Please select your home edition
Edition
Southern Spars

America's Cup- Spithill says that Challengers were offered second AC62

by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz on 12 Jun 2014
Once again Jimmy Spithill and Team New Zealand are involved in a face-off over the America's Cup ACEA - Photo Gilles Martin-Raget © http://photo.americascup.com/
In an interview broadcast on NewstalkZB Thursday afternoon, NZT, Oracle Team USA skipper Jimmy Spithill says that the America's Cup Challengers were offered the option of having a second AC62 but turned it down.

Spithill says the offer is still possibly open to acceptance by the Challenger group.

Spithill's comments came in a lengthy interview, conducted in New Zealand's most popular drive time radio show, after he was asked about the fairness of the Defenders being allowed two AC62 boats and the Challengers only one.

'We did offer a the exact same option to the Challengers - a second boat under the same conditions as ours. But it was declined. Obviously it was declined because they are all racing against the other boats in the Semis and Finals, and its a cost saving thing.

'I think we would still stand by that offer if they (the Challengers) wanted to reconsider', Spithill added.

The double-America's Cup winner did not elaborate exactly on who declined the offer - whether it was the Challenger of Record, Hamilton Island Yacht Club, or the Challengers as a group in consultation with Hamilton Island YC.

If the offer is still on the table and is accepted, it would eliminate a major criticism of the Protocol that was announced just over a week ago.

Earlier this week, other major changes were made to the Protocol that gave the appointment of key race officials to the Competitors Forum.

That move eliminated another major criticism of the Protocol - being control of officials by the Defender.

Much of the interview focussed on the Team New Zealand leadership question which is being continually referenced by Oracle Team USA via social media. Many believe this is part of a concerted campaign by the Defender to destabilize the New Zealand team which has been in existence for almost 30 years, and which came within an ace of taking the America's Cup off Oracle Team USA in September 2013.

Last Friday morning on Television New Zealand's breakfast show, Spithill said several people could take over the management of Team New Zealand. Challenged by show host, Larry Williams to name those people, the Australian rattled off a list of sailors - all but one were ex the 1995 and 2000 Team New Zealand program who left to join Alinghi.

They included Brad Butterworth, Simon Daubney, Warwick Fleury, Murrays Jones. Three of those names subsequently joined Oracle Team USA, and others including Butterworth, are still believed to be close associates of Oracle Team USA CEO, Russell Coutts.

Spithill also attacked Team New Zealand CEO Grant Dalton, saying that Oracle Team USA had a good productive relationship with all the prospective Challengers except Team New Zealand. He claimed Dalton was continually talking down the America's Cup and that could be the reason the team was having trouble getting sponsorship backing. Dalton has always claimed that without a venue and Match dates named, it is not possible to go to sponsors with a definite proposal to raise sponsorship funding.

In the meantime the team, along with all Challengers have to pay USD3million in Performance Bonds and Entry fees by December 1, 2014. That has been raised as an obstacle by the New Zealand team which, at this stage of the America's Cup cycle is not cash-rich.

In the 34th America's Cup Protocol, the first editions also had a requirement for high entry fees and performance bonds. In fact, these were USD1million entry fee and EUR3million Performance Bonds, all payable before the first AC72's were allowed to be launched. The substantial payments were slashed to just a $100,000 entry fee after they were perceived as an impediment to entry by several potential challengers.

A respected international UK yachting correspondent, Stuart Alexander, reported that another long standing Challenger, Luna Rossa had described the 35th America's Cup Protocol as 'naked dictatorship,' contrary to Spithill's assertions about Team New Zealand being a lone voice against the document.

There may be further comment from the Italian team at a launch function tonight to be broadcast online at 12.00CET

