Friday, 21 December 2007

The Afterguard: Wishing Our Readers A Very Merry Christmas

The Afterguard would like to take this opportunity to wish all our readers a very Merry Christmas and a happy and peaceful 2008.

To those at sea throughout the festive season we wish safe passage.

To the crews and shore crews of America's Cup teams we wish a successful and positive New Year. In particular, we hope the fortunes of all involved with TEAMORIGIN take a beneficial turn in the year ahead.

To the protagonists responsible for the mess they've left the cup in, we hope they'll take a little time over the holiday season to reflect on their actions in recent months, and perhaps strive to do a little more for the common good as we move into the new year.

We remain hopeful for the opportunity to return in 2008 and cover America's Cup sporting activity, once and for all to banish the bitter after-taste of apparent America's Cup malfeasance we've all suffered recently. Let's hope we'll soon remember 2007 for the excellent 32nd America's Cup alone.

Peace and goodwill to all.

Image: Art by Alan Giana.

Tuesday, 18 December 2007

The Afterguard: TEAMORIGIN Batten Down The Hatches

TEAMORIGIN this afternoon acknowledged that no multiple-challenger America's Cup competition is likely to take place before 2011.

Careful to temper language when reflecting on the shambolic state of mismanagement that the America's Cup is in, there is little doubting the disappointment behind the team principle's pledge to try to keep TEAMORIGIN together over the next four years.

Having witnessed the effort that has gone into generating the cohesion and ambition driving all members of TEAMORIGIN, The Afterguard wishes to extend its best wishes to all concerned for the future.

The team's latest release (here) reproduced in full:

TEAMORIGIN Aims For 2011

TEAMORIGIN, Britain’s Challenge for the America’s Cup, is modifying its plans to aim for competition in 2011. Originally planned for 2009 this date is now seen as the most likely date for an America’s Cup event with multiple challengers.

“Over the past 12 months Team Director Mike Sanderson and I have assembled what we believe to be an incredibly strong team in TEAMORIGIN. Today that team is made up of over 100 people and numbers amongst them the best sailors, designers and shore side management in the business. With the work accomplished so far we were on track to race the new AC90 class competitively for the America’s Cup in 2009. However, our assessment now is that a 2009 America’s Cup Match that TEAMORIGIN could compete in is extremely unlikely and that 2011 is now the most likely timing for the next America’s Cup with multiple challengers,” explained Team Principal Sir Keith Mills.

Certain members of the team have less of a rush on their hands now in terms of getting racing yachts ready for a competition in Valencia originally scheduled for 18 months from now.

“Up until today the design team, run by Juan Kouyoumdjian, Andy Claughton and Mickey Ickert, had been working flat out to design the first of the team’s AC-90 yachts.
TEAMORIGIN’s shore crew and boat builders had been making all arrangements to build this boat in time for a June 2008 launch in Valencia. We now see a longer period ahead of us before a race-ready yacht is required and so have taken this opportunity to change our approach. To keep these original plans in place now would be wasteful and as a result TEAMORIGIN is lowering its current level of activity and re-focusing on planning for a 2011 event. The team is however always prepared for any eventuality and it has the flexibility to quickly escalate the programme and plans in case the America’s Cup situation changes again,” said Team Director Mike Sanderson.

When Sir Keith Mills first announced his intentions to challenge for the America’s Cup 11 months ago it was without knowing the dates, venue or format of the first event a British team could race in. Although initially expecting to be able to race in the 33rd America’s Cup, announced in July of this year to be run in 2009, the ongoing litigation between the Swiss Defender and San Francisco’s Golden Gate Yacht Club has brought into question the dates and format of the next event.

“The greatest thing that I found have about TEAMORIGIN during its formative months has been the spirit in which a really strong and competitive team has been created. We have an incredible array of motivated talent in this team, people who want to do this for the right reasons. Although, through lack of an event, we have to slow down now in our preparations I know that when the time comes this team will regroup and come out even stronger,” said TEAMORIGIN’s skipper Ben Ainslie OBE.

“I remain totally committed to the America’s Cup and to maintaining the competitive advantage that TEAMORIGIN has built,” continued Sir Keith. “But I am extremely frustrated and disappointed about the current state of affairs. What we need is clarity and I urge the Defender and Challenger of Record to reach an agreement that provides the prospective challengers like TEAMORIGIN with the certainty they need to plan future campaigns.”

“My principal goal now is to keep TEAMORIGIN together so as to be able to compete for the America’s Cup at some time in the future. Without any certainty today as to when, where and how that will be I am reluctantly forced to slow things down and stand the team down from full operational mode,” concluded Sir Keith.


The Afterguard: The Deafening Sound Of Silence

Alive & well, The Afterguard remains silent for good reason.

We at The Afterguard are grateful to all who have emailed us over recent weeks to check that all is ok with us and to enquire as to why we have been silent.

To be honest, our initial enthusiasm for the machinations behind the scenes of the America's Cup have turned over recent months to utter contempt for those responsible for turning a once honourable sporting event into a circus whose only currency is greed and arrogance. Such is our disregard for those involved that we'd rather deny the oxygen of publicity to these parties on our pages; there are others who are more eloquent in their reporting of the self-inflicted humiliation being played out - we'll remain silent and maintain a watching brief, ready to return just as soon as sportsmanship is ready to replace selfishness.

Here's to the hope of some sport in 2008.

Monday, 8 October 2007

TEAMORIGIN Get Off To A Winning Start

TEAMORIGIN, Great Britain's entry for the 33rd America's Cup have signalled their intent by winning their first competitive challenge - The Grade 1 ISAF Trapani Cento Cup.

TEAMORIGIN Press Release (8-10-07):

TEAMORIGIN wins Trapani Cento Cup


TEAMORIGIN, Britain’s Challenge for the 33rd America’s Cup, competed at the Trapani Cento Cup, a Grade One ISAF Match Race Regatta in Trapani, Sicily, at the weekend and won.

Against a star-studded line-up of skippers from the last America’s Cup, including the two Danish helmsmen Jes Gram Hansen and Jesper Raddich, the Australian James Spithill and the Italian Paolo Cian, TEAMORIGIN’s Ben Ainslie, Iain Percy, Matt Cornwell and guest Gabriel Bruni competed in and won the 2007 Trapani Cento Cup. Trapani, on the extreme western tip of the Italian island of Sicily, was the site of Acts 8 & 9, a pair of build-up regattas for the last America’s Cup sailed in full size America’s Cup Class yachts in October 2005.

“This was our first international competition sailing together, our team worked well together and developed well as we went through the regatta. Sailing with Iain worked really well from a tactical point of view and this result is an important step forward for us” commented skipper Ben Ainslie.

“The conditions were pretty straight forward for the Round Robin series starting last Thursday, we sailed outside the harbour on open water. For the semis and finals at the weekend however we raced inside Trapani Harbour, which made it very shifty and really called for ‘heads-out-of-the-boat sailing’ to spot the wind,” Ainslie continued.

“Our team seemed to work well together and we won our semi final against Jes Gram Hansen (DEN) and the finals against Paolo Cian (ITA) who had beaten James Spithill (AUS) in their semi final, both 2-0.”


