Sailing: SailGP pulls out of Auckland event after spectator vantagepoint falls through

Coldplay fans have emerged as the big winners from SailGP's decision to not race in Auckland next year.

Racing was scheduled to play out on the waters of the Waitematā Harbour in March, but a breakdown in spectator viewing locations has led to SailGP pulling out.

Tātaki Auckland Unlimited chief executive Nick Hill says it worked hard with the company to explore all possible options to stage the event here, including the development of the on-water course and on-land seating plans.

"However, the unavailability of Wynyard Point land as a spectator facility proved to be a barrier to holding the event in Auckland," Hill said.

The landing viewing area was part of SailGP's original vision for sailing.

Coldplay singer Chris Martin and SailGP.
Coldplay singer Chris Martin and SailGP. Photo credit: Getty Images/Photosport

Thousands of spectators turned out earlier this year for the innagural New Zealand event at Christchurch's Lyttelton Harbour.

Hill says Auckland remains a world-class destination for major events and it prides itself on its international reputation for hosting global events. 

He confirms the funding intended for the SailGP event could now be channeled into other attractions.

"There's plenty of demand and ideas on how we might use that over the next 12 months," said Hill. "For example, the Coldplay announcement over the weekend is because we've got a bit more funding now to support them coming here."

British pop group Coldplay will perform at Eden Park next November, as part of their Music of the Spheres world tour - their first visit since 2016.

Meanwhile, SailGP is exploring other options, including a return to Christchurch.

SailGP continues to work with its partners, including the relevant local and central government agencies, to progress planning for its season four New Zealand event," it said.

"We will share more information as soon as it is available."