Arguments Start in New York.

Oral arguments have begun at the New York Court of Appeals. While the principals and Skippers are enjoying the sun in Auckland, the lawyers will be putting the case of SNG and GGYC in New York. On the water, Alinghi won by a second over BMW ORACLE.

This is the statement by Lucien Masmejan, Société Nautique de Genève legal counsel:

“Today’s hearing marked the last step in this long legal journey instigated by the Golden Gate Yacht Club. We are confident that the Court of Appeals will render a final decision which will permit the Defender Alinghi, the legitimate Challenger of Record Club Náutico Español de Vela, and the 17 other challengers from 11 countries to move forward with the 33rd America’s Cup.

It’s finally time to get the America’s Cup back on the water, where victory is pursued and not in the courtroom. We have demonstrated to the court that the America’s Cup community is united through a democratic process that has established rules and has created a new class of race yacht. We expect the Court of Appeals to reaffirm the previous decision that favours an exciting and competitive multi-challenge America’s Cup with 19 competitors in 2009 and 2010, instead of forcing a multi-hull match between just two competitors.”

BMW ORACLE Racing sailing team leaders John Kostecki (USA) and James Spithill (AUS) attended today’s oral arguments before the New York State Court of Appeals, which is expected to rule on the future of the America’s Cup by the end of March. Following the court hearing, Kostecki said,

“Golden Gate and our racing team expect to win. We look forward to a negotiation with SNG for a multi-challenger America’s Cup 33 and getting back on the water as soon as possible.”

If you’ve got nothing better to do, then you can listen to the webcast here: