SailGP has come of age

Bill Springer, Forbes.com, talks to Russell Coutts about how the adrenaline-fueled, environmentally conscious SailGP Racing League is coming of age at the next event of this season in Chicago.

When it comes to high-performance sailing, and high-profile high-performance sailing events, Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison and America’s Cup legend Russell Coutts have pretty much seen it all. Their Oracle Team USA syndicate came back from the brink of losing the America’s Cup to Emirates Team New Zealand (they were down 8 races-to-1) by winning 9 races in a row in historic fashion on San Francisco Bay in 2013.

And their 2017 Oracle Team USA squad was nearly swept when they lost the Cup to Emirates Team New Zealand (7-races-to-1) in Bermuda. But stories like these only scratch the surface of what these two passionate and powerful sailors have brought to the “sport of sailing” since Ellison started forming syndicates headed by Coutts to compete for the America’s Cup in the early 2000’s.

In fact, few have worked harder and invested more to turn the “sport of sailing”, that had been perceived to be a stereotypically slow and boring activity for eccentric billionaires, into a modern sport that has all the excitement, technology, sex appeal and drama (and sponsorship opportunities) of Formula 1 Grand Prix racing, than Ellison and Coutts…

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