Tag Archive | "Luna Rossa"

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Luna Rossa participates in the 50th edition of the Congressional Cup

Posted on 09 April 2014 by Valencia Sailing

[Source: Luna Rossa] Today at 11 AM local time (8 PM in Italy) will be the kick-off of the 50th edition of the Congressional Cup, the oldest and most prestigious match race event, second only to America’s Cup, where participation is by invitation only.

This year the event organizers invited Luna Rossa who decided to include the competition in the team’s preparation program for the 35th America’s Cup.

Francesco Bruni, winner of the Congressional Cup in 2010, will be the helmsman and will compete against nine crews counting some of the biggest names in the international match racing scene: Taylor Canfield, the skipper from the U.S. Virgin Islands currently number one in the international match race ranking list, British Ian Williams (second), New Zealander Phil Robertson (fourth), Australian Keith Swinton (fifth) and Frenchman Mathieu Richard (sixth). The team of Simone Ferrarese, defending champion and eighth in the world ranking list, is also participating in the event.

The Luna Rossa team consists of Francesco Bruni (helmsman), Adam Minoprio (tactician), Xabier Fernandez (mainsail trimmer), Simeon Tienpont (pitman), Pierluigi de Felice (trimmer), Max Sirena (bowman)

“The Congressional Cup is one of the most prestigious and challenging match race events in the international sailing scene,” said Max Sirena, skipper of Luna Rossa. “The match race will be the focal point of our preparation for the 35th America’s Cup and, given the high level of the crews, this event will be an important test after the winter break.”

The Congressional Cup, organized by the Long Beach Yacht Club, will run from Wednesday the 9th to Sunday the 13th of April. The crews sail with the Catalina 37 one-design monohulls that, following an initial draw, will be rotated on a daily base among the teams. The event format is a Round Robin, followed by semi-finals and final.

The Luna Rossa team consists of Francesco Bruni (helmsman), Adam Minoprio (tactician), Xabier Fernandez (mainsail trimmer), Simeon Tienpont (pitman), Pierluigi de Felice (trimmer), Max Sirena (bowman).

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Alpari World Match Racing Tour Announces 2014 Championship Skippers

Posted on 11 March 2014 by Valencia Sailing

[Source: Alpari World Match Racing Tour] The Alpari World Match Racing Tour has today announced the eight Tour Card skippers for the 2014 World Championship series. Defending Tour Champion Taylor Canfield (ISV) leads the line up of the world’s top match racers alongside four-time Tour Champion Ian Williams (GBR), Keith Swinton (AUS), Bjorn Hansen (SWE), Mathieu Richard (FRA) and Phil Robertson (NZL).

Joining the race for the 2014 title is also one of the challenging teams for the 35th America’s Cup, Luna Rossa (ITA).

Francesco Bruni will represent Prada CEO Patrizio Bertelli’s long term America’s Cup challenger Luna Rossa. Bruni, a former Laser, 49er and Star class Olympic sailor, was tactician aboard the Italian team’s AC72 catamaran in San Francisco during the 34th America’s Cup last year. He has now stepped into the driving seat for their match race training. Bruni competed at the Argo Group Gold Cup in Bermuda in 2013, when he triumphed over Sir Ben Ainslie in the final.

“The participation in the Alpari World Match Racing Tour is part of team Luna Rossa’s preparation program for the 35th America’s Cup,” confirms Bruni. “The Tour is one of the most selective competitions at international level and is the best field to measure ourselves in a real race.”

Completing the Tour Card skipper line up for 2014 is Australian David Gilmour, following in the footsteps of his famous father, Peter Gilmour, four-time ISAF Match Racing World Champion and America’s Cup veteran.

The 22yr old match racer is no stranger to the Alpari World Match Racing Tour after competing at the Monsoon Cup in 2012 and 2013, and the Korea Match Cup 2013. He was also winner of the ISAF Nations Cup 2013 and is a two-time winner of the Warren Jones International Youth Regatta in Perth.

