Sam's our man: Massive payday for top sailor
Sailor Sam Newtown helped an Australian crew claim history - and one of the biggest prize purses in his sport - with Team Australia's victory in the inaugural SailGP series in France on Monday.
The Sydney sailor, who won the America's Cup in 2013, will share in a $1.47m prize purse for his efforts across the five event season and in the thrilling finale in Marseille, France.
Newton, a multiple world 18-foot skiff champion, was part of a five-strong crew which held their nerve in a winner-take-all match race in foiling catamarans against Team Japan, lead by former Australian Olympic champion Nathan Outteridge.
But it was the Tom Slingsby skippered Australians who won the day and one of the biggest prize cheque's in sailing in the series finale in Marseilles, France.
Sailors and shore crew will all share in the prizemoney.
"We are going to split the money among the team. It's a huge effort from everyone and I can say with confidence that we wouldn't have been standing on that podium today without the support of our shore crew and other team members," Slingsby said.
Slingsby, who won gold for Australia in the Laser at the 2012 London Olympics before going in to win an America's Cup for the Oracle team, said he had never experienced anything like winning the SailGP title.
"My hands were shaking on the wheel as we approached the finish line," he said.
"I have sailed into the finish line in the Olympics and the Americas Cup and I can tell you I have never had that reaction before.
"It just shows how much the moment meant to me and to win the SailGP championship with this team."
Newton's crewmates on Team Australia also included northern beaches duo Jason Waterhouse and Ky Hurst and Newcastle's Kyle Langford.
Sydney has already been confirmed to host the opening leg of the 2020 SailGP seems.