Team Alinghi, the Swiss sailing team co-sponsored by Swiss luxury watch Audemars Piguet, on March 2 became the first European challenger in 152 years to win the America’s Cup race, sailing’s oldest and most prestigious event and prize. The Swiss defeated defending champion Team New Zealand 5 to 0 in the best-of-nine series. The Swiss challenger’s crew raised a broom at the end, reported CNN, symbolizing their clean sweep of the series. They’re also the first team to win the America’s Cup on the first attempt.
In a statement headlined, “We Did It!” Audemars Piguet said it is “proud to have been part of this exceptional human and sporting adventure.” The brand’s co-sponsorship of the Swiss team had marked its long association with sailing and the America’s Cup event and also was an opportunity to spotlight the 30th anniversary of the Royal Oak, the first high-end steel sports watch. In the past year, the Swiss luxury watch brand launched two Royal Oak watches: the pink gold Royal Oak City of Sails chronograph, with an hour counter adorned with the Alinghi logo; and the Dual Time Royal Oak Offshore Alinghi, the commemorative edition for the America’s Cup 2003. In addition, the Alinghi sailboat is featured in the watch brand’s international advertising campaign. Audemars Piguet is the oldest haute horlogerie watchmaker still in the hands of its founding families and boasts a record number of world firsts in terms of complex watch mechanisms.