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27 May 2002, 12:20 pm
USA -77 Launched
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Daintry Conner Christens USA-77

Americas Cup
San Francisco

Team Dennis Conner christened and launched Stars & Stripes, USA-77 yesterday at a ceremony held at the team’s training compound in Long Beach, California.
300 corporate sponsors, New York Yacht Club members, family and friends attended the celebration, which marks the next phase of Conner's America's Cup challenge.

"There were a lot of smiles on a lot of faces today," said Dennis Conner after his wife Daintry ceremoniously blessed USA-77 by smashing a bottle of Moet Brut Imperial over the bow.

Until today, the team has been training in southern California for four months with Stars & Stripes USA-66, which was launched in February, and their trial horse, USA-54. The two new Stars & Stripes boats, which look remarkably similar, will begin their two-boat testing phase this week through the end of July, when the team will relocate to Auckland, New Zealand.
Veronica Brown/News Editor
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