Louis Vuitton Cup: Press Release
LV Returns to Sponsor Challenger Series

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Louis Vuitton Cup 2013
Press Release

November 27, 2010

The next major step in realizing its new vision, the America’s Cup Event Authority introduced its first partner, Louis Vuitton. A continuation of its 30-year long association with the America’s Cup, the Paris-based fashion house will present the prize, the Louis Vuitton Cup, to the winner of the America’s Cup Challenger Series, as well as serve as Official Timing for the 34th America’s Cup.


Photo:©2010 Gilles Martin-Raget/BMW Oracle Racing
The Louis Vuitton Cup Returns to the America's Cup for 2013!
(L to R) Bruno Troublé, Russell Coutts (CEO BMW Oracle), Yves Carcelle (Chairman/CEO LVM) holding the LVC, Richard Worth (Chairman ACEA), Pietro Beccari (EVP LVM)

“We are thrilled to announce today the continuation of our 30-year partnership with the America’s Cup. Having met with the team several times, we believe that the 34th edition will be the best America’s Cup yet,” said Yves Carcelle, Chairman and CEO of Louis Vuitton Malletier.

In 2013, the Challenger Series will be staged with the winner earning the right to compete in the America’s Cup Finals. The Challenger series will be once again called the Louis Vuitton Cup, recognizing the brand’s long partnership with the America’s Cup.

In addition, Louis Vuitton will be Official Timing for the America’s Cup World Series competitions, promoting its watch collection.

“We are extremely privileged that our vision for the next America’s Cup has attracted the return of a company like Louis Vuitton,” said Richard Worth, Chairman, America’s Cup Event Authority. “The 34th America’s Cup will culminate in 2013, marking the 30th anniversary of Louis Vuitton’s support of the sport of sailing, so we could not be more proud to see this great partnership continue and strengthen.”

Since 1983, the Louis Vuitton Cup Challenger Series has been held whenever there has been more than one challenger team for the America’s Cup. Its role is twofold -- to select the best challenger team from the teams presented and, to prepare the winner for success against the Defender in the following America’s Cup Finals.

“I have competed for the Louis Vuitton Cup three times in the past, so I know how important it is to the Challenger’s success. We welcome the return of Louis Vuitton and look forward to racing the winner of the Louis Vuitton Cup in 2013,” said Russell Coutts, CEO, BMW Oracle Racing.

The Louis Vuitton Cup will be in the summer of 2013, with the America’s Cup Finals in early fall. The events will feature the AC72 wing-masted catamaran, a ground-breaking new boat designed to deliver unparalleled racing competition and on-the-water excitement.

"Louis Vuitton is a House that cherishes the art of travel and the spirit of adventure. As a long-time partner, we are very happy to be able to accompany the future of the America's Cup," said Pietro Beccari, Executive Vice-President of Louis Vuitton.

Winning Traditions: About Louis Vuitton and the America's Cup:

Since 1983, the Louis Vuitton Cup Challenger Series has been held whenever there has been more than one challenger team with America’s Cup ambitions.

Its role is twofold: to select the best challenger team from the teams presented and, to provide the most meaningful competition to the challenger teams so that the winner of the series has received the best possible preparation for success against the Defender in the following America’s Cup Match.

In the 25 attempts the America’s Cup had been raced for before 1983, the challenger had never once prevailed over the Defender.  But over the past 27 years there have been seven Louis Vuitton Cup competitions (’83, ’87, ’92, ’95, ’00, ’07), and four of those seven Louis Vuitton Cup winners have gone on to beat the Defender in the following America’s Cup Match.

In 1983 Australian John Bertrand steered Australia II, the legendary wing-keeled yacht, to victory in the first Louis Vuitton Cup in Newport, RI, USA.  History tells us how, once in the Match and armed with the Louis Vuitton Cup experience, Bertrand eventually won the America’s Cup and ended the longest winning streak in sports -- 132 years.

