Prada Will Reportedly Take Over Naming Rights Of America's Cup Challenger Series
America's Cup "leaks keep coming via the Italian media," with the latest report suggesting a "stronger profile" for Prada at the next event as it gets set to replace long-term sponsor Louis Vuitton, according to STUFF. Italian yachting site Vela also suggested that Team New Zealand will release the 2021 America's Cup protocol in Auckland on Sept. 29, which is in line "with the planning already announced by the holders." Italian fashion house Prada is the backer of Italian syndicate Luna Rossa, which is the challenger of record, "working in tandem with Team New Zealand to shape the new rules and class" for yachts for the 36th edition of the Cup. The challenger series will reportedly be renamed the Prada Cup, "with the winner of that going on to face the Kiwis in the match for the America's Cup" (STUFF, 9/20). The NEW ZEALAND HERALD reported the full protocol for the '21 event is "set to be released next weekend," but the full design rules will not be released until Nov. 30. However, there have been "several already confirmed designs and changes for the next event." Team NZ Dir Grant Dalton confirmed that cyclors will play no part in the next America's Cup. Last week, prompted by an article in Italian media, Team NZ announced the next America's Cup would be sailed in a "high performance monohull." Some "took that to mean a foiling monohull, but Dalton is yet to confirm if that will be the case." He "dodged the question" when it was asked, saying, "More details will released on November 30." Dalton was "more open when the talk turned to the team, refuting the suggestion that a return to monohulls would neutralise their design advantage in the multihulls." He said, "We believe our design team is capable of giving us another great yacht, and that catamarans wouldn't be ideal for the [choppy sea state] in Auckland" (NZ HERALD, 9/20).