Telecom says it is "taking the excitement of the America's Cup into New Zealand classrooms" with a virtual yacht racing Website.
The site is called TACTICS (Telecom's America's Cup 2000 Interactive Challenge Series) and Telecom describes it as an "online learning resource" aimed principally at 3rd and 4th formers.
TACTICS allows online sailors to race against one another by using a custom-built application that can be downloaded from the Internet and connected to a multi-user server.
Telecom says the application is proving popular not only with school students, but also America's Cup followers, sailors and other Internet users.
Telecom External Brand Manager, Gillian Vosper says TACTICS is a fun way for students to use online technology to learn the basic principles of sailing.
"TACTICS gives cyber-yachties a chance to assess the changeable weather of the Hauraki Gulf, name and design their boat, choose a crew, learn to sail and chat with fellow competitors before taking to the water to race.
"In addition to its emphasis on technology, TACTICS includes activities focusing on social studies, maths, English and physical education in a fun and interactive environment."
Telecom is offering a monthly prize of America's Cup clothing for the racing leader board at the end of each month. There will also be a school prize for the school awarded at the end of the America's Cup next March.
TACTICS is one of this year's Telecom Education Foundation (TEF) classroom activities.
The site is at www.telecom.co.nz/Tactics