Australia II Racing Yacht
Australia II (KA 6) is an Australian 12-metre-class America’s Cup challenge racing yacht that was launched in 1982 and won the 1983 America’s Cup for the Royal Perth Yacht Club. Skippered by John Bertrand, she was the first successful Cup challenger, ending a 132-year tenure (with 26 successful defences) by the New York Yacht Club.
Australia II was designed by Ben Lexcen, built by Steve Ward, owned by Alan Bond and helmed by John Bertrand. Lexcen’s Australia II design featured a reduced waterline length and a short chord winged keel which gave the boat a significant advantage in manoeuvrability and heeling moment (lower ballast center of gravity) but it was a significant disadvantage in choppy seas. The boat was also very quick in stays. The winged keel was a major design advance, and its legality was questioned by the New York Yacht Club. During the summer of 1983, as selection trials took place for the Cup defence that autumn, the New York Yacht Club challenged the legality of the keel design. The controversy was decided in Australia II‘s favour.
The model is 100% hand built individually using plank-on-frame construction method and are similar to the building of actual ships. Each model requires hundreds of hours to finish and must go through a demanding quality control process before leaving the workshop. This is truly beautiful model of the Australia II with exquisite details from the deck works to the hull. All fittings are made of stainless steel. The model rests on an unique wood inlay marquetry stand for outstanding display.