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PARIS — Leave it to Louis Vuitton to come up with its own World Series.
The French luxury giant said Wednesday it would sponsor a new international circuit of sailing races, starting with one in Nice, France, in November.
This story first appeared in the September 3, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Regattas are to be held several times a year, with Hong Kong; Auckland, New Zealand, and Newport, R.I., among cities already expressing interest.
Vuitton plans to hold a press conference in Paris on Tuesday to disclose more details.
The races, with dueling teams racing in identical boats, reprise the format of the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series held in Auckland in February. Such “match racing” is prized as an exhilarating spectacle that is easy to follow.
The new Louis Vuitton World Series, in concert with the World Sailing Team Association, will group participants from previous Vuitton regattas — such as America’s BMW Oracle Racing and Italy’s Mascalzone Latino — along with new entrants from Sweden, Russia, France and Italy.
Vuitton has associated its name with sailing for 25 years, including a long sponsorship of the America’s Cup qualifying races that wound up in 2007.