Tuesday, September 8, 2009



November Event in Nice will Count for 2010 Series Trophy

Paris, September 8th, 2009 - The Mayor of Nice, the World Sailing Team Association (WSTA) and Louis Vuitton are pleased to announce that the first Louis Vuitton World Series event will be held in Nice, France on the 7- 22 November 2009.

The WSTA and Louis Vuitton believe Nice is the ideal venue to launch the Series. Christian Estrosi the Mayor of Nice and President of Nice Côte d”Azur explains: “We are very proud to associate Nice with such prestigious names in the sailing world as Newport and Auckland whilst joining forces with Louis Vuitton to set up such a renowned sailing partnership. With the “Baie des Anges”, we offer an exceptional spot to an exceptional race“.

The Louis Vuitton World Series is an outgrowth of the successful and highly-competitive Louis Vuitton Pacific Series that took place in Auckland in February earlier this year. The launch of the LVWS is positive news for top-tier professional sailors as it guarantees a global world series aboard high-tech Version 5 ACC monohull racing boats. The series will feature a 10-team field competing in shared ACC yachts in a round robin, one-on-one match racing format where the two finalists go head-to-head to determine the winner. Points will be accumulated throughout the series to determine the ranking of the season.|

The second Louis Vuitton World Series event is scheduled for March 2010 in Auckland, New Zealand, followed by a Series in La Maddalena (Italy) in May 2010.

Organizers are also evaluating interest from other international cities to complete the racing calendar for 2010 and 2011. Bruno Troublé, creator of the Louis Vuitton Cup and LVWS spokesperson comments: “We have received serious interest from cities like Athens, Greece; Valencia, Spain; Newport, RI, USA; Cape Town, South Africa; Hong Kong, and Abu Dhabi to host future events. “ The WSTA and Louis Vuitton will announce more events (2010/2011) during the Nice regatta this year.”

The Series, confirmed September 2, is attracting world-class professional teams as well international waterfront cities for hosting future events.

Teams confirmed for the first event in Nice include: BMW ORACLE Racing (USA), Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL), Italia by Joe Fly (ITA), K-Challenge (FRA), Mascalzone Latino (ITA), Swedish Challenge Artemis (SWE), Synergy Russian Sailing Team (RUS) and Team French Spirit (FRA) .

Pietro Beccari, Executive Vice President of Louis Vuitton, in charge of Marketing and Communication, notes: “We only announced the Series last week and already another four teams have expressed interest for the remaining two berths for Nice. We will soon confirm the remaining teams for the LVWS – Nice.”

K-Challenge, which has helped in establishing Nice as the Host City for the November event, will serve as Host Team in Nice. Stephane Kandler, K-Challenge's CEO: "The Louis Vuitton World Series is the result of hard teamwork between the WSTA teams and Louis Vuitton. We are very proud at K-Challenge to have played a key role in setting up the first event in France with the City of Nice where we will be the Host Team. We look forward making it a real success. This circuit is a new era for our sport."

All the LVWS events will be sanctioned by ISAF, the international sailing governing body and will take place over the next two years alongside the America’s Cup, but will not compete with the pinnacle of sailing. The format is cost-effective – teams don’t have to build boats – accessible, and turnkey for the participants.

Yves Carcelle, Louis Vuitton’s Chairman and CEO, is delighted with this new chapter, which complements but is separate from their 25 year association with the Cup: “In the wake of the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series, which brought a breath of fresh air to the sailing world, this Series will allow, once again, the teams to come together in a competitive but friendly atmosphere.”

Grant Dalton, CEO of ETNZ and a WSTA founding team explains: “The Louis Vuitton Pacific Series was a great success. It seemed logical to try and build on this and that is what we have done. It is a win-win situation for Louis Vuitton, the teams and the host cities.”

Russell Coutts, CEO of BMW ORACLE Racing, a WSTA founding team, explains: “Sailing teams at the top of the sport require sponsorship. Sponsors require an annual global calendar of compelling events. And the sailors seek a highly-competitive series where they can face their toughest opponents on a fair playing field. We see this Series as addressing all of those elements and are excited by the potential.”