The 34th America's Cup organisers have announced significant reductions in both the entry fee and the performance bond requirements over three months ahead of the closing date for entries.
The moves announced at the World Racing Forum in Portugal have slashed the entry free by over a million US dollars (previously set at E1million or USD1.3million) payable in April 2012. However the currency of the Entry Free has now changed completely to US dollars and where the Entry Fee was payable in April 2012, it is to be paid in June 2011 - ten months earlier, but the amount is just USD100,000 - a reduction of USD1.2million. A late entry fee of USD200,000 has been set.
The Performance Bonds (payable next year in April and July, but by way of first demand draft - rather than cash), have been slashed from a total of USD3million to just USD1million. The basis of payment of these too have been changed with the first payment being required of USD200,000 (previously USD1.5million) in April 2011.
The second payment of USD800,000 (previously USD1.5million in July 2011) is now not required to be lodged until December 2011.
In total the performance bonds are now USD1million rather than USD 3million and the payment time has been stretched by five months.
The moves come as a result of comment from the recent Competitors Forum, and are expected to generate up to three more entries, in the near future, over and above the five (including the Defender) which have already been lodged and accepted.
The changes to the Protocol, made largely as a result of input from the Competitors Forum run to nine pages click here?nid=78145
The statement issued by the America's Cup Event organisers reads: Several cost-reducing amendments to the America’s Cup rules have been adopted, following recommendations from the Competitor Forum, as well as prospective teams.
To maintain an open dialogue with current and potential teams, America’s Cup Race Management (ACRM) has hosted two briefings to gain insight into the needs of teams. Further discussions between ACRM and the Competitor Forum have resulted in amendments to the Rules that will reduce costs for participants.
'These changes are designed to allow the teams put their initial investments into building their teams and boats,' said Iain Murray, CEO, America’s Cup Race Management (ACRM) and Regatta Director for the 34th America’s Cