Teams from eight America’s Cup syndicates will hone their attacking skills at the Danish Open match racing event, part of this year’s Swedish Match Grand Prix tour, before heading to Cowes for the America’s Cup Jubilee
The participation of eight America’s Cup syndicates in the upcoming Danish Open 2001, 14-19 August, north of Copenhagen, promises excellent competition on the waters of Skovshoved Harbour. Finishing immediately prior the America’s Cup Jubilee in Cowes, England, these eight America’s Cup teams will trade the cut-and-thrust of top flight match racing for a US25,000 purse for the pomp and ceremony of Cowes.
Among the America’s Cup skippers and teams in attendance are former Swedish Match Tour champion Magnus Holmberg and his Stora Enso match race team comprising members of the Swedish Victory Challenge syndicate. Holmberg and crew are defending champions of the Danish Open and find themselves heading the Swedish Match Tour leaderboard after winning the first event in this year’s tour, the Trofeo Challenge Roberto Trombini Match Race in Ravenna, Italy, in July.
Included in the crowd of America’s Cuppers Holmberg will be facing is Jesper Bank, skippering a crew of Holmberg’s Victory Challenge teammates: Peter Holmberg, a seasoned America’s Cup veteran, who has taken over the reigns of Oracle Racing’s match race team and is fresh off a third place finish in Italy; Morten Henriksen of the illbruck Challenge, competing in his third Swedish Match Tour event; Gavin Brady of Prada Challenge, runner-up to Holmberg in the second Swedish Match Tour; and Andy Beadsworth of GBR Challenge.
Three relatively new faces to the Swedish Match Tour are Murray Jones of the Alinghi Challenge, Ben Ainslie of the OneWorld Challenge and Sebastien Destremau of Le Defi Challenge. Destremau will be leading Le Defi Challenge into its first appearance on the Swedish Match Tour since Bertrand Pacé fled his French roots to assist Team New Zealand bolster their defence.
Among the non-America’s Cup teams in attendance are Swedish Match Tour regulars Jesper Radich and his Team Steff-Houlberg and Jes Gram-Hansen and his Team Hotel Marienlyst, ranked sixth and seventh respectively by ISAF. Other skippers participating (and their ISAF rankings) are Denmark’s Henrik Jensen, (23), Sweden’s Johnie Berntsson, (24), and Denmark’s Lars Nordjerg and Jesper Feldt, (25 and 26 respectively).