“I am particularly pleased with this regatta not only because the team won, which is great, but because Ben and Iain worked really well together tactically. This is an important signal for TEAMORIGIN’s future. We are a new team with experienced people coming from different backgrounds. This first test of getting this small but important part of the team working together has gone well,” concluded Team Director Mike Sanderson.

--ENDS--

Thursday, 4 October 2007

The Afterguard - 33rd America's Cup In Disarray

The Afterguard turns its back for 5 minutes & the entire world seems to go stark raving mad...

Allegedly, Alinghi's Simon Daubney has tested positive for traces of cocaine, and if true, money's power to corrupt in sport is yet again proven... [Source: NZ Herald]

The billionaire's boys club stage a short-lived love-in (by phone), yet while both parties sound increasingly anxious to avoid the car crash they've both contributed to, they remain on course to inflict mortal wounds not on each other so much, but on the Auld Mug itself. [Source: The Telegraph/GGYC]

ACM survey the rising tide:

ACM to reassess the feasibility of the America’s Cup in Valencia in 2009 03-10-2007

As a consequence of the uncertainty and the delays arising from the Golden Gate Yacht Club Law suit in New York, AC Management (ACM) is concerned that the feasibility of organising the next America’s Cup in Valencia in 2009 has been effectively compromised.

ACM will in the coming days engage in consultations with the Defender, the Challenger of Record, the Competitors and the Spanish Authorities on this specific matter.

ACM is considering all options, including the possibility of postponing the event to a later date.
In the meantime, ACM understands that SNG continues to try to find a resolution of the dispute pending with Golden Gate Yacht Club in New York.
--Ends-- [Source: ACM]

Desafio Español throws itself onto the pyre:

Statement from Desafío Español

Regarding the press release issued today by ACM in which declares its concern about the “the possibility of postponing the event to a later date”, Desafío Español states its unconditional support to the Spanish and Valencian authorities, the Defender and the Organisation of the America’s Cup.

Desafío Español understands that the organisation of a sporting event of this magnitude must be done without haste and under the best consensus atmosphere between all the parties involved.

For this reason, Desafío Español shows its conformity with the proposed conversations between ACM, the Defender, the Challenger of Record, the competitors and the Spanish Authorities in which Desafío Español will participate actively.

Desafío Español also hopes that, as a result of these conversations, the 33rd America’s Cup can be celebrated in the initially proposed dates.

Meanwhile, Desafío Español continues working towards the next edition of the America’s Cup, configuring the structure of the team and developing its plans.
--Ends-- [Source: Desafio Español]

Meanwhile TEAMORIGIN trademark themselves, no doubt praying they get the opportunity to merchandise. [Source: UK Intellectual Property Office]

So with little hope for an America's Cup before 2011, we at The Afterguard are seriously considering crawling back under our stone and enjoying another vacation... of course what all this activity really means is that a resolution will likely be found before the end of the week. Nowt so strange...

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

The Afterguard - Back To The 'Fuxia'

To many of our readers it might seem a simple enough thing to do, but there are days when keeping The Afterguard abreast of happenings in the America's Cup is just plain arduous.

Today, however, isn't one of those days...

Sadly too late to meet our weekend deadline for our interview with Fuxia Challenge's Institutional Relations Director, Paolo Rivelli, we are extremely pleased to have the following statement (reproduced as written) on behalf of Fuxia Challenge's Patroness, the beautiful Ornella Muti:

The Afterguard's loyalty to TEAMORIGIN is sorely tried:
Miss Ornella Muti

Ornella Muti
Photo © 2007 www.ornellamuti.it

"It is wonderful for Miss Muti to partake of this event - It flatters her and she is so happy to be involved - how could she say no to an all-female challenge like this? The colour of the event inspires me!!! She is deeply in love with this project and will be doing everything to be useful to the team"

Saturday, 22 September 2007

The Afterguard Looks To The 'Fuxia'

At the end of August, The Afterguard wrote about Fuxia Challenge in an article entitled 'The Future's Bright, The Future's Fuxia ?!?', and as is often our way, at that time we created more questions than answers...

Having felt we might have been a little too light-hearted in our approach, we ended our piece by reflecting that we had made previous efforts to gain more information from Fuxia Challenge, and asking that if Paolo Rivelli should read our article, would he care to contact us. Paolo has been the sole individual we have noted to be associated with much recent Italian media coverage.

By the wonders of the internet, Paolo has been in touch, and provided us with an English response to a number of our questions. We're grateful to Paolo for struggling with The Afterguard's native tongue - our over reliance on Google translation can render Paolo's melodious language almost incomprehensible!

We began by asking Paolo to explain the background to the team and who was principally concerned with it's formulation:

"The idea of Fuxia Challenge was given birth by Sport Xtension, a firm specialized in the development of creative concepts for the sports industry and a company of which I am CEO."

Sport Xtension Ltd. is a company founded in the UK in July of 2007 [source]


"An international team of marketing, media, finance and sailing experts have worked together to realize this; in the specific this project is born by an intuition of one of the most important & skilful sports & marketing practitioners in Italy, Marcel Vulpis, who is also the President of Fuxia Challenge."

Marcel also appears to have involvement in the Italian website sporteconomy.it [source]

"Our aim is to create an innovative approach to the America’s Cup, that basically will promote greater value for its strategic partners through a specific target audience. Fuxia Challenge will assemble an entirely female team from among the world’s top ranking sailors for the first time ever in America’s Cup history; it will be the Challenge of Marketing to Women, heavily orientated to fashion and glamour."

The Afterguard had noted mention of Italian & internationally famed actress Ornella Muti in a recent Italian press article, and we asked Paolo to explain her involvement with Fuxia challenge.

Never let it be said The Afterguard doesn't serve its audience:
Miss Ornella Muti

Ornella Muti
Photo © 2007 www.ornellamuti.it

"Miss Ornella Muti accepted to be the Patroness of the Fuxia Challenge as she is a strong supporter of efforts to improve the status of all women around the world. Fuxia Challenge will be linked to an international charitable organization that is also engaged in this aim."

We asked Paolo to comment on some of the female sailors being associated with Fuxia Challenge in the Italian press, and he confirmed that those identified were the subject of mere speculation, as are the yacht clubs thus far connected to Fuxia in the media.

"At the moment I cannot confirm any of the statements regarding the team's members currently signed. The team will be announced after the first half of October following confirmation of Fuxia Challenge's Yacht club."

"Our deadline to officially announce our participation in the 33rd America's Cup is the 31st of December... and will depend on securing sponsorship to meet our budget of €55/60 Million."

We were relieved to have confirmation from Paolo that the team intends to have a female skipper, despite Italian media suggestions of different needs, which turned out to be "more a taunt of a journalist than a serious idea". We believe a number of Italian sailing forums will be suitably relieved also!

On the subject of the apparel our previous article focused on, Paolo explains,
"On the 19th of September 2007 we launched a co-marketing operation together with an Italian Volleyball club, Prisma Taranto; the rules of the game allow the sweeper to wear a different shirt from the rest of the team and the event was a press presentation of the Fuxia Challenge shirt that the Prisma Taranto sweeper is going to wear during official matches in the Italian Volleyball premier league. The shirt promotes Fuxia Challenge but is not representative of the official uniform of the Fuxia Challenge Team."

