BMW ORACLE Racing Exhibit at Rockefeller Center Opens With Official Re-Christening of Magnificent America's Cup Yacht.
NEW YORK, June 16 /PRNewswire/ -- BMW ORACLE Racing, the only U.S. Challenger for the America's Cup -- sailing's most prestigious prize and the world's oldest trophy in sport -- is the centerpiece of an eye-catching interactive nautical exhibit that opened to the press today at New York's Rockefeller Center. The event, supported by the team's partners and sponsors BMW, Oracle, Allianz and Girard-Perregaux, is hosted by Tishman Speyer, co-owners of Rockefeller Center, and museum curated by Mystic Seaport -- The Museum of America and the Sea.
Beginning on June 16th and continuing through July 2nd, the exhibit will allow the public an opportunity for a rare, up-close look into the cockpit of the 80-foot, carbon fiber sailboat -- one of the U.S. team's America's Cup training yachts -- which boasts a towering 110-foot high mast. In addition to the racing yacht, the exhibit will feature boat pools with three-foot, remote-controlled America's Cup replica boats for racing, an America's Cup historical pavilion curated by Mystic Seaport, and real-time racing footage from Valencia, Spain, where the American team is competing in its bid to win the Cup back for the U.S.
At today's press preview, BMW ORACLE Racing crew members American Jon Ziskind, born in Lake Grove, Long Island, and New Zealander Ross Halcrow, an America's Cup winner, provided media with on board tours of the racing yacht. Young members of the New York City sailing club, Long Island Sound Optimist Team (LISOT) joined members of the FDNY and representatives from Tishman Speyer, BMW and Allianz Global Investors for an official re-christening and temporary renaming of the yacht to "Spirit of New York." The fledgling seamen were welcomed aboard the yacht -- a retired 2000-generation America's Cup Class yacht the team used for training -- for a tour.
The sailing exhibit, a first for Rockefeller Center, is titled USA Challenger for 32nd America's Cup at Rockefeller Center: BMW ORACLE Racing Bring the America's Cup Home.
The American team is currently training and competing in Valencia, Spain, host city of the 32nd America's Cup, which takes place in June 2007. The Americans will be competing in their final competition of the 2006 racing season June 22-July 2, traveling from the Rockefeller Center exhibit to Spain. Footage of the contest will be fed into Rockefeller Center on a large LED screen for public viewing.
Celebrations are planned by the organizing body of the 32nd America's Cup, America's Cup Management, to mark one year to the start of the event in Valencia, Spain, in June 2007. The 155-year-old America's Cup trophy itself will come to New York on June 18. The Louis Vuitton Cup -- the trophy presented to the winner of the Challenger Selection Series for the America's Cup -- will also be on display.
BMW ORACLE Racing must first win the Louis Vuitton Cup by defeating 10 other Challengers to earn the right to face the Defender in the 32nd America's Cup Match.
Other exhibit features include carbon fiber sails from the racing boat, a BMW M6 with carbon fiber roof top that both demonstrates BMW's lightweight design competence and represents the BMW Technology Transfer into the BMW ORACLE Racing Design Team, and a special edition BMW ORACLE Racing timepiece from Girard-Perregaux. Main sponsor Allianz, through its Asset Management arm Allianz Global Investors, will screen a series of specially produced team documentary films showcasing the excitement and professionalism of modern day America's Cup racing. Allianz will also host America's Cup winner and TV sailing analyst Gary Jobson for a series of lunchtime lectures about the America's Cup.
The exhibit will be open daily from 9 a.m. - 8 p.m. BMW
Bayerische Motoren Werke G.m.b.H. came into being in 1917, having been founded in 1916 as the Bayerische Flugzeugwerke AG (BFW); it became a stock corporation (Aktiengesellschaft) in 1918.
Today, the BMW Group is one of the ten largest car manufacturers in the world and possesses, with its BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce brands, three of the strongest premium brands in the car industry. The BMW Group also has a strong market position in the motorcycle sector and operates successfully in the area of financial services.
