Sailing fans ready for America's Cup racing in Newport

It has been a long stretch since the last time an America’s Cup race has competed in the waters off Newport.

And the boats coming at the end of June are nothing like the boats that last raced almost 30 years ago.

In 1983, Australia 2 and its crew ended a 132-year winning streak of successful America’s Cup defenses by the New York Yacht Club.

Sailing veteran and NBC commentator Gary Jobson sailed on a pair of America’s Cup contenders in Newport, winning once and losing once.

“I look back now many years later and say how lucky was I to be part of all that and to do it in Newport, Rhode Island, which is for sure, the greatest sailing place in the country, if not the world, in the summer time,” Jobson said.

The America’s Cup has changed locations and designs numerous times since 1983.

But the races return when Newport hosts the final stop in the America’s Cup World Series where teams from all over the world sail their catamarans in the waters off Newport’s Fort Adams.

“I think that Herreshoff and Vanderbilt and other America’s Cup sailors from the past would embrace these catamarans because it’s all about speed. Thanks to space age materials like carbon fiber and these wing masts, these boats can sail two-and-a-half to three times the speed of the wind,” Jobson said.

For sailing fans, these races provide an opportunity to see all the action from the share.

“But the fan is engaged with it and at Fort Adams the competitors will be able to hear the crowds cheering from the shore. This is something you wouldn’t want to miss,” Jobson said.

It will definitely be an event that can be enjoyed by the masses.

An estimated 150,000 spectators watched the races over a four-day period in May in Venice.

Racing begins in Newport on June 28.


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