December: it’s that time of year when one is drawn to reflect on the last 12 months, and pick out personal highlights.
For me, from the hands-on side of things, it was hitting 19 knots on a J/70 as we flew across Freshwater Bay in this year’s Round the Island Race – absolutely a contender for the top spot in my best-ever sailing experiences.
If you ask me from a spectator’s perspective, however, the pick of 2013 has only one contender: the 34th America’s Cup. This spectacle, through all its highs and lows, brought sailing into the spotlight as a spectator sport in an unparalleled and breath-taking, larger-than-life way. The drama unfolded in ways that no-one could have predicted, played out on awesome machines that pushed the limits of not only the sport but indeed our imaginations.
The world now waits for details of the 35th America’s Cup to be announced – with rumours of a venue being announced by the end of this year, and the details of the next protocol quite possibly being revealed early in the new year.