There is a stronger connection between Fuxia Challenge and Prisma Taranto than first appears, more of which will become evident in the future; presently Fuxia Challenge will benefit from the international exposure through outlets such as the Sky Sports network that the exciting Italian Volleyball league generates.

This will come as welcome news to one friend of The Afterguard's who, on publication of our original article, pondered on the fact that the garment illustrated appeared tailored for the male form. Mystery solved, Trevor!


The Afterguard goes Volleyball
Fuxia Vest
Image © 2007 http://www.fuxiachallenge.com/


Finally, The Afterguard asked Paolo to reflect on the reluctance by much of the media (ourselves included) to accept the serious intentions of those behind Fuxia Challenge.

"I believe that most of the reluctance to accept the concept of Fuxia Challenge is due to its innovative approach that breaks the traditional attitude of the world of this America's Cup, indeed this team intends to revolutionize the way the Cup has been perceived to date."

"More than someone’s dream or a design project, Fuxia Challenge is much more real than you could think; it is an initiative with an innovative approach, a media platform that will allow the interested parties to have direct contact with a specific target audience, the female consumers, that is much wider than just the enthusiasts of this sport, to maximize the return on investment. Isn’t that what the AC Management and the corporate sponsors that invest in this event are looking for?"

The Afterguard's heartfelt thanks go to Paolo Rivelli, Institutional Relations Director of Fuxia Challenge, for his time and answers. We hope Paolo and the team will keep us up to speed as to the progress of Fuxia Challenge, a very different America's Cup team.

Thursday, 20 September 2007

33rd America's Cup Legal Dispute - ACM Publishes Legal Documents

As is so often the case, what one hand giveth, the other taketh away...

In a move clearly designed to express confidence in their legal case, ACM have today published several documents via their website (Here) today.

These documents may also be downloaded from the links below:


Memorandum of Law in opposition to Preliminary Injunction

Affidavit - Miquel Terrassa

Affidavit - Hamish Ross

We doubt the timing, coinciding as it does with Alinghi's gesture of goodwill towards GGYC, is accidental. It's typical 'good cop, bad cop', designed to bare teeth in the event anyone suspects the protocol revision expresses weakness.

It's The Afterguard's hope that GGYC & BMW Team Oracle will have anticipated such contradictory actions, will disregard acts of aggression and will seize the opportunity to get the 33rd America's Cup back on track.

33rd America's Cup - Protocol Revised By Société Nautique de Genève, Alinghi & Club Náutico Español de Vela

This afternoon Alinghi have issued a press release concerning protocol changes agreed by Alinghi, SNG & CNEV intended to address the continuing concernings of Golden Gate Yacht Club and halt the ongoing court action.

Whether viewed as an act of altruism, common sense or capitulation, the amendments to the 33rd Protocol do represent the best chance so far for peace within the America's Cup. All attention now turns to North America for a response from GGYC.

The full release from Alinghi's website (Here):

SNG and Alinghi announce Protocol amendment and make a final appeal to BMW Oracle Racing

2007-09-20

Today the Société Nautique de Genève (SNG) and Alinghi announced that after a series of successful Competitor Commission meetings and discussions with the legitimately entered challengers, the Protocol has been amended in agreement with the Challenger of Record, Club Náutico Español de Vela (CNEV). As a result of this, the majority of BMW Oracle Racing’s concerns have been addressed and the Defender issues a final appeal to the American team to drop their legal actions and join the competition.

These developments continue the progress of planning the 33rd America’s Cup, as Brad Butterworth, Alinghi skipper, explains: “The Competitor Commission meetings were set up as a forum to shape the 33rd America’s Cup and this avenue of dialogue is really working for the better of the event. With this and the ongoing design consultation period, which will define the new class rule and competition regulations, we are making good progress towards the 33rd.”

These amendments, as a result of Competitor Commission meetings, also reflect many of the desired changes brought forward by BMW Oracle Racing and discussed between Brad Butterworth and Russell Coutts, BOR skipper, over the last few weeks, in an attempt to resolve their concerns over the 33rd America’s Cup Protocol.


As a result and following these changes, Ernesto Bertarelli, Alinghi syndicate head, appeals to the Golden Gate Yacht Club (GGYC): “I would again appeal to BMW Oracle Racing to enter the 33rd America’s Cup as a legitimate challenger. It has been demonstrated that dialogue is possible for the better of this event and it should be noted by them that many areas of their concerns have been addressed.”
And finally he added: “We would also like BMW Oracle Racing to consider that their action is hindering the opportunity for other teams to enter the competition, and harming the ability of existing competitors to generate sponsorship income and properly plan their challenge.”

The Protocol amendments are as follows:

With regards America’s Cup Management’s (ACM) power to disqualify a competitor, this has been clarified to say that, should a competitor refuse to be bound by the Protocol, then they will have recourse to the Arbitration Panel without risk of disqualification until the Panel rules.


Secondly with regards ACM’s right to refuse an entry. The amendment is a restriction of ACM’s ‘ability to reject’ to an ability only on very specific grounds, which are: failure to comply with the Deed of Gift, a capacity issue within Port America’s Cup or a need to provide an equitable balance of competing nations. The SNG has made it clear that, should the GGYC abandon their legal action, they would be welcomed as a competitor for the 33rd edition and could shape the event along with the other challengers and the Defender during the ongoing Competitor Commission meetings.


A further suggested amendment point, on recommendation from the Arbitration Panel, regards the power of ACM to amend the Protocol and other rules. This has been changed to state that ‘any proposal to make any Protocol changes, related to the way in which the Arbitration Panel works, must be subject to its prior approval.’


In addition to this amendment, the SNG and CNEV have deleted the power of ACM to remove members of the Arbitration Panel.


Finally, the concern regarding ‘neutral management’ has been amended to extend the Fair Sailing rule to apply to all matters directly related to the regatta.

--Ends--

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

33rd America's Cup: United Internet Team Germany - "Vorsprung durch Technik"

United Internet Team Germany today joined the growing band of official challengers for the 33rd America's Cup revealing their methods by announcing heavy-duty financial and technical support.

Along with the continuing presence of United Internet, the German challenge will also be supported by Audi AG, currently the premium sponsor of the TP52 Breitling MedCup. It is great to see that while the 33rd America's Cup is still being dragged through the courts, heavyweight and 'knowing' sports sponsorship can still be secured - a valuable asset to all challengers.

Porsche Consulting are on board for yacht design and technical coordination. It is rumoured that the UK's Jason Ker will be named chief designer for the 90' class.

The team also confirmed the purchase of SUI91 from Swiss America's Cup holders Alinghi; the vessel will duly be renamed GER91. It is believed that existing work on the construction of GER101, one of the last class 5 vessels allocated, will be discontinued.

And finally... Twice previous America's Cup winner Jochen Schümann is confirmed as Team Director, working with previously announced skipper, Karol Jablonski.

The Afterguard's view
After weeks of nothing but courtroom drama and pessimism, the last week has seen two challenging teams step up to the plate and lay it on the line. The unproven TEAMORIGIN presented spectacularly well specified personnel and financial backing, and today Team Germany signalled its intent to make good use of its experience of the last campaign. Despite much distraction, it is welcomed that some remember that the Cup can only be one out on the water.

