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Scuttlebutt News:

Louis Vuitton Pacific Series Breaks the Mold
by Lynn Fitzpatrick

Book Cover
(February 19, 2009) - Just as Bruno Troublé said in the foreword of the book that Swiss photographer and international umpire, Jürg Kaufmann and I published this week, “Timing is everything.” With 25 years of organizing and perfecting the Louis Vuitton Cup, Bruno Troublé and Louis Vuitton were going to ensure an interesting regatta format. Jürg and I knew that the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series was going to be a unique event.

We arrived in Auckland early and got into the same rhythm as the teams and the event organizers. Everyone was flexible and accessible. It was easy for us to interview teams and take photos. We even had the opportunity to ride in the 18th man position aboard Pataugas K-Challenge and China Team.

The regatta was produced at a top level. There were international teams, a lot of action compressed into 16 race days; plenty of landside activities; multiple spectator options, including live TV, radio and Virtual Eye coverage available in the press center and on the big screen in the SKY CITY village; and the grim reality that nearly all of the teams would be seeking sponsorship afterward. All of these factors led us to conclude that the LVPS was the ideal regatta for us to try to produce a book that would be available as soon as the regatta concluded.

We worked more than double-time during the regatta; providing our normal coverage by day and burning the midnight oil to develop a format for the book, load photos and write matching text. We tested ourselves by sticking to our outline. There were days when Jürg knew that photographing the races was secondary to taking pictures of spectators, landside activities, Auckland and key personalities that made the regatta happen.

It wasn’t until well into the regatta when we were sure that we could hit our target of having the book available as soon as the regatta concluded, that we approached Louis Vuitton. To our surprise, they embraced the concept and the standard of the material we had already produced. They helped to facilitate the remainder of the book. Even Louis Vuitton Chairman, Yves Carcelle, made time to sit down with us right before the Prize Giving to finalize a document that had come from Paris, 12 time zones away.

The most impressive things about the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series were the sheer will to make such a high-level regatta happen and the spontaneity and creativity of many people. ETNZ and BMW Oracle Racing’s combined shore team did an incredible job of keeping the boats operating and repairing sails; radio, TV and Virtual Eye teams cooperated to produce heaps of coverage; competitors, journalists and coaches pitched in to provide live commentary. Performance, professionalism and creativity were embraced during this historic regatta and new standards were set that will be carried through to other regattas. It’s all captured in the book and available to everyone who couldn’t be there.

Here is the link for details about the book:

Photos by Jürg Kaufmann

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