America's Cup 2021: Profiles - Dean Barker (American Magic)

  • 01/01/2021


Born: April 18, 1973 (47)

Role: American Magic helmsman 

America's Cup campaigns: 6

The America's Cup veteran is entering his sixth regatta - with four of them with Team NZ, before moving to Team Japan as chief executive and skipper at Bermuda 2017, and now helmsman with American Magic. 

Barker's first campaign came way back in 2000, when he helped the Kiwis defend the Cup as the back-up helmsman. After skipper Russell Coutts defected to Alinghi, Barker stepped up into the role for 2003. 

It was a tough introduction for the Auckland native, with Alinghi thrashing his side 5-0, but he remained skipper and helmsman for the 2007 challenge.

Barker's career lowlight came at San Francisco 2013. With Team NZ cruising at 8-1 up - one win away from regaining the 'Auld Mug' - Baker seemed powerless, as Oracle Team USA recorded the largest comeback in America's Cup history.

His 19-year stay with Team NZ ended after a fallout with boss Grant Dalton and Barker signed with Japan for the 2017 regatta.

Away from the America's Cup, Barker won a match-racing gold medal at the 2000 world championships. In 2004, he represented New Zealand at the Athens Olympics in Finn class, finishing 13th out of 25 competitors.