The WSTA (World Sailing Team Association) groups together the participants in previous Louis Vuitton Cup regattas (K-Challenge (France), BMW Oracle Racing (USA), Emirates Team New Zealand, Mascalzone Latino (Italy)) and welcomes newcomers such as Team Artemis (Sweden), Team Synergy (Russia), Joe Fly Italia (Italy) and Team French Spirit (France). Other teams will join the association in the coming weeks.
Entitled the Louis Vuitton World Series, these regattas are a first in the world of sailing and follow on from the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series organised in Auckland, New Zealand, last February. The global success of this exceptional competition persuaded all the partners in this adventure to create a dynamic and ambitious new race programme based on the same concept and format.
Ten teams will be invited to confront each other in successive duels over a fortnight on two pairs of identical boats chosen by lot. The racing boats were sailed in the 2007 LV Cup. This concept, which demonstrates the desire to return to the original spirit of "match racing", provides an exhilarating show and is easy for spectators to understand.
The WSTA and Louis Vuitton plan to organise several regattas a year. Many cities of which Nice, Hong Kong, Auckland, New York and several other European venues have shown their interest.
K-Challenge's Stephane Kandler commented: "We are proud to have taken part to the creation of the Louis Vuitton World Series, which follow on the success of the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series. We have worked a lot with the WSTA members and Louis Vuitton to launch an exceptional racing events programme. More details to come about the first event to be organised in 2009 and K-Challenge´s participation next Tuesday."
Full details of this are to be announced on Tuesday next week at a press conference in Paris.