Alinghi, the Defender of the 33rd America’s Cup, held a press conference today in Le Bouveret, Switzerland, to present Alinghi 5, the Swiss team’s giant catamaran.
The boat was held ashore for the day as the weather turned foul on Lake Geneva, but the first trials held earlier this week were extremely successful: “Being able to sail Alinghi 5 on the Lake for the very first time and seeing it perform so well on its first day out is a real tribute to the team; first and foremost the designers – who have drawn from the multihull heritage and technology here in Switzerland as well as their own depth – but also the boat builders and the sailors who are now completely focused on making the boat go as fast as possible. Our first day out, flying a hull was, if not the best, certainly one of the best days of my life,” said team president, Ernesto Bertarelli.
Sailing and testing will continue apace over the coming days culminating in a public celebration on Lake Geneva on 1 August which will include a team presentation before a parade of sail from Lausanne to the defender’s club, Société Nautique de Genève. The boat will then be prepared for the heli-lift to Genoa, Italy, where training will continue.
“This project has been, and continues to be, about putting people in a position where they can socially and intellectually experience things that are unique. It’s not about who is winning in court; it’s about which is going to be the fastest boat on the water with the strongest team and the best technology. That is why we are here and we are proud of it,” concluded Bertarelli.
Ernesto Bertarelli was flanked by Grant Simmer, design team coordinator; Murray Jones, member of the sailing team who has been running the early trials and Patrick Aebischer, president of EPFL, Alinghi’s scientific advisor.
To watch the press conference on our webcast, please click here: http://www.qik.com/alinghi