The Japan boat skippered by Lake Macquarie Olympic gold medallists Nathan Outteridge is among the early favourites in the inaugural SailGp event starting on Sydney Harbour on Friday.
A fleet of six supercharged F50 catamarans capable of reaching speeds up to 90km/h will represent different nations in the two-day six-race event.
With Outteridge having accumulated more hours than any of the other skippers in driving a similar boat in the last America's Cup, Japan is considered the team to beat this week.
"I love how everyone keeps saying were the favourites, all of the guys up here have got incredible talent," Outteridge said at the skipper's media conference on Thursday.
The boats, also from the US, France, China and Great Britain, will clash in five races with the two best meeting in Saturday afternoon's final.
A star-studded cast of Olympic medallists, America's Cup sailors and round the world competitors are sprinkled among the crews, who will contest the short inshore races.
The series will have two legs in the US and one each in England and France.
The two leading pointscorers across the series will square off for a $US1million ($A1.4 million) prize in the final event in Marseilles in September.
"I'm happy with that, they can keep calling him the favourite, he does have for sure the most hours steering these boats." Slingsby told AAP.
"But I'm confident in our team and I think we can beat him if we do our job."
Some of the boats have already gone close to the 50-knot mark in the lead-up .
"It's a pretty daunting thought to be honest, lining up on Sydney Harbour for the first time with six boats going at the speeds that these boats do," New Zealander Phil Robertson, the skipper of the Chinese boat, said.
"I can probably assure all six of us sitting here are cacking ourselves a little bit not knowing what to expect.".
Slingsby said it was uncommon to see so much hype about a sailing event in Australia.