Crowds congregate on Auckland’s waterfront bridge to watch the America’s Cup races. Photo / Alex Burton
Auckland’s waterfront venues have been basking in success in the NZ Team America’s Cup with crowded bars and restaurants for three straight days.
The final day of the World Boat Championships saw crowds flock to the bridge in the glorious December sun, as NZ defeated American Magic and Luna Rossa in two spectacular races to claim the overall title.
The race did not start until after 4 pm, and was more than an hour late at first due to light winds, then again as spectator boats set off within the race boundaries after changing the direction of the winds.
But back on Earth, the bridge was teeming with gamblers crowding bars, restaurants and fan zones.
Half a dozen places the Herald spoke of reported blocky homes, but great feelings everywhere.
A manager at O’Hagan Irish Pub said the last weekend before Christmas also added to the excitement.
“It was very busy, a lot of families today and a lot of people watching the race.
“It’s the last weekend before Christmas, so everyone goes out and there are a lot of Christmas parties too, but even with only races it will be busy no matter what.
“Crowds were good though, great feelings.”
A manager at St Alice also reported a “full house”, along with several waterfront hotspots.
The energy is set to last until Sunday with another full afternoon of racing and good weather forecast.
Sunday will see teams compete for the Christmas Cup in a knockout boat race, with groups from the World Championships forming semi-final pairs.
The first race is scheduled to begin at 3.12pm.