The second Preliminary Regatta of the 37th America’s Cup in Jeddah presented New York Yacht Club American Magic with a formidable challenge. Despite a stronger finish on the final day’s racing, the team finished in fourth place overall.
A difficult opening day set the tone, leaving American Magic with too much ground to cover in the final two days. The last three races brought promise and glimpses of the consistency required, with two second places and a third. However, the team fell short of securing enough points for the match race final.
Reflecting on the regatta, Paul Goodison, American Magic helm, shared, “It is incredibly frustrating, but it’s the defeats that make you stronger. This is the first real test for the new sailing team, and we've learned a lot about each other. It puts us in good stead to move forward.”
Terry Hutchinson, American Magic's President of Sailing Operations, emphasized the importance of learning from both successes and setbacks. He mentioned,
“Winning hides a lot of things, and losing unfolds some of that. We will take a good, hard look at ourselves and understand what that means. It's going to be a deeper dive with the entire sailing team to hear the helmsmen's and the trimmer's perspectives on why we raced well and why we didn't race well. We need to understand what we can do to make our team better. In the same breath, we need to recognize that it's sport; we have to back ourselves, we have to back the guys that are steering the boat, we have to back the guys that are trimming. And we have to back the entire team. It is a team effort. It's been good to see how the entire team has responded, and the guys on shore have stayed focused on making sure that the boats were perfectly prepared.”
Acknowledging the warm welcome in Saudi Arabia, Hutchinson expressed gratitude for the support from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia;
“The Saudi Ministry of Sports, the Saudi Sailing Federation, and the Jeddah Yacht Club have all warmly welcomed NYYC American Magic, and we sincerely appreciate their support. We hope that our team’s participation can contribute to the development, promotion of sailing in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It's impressive to witness the progress of the Jeddah Yacht Club, the inspiring youth program they have in place, and their dedication to promoting the sport of sailing. Their approach aligns with our mission at American Magic. It's exciting to envision the potential impact of this youth program in this spectacular sailing venue.”
Back on the racetrack, Team New Zealand and Luna Rossa qualified as the two boats for the Match Race Final, with New Zealand taking the victory in the match race final.
The final preliminary regatta of the 37th America’s Cup will be held in Barcelona immediately after the Official Opening Ceremony on August 22, 2024. After that, the Final Preliminary Event and the Challenger Selection Series will follow, leading up to the America's Cup Match starting on October 12, 2024. The Challenger Selections Series will determine which team will face the Defender Emirates Team New Zealand in the America's Cup Match.
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