The Louis Vuitton Cup determines who will go on to challenge the reigning Americas Cup champion (currently Alinghi, the Swiss team). This week, the LV semi-finals in Valencia finished up. I'm happy to report that things are going my way.
First, I'm most happy that BMW Oracle Racing(USA) lost to Luna Rossa (Italy). Of course, normally, I'd be cheering on the US team, but my feelings toward Larry Ellison, the owner of the BMW Oracle syndicate, transcend even my strong patriotism. That BMW Oracle was the Challenger of Record (the runner up from last time), this is was Larry's third try at winning (he hasn't yet), and that Luna Rossa smoked their ass 5-1 makes me even happier. After this humiliation, Chris Dickson, the CEO and skipper for BMW Oracle and turncoat from Team New Zealand, resigned. Besides, Luna Rossa, with the help of their sponsor Prada, just looks better. They have a beautiful boat and great uniforms. Look good, sail good.
Almost as sweet, Emirates Team New Zealand beat a scrappy Spanish team, Desafio Espanol, five races to two. I've been a fan of Team New Zealand for a while; they're a class act and a great example of a smaller effort producing great results. I am, of course, even more a fan of Team New Zealand after having visited their base in Auckland, had lunch at the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron (home club for TMZ), and sailed around Auckland Harbor on an old AC boat last year. That said, Desafio Espanol did much better than anyone expected in their first AC challenge. Props to Desafio for a good effort.
So, Team New Zealand and Luna Rossa will race in the finals starting June 1. The winner will go on to challenge Alinghi for the Americas Cup. Should be fun!
If you want to watch video highlights or watch a very slick computer representation of the race (the same one they use in the TV coverage and frankly a better way to follow the races), check out Americas Cup Anywhere.
Here's an old Larry Ellison joke just to finish things up:
Question: What is the difference between God and Larry Ellison?
Answer: God doesn't think he's Larry Ellison.