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Harold Vanderbilt

Gentleman sailor

April 25, 2002
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Vanderbilt (1884-1970), a Harvard Law graduate was born to extreme wealth and used it wisely, investing in J-boats for the defense of the America’s Cup. He successfully defended three times, Enterprise (1930), Rainbow (1934), and the mighty Ranger (1937), last of the J-Class.

In 1934, sailing Rainbow, Vanderbilt (1884-1970), had a tiger by the tale with challenger _ Endeavour_, which won the first two races of the series. Vanderbilt, who helmed for all three defenses, and tactician Sherman Hoyt, battled back against the well-sailed _ Endeavour_, and won the next three races, defeating one of the strongest challenges to the Cup up to that point.

A good sailor and tactician, Vanderbilt also won six King’s Cups and five Astor Cups between 1922 and 1938, and helped create the racing rules as we know them today.

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