ATLANTA – The best America's Cup television over the weekend was not necessarily the live AC35 shows on NBC from Bermuda, but the production by NBC Sports Films that aired Saturday immediately following the AC35 telecast on NBC (the main network) called "Courageous." TFE recommends the Michael Douglas-narrated documentary to sailors and non-sailors alike. From the NBC press release touting the show:
Courageous, named for the boat that [Ted] Turner captained, examines his journey to win and defend the America’s Cup, and explores his tireless pursuit throughout the decade to build the iconic Turner media and sports empire which included CNN, TBS, the Atlanta Braves, Atlanta Hawks, and Goodwill Games.
While suspended from running the Braves and working through the infancy and challenges of early cable television with his SuperStation, Turner became fixated with winning the 1977 America’s Cup. The unconventional pioneer bet his reputation and image on the victory, and saw glory in a 4-year-old boat and a crew that others had written off.
Courageous features interviews with Turner, his America’s Cup crew members, and sailing historians. Additionally the film includes archival footage from the 1977 America’s Cup and Turner’s multifaceted career, an interview with Braves legend and current Atlanta Braves Senior Vice President Hank Aaron, as well as never before seen footage and interviews.
There's also a lot of great historical footage from the Newport AC era and even before, courtesy of NYYC, Mystic Seaport, Dick Enersen's Offshore Productions (whose 1977 Film "The Best Defense" was excerpted and used throughout the show), Gary Jobson, and more.
Enjoy watching it here.
1977 photo of the winning America's Cup crew aboard COURAGEOUS courtesy of NBC.