The world's top sailors in Cascais

The most hard fought and closely matched circuit featuring the cutting edge TP52 and GP42 Series will compete between the 11th and the 16th of May, for the Portugal Trophy at the first Audi MedCup Circuit of 2010.

After three very successful years in the Algarve, the Portuguese stage of the Audi MedCup Circuit visits Cascais.

The only Audi MedCup event on the waters of the Atlantic will take place at a world class sailing venue, which has hosted many World and European Championships including the 2007 ISAF Sailing World Championships

The Portugal Trophy will be the first of the five events which comprise the Audi MedCup Circuit this season.  As the curtain raiser for  for the 2010 season, Cascais will be the first venue to feature the modified TP52, which has undergone key changes which were designed to enhance the performance of this already exciting, demanding class.
Emirates Team New Zealand (TP52) and Islas Canarias Puerto Calero ( GP42), the Audi MedCup 2009 winners, will try to carry on their winning momentum into the new season, starting in Cascais:

Nacho Postigo (ESP) Audi MedCup Circuit director commented: "We are seeing a rise in the level of the competition and the quality this year, particularly due to the three new America's Cup entries.  Cascais is getting the sailors nervous, many know the race area from previous events and realise that they will need to very agile to control the boat.  The boats are more powerful with the modifications that have been introduced since last year.  The changes have made the boats faster and that is what you have to control with one less crew member. It is guaranteed to be quite a spectacle and I encourage all the people in the region of Lisbon to come and enjoy all this in Cascais."

"Last year's fleet was difficult to beat. The teams improved race by race. In 2010, three new teams, TeamORIGIN, ALL4ONE and Luna Rossa,will make things even more difficult for us. We didn't have much time to train on our modified NZL380 and we are looking forward to coming to Cascais, so that we can test our performance level with the rest of the fleet", says Grant Dalton, CEO of Emirates Team New Zealand.

Ten TP52 and five GP42 have registered for the Portugal Trophy, among them a total of two America's Cup crews new to the Audi MedCup Circuit:Britain's TeamORIGIN and Italy's Luna Rossa, which has Brasilians Torben Grael and Robert Scheidt on board, two of the world's most important sailors, who have a very good knowledge of the race area of Cascais.

The host nation Portugal will be represented by Bigamist 7, of Pedro Mendonça. The Portuguese TP52 was the circuit's revelation in 2009, after eight race wins and climbing on to the podium in the last event, Cartagena.

In the Audi MedCup 2010, after being modified, she is expected to improve last year's performance and be fighting for the final success.

Beyond the cut and thrust of the action on the water, the Portugal Trophy has been consistently acclaimed for the organization, infrastructure and glamour ashore. Such values are keynote to the Lagos Sports brand, the event organizer together with the Clube Naval of Cascais, the Marina of Cascais, and World Sailing Management with the support of Turismo de Portugal and Turismo Estoril/C‚mara Municipal of Cascais.

The Portuguese event of the Audi MedCup 2010 starts competition on the Tuesday 11th of May and runs until the Sunday the 16th. Each day up to three races will be held, as well as a spectacular coastal race scheduled for Saturday, the 15th: the fleet starts from Cascais heading to Cabo da Roca towards Cabo Espichel, and heads back to Lisbon where it turns at Ponte 25 of Abril to reach the finish off Cascais.

The competition will be based in the Marina of Cascais and includes a Race Village, a Press Room, the Race Office of Clube Nacional of Cascais and an area in the Bay of Cascais which will allow visitors a live and exciting experience of the event, with a big screen which will relay racing with live images enhanced by the virtual tracking system, as well as leisure activities, a merchandising area and food and beverage options.