The America’s Cup Is To Be Held In Italy. Maybe.

We can’t identify who called Latitude yesterday morning with the report, but a normally reliable source extremely close to the ultimate decision-maker for the site of the next America’s Cup says that Larry Ellison of BMW Oracle is about to announce that the next America’s Cup will be held off Italy, not on San Francisco Bay.

The source tells us that a guarantee of half a billion U.S. dollars on the part of somebody or some entity in Italy was one of the deciding factors.

Cap-d’Ail, is certainly presentable enough for an America’s Cup, the Italians are rabid sailors, and Elba is just a short distance away. But we don’t think there is sufficient infrastructure.

Air Italia
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We’ve always thought that there would be Acts around the world — and maybe there still will be — but that the Finals would be held on San Francisco Bay. But if the Finals turn out to be in Italy, remember you read it here first. If our source is wrong, please forget that you read it here.

Portofino has the requisite beauty and ambiance for an America’s Cup, but it’s not much bigger than Ayala Cove, and the beautiful and windy two-lane road from Santa Margharita would turn into a daily parking lot. Not that it isn’t already during the season.

Webb Logg
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Where would in Italy would it be held? Cap-d’Ail, Portofino and Capri are all spectacularly beautiful and would draw fans and the ultra-affluent like flies to a fresh cow pie. But they really don’t have the facilities for all the crowds and mega yachts that would want to be part of the action. As such, if it’s going to be in Italy, we think it would be off either La Spezia, which has plenty of space for bases and is next to romantic Portovenere, or Sardinia. If it’s Italy, we’d guess it would be held at Sardinia.

Chic and romantic Portovenere is just around the corner from the industrial and yachting center of La Spezia. If the Cup went to Italy, this wouldn’t be a bad place to hold it.

Webb Logg
©2010 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Is there any reason to doubt such a report. Sure. For one thing, Larry Ellison needs an extra $500 million for the event like an alcoholic needs another case of beer.

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