Russell Coutts is the winning skipper of the America’s Cup in 1995 and 2000 (for Team New Zealand) and 2003 (for Alinghi). Russell began to sail when he was 6 on a P-Class, New Zealand's kids most popular dinghy. He dreamed of the America's Cup at a time when it was almost unknown in New Zealand. Russell set himself a first goal: the Olympic Games. After winning the World Championships of 1981 in the Finn Olympic Class, he prepared himself for the Games of 1984, bringing back a Gold Medal from Los Angeles.
In 1995 Russell skippered New Zealand’s 'Black Magic' to an overwhelming five straight wins over Dennis Conner and the team from the United States, in the final of the 29th America's Cup. Leading up to the America's Cup finals he helmed 'Black Magic' to win the Louis Vuitton Cup with an unprecedented 37 - 1 record victories on the water.
In 2000 Team New Zealand’s NZL60, with Russell as skipper and head of their “sailing campaign”, repeated their 5-0 victory streak over Italian Challenger 'Prada', creating history by becoming the first ever syndicate to successfully defend the America’s Cup outside the USA.
Russell was Skipper of 'Alinghi', Switzerland's successful Challenger for the America's Cup, in 2003. Russell again created history by putting together 'Alinghi' – an international team - and taking the Cup to Europe for the first time in history.
Russell Coutts travels from Switzerland