The Australia SailGP Team boat was launched on Sydney Harbour for the first time today, as the three-week countdown to the inaugural Sydney SailGP begins.
The F50 - the fastest and most technologically advanced race boat in the world - hit the water as part of an exclusive first look for Australia’s most popular breakfast TV show Sunrise. Presenter Sam Mac was joined by the Australian team - including skipper Tom Slingsby, wing trimmer Kyle Langford, and grinders Ky Hurst and Sam Newton - at the team bases on Cockatoo Island.
The six F50s, which have taken more than 135,000 man hours - equal to 67 years - to produce, were transported from Whangarei, New Zealand, to Cockatoo Island in Sydney Harbour earlier this month. In addition to the Aussies, teams from China, France, Great Britain, Japan and the United States are undergoing final preparations and training in the lead up to the race.
“It’s an amazing feeling getting the Australian boat on Australian waters,” said Slingsby. “There’s a huge amount of national pride that comes with seeing the Aussie flag on the boat and repping Australia at an Australian event.
“There’s a lot of work that goes into getting these boats on the water. Our shore team, which is essentially our pit crew, have worked countless hours to get the boat ready for us to do our thing on the water. They’re the best shore team in the world and we’re happy to have them alongside us here.
“The boat looks really good - I might be a little biased, but I think it’s the best looking one in the fleet. It was great to be able to give the Australian public a behind-the-scenes look at our race preparations today and hopefully they’ll be really excited to come down and get behind the team on February 15-16!”
Inside the launch of Australia SailGP Team's F50 at Cockatoo Island.