Is Barcelona a done deal to host the 37th America’s Cup?
Spanish news outlet Cronica says a deal has been agreed and will be signed this week
According to an article on Spanish news outlet Cronica the city of Barcelona has been chosen to host the 37th America’s Cup – beating off challenges from Jeddah in Saudi Arabia, Cork in Ireland, and Malaga, Spain.
There has been no official announcement from the 36th America’s Cup winners Emirates Team New Zealand but the team’s CEO and other senior members were known to have been in Spain over recent days on site visits to both Malaga and Barcelona.
With the March 31 deadline the Kiwis set for making the venue announcement looming, the Cronica story suggests that the city has reached an agreement with the city and that the deal will be signed in the coming days with the America’s Cup trophy as a backdrop.
Cronica says Barcelona have bid 70 million Euro to secure the America’s Cup hosting deal, which it says could have as much as 1,000 million Euro economic impact on the city. According to stories in the Spanish media in recent days Malaga – located nearly 500 miles to the south – had bid 75 million Euro to bring the Cup there.
The Barcelona money is believed to have come from a variety of sources, led by the Government of Catalonia, but including funds from a group of private companies headed by the Puig perfume family.
The Barcelona Port Authority is said to have allocated space in the Nova Bocana area of the port (see main picture), with plans in place to use secondary ports such as Mataró (above, 20 miles along the coast to the north) for teams to train from.
If true, the choice of Barcelona as host of the 37th America’s Cup will be well received by the teams and sailing fans around the world. The city proved its credentials as a high calibre regatta venue when it hosted the Olympic regatta at the 1992 Olympics and in terms of time zones its location works well for TV coverage – an important factor for potential team and event sponsors.
The news will come as a disappointment though for Cork, Jeddah, and Malaga who may now have to make do with the consolation prize of an invitation to host a World Series event raced in the new smaller AC40 foiling monohulls.