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Sailors prove good sports in ‘grind-off’

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A gala fundraiser that pitted America's Cup sailors against each other in a “grind-off” has helped raise more than $100,000 for Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute's educational programmes.

Graeme Spence of Oracle Team USA, Luke Parkinson of Artemis Racing and Simeon Tienpont of Softbank Team Japan battled it out on the “grinding machine” — a gruelling piece of sail training apparatus.

The semi-final came down to Artemis Racing and Oracle Team USA, with Oracle the winner, clocking in the longest distance on the grinding machine.

Gala guests had an opportunity to purchase a raffle ticket, with the prize being a tour of the winning grinder's base.

Guests enjoyed an aerial hoop display produced by Rockfire Productions called “Lyrafish: Invasion” and featured aerial performers Sophia Canonnier and Kallie Marcus.

Lionfish cakes were served as a canape.

A silent auction was filled with everything from a 90-pound wheel of Parmesan cheese from Little Venice to autographed Oracle Team USA gear and a live auction prize of a ride on Turbo — the test boat of Artemis Racing. The evening concluded with music from Felix Todd and Tony Brannon of The Big Chill.

Working up a sweat: Graeme Spence of Oracle Team USA shows how it's done as he takes part in the “grind-off” during the BUEI fundraiser (Photograph by Sam Greenfield/Oracle Team USA)
Giving his all: Graeme Spence of Oracle Team USA helped to raise more than $100,000 for educational programmes (Photograph by Sam Greenfield/Oracle Team USA)
Spectator sport: guests at the fundraiser watch the “grind-off” (Photograph by Sam Greenfield/Oracle Team USA)
Tougher than it looks: a guest tries her hand at the sail training equipment (Photograph by Sam Greenfield/Oracle Team USA)
Happy to help: Graeme Spence of Oracle Team USA (Photograph by Sam Greenfield/Oracle Team USA)

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Published May 11, 2016 at 9:00 am (Updated May 11, 2016 at 9:08 am)

Sailors prove good sports in ‘grind-off’

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