The BMW Group aims to generate profitable growth and above-average returns by focusing on the premium segments of the international automobile markets. With this in mind, a wide-ranging product and market initiative was launched back in 2001, which has resulted, over the past years, in the BMW Group expanding its product range considerably and strengthening its worldwide market position. The BMW Group will continue in this vein in the coming years.
Oracle is the world's largest enterprise software company. For more information about Oracle, please visit our Web site at http://www.oracle.com.
Allianz Group is one of the largest and most renowned financial services providers in the world. Representing an international network of strong brands with first-class products, Allianz brings together the expertise of specialists in the fields of property and casualty insurance, life and health insurance, asset management and banking. Founded in 1890 in Berlin, Allianz is now present in more than 70 countries with over 162,000 employees.
Allianz Global Investors offers a wide range of high performance mutual funds and investment solutions developed by Allianz's network of world-class investment specialists, amongst them PIMCO, Nicholas Applegate, RCM, NFJ and Oppenheimer Capital.
From its beginnings in Geneva in 1791 until the present day, GIRARD-PERREGAUX has never closed its doors despite the vicissitudes of two turbulent centuries. It can therefore make the legitimate claim to be one of the oldest watch companies committed to the concept of a manufactory. By cultivating a distinctive talent for innovation and independence, both of which guarantee its dynamism, it has achieved such an exceptional degree of savoir-faire that it now ranks among the leaders of the Swiss watch industry.
Mystic Seaport -- The Museum of America and the Sea -- is the nation's leading museum presenting the American experience from a maritime perspective. Located along the banks of the historic Mystic River in Mystic, Connecticut, Mystic Seaport is a major tourist destination with extensive collections representing the material culture of maritime America, and offers educational programs from preschool to post-graduate. For more information, call 888.973.2767 or visit http://www.mysticseaport.org.
Tishman Speyer is the co-owner and manager of Rockefeller Center, which is the site of numerous public exhibits and events, including Democracy Plaza, Centennial of Flight, Drive-In Movies at the Rock, Art Rock and large-scale installations of public art by world-renowned artists including Takashi Murakami, Jeff Koons and Jonathan Borofsky. Tishman Speyer is committed to the preservation and restoration of Rockefeller Center and recently refurbished and reopened Top of the Rock, the observation deck atop 30 Rockefeller Plaza, after a 20-year closure. Each day an estimated 250,000 people walk through the Rockefeller Plaza complex, which is home to the most famous Christmas Tree in the world.
About BMW ORACLE Racing and the America's Cup
BMW ORACLE Racing is the Challenger of Record for the 32nd America's Cup, representing Golden Gate Yacht Club of San Francisco, and the only American entry in the contest for sailing's most prestigious prize and the oldest trophy in international sport. Team owner is American Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle. Partner of the team is German premium car manufacturer BMW. The team is supported by main sponsor Allianz, a leading global financial services provider; associate sponsor Girard-Perregaux, Swiss manufacturer of high-class mechanical timepieces, and Technology Partners Henri Lloyd and Network Appliance, Inc. BMW ORACLE Racing is currently the top-ranked Challenger for the 2007 Louis Vuitton Cup, the Challenger Selection Series for the 32nd America's Cup. Eleven teams from nine nations are challenging for the Cup, with the winning Challenger facing the Swiss Defender Team Alinghi in the 32nd America's Cup Match in June 2007 in Valencia. The New York Yacht Club held the America's Cup for 132 years, until an Australian team broke the longest winning streak in sports in 1983. American Dennis Conner won the Cup back from Australia in 1987. The Cup was then successfully defended twice in San Diego, CA, before New Zealand claimed it in 1995. The landlocked Swiss won the Cup from New Zealand in 2003 and selected Valencia, Spain as the Host City for 2007.
CONTACT: Maya Israel, +1-212-843-8003, or Cell +1-917-445-0183, for Rockefeller Center