“I am really proud to be racing on the 2014 Tour as a first time card holder,” commented Gilmour. “It has been a major goal of ours to win the Alpari World Match Racing Tour and it’s a tough field this year, but I believe I have the right team with me that can really challenge for the world title.”

Gilmour has recently joined Team Australia representing the Challenger of Record for the 35th America’s Cup. He will be dividing his time during 2014 between competing on the Alpari World Match Racing Tour and training with Team Australia.

All eight Tour Card Skippers are automatically guaranteed a berth at the six Tour Championship events for 2014. At least an additional four skippers are selected by each event to make up the final team tally.

But the man to beat in 2014 will be defending champion, US Virgin Islander Taylor Canfield. His USone Sailing Team won the Chicago Match Cup in 2013 and a third place at the Monsoon Cup was enough to secure the 2013 Alpari World Match Racing Tour overall and the World Championship title.

“USone is extremely happy with our 2013 performance as a first time Alpari Tour card holder. We have a special and talented team, which will remain the same for 2014. However, with new teams and new events, it’s a clean slate and the standards are high. We will be competing with the same enthusiasm and drive to retain our title.”

Wanting to claim Canfield’s title more than anyone this season will be British match racing legend Ian Williams. The GAC Pindar skipper has won the Alpari World Match Racing Tour four times (2007-8 and 2011-12). Victory this year would see Williams better Australian Peter Gilmour’s record and enter the record books as the person to have the most Match Racing World Championships in the history of the sport.

Williams comments: “Team GAC Pindar are very much looking forward to the 2014 Alpari World Match Racing Tour season. It is great to see new Events coming onto the Tour and I am especially looking forward to going back to Poland for the first time since we won the Sopot Match Race in 2005.”

A familiar foe of Williams, who has been awarded a Tour Card this season, is France’s Mathieu Richard, back for an impressive 11th year on the Tour. Richard won Korea Match Cup last year, when his GEFCO Match Racing Team concluded the season seventh overall.

For Sweden’s Bjorn Hansen’s this will be his eighth year on the Tour. His eWork Sailing Team finished just off the podium in fourth place last year, following their second place in 2012.

Back for his seventh consecutive year competing at Alpari World Match Racing Tour events, and his third year as Tour Card Skipper, is Australian Keith Swinton and his Black Swan Racing team. Swinton finished sixth on the Tour last year, down two places from their 2012 position – their best to date.

Phil Robertson will be once again representing New Zealand with his Waka Racing Team. This will be his sixth year on the Tour having finished third last year and in 2012.

As AWMRT Executive Director James Pleasance commented “We have a fantastic line up on the Tour this year, testament to the level of professionalism the World Championship has now reached. We are also delighted to welcome Luna Rossa to the 2014 Tour as part of their training for the 35th America’s Cup. While the America’s Cup has moved to foiling catamarans, there is no better place for the teams to hone their match racing skills than the Alpari World Match Racing Tour.”

Alpari World Match Racing Tour – 2014 Tour Card Holders
Taylor Canfield (ISV) USone Sailing Team
Ian Williams (GBR) GAC Pindar
Keith Swinton (AUS) Black Swan Racing
Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Hansen Sailing Team
Mathieu Richard (FRA) LunaJets
Phil Robertson (NZL) Waka Racing
Francesco Bruni (ITA) Luna Rossa
David Gilmour (AUS) Team Gilmour

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Prada announces €50-million sponsorship of Luna Rossa

Posted on 28 February 2014 by Valencia Sailing

[Source: Luna Rossa] The Board of Directors of PRADA S.p.A. is pleased to announce that on 27 February 2014 the Company, entered into a sponsorship agreement with Luna Rossa Challenge S.r.l. for the participation of Luna Rossa sailing team in the XXXV edition of the America’s Cup.

Sponsorship Contribution to be paid by the Company, Euro 50 million to be paid in installments over the period from February 2014 to October 2017

The Sponsorship Contribution has been determined on the basis of the budget for the preparation and participation of the Luna Rossa sailing team in all the prestigious international regattas, both preliminary and final races, of the Competition, including moving its operations to various destinations in which the races are held.

