Challenger Round Table Pushes On.


Which ever side of the “is CNEV a real challenger” debate you are on, you’d have to think that the plans for the 33rd Edition of the Americas Cup, dubbed by BMW Oracle’s spin merchants as the ‘Alinghi Cup’, would make for a fantastic event. Even the Bertarelli haters should admit, that any agreement between the people around this table have the talent to create the best big boat match racing regatta ever staged.

That the press release is sent out by Alinghi will do nothing to convince those on the other side that this is not some dark Bertarelli plot, but the more meetings they have, the more momentum they get, the more exciting it seems. It is also positive – not just constant whining.

The statement issued yesterday reads:

After considering various options, talks over the past two days between Alinghi, the Defender of the America’s Cup, Club Náutico Español de Vela (CNEV), the Challenger of Record, and the rest of the challengers have resulted in a firm commitment for the Challenger Selection Series and the 33rd America’s Cup Match to take place in 2010 in the new class of boat currently under development by the group and due to be made public on 31 January.

The group also decided that the two pre-regattas scheduled for 2009 are to be compulsory for all entered teams, regardless of the expected court decision in New York.

The Defender informed the group that negotiations with the Spanish authorities to confirm Valencia as Host City are well advanced and should progress further at an upcoming meeting with the Central Government in Madrid.

Grant Simmer, Alinghi design team coordinator, commented: “The general comment among the teams is that we are progressing well in the working process towards defining the terms and rules for a multi-challenger 33rd America’s Cup. We all think that we should agree as many details as we can on the event in 2010 and on the pre-regattas for 2009 and try to reduce the number of uncertainties. If the existing court decision which ruled CNEV valid is confirmed by the Court of Appeals, the plans are in place and we can quickly move forward.”

The event is still cloaked in the uncertainty caused by the Golden Gate Yacht Club’ and BMW Oracle Racing’s ongoing litigation in New York, but the entered teams have once again demonstrated their will to continue with ongoing preparations.

The next round of 33rd America’s Cup Competitor Meetings will take place in Valencia in March.

The teams present at the meetings were: 

The teams present at the meetings were: Alinghi (SUI), Desafío Español (ESP), Shosholoza (RSA), TeamOrigin (GBR), Team New Zealand (NZL), DCYC (GER), Green Comm Challenge (ITA), Ayre Challenge (ESP), Victory Challenge (SWE), Argo Challenge (ITA), Mascalzone Latino (ITA), Team French Spirit (FRA), Luna Rossa (ITA), Russian Challenge (RUS), Italia (ITA), K-Challenge (FRA), Greek Challenge (GRE) and Dabliu Sail Project (ITA).