Oracle 1 - Alinghi 0

Err…. What did I say on the last post? Hopefully there’s a wi-fi link in case there’s something worth reporting? Well there was - wi-fi and something worth reporting, that is… the Spanish yacht club Club Náutico Español de Vela (CNEV) have been eased from their position as Challenger of Record (COR) by Justice Cahn of the New York State Supreme Court. The new COR is the Golden Gate Yacht Club (GGYC) and Oracle Racing.

The court decision has been posted on the GGYC website, along with the club’s response, in which Oracle CEO, Russell Coutts, expresses a desire for a conventional America’s Cup regatta in Valencia. Their preferences are:

'1) Seek to agree rules with all competitors along the lines of the October 17 “nine points” compromise proposal and race a conventional America’s Cup competition in Valencia in 2009.

2) If a Deed of Gift challenge went ahead, the club would seek to race under the AC90 monohull rule already published. If Alinghi did not agree to that, in multi-hulls.

3) In all scenarios, GGYC would seek by mutual consent to have a Challenger Selection Series with as many challengers as possible. “We will immediately endeavour to meet with the other challengers to mutually agree a fair set of rules negotiated with all the other teams,” Coutts said. “We will be very happy if we can put the last few months behind us and get on with sailing.”'

So, what happens from here? Will Alinghi negotiate on that basis, sail in cats or appeal? Alinghi made a curt statement yesterday that has been filled out in an interview with Brad Butterworth on their website today, the 28th November.

Hard to judge how it’s going to go from that - Brad certainly doesn’t seem to think anything is going to be settled anytime soon. While the two sides didn’t seem that far apart when negotiations broke down a few days ago, we really don’t know how much mud is flying behind the scenes…

Meanwhile, as this is all over every news outlet – sailing and mainstream media – and is hard to miss (unless you're surfing in darkest Cornwall) I’m only going to point you in the direction of three of them, and the first two were kindly provided for me by John Whalen… First the New York Times and then the International Herald Tribune - both are luminaries of the global media, one is rather better than the other…

But for the real deal, I’d suggest you go straight to Cory Friedman, writing for Scuttlebutt – where he explains exactly why GGYC have won, and why the chance of reversal on appeal is unlikely…. It’s all to do with the word ‘having’ - and it means that you need to have had an annual regatta on an arm of the sea, as well as going to have one….

Whoever said precise grammar wasn’t important?

Mark Chisnell ©