33rd America's Cup to take place in Valencia, February 1-25

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The Independent Online

Following a lengthy dispute concerning where it would take place, the Mediterranean port city of Valencia on the east coast of Spain will host the 33rd America's Cup from February 1 to February 25.

The Alinghi team of the Swiss yacht club Société Nautique de Genève are current title holders, having won the last two America's Cups in 2003 and 2007. BMW Oracle Racing of the Golden Gate Yacht Club in San Francisco, USA, are challenging them for the trophy.

Both yachts are now in Valencia and crews are preparing for the February duel. Alinghi have even been trying out some small motorized gliders with which they hope to obtain more accurate wind speed measurements.

Since the last America's Cup, two new sailing tournaments have sprung up amid uncertainty about the Cup's future. Louis Vuitton backed the formulation of the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series, which ran from January 30 to February 14, 2009, and its successor the Louis Vuitton Trophy which is a multi-stage tournament with meetings scheduled for March, May, November of 2010 and then January 2011 in New Zealand, Italy, the UAE and Hong Kong respectively.

The last America's Cup was also held in Valencia, at which time there were big screen televisions showing the race action in America's Cup Park, a host of spectator boats made available, while the action could be seen on TV channels around the world such as Comcast's Versus in the USA, Sky Sports in the UK, TSR in Switzerland, Canal+ Sport in France and TVE in Spain.

http://33rd.americascup.com

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