UITG Press Conference (L-R):
Willy Kuhweide (DCYC), Rupert Stadler (Audi AG),
Michael Scheeren (UITG), Jochen Schümann (UITG),
Ralph Dommermuth (United Internet), Karol Jablonski (UITG),
Eberhard Weiblen (Porsche Consulting)

UITG Class of 2009
Photo © UITG 2007

The UITG Press Statement (Here), reproduced in full:

Jochen Schümann leads German Challenge to 33rd America’s Cup

Starnberg, 19.09.2007 12:15 in AC2007

- Strong Partner: United Internet AG and AUDI AG main sponsors - Porsche Consulting becomes technology partner - German team acquires Alinghi yacht It is an important day in the German sailing sport and a new start for the America’s Cup project.

The second participation of a German yacht in the legendary battle for the oldest sports trophy in the world will be led by the multi Olympic medallist and double America’s Cup winner Jochen Schümann. With this announcement Head of Syndicate of the German Challenge managed the highest possible sportive coup. “We have been doing our homework in the past few weeks and months and dealt with all necessary changes and duties. After committing Karol Jablonski as our skipper we are now able to welcome Jochen Schümann as the new Head of Team”, Michael Scheeren announced. One of the main goals of all participants has now been achieved. The experience and know-how of Jochen Schümann, especially made in the past America’s Cups, will be invaluable for the German team. “For me it is like a dream come true to be able to participate in the America’s Cup for Germany. This is a comeback with an excellent starting position for the German Challenge”, Jochen Schümann looks forward to his new assignment as a Head of Team. In the next couple of weeks he will be selecting the crew for the next two years. “We have been talking with high class sailors and this makes me feel very positive”, says Schümann. From a sports perspective we are well-positioned in such an early stage of the game”, Head of Syndicate Scheeren continues saying.

United Internet AG and AUDI AG main sponsors of the German Challenge With the United Internet AG continuing its commitment in sport sponsoring and the gain of new partners like Audi AG and Porsche Consulting, the whole concept of the campaign is now resting on many pillars. “I am happy to announce that the United Internet AG with its core brands 1&1, GMX and WEB.DE will again be at the starting line for the second German campaign in the America’s Cup”, says Ralph Dommermuth, Head of the United Internet AG. The first campaign has been a great success for the internet company in terms of media recognition. The decisive factors for the United Internet AG to continue their engagement have been the announcement of Valencia once again being the venue and the sportive repositioning of the team. “In the past few weeks and months and in many one-on-one talks Michael Scheeren has not only developed but also realised a stable concept. With Jochen Schümann and Karol Jablonski the Head of Syndicate managed to fix two high-class celebrities for the sportive key positions in the team”, says Dommermuth.

AUDI AG is also supporting the rearranged United Internet Team Germany campaign and is therefore enlarging its sportive engagement in the sailing sport. The participation of the premium manufacturer can be noticed at first sight because of the four rings, which will be exclusively printed on the spinnaker and, together with the brand name 1&1, on the main sail. “The America’s Cup is the most renowned and traditional sailing regatta in the world. To meet this great and fascinating challenge you need to have courage, a strong team and perfect technique. We are proud to be on board of the German team”, Rupert Stadler, member of the board of AUDI AG explained.

Porsche Consulting takes over the yacht construction and provides coordinator of Technique The Porsche Consulting GmbH, a wholly owned subsidiary of Porsche AG, will be responsible for the concentration of all technological competence. While in the first campaign Michael Scheeren sometimes had to struggle with the task management, Porsche Consulting is now handed over all responsibilities for the developing process of the boat and the coordination of all involved companies –ranging from designers over contractors to boat builders. “It is a nice challenge to support the German team in this crucial field. We feel honoured of being appointed with the task to be the management- and technology partner during the construction process of the yacht. Every involved partner of the German team can rely on our commitment to bring our knowledge into this project”, says Head of Porsche Consulting Eberhard Weiblen. In the next weeks a team with a responsible coordinator of Technique will be positioned on the German Base in Valencia.

‘SUI 91’ becomes ‘GER 91’ In the past weeks, the German team was able to purchase ‘SUI 91’, one of the most recent yachts of Cup winner Alinghi. “We now possess a very fast boat right from the beginning”, says skipper Karol Jablonski. In the next weeks SUI 91 will change sites from the Swiss to the German base in Valencia. The German team is one of the first challengers to start training for the 33. America’s Cup. “Time is crucial in the America’s Cup. And it’s in our favour”, Jablonski realises.

Big day for the German sailing sport The ‘Deutsche Challenger Yacht Club’ (DCYC) has officially announced its second participation in the America’s Cup on the 5th of August 2007 and laid the foundation for a successful continuation in the 33. America’s Cup in Valencia. “Today a dream comes true for the German sailing sport. Not only will the campaign be continued, but Jochen Schümann and Karol Jablonski were introduced to the team, and the great commitment of United Internet AG, Audi AG and Porsche Consulting are giving many reasons to look forward to the 33. America’s Cup”, says Willy Kuhweide, commodore of the ‘Deutsche Challenger Yacht Club’. “We would especially like to thank Ralph Dommermuth. Thanks to his personal commitment Germany became part of the legendary America’s Cup”, says the German sailing legend.

--Ends--

Inset image: 'UITG Press Conference' Photo © UITG 2007

Monday, 17 September 2007

33rd America's Cup: TEAMORIGIN Releases Video Report on Crew Launch Event

TEAMORIGIN have made available further video coverage of Friday's team introductions at the Southampton Boat Show.

The 3 minute clip includes on-board shots of the team sailing GBR75 on what appears to be the Solent recently.



The Afterguard will return to the team introduction in due course with a gallery of stills and moving images marking the event.

Saturday, 15 September 2007

33rd America's Cup - New Boat Class Meeting Held

As reported in Friday's The Afterguard, today marked the first day of negotiations which should eventually result in the new America's Cup class yacht. It appears a short-lived event, with a further meeting scheduled for 15th October to finalise a first draft of the new rule, ahead of a completion target which remains 31st October.

The release may be viewed on ACM's website, Here.

Design of new America’s Cup Class Rule underway

15-09-2007

America’s Cup designers from Alinghi and the five challengers attended the first design consultation meeting on Saturday 15 September at the AC Management offices in Valencia.

Tom Schnackenberg, the class rule and competition regulations consultant, on behalf of ACM, submitted the general summary of the rule status and invited comments from the challengers. On the agenda for discussion was the philosophy, which foresees an exciting race boat to watch, in terms of speed, size and power. The 90footer must be physically and technically demanding for the sailors, as Schnackenberg describes: “A boat that harks back to the physical demands in Fremantle for example where every day was raced in 22 knots.”

Many design features need to be straightforward initially due to the tight timeframe that teams will be working within on a two year Cup cycle, but room must be left for substantial future development.

The key dimensions were confirmed as 90ft waterline length and 6.5m draft with a retractable keel to 4.1m, while other key dimensions, including beam, weight and consequently the sail area have been decided based on the infrastructure constraints in Valencia (bases, pontoons, etc). These and the key structural rules will remain confidential to the teams participating in the meetings until the 31 October when the new class rule will be made public.

