Two preliminary race series for the 35th America’s Cup will take place in Portsmouth in 2015 and 2016

Portsmouth is to host two preliminary race
series in 2015 and 2016 in the run up to the 35th America’s Cup in

The America’s Cup World Series will take
place off the coastal city between 23-26 July 2015 and 21-24 July 2016.

The preliminary race series will consist of
eight to ten regattas taking place around the world over the next two years.

All of the challengers for the 35th
cup will compete in the events and their overall placement will affect the
seeding and starting score they take into the America’s Cup Qualifier events in

The news comes a few months after it was
confirmed that Sir Ben Ainslie’s base for the British team would be built in the Camber Docks in Portsmouth.

Speaking at Tuesday’s launch at London’s
OXO Tower, Ainslie said: “A key part of BAR’s plans was to bring America’s Cup
racing to Great Britain and I would like to thank Sir Keith and his team for
making those plans become a reality.

“The last America’s Cup World Series was a
game changer for the sport of sailing, the racing was entertaining and brought
in the crowds.

“The new foiling AC45s are going to be faster
and even more exciting than the previous generation and we promise to provide
an event experience like you have never seen before – come and cheer us on!”

America’s Cup races in Portsmouth will
encompass most of the city’s existing visitor attractions, including HMS
and HMS Victory, the Mary Rose Museum, Spinnaker Tower, Gunwharf Quays and
Southsea Common.

Spectator’s will be able to enjoy three
days of racing, including practice racing on the Friday and then two races on
Saturday and two races on ‘Super Sunday Final’.

Sir Keith Mills, whose been central to
delivering some of the UK’s greatest sporting events, said: “I’m passionate
about bringing world-class sporting events to Great Britain and delighted that
America’s Cup World Series will be coming to Portsmouth.

“Our plans are for more than two action
packed long weekends. We are also putting together a three year activation
programme running right up until the end of the 35th America’s Cup
in 2017.” 

While there will be the opportunity to buy
tickets for prime seating areas, event organisers are aiming to provide the
public with a number of free-to-view areas in the Race Village.

Six teams have entered the 35th
America’s Cup so far, including Ben Ainslie Racing, Artemis Racing, Emirates
Team New Zealand, Luna Rossa Challenge, ORACE TEAM USA and Team France.

Sir Ben Ainslie is looking to bring the
America’s Cup home to Britain after a successful campaign onboard ORACLE TEAM
USA last year as tactician.

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