Yachting: Fast Dame on the Make

For sheer futility, frustration and fiscal irresponsibility, nothing in sport can match the attempts of non-American sailors to capture the America's Cup—the $500 trophy that has remained in U.S. hands for 115 years. The British have tried 16 times, the Canadians twice, the Australians once—all have failed. Hope still springs, as long as somebody springs for the price (upwards of $300,000) of a sleek 12-meter yacht. Next September Australia will go again. After trial races in Sydney last week, Top Skipper Jock Sturrock, 51, was eager to boast that "we've got a boat that can win the America's Cup."

The...

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