America's Cup - Test periods to focus on preparation and refinement

Four AC45s sail on Hauraki Gulf
©Ivor Wilkins/www.americascup.com
In preparation for the America’s Cup World Series 2011, which kicks off this August in Cascais, Portugal and features stops in Plymouth, UK and San Diego, event organizers will stage on and off the water dress rehearsals in Auckland April 26-29 and May 2-6.

'We want to put the fans right at the heart of the television programming, so this test phase will enable us to bring that vision to life,' said Craig Thompson, CEO, America’s Cup Event Authority. 'We are looking forward to the opportunity to give our onboard cameras and graphics systems a thorough test with the athletes and the AC45s as we work towards transforming the way people watch the sport of sailing.'

These test periods will focus on reviewing all of the courses, support systems and management procedures necessary to stage each AC World Series event and provide a superior experience for both the teams and spectators worldwide.

'There's a lot of innovation that's been proposed for the America's Cup World Series events with the race courses, the umpiring systems, the onboard equipment, and the television coverage,' said Iain Murray, Regatta Director and CEO of America’s Cup Race Management. 'Over the next two weeks we’ll be testing our thinking in these areas, to make sure we’re on the right track now, so that come the first ACWS event in Cascais this August, we’re ready to put on a great show with spectacular racing.'

At the conclusion of each week’s test period, event organizers will host a media briefing to discuss insights, learnings and progress. Briefing details to come.

Led by America’s Cup Race Management (ACRM), the first test session will include race course configurations that enable tight, tactical racing as well as umpiring and race management that allows for instant calls during fast-paced competition. Five AC45 catamarans, crewed by America’s Cup teams, are expected to participate.

The second session, led by the America’s Cup Event Authority (ACEA), will provide the first test of the next-generation broadcast images and graphics that change the way people will watch sailing on television. Six AC45s, with America’s Cup crews, are expected to participate.

ACRM testing: April 26 - 29
ACEA broadcast and graphics testing: May 2 - 6
Testing on Hauraki Gulf, Auckland, New Zealand
Media briefings to be hosted at 101 Halsey Street in the Viaduct, Auckland, New Zealand

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