We take a look back at a stunning 36th America's Cup in Auckland New Zealand, through the eyes of the photographers on the ground

On Wednesday 17th March 2021, Emirates New Zealand beat Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli 7-3 to win the 36th America’s Cup, successfully defending their 2017 victory in the event. The win makes this their fourth America’s Cup victory, following previous wins in 1995, 2000, and 2017.

Despite Covid-19 disrupting the build up to the event and keeping the public away from the America’s Cup race village for the opening days of the regatta, it has been in impressive 36th America’s Cup in a country that has long embraced the competition between friendly nations. It has also been one of only a few sporting events that has managed t be held with little disruption in 2020/2021

As Max Sirena, skipper and head of the Challenger of Record, Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli put it after racing: “I would like to thank New Zealand. At this moment in time [with Covid-19] this is the only place we could have held this event in the world.”

Helmsman of Emirates Team New Zealand, Peter Burling added: “When you talk to friends overseas and we talk to our friends in the UK and America and Italy too, we see there is a lot of hardship going on and it is hard seeing the way Covid has changed the way in which we live. To still be able to put on an event like this, really that is full credit everyone who lives here, and to the government for trying to keep our country Covid free.

“Obviously we started the event in Level Two [Covid lockdown] and it has been amazing to get back to Level 1 so we could have a finish like [we saw] today with everyone in the race village. 

The wait will now be on to see what the next America’s Cup will look like once a Challenger of Record (CoR) has been announced and the New Zealanders alongside that new CoR have decided on the boat, the rules and the venue. 

However, the praise heaped on the newly conceived AC75 by all teams and many fans seems likely to seal the design’s position as the America’s Cup boat of choice for the 37th America’s Cup – or at least a slightly modified version. 

It think the [AC75] has produced racing beyond our expectations, so we are really happy with it,” said Dan Bernasconi, who heads up the Emirates Team New Zealand design team. 

“Everyone was a bit scared of this boat a couple of years ago [when it was first announced], but these boats sail extremely well and [are] really nice. I hope they stay in the future,” agreed Sirena. 

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