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Changes: Fun

from the South who was attracting followers by the hundreds because of his penchant ~ his need ~ to broadcast what was on his mind. Suddenly, because of Turner, the man in the street had access to an event that had always been private and exclusive. Every time Turner fired one of his unfailingly accurate and always public volleys at the officers of the New York Yacht Club, who were the very custodians of private and exclusive, his public persona expanded. With an almost raspy, sharp tone applied to his f lat Southern accent, a delivery that often had a deftly-turned near whine of “poor me” at the end, Turner craftily ex-

one race. Can you imagine the outrage in World Cup circles if Spain were to announce they had put an Italian player on its team? Make no mistake, the 1977 Cup was contentious. Every America’s Cup has been contentious. It was just different in 1977. No one on the crew was working out in the gym full time (or maybe at all), or getting paid more than travel expenses and room and board (if that), or wearing a crash helmet on the boat, or going to bed at 10 p.m. every night, or not having a drink after sailing. Different syndicates took over various Newport taverns they liked. The sailors talked about what was on their minds after a beer or two, talked with members of the press if they knew you, knowing if they said to keep something in the vault, you would. As expected, Turner kept us all smiling. He loved fighting with his back against the wall, and that summer he had his wish. As the summer commenced, he was the outsider, the big loser from 1973. The 1977 Cup defense was promoted as a made-for-Hollywood struggle between the two prominent sailmakers of the time, Lowell North and Ted Hood. Turner had to constantly fight for his due as the nattily-attired New York Yacht Club committee looked askance at the brash behavior of this outspoken young man

Ted Turner, center, taking a bow, and the crew of Courageous after winning the 1977 America’s Cup. 72

March 2017 ttimes web magazine  

Tidewater Times March 2017

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