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America’s Cup: Bermuda to enter youth team

Bermuda will enter a team in the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup in 2017 and officials want the Island to rally round the project.

Team Bermuda officials are looking for the Island’s best young athletes to compete to be members of the squad which they are building with the intention of winning the cup.

Organisers hope the sight of the AC45 catamaran zipping around the Great Sound, flying the Bermuda flag, will capture the public’s imagination.

“Wouldn’t it be great to cheer for a home team, something the country could rally around,” Glenn Jones, Team Bermuda spokesman, said. “Now there will. When the most exciting sailing event to ever hit our shores takes place on the Great Sound, there will be a home team to cheer for and a flag to rally around. This is a national opportunity to unify around the universal language of sport.”

Athletes from any sport, who must be aged between 19 and 24 in 2017 and were born in Bermuda or hold a Bermuda passport, are eligible for trials which will take place on August 8 and again in September.

“Whether you are a sailor or not, if you are an athlete who is focused, hard-working, and physically fit there may be a spot for you on this team,” Jones said. “This is a search for Bermuda’s best young athletes that can be transformed into sailors.

“The team will embody the best of the Island and the brightest of its future.” Some have already signed up, including Somerset’s Cup Match bowler Greg Maybury, who called it “a special opportunity”.

A host of Bermuda’s athletes, including Tyler Butterfield and Nahki Wells, are supporting the project.

“If I was younger, as a local Bermudian in my mid-20s I would be grasping this opportunity with both hands,” Butterfield said.

Athletes wanting to take part in the trials should fill out a form on the America’s Cup website by August 4. Sailors interested in taking part have until July 24.