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26 April 2005, 03:04 pm
Racing Season Revs Up In May
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America's Cup 2007
Valencia, Spain

Three nations, three ISAF Grade 1 regattas and two crews adds up to a busy May programme for the USA's entry to the 32nd America's Cup, BMW ORACLE Racing.
The first major competition of the 2005 America's Cup season is fast approaching. On 16 June, the first starting gun for the Valencia Louis Vuitton Act 4 will sound. Since March, BMW ORACLE Racing has been testing with it's two ACC yachts in Valencia, but at the same time the team was racing to gain an edge for the Acts of the 2005 season.

In May, the team launches into race mode with an extensive three-regatta programme: the ISAF Grade 1 Toscana Elba Cup in Porto Azzuro, Italy from 1-8 May; the ISAF Grade 1 Match Race Germany in Langenargen from 11-16 May and; the ISAF Grade 1 ACI Cup in Split, Croatia from 22-28 May.

As ISAF Grade 1 events it comes as no surprise that the entry lists for these events look like an America's Cup and ISAF World Match Race Rankings 'Who's Who'.

BMW ORACLE Racing will contest the May events with two different crews. In the Elba event, helmsman Gavin BRADY (NZL) and the crew Dirk DE RIDDER (NED), Sean CLARKSON (AUS), Robbie NAISMITH (NZL) and Brad WEBB (NZL) will face an all-star fleet of competitors.

'For me, the Toscana Elba Cup represents the first regatta of the year,' said BRADY. 'The event provides us with a great opportunity to compete against some of the best match racers in the world. This will continue to push us to a higher level. With six Louis Vuitton Acts in 2005, we are keen to race every chance we can.'

At Langenargen, located at Lake Constance, and Split, the BMW ORACLE Racing colours will be represented by helmsman Bertrand PACÉ (FRA) and the crew WEBB, DE RIDDER, Eric DOYLE (USA) and Zach HURST (NZL). The French helmsman has to defend top positions in both events: last year, PACÉ won in Croatia and finished second in Germany.

'Quite obviously, I'd love to repeat these successes,' said the BMW ORACLE Racing helmsman. 'But it will be just as crucial to continue to improve our team work and our race tactics, at these extremely competitive regattas.' (As Amended By ISAF). Image, BMW ORACE Racing preparing in Valencia:©
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