Ainslie update

The Round the Island this week, following by a summer with Alfa Romeo and then some more match racing...
With the present hiatus in the America’s Cup, so TeamOrigin skipper and helmsman and newly anointed CBE, Ben Ainslie would have a little more time on his hands you might think. However despite the lack of any progress on the Cup front, his sailing program has miraculously filled itself up including many events where he and his crew will be flying the TeamOrigin flag, despite Sir Keith Mills’ cup campaign being all but wound down. In this weekend’s JPMorgan Asset Management Round the Island Race, if you see a two hulled blur of blue, black and white shooting past you, then it could well the TeamOrigin cat on which Ainslie will be helming alongside team boss Mike Sanderson, big George Skuados and Matt Cornwall. “The only guy who has sailed on the boat before is Catflap [Cornwall],” says Ainslie. “So it might make some good photo shots…” Most recently Ainslie has been revitalising his participation on the World Match Racing Tour. This he does as part of TeamOrigin with Iain Percy calling tactics (although the Star Gold medallist helm has been spotting from time to time in front of the mast…), Cornwall once again doing bow and with former Peter Gilmour crewman Mike Mottl and ex-Luna Rossa trimmer Christian Kamp in the middle. Ainslie and the TeamOrigin posse got off to a fine start to their 2009 Tour winning Match Race Germany at the end of May. “Germany was interesting,” says Ainslie. “The first day, we had a really tough day. I guess the boats there are very different being big heavy cruising boats. So it took a while to get our heads around that. We didn’t sail that well. But then on in, the breeze came up a bit, we got a bit of confidence back and started sailing really well