San Francisco is still the best natural sailing amphitheater on earth and the very best place to hold the next America's Cup.
Last summer proved this point with:
Great racing in the finals enabled by the consistently strong and predictable winds in SF Bay. These consistently windy conditions are very rare in metropolitan sailing venues and the predictability enables exciting live viewing on TV, live streaming and on-site spectators.
Racing that was viewable by hundreds of thousands of people along miles of free shoreline, from the high rises in the City, from spectator boats in the Bay and at the official AC venues.
SF is one of the top places in the world to visit and it has terrific nearby places for visitors to enjoy on days without racing, including Carmel, Napa, Sonoma, Tahoe, etc.
Alternative venues like San Diego, Hawaii and Chicago all have some elements of what made AC34 such a great show in San Francisco. But none of them have it all like SF and each has their own sets of other problems.
Many new fans were brought to the waterfront and to the sport of sailing last summer. The images of AC34 exposed the beauty and charms of San Francisco to a global audience. So much good was done last year, but there is also much that can be done better next time around. We need boats that are capable of sailing safely in typical SF winds of 25 knots+. Shorter racing calendar. Reduced budgets. Smaller teams. Team bases in one place that spectators can visit. More Americans on the American team.
Keep the elements that worked last summer, change what didn't work. But for the good of the City, the sport and the America's Cup let's hope Larry, Russell and the City of SF can come to a mutually beneficial agreement for AC35. It's a win/win.