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EDHEC Lille wins Left Bank Bordeaux Cup

French business school EDHEC Lille has won the final of the 13th Left Bank Bordeaux Cup, with Oxford University second and Skema Business School, also based in France, coming third.

EDHEC’s winning team (l-r): Lorenzo Fontana Giusti, Alexandre Lambert, Baphise Bonhomme, Octave Letellier

EDHEC Lille’s student team were crowned champions in a tense final held at Chateau Lafite Rothschild in Pauillac last night (26 June).

More than 40 teams of university and business school students from around the world began the heats for the 2014 competition in January, making it one of the largest amateur wine competitions in the world.

Eight teams reached the final of the competition, organised by the Commanderie du Bontemps de Médoc, Graves, Sauternes and Barsac, and sponsored by Decanter. Of the eight finalists, two were from Asia, two from the United States, two from France, and two from the rest of Europe.

‘This year has been our most international to date,’ Commanderie de Bontemps president Emmanuel Cruse told decanter.com. ‘We had eight different universities competing in the regional heats for Hong Kong alone, as well as teams competing in Singapore, Korea and mainland China. We are hoping to attract teams from Japan also in the future’.

The finals take place over four rounds – one theory and three practical tasting rounds, with questions ranging from identifying how many 1855 3rd growths there are in Pauillac to placing a range of wines in order from oldest to youngest.

The winning French team – the second success for EDHEC Lille in three years – had organised tasting sessions at the historic Caves Legrand cellars in Paris, as well as background seminars with Alexandre de Lur Saluces, who previously ran Chateau d’Yquem and is a graduate of the business school.

‘We worked hard on the preparation,’ said team member Alexandre Lambert, ‘but we also enjoyed the preparation, and are very proud to have won tonight’.

And advice for the prospective competitors for next year? ‘Taste, taste and taste again,’ said Baron Eric de Rothschild, ‘because the standard is so high’.

Final placings in the 2014 Left Bank Bordeaux Cup:
(1) EDHEC France
(2) Oxford University, UK
(3) SKEMA Business School, France
(4) Chinese University Hong Kong
(4) Nanyang University, Singapore
(4) NYU Stern, USA
(5) Copenhagen Business School, Denmark
(5) Yale Law School, USA

Written by Jane Anson in Bordeaux

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