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  • Sir Ben Ainslie and family christen Land Rover BAR America’s Cup race boat ‘Rita’ in Bermuda
  • Land Rover engineers’ expertise has helped design an extremely fast and technically advanced race boat
  • Intensive final preparations and training in battle for the world’s oldest sporting trophy

(BERMUDA) – February 6, 2017 – Land Rover BAR have launched the boat they believe will make sailing history. An extremely fast and technically advanced craft has been developed with Jaguar Land Rover engineers with one aim: to win the world's oldest sporting trophy.

Launched in Bermuda, the boat was named 'Rita' by Sir Ben Ainslie's wife Lady Georgie Ainslie and daughter Bellatrix. The name has a winning pedigree – Sir Ben has used it throughout his career.

BAR shared the engineering skills used by Jaguar Land Rover to create its newest models. Aerodynamic, self-learning car, artificial intelligence and virtual-modeling technologies are all helping the boat to go faster. Jaguar Land Rover
is the UK’s largest investor in automotive research, development and engineering spending billions on new product creation and innovation, the partnership with Land Rover BAR enables the engineers to up-skill and practice new methods in different environment and platforms.

Tony Harper, Director of Research at Jaguar Land Rover, said, “This process of two-way engineering and our wider STEM program across the business has enabled us to develop, learn and provide our capabilities to the BAR team. We developed industry-first aerodynamic testing to support the wingsail design which you can see on the final boat here today. From the success of this project, and with our knowledge of analysis and construction of light-weight vehicles, we have also supported the structural design of the daggerboards – the surfboard-style structure underneath the boat that allow it to fly and keep it stable when out of the water.”

Each light-weight daggerboard needs to bear 5,291lbs, the equivalent of a new Land Rover Discovery model, so their job on the boat is crucial.

Tony Harper added, “It has been an incredible campaign to be involved in as a British automotive brand. We are extremely proud to be supporting Sir Ben Ainslie’s entry into this legendary race.”

Martin Whitmarsh, CEO of Land Rover BAR said, “Jaguar Land Rover’s input to the final boat design has been hugely significant for us. As the relationship grew, so did their level of involvement.

“The America’s Cup has always been a sailing and design race and the boats have developed from ropes and winches to more technical machines which will fly out of the water at up to 60mph. This complex design requires the latest engineering skill and insight, allowing automotive brands to make a significant impact in the design race – very much like in F1.”

Sir Ben Ainslie said, “It’s a great moment to see our race boat Rita hit the water in Bermuda. The launch represents the sum of all the team’s efforts to bring the America’s Cup home, and we’re delighted to get her in the water here in Bermuda. We’re a start-up team, and we had to build not just the boat but the design and engineering team, the facilities and the processes to get to this point today. There are just a few short months before the racing starts at the end of May, and we will be working very hard now on the final development and testing of this boat to make sure we are ready for the racing.”

The team has less than four months to make design tweaks and train on the water in Bermuda.

The America’s Cup begins on May 26, 2017 with the first round of qualifiers. The winner will be crowned at the end of June. Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to watch the event live in Bermuda and more on TV. Land Rover BAR will be up against teams from USA, France, Sweden, New Zealand and Japan.

About Land Rover

Land Rover, the British maker of Land Rover and Range Rover sport utility vehicles, is renowned for providing its clientele with some of the most luxurious and capable vehicles in the world. Every Land Rover vehicle is equally at home both on and off road, and in any setting; be it in the heart of the city, or traversing the countryside. Today's Land Rover lineup includes the Discovery Sport, Range Rover, Range Rover Sport, Range Rover Evoque and LR4 (Discovery 4). Land Rover designs, engineers, and manufactures their vehicles in the United Kingdom. Land Rover is fully engaged with sustainability initiatives and social concerns with continuous involvement in environmental and community programs. For more information visit the official Land Rover website at

About Jaguar Land Rover

– The United States is one of the leading global markets for both Jaguar and Land Rover

Jaguar Land Rover employs 32,000 people and sells vehicles in 170 countries around the world

Jaguar Land Rover has two state of the art engineering and design facilities and four advanced manufacturing plants in the UK

Headquartered in Mahwah, New Jersey in the United States, Jaguar Land Rover North America, LLC has offices across the USA

Jaguar Land Rover is represented by more than 330 independently operated retail outlets in the USA

About Land Rover BAR

Sarah Alexander, Land Rover BAR Press Officer t. +44 7766 391 276 / +44 1489 587 838

Ben Ainslie Racing (BAR) was launched on June 10th 2014 in the presence of Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge. The team was conceived by four times Olympic gold medalist and 34th America's Cup winner, Sir Ben Ainslie, with the long-term aim of challenging for Britain and bringing the America's Cup back home to where it all began in 1851. Ben has developed and will lead a British entry capable of winning the prestigious trophy, something Britain has so far never managed to achieve.

Land Rover BAR is a commercial sporting team, with a number of individual private investors alongside corporate partners. The team is made up of some of the best British and international sailors, designers, builders and racing support.

Sports teams represent key role models in society. This privileged position is not taken for granted at Land Rover BAR. The team believe our influence should extend far beyond the race course, and have put sustainability at the heart of operations since launching the team with Exclusive Sustainability Partner 11th Hour Racing in 2014.

The 1851 Trust is the team's official charity, and HRH The Duchess of Cambridge is its Royal Patron.

Portsmouth will host a second Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series event on 21st-24th July 2016. #BringTheCupHome

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