Sponsorship benefits to the Company: In consideration of the Sponsorship Contribution, the Company and, in general, the Group shall have the right to
- (i) benefit from the title of “Main Sponsor” of Luna Rossa sailing team during the Competition,
- (ii) promote Prada’s name and trademark jointly with Luna Rossa’s name and trademark,
- (iii) exhibit the PRADA trademark for advertising purpose within specified events including any international regattas and sporting activities that take place in the United States, Asia and Europe during the term of the Sponsorship Agreement and, in particular, the preliminary and final races of the Competition,
- (iv) exhibit the PRADA trademark on, among other things, (a) the hull, boom, drifts and sails of Luna Rossa yachts, (b) the clothing of the Luna Rossa crew, and (c) the backdrop and any communication support, for advertising purposes. The Company and, in general, the Group shall also have the right to use images of the Luna Rossa yachts and its crew for advertising purposes.

Annual Caps for the continuing connected transaction

The maximum amount of Sponsorship Contribution to be paid to Luna Rossa Challenge for each of the years ending 31 January 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 (the “Annual Caps”) is as follows:

Annual Cap for the year ending 31.01.2015 Annual Cap for the year ending 31.01.2016 Annual Cap for the year ending 31.01.2017 Annual Cap for the year ending 31.01.2018
Sponsorship Agreement €25 million €24 million €9 million €4.5 million

Each of the Annual Caps set out above was determined after taking into consideration the budget for the preparation and participation of the Luna Rossa sailing team in all of the prestigious international regattas, both preliminary and final races, of the Competition, including moving its operations to various destinations in which the races are held. The proposed Annual Caps have also taken into account the possibility of any advance payments to Luna Rossa Challenge which may need to be made depending on the timing of the actual races, hence why the aggregate of the annual caps equals Euro 62.5 million. However, the total amount of Sponsorship Contribution over the Term will not exceed Euro 50 million.

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Gazprom set to enter the Extreme Sailing Series, led by Paul Campbell-James

Posted on 23 January 2014 by Valencia Sailing

If one is to believe our well-informed sources from Australia, the Extreme Sailing Series is set to become in 2014 the undisputed, premiere sailing circuit that will gather the who-is-who of the sport in the world. Two weeks ago, organizers unveiled a lineup of nine teams that included two of the world’s most renowned skippers, Sir Ben Ainslie and Franck Cammas. Then, two days ago, Emirates Team New Zealand was confirmed as the tenth team. America’s Cup veteran Dean Barker and young gun Peter Burling will alternate at the helm of the kiwi Extreme 40.

When we thought that the circuit had reached its peak, our well-informed sources from Australia surprised us with the news that the 11th team that will complete this year’s lineup will be no other than a strong Russian entry, funded by energy giant Gazprom and skippered by two-time winner of the circuit, Great Britain’s Paul Campbell-James.

Campbell-James first won the Extreme Sailing Series in 2010, skippering the Omani boat The Wave, Muscat and in 2011 was the helm of the victorious Luna Rossa, skippered by Max Sirena. It is obvious that the Russian team will have the credentials to be a strong competitor and will not be there simply to make the numbers.

Winners of the Extreme Sailing Series since its inception in 2007
Team / Skipper
2013 The Wave, Muscat / Leigh McMillan
2012 The Wave, Muscat / Leigh McMillan
2011 Luna Rossa / Max Sirena
2010 The Wave, Muscat / Paul Campbell-James
2009 Oman Sail Masirah / Pete Cumming
2008 Alinghi / Ed Baird
2007 Basilica / Rob Greenhalgh

In what regards the composition of the crew we will have to wait for another day as our information isn’t confirmed with the possible exception of mainsheet trimmer Alister Richardson who has always been a core member of Campbell-James’ crew and was with him both on The Wave and Luna Rossa. We understand there will be two Russian sailors onboard, leaving one spot for another British sailor from Luna Rossa. That could very well be Nick Hutton who was also with Campbell-James in 2010 on The Wave as well as Luna Rossa’s America’s Cup campaign in San Francisco.

