by Russell Coutts
Valencia is the best option to get the America's Cup back on track as soon as possible. This is what sailing fans from around the world are waiting for.
Both BMW ORACLE Racing and Alinghi still have bases in the Port America's Cup. The infrastructure created to the specification of the Swiss defender is in place, available and ready to recreate the atmosphere of the previous America's Cup in 2007.
Last week Cristobal Grau, Director of Sport for Valencia City, said it would only take a few weeks to have Valencia back in action. Today the Mayor of Valencia, Rita Barbera, said her city would welcome the Cup back with open arms.
In her ruling at the New York Supreme Court on Tuesday, Justice Shirley Kornreich confirmed the primacy of the governing Deed of Gift document for the America's Cup. This means that Société Nautique de Genève (SNG) must choose a Deed-compliant location. Although Valencia is in the Northern Hemisphere, it is possible to hold the 33rd Match there in February because both SNG and Golden Gate Yacht Club (GGYC) had agreed to it by mutual consent.
Were SNG to propose a location in the Southern Hemisphere instead of Valencia, we ask the defender to name it as soon as possible so that we have the maximum opportunity to make an informed assessment. We say this noting that nearly three months of the court-ordered six month minimum notice period for the venue has gone already.
We again confirm our willingness to sit down immediately with SNG/Alinghi for talks to resolve the outstanding issues surrounding the 33rd America's Cup.
There is no reason why SNG should not ask the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) to appoint an independent, neutral jury with the usual duties and powers of an international sailing jury, and to do this immediately. In that way any future disputes involving sailing rules and related issues could be referred to the jury instead of needing to go back before the court.
GGYC and BMW ORACLE Racing are eager to race in the Match, starting on 8 February 2010. Our BOR 90 is back in the water in San Diego, more refined than ever and there are further technical developments in the pipeline that we are very excited about.
Golden Gate Yacht Club
BMW ORACLE Racing