Tom Schnackenberg commented on the day: “Everyone was very well behaved! I think we have made an excellent start with what is really a very important task. We want this rule to excite designers, sailors and the public alike and to form the foundation of a class that will endure and prosper for a long time.” His positive comments were welcomed by Grant Dalton of Emirates Team New Zealand: “This is a good start to the next Cup and we at TNZ are really excited about the new class. There is no time to lose with such a short Cup cycle and we’re pleased that we’re getting underway.”

The next meeting is scheduled for the 15 October where the design group will discuss the 1st draft of the rule. And meanwhile Schnackenberg will continue to receive input and develop a dialogue with the challengers and Alinghi as part of the design process.
--Ends-

America's Cup - ACM Share (Some Of?) The Love

ACM has today posted a release concerning the distributed profits from the 32nd America's Cup.

The Afterguard has one observation. As detailed in point 7. of the release, ACM have closed the accounts of the 32nd America's Cup to expedite the payment of proceeds to the challenging teams (which may or may not provide more of the fence-sitters with the funds required to formally challenge for the 33rd America's Cup); With the 32nd America's Cup Online Auction yet to finish, wouldn't it have been better to wait until the income generated was known? Or isn't the divestment of ACM's assets a contributory factor? Closed accounts would suggest that by some calculation the income generated isn't being divided amongst the interested parties.

The release can be read on the America's Cup website, Here.

The 32nd America’s Cup competitors receive their share of EUR 66.5 million profit
15-09-2007

AC Management (ACM), organiser of the 32nd America’s Cup, distributes 90% of the EUR 66.5 millions net surplus the event generated over the past four years to participating teams. This will help teams prepare for the 33rd America’s Cup which is to take place in 2009.

By creating a single structure managing both the Challenger Selection Series and the America’s Cup Match and by developing a professional marketing strategy, the organisers of the 32nd America’s Cup succeeded in creating a net surplus to be shared with all competitors of the 32nd event.

This EUR 66.5 million surplus comes from a total revenue of EUR 240 million, generated largely through the city bid and the four year sponsorship programme, but also through TV rights, the hospitality programme and the concessions and marinas of Port America’s Cup.

“This is a significant result and by providing the funds to the teams now, we aim to help them prepare their 33rd campaign, while also giving continuity to the event,” said Michel Hodara, CEO of ACM.

Ernesto Bertarelli, syndicate head of Alinghi, Defender of the 33rd America’s Cup, commented: “The vision for the 32nd America's Cup was to create a fantastic sporting occasion, in Europe, with a viable commercial business model comparable to other major global sporting events.”

The America’s Cup delivered on both accounts with this edition being arguably the best ever with over 4 billion TV viewers and 6 million visitors, watching extremely close racing. Bertarelli now looks to the future: “Our vision for the 33rd America’s Cup is to create an even greater sporting occasion for 2009 with an exciting new class of boats and to build upon the successes of the 32nd edition.”

THE STRATEGY AND STEPS TAKEN TOWARDS THIS NET SURPLUS DISTRIBUTION:
1. AC Management SA (ACM), the event organising body, approached the America’s Cup strategically and created one property by combining the America’s Cup Match with the Challenger Selection Series, while before they were run by separate entities. ACM also created Pre-Regattas which ran the course of the four year campaign;
2. The professional marketing of the property worldwide, focusing on the brand equity of the 'America's Cup', generated €66.5m net surplus from €240m revenue. Of this surplus, 90% is to be distributed to the participating teams.
3. The value generated came mainly from the City bid process and from the integrated sponsoring rights that offered to Partners a presence that ran the course of the four year campaign.
4. ACM also controlled the television rights, the hospitality, concessions and marina mooring within Port America’s Cup.
5. The redistribution formula is 10% to ACM, 45% to the Defender, 45% to the other teams as published in the 32nd Protocol in 2003.
6. Thus, the top challenger (i.e. Emirates Team New Zealand) will receive over €9m. The minimum contribution, to teams who did not qualify for the Semi Finals, is still over €1m.
7. While the distribution date indicated in the Protocol is March 2008, ACM accelerated the closing of the accounts to allow teams to take immediate advantage of the revenue, helping them to prepare for the next campaign. The 33rd America’s Cup will take place in 2009 in Valencia.
--Ends--

Friday, 14 September 2007

TEAMORIGIN's Official Presentation Release & Video

TEAMORIGIN presents its line-up

Sir Keith Mills and Mike Sanderson presented the sailing, design, shore and management teams at the core of TEAMORIGIN, Britain’s challenge for the 33rd America’s Cup.

At the Southampton International Boat Show today TEAMORIGIN’s Sir Keith Mills and Mike Sanderson, Team Principal and Team Director respectively, announced a roll call of British and international sailing, design, boatbuilding and management talent. This group will take TEAMORIGIN towards its ultimate goal of winning the America’s Cup, the oldest sporting trophy in the world, sailing’s Holy Grail and the only major sports trophy Britain has yet to win.

“This is a British challenge. At least 50% of our team is British. The funding is British, the flag is British, the race boats will be built in Britain, GBR will appear on the mainsail of every one of our racing yachts,” said Sir Keith.

TEAMORIGIN is a new team, but 70% of the line-up have previous America’s Cup experience at the highest level. Four members of the team are past America’s Cup winners, five are round the world race winners and two are recent Olympic gold medallists. Ten countries are currently represented and more than half of the team is British-born.

“This is a modern team, diverse in its origins but already solidly thinking as one group with one aim - to ultimately win the America’s Cup for Britain,” explained Team Director Mike Sanderson.

Britain’s Challenge for the next America’s Cup will be led on the water by triple Olympic medallist Ben Ainslie OBE.

“This is a fantastic challenge and I am really honoured to be in the position of leading a sailing team which I believe has the ability to go out and win the America’s Cup. We now all need to get on with the huge amount of work that lies ahead of us,” said Skipper Ben Ainslie.

Sailing, a mechanised sport, and the America’s Cup, a design and technology-led competition, means that TEAMORIGIN will require a powerful and experienced design office. This will be lead by Briton Andy Claughton, Argentinean Juan Kouyoumdjian, and German Mickey Ickert, all highly experienced with complimentary talents in the refined fields of America’s Cup yacht design.

“I’ve been involved in designing and testing America’s Cup yachts since the 1980s, a period which has spanned three different types of yacht, five different venues and many different teams. Heading into a new era involving a fourth new class, but this time for a powerful British team, is really stimulating for me personally,” said Design Co-ordinator Andrew Claughton.

To be held in 2009 in Valencia, Spain, preparations for the 33rd America’s Cup are picking up pace around the world and a huge amount of interest in TEAMORIGIN’s make-up will be expressed by the five other teams currently entered.

“I’m particularly excited that we have been able to recruit the people to tackle the task. I believe that with the group presented today TEAMORIGIN has the talent resources necessary to design, sail, maintain and manage a world class America’s Cup team,” said Sir Keith.

TEAMORIGIN is a commercially-led team and one that will run on a mixture of private and sponsor funding.

“I’m also happy to announce that Charles Dunstone has decided to join me as a partner in financing this project, something that I believe lends enormous credibility to the seriousness of this campaign.”

