Australia will challenge for the next America's Cup after the Hamilton Island Yacht Club was confirmed as the challenger of record to Cup holder Oracle Team USA on Tuesday (AEST).
The club is led by Australian winemaker Bob Oatley, whose super-maxi yacht Wild Oats XI has won the Sydney to Hobart yacht race six times, and is the defending champion.
The Golden Gate Yacht Club, the defender of the Cup through Oracle Team USA, announced the challenge and its acceptance in a statement.
"We are delighted to have Hamilton Island Yacht Club and the Oatley's leading Australia back into the America's Cup for the first time since 2000," said Golden Gate Yacht Club vice commodore and America's Cup liaison Tom Ehman.
"Hamilton Island's challenge was filed on the day Australia was celebrating the 30th anniversary of Australia II's historic win in the 1983 America's Cup off Newport, Rhode Island, which ended New York Yacht Club's 132-year reign as the Cup's defender."
Oracle won the Cup 9-8 over Team New Zealand after a stunning comeback from 8-1 down. The Cup was contested with 72-foot catamarans, although there is no guarantee that the same boats will be used next time.
Oatley was quoted in the statement looking forward to the 35th edition of the race.
"Given Australia's previous success in the America's Cup, the Admiral's Cup and Olympic yachting, and as proud Australians, we think it is time for our nation to be back in our sport's pinnacle event," Oatley was quoted in the statement.
"The recently completed America's Cup in San Francisco has revolutionised the sport for sailors and fans, and we were excited to see how many Australians played key roles on the teams and in the regatta organization."
The dates, types of boat, format and rules for the next Cup series will be subject to negotiation between Oracle and the challenger of record.
A protocol is expected to be finalised in the first half of 2014.
More to follow.