“In the summer of 1983 we changed the course of America’s Cup history.  The win is still considered one of the most significant events in modern Australia.  But to win the America’s Cup we first had to win the Louis Vuitton Cup. At that time Louis Vuitton became custodians of the history and traditions of the America’s Cup creating an unique aura around the event. Long may it continue,” John Bertrand, Skipper Australia II.

The phrase “To win the America’s Cup first win the Louis Vuitton Cup” proved to hold true again in 1987 when Dennis Conner, the beaten American skipper from 1983, came to Perth, Australia.  With his yacht Stars & Stripes he won a hard fought Louis Vuitton Cup against 12 other teams before racing for the America’s Cup. Here he swept the floor against the defending Australians and returned the America’s Cup to America.

In 1992 the stylish Italian challenger Il Moro di Venezia, skippered by the charismatic Paul Cayard, won the Louis Vuitton Cup in San Diego, CA, USA and then raced for the Cup against the American Defender.  In the first event sailed in the new America’s Cup Class the Defender’s design technology proved superior to the Italians’ and the Cup stayed put.

In 1995 Sir Peter Blake’s Team New Zealand efficiently sailed through the four month long Louis Vuitton Cup in San Diego almost unbeaten.  Winning the Louis Vuitton Cup, skipper Russell Coutts then went on to beat the Defender in the Match and take the Cup to New Zealand.  Italy returned to the America’s Cup in 2000 with the glamorous and fast Luna Rossa.  Skippered by Francesco di Angelis, the team won the Louis Vuitton Cup in Auckland only to fall against the Kiwi Defender in the Match and the America’s Cup stayed put.

In 2003 the Swiss Alinghi team skippered by Russell Coutts won the second Louis Vuitton Cup held in Auckland, and this time the Challenger beat the Defender in the match to bring the America’s Cup to Europe for the first time. Europe’s first America’s Cup was hosted in Valencia, Spain in 2007.  Having regained their composure from their loss of the Cup four years earlier Emirates Team New Zealand proved to be the class act amongst the challengers again and prevailed at the Louis Vuitton Cup.  But at the match for the Cup the team didn’t quite manage to convert their winning ways, ultimately losing to Alinghi in the closest match since 1983.

“Winning the Louis Vuitton Cup in 2007 was the most significant success I have had.  It was extremely important for our team as well when looking back at our long history.  I am hoping to compete in the 2013 Louis Vuitton Cup in the new catamaran class. I t will be very different but hugely exciting,” Dean Barker Skipper of Emirates Team New Zealand, current holder of the Louis Vuitton Cup and winner of three out of four Louis Vuitton Trophy regattas.

The dates and venues for the first season of the new America’s Cup World Series will be announced at the end of January 2011.

The 2012 and 2013 seasons will have their programs announced in September 2011. The next Louis Vuitton Cup will be held over a six week period in the Summer of 2013. Significantly this will mark the 30th anniversary of Australia II’s famous Louis Vuitton and America’s Cups wins in 1983.

The first of two exciting new classes proposed for the America’s Cup World Series will be the wing-masted AC45 catamaran, the prototype of which is currently under construction in Auckland, New Zealand and a production run will see every team racing in these One Design boats in 2011.

In parallel all teams will be designing and building the second new class, the much larger AC72 essentially a larger version of the 45 but the product of each team’s own designers and builders. This second class will be used for the 2012 and 2013 seasons.

About Louis Vuitton
The world leader in luxury, Louis Vuitton has been synonymous with the art of stylish travel since 1854.  Since 1987, it has been part of LVMH/Moët-Hennessy-Louis Vuitton, the world's most prestigious luxury goods group headed by Bernard Arnault.  Since 1997, with the arrival of the designer Marc Jacobs, it has extended its expertise to women's and men's ready-to-wear, shoes, watches and jewelry, eyewear, combining traditional craftsmanship with flair and innovation to create a complete lifestyle experience.  Today, Louis Vuitton has an exclusive network of stores all across the world. 

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