I'll be honest, I haven't been following the Youth America's Cup. In fact, I haven't really been watching the actual America's Cup, so I suppose it's not that surprising that the youth version has mostly passed me by.
But, in one of those chance moments, where the universe aligns, I ended up watching the end of the last race on YouTube.
The New Zealand team were just completing their third win out of the three races that day, and were set to win the trophy. Landrover BAR were down in fifth, needing to finish at least third to win overall, but all was pretty much lost as they were nearly 2 minutes behind third place at the last windward gate. With only the leeward gate and the reach to the finish, they needed something dramatic to happen to turn things around.
And drama was what they got:
It was a pretty tough break on the Kiwis (not to mention the Germans, Swedes and Swiss). And it is perhaps just a little ironic that, in an event with foiling catamarans, the greatest drama occurred with most of the protagonists at a virtual standstill. Maybe it goes to show that you don't need to be hammering along at 40 knots to get dramatic racing. Maybe.
Of course, at this point I should probably say that I immediately thought what all the top sailors would undoubtedly have also been thinking having witnessed something like this: that it is proof that you should never give up until the race is finished, because anything can happen.
This is the kind of thing that champions think when they see this kind of last minute turnaround.
But the reality is that I thought nothing of the sort. In fact I felt a sense of profound injustice. Not for the poor Kiwis, who'd just had the trophy snatched from their grasp. No, the injustice I felt was for myself. And the first thought I'd had? Well it was this of course:
Why do things like this never happen to me?