Argo Challenge Campaign for America's Cup announced

Keith Burhans, Christian Giannini, Lars Grael, Lynn Fitzpatrick, Niki Birrell and Jens Kroker celebrate Argo Challenge gathering at 2011 Rolex Miami OCR.
Argo Challenge
The Argo Challenge (www.argochallenge.com) announced its campaign to fund an international crew of disabled athletes in the America’s Cup, the most prestigious competition in international yachting. The goal is to raise between $6 and $10 million by the March 31st deadline for entry fees. The America’s Cup will be held in San Francisco in 2013 but the World Series begins in June.

Lynn Fitzpatrick, Argo Challenge communications and marketing director, made the announcement from Shake a Leg Miami, the host of three Paralympic sailing disciplines during the Rolex Miami Olympic Classes Regatta currently ongoing through January 29th. 'Let’s change the notion of what is normal in what will be one of the most visible international sporting events for the next two and half years,' she said. 'The world’s best sailors will test their limits and we want to ensure that the Argo Challenge is there.' 'The Argo Challenge marks a milestone in sport and social values,' said Argo Challenge President, Antonio Spinelli from Turin, Italy. 'This was just a dream five years ago and it’s a reality now because one of the greatest sailors has agreed to be Argo’s skipper.'

Two-time Olympic Bronze medalist and Argo skipper, Lars Grael, will be joined on board by 10 other Argonauts: talented sailors and cross-trained competitive athletes from at least six countries including Brazil, England, France, Germany, Ireland and the U.S..' Our objective is to win every competition we participate in, ' says Grael who lost his leg ten years ago during a regatta. ' We are highly competitive athletes first and foremost and among the most able people you’ll ever meet. '

'This is a challenge within a challenge,' said interim CFO, Christian Giannini from San Francisco. 'To get to the starting line we have to raise the awareness about the campaign. We need a management team, designers, trainers and more so that sponsors will be knocking on our door to be affiliated with the best message that the America’s Cup, sailing and sport can send to the world. There is an opportunity for breakthroughs in all areas from adaptive equipment to fitness to safety to teamwork'

About the Argo Challenge
The Argo Challenge Campaign for the America’s Cup motto is 'WeCanUCan.' The campaign is accepting donations from $5 to $50 million and seeking sponsorships and alliances. For more information contact: christian.giannini@argochallenge.org or (415) 308-5899 or go to www.argochallenge.com where you can follow Paralympic athletes and members of the Argo Challenge at the Rolex Miami Olympic Classes Regatta through January 29th.