30 Nov 2010
Kiwi yachtsmen have again showed they are top of their game with Emirates Team New Zealand winning the 2010 Louis Vuitton Trophy in Dubai, and dominating the world class event over recent years.

New Zealand’s triumph over USA’s BMW Oracle Racing means that in the past two years NZ has won four out of five Louis Vuitton Trophy events, and finished second in the other.

In what world commentators called ”an incredible performance”, Dean Barker and his Kiwi team came from behind to win their last four races including two against BMW Oracle Racing which had been the outstanding team during the two-week regatta.

Kiwi celebrations
The Kiwis were serenaded by boat horns and sirens as they crossed the line 90 seconds before the American boat.

Grant Dalton, the managing director of Emirates Team New Zealand who also races on the boat, said it had been a tough regatta but the Kiwis had saved their best until last.

”Oracle have been the form boat for the whole regatta. We came out today with determination knowing that on our day we are good enough but we would really need to produce.”

Despite shifty wind conditions the team had changed its intended course and not let go. ”It’s a hallmark of this side,” he said.

Asked about the secret to his team’s success, Dalton said: ”It’s a team that lives on the smell of an oily rag. Everyone buys into the culture and the way we operate. We’re not frivolous at all. You can’t spend a hundred dollars without a requisition order for me. And in a funny sort of way that helps to build our culture.

”We’re proud that we represent New Zealand and we’re good mates. We’ve built that over the years. It takes a long time to get those combinations. It’s jelling for us now. In the new era if we can hold onto that culture, and we will and we can, we can take it into our new projects,” said Dalton.

End of an era
The match racing off the Dubai International Marine Club signalled the end of 20 years of competition for the mono-hull America’s Cup class boats.

The boats have been raced in five America’s Cup events, as well as the Louis Vuitton Cup and Louis Vuitton Trophy regattas.

At the Dubai regatta final, Louis Vuitton Malletier announced it will continue to sponsor the America’s Cup and challenger series.

The Paris-based luxury house has been involved with the America’s Cup for 27 years and will present the prize, the Louis Vuitton Cup, to the winner of the America’s Cup Challenger Series in 2013.

It will also serve as official timing for the series and the 34th America’s Cup.

Since 1983, the Louis Vuitton Cup Challenger Series has been held whenever there has been more than one challenger for the America’s Cup. Its role is twofold – to select the best challenger team from the teams presented and, to prepare the winner for success against the defender in the following America’s Cup finals.

America’s Cup 2013
The Louis Vuitton Cup will be held in the summer of 2013, with the America’s Cup finals in early autumn.

The events will feature the AC72 wing-masted catamaran, a ground-breaking new boat designed to deliver unparalleled racing competition and on-the-water excitement.

The AC72 and the smaller AC45 America’s Cup class boats to be used in 2011 will be built in New Zealand.

BMW Oracle has established a high-tech production facility at Warkworth, north of Auckland and will employ between 50 and 70 people.

Known as Core Composites, the new facility has already produced the first hull of the AC45. Although the new protocol for the 34th America’s Cup states the hulls of the AC72s need to be constructed in the USA, other components including the wingsail and foils will be manufactured in Warkworth.

Emirates Team New Zealand has not yet confirmed any involvement in the 34th America’s Cup. Only three groups have filed challenge papers – the Challenger of Record Mascalzone Latino of Italy, Artemis Racing of Sweden and a group that hasn’t been identified.

BMW Oracle Racing is considering bids from San Francisco and Italy to host the 34th America’s Cup, and will make a choice by the end of the year.

More information

New Zealand’s sea-going love affair

Exploring New Zealand by water