There has been a lot of emphasis on America's Cup boat design so far but let's not forget about the personalities and teamwork which have always been the critical ingredient that has decided the outcome.
Some commentators are lamenting the low number of teams for the 36th America's Cup in Auckland early next year, but the great thing is that all of them are extremely strong.
In contrast to some previous America's Cup regattas, there are no rookies or low budget challengers looking to "gain experience". All four teams are serious contenders who have the ability to win.
It means a regatta of high pressure involving some pretty big egos which should make for the usual America's Cup friction, and not just between the sailing teams.
There are a number of powerful individuals providing financial support for these teams and they will expect their teams to win. If they prove not to be competitive, the pressure to make changes will build. This internal pressure can fracture teams and eventually blow them apart.
The essential components of a winning America's Cup team are leadership, team culture, talent, experience and resources. I will add in luck, although in my experience the team with the best combination of the above factors tends to create its own good fortune.
Here's how the four teams stack up in terms of key personnel.
1) Emirates Team New Zealand
The home team has talent, experience and home water advantage.
They also had a head-start in that they created the design rule and were able to develop their thinking about their design months before the challengers.
Team leaders Grant Dalton and Kevin Shoebridge, whose America's Cup involvement goes all the way back to New Zealand's first challenge off Fremantle in 1987, provide terrific experience and determination.
Their design team, led by Dan Bernasconi, is very smart. The work ethic and Kiwi ingenuity of a shore team led by Sean Regan gives ETNZ a solid, hard to fault group supporting the sailing squad.
The sailors are proven and versatile with a compelling record of success in high performance sport. Peter Burling, Blair Tuke and Glenn Ashby are all Olympic medallists and multiple world champions.
Add in the athletic grunt and capacity of Joe Sullivan, Simon van Velthooven, Steven Ferguson (son of Olympic legend Ian Ferguson), Andy Maloney and Josh Junior, among others and it's a sailing crew without a weakness.
Summary: Would I swap any key members of Emirates Team New Zealand with someone from another team? Easy answer: No.
2) Ineos Team UK
This team has talent, experience, budget and motivation – and a lot of Kiwis and Aussies in key roles.
They are led by the most successful Olympic sailor in history Sir Ben Ainslie, and include Olympic and world champions in Giles Scott (Great Britain), Xabier Fernandez (Spain) and, most importantly, the massive assets of Australians Iain Jensen and Joey Newton on the sailing crew.
Ineos have depth and talent. They have the most experienced America's Cup campaigner of any team in Australian Grant Simmer, and ex-Team New Zealand members Nick Holroyd, Andy McLean, Giovanni Belgrano and Jono Macbeth.
Summary: This team is strong, determined and experienced. The big question: Will their boat be competitive?
3) American Magic
Kiwi Dean Barker is being driven by a thirst for redemption more than any sailor in the world.
Imagine the satisfaction if he could prove all the doubters wrong by beating the team that dumped him on home waters. The key question is not whether Barker has the necessary talent and experience, but has he got the team to produce a competitive boat and out-perform the others?
Terry Hutchinson's leadership is vital. He has experience with Team New Zealand (in Valencia, 2007) and has already made good calls including pushing to arrive in Auckland before the other challengers.
The team also have an important asset in British Olympic gold medal winner and 2019 world Moth champion Paul Goodison, but the pressure will quickly mount on this team from their backers in the US if they are not competitive.
Summary: The New York Yacht Club does not like losing and if this team does not produce strong results early expect some Trumpesque "You're Fired" behaviour.
4) Luna Rossa Challenge
Recruiting Jimmy Spithill was a very smart move by the Italians. He brings experience, determination, a great work ethic and the smarts to a team which has not been in the game for a while now.
However, the expectations and tendency of their funder Patrizio Bertelli to "go off" about things could be a big problem for them. He appears to be tired of Luna Rossa being the nice guys who come second, has become impatient, and wants them to deliver nothing less than a win. Combine that with Spithill's personality and there could be fireworks.
Summary: Without Spithill, Luna Rossa would look light on recent experience, certainly in winning at America's Cup level. His leadership will be key for this team when the heat comes on.
All the teams have respect for one another. Most of them have sailed against and with one another over many years.
Will they "play nicely" in the 36th America's Cup? Perhaps, but given the history of the event and what is at stake, probably not.
There are too many egos (often the funders rather than the sailors), too much motivation, too many opportunities for redemption and too many individuals involved who relish the mind-games for it to be smooth sailing this summer.
It'll be a fascinating and captivating few months, both on and off the water.
Latest update: American Magic's second boat has arrived in NZ. The Ineos Team UK's second boat is on its way. The Italian second boat is close to being finished – but will be the last to arrive in Auckland. Team New Zealand have placed the "cone of silence" on progress on their second boat – but it must be close to being finished. Expect them to keep it hidden until the others have shown theirs first.
- Professor Mark Orams is the Dean of the Graduate Research School at Auckland University of Technology and is a former member of Team New Zealand. He was also part of Sir Peter Blake's winning Whitbread around the world yacht race crew aboard Steinlager 2.