The tears in Mandy Ingham’s eyes are not ones of sorrow, but of joy and pride in her son, Mustafa, a member of TeamBDA, the island’s entry into the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup.
Ms Ingham has always wanted success for her child, as any parent would, and after years of encouraging, cajoling and supporting that achievement is on the verge of being realised.
Mustafa Ingham is part of something historic, a team of Bermudians taking on the world’s best as part of the third biggest sporting event in the world for the first time. His mother’s pride is plain for all to see.
Speaking through tears in a new short film highlighting the journey of TeamBDA, she calls the emotions “overwhelming”.
“At this point it [the America’s Cup] is just around the corner,” she says, before stopping to compose herself once again.
“There has been a lot of time and energy concentrated just in this time. It’s very hard to even put into words how I feel.”
That pride is multiplied across all the families of the sailors taking part. The monumental nature of the month ahead is not lost on any of them. “This is the first ever, we don’t know if it’s going to repeat again in Bermuda or not,” says one supporter. “This is big.”
All the members of TeamBDA have taken different roads on their journey to this point, some natural sailors, others athletes with little or no sailing experience whatsoever. All, now, are acting as one. “As others kind of hear his story and kind of watch all of them grow as a team, I think it will also thread into our community and I can see in the long term [that] bringing us closer together,” Ms Ingham says.
In the film Mustafa is asked how a footballer from Hamilton Parish got to be a sailor for TeamBDA. “Just determination,” is the reply. That attitude ripples through all the members of the team, and comes across as strongly as any other emotion the film evokes — except pride, that is all enveloping.
The film also highlights one simple message. The America’s Cup will be Mustafa’s Cup, it will be his family’s Cup, and in TeamBDA it will be Bermuda’s Cup.
Learn more about the young Bermudians representing our island in the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup at a special free screening of two short films on them and their journeys at Liberty Theatre on Monday from 5.30pm to 7pm. Places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.
Come and learn more about your TeamBDA ahead of the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup which starts on June 12. For tickets to the racing visit www.america’scup.com/tickets.