end the longest winning streak in sports.

The club will be represented by Bella Mente Quantum Racing Association, which will be led by yachtsmen John J. "Hap" Fauth and Doug DeVos.

DeVos is president of Amway and the brother-in-law of U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

America's Cup veteran Terry Hutchinson will serve as CEO and skipper.... he was tactician for Team New Zealand in Valencia in 2007.

Team New Zealand CEO Grant Dalton has welcomed the move.

"As exciting as it is to have a challenge from the New York Yacht Club, I am equally enthused having Hap Fauth, Doug & Terry in the America's Cup. They are all highly respected and successful individuals and have no shortage of achievements in the top level of competitive monohull sailing in the Maxi72 class and the TP52 classes with series wins and World Championships to their names."

"There is no question that they will be a formidable Challenger."

Offical entires for the 36th America's Cup do not open until 1st January 2018 but with initial intentions from BAR and Team France as well as additional interest from both past and prospective teams to also challenge it is an exciting time for Team New Zealand and the Defending Yacht Club The Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron.

"We are delighted to have received confirmation from Commodore Phil Lotz at the New York Yacht Club that they will be challenging for the Cup in 2021." said Steve Mair, Commodore of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron.

"It will be fantastic to have the New York Yacht Club and their challenging team Bella Mente Quantum Racing here in Auckland. Having had confirmation now from both of the original yacht clubs that challenged for, and defended the first race in 1851, shows that AC36 will again be something very special indeed."