America’s Cup family loses a giant

Yves Carcelle, Louis Vuitton.
© Gilles Martin-Raget

Yves Carcelle, a long-time friend and supporter of the America’s Cup has passed away.

The Chairman and CEO of Louis Vuitton from 1990-2012, Yves Carcelle was a stalwart supporter of the company’s title partnership of the Louis Vuitton Cup challenger series.

But more than that, Mr. Carcelle enjoyed a personal relationship with the event, the sailors, the media; the full America’s Cup family.

In the build up to the 34th America’s Cup, he visited San Diego for the America’s Cup World Series in 2011, and sailed on one of the AC45 wing-sail catamarans. Afterward, he spoke passionately about the America’s Cup:

“We are nearly twins, the America’s Cup and Louis Vuitton, both having been created in the 1850s. In 1983 Louis Vuitton became involved by organizing the challengers' competition, what we now call the Louis Vuitton Cup, and since then we have always been there, a part of this story,” he said.

“The America’s Cup is very special. It’s the oldest sporting trophy in the world. There is no equivalent. Nowhere else do you see people give three years of their lives, their reputations, and their money to have a chance of possessing this precious piece of silver for what is sure to be a short period of time. It speaks to ambition and drive and motivation. It’s a very unique trophy and I understand why so many people compete for so long to take this prize.”

Yves Carcelle is a Chevalier of the French Legion of Honor and, in a reflection of what he has meant to that country through his work on the America’s Cup, an Honorary Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

The America’s Cup family passes along its sincere condolences to the friends and family of Mr. Yves Carcelle.

We are honored to have known him and to have had his support for so many years. He will be missed.