The eyes of the sailing world are firmly fixed on New Zealand at the moment and the America's Cup—a world famous event in which Akzo Nobel is playing its part.
Nine crews are currently battling it out for the Louis Vuitton Cup and the winner of that trophy will qualify to challenge current America's Cup holders New Zealand for the main prize.
Out of a total of ten competing boats, nine have been coated by Akzo Nobel products. The British effort, for example, is being spearheaded by the GBR Challenge, a boat for which AWLGRIP® was selected as the official paint and coatings supplier (AWLGRIP is a leading worldwide marine and aerospace brand which was purchased by Akzo Nobel earlier this year).
Of the nine vessels that have been coated with the company's products, four used International Paint and five AWLGRIP.
Under the rules of the competition, each team competes against the other challengers twice, after which the lowest placed team is eliminated. The remaining eight boats then take part in a series of quarter finals, semi-finals and finals races until an eventual winner is determined. That team will then race against the New Zealand crew in a best-of-nine series, the victor claiming the America's Cup.
The oldest trophy in sport, the competition has a long and distinguished history and since its inception in 1851, the final has featured an American crew on all but one occasion—the USA were also the only winners for the first 132 years.
Three American teams are competing in this year’s event, two from Italy and one each from Sweden, Switzerland, France and Great Britain.
The second round-robin stage begins on October 22, while the Louis Vuitton Cup will finally be decided in January. The America's Cup races will take place in February.
(Released: October 14, 2002)