As a keen amateur sailor and one of Britain’s leading businessmen Charles Dunstone has a strong personal interest in TEAMORIGIN as many members of his crew from previous campaigns have joined the team.

“I believe it is really important that Great Britain, the origin of the Cup, is represented competitively at this level. I believe that with the team that Keith and Mike have put together we can win. Consequently I have decided to lend my full personal support,” explained Charles Dunstone.

“The modern European America’s Cup competition has created an opportunity that hasn’t existed before. It is now possible to run a commercially viable team at this level. We have the best design, sailing, financial and management talent of a generation available to us. Never before has a British team had all the ingredients necessary for success at the same time. As a result we can compete at the America’s Cup in a manner that no previous British challenge has done before,” concluded Sir Keith.
--Ends--

The Afterguard: TEAMORIGIN Mean Business

Firstly, apologies to our readers - technology has cramped The Afterguard's style somewhat (we were unable to blog live from the show floor), and by now what we have to report will likely be general knowledge... However, few will have reported the team's vital statistics within touching distance of GBR75, so we'll press on regardless...

The Team presented to the world today left The Afterguard in no doubt of the serious intent within TEAMORIGIN. While personal preferences many vary, nobody could honestly deny that TEAMORIGIN have assembled a great team; the deck crew boast the experience of over 35 previous America's Cup campaigns, the design team over 20; & that's without considering experience of other sailing competitions. There's a strong British contingent, along with compatriots of the Team Director. Of obvious benefit is the cohesion present - many of the crew have sailed and worked together, most notably a number of the ABN-Amro team with which Mike Sanderson enjoyed such success.

The biggest surprise of the day came not with regard to crew - Sir Keith Mills has an Investor/Partner, Charles Dunstone of the Carphone Warehouse. This bolsters the financial foundations of TEAMORIGIN, making this no longer a single-benefactor operation. No announcements were made regarding official sponsors, but that isn't surprising considering the current legal status of the 33rd Cup. No doubt Charles' input will ensure a smooth ride for the team during the continuing financial odyssey while his enthusiasm for sailing will be welcomed.

Ben Ainslie is confirmed as Helmsman for the team. We spoke briefly with Ben at the show who confirmed that his TEAMORIGIN and Olympics commitments required very exacting organisation in 2008; more than his words, his focus & determination was palpable and might well explain at least some of his success on the water. We look forward to watching him help develop the TEAMORIGIN challenge.

Overall there was a strong sense of relief from the principle and backroom members of TEAMORIGIN that their component parts had now been publicly identified, and that the project was no longer a plan, but flesh and bones; almost as entertaining as watching GBR75 reaching furiously on the waters of Southampton was to watch the emotion the sight generated amongst the shore crew present - a lot had obviously been put into this day, and the team can feel justifiably proud of their performance; of course everything has yet to be achieved in competition, but they're off and running.

We at The Afterguard have frequently questioned the 33rd Protocol's issue concerning the Defender's inclusion in the challenger series; Former ACM man,
Marcus Hutchinson (TEAMORIGIN's Director of External Affairs & Communications) advised us to carefully consider the implications of not just clause 11 (concerning the challenger regattas), but also the ambiguity contained within clause 12 (covering the 'defender series') leaving us with a final tantalising comment, "Watch this space".

Andy Claughton confirmed that he would be flying to Valencia for a September 15th meeting concerning the new boat class, and was keen to see what was open to negotiation and how large the design box would be; of particular concern to him was the need to refine the design's incorporation of a sliding keel in the 12 months or so given to getting the 90' vessel sailing.

We were delighted that Sir Keith himself had a few moments to spare for us, during which he reflected with pride on the team he had assembled to undertake the challenges ahead; when asked to choose to define himself as either a hands-on or hands-off team principle, Sir Keith defined himself as the former, reflecting that he had selected talented individuals to concern themselves with the day to day running of things, while he was on hand to provide direction and support in any way he could.



The Power Behind TEAMORIGIN (L-R):
Sir Keith Mills, Ben Ainslie, Charles Dunstone, Mike Sanderson

TeamOrigin's Foyer
Photo © TheAfterguard 2007


Key Personnel
Team Principle: Sir Keith Mills - GBR
Partner & Investor: Charles Dunstone - GBR
Team Director: Mike Sanderson - NZL

Sailing Team
Helmsman: Ben Ainslie - GBR (prev. Emirates Team New Zealand [2004], One World Challenge [2000])
Tactician: Iain Percy - GBR (prev. +39)
Strategist/Traveller: Rob Greenhalgh - GBR (Prev. ABN-Amro)
Navigator: Ian Moore - GBR (prev. Emirates Team New Zealand)
Aft Grinder/Strategist: Andrew Simpson - GBR (Prev. +39)
Mainsheet Trimmer: Neal McDonald - GBR (Prev. Victory Challenge [2007], GBR Challenge [2003], Sydney 95 [1993]).
Trimmer: Robbie Naismith -NZL (Prev. BMW Oracle Racing [2007/2003], Team New Zealand [2000/1995], New Zealand Challenge [1992])
Grinder:
Chris Brittle - GBR (Prev. +39)
David Carr - GBR (Prev. Victory Challenge [2005], GBR Challenge [2003])
Ian Weighell - GBR (Prev. Victory Challenge [2007], GBR Challenge [2003])
Pawel Bielecki - POL (Prev. +39)
Mastman:
Julien Cressant - FRA (Prev. BMW Oracle Racing [2007], Le Defi Areva [2003], 6' SENS Le Defi [2000])
George Skuodas - GBR (Prev. Mascalzone [2007], K-Challenge [2005], GBR Challenge [2003])
Mid Bowman: Kevin Batten - NZL (Prev. BMW Oracle [2007/2003], Tag Heuer [1995], Spirit of Australia [1990])
Bowman:
Justin Slattery - IRL (Prev. K-Challenge [2004])
Matt Cornwell - GBR (Prev. Areva Challenge [2007], GBR Challenge [2003])
Boat Captain: Nick Bice - AUS (Prev. Young Australia [2000])


Design/Technical
Principle Design: Juan Kouyoumdjian - ARG, & his full office (of over 30 people) (Prev. BMW Oracle [2007], Prada [2003], Le Defi [2000/1995]; not in attendance as currently racing in the Star Europeans).
Design Coordinator: Andy Claughton - GBR (Prev. Emirates Team New Zealand)
Technical Director/Navigator: Stan Honey - USA (prev. ABN-Amro)
Aero Director: Mikey Ickert - DEU (Prev. BMW Oracle Racing)
Mast & Spars: Bruce Thompson - NZL (prev. Sparcraft)
CFD: Dr Rodrigo Azcueta - ARG
Performance VPP: Gonzalo Kouyoumdjian - ARG
Head of Structural Design: Andrea Avaldi - ITA

Shore Team
Shore Operations Director: David Duff - NZL
Head Of Boat Operations: Tim Hacket - USA
Boat Builder: Pete Britt - AUS, James Walker - GBR
Head of Tender Operations: Mike Heffer - NZL
Head of Sail Operations: Andrew Witherspoon - NZL
Sailmaker: Paul Gudgeon - GBR/NZL
Rigger: Ian Goldsworthy - GBR
Rig Components: Sid Barker - NZL
Head Chef: Henry Lynskey - NZL

