From Bernie Wilson at the Associated Press:
Still bundled against the cold in his white foul-weather gear, software tycoon Larry Ellison hoisted the America’s Cup high in the air, then planted a kiss on the oldest trophy in international sports.
“Valencia—muchas gracias!” the self-made billionaire screamed, following the ride of his life across the Mediterranean on one of the most remarkable boats ever built.
After sitting out Race 1 due to a weight limit, the 65-year-old Ellison was onboard his trimaran Sunday as space-age craft with a gigantic wing for a sail sped ahead of two-time defending champion Alinghi of Switzerland to complete the two-race sweep.bring the America’s Cup, once again, after a long absence, back to the United States of America,” said Ellison, the CEO of Oracle Corp.
Syndicate CEO Russell Coutts, who has quite a bit of experience at winning the America’s Cup, popped the cork on a magnum of champagne and sprayed his boss, as well as tactician John Kostecki and skipper-helmsman Jimmy Spithill of Australia.
Blue and silver confetti blew across the stage and fireworks went off across Port America’s Cup, a festive ending to a tumultuous 2 1/2 -year period that dragged the 159-year-old event to one of its lowest points.
Ellison and rival Ernesto Bertarelli had been locked in court since July 2007, and it looked for a while like the result of this race was going to be contested off the water.
Alinghi raised a red protest flag on its giant catamaran late on the first leg of the triangle course during Race 2, leaving everyone wondering what it was about since there’s no communication off the boats.
The Swiss dropped the protest after the race, confirming Ellison’s win.