Inevitably, thoughts now turn to the next America’s Cup (2024), and a few questions loom large.

Will foiling monohulls prevail? It’s no secret that many of those participating in the Auckland event began grumbling about the complexity and expense of the AC75s. They are very tricky boats to ‘fly’ – especially in light airs. There were even suggestions from the Italians that, if they were to win, they’d favour a return to conventional displacement yachts.

It’s difficult to predict which way ETNZ and the new Challenger of Record (widely-rumoured to be Team UK) will go, but with the foiling genie now well and truly out of the lantern, it seems unlikely that foiling will be cut from the 37th America’s Cup.

Where will it be held? Auckland? Logically, yes – and I think most Kiwis (even the non-sailors) would want it to remain here. But it’s worth considering alternatives, for a range of reasons.

For a start, staging an event like the America’s Cup doesn’t come cheap, and every time our Government extends a helping hand to ETNZ, there are howls of outrage about ‘elitist-rich-pricks’ and suggestions about where the money could be better spent.

Auckland is far from everywhere. Getting syndicates to commit to a regatta held on the other side of the world doesn’t help to make the event more ‘inclusive’. Staging it in Europe, Asia or the Middle East would be easier.


Attracting sponsors would be easier if the regatta was held in Europe, for example, where fans wouldn’t have to get up at 4am to watch the racing (not much fun during a freezing European winter). Sardinia would be my pick.

For all its glamour and gloss, the America’s Cup needs more competitors if it is to survive. The Covid-pandemic didn’t help our cause, but the major hurdle to entry is cost. Staging it in Europe might attract more teams.

All for the good of the sport.