Central Services
Commercial Director: Nick Masson - GBR
Director of Marketing & Events: Leslie Ryan - IRL
Director of External Affairs & Communications: Marcus Hutchinson - IRL/GBR (prev. ACM)
Account Director: Jerry Hill - GBR
Account Director: Adam Walker - GBR
Account Director: Andy Green - GBR
Head of Marketing Services: Daniel Miles - GBR
Merchandising Manager: Serena Gosling - GBR
Events Manager: Emma Ramply - GBR
Commercial Co-ordinator: Emily Jennings - GBR
Finance Director: Dermot Heffernan - GBR
Finance Controller: Diana Puketapu - NZL
HR Director: Viv Jarvis - GBR
HR Manager: Carolyn Spencer - GBR
HR Co-ordinator: Michelle Whittington - GBR
Legal Counsel: Robert Datnow - GBR
Project Manager: Martin Rust - GBR
PA to Sir Keith Mills Debbie Cavanagh - GBR
PA to Mike Sanderson: Charlotte Kootstra - HOL


Apologies to those of the 57-strong ORIGIN team we have omitted - purely down to sore thumbs! Our thanks go to the team for their hospitality.

GBR75's UK Sailing Debut
GBR75
Photo © TheAfterguard 2007

Inset image: 'TEAMORIGIN Open The Southampton Boatshow' Photo © The Afterguard 2007

The Afterguard - Bringing Live Reports From TEAMORIGIN America's Cup Presentation At Southampton Boat Show

It's that time of year again - the roads of Southampton have been clogged with mega yachts sat precariously atop articulated lorries; hideously expensive & environmentally unfriendly temporary structures have been erected; faces have been painted, best bib & tucker pressed, speeches rehearsed... It's time to get the show on the road - the Southampton Boat Show opens today.

The Afterguard will be on hand to attend the TEAMORIGIN crew & training vessel launch, & technology allowing, we'll bring live reports from the show floor. We'll (annoyingly) overhear the questions posed to the team by the well informed & will note the responses. We'll even bring The Afterguard's instamatic (you think we're joking!) to bear on anyone willing to stand still long enough...

Check back at or shortly after 10:00 (GMT).

Thursday, 13 September 2007

America's Cup Sale Now On - Everything Must Go!

The Afterguard's polite reminder - Don't Be Late! - at 10:00 (CET) today, Thursday 13th September, 2007, America's Cup Management (ACM) begin their online auction of Assets From The 32nd America's Cup.

Yup folks, when the auction ends on Saturday 15th at 18:00 (CET), the 32nd America's Cup will be just a distant memory. The cupboards will be bare, and presumably ACM will begin 'investing' the Challenger's entry fees on new tables, chairs, etc. - the old ones would never do, they were just so '32'.

Details can be found on the special ACM Auction site: Here.

Studying the 'bid catalogue' you'll get to flick through nearly 900 individual lots, with Ribs; Golf Buggies; Battery powered trains; enough Bicycles to keep most of China pedalling; Electric Tricycles; Desks; Chairs; bar stools; lounge, office & Patio Furniture; Flags; Desktop PCs & Laptops; Plasma, LCD & CRT Screens; and even scale remote-control models of the 32nd Cup competitor vessels (don't these things get sold off to benefit charitable causes usually? Ok, we'll hush). For those with suitably sized swimming pools, you can even bid for your own 'Luis Vuitton' inflatable buoy. Then there are also 'structures' - pyramid refreshment tents, 'waves', why there's even a 'statue' of the Auld Mug for those too lazy to wrestle the real one from Alinghi's grasp. Oh, and magazines. No auction is complete without the obligatory lots of 'various' magazines.

For The Afterguard's take on events, we respectfully refer readers to our previously published story: 'The America's Cup - There's Everything To Pay For'.

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

TEAMORIGIN: The Telegraph predicts Skipper Ainslie

In a short item reporting the launch of TEAMORIGIN's crew at this Friday's Southampton Boat Show, The British Daily Telegraph newspaper is predicting that Ben Ainslie will skipper.

See the report in context, Here.

"It is almost certain Ben Ainslie,
who had just completed Team New Zealand commitments,
will be the skipper."

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

33rd America's Cup - GGYC's View On Court Proceedings

The Golden Gate Yacht Club have posted a release reflecting on Monday's court decision to request written arguments and to set a date for proceedings; not surprisingly, it does not reflect on the court's decision not to grant an injunction on SNG.

Once again, a chink of light - Tom Ehman states a strong preference for a negotiated solution.

Download the full release via the GGYC website, Here.

Court Orders Date for America’s Cup Hearing
New York, NY 10 Sept. 2007 --

The Supreme Court of the State of New York today ruled that it would hear argument on October 22 on the validity of the challenge that has produced the proposed protocol for the next America’s Cup.


“We are very pleased with this decision, as we are keen to see this issue properly resolved with a minimum of further delay,” Tom Ehman, Head of External Affairs for GGYC’s team, BMW ORACLE Racing, said.


“During the hearing, the court suggested that the parties engage in mediation to resolve all disputes. This is a course that we continue to support,” Ehman said.


“Our strong preference remains to negotiate a solution. If this is not possible, today’s decision provides for swift resolution through the courts.”


He said the team strongly favors an America’s Cup regatta like the last one sailing in monohulls, and had supported seeking a quick legal resolution so that
all participants could know the outcome of the case as soon as possible.

The San Francisco club alleges that the current America’s Cup Defender, Société Nautique de Genève (SNG), is in breach of its duty under the Deed of Gift that governs the Cup. It says SNG has accepted a challenge from an invalid contender, and is seeking to impose an unprecedented one-sided set of rules that unfairly advantage the defender to the detriment of all other competitors.


Ehman said that on October 22 the court would hear argument as to the merits of the case and that a judgement could be expected shortly thereafter.

--Ends--

Monday, 10 September 2007

33rd America's Cup - Supreme Court Dismisses Injunction, Sets Hearing For 22nd October

Justice Herman Cahn of the New York Supreme Court has dismissed GGYC's application for an injunction against SNG, and has ruled that both parties must submit written arguments ahead of an October 22nd, 2007 hearing date to resolve the issue of validity of CNEV's challenge.

As we went to press, we had not heard any reaction from GGYC.

Alinghi's website statement (Here):

More Good News for SNG as New York Court does not grant Injunction

After a brief hearing in the New York Supreme Court today before Justice Cahn, the Société Nautique de Genève (SNG) is pleased to announce that the Judge did not grant the Golden Gate Yacht Club’s (GGYC) application for an injunction, and instead ordered the parties to submit written legal arguments designed to dispose of the case in the shortest possible time.

The Judge set the 22 October as the date to hear legal arguments to resolve the central issue, which focuses on the validity of Club Náutico Español de Vela (CNEV), the Spanish challenge, accepted by the SNG after winning the 32nd America’s Cup.

The Spanish challenge, CNEV, also advised the Court that it will intervene in the case as a party so as to reinforce and confirm its legal standing as Challenger of Record for the 33rd America’s Cup.

Importantly, this is the second successful legal outcome in only a matter of days, following the America’s Cup Arbitration Panel’s ruling over the weekend that declared legitimate the Challenger of Record, and that the 33rd Protocol complies with the Deed of Gift.

