For the first time in the history of the "America's Cup", two nations (Australia and France) are competing for the chance to become the first country to win the cup from the American holders.
For the first time in the history of the "America's Cup", two nations (Australia and France) are competing for the chance to become the first country to win the cup from the American holders. The French challenger "France" arrived at Newport, Rhode Island, on Monday (22 June).
While three American boats are competing for the honour of defending the cup, Australia and France will race an elimination series in August to decide who will make the final challenge in September.
The Australian challenger "Gretal II" is not due to arrive until next month, but the French challenger, "France" has just arrived, It is France's first ever challenge and Australia's third.
"France" has been designed by Adnre Mauric, and before starting to design it he went to America and studied their ideas, methods and yachts. No one has ever designed a yacht of the 12-metre class in France before, nor has one ever been built there, Mr. Mauric had to have it built in Pontarlier, a few miles from the Swiss frontier and about 2,900 feet (890 metres) above sea-level.
The American's Cup is raced every three years and the New York Yacht Club has resisted every attempt to win the trophy since it was first presented to the schooner "America" after beating a British racing fleet around the Isle Wight in 1851.
When the French challenger arrive in Newport, the Mayor was at the quayside to greet and welcome the members of the crew.