Sir Ben Ainslie’s America’s Cup base is a ‘maritime magnet’ says Lymington rib builder

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PORTSMOUTH’S America’s Cup headquarters is a ‘maritime magnet’ that will attract the very best in the industry.

That’s the view of Patrick Byrne, chief executive of Lymington-based boat builder Scorpion Ribs.

He praised the speed at which the state-of-the-art facility was built and believes it is set up to be a centre of maritime excellence.

Speaking at the base, Mr Byrne said: ‘It’s a bit of a miracle considering 18 months ago Ben Ainslie Racing didn’t even have planning permission.

‘From nothing to this, to seeing the first foil America’s Cup World Series boats next week out on the water, is a remarkable achievement.

‘This building is more than just the home of Ben Ainslie and his team trying to bring the America’s Cup home.

‘For me, it’s something quite dramatic.

‘It’s the centre of maritime excellence for the marine industry and it’s a maritime magnet.’

Sir Ben reiterated his team was in for the long haul.

He said: ‘It’s a real statement of intent for us as a sporting team and our future.

‘We don’t just want to be around for the America’s Cup.

‘We want to build a team and a business.

‘This building is impressive, and we need to translate that to how we design and build the boats and perform on the water.’