No TP52 this year for Perc


James Boyd Photography / www.thedailysail.com
Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson on their Star campaign and what they had hoped to achieve on the Audi MedCup
Possibly it is best for their Olympic aspirations, but Star Gold medallists Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson have sadly been unable to raise the funds to fulfil their cunning plan for 2011 of campaigning the TeamOrigin TP52 on the Audi MedCup, as we discovered on a pleasant cruise to Cowes and back with them courtesy of their footwear sponsor Clarks Sport (more about this here). “We didn’t announce anything, because it was so embryonic, but myself and Andrew really enjoyed the TP52 last year and thought it was a great circuit,” admits Percy. “We went through our Star program this year and it happened to have breaks exactly where the [Audi MedCup] regattas were and we thought it would be an opportunity to get some of the guys who were involved in TeamOrigin out again because it was quite a tough decision for them [Sir Keith Mills pulling the plug on his AC campaign]. But unfortunately we weren’t able to raise the money. It is a pretty expensive class and to do it with a commercial element to it is quite difficult. It was a shame.” Percy says they gave themselves a deadline of a couple of weeks ago to raise around £1.2 million for the campaign and didn’t want to push it further and risk getting involved with something “half-cocked”. Simpson adds that while they wanted to bring back several of the TeamOrigin crew they sailed with last year, another objective of the campaign had been to harness the untapped talents of some more of their ex-British Olympic sailor compadres. “Ben, Iain and myself have been lucky enough to be involved in the America’s Cup in the past, but there doesn’t seem to be any transition into big boat racing from anyone in the UK. One of our objectives of the program was

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