“Naturally we are pleased with this outcome which is another welcome positive result in this unfortunate legal process,” said Hamish Ross, Alinghi General Counsel, adding: “As we had asked the Court, SNG will be submitting, as planned, its motion to dismiss the case entirely, and we look forward to having an opportunity to clear this matter up as quickly as possible on the date set by the Court. We now need to draw a line under the uncertainty and damage created by the Golden Gate Yacht Club and BMW Oracle Racing’s actions and focus on the future.

Meanwhile work continues apace on the 33rd Americas Cup in Valencia following the first Competitors Commission meeting on Friday of last week and with further meetings being scheduled. This period of consultation with the five registered challengers runs until the end of October when the new class rule will be published, ensuring that the America’s Cup remains at the pinnacle of international sailing.
--Ends--

Desafio Español Announce Farr Yacht Design But No Crew

Today's scheduled press conference with Desafio Español revealed detail of the team's appointed designers, but not of their crew.

Farr Yacht Design will be joined by an as yet unnamed second party to form DE's design team, under John Cutler's continuing Technical Directorship.

It's well worth keeping an eye on Valencia Sailing's take on the news, Here which includes the audio of the conference (in Spanish, of course). We're hoping for a release in English, but until we have an alternative, here's Google's take on the Spanish language press release:

Spanish Desafío presents/displays its new structure for 33ª America´s Cup

Valencia, 10 of September of 2007

Spanish Desafío has presented/displayed today to Mass media the new organizational chart of the union facing its participation in 33ª America´s Cup. Miguel Angel Garcia-Juez, chief of a main directorate of Communication and Institutional Relations, presented/displayed to the new chief of a main directorate Financiero and Marketing, Enrique Planells.

Also, Garcia-Juez explained that the main directorate of the Spanish union is formed by three great areas of management: Technical-Sport, whose director as continuous month of July announced the past being Agustín Zulueta. The Financial area and Marketing in charge of Enrique Planells, and finally the area of Institutional Communication-Relation with Miguel Angel Garcia-Juez to the front.

On the other hand, Agustín Zulueta explained that during these months since finalized 32ª America´s Cup has been continued working with a group of 28 people, “has been a difficult time of draftees. The next Monday 17 of September new incorporations are predicted and we will count on a list of around 60 people”.

Desafío Spanish added “part of a budget of 60 million euros guaranteed and assured by our main patrocinador Iberdrola”.

One of the main characteristics this edition is the design. “The boat is going to have much more importance, since it is going to be one more an opened competition and the great equipment is going to be threatened because any more modest equipment can remove a competitive boat”,

Zulueta also talked about the company/signature, the last week, with the technical office of Farr Yatch Design “although John Cutler it will continue assuming the direction of the technical office and 60% of the resources of the technical office will continue being such”.

The head of the union said that there will be another main designer along with Farr Yatch Design “who will be in time complete in the base of Spanish Desafío”. “At the end of this month we want to have all our technical office in the base and the first week of October we will be able to facilitate 95% of the draftees of the crew”.

The next Saturday 15 of September is predicted that the meeting of the equipment until now enrolled in 33ª is held edition to treat the new class. “Right now we know that they are going to be boats of 90 feet, of six meters of openwork, more spectacular boats with a vélica surface of almost the double, but not yet nothing of the design is known”, clarified donostiarra.

To a question on the controversy generated around the Spanish Nautical Club, Zulueta assured that Spanish Desafio has followed a prudence policy, “we do not have anything to say, since it is an external question to our daily management, we worked to be a great equipment. We are making our work with firm step and are going to follow with this dynamics”.

With respect to the possible incorporation of a new Spanish equipment to the competition of more prestigious candle of the world, Zulueta showed that “hopefully projects come that give more importance to Spain and to the candle”.

NOTE: We enclosed CV de Farr Yatch Design. And reviews CV Enrique Planells, Chief of a main directorate Financiero and Marketing.
Miguel Angel Garcia-Juez, Chief of a main directorate Comunicación and Institutional Relaciones.

The photo of the company/signature with Farr Yatch Design you can find it in the page Web in press, photos 2007. Of izda to dcha: Agustín Zulueta, Patrick Shaughnessy, vice-president of Farr Yatch Desgin, and Enrique Planells.
Farr Yacht Design
Farr Yacht Design will be the office of design of Spanish Desafío for the 33 edition of the America´s Cup. Farr Yacht Design is one of the most important companies of design of boats of the world. The boats of Farr been have involved in the America´s Cup from 1987 and during last the 25 years of its table of design they have left winning boats 40 championships of the World in its different modalities, America´s Cup, Volvo Ocean Race, Admiral´s Cup, Sardinia Cup, Commodore´s Cup or Kenwood Cup among other numerous regatas.

This office will provide to the Spanish equipment resources for the development of the new boats of the America´s Cup and an equipment of design and investigation at upper the level with the best tools and qualified personnel to begin of an immediate way the project of design and development.

“We have decided to unite us to Spanish Desafio because we think that of between all the challenges that had contacted with us, the Spanish is the one that better fits for the services that we can provide”, Patrick Shaughnessy said, Vice-president of Farr Yacht Design.

“We are enchanted of being able to bring all our equipment to the project, and to widen our participation beyond the investigation and the work of design to include the strategic planning, the supervision of construction, the optimization of boat and the attendance in the maintenance. ” Ward, the main designer for Spanish Desafio said to Britton.

Boats designed by Farr Yacht Design for America' s Cup
2007 BMW Oracle Racing the USA 87, the USA 98
2003 Oracle BMW Racing the USA 71, the USA 76
2000 Young America the USA 53, the USA 58
1995 Tag Heuer NZL 39
1992 New Zealand Challenge NZL 10, NZL, 12, NZL 14, NZL 20
1988 New Zealand KZ 1
1987 Kiwi Magic KZ 3, KZ 5, KZ 7


Personnel of Farr Yacht Design that will work for Spanish Desafío:
Britton Main Ward Designer
Bryan Baker Designer
Mat Bird- Designer
Mark Bishop- Designer
Russell Bowler- Designer
Chris Cochran- Designer
Bruce Farr- Designer
Alon Finkelstein- Designer
David Fornaro- Designer
Pete Levesque- Designer
Alan Salisch- Designer
Jim Schmicker- Designer
Patrick Shaughnessy- Designer
Luke Shingledecker- Designer
Ann DeVilbiss- Administration
Jennifer Emmet- Administration
Bobbi Hobson- Administration

Reviews Vitae Curriculum

Enrique Planells:

Lawyer in Enterprise Sciences by the University of Valencia and Máster in Direction and administration of Companies in IESE.

Before his incorporation to Spanish Desafío like chief of a main directorate Financiero and Marketing were director of Department of Control and Management of Iberdrola in the Region This (Valencian Community and Murcia).

Miguel Angel Garcia-Juez, chief of a main directorate Comunicación and Institutional Relaciones:

Journalist and economist. Doctor in Sciences of the Information.
President of the Publishing Group Grafic, that groups several economic and professional publications as Auctions Century XXI, Ideas and Businesses, Diners, Club, among others.


--Ends--