If you still had the slightest doubt about what circuit will steal the spotlight this year in the sport of sailing, we are sure the confirmation of the Russian entry will dissipate it!

The 2010 Extreme Sailing Series winners, The Wave Muscat. From left, Paul Campbell-James, Alister Richardson, Nasser al Mashari and Nick Cutton. As of 2012, the Extreme 40′s have a fifth crew. Photo copyright Lloyd images

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Luna Rossa officialises the opening of its new base at Cagliari

Posted on 16 January 2014 by Valencia Sailing

[Source: Luna Rossa Challenge] Luna Rossa Challenge moves to Cagliari where the team will install its new base in view of the 35th America’s Cup, scheduled to take place in the Summer of 2017.

The work to set up the base will start in the coming weeks and it is expected that it could be operating as early as March. From May onwards the sailing team will start training on the water.

Patrizio Bertelli, President of Luna Rossa Challenge, declared:

“We chose Cagliari because the weather conditions in this bay are ideal for training with catamarans. The city of Cagliari also offers excellent logistic solutions and has given us a particularly warm welcome. We are very pleased, after several years abroad, to have the team base back in Italy again.”

The President of the Regione Sardegna, Ugo Cappellacci, said:

“With Luna Rossa, Sardinia is projected on the international stage. With its sea, framed by a city, this area of the island is an ideal place for sailing, not only from a technical point of view but also for its striking beauty.”

Molo Sabaudo, the home of Luna Rossa’s base for the 35th America’s Cup

The Mayor of Cagliari, Massimo Zedda, said:

“We are honoured by Luna Rossa’s choice. I am sure that Cagliari and its citizens will give the team the welcome it deserves: we already started to breathe the enthusiasm when the first rumours spread regarding the possible arrival of Luna Rossa; we are strongly aware of the significant return that Cagliari will receive, in terms of image, for its beautiful seashore and for all that the city can offer. Our warmest welcome to all of the Luna Rossa team.”

The President of the Port Authority, Piergiorgio Massidda, declared:

“The announcement of Patrizio Bertelli to choose Cagliari as base for the team Luna Rossa honours us and repays us for the work conducted in recent years to improve the conditions of our city and to make it a reference for international sailing. This is a unique opportunity, not only for the city but for the whole area which will be recognized at an international level. I am pleased therefore to take this opportunity to welcome the whole team Luna Rossa.”

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Luna Rossa set to establish America’s Cup base in Cagliari

Posted on 13 November 2013 by Valencia Sailing

Less than two months have passed since Oracle Team USA beat Emirates Team New Zealand on San Francisco bay and successfully retained the oldest sports trophy in the world. With the exception of the fact that Hamilton Island Yacht Club is the Challenger of Record, there is very little, if any, information regarding the next edition of the America’s Cup.

We still don’t know, at least officially, the basic set of rules that will govern the event, it is still unknown what type of boat will be used, we don’t even know for sure that the city of San Francisco will once again play host to the event! As per the official press release, the dates, type of boat, format and rules will be negotiated by the Challenger of Record and the Defender while the latter will choose the venue. All these details will be publicly announced “early” next year.

However, this lack of details doesn’t seem to slow down Patrizio Bertelli’s organizational plans to challenge once again. Not only that, according to an official document released, attached here below, by the Port Authority of Cagliari last Thursday, November 7th, Luna Rossa has requested from the port an area of approximately 12,100 square meters on Sabaudo pier (Molo Sabaudo) in order to establish an operational base in view of its preparation for the 35th America’s Cup. They say that time is the most precious commodity in the America’s Cup and Bertelli knows it better than anyone else. Funding not being an issue for Luna Rossa, the earlier the campaign starts the more chances it has for a competitive performance.

Official announcement of Luna Rossa’s request for space in the Port of Cagliari

According to the document, the Port Authority will lease that space for a period of two years, extended by an additional one if the team requests so. Although it is practically obvious the next America’s Cup can’t be held in 2015, it is still unclear whether the year chosen will be 2016 or 2017. According to reports in the Italian media, Luna Rossa would move there next February.

