BY Anna Cummins on 9 May 2023

The vessel is the sixth AC40 to be delivered in this America’s Cup cycle

The Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli America’s Cup team brought their brand-new AC40 out of its hangar in Cagliari over the weekend, and gathered the team around for the christening ceremony.

Giulia Caponnetto, a longstanding member of the media team, was invited to smash the customary bottle of Champagne over the bow strut and named her Luna Rossa to cheers from the team below.

It was a clean hit and the bottle disintegrated – said to be a good sign when naming a yacht.

Video: Luna Rossa launches new AC40 in Cagliari Luna Rossa AC40

Luna Rossa AC40

Shortly after the ceremony, the Italian shore team lifted this, the sixth AC40 to be delivered in this America’s Cup cycle, into the clear Cagliari waters with the sailing team led by Francesco Bruni, intent on tow-testing without the mast. The AC40 vessels will be used in training and in qualifying events leading up to the 37th America’s Cup in 2024.

However, it was not to be, as a minor issue with the foil cant system and flap controls meant that the planned session was called off, and the boat was craned out shortly afterwards and rolled back into the tent. The team says commissioning will be conducted in the coming days.

Racing in the America’s Cup Match, which will be a best-of-13 (first to seven) format, will start on Saturday 12 October, with two races scheduled, followed by a further two races on Sunday 13 October 2024.

In January, organisers confirmed the late addition of French team K-Challenge Racing, representing the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez yacht club, who has joined as the event’s fifth challenger. The K-Challenge team last challenged for the America’s Cup for the event’s 32nd edition in Valencia in 2007. 

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