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Swiss Challenge Tour

Geneva, 12 march 2001

Last Saturday during the General Assembly of the Swiss Sailing Federation held in Tenero, in Canton Ticino, Russell Coutts, Skipper of the Swiss Challenge for the America’s Cup 2003, Bernhard Stegmeier, outgoing President of “Swiss Sailing” and his successor, Francis Stockbürger, announced the official launch of the Swiss Challenge Tour.

Jochen Schümann, 3-time Olympic gold medallist, silver medal winner in Sydney and helmsman with the Swiss Challenge, has developped a competition concept which will give Swiss sailors the chance to see how they measure up against members of the Swiss Challenge.

"The aim is to give young sailors the opportunity to benefit from our experience, said Schümann. We will make the most of these get-togethers to explain our progress, to talk about the history and the format of the America’s Cup, and to give seminars that concentrate on the finer points of match racing."

Wishing to support and develop sailing in Switzerland, especially at junior level, the Swiss Challenge will distribute valuable prizes to the winners of races with which it is associated. These prizes will be allocated to the junior section of the club of the winner of each race. In cases where members of the Swiss Challenge win, the prize will be given to “Swiss Sailing”, who will in their turn benefit the young hopefuls of Swiss sailing. So sailors, all hands to the tiller!!

"The Swiss Challenge Tour is a tremendous opportunity to improve the level of sailing in our country, said Bernhard Stegmeier. it’s also a source of fantastic motivation for young people".

Christian Scherrer, crew member of the Swiss Challenge, will be the circuit “Tour Officer”, in other words, he will supervise the operational synchronisation of the races.


Swiss Challenge’s training boat, ‘SUI 59’, is undergoing a face-lift at the Decision SA Boatyard; she will have her first outing on lake Geneva in the middle of May, and will sail in front of our club: the Société Nautique de Genève.

To celebrate and share this exceptional event, we will soon have the pleasure of inviting you to a press conference during which we will unveil the name, the logo and the colours of our new boat. You will receive details of this conference as soon as possible. We are looking forward to welcoming you.

Program of the Swiss Challenge Tour:

12-13 May, Geneva (Societé Nautique de Genève and Centre d’Entraînement à la Régate), match racing aboard "Surprise".

9-10 June, Lugano (CVLL), long distance (Lüzzina 2001) in Surprises, match racing final.

7-8 July, Thun (TYC), long distance (Thun-Interlaken-Thun) in ‘Dolphins’, match racing final.

4-5 August, St-Moritz (SCStM), match racing in ‘Streamlines’.

8 September, Neuchâtel (CVN), Jura Lakes’ Championship, then match racing final.

15-16 September, Geneva (SNG), Grande Finale.

The Swiss Challenge for the America’s Cup was born out of Ernesto Bertarelli’s fervent wish to take part in the next edition of this prestigious competition, and out of his determination to do everything in his power to try and win. Flying the Swiss flag and carrying the colours of the Societé Nautique de Genève, Swiss Challenge benefits from the experience and talent of Russell Coutts, 2-time winner of the Americaís Cup.

© Scoop Media

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