It was reported back in September that Patrizio Bertelli and Max Sirena were scouting for a base and had a shortlist of three cities, Trapani, Valencia and Cagliari. Apparently, the model Team New Zealand used from 2011 to 2013 set an example to follow. It doesn’t make sense moving to San Francisco, if that turns out to be the venue again, years earlier. You set up a base in your home country, you carry out your research and development there, keeping it away from privy eyes as much as possible, and you train. Then, the year of the Cup, the entire team moves to the venue six months before the Challenger Selection Series.

In the 34th America’s Cup, Patrizio Bertelli challenged through the Circolo della Vela Sicilia, a yacht club based in Palermo. I don’t know whether the move to Cagliari is of any significance in that aspect since Trapani is just 100km west of Palermo. However, there could be hundreds of reasons why Bertelli and Sirena finally opted for Cagliari. In any case, it is clear that the first photos of the future America’s Cup boat flying the Italian flag will be in Cagliari, some time in 2015. We look forward to seeing them!

Luna Rossa training on their AC72 boat in San Francisco. Photo copyright Carlo Borlenghi / Luna Rossa

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Francesco Bruni takes Ben Ainslie 3-2 to win Argo Group Gold Cup

Posted on 14 October 2013 by Valencia Sailing

[Source: Argo Group Gold Cup] It was a battle of America’s Cup tacticians Sunday in Bermuda. In one of the most exciting finals in Argo Group Gold Cup history, Francesco Bruni (ITA) Luna Rossa put a stop to the comeback kid, Sir Ben Ainslie (GBR) BART/Argo Group. Bruni won the first two races and then Ainslie took two and looked like he was going to add a Gold Cup comeback to his America’s Cup record.

Bruini would have nothing of that and sailed flawlessly in the final race to win the King Edward VII Gold Cup and US$50,000 of the $100,000 prize purse.

Bruni had great pace at the start of the final race. He was on starboard, to weather of Ainslie and on the line right on time. In the Northeasterly breeze, he took Ainslie all the way up to the wall at the Fairmont Hamilton Princess Hotel gaining separation on the way.

When they tacked for the obstruction, Bruni was clearly ahead and then gained on the long port tack to the weather mark. Ainslie couldn’t pull another catch up out of his trick bag

Bruni and his crew Pierluigi de Felice, Xabi Fernandez and Nick Hutton were jubilant. This was the first time an Italian has ever won the King Edward VII Gold Cup. It was a historic victory for Bruni who comes from Palermo, Sicily and had lost only one race in reaching the finals. Ainslie had lost only two, so the cream had really risen to the top.

Both Bruni and Ainslie had come through the Semi Finals Sunday morning with perfect 3-0 records. Ainslie defeated Adam Minoprio (NZL) Team Alpari FX. Bruni handled defending champion Taylor Canfield (ISV) USone. Canfield went on to beat Minoprio in the Petite finals and take 3rd place and putting Minoprio into 4th.

Francesco Bruni wins the Argo Group Gold Cup. Hamilton, 13 Oct 2013. Photo copyright OnEdition / Alpari World Match Racing Tour

Prize Winners
Francesco Bruni $50,000
Sir Ben Ainslie $20,000
Taylor Canfield $10,000
Adam Minoprio $ 7,000
Bjorn Hanson $ 5500
Ian Williams $ 4,000
Keith Swinton $ 2,500
Phil Robertson $ 1,000

Ian Williams won the Wedgewood trophy and Nicoli Sehestead won the Jordy Walker Trophy as the most improved sailor in Match Race Association or Tour events.

Quotes of the Day:

Francesco Bruni: “I am very happy about our win and I didn’t really think we would be here at the start of it all. We went very well throughout the regatta – we did not come up through a repechage or other ways. We just sailed well almost the entire race. Hamilton harbor is a very tricky race course and everyone makes mistakes including us. We sailed very well all week.

