Onshore battle as America’s Cup grinding contest tests individuals on their strength

Will Allaway from Land Rover BAR on the grinder  Picture: Ian Hargreaves (160985-26)
Will Allaway from Land Rover BAR on the grinder Picture: Ian Hargreaves (160985-26)

Leaders are ‘feeling positive’

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IT WAS the ultimate test of strength and endurance as the public battled it out against the America’s Cup sailors in a grinding competition.

Fans got the chance to test out the training apparatus, including trying to beat the sailing team’s times on their grinding machine.

Competitors tried to complete 20 revolutions in the fastest time.

The grinder is a vital piece of equipment used on high-performance sailing boats, which helps control the sails. The ‘grinders’ are sailors who operate the grinder and are responsible for the quick bringing up and down of the sails.

Meanwhile, spectators also reflected on yesterday’s practice races.

Alex Williams came over from the Isle of Wight with his family for the day.

He said: The races so far have been really good. Land Rover BAR were amazing and if these practices are anything to go by, then our chances in the contest are looking good.’

Siobhan Dolan and Jack Walling were there from Top Bananas, providing circus classes and workshops to visitors. Jack was in high spirits, balancing delicately on a pair of stilts.

He said: ‘Today’s been great and we’re proud to be a part of the event.’

Lady Mayoress Leza Tremorin said she was thrilled the race was back in Portsmouth.

‘I’m very, very excited,’ she told The News.

‘It’s a wonderful thing for Portsmouth and it’s fantastic that the common is open this year.

‘I’ve been going around Portsmouth and everybody is talking about it.

‘There’s a lot of excitement in the city for the America’s Cup.

‘Everywhere we have gone it’s all people have been talking about. The whole weekend is just going to be brilliant.’