Louis Vuitton America's Cup
Team Esquire Middle East spent the weekend in Muscat, Oman, watching the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series. After two days of racing, the British Land Rover BAR team came out on top, ahead of the final race in Bermuda in June next year where Oracle Team USA will defend its title. Louis Vuitton, the official title partner of the 35th America’s Cup, has three decades of shared history with the race and this year has created an impressive bespoke travel case for the America’s Cup to be both transported and presented to the winning team. In case you have no idea what we’re talking about, here’s everything you need to know about the world’s oldest international sporting event.
The first Louis Vuitton America’s Cup
Louis Vuitton first teamed up with the America’s Cup in 1983 when the French heritage brand proposed a qualifying series to challenge for the America’s Cup and become a trophy event in its own right. This run up to the first Louis Vuitton Cup saw The New York Yacht club try to defend its winning straight of 132 years, since its first victory off the Isle of Wight in 1851. However, millionaire Alan Bond was determined to repatriate the America’s Cup to Australia’s Royal Perth Yacht Club and attached a winged keel, designed by Ben Lexcen, to the hull of his 12 metre yacht, Australia II. This innovation led the Australia II to win the first Louis Vuitton Cup before going on to win – by the slimmest of margins – the America’s Cup.
A brief history of the America’s Cup
In 1851, in Cowes, on the Isle of Wight, the Royal Yacht Squadron offered a Dhs600 prize and a handsome new cup to the winner of an 85km race around the island. The race was won by America, a sleek, state-of-the-art schooner constructed by a syndicate gathered from the New York Yacht Club. The cup was named in honour of its first winner, a code for future events laid down – and thus began what is now the oldest international sporting competition on earth.
“All of us have in our veins the exact same percentage of salt in our blood that exists in the ocean, and, therefore, we have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears. We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch it, we are going back from whence we came.” US President John F. Kennedy Speech at The America’s Cup dinner, 1962
The Louis Vuitton America’s Cup Trophy Case
Louis Vuitton has equipped the America’s Cup with its bespoke travel case this year for the 35th competition. Handmade by three craftsmen in Louis Vuitton’s historical atelier Asnières, France, the travel case is the result of over 400 hours of craftwork. It includes a removable briefcase in which the winner’s medals are held, a new door system, a new arrangement of fittings to hold the trophy securely during its travels, and a new microfiber lining to minimize any damage while in transit.
The Louis Vuitton’s America’s Cup Collection for Spring 2016
This spring, Louis Vuitton celebrates thirty-three years of partnership with a lifestyle collection for men, as seen in our March issue and available to buy in Louis Vuitton select stores from April 1st. The new collection offers a range of luxury casualwear, including chunky knitwear, technical outerwear, cargo shorts, and polos available in the trophy’s seasonal colours navy, red and blue. Graphic prints featuring the Gaston V, Semaphore and Victory boat add colour to the collection, while iconic leather goods are investments to keep for years to come. Our top pics are Louis Vuitton’s new Damier Cobalt Regatta, also found on iconic bags such as the Keepall and the Steamer.
The 35th American’s Cup Calendar
Missed the race in Oman? Here’s the schedule of races coming up over the next year.
February 27th – 28th, 2016
May 7th – 8th, 2016
June 11th–12th, 2016
July 23rd – 24th, 2016
September 10th – 11th, 2016
May – June, 2017
Overall Series Results so far
1. Emirates Team New Zealand
2. ORACLE TEAM USA
3. Land Rover BAR
4. SoftBank Team Japan
5. Artemis Racing
6. Groupama Team France
To discover more about the America’s Cup presented by Louis Vuitton : www.americascup.com