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LE DEFI AREVA – Hauraki Gulf, here we come!

Press Release 16

Friday 6 September, 2002 – Auckland

LE DEFI AREVA – Hauraki Gulf, here we come!

LE DEFI AREVA hoisted sail for the first time this week to test the waters of the Hauraki Gulf. FRA-79, one of the two fluorescent lime boats shipped out by the French Challenger last week, boasted the logos of two new major sponsors, Groupe Legris Industries and Devoteam Consulting.

As main sponsor for the French team in the 1992 America’s Cup and ongoing supporter of the Challenge, Groupe Legris Industries is joining forces with Devoteam Consulting, (the Challenger’s web providers) to assume prominence on the mainsail and hull of the French boat in 2003 and a more important role in the Challenge.

"We are thrilled that Legris and Devoteam have decided to join the ranks of major sponsors in this year’s Cup Challenge", says General Manager for LE DEFI AREVA, Xavier de Lesquen. "Legris Industries has participated in the America’s Cup since 1992 and has been with LE DEFI AREVA since its inception in 1997. Their support has been invaluable to the development of the project, as has that of Devoteam Consulting who have created an impressive and interactive website for us."

After a month off the water and three years of preparation, the French sailing team has been champing at the bit to get back into training. "It was fantastic", says Philippe Presti who was at the helm of FRA-79 as she made her maiden voyage into the Hauraki Gulf. "There was a little bit of anticipation before we sailed but the team quickly got back into the swing of things and did some good work out there. After three years of build-up, we are looking forward to some great competition when racing starts on October 1st.

The French Challenge is still something of an unknown quantity in syndicate circles, with the lime green boats as yet untested against other challengers.

LE DEFI AREVA’s other boat FRA-69 is still in the base hangar as it undergoes modification.

Groupe Legris Industries is an industrial group specialising in the mechanical sector. The group employs around 3300 people worldwide and in 2001, had an annual turnover of 524 millions euros.

Devoteam Siticom specialises in technology consulting in IT & T and e-business. They are LE DEFI AREVA’s internet partner, co-producing and piloting the Challenge website,

************ already a success First online in June 1999

10 million view pages since the America’s Cup 2000

1 million view pages since May 2002

7,000 subscribers on the mailing list

200 messages per day on the noticeboard (the biggest in the sailing world)

Direct from Auckland The new version of the site will offer video-streaming, games, photos of the team and ‘Night News’ which will give overnight updates on what’s been happening in the Hauraki Gulf.

The web team includes four french journalists, an english translator, a radio journalist, a video-streaming specialist and photographers, all of whom form an integral part of LE DEFI AREVA at the French Base in the Viaduct Basin.

LE DEFI AREVA pour l'America's Cup 2003 83, Halsey Street Auckland Central New Zealand PRESS CONTACT Emma Wilkinson Tel : +64 (0)21 633 530 E-mail :

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