lvmh cup 10 2016

35th Louis Vuitton America’s Cup

  • Acte I à Toulon


Toulon bay enjoyed a spectacular three-day regatta with the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series (LVACWS). It was the first time France had hosted a heat of this type in the lead-up to the legendary America's Cup.


The LVACWS regattas are preparatory heats for the 35th America’s Cup, due to be hosted by Bermuda in 2017. The World Series began in 2015; after races in Muscat (Oman), New York, Chicago and Portsmouth (UK), Toulon was the port for the only French stage of the 2016 circuit. It was a rare opportunity to admire the catamarans of the American trophy holders Oracle Team USA and its challengers Emirates Team New Zealand, Land Rover BAR, Artemis Racing, SoftBank Japas and Groupama Team France. A battle of titans! The French boat, crewed by Franck Cammas (skipper), Michel Desjoyeaux and Olivier de Kersauson, was identical to its competitors', because all the boats in this race are AC45 high-performance wing-sailed catamarans.


Aboard the AC45
It sounds like the name of a plane – and it is, almost! This 45ft catamaran designed by Oracle Racing features 133m2 of sail close-hauled and 210m2 downwind. It is a scale model, so to speak, of the future AC72s that will be competing in the Cup. Unusual in design and very physical, it is truly spectacular when it rises out of the water on its hydrofoils. Thanks to the giant screens on Mourillon beach, spectators were able to fully appreciate the sensation of speed and lightness. And understand why top-level yachtsmen with the strength and agility of athletes vie with each other for the privilege of sailing an AC45. And why such an enthusiastic crowd had gathered to watch.


Toulon, yachting Mecca

 Having been a port of call on the Tall Ships Races of 2007 and 2013 and having hosted a World Series regatta on 9-11 September this year, Toulon can be proud that its anchorage, one of the very best, is known to yachtsmen the world over.