WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — The second racing yacht belonging to U.S. America’s Cup challenger American Magic arrived in Auckland early Thursday aboard a giant Antonov cargo aircraft.

American Magic, backed by the New York Yacht Club, landed its first boat, named Defiant, in New Zealand in June and has been conducting sea trials since July.

The boat was built at Bristol, Rhode Island and was flown to New Zealand via Chicago and Honolulu. The arrival of the 75-foot vessel puts American Magic on course to be the first challenger to launch a second generation of the planing mono-hulls in which the Cup will be contested.

The boats rise up out of the water on thin foils which produce minimal drag and allow them to reach high speeds.

British challenger Ineos Team UK is reportedly ready to fly its two boats to New Zealand, while a boat belonging to Italy’s Luna Rossa team is on a cargo ship heading to Auckland.

The U.S., British and Italian teams will compete in a challenger series in January and February for the right to take on defender Team New Zealand in the 36th America’s Cup match in March.

The America’s Cup has been contested since 1856 and is regarded as the oldest trophy in sports.


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