Vilanova i la Geltrú is already preparing to host the debut of the Copa del América. The first preliminary regatta, in which the six participating teams will debut, already has a date and setting. It will be the historic port of Vilanova, from September 14 to 17. One day of training and three days of competition that will be broadcast open on television and that can be followed live from the beaches of the municipality, where more than 20,000 people are expected every day.
The one in Vilanova will be the first preliminary regatta and will mark a before and after in many aspects. "It will be the first competition aboard the AC40, which will be the same ones that will be used in the women's and youth regattas," said Aurora Català, vice president of ACE Barcelona -the organizing entity of the 37th edition of the Copa del America- during the official announcement of these preliminaries.
The organizers have visited and analyzed several ports on the Catalan coast before deciding on Vilanova, "which meets all the essential technical criteria of space for the six teams, water depth... and also operational criteria; the commercial activity of the port it will not interfere and the municipality can accommodate these 20,000 visitors a day that we estimate can travel during the regattas", explained Catà.
In principle, it is planned to carry out three preliminaries before the celebration of the Copa del América, which will officially start on August 22, 2024. The first will be the Vilanova appointment next September, the second is yet to be determined and the third will be held in Barcelona . "This pre-regatta is the first milestone of the America's Cup Legacy Projects Plan, in which all the administrations and the private sector are working together so that Barcelona and Catalonia are world capitals of sailing and have the maximum positive impact. for citizens", said Daniel Puig, president of the executive committee of the Fundació Barcelona Capital Nàutica.
Grant Dalton has been enthusiastic about the choice, "the port of Vilanova is perfect, the regattas will be held a few meters from the entrance to the port and La Daurada will offer a perfect view and a large 'fan village' will be installed in the huge public areas '", he said in a recorded message accompanied by images of the municipality and its coastline.
"This election is great news that confirms the organization's commitment to bring sailing sport closer to the entire territory, projecting our image to the world in an event that has millionaire audiences", Albert Castellanos, Secretary of Business i Competitiveness of the Department of Business. The president of Turisme de Barcelona, Eduard Torres, has also valued "Barcelona's capital status, which, in addition to attracting the event, has acted as a lever towards the territory".
The mayoress of Vilanova i la Geltrú, Olga Arnau, has described this event as "historic" for the municipality. "We will work to meet all expectations, uniting all possible synergies", she has assured. In addition to the Club Nàutic Vilanova, the Pendennis Vilanova and Vilanova Grand Marina facilities will be used to house the bases of the teams and their AC40s. And the restaurant and space for events La Daurada will give up its space of more than 10,000 meters with privileged views of the regatta course.