“To win every start against Sir Ben Ainslie in the finals is pretty big. We were quite sure we could separate it and the plan in our mind worked beautifully. Every cross, we were ahead. After we were 2-2 we are very happy we didn’t let it slip away from our hands. We sailed Sir Ben to the wall and he asked for room to tack. It was a huge setback for Ben because when he tacked around we just had him and powered ahead.

“It has been a really great return to the world tour. And, I need to thank Luna Rossa for bringing us here. It has been a great reward for all of us after a lot of hard work.

Sir Ben Ainslie: “It was a great final. Ultimately we were beaten by a better team. They started their races better and they became the team that we could not beat today. We are here to honor the memory of our friend Andrew “Bart” Simpson and we have got a lot of support from everyone here for our Foundation. We sailed well today and we are glad we got the band back together in honor of Bart who was such an ambassador to the sport.”

Iain Percy: “This has been a very memorable regatta. We have been through something very hard and it has been a tough six months. Being in Bermuda has helped us with this and we are grateful to all of the goodwill of everyone here.”

Adam Minoprio: “It is great to be sitting here in the final four. It was a disappointing end to the regatta for us but we have sailed hard throughout this event. This is our sixth time at the Gold Cup so we are just very honored to be here.”

Taylor Canfield: “I can’t deny that it was tough for us not making the finals as we were sailing well enough. We are happy to get 3rd and we learned we are still leading the tour. We were disappointed by the call in the final race against Francesco Bruni by the umpire but we also made small errors that hurt us. Whether you make it through or not it is still an amazing event. I feel privileged to be around an incredible group of sailors. This harbor does get the best of you sometime and it truly did. We are on to the Monsoon Cup next and we actually leading the tour so we are really looking forward to that.”

Francesco Bruni wins the Argo Group Gold Cup. Hamilton, 13 Oct 2013. Photo copyright OnEdition / Alpari World Match Racing Tour

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Carlo Borlenghi’s spectacular photos from Sunday’s America’s Cup action

Posted on 16 September 2013 by Valencia Sailing

Update: The person getting whipped by the waters of San Francisco bay is Andrew Henderson, Rig Team Manager. He was inspecting a fairing between races on Sunday.

The world’s best sailing photographer is in San Francisco, capturing the excitement that, undeniably, two equally-matched AC72′s can offer. His photos from Sunday’s action were truly spectacular. Although Luna Rossa isn’t taking part in the 34th America’s Cup any longer, Carlo is most probably in San Francisco, waiting for Emirates Team New Zealand to win and then photograph the Protocol signature between Grant Dalton and Patrizio Bertelli:

Races 9 & 10 of the 34th America’s Cup Match. San Francisco, 15 September 2013. Photo copyright Luna Rossa / Carlo Borlenghi

Races 9 & 10 of the 34th America’s Cup Match. San Francisco, 15 September 2013. Photo copyright Luna Rossa / Carlo Borlenghi

Races 9 & 10 of the 34th America’s Cup Match. San Francisco, 15 September 2013. Photo copyright Luna Rossa / Carlo Borlenghi

Races 9 & 10 of the 34th America’s Cup Match. San Francisco, 15 September 2013. Photo copyright Luna Rossa / Carlo Borlenghi

Races 9 & 10 of the 34th America’s Cup Match. San Francisco, 15 September 2013. Photo copyright Luna Rossa / Carlo Borlenghi

Races 9 & 10 of the 34th America’s Cup Match. San Francisco, 15 September 2013. Photo copyright Luna Rossa / Carlo Borlenghi

Races 9 & 10 of the 34th America’s Cup Match. San Francisco, 15 September 2013. Photo copyright Luna Rossa / Carlo Borlenghi

Races 9 & 10 of the 34th America’s Cup Match. San Francisco, 15 September 2013. Photo copyright Luna Rossa / Carlo Borlenghi

Races 9 & 10 of the 34th America’s Cup Match. San Francisco, 15 September 2013. Photo copyright Luna Rossa / Carlo Borlenghi

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