Four time Olympic Champion Ben Ainslie has decided to retire from the Olympic sailing and devote his attention to the 35th America’s Cup.
At the London Olympic Games 2012 the Brit Ben Ainslie wrote his name in the history of the sailing sport by winning his fourth consecutive gold medal, which was the culmination of his Olympic career lasting for sixteen years. The fourth gold medal also made Ainslie the most successful Olympic sailor of all time.
According to Ainslie, the decision didn’t come easily: “When I look back there are so many special memories; from that first medal in Atlanta 16 years ago to carrying the flag at the closing ceremony in London 2012. London was an incredibly special Olympics, competing on home waters and in front of a home crowd, I don¹t think anything will be able to top that experience. But you have to move forwards and it is time to move onto the next challenge in my career.”
Ben Ainslie has created a team to fight for the 35th America’s Cup. This will be the start of a new chapter in his sailing career as he now focuses on winning the America’s Cup and bringing the oldest trophy in sport back to Britain. The fact that, conceived by the British in 1851, the America’s Cup is the only international sporting trophy Great Britain has never won, is a pure challenge, and Ben Ainslie has accepted it.
The first steps on this road has been taken: the Ben Ainslie Racing (BAR) AC45 team is competing in the America’s Cup World Series (ACWS) 2012-13 with J.P.Morgan as the team’s title sponsor. The team has already done a promising start by finishing second at the last ACWS event in October.
“The America’s Cup has always been a goal for me. With the new format of the America’s Cup World Series and the increased commercialisation of the event, I feel confident that we can continue to build towards creating a commercially viable team, with the ultimate goal of challenging for the 35th America’s Cup,” reports Ainslie to the media.
During the next ten months Ainslie will train and compete with the America’s Cup defenders ORACLE Team USA in San Francisco, that will undoubtedly let him obtain invaluable experience helming one of two AC72s in the build up to the 34th America’s Cup in September 2013.