A former America’s Cup contender and multi-millionaire businessman predicts Ineos Team UK will not only beat Luna Rossa in the upcoming Prada Cup final – but the Sir Ben Ainslie syndicate will go a step further and beat Team New Zealand for the Auld Mug.
In an interview with TimeThe 76-year-old businessman and former America’s Cup sailor Peter de Savary said Team England’s incredible return after the World Series disaster in December was proof they could solve Britain’s 170-year drought.
Ainslie and Co failed to win a single race – and remained in the breeze – in December’s four-day regatta before sweeping it all before them in the Prada Cup robin round to book a place in the final against Italy.
The best Prada Cup final of 13 kicks off on Saturday, with the winners advancing to next month’s Copa America tie against defender Team New Zealand.
“If I were a gambler, I wouldn’t put my money in New Zealand; I would put a lot of money on Ben Ainslie,” said De Savary. Time.
“I was obviously concerned about Ben when I saw the performance before Christmas, but I was sure he would make things right and of course he has.
“Apart from being a very nice and pleasant person and a very nice and polite person, he is the most phenomenal sailor – he has a good boat, he has the best technology he can have and he has a very well funded campaign. himself in absolute prominence. “
De Savary, whose 12-meter-class Victory ’83 yacht was the last from England to reach the final of the 38-year-old series before losing 4-1 to Australia, said Ainslie’s adaptability and newfound speed from Britannia had what it took to trump TNZ.
“Ben has proven that he can react very quickly, so there is plenty of room for this boat and this team to develop. I’m sure you will see him in the next series of races. In the Copa America, he will react to New Zealand, boat race after race, and tailor the campaign, “said De Savary.
“It’s very difficult in this sport to find someone with Ben’s qualities, abilities and personality,” he said. “[He] has demonstrated an ability to give confidence to its financial backers [billionaire co-founder of Ineos, Sir Jim Ratcliffe] and I can’t think of an area relevant to the Copa America that he’s not good at. “
Bringing Mug Auld back to England would be the highest achievement in sailing, said De Savary.
“Of course if Ben wins the Copa America there will be tremendous praise … it will be something we can all be proud of and be proud of. It’s a good feeling – we need something that makes us feel good right now, so it will make us feel good. proud to be a powerful drug against this bloody virus. “
Asked what advice he would give Ainslie ahead of his must-win match with Jimmy Spithill’s Luna Rossa, De Savary said confidence was key.
“Ben is a very focused person … but he has to have total confidence in himself and his team. He must not doubt himself, his team, his boat for a minute – nothing is more confident when you are in any competition. and, obviously, this is the last competition for him. “
Towards a Cup race?
• Give yourself plenty of time and think about taking the ferry, train, or bus to watch the Cup.
• Make sure your AT HOP card is in your pocket. It’s the best way to ride.
• Don’t forget to scan the QR code with the NZ COVID Tracer app when taking public transportation and entering America’s Cup Village.
• For more ways to enjoy race day, visit at.govt.nz/americascup.