Joe Yogerst 2016-06-09 00:56:00
The Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series brings a fleet of state-of-the-art sailing vessels to Chicago this summer. A slew of sailors will descend on the Windy City this summer in hopes of earning a place at the 2017 America’s Cup in Bermuda, a prestigious yacht race that has taken place since 1851. The Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series Chicago, slated for June 10-12, will see six teams compete for the chance to contend against defending champion Oracle Team USA at the final event in Bermuda; it takes place June 17-18 and 24-27, 2017, with qualifiers and playoff s running May 26 to June 12. This is the first time an America’s Cup event is being staged on a freshwater venue, as the starting and finish lines for the Chicago races are directly off Navy Pier. The teams will be racing identical, state-of-the-art catamarans from the AC45 class, all of which are a simpler version of the slightly larger boats to be used for the America’s Cup in Bermuda. “The main difference between the America’s Cup boats from 2013 and what we will be racing in Chicago is the addition of an L-shaped hydrofoil to replace the straight dagger foil we had before,” says naval architect Scott Ferguson, who designed the World Series catamarans along with his team of about 18 designers. This allows for a significant increase in speed. Based on what Ferguson’s team members learn about the technology during the qualifying series, they will then design the final additions for the catamarans to be raced in the America’s Cup next year. Ahead of the race, here’s a look at the high-tech features hitting the water in the Windy City. Explore Chicago America’s Cup attendees can experience the best the city has to offer before and after each race. EAT Indulge in Executive Chef Luigi Garcia’s classic surf and turf menu at RIVA CRAB HOUSE, located near the World Series course and race village. (700 E. Grand Ave.; 312-644-7482; rivanavypier.com) DRINK Order a craft beer, cocktail or premium scotch on the rocks at THE SIGNATURE LOUNGE on the 96th fl oor of the John Hancock Center; it boasts a view that can stretch across the lake to Michigan. (875 N. Michigan Ave.; 312-787- 9596; signatureroom.com) PLAY GRANT PARK is 319 acres of sprawling property just south of Navy Pier. “Chicago’s Front Yard” is home to the Art Institute of Chicago and Field Museum of Natural History. (337 E. Randolph St.; 312- 742-3918; chicagoparkdistrict.com)
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