Please select your home edition
Edition
Henri Lloyd 50 Years

America's Cup Event Authority CEO talks to Valencia Sailing

by ValenciaSailing.com on 29 Oct 2010
34th America’s Cup - - Craig Thompson, America’s Cup Event authority CEO ACEA - Photo Gilles Martin-Raget © http://photo.americascup.com/

Top European sailing website, ValenciaSailing.com continues a series of interviews with the people in charge of shaping the 34th America's Cup in line with the vision of the current Defender, its owner Larry Ellison and its CEO Russell Coutts. We spoke with Craig Thompson, CEO of the America's Cup Event Authority, the body in charge of everything related to the pinnacle event of the sport, except for the racing itself.

Valencia Sailing: Can you briefly take us through your background and how you ended up becoming CEO of the America's Cup Event Authority ?

Craig Thompson: Most recently I was with TEAM Marketing in Switzerland and we were the agency that UEFA chose to set up the European Champions League. Myself and a number of colleagues started the Champions League, together with UEFA, back in 1992. We created the marketing platform and the concept for the Championship League, which we then implemented. I was with the Champions League from 1992 until 2003 when I left to take a break. After that I was involved with the set up of the Champions Hockey League in Europe, a European hockey league similar in style to the Champions League in football, then in several other projects and I finally joined the America's Cup just recently as CEO of the America's Cup Event Authority.

Valencia Sailing: From what I see you have no sailing background or at least you haven't been involved with any major sailing event prior to joining the America's Cup. Is that correct?

Craig Thompson: I had some experience with the 32nd America's Cup in Valencia when I did some consulting work both for America's Cup Management (ACM) and Alinghi. So, I do have a little bit of sailing experience but I wouldn't say I have any extensive experience in that sport.

Valencia Sailing: Do you think this factor could be a problem or at least a disadvantage?

Craig Thompson: To the contrary, I think it's an advantage, assuming that I'm surrounded by top sailing people that have extensive knowledge of the sport like Russell Coutts, Tom Ehman or Iain Murray. As long as there is people like that in the team it's an advantage havifng someone like myself or Richard Worth, Chairman of ACEA, that don't have an insider, intimate knowledge of the sport because we can look at it from a more objective viewpoint as sports marketers. We can look at the sport in terms of what needs to be done to make it friendlier for fans, television and the sponsors and that was exactly the role I had in the Champions League in football. Being an American myself, I came to Europe knowing very little about football (soccer) and I was managing the Champions League project for many years. I actually think there is an advantage to be not so familiar with the sport as long as you are surrounded by people that are very familiar with it.

For the rest of this story http://valenciasailing.blogspot.com/2010/10/craig-thompson-ceo-of-americas-cup.html!click_here
NaiadHamilton Island LuxuryBarz Optics - Melanin Lenses

Related Articles

Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 2
Yachting NZ's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is unprecedented Yachting New Zealand's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is without precedent. Subject to Appeal, the Kiwis have signaled that they will reject 30% of the positions gained in the ISAF World Sailing Championships in Santander in 2014.
Posted on 22 May
Gladwell's Line - World Sailing changes tack after IOC windshift
Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick. Every blow well earned over issues such as the pollution at Rio, the Israeli exclusion abomination plus a few more. But now World Sailing is getting it right.
Posted on 21 May
Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 1
Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving its goals Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving goals set in the Olympic Commission report of 2010. Around 64 countries are expected to be represented in Rio de Janeiro in August. That is a slight increase on Qingdao and Weymouth, but more importantly a full regional qualification system is now in place
Posted on 19 May
Taming the beast-a conversation with Stuart Meurer of Parker Hannifin
While AC72 cats were fast, they difficult to control, so Oracle partnered with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way. If you watched videos of the AC72s racing in the 34th America’s Cup (2013), you’re familiar with the mind-boggling speeds that are possible when wingsail-powered catamarans switch from displacement sailing to foiling mode. While foiling is fast, there’s no disguising the platform’s inherent instability. Now, Oracle Team USA has teamed up with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way.
Posted on 18 May
From foiling Moths to Olympic starting lines-a Q&A with Bora Gulari
Bora Gulari’s is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class, along with teammate Louisa Chafee. Bora Gulari (USA) has made a strong name for himself within high-performance sailing circles, with wins at the 2009 and 2013 Moth Worlds. In between, he broke the 30-knort barrier and was the 2009 US SAILING Rolex Yachtsman of the Year. His latest challenge is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class as skipper, along with his teammate Louisa Chafee.
Posted on 12 May
Concern for Zika at Rio Olympics is now deadly serious
Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, or the Rio Olympics. Many others have, and they were apt, but things have changed. So here now we have a situation where one man, Associate Professor Amir Attaran, who does have a more than decent string of letters after his name, is bringing nearly as many facts to bear as references at the article's end
Posted on 12 May
The importance of being Alive
Since buying the stunningly pretty Reichel-Pugh canting keel 66-footer, and re-naming her Alive, Since buying the stunningly pretty Reichel-Pugh canting keel 66-footer, and re-naming her Alive, the team have lined up for a lot of things, won plenty and nabbed a record, as well. She’s presently in a yard in the Philippines having a minor refit in readiness for the Australian season. It will commence with the upcoming Brisbane to Keppel and then head sharply into this year’s Hobart.
Posted on 10 May
Hoisted on their own petard
Now it was not that long ago that we wondered if there were some genuinely Shakespearean elements beginning to appear... Now it was not that long ago that we wondered if there were some genuinely Shakespearean elements beginning to appear in World Sailing’s premier event, the Sailing World Cup. In that time, a flurry of material has espoused all manner of joyous points including travel grants and prize money. That’s terrific and the hope is that somehow this will overcome the tyranny of distance for Melbourne
Posted on 9 May
Zhik - The brand born of a notion, not its history
here is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline is officially marketed as Made For Water There is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline has been officially marketed as Made For Water, and this is precisely what the company has done for the last eight years before the succinct and apt strapline came from out of R&D and into mainstream visibility.
Posted on 8 May
So, thou doth protest too much, me thinks
And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen about now. At any rate, it is simply an adaptation of Lady Gertrude’s original line. We merely seek to use it as a way to demonstrate that when there is a lot of brouhaha going on, the smoke screen ultimately ends up as a lovely, colourful flag as to the real intent behind it.
Posted on 4 May