Sir Ben Ainslie’s team sailed to victory today, taking pole position on the leader board for the Americas Cup in Portsmouth, as The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge looked on.
William and Catherine were visiting also the Duchess’ patronage, the 1851 Trust, which encourages youngsters into sailing and the maritime industry, dressed in Land Rover BAR polo shirts.
The Americas Cup was founded in 1851 by the Royal Yacht Squadron, as a single race around the Isle of Wight open to yachts from across the globe. The prize was a silver cup, valued at £100.
At the beginning of the visit, the couple were shown the boat shed in the headquarters. Whilst inside, Prince William was asked about his son, George, who turned three on Friday. Asked what the toddler had received the Duke replied: “I am not telling, he got too many things, he’s far too spoilt, he’s not into boats yet.”
They then headed out onto the water. Sat at the front of the twin-engine boat which chased after the racing catamarans, the Duke and Duchess cheered on the teams, who were racing at speeds over 40 knots. The boat also bore the Royal Standard.
The Royal couple joined thousands of spectators who were there to support Ainslie’s British team to help bring the cup home – Britain is yet to win the cup.
Tim Carter, 24, of Land Rover BAR spoke to both William and Kate and was grateful for their support today. “To have their support is just massive,” he told The News. “It’s helping us to get the whole country behind us. That’s exactly what we need to bring the cup home.”
Ainslie’s team began in fifth place yesterday, but won races two and three on Saturday, putting Land Rover BAR in joint first place with Groupama Team France.
It was then time for a trophy presentation, which the special guests assisted with.