SEAHORSE: Following in the footsteps of other industry titans, Ferrari’s chairman John Elkann said Wednesday that the automotive behemoth, also home to the namesake luxury fashion brand and Formula 1 racing team, is venturing into sailing.
“We are about to embrace an exciting journey set to expand our racing soul,” said Elkann. “Through this new competitive challenge, spurred by our innovative prowess and commitment to sustainability, we will push current boundaries,” he added.
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Ferrari has conscripted Giovanni Soldini as team principal for its sailing project. A consummate seaman, Soldini has a strong track record in ocean sailing and in the development of innovative technologies and trims for racing yachts, boasting a 30-year career.
“We are happy to be able to rely on Giovannni [Soldini], an extraordinary [man] for his experience, determination and team spirit,” Elkann said.
A time frame for the first fruits of the venture to materialize was not provided.
“I am excited to be kicking off a new adventure with Ferrari. We are working an important and forward-looking project with an astonishing technological potential combining different worlds and cutting-edge know-how,” Soldini offered. “To be able to take part in research and development of innovative solutions, respectful of our planet, and with an exceptional team is truly a unique experience,” he said.
Known for its prancing horse emblem, luxury sports cars and the Formula 1 namesake racing team, Ferrari’s move further diversifies the business, which also has a fashion brand, designed by creative director Rocco Iannone, in 2019.
Luxury players have traditionally linked with the world of sailing, from Prada with its Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli team, Louis Vuitton as the title partner of the America’s Cup, and Puig becoming the global partner of the 37th America’s Cup and the official naming partner of the inaugural Women’s America’s Cup. Loro Piana was the official sponsor of last year’s IMA Maxi European Championship in which its chairman and member of the founding family Pier Luigi Loro Piana competed with his My Song 5 sailboat.
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