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Louis Vuitton Cup- Luna Rossa excuse themselves from Race 1

by Richard Gladwell on 7 Jul 2013
Massimiliano Sirena - Skipper Luna Rossa Carlo Borlenghi/Luna Rossa© http://www.lunarossachallenge.com

Luna Rossa Challenge 2013 has confirmed that it will not race against Emirates Team New Zealand on July 7, 2013.

The race was to have been the first of the Louis Vuitton Cup, the Challenger Selection Series for the America's Cup, starting on September 7, 2013.

Artemis Racing, the Challenger of Record for the America's Cup have said they will not be ready to race until late July at the earliest. They will miss the next two races in the Qualifying regatts, meaning that the first race in the Louis Vuitton Cup will now be Saturday July 13, 2013.

Emirates Team New Zealand is expected to start tomorrow and sail the course to win the first point of the regatta.

Luna Rossa is waiting for the International Jury decision on its protest against the measures introduced by the Regatta Director on the 29th of June 2013 (Regatta Notices 185 and 189

Luna Rossa considers that, by issuing these documents, the Regatta Director has breached the rules governing the 34th America’s Cup and has exceeded his jurisdiction and authority.

The International Jury is widely expected to uphold the Applications of Luna Rossa and Emirates Team New Zealand, and refer all AC72 Class Rule Changes and Protocol changes back to the four teams.

They will then be required to vote on the basis of requiring unanimous support for any AC72 Class Rules changes, and majority support for any Protocol change.

If the teams fail to agree on this voting basis on the changes, then the rules remain as they are currently written

If that is the case, then Regatta Director Iain Murray will have to make a decision as to whether reverting to the original rules constitutes a safety issue. If that is the case, as he indicated at his Media Conference on Thursday, then he has to request an adjustment from US Coast Guard the the Event Permit.

It is not clear what would happen at and beyond that point.

Murray told the Media Conference on Thursday, the Permit had been in the process of negotiation with the US Coast Guard for over two years.

For the Jury to uphold the position adopted by the Regatta Director, he would have to show that he was acting within the terms of the Protocol in using Article 16 to institute AC72 Class Rules changes under a phrase in the Article that require competitors to comply with 'all applicable laws and regulations of any city, state, national or governmental authority having jurisdiction over the Event...'

He would also have to address how he believed the changes made were necessary improvements for safety, and that he had the authority to go beyond just Recommending changes to the four Teams.

In a Notice dated July 6, 2013 the Race Director confirmed that Emirates Team New Zealand had complied with, and met the Race Director's satisfaction in terms of the AC72 Yacht Structural and Dagger-board Rake Control Hydraulic System review. Emirates Team NZ are the only competitor to have received this clearance.

Emirates Team New Zealand, weather permitting are expected to sail the course on July 7, 2013 and pick up the first point in the Louis Vuitton Cup.
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