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America's Cup: Southern Spars to build rigs for British Challenger

by Southern Spars/Sail-World.com/nz 22 Aug 2018 05:43 PDT 23 August 2018
Sir Jim Ratcliffe of INEOS and Sir Ben Ainslie skipper of INEOS Team UK © INEOS Team UK

Southern Spars, the worlds leading bespoke carbon fibre spar maker, has announced it will be supplying the rig to the INEOS TEAM UK for the upcoming America’s Cup.

The arrangement is not believed to be exclusive and Southern Spars will continue to work, as they always have with Emirates Team New Zealand, and indeed any other team that wishes to to have their spars built in Auckland, the venue for the 36th America's Cup.

Construction of spars is not subject to the "constructed in country" requirements of the Protocol which governs the conduct of the 36th America's Cup, and using Southern Spars as the spar manufacturer ensures the British team has access to the best available facilities and expertise at the America's Cup venue.

The America’s Cup - fondly known as the “Auld Mug” - is the world’s greatest sailing regatta, with the next edition taking place in 2021 in Auckland, the home of Southern Spars. As the competition returns to their home soil, Southern Spars are proud to announce that they will be supplying the rig to the newly formed INEOS TEAM UK.

INEOS, one of the world’s largest manufacturing companies, recently announced their America’ Cup challenge - joining with Sir Ben Ainslie in the biggest ever British investment in the Cup’s history. Ainslie, the world’s most decorated Olympic sailor, will take the lead in designing and building the boat programme, as well as skippering the racing yacht.

Southern Spars is thrilled to partner with this first class team, who will be using the very best of British technology and boat construction to bring back the trophy to Britain.

On designing the rig for INEOS TEAM UK, the mast makers will push the performance of monohull yachts to the limit to create a foiling AC 75 that will be both challenging to sail and exhilarating to race – opening new horizons for racing yachts and being a remarkable boost for British sport.

This is not the first time that Southern Spars have been involved in the world’s most important yachting trophy. The company has a long history with the America’s Cup; both sharing the same values as leaders in their respective fields, with innovation and high performance being the driving forces behind their work. Southern Spars proven track record in the competition and their capabilities when it comes to precision carbon fibre manufacturing have proven that they are the only go-to manufacturer for the AC teams’ ultra high performance needs.

Commenting on the partnership, Grant Simmer, INEOS TEAM UK CEO said: “When it came to choosing a rig supplier capable of helping INEOS TEAM UK bring the America’s Cup back to Britain, Southern Spars were an obvious choice. We are delighted to be working with a company who will be able to draw on their profound experience, as well as bringing their distinctive innovative approach. We are positive that together with Southern Spars’ expertise and INEOS’ world class technology we can mount a successful challenge in 2021.”

About Southern Spars:

Southern Spars is a division of the North Technology Group, the world leader in sail-making technology. Southern Spars specialises in the design and construction of carbon fibre spars and components, rigging and rig servicing. As the industry pioneer, Southern Spars built its first carbon spar in 1990. Since then the company has pursued a passion for delivering world class cruising and racing spars, carbon rigging and service.

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