Luna Rossa launches America's Cup boat
Sat, 27 Oct 2012 2:57p.m.
Fireworks and fanfare have marked the launch of Luna Rossa's America's Cup catamaran at the team's base in Auckland on Friday evening.
Several hundred people looked on as Miuccia Prada, the wife of challenge head Patrizio Bertelli and granddaughter of Mario Prada, founder of the luxury fashion label that carries her name, launched the Italian syndicate's new AC72.
After the champagne bottle was smashed, the silver multi-hulled boat was manoeuvred and lowered into the Viaduct Harbour.
Family, friends and supporters of Luna Rossa, along with members of Team New Zealand, were among the guests at the launch.
Luna Rossa has built just the one boat for the America's Cup challengers' series. While the two hulls were built in Italy, much of the other work was completed in New Zealand.
The Italian syndicate has a cooperation deal with Team New Zealand, which includes access to Team New Zealand design and performance data until the end of this year.
Team New Zealand is already sailing the first of its two AC72s off Auckland.
The challengers' series for the Louis Vuitton Cup will be held off San Francisco in July and August.
America's Cup holders Oracle Racing will defend the cup against the winner of the challengers' series in September 2013 at the same venue.
It will be the first time a multi-hull vessel is used for a multi-challenger America's Cup.
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