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London welcomes a great adventure

Venture Cup Media Release

The greatest powerboats in the world, superyachts, Canary Wharf, a challenge that starts at London’s iconic Tower Bridge and ends at the opening of the new Yacht Club de Monaco in Monte Carlo, navy special forces and super-teams battling it out with regular amateur teams, a Swedish scientist investigating human endurance and the azure waters of the Riviera. This isn’t the plot of the new bond film but the outline of a brand new world-class event which will begin in London in the summer of 2014.

The Venture Cup – the World’s longest, toughest and most prestigious powerboat race has announced plans to start its race in the heart of London on the Thames.

The event, which was unveiled beside City Hall in London, will officially start in summer 2014 but for those that can’t wait a shorter ‘test-race’ will be run this coming June, entitled the Venture Cup Prologue. As well as the test race which will start between the iconic arches of London’s Tower Bridge there will also be a fan event village created at Canary Wharf’s event site Wood Wharf which will celebrate all things nautical from June 5th to 8th 2013.

The main race in 2014 will be over 2,500 miles of demanding ocean, where crews will be forced to travel over and through some of the toughest conditions imaginable as they make their way from London to Monte-Carlo over two weeks.

Following on from the iconic moment of David Beckham in the Olympic opening ceremony, interest in powerboats has increased and the River Thames has once again been highlighted as the ideal platform for a world-class major sporting event.

London, and the wider UK, is very much at the heart of this great event. This epic challenge only ran once before, over 40 years ago, also starting from London. For the city it’s yet another clear example of why it’s the greatest location in the world for hosting major international events. The Venture Cup is expected to bring in over £30 million to the UK’s Capital from international coverage and direct spending when the main race runs in June of 2014 and will be an exciting addition to London’s annual events calendar.

Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “As Mayor of London it gives me huge pleasure in welcoming the prestigious Venture Cup to the shores of our great River Thames. The sight of these fearsome machines battling it out on the waves will offer a fantastic sight to behold, as well as a great day out for families and powerboat fanatics alike. This is another brilliant example of how London is cementing its reputation as the best place in the world to stage top class sporting events.”

The event will also be a flag-bearer for a British marine industry which supports over 4,200 businesses and has an annual turnover of almost £3 billion.

The natural relationship between London, Canary Wharf, and Monte-Carlo as three of the most prestigious names in international finance provides a suitable additional backdrop.

Next year’s event promises to bring the action directly to fans in some hugely exciting ways. Through the use of leading-edge technology the organisers promise an unsurpassed experience, allowing audiences to engage with the Venture Cup when and how it suits them.

This year’s ‘Prologue’ event begins with a spectacular 9am start at Tower Bridge on Saturday 8th June, after which the teams race to Southend and then along the south coast to Brighton before crossing the Channel to Guernsey. The following days will see the fleet race around the Channel Islands to St. Cast in France, before finishing on Tuesday 11th June in Poole.

While the Venture Cup is designed to be a truly awesome adventure, there is some serious stuff happening around it as well. Environmental responsibility is a central theme to all aspects of the race, with a robust commitment to going beyond current best-practice. A high-end research project, backed by respected international bodies, will yield results that should have positive impacts on patrol, rescue and naval vessels for years to come.

The organisers of the Venture Cup added: “At one level the Venture Cup is the ultimate glamour race, on another it’s a return to the romance of a true challenge, but at all levels it’s a genuine adventure. It’s also an accessible race – it’s not for those with either a God-given talent or a reckless belief in their immortality. Those that succeed will need to be armed with only a decent brain and an ability to take a lot of pain ….something most people can empathise with. We believe people are going to love the human stories in the challenge, and come with us, virtually and emotionally on this great journey from London to Monte-Carlo”.

For more information see the Venture Cup website (opens in a new window).