Back in December 2019, the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron announced a re-invigorated Youth America’s Cup, to be sailed in brand-new AC9F foiling mono-hulls.
To date there has been remarkably little news from the Royal New Zealand YS on build progress or the entries received, although they are expecting up to 20 teams.
There is still time to enter, with the initial entry period for yacht clubs and youth crews closing on 29 February 2020.
Entry fee is NZD$115,000 (£57,000) plus an entry bond and a damage deposit.
The AC9F is a nine-metre foiling monohull which has been designed by New Zealand boat building company Yachting Developments (YDL).
The fleet of seven, one-design boats is to be built primarily at YDL in Auckland with a projected launch date of late February 2020.
The intial launch document invisaged a fleet-racing qualifying event in China in November 2020 – although they may now be in some doubt due to the Coronavirus outbreak in China.
And then a match-racing event in Auckland from 18 to 23 February 2021 with the finals held between March 8 to 12 March 2021 during the PRADA Cup Challenger Selection Series and America’s Cup.
Designed to be a ‘friendly competition between yacht clubs of all nations’ and multiple entries from countries will be allowed.
The age restriction for the crews is that they must be between 18-24 years of age.
To encourage diversity at this high level the teams must consist of a mixed crew of four sailors on each boat, including two females and two male sailors with a maximum crew weight of 311kgs.