America’s Cup racing now goes to extremes Massive modern catamarans leave the old America’s Cup Twelves far behind ← Related Article Visit The Boston Globe Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Comment on this Scroll to top of page Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff The America's Cup World Series is bringing its competition to Newport this weekend for four days of racing. Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff The America's Cup hasn't been to Newport since 1983, and has gone through monumental changes since then. Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff Sailors are now finely-tuned athletes who wear helmets and body armor. Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff The high-powered catamarans perform acrobatic moves and keep crewmembers perpetually in motion. Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff Once a sport held 4 miles offshore, the America's Cup series now occurs inside the harbor in view of the Newport mansions. Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff Fans are able to turn out to see the boats and the racing up close. Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff The 45-foot catamarans used in the America's Cup series need a crane to put them in and out of the water. Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff The America's Cup series is a precursor to the finals in September 2013, when the America's Cup will be awarded in San Francisco.