No Mutual Consent Over America’s Cup Date. Call the Lawyers. Again.


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Warning. This story is not about sailing. If you are a lawyer, you may find it interesting. If you are a fan of the America’s Cup, then we advise that reading may wear your patience and cause increased blood pressure.

The Golden Gate Yacht Club (GGYC) confirmed yesterday that they are going back to court.  At Golden Gate Yacht Club’s request, the Supreme Court of the State of New York  issued an order directing the defender, Société Nautique de Genève, to show cause why it should not be held in contempt of court.

Apparently, the teams now can’t find any mutual consent about the date that the DOG match should be held. The piece of paper with the rules on it was ammended in 1985 to allow matches to take place in antipodean summer. Alinghi argue that they are just following the DOG like GGYC have been doing all along, but GGYC argue that the court’s judgement overules the DOG.

In other words. The two sides refuse to even consider the idea of Mutual Consent and would instead play their games inside a court room.

Tom Ehman said on behalf of GGYC :

“By forcing litigation over our rightful challenge, they have already managed to delay the match from July 2008 to February 2010. Now they seek another three-month delay, in defiance of the Court’s clear mandate. Enough is enough.”

So is GGYC running scared or trying to keep things moving along. If found guilty, the Swiss will have to agree to the February date, depriving them (and any other challengers) of 3 months of building and testing time.

Just in case you thought this would be the only legal matter left on the table, rumours are bubbling that SNG will be very strict with BMW ORACLE’s interpretation of the rules pertaining to the length of their boat.

Meanwhile, in real sailing news – the iShares Cup and Audi Med Cup are about to get underway, with real boats and real sailors and fans, and tv coverage, and water.