LV Trophy in Hong Kong canned

January event in Hong Kong harbour now not taking place

Friday August 6th 2010, Author: Betty Chan, Location: Hong Kong

The World Sailing Teams Association, Louis Vuitton and the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club have announced that preparations for the proposed “Louis Vuitton Trophy Hong Kong” will no longer continue.

The Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club has been instrumental in the promotion and organisation of this unique event and regrets that it has been cancelled.

The world-class sailing event involving America’s Cup Class boats and racing teams was scheduled to be held on Victoria Harbour in January 2011. However, it has become clear that many of the teams involved will now be focusing their resources on their preparations for the next America’s Cup. A draft Protocol, which defines the terms for the 34th America’s Cup, was released in recent weeks and includes between five and seven events in each of 2011 an 2012. This has made the Louis Vuitton Trophy Hong Kong schedule unfeasible to maintain for some of the competing teams.

The Louis Vuitton Trophy Hong Kong had been supported by the Hong Kong Government with an offer of funding from the Mega Event Fund and use of the new Pier 10 site in Central as a Race Village which was to be open to the public, free of charge. With the event in the planning stage only, no Mega Event Funding has been accessed and no work has been undertaken at Pier 10.

The Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, as on-water co-ordinator and one of the three organisers of the event, remains optimistic that other international sailing events will be staged in Hong Kong in the future.

"The Louis Vuitton Trophy had the potential to place Hong Kong on the map as a host city for major world class sailing events. The Club appreciates the tremendous level of Government support we have received in this attempt to bring the Louis Vuitton Trophy to Hong Kong. We remain confident that sailing regatta organisers will continue to consider the city and its harbour as a prospective venue in the future," said Warwick Downes, Chairman of the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club’s organising committee.

The America’s Cup winner, BMW ORACLE Racing, has indicated to the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club an interest in staging an America’s Cup Championship event in Asia and will look at Hong Kong as a potential venue in that context.

"Should this happen, the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club remains happy to assist." Warwick Downes added.

Chairman and CEO of Louis Vuitton, Yves Carcelle, who worked behind the scenes to provide support for the event said: "Hong Kong, with its wonderful harbour and city skyline, would have made a superb venue for the Louis Vuitton Trophy and I hope that, in the near future, we can support the staging of an event of this caliber here."

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