Aer Lingus, in partnership with the GAA and GPA, has unveiled a one-of-a-kind customised playing kit for the Fenway Hurling Classic which takes place at Fenway Park in Boston on November 18th.
Aer Lingus is the Official Airline of the event and the principal sponsor for 2018 with AIG stepping back from the event having been there last year when Dublin were involved.
There are a number of unique features about the jerseys with the GAA and GPA joint crest replacing the regular GAA one on the right side of the jersey, and the Aer Lingus logo appearing on the sleeve.
This year’s event will once again be the centrepiece of a significant Festival of all things Irish around Fenway Park and Boston.
There could be a major extra buzz around the ground as well with the Boston Red Sox making it to the World Series in the early hours of this morning. Game One in that series takes place next Tuesday against either the LA Dodgers or the Milwaukee Brewers with the final game of seven on Halloween.
The Irish Rugby team played in Chicago after the Cubs won the Series two years ago. If this is a repeat Irish sporting stars will be seen as a lucky charm for one of the most storied and important of American sporting stories.
All Ireland Champions Limerick will take on reigning champions Clare before Cork and Wexford face each other in the Super 11’s format. The two semi-finals will each last 40 minutes with the winners proceeding to the final on the same day, Sunday, November 18th.
Aer Lingus will once again be the Official Airline of the event and will be responsible for flying the four teams to Boston. The airline provides another connection to Soldier Field having been the official airline to Irish Rugby. It has been involved in the two previous occasions that hurling has been played at Fenway Park in 2015 and 2017.
“We are committed to flying a party of 140 players, coaches and officials and are really looking forward to helping them fly the flag in Boston, said Aer Lingus Director of Communications Ruth Ranson speaking to Sport for Business last night.
“It was great to get a first look at the jerseys today and we’re delighted to see the Aer Lingus logo featured on the sleeve.”
“North America is a huge market for us with flights to 13 destinations in the US and two more in Canada. At present we have two per cent of the total market for passengers flying between America and Europe and there is room yet for significant growth.”
“Our dedicated marketing team on the ground in the US will be very active around the time of the Fenway Hurling Classic and CEO Stephen Kavanagh will be speaking at a special lunch being organised by the Gaelic Players Association in Boston around the games.”
“Fenway Park saw 30,000 fans attend last time and who knows how much excitement there will be for sport if the Red Sox have done well in the World Series.”
“Our support of the Fenway Hurling Classic gives Aer Lingus the unique opportunity to stand out in one of our most prominent US cities. Boston is a hugely popular destination for us on both sides of the pond and we look forward to welcoming the four squads on board in November.”
“Super 11s Hurling has been an opportunity for trying new innovations on and off the pitch since 2013,” added GPA CEO Paul Flynn who himself worked for Aer Lingus in the earlier days of his inter-county career with Dublin.
“By its nature Super 11s is innovative but there have also been a series of other experiments and changes. These unique jerseys are another sign of the willingness of both the GAA and GPA to work together to advance our games.”
“We’d like to thank Aer Lingus, who we are delighted to have as the Official Airline of the event, for all their support and for enabling us to showcase the art of hurling to a wider audience as well as providing a conduit to strengthen our business, sporting and cultural ties with the city of Boston and Ireland-US relations in general.”
“A final mention to our players, who continue to be great ambassadors for our games both here and internationally and who are no doubt relishing the opportunity to display their skills in one of the most iconic sports stadiums in the world.”
All three games will be broadcast live on TG4 and GAAGO.
Watch out on Sport for Business next week when we expect more news of a further link between Aer Lingus and a major sporting event to take place in 2019…
Image Credit: Sam Barnes, Sportsfile