It's a little over six months since Land Rover BAR made it through to the semi-finals of the 35th America's Cup, where they were knocked out by the eventual winners, Emirates Team New Zealand 5-2.
The Cup went back to New Zealand, and Land Rover BAR went back to Britain having announced their intent to continue and challenge for the next America's Cup.
Six months on from Bermuda, Ben Ainslie is looking aheadů
What are your thoughts on the last campaign?
As a new team, we were playing a game of catch up all the way through the campaign and it was a steep learning curve. Although we didn't achieve our ultimate goal of winning the America's Cup there were many highlights, including moving into our Portsmouth HQ, building and launching our test and race boats, winning the Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series, bringing together a great team of supportive partners, Land Rover BAR Academy's success in the Red Bull Youth America's Cup and finally launching our Official Charity, the 1851 Trust.
What learnings have you taken from the 35th America's Cup? Coming home from Bermuda, it was clear we had done a great job maturing the organisation, particularly commercially. Looking back at the technical strategy we got ahead of ourselves a little bit; we started off with quite a good plan, but we ultimately failed to be able to get enough focus onto the key performance differentiators.
How is the team moving forward into 36th America's Cup?
Since coming home from Bermuda, we have been looking back at the last campaign taking the positives from the successes and learnings for areas that can be improved. The Technical team have really got on top of the technical strategy, getting more structure into the team. Recently, we further strengthened this area with the appointment of Nick Holroyd as Chief Designer. It's fantastic he's agreed to join the team. Adding his skillset and experience to our technical line up has greatly strengthened the team.
Grant Simmer has also joined as new CEO what does he bring to the team?
I have always wanted Grant to be involved and he was very close to joining when we initially started the team in 2014. He has won the America's Cup four times and has been involved in every side of an America's Cup team, there are very few people with experience at that level across sailing, design, technical management and finance and with a great personality. Grant and I have a very strong relationship, which will be key to creating a winning team.