New Lawyers Will Make AC33 “The Greatest Event Ever in the History of Sailing.” 1


A penchant for crusading litigation? Cartoon from Alinghi.com

A penchant for crusading litigation? Cartoon from Alinghi.com

For those of you who haven’t ever seen the Alinghi ‘cartoons’ you are missing one of the quirkiest communications gimicks of any America’s Cup team ever. Often completely baffling to an outsider, these little PR missiles are a reminder of the difference between the Swiss and American teams. This week’s cartoon refers to a reported incident in which a BMW ORACLE Rib allegedly had a close call with a local fisherman while “spying” on the Alinghi sea trials.

Normally such a thing would be thrown on the ever mounting pile of irrelevency surrounding the 33rd Edition of the once glorious event, but new reports suggest that the GGYC’s thirst for litigation is far from quenched. Several sources have reported that David Boies, once retained by Emirates Team New Zealand, has joined the Golden Gate YC legal team.

Tom Ehman, fresh from acting as happy shiny master of ceremonies at the BMW ORACLE ‘special event’ in San Diego is back to his ‘worst rules in history’ speech saying:

There continue to be serious issues with the way Société Nautique de Genève is conducting their stewardship as Trustee of the oldest trophy in sports, and the way Alinghi have mounted their defense of the America’s Cup – from Day 1 when they tried to issue rules that were widely condemned as ‘the worst … in the history of the America’s Cup’ to their recent issuance of measurement regulations that would disqualify our boat if left to stand.

Of course BMW ORACLE and GGYC are not out for themselves. This is a much higher calling, the reputation of the cup and the whole sport of sailing is at risk if the legal crusaders fail. Ehman continues:

‘That is why attorney David Boies and his firm Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP have joined with our current legal team – to protect our competitive interests, the interests of sailing, and of the Cup itself. BSF’s reputation, legal acumen and track record are exemplary.

Despite the New York courts ruling that the all powerful Deed of Gift gives the Defender rights to do pretty much whatever they like, the American team want it to be more fair.

And if the crack team of legal brains can use up all the money that could have been spent on R&D to find a solution that BMW ORACLE and GGYC are happy with, they are going to have a great time at a wonderful event where everything is rosey… presumably valencia sunset rosey.

In fact Ehman is confident that this will be the pinnacle of the sport for all time saying:

‘We remain excited about sailing for the 33rd America’s Cup in February 2010. We want this to be the greatest event ever in the history of sailing, and are continuing our preparations to make this happen – even as we continue our fight for fair rules.’