Australia II wins the America’s Cup 1983
Australia II (KA 6) is an Australian 12-metre-class America’s Cup challenge racing yacht that was launched in 198 and won the 1983 America’s Cup for the Royal Perth Yacht Club.
Skippered by John Bertrand, she was the first successful Cup challenger, ending the 132-year tenure (with 26 successful defences) by the New York Yacht Club.
Australia II, skippered by John Bertrand, faced Dennis Conner sailing the 12-metre Liberty in the ocean off Newport, Rhode Island. Australia II came from behind to winning 4 races to 3.
Australia II, bearing sail number KA6, represented the Royal Perth Yacht Club of Australia in its September 1983 challenge for the America’s Cup. The defender, the New York Yacht Club, had held the cup since 1851, dominating challengers and sustaining the longest winning streak in sport.
The victory on 26 September 1983 was a landmark event for the nation of Australia, not to mention the Royal Perth Yacht Club. The achievement was underscored when Australia II was awarded the ABC Wide World of Sports Athlete of the Year for 1983.
The win was received with much enthusiasm in Australia, with the Men at Work song “Down Under” becoming the official anthem for the crew.
Extra Note: The Boxing Kangaroo was the official mascot of the Australia II effort.
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