'It's exciting to be here in Rome, one of the oldest cities in the world, with the America's Cup, the oldest sporting trophy in the world. Italy is among the strongest examples of what we had in mind in bringing the America's Cup to Europe,' said Michel BONNEFOUS, the CEO of the America's Cup organizers. 'Italy has had a good presence in the modern era of the Cup, with challenges dating back to 1983.'
'But this year, with three Italian teams, the excitement about the America's Cup in Italy is unprecedented. And now, by bringing meaningful America's Cup racing to Trapani, in Sicily, Italian fans can see for themselves why the America's Cup is so exciting and has such a strong appeal. I'm very excited about the racing in Trapani, and I know that Trapani Louis Vuitton Acts are going to be a tremendous success.'
Italian television coverage of the 32nd America's Cup is very impressive as well, with the Telecom Italia Media Group acquiring the rights to broadcast the 32nd America's Cup on La7. In total, La7 is scheduled to show about 240 hours of live and recorded action dedicated to the America's Cup.
With the stunning Egadi Islands as a backdrop in the distance, the racing in Trapani will conclude the 2005 racing season for the America's Cup, and following the Trapani Louis Vuitton Act 9, the season champion will be crowned, the title going to the team which has performed best across the events in Valencia, Spain, Malmö-Skåne, Sweden and Trapani this summer.
BONNEFOUS was joined by representatives from the three Italian teams, including Lorenzo RIZZARDI Head of the +39 Challenge, Luna Rossa's Paolo MARTINONI, and skipper Vasco VASCOTTO (ITA) from the Mascalzone Latino - Capitalia Team. Leading Italian politicians involved in the project were also among the guests. Senator D'ALI, from Sicily, said hosting America's Cup racing in Trapani was very important to the region.
The 2005 America's Cup season opens with the Valencia Louis Vuitton Acts 4 & 5. Racing begins on the 16 June in the host city of the 32nd America's Cup.