LOOKING FOR GREATNESS: Australian yachtsman James Spithill is skippering the Team USA boat in the America's Cup
LOOKING FOR GREATNESS: Australian yachtsman James Spithill is skippering the Team USA boat in the America's Cup ANDREW GOMBERT

Spithill's key role for Americans in cup

SYDNEY'S James Spithill is trying to build on his reputation as one of the greatest America's Cup sailors.

But he won't be in an Australian boat when the cup races start in Bermuda on Saturday.

Spithill will skipper two-time defending champions Oracle Team USA again, with trimmer-tactician Tom Slingsby, who won a Laser class gold medal for Australia at the London Olympics in 2012.

Nathan Outteridge, also a London gold medallist, is skipper-helmsman of Sweden's Artemis Racing.

Spithill is fast becoming an America's Cup great. In 2010, at age 30, he was the youngest skipper to win a Cup by steering Team USA to victory.

Three years later he was at the helm when the USA came back from 8-1 down to beat Team New Zealand in the best-of-17 series.

"The hunger has only become stronger and somewhat of an obsession as well," Spithill said. "We're even more obsessed with this."

In the next two-and-a-half weeks crews representing Britain, France, Japan, New Zealand and Sweden will race to win the right to challenge Team USA for the title in the America's Cup match starting June 17.

News Corp Australia

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