Friday, February 5, 2010

Louis Vuitton Trophy Hong Kong regatta to be sailed on Victoria Harbour

Hong Kong Harbour with its unique skyline and 'always busy' waterways is one of the most iconic maritime settings in the world. The 14-day long Louis Vuitton Trophy regatta, scheduled for 9th to 23rd January 2011, will take place on this perfect natural arena.

When Louis Vuitton and the World Sailing Teams Association (WSTA) conceived the Louis Vuitton Trophy regattas they were designed to take the best sailing teams in the world sailing some of the largest and most impressive racing yachts to some of the most spectacular parts of the world and compete at the highest level in the discipline of match racing. One of the other objectives was to bring the action as close to spectators as possible, not just through media and TV but also physically close to where people are.

Organised in conjunction with the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club (RHKYC), a sailing and rowing club with over 160 years of history and one of the world’s most active sailing institutions today, the Louis Vuitton Trophy Hong Kong regatta will mark the culmination of a huge amount of work done by the club’s members and staff. The best sailing teams in the world representing 8 to 10 nations will be competing in this event. This sailing activity will see 7 days of pre-regatta training and 14 days of competition before the winner is known.

RHKYC Commodore Warwick Downes commented: “The Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club will have the very great honour of hosting Asia’s first Louis Vuitton Trophy. This event, one of the pinnacles on the yachting calendar, will demonstrate that Hong Kong is an ideal venue for major international sailing events. The Louis Vuitton Trophy Hong Kong will not only benefit the sailing community here but will also deliver a positive economic impact to Hong Kong. With these boats and our spectacular harbour beamed around the world daily for the two weeks of racing, I can’t think of a better way to showcase Brand Hong Kong internationally.”

The Louis Vuitton Trophy race course will be set on the stretch of water just to the South of the now disused legendary Kai Tak Airport and the Race Village, itself a major attraction, is planned for Pier 10 alongside the terminal of the iconic Star Ferry.

The prevailing winds in Victoria Harbour are from the East at between 12 to 15 knots in January and given the geography of the harbour it will be possible for sailing fans and curious passers by to witness the spectacle from numerous vantage points along the harbour, as the yachts approach both shores on their way around the course, without needing to get afloat.

For those unable to be on the Hong Kong waterfront in person the Louis Vuitton Trophy hybrid TV and Virtual video feed will allow race fans around the world to witness the sporting action in this amazing natural amphitheatre.

Karl Kwok, the President of the Hong Kong Sailing Federation and one of Asia’s better-known international sailors had this to say: “Besides the economic benefits this event will bring to Hong Kong the experiences and actions of the high caliber sailors competing here will more than inspire our local sailing community and fans helping to position the city on the world sailing map. And on behalf of that community I would like to sincerely thank the HKSAR Government for their endorsement and assistance in bringing this event to fruition and I wish the regatta great success.”

About Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club (RHKYC)
Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club (RHKYC) is one of the oldest sports clubs in Hong Kong and is proud of its rich, colourful history, which stretches back over 160 years of social and competitive sailing and rowing. RHKYC provides sailing courses for members and non-members at various levels to nurture the development of sailing.