Sailmaker North Sails, the official clothing provider for the 36th America’s Cup sponsored by Prada, released a fresh batch of gear ahead of the 2021 race.
To be honest, no, this is not really Prada — the fashion house clearly sponsors the competition and has little interest in the North Sails manufacturing process — and yes, some of the bits pack a little too much of Dad-scooping-beers-with-the-boys-at-the-golf-clubhouse charm, but overall, it’s not half bad. There are some neat technical jackets showcasing GORE-TEX technology; lightweight tees that fit both for fitness and knocking, and a mandatory dad’s cap that can be worn ironically if you’re still trapped in 2018. It’s inexpensive, strong enough material from a label that’s been trying to do the right thing towards the planet, with over 20 million plastic bottles being used during the manufacturing process.
North Sails has been providing sails to the America’s Cup for decades, but this competition marks the first attempt at clothing production. Prada has sponsored the Italian outfit Luna Rossa (whose own merchandise is worth a gander) since its establishment in 1997, which ultimately led to the Linea Rossa sub-line. Louis Vuitton has been the naming rights sponsor of the challenger series since 1980, but was replaced by his design competitor in 2018.