The International America's Cup Class of San Francisco (IACCSF), have announced that its annual Regatta Series has been officially named, The Challenge Series.
The America's Cup Class yachts competing in the regattas will be described as The San Francisco Cup Class.
The regatta series, launched in San Francisco during the 2002 summer racing season, was previously and informally referred to as IACC SF. Following the success of the 2002 IACC events raced on San Francisco Bay, event founders John Sweeney and Tina Kleinjan confirmed that the series would become an ongoing annual event.
"Over and above the success of our informal series in 2002, the desire was apparent from the challenger teams who participated in the 2002-2003 Louis Vuitton and America's Cup Regattas in New Zealand to keep the racing momentum going with the current class of America's Cup yachts,"
stated John Sweeney. "The Challenge Series held annually on San Francisco Bay will provide that opportunity."
In the past, the very expensive America's Cup yachts have been used for testing and then simply discarded once The America's Cup events have finished. John Sweeney and Tina Kleinjan have built a business rebuilding older International America's Cup Class yachts and providing the perfect racing environment for them on San Francisco Bay.
With up to ten teams participating in the 2003 season, including recent America's Cup winner Team Alinghi and Larry Ellison's Oracle BMW Racing, corporate sponsors such as Wells Fargo see The Challenge Series as an ideal marketing tool. With the regatta series officially launched, the stage is set for the most impressive sailing competition ever seen on San Francisco Bay.
Yachts currently scheduled to race this season include Stars and Stripes, New Zealand Challenge, Il Moro di Venezia, NZL-20, Le Defi Areva, and K-Yachting Challenge.
The complete 2003 IACCSF racing schedule is as follows: The Sausalito Cup - June 20-22, The Il Moro Trophy - July 25-27, The Golden Gate Cup - Sept. 6-14, and The 2003 IACC Worlds on Oct. 11-19.