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City excitement builds for debut of ‘Chicago’s Skyline Stadium’ United States Sail Grand Prix at Navy Pier

CHICAGO - May 9, 2022 - In just over five weeks, nine identical F50 catamarans – SailGP’s hydro-foiling race boats that fly over the water while sailing at 60+ mph speeds, will take over Lake Michigan in “Chicago’s Skyline Stadium,” (between Navy Pier and the Adler Planetarium),  for the United States Sail Grand Prix at Navy Pier, June 18-19, 2022. 

SailGP is one of the fastest emerging sports properties in the world, featuring national teams comprising the best athletes in the sport representing the United States, Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, Great Britain, Japan, New Zealand, Spain, and Switzerland. Chicago marks the first time the global championship will race on fresh water.  

On Monday, May 9, SailGP and event partners Navy Pier and the Chicago Sports Commission treated media and VIP guests to a preview of what’s to come, including an on-water race course tour. Click here for Chicago Preview video.

SailGP CEO Sir Russell Coutts said: “Chicago’s reputation as an incredible sports city is second to none and we cannot wait to bring the most exciting racing on-water to the skyline racecourse in front of Navy Pier. SailGP’s close-to-shore action has thrilled fans around the world and we couldn’t think of a better venue to further our expansion in North America.”

Navy Pier will be the central race village for the spectator-focused racing including multi-level ticketed viewing areas, live music, DJs, premium food and beverage experiences, fan shops, and fireworks. Additional “bring your own boat” packages are available, plus exclusive F50 and athlete encounters and the city’s #1 tailgate party (details coming soon). TIckets are on sale now at SailGP.com/Chicago and NavyPier.org

Navy Pier President & CEO Marilynn Gardner said: “Looking out over Lake Michigan, it’s easy to see why Navy Pier is the perfect location for this global event. After all, the Great Lakes are our connection to the world, and Navy Pier has a front-row seat to watch the action on Chicago’s Skyline Stadium.”

U.S. SailGP Team athlete Rome Kirby has raced in Chicago many times, one of which was back in 2016 during the America’s Cup World Series. “Chicago is ready-made to host grand prix style racing,” Kirby said. “Lake Michigan is a natural arena, and it’s incredible to see and hear the crowds cheering from on shore and on water. It’s so motivating to have the hometown crowd support and we are hoping to bring home a win for USA here in Chicago.” 

The U.S. Sail Grand Prix Chicago at Navy Pier will be the second event in Season 3 – an 11-event championship that spans 2022 and first half of 2023 – and is part of a two-year hosting agreement between SailGP and the city to bring the world’s most exciting on-water racing to the Midwest.

“We are thrilled to be part of SailGP’s global championship for Season 3. Chicago has the best sports fans in the world, and we’ve been waiting for the right opportunity to welcome back major international sailing to Chicago,” said Executive Director of the Chicago Sports Commission, Kara Bachman. “Lake Michigan and Chicago’s iconic skyline set an incredible backdrop for the world’s best sailors to compete.”

Tickets are on sale now at SailGP.com/Chicago and NavyPier.org

 

ABOUT NAVY PIER  // Located on Lake Michigan, Navy Pier is the top nonprofit tourism destination in the Midwest, stretching more than six city blocks and typically welcoming nearly 9 million annual guests. Originally opened in 1916 as a shipping and recreation facility, this Chicago landmark showcases more than 50 acres of parks, restaurants, attractions, retail shops, sightseeing and dining cruise boats, exposition facilities and more. The Pier celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2016 with the unveiling of the iconic Centennial Wheel, Polk Bros Park, Fifth Third Bank Family Pavilion and Peoples Energy Welcome Pavilion. In 2021, Navy Pier continued to usher in its second century with ongoing Pier-wide redevelopment efforts—including Sable, a 223-room Hilton hotel, new restaurants and partnerships, and thrilling additions to Pier Park. The Pier is also proud to continue providing free, year-round arts and cultural programming designed to inspire, educate and connect communities across the city and globe. Click here to donate to Navy Pier, a mission-driven 501(c)(3) organization, in support of the organization’s post-pandemic revival and free public programming. For more information, visit www.navypier.org. 

ABOUT SAILGP // SailGP races for a better future, championing a world powered by nature. The world’s most exciting race on water, SailGP features national teams battling in short, intense races at iconic stadium-style venues across the globe, building to the grand final – and sailing’s top prize of $1 million. The high-tech, high-speed action features sailing’s best athletes racing in identical hydro foiling F50 catamarans, flying at speeds exceeding 60mph. Visit SailGP.com for more information.  

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About Navy Pier

More Than You Imagine

Navy Pier is the People’s Pier, Chicago’s lakefront treasure, welcoming all and offering dynamic and eclectic experiences through partnerships and programs that inspire discovery and wonder.

Since its reopening in 1995, more than 180 million guests have come to enjoy the Pier's 50 acres of unparalleled attractions and experiences. In 2021, Navy Pier continues to evolve into an accessible, year-round centerpiece for Chicago’s diverse arts and cultural treasures.


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