SAN DIEGO (AP) — With its fast catamarans, the newfangled America’s Cup is a perfect fit for young adrenaline junkie Nathan Outteridge.
Just 26 and headed for his second Olympics in the 49er class, the Australian will make his debut as Team Korea’s skipper when the first season of the America’s Cup World Series resumes Wednesday in Naples, Italy.
Outteridge didn’t think an America’s Cup opportunity would come so quickly. Naturally, he couldn’t say no. He hadn’t even sailed in an AC45 catamaran when he signed on with Team Korea’s White Tiger Challenge. Having succeeded in several classes of smaller high-performance boats, Outteridge got his hands on the tiller of the 45-foot, wing-sailed craft for the first time last week during training for the regatta.
Outteridge’s chances for a gold medal in the 2008 Olympics ended with a capsize a few hundred meters from the finish line, dropping him to fifth place.