Australian sailing legend Iain Murray AM will this October be inducted into the America’s Cup Hall of Fame, recognising the service of one of the competition’s most respected competitor, designer and official.
Murray will be honoured on October 17th, 2023 at the America’s Cup Hall of Fame Induction gala at the New York Yacht Club in New York City alongside fellow Class of 2023 inductees John “JB” Barnitt and Hope Goddard Iselin.
“It is a huge privilege to be inducted into the America’s Cup Hall of Fame, a competition in which I have invested a large part of my sailing life,” said Murray at the announcement.
“To be recognised and to stand alongside the other inductees is almost unbelievable. Being part of a ceremony like this in the New York Yacht Club NYC and to be acknowledged alongside some of the most famous names in sailing the oldest international sporting trophy is a huge, huge honour.”
Murray was in shock when he originally received the news.
“Blue (Robinson) rang and told me the news. I had to ask him if it was April the first as I thought it was a hoax. It was totally unexpected, and then finding out that my good friend JB (John Barnitt) will be another of the inductees was incredible.
“For us to be inducted together is kind of what the America’s Cup is all about. Spirited competition between yacht clubs and nations, with sportsmanship, respect, and friendship at its core.”
Iain’s journey in the America’s Cup began in 1983 in Newport, Rhode Island, racing aboard Syd Fischer’s Advance, becoming the second youngest skipper in the America’s Cup up to that date.
For the next match, in 1987, Iain joined Kevin Parry’s Perth-based Taskforce ’87 syndicate, to skipper and co-design, with John Swarbrick, three 12 Metre yachts, all named Kookaburra. Kookaburra III emerged as the winner of the defender series and secured a place in the America’s Cup match, where Iain became only the second person in the history of the Cup to race in the match as both the skipper and the designer of a competing yacht.
Further Cup campaigns saw Iain as CEO and lead designer of SPIRIT OF AUSTRALIA in 1992, before his final sailing campaign with John Bertrand’s oneAUSTRALIA in 1995.
Since then, Murray has served as the Regatta Director of the 2013, 2017 and 2021 America’s Cups and will perform the same role in Barcelona next year.
“Iain has contributed so much to the America’s Cup – as a designer, skipper, campaign manager and administrator, it was a privilege to be part of the call from the Hall of Fame Selection Committee, to advise the Big Fella that he was selected as part of the Class of 2023 to be inducted into the America’s Cup Hall of Fame,” said Hall of Fame Selection Committee member Robinson.
“Iain certainly recognises what an honour it is – and he was speechless when we told him. It was quite a moment!”
You can read more about the America’s Cup Hall of Fame and the 2023 Induction Class on their website.