Sir Ben Ainslie has told ITV News he was "very impressed" with the Duchess of Cambridge's design knowledge and her support for a British team to take part in the America's Cup.
"She is obviously passionate about British sport, and the America's Cup is something through sailing that is close to her heart ... we're very grateful for that support," the Olympic gold medallist added.
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The profit hike comes despite a mammoth £1.7 billion hit from the payment protection insurance (PPI) mis-selling scandal last year.