As part of this year’s winter lecture series, Mercury Bay Boating Club recently hosted an evening dedicated to the America's Cup and its connection to Mercury Bay.
With its 175 year history the Americas Cup is the world's oldest sporting competition and has included involvement from the Mercury Bay Boating club and local residents from the Coromandel region.
Americas Cup Competitions & Mercury Bay Boating Club
Mercury Bay Boating Club was involved in Americas Cup competitions in 1987 and again in 1992. The club had representation from local Whitianga yachtsmen Sir Michael Fay and club commodores Bob Scott, Toby Morcom and Al Gould. In more recent campaigns local residents Jeremy Lomas and Clint Jones have both been closely involved with the Americas Cup – in very different roles. The Americas cup trophy is currently held by New Zealand.
With the next Americas Cup competition about to begin in Auckland at the end of the year the Mercury Bay Boating club thought it was fitting that we invited Jeremy Lomas and Clint Jones to present as part of our winter lecture series. New Zealanders such as Jeremy and Clint have made a huge impact on the global marine stage and its exciting to share their stories with our community as part of our winter lecture series.
Jonathan Kline – Mercury Bay Boating Club Commodore
Jeremy Lomas – Ferry Owner & America’s Cup Team
Many of our community know Jeremy Lomas as our local ferry operator who lives in Hahei with his wife, Louise, and his children, Chelsea and Jake. Prior to settling in the Mercury Bay Jeremy sailed in the Volvo Round the World Race as well as multiple America's Cup campaigns.
Jeremy joined Team New Zealand before the 2000 America's Cup defence, and was part of their 2003, 2007 and 2013 campaigns. In 2017, he sailed with Dean Barker and SoftBank Team Japan for the 36th America's Cup in Bermuda. Jeremy started sailing in a P Class as a youngster at the Thames Sailing Club and progressed his way through the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron Youth Training Scheme on his way to a career as a professional sailor.
Clint Jones – Oceanmax & Americas Cup Camera Boat
Clint Jones resides in Tairua and is Managing Director of company Oceanmax which developed and distributes “Prop-Speed”. Prop-speed is an internationally known anti-foul coating product used for submerged metal parts, like propellers, underwater struts and similar boat fittings.
While Oceanmax is Clint’s main business, he is also in what he described as his “unreal” job on the water for the Americas cup. Clint is responsible for the management and operation of the super-fast carbon-fibre multi-hull camera boats, custom built as a platform for a half million dollar gyro-stabilised camera. The boats do 40-knots on the course, and they are the only craft authorised to go absolutely anywhere during an actual race. Ground breaking technology is used to design and build this new breed of media boats, capable of keeping up with the new generation of foiling yachts.
During the presentation Clint also shared high energy footage – much of it filmed from Clint's boat – of the AC72s and the AC50s flying around the race courses in San Francisco and Bermuda, the two most recent venues of the Cup Match.
Summing up the presentations
The message from this winter lecture series presentation was clear – Kiwis are different – isolation has fostered ingenuity.
Mercury Bay Boating Club's Challenger KZ-1, the BIG Boat.
Mercury Bay Boating Club
The Mercury Bay Boating Club hosts presentations, social, racing and training events for adults and junior sailors throughout the year. Contact the club for more information about its upcoming events and how to get involved in its adult and junior sailing divisions.
About our Author
Jonathan Kline, Commodore Mercury Bay Boating Club (2020)