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Old 09-27-2013, 08:13 AM   #61
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Every team is multinational, some more than others, and the actual sailing "Team USA" is especially hard to reconcile as you note (and widely debated in sailing forums) along with this...


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Winning the Cup was expensive. It is estimated that Silicon Valley billionaire Larry Ellison spent $170-$200 million on his boat’s campaign while the Kiwi’s spent $84 million says Sailing World. “It was David vs. Goliath,” Gary Chapman, president of group services For Emirates in Dubai, told me.



Kind of takes some of the "USA pride" out of the win when the Kiwis came so close to taking The Cup with half the budget from a nation with 1/70th the population of the USA. Sailing is much more popular in NZ than the USA, IIRC the number of boats per capita is higher in NZ than any other country. I've even thought of moving there in retirement as a result...but they don't take expats without marketable skills for the most part.

Just wanted to make a comment on the cost side.... I remember one race where they were talking about possible damage to the boat.... they said that the US team had a backup boat but NZ did not.... since the big cost is in the boat, I can see where US spent twice as much if they have twice as many boats....
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Old 09-27-2013, 08:38 AM   #62
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Just wanted to make a comment on the cost side.... I remember one race where they were talking about possible damage to the boat.... they said that the US team had a backup boat but NZ did not.... since the big cost is in the boat, I can see where US spent twice as much if they have twice as many boats....
Believe it or not, the boats are not the big cost at all.

The boats cost a staggering $8-10 million each. Both Team New Zealand and Oracle Team USA built two boats (max allowed in the rules). Though I suspect Oracle spent more on boats & equipment, if both teams spent $16-20 million on their boats, and Oracle spent 170-$200 million on their campaign while the Kiwi’s spent $84 million as reported in Sailing World - the large difference in spending is not due to boats.

During the AC finals, both teams were asked if their second boat could be ready if their chosen race boat was severely damaged during the racing. Oracle said they could have their second boat ready within 24 hours, IOW in time for racing the next day. NZ said it would take them much longer, though I don't think they gave an estimate. I suspect that's what you're referring to. Presumably New Zealand cannibalized their second boat considerably and/or maintained their second boat to a much lesser extent than Oracle.

All reports I've seen suggest the big cost far and away for the campaigns was/is "labor" - sailing crew, design team, shore team, management/marketing/other support teams. Isn't that how it is with most professional sports?

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And of course there's some controversy brewing about what modifications Oracle made during the series. The mod, a "stability augmentation system," was disclosed before the final series began and approved by the measurement officials, but it's not over quite yet. Sadly any event at the level of $ will have lots of attorneys involved...the sailing world has been abuzz since the "win."
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Old 09-27-2013, 08:55 AM   #63
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So if Larry Ellison funded the whole thing ($200 million) personally, he lost 0.5% of his reported $41b net worth. During the two weeks of the AC finals, his ~1 billion shares of Oracle increased in value by ~$1/share or 5 times the total cost of the Oracle Team USA campaign.

Now those are hard to fathom numbers.
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