America's Cup Hall of Fame induction ceremony brings together past and the future of the Cup
[Source: America's Cup Hall of Fame] On the night of April 30, 2009 the Herreshoff Marine Museum / America's Cup Hall of Fame inducted John Biddle, Thomas Ratsey, and John Longley AM into the America's Cup Hall of Fame at a spectacular evening at the New York Yacht Club in Manhattan, presented by Rolex Watch USA. The evening's keynote speaker, Sir Keith Mills, provided a challenger's perspective on the current status of the Cup, and discussed the history of British challengers.
Presentations by Gary Jobson included a reel of Cup highlights, as well as vignettes on each inductee. John Rousmaniere spoke about the Cup's history, particularly as recorded at the New York Yacht Club and its collection of models and artwork.
The late John Biddle's son and daughter, Scott and Sophie, accepted his award on his behalf, and his wife Amy acknowledged how pleased John had been to be nominated.
The America's Cup Hall of Fame induction ceremony. New York, 30 April 2009. Photo copyright Daniel Forster / America's Cup Hall of Fame
Thomas Ratsey, founder of Ratsey & Lapthorn sailmakers, providers of sails to many of the classic America's Cup yachts, was next inducted; his award was accepted by his descendant Cynthia Ratsey Young and her husband Tom.
The third inductee, John Longley, AM, was introduced by Tom Schnackenberg. John regaled the crowd with stories of his Cup experiences on Southern Cross, Australia, and Australia II, as well as his work towards the creation of the IACC rule.
Guests included Brad Butterworth and Murray Jones of Alinghi, Stephen Barclay and Tom Ehman of BMW ORACLE Racing, Alan Brill, President of Rolex Watch USA, Alessandra Pandarese and Margherita Botini of Mascalzone Latino, Sotiris Buseas of Greek Challenge, Bruno Troublé and America's Cup Hall of Fame Selection Committee chair, Dyer Jones.
President of the Herreshoff Marine Museum / America's Cup Hall of Fame, Halsey Herreshoff, served as master of ceremonies for the evening.
Sir Keith Mills (left), principal of Team Origin, and Sotiris Buseas, CEO of Greek Challenge. New York, 30 April 2009. Photo copyright Daniel Forster / America's Cup Hall of Fame