The BMF says Sir Ben Ainslie's America's Cup team could promote sporting excellence and innovation in the British marine industry

The British Marine Federation has welcomed Sir Ben Ainslie’s America’s Cup team announcement, saying the project will promote sporting excellence and innovation in the marine industry.

Howard Pridding, chief executive of the British Marine Federation said today: ‘We wholeheartedly welcome today’s announcement that Sir Ben Ainslie will be launching a bid for the America’s Cup.

‘The British Marine Federation will be delighted to help him in any way we can with this ambition.

‘This is fantastic news, not just in terms of sporting excellence but also because of the strong links there will be between this bid and innovation and technology in the British marine industry. We already have many world beating companies in the UK leisure marine sector and we are a major manufacturing and sports succes story.

‘An America’s Cup bid will be at the leading edge of marine technology and there are major opportunities for this to be a catalyst for innovation, jobs and skills across the sector. This would give us a competitive advantage in a similar way to the impact of Formula One on the broader UK automotive sector.

‘The fact that the bid may be based on the south coast will be a major boost to the Solent area and will help in terms of local jobs, skills and regeneration.

‘We wish Sir Ben every success in his bid.’

On Tuesday, Ainslie launched his £80million bid to

win the America’s Cup, the 163-year old trophy never won by Great

Britain.

The event took place at the Royal Museums Greenwich

and was attended by the Duchess of Cambridge.

Ainslie said his preferred location for his Ben Ainslie Racing team’s base was Portsmouth, a planning application had been submitted and the team was awaiting the outcome.

Picture: Sir Ben Ainslie with the America’s Cup. Credit: Lloyd Images