Four days ago we were privileged to be guests in the rather posh private Club 72 at the semi-finals of the run-up Louis Vuitton Cup races on San Francisco Bay. Although Louis Vuitton [LV] owns Veuve Clicquot and Moët & Chandon [MH] champagnes, the bubbly on offer was Mumm Napa Valley. (I was a bit surprised to find no Chandon, my alma mater and LVMH connection, since Chandon is also owned by LVMH.) Next door in the Napa Valley wine pavilion, all comers could buy glasses of (only) Napa's finest to savor while they enjoyed the races.
Oh yes, the races. New Zealand handily won the first, and the second was postponed a day because of high winds on the bay. This observer noted as they whizzed by that NZ's team was trim and fit, and worked smoothly together. The losing Italian team (Prada on the 72' sail) seemed slightly less coordinated, and several appeared devoted to their pasta. The cameras were loving the 50+ year old Italian crew member, who was keeping up just fine with the ragazzi.
In September, the winner of the Louis Vuitton Cup, sure to be New Zealand this far into the race schedule, will compete with last year's winner Oracle (USA) for the America's Cup. Those boats are thrillingly fast. Multiple cameras on board, in the air and on shore capture the action for the big screens at the races as well as time-delayed TV coverage. Worth fitting into your schedule.