Thursday, 23 August 2007

Alinghi Explain The 33rd Protocol

Alinghi today posted their understanding of the (undisputed) 33rd Protocol, repeating Ernesto Bertorelli's intent to participate in the challenger series without repercussion.

Q: In what sport can you lose in the knock-out round, only to compete in the final?
A: The battle for sport's oldest trophy, the America's Cup.

Alinghi's article in full (see it here):

33rd America’s Cup, what we know so far…

When Alinghi won the America’s Cup again on the 3 July 2007 after a fierce battle against Emirates Team New Zealand, it remained the Defender and thus the 33rd Protocol was born. Outlined here you will find what we know to date:


Valencia was announced as the venue for the 33rd America's Cup on 25 July – just three weeks after the Defender won the trophy for the second time.

Next year will see two pre-regattas, the first of which will be held during the spring in Valencia, the second will take place in the autumn and will be at a European location that is yet to be selected. The racing in 2009 will be scheduled between May and July.

The new Class?
The current Version 5 America’s Cup Class boats will be used for the two pre-regattas and Alinghi will compete in both. The new Class Rule will be announced by the 31 October 2007 and there will be a consultation period with the existing entered challengers during the month of September. Teams will be able to build two boats but will only be allowed to sail one at a time in a bid to reduce the costs of two-boat testing.

The challengers?
The Société Nautique de Genève (SNG), represented by
Alinghi accepted the Club Náutico Español de Vela (CNEV), represented by the Spanish team, as Challenger of Record for the 33rd America’s Cup. They were soon followed by Team Shosholoza and the new British challenge TeamOrigin. And then on the 25 July, Team New Zealand also challenged bringing the number of teams to five including the Defender.

The racing?

Alinghi will compete in all regattas leading up to the America’s Cup Match in 2009, as with just a one boat campaign the defender will need to race against the challengers in order to measure performance. Ernesto Bertarelli, syndicate head, explains: "The fun is racing. Like in Formula 1, our intent is to reduce the amount of time we spend wasting money going around the track without a competitive gain," he said. "Because the ‘one boat at a time’ rule will apply to Alinghi as well, we will have to participate in the Challenger Series. Without racing other boats we do not have the opportunity to test our performance against other teams.” He also added: “If we are eliminated in the Challengers Series we will lose the right to race and will not race again until the Match."


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