Ireland among finalists in bid to host America’s Cup

Organisers visited Cork last month to examine suitability for sailing race

Team New Zealand after their 2021 America’s Cup victory. Photo: Phil Walter/Getty Images

Team New Zealand after their 2021 America’s Cup victory. Photo: Phil Walter/Getty Images

 

An update on Ireland’s bid to host the prestigious America’s Cup in 2024 will be provided at Cabinet this morning by Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney.

He will tell Ministers Ireland has progressed to the final stage of judging with a final decision due in eight or so weeks.

There are only a small number of finalists, it is understood.

Ireland’s bid is understood to be based around Cork Harbour and an assessment team from the organisers visited Cork last month to examine its suitability for the race.

They looked at its technical suitability for a racing circuit and examined its tides, wind speeds and direction, water depth, and berthing facilities.

New Zealand is the current holder of the cup (the oldest trophy in sport predating the modern Olympics by 45 years) however the team and the New Zealand government are unlikely to agree terms to stage the next event there for a 4th time so an international competition has been ongoing to win the hosting of the next tournament.

Mr Coveney has been working closely with the Taoiseach and Minister for Sport Catherine Martin on Ireland’s bid to host the 37th America’s cup.

The America’s cup is recognised as the 3rd largest sporting event globally after the Football World Cup and the Olympics, in terms of longevity, economic and media impact it delivers to the host venue.

The racing takes place over a period of 3 to 4 months and the teams are based at the host venue for at least 6 months prior to the start of the competition and for as long as 3 years in the build-up period.

The cup that concluded on March 17th this year had a global viewership of 940 million and estimates of the value of the race for the New Zealand economy are in the hundreds of millions.

The New Zealand Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment in 2017 forecast between €355 million to €592 million would be injected directly into New Zealand’s economy between 2018 and 2021 as a result of hosting the America’s Cup.

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