America’s Cup speakers will address sail conference


The sailing industry and the America’s Cup can work together to increase the presence of sailing throughout the world.

That’s what organizers of Sail America’s 2012 Industry Conference hope to explore with two renowned speakers who will update attendees on the America’s Cup.

Iain Murray, America’s Cup regatta director and CEO of Race Management, and Bob Billingham, San Francisco event infrastructure manager, will open the 2012 Industry Conference with an America’s Cup update and a discussion about how the America’s Cup and the sailing industry can work together to grow the sailing market and help the America’s Cup reach a broader audience.

Conference organizers “were really praying for” Murray and Billingham, said Scot West, U.S. general manager at Ronstan International Inc.

West, who helped organize seminars, said both are engaging speakers.

“They’re going to talk to us about the business of sailing and how America’s Cup can affect that,” West told Soundings Trade Only.

“They’ll be kicking things off, which is nice, because we chose Newport for a reason,” Sail magazine publisher Josh Adams said

The Sail America conference will take place Monday through Wednesday and it coincides with the America’s Cup World Series event.

Murray holds the dual role of regatta director and CEO of America's Cup Race Management, a neutral, independent body that is tasked with all of the sporting and logistical aspects of the America’s Cup World Series and the 34th America’s Cup.

Murray has been a pillar of America’s Cup syndicates from 1983 to 1995. He was the helmsman of Syd Fisher’s 1983 challenger Advance and joined Kevin Parry’s

Kookaburra syndicate for Australia’s defense of the Cup in 1987. Murray also led the Spirit of Australia challenge for the 1992 Challenger Series.

Murray has enjoyed a tremendous career as an offshore sailor, winning many of the world’s classic events. He participated in 17 Sydney-Hobart Races, achieving two overall victories and four line-honors wins. As a one-design sailor, Murray won the

Etchell’s world championship in 1984 and placed third at the 2005 Etchell’s Worlds. At the 2008 Olympic Games, Murray represented Australia in the Star class at the age of 50.

Billingham works for America’s Cup Race Management in San Francisco, preparing facilities that will host the America’s Cup racing in 2012 and 2013.

Billingham has an accomplished sailing track record, including winning a silver medal with John Kostecki in the Soling Class at the 1988 Olympic Games in Korea and being a member of Bill Koch’s winning America3 campaign in the 1992 America’s Cup. He is a five-time world champion in Solings, Etchells, J-24’s, and Maxi’s.

Billingham has served on the management side of the U.S. Olympic team for 20 years and was chief operating officer for Paul Cayard at AmericaOne in the 2000 America’s Cup in Auckland and Artemis Racing for AC34.

The session will take place from 8:30 to 9:15 a.m. Tuesday at the Newport Harbor Hotel & Marina in Newport, R.I. The seminar is open to all conference attendees.

Click here to sign up.


Registration for Outdoors Conference Opens

The Outdoor Recreation Roundtable’s June 1-2 virtual conference will include speakers and presenters from government agencies and ORR member partners.

Yamaha Sees Double-Digit Growth in Q1

The marine segment was up 7.4 percent, driven by demand for outboards in North America and Europe but tempered by supply-chain logistics.

Orion Announces SafetyPro Training

The factory-authorized courses are designed “to educate retail associates on how to match a boater’s type of boating with the different signal kits that we offer.”

A Truce on Tariffs?

The E.U. will suspend the June 1 increase of its retaliatory tariffs and agreed to negotiate with the U.S. to end steel and aluminum tariffs.

Argos 3D Forward Looking Sonar

For 20 Years, FarSounder has been developing and manufacturing 3D forward-looking sonar for vessels of all sizes.

Dometic Marine Appoints Executives

The company promotes a 20-plus-year employee and adds a vice president of aftermarket sales and e-commerce.

IMEA Launches Scholarship Program

The International Marine Electronics Alliance aims to recruit students into the field of marine technology.

RBFF Campaign Reels in Awards

The fishing-and-boating advocacy group’s Get on Board campaign was recognized by two national public relations organizations.

Suzuki’s Clean Ocean Project

Testing of the engine manufacturer’s microplastics filtering device continues as it moves closer to production. The company also released its full-year financials.