The America’s Cup Gone to the DOGS.

The Golden Gate Yacht Club (GGYC) and Société Nautique de Genève (SNG) have decided that the next phase of the Americas Cup will be in Multihull ‘monsters’. A meeting today attended by representatives from both sides resulted in an outcome that may have been pre-determined by the recent fixation on the ancient ‘Deed of Gift’ document. ‘Counsel’ attending the meeting from both sides, seem to be afraid to make any decision that is can not be defended in a New York Court, despite the phrase ‘Mutual consent’ seeming to allow the letter of the deed to be overruled.

The GGYC issued a statement saying “that SNG categorically rejected our proposals”. The SNG statement includes the phrase:

SNG expressed its willingness for the challenger selection to be open to other teams and has encouraged GGYC to do so by offering them more time for teams to prepare if necessary. It was also stated that the SNG would be flexible and ready to discuss other terms of the 33rd America’s Cup such as race format, venue or calendar.

So the games continue and everyone is probably worse off. The GGYC statement names a May 2010 date, which under the true letter of the Deed, is ‘illegal’ through an arcane hemisphere distinction.

We’d love to think there was something redeeming in the statements from the two teams today. The best we can hope for is a great race in spectacular multihulls, but we suspect that even that will descend into a grubby, bickering legal squabble.

Alinghi and BMW ORACLE had a chance today to restore the America’s Cup to its traditional position as the pinnacle of the sport of Yacht Racing. Instead, Ernesto Bertarelli and Larry Ellison didn’t even bother to show up and the proposed event threatens to be an irrelevant farce.

The full statement from the GGYC can be read here….

The Statement from SNG can be read here…