The boats of the Defender and Challenger for the 33rd America’s Cup are in the same place for the first time. Alinghi 5 and BMW ORACLE’s BOR 90 have been unloaded from ships in Valencia’s commercial port. The fighting is still not over, with more carefully worded letters being exchanged and more meetings to take place to try and resolve differences that still exist between the two teams.
One of the outstanding issues to work out is where the American boat will be moored. The immense size of its wing provides some unique logistical issues that were not part of the brief when the Dársena was designed for version 5 America’s Cup boats. Alinghi’s statement yesterday, mindful of the problems that mooring in the Dársena would cause the challenger said:
“We hope that the people of Valencia will be excited to witness the arrival and preparation of our catamaran. We understand the American challenger has also arrived to Valencia and hopefully both boats will be moored in the Dársena and will provide a great spectacle. Since these new yachts are so fast and the racing will take place a long way offshore viewing the yachts from the water will be difficult for the fans, the sponsors and the media; that is why we think the Dársena will form an important arena for this event.”
As well as issuing a press release about the arrival of The Oceanlady transporting approximately 200 tonnes of equipment, the Golden Gate Yacht Club also released a letter to SNG that outlined the remaining issues preventing racing. GGYC are prepared to meet with SNG on January 12th in Singapore with David Tillet, Chairman of the International Jury in attendence. The letter also says that BMW ORACLE will not be pressured into mooring in the Dársena citing safety concerns for crew and fans.
So the show, if and when it happens won’t be much of a show, unless you are watching it on TV (If you can find it on TV), or sitting in a helicopter seat above the course, but if you really want to be in Valencia in February, there are hundreds of spare hotel rooms still available.