To hear Part 1 of the interview click here

To hear Part 2 of the interview click here

Mackay BoatsHelm Events 660x82North Technology - Southern Spars

Related Articles

A Q&A with Dick Neville, Quantum Key West Race Week’s RC chairman
I caught up with Dick Neville, Race Committee chair for the Quantum Key West Race Week, to learn more about the event. For the past 30 years, international sailors have gathered in Key West, Florida, each January for Key West Race Week, a regatta that has achieved legendary status due to its calendar dates, its location, and the impressive level of competition and racecourse management that this storied event offers. I caught up with Dick Neville, Race Committee chair for this year’s Quantum KWRW, to learn more.
Posted on 16 Jan
A Q&A with Daniel Smith, the Clipper Race’s new deputy race director
I talked with Daniel Smith, the Clipper Round The World Race’s new deputy race director, to learn more about his role. I was fortunate to sail with Daniel Smith [36, SCO], skipper of “Derry~Londonderry~Doire” for the 2015/2016 edition of the Clipper Round The World Race, when the fleet reached Seattle last spring. Now, Smith has been hired as the event’s deputy race director-a job that will test many of the skills that he polished as a skipper. I caught up with Smith via email to learn more about his new job.
Posted on 9 Jan
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Suck it up, sunshine!
The 72nd start of the iconic blue water classic had 300,000 spectators lining the foreshores of Sydney Harbour The 72nd start of the iconic blue water classic had 300,000 spectators lining the foreshores of Sydney Harbour, another two million watching on TV, and the constant buzz and whir of media helicopters overhead. 88 boats, from Australia, USA, UK, Germany, Sweden, Russia, Japan, Korea, China, oh and New Zealand, had lined up on three start lines.
Posted on 31 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race - More merriment on the airwaves
Here are more examples of merriment on the airwaves between the boats and Hobart Race Control So on December 29, 2016, after the River Derwent had let just three boats home (Perpetual Loyal, Giacomo and Scallywag, all inside the old race record, she went to sleep for a lot of the day. This made it frustrating for the sailors, some of whom saw the lighter side. So after seeing some of those in Dark & Stormy, here are more examples of merriment on the airwaves between the boats and HRC
Posted on 29 Dec 2016
Sydney Hobart Race-Dark and stormy, well because it is Dark and Stormy
Proving that there is a lighter side to the frustrations that is a race to Hobart Well it is now dark and the rain 'storms' have passed, but proving that there is a lighter side to the frustrations that is a race to Hobart, the custom Murray 37, Dark & Stormy had a wonderful exchange on the radio. Quite possibly it was co-owner and Navigator Terry Courts on the VHF in the super-frank exchange with Hobart Race Control at around 1928hrs on 29/12/16.
Posted on 29 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race - Wicked
ather and Son outfit, Wicked, are Matt and Mark Welsh from Melbourne. Matt is at home on the couch after knee surgery Father and Son outfit, Wicked, are Matt and Mark Welsh from Melbourne. Matt is at home on the couch after knee surgery, but Mark is out on the water, approaching Hobart. From on board he said, 'Amazing race. Barely any windward work. Just does not get better than this. Bit of gear damage cost us early, and we had to sail a little conservatively.'
Posted on 29 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race - Accepting the Challenge
When you buy a boat like the late Lou Abrahma's Sydney 38, Challenge, you're almost obliged to keep taking her South When you buy a boat like the late Lou Abrahma's Sydney 38, Challenge, you're almost obliged to keep taking her South at Christmas time. Luckily this has not been a problem for Chris Mrakas and his new crew, which includes Bruce Reidy
Posted on 29 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race – 67 out of 70
It's a pretty awesome score in anybody’s language. When it is the number of hours you spend under kite It's a pretty awesome score in anybody’s language. When it is the number of hours you spend under kite in the 72nd Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race so far, then it is more than A+++. Anto Sweetapple from on board the Jones 40, Quetzalcoatl, reports in from at sea for us.
Posted on 29 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart 2016 - The 60 Hour report card
60 hours into the 72nd Rolex Sydney Hobart race. 16 boats finished,five boats retired and 67 boats at sea. The state of play 60 hours into the 72nd running of the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race. At 0100hrs Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time this morning, 16 boats had finished the 2016 race. Five boats had retired, and 67 boats were still on the water.
Posted on 28 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race – the second step for CQS and 2017
It was a frustrating end to a frustrating race for the newest supermaxi in the 2016 Rolex Sydney to Hobart race It was a frustrating end to a frustrating race for the newest supermaxi to compete in the 2016 Rolex Sydney to Hobart race. It was just her second ever race, with her first, the White Island Race in New Zealand, producing a line honours win. While Ludde Ingvall’s radical new 98-footer CQS had a very slow passage across an almost windless Storm Bay and River Derwent.
Posted on 28 Dec 2016