With one days notice, the city of Newport has put together a pep-rally and support gathering today to bring the America’s Cup into town. Thousands have showed up to hear members of the venue selection committee and America’s Cup dignitaries talk to the press about the real possibility of Newport hosting the next America’s Cup.
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Last Thursday was a very special day in Newport for sailors and tourists alike, as the famed America’s Cup trophy was on display just a few steps from the Performance Research office! The America’s Cup is the oldest active trophy amongst all of sport, with a long and famed history involving Newport and the New York Yacht Club.
Below are a couple of pictures and you can check out more coverage at www.sailnewport.org.
The trophy was on display as part of a national tour from boat sponsors BMW and Oracle.
Speaking of sponsorship, click the link below to a Performance Research Independent Study highlighting the potential benefits of sponsoring an America’s Cup boat!
In light of the current running of the America’s Cup in Valencia, Spain, we decided to post one of our Independent Studies regarding the worlds most prestigious race. Check it out below and stay tuned for more………
Log-Ons and Sponsors and Boats, Oh My!
Who knew sailors could surf?According to a nationwide study of sailing fans by Performance Research, over half (61%) of the America’s Cup audience reported logging on after almost every race and nearly three fourths (74%) followed the America’s Cup on the internet this year, a testament to the expanded internet coverage and the ever-increasing number of internet users. Virtual Spectator Limited (providing subscriptions to live on-line coverage of the America’s Cup) might be a good site to place your virtual bets with 45% of the fans commenting that they would be “Somewhat” or “Very likely” to pay for extended coverage such as Virtual Spectator during future America’s Cup defenses (19% of those surveyed signed on with Virtual Spectator to follow this year’s Cup).
Sponsors win even when boats lose. According to Nicole Alio, project manager for Performance Research U.S., “There seems to be an overall acceptance of and appreciation for the sponsors of this America’s Cup compared to the previous three defenses. I believe this approval is because fans are beginning to realize that corporate sponsorship is essential to creating a winning team and to bringing the Cup back to the United States“. In fact, the vast majority of fans interviewed (81%) approved corporate sponsorship as “Essential to the overall success of the event”. Sponsors are not only becoming accepted by the fans but are seen as “More innovative” (62%) and “More interested in their customers” (53%) than their competitors as a result of their affiliation with the America’s Cup. There has been a steady increase in reported brand loyalty when comparing the results to a similar study conducted during the 1995 defense (34%) where now, nearly one half (44%) of the fans interviewed reported that they would “Almost always” or “Frequently” select America’s Cup sponsors’ products over those of non-sponsors.
Paul Cayard talks the talk and walks the walk. Even though the fans were somewhat evenly split among which U.S. syndicate they had originally hoped would make it to the finals, (America One 23% / Young America 27% / America True 18% / Star & Stripes 20% / Abaracadabara 3%), the performance of skipper Paul Cayard seemed to endear him as the future US representative. Sailing fans rated Paul Cayard highest (47%) as the America’s Cup personality they would most trust as a product endorser over other stalwarts including Dennis Conner (23%), Dawn Riley (33%) and Russell Couts (32%). Furthermore, three out of the seven most frequently recalled America’s Cup sponsors were affiliated with Paul Cayard and America One – Ford, Hewlett Packard, and SAIC. Citizen, Toyota, Italian syndicate sponsor Prada and Challenger series sponsor Louis Vuitton rounded out the top seven mentions. According to the fans, Paul Cayard is the man with the right message and image that sponsors should look to in the future.
The typical America’s Cup fan in this study was a male (66%) college graduate (84%) over 45 years of age (75%), with a total annual household income of $60,000 or more (83%).
Three hundred and four (304) telephone interviews were conducted nationwide among respondents who had watched at least two races on ESPN2 and/or had used the Internet at least once a week to follow the America’s Cup racing. One hundred (100) interviews were conducted during the Louis Vuitton Challenger Series 1/18/00-1/20/00. Two hundred and four (204) interviews were conducted after the conclusion of the finals 3/2/00-3/7/00. The margin of error is no more than + 6.
This week represents one of the biggest and most diverse sporting weeks on the planet!
Last night we had a great kick off with the Super Bowl in Miami as New Orleans took the win over the Indianapolis Colts. Then today launches the start of the Americas Cup race in Valencia, Spain, followed by the Winter Olympic opening ceremony from Vancouver on Friday. Sunday caps off the week with the 52nd running of the Daytona 500 down in Florida.
Does it get any better for sports fan of all types?
Check out the links below for more details about each event:
The 33rd Americas Cup starts Feb. 8th
2010 Winter Olympics live from Vancouver on Feb 12th
52nd Running of the Daytona 500 on Feb.14th
Super Bowl Recap