Hundreds flocked to the Bucklands Beach Yacht Club over the weekend to catch a glimpse of the iconic America’s Cup.
On Saturday afternoon, the vessel carrying the America’s Cup arrived in the Bucklands Beach Yacht Club marina, greeted by cheers and waves from supporters watching from the balcony above.
Travelling with the cup were Emirates Team New Zealand team members Richard Meacham, Simon Van Velthooven, Russell Green and past Team New Zealand member Joey Allen, along with Olympian gold and silver medallist Rex Sellers.
The visit was part of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron’s national tour which has been taking the America’s Cup around the regions to give New Zealanders a chance to see the trophy.
Visitors to the Bucklands Beach Yacht Club were eager to get a picture with the cup, the oldest trophy in international sport.
No questions went unanswered as team members formed a panel to talk about the America’s Cup past and present.
The team talked about what happened during New Zealand’s remarkable victory over Oracle Team USA in Bermuda earlier this year as well as what the plans are for the America’s Cup scheduled to be held in Auckland in 2021.
“We had a really good turn out and the response from everyone was incredible. I think everyone really enjoyed being there and getting a feel for what it’s all about,” says Club Manager Lyle Tresadern.
“We have to thank Emirates Team New Zealand for bringing the cup to us. It’s been a long trip for them, travelling around all the clubs and sharing the trophy with the public.
“But it’s good to see New Zealanders who have given them so much support being able to experience the victory with them.”
The crowd was addressed by Joey Allen who started sailing at Bucklands Beach as a child before he went on to become one of Team New Zealand’s most experienced members.
Sailing champions and Olympic yachtsmen as well as those just wanting to get a look at the America’s Cup trophy gathered together to celebrate the event over food, wine and beer.
The America’s Cup trophy wasn’t the only entertainment on offer with John Carr, stand-up comedian, writer, cartoonist and performance poet, there performing for the crowd.
The yacht club, which prides itself on producing many talented sailors that include Olympic champions, America’s Cup winners and yachties who have brought home some of the sailing world’s most coveted prizes. Earlier a yacht race was held with some of our club sailors demonstrating their skills.
Food stalls, music and wine and cheese tasting topped off the memorable evening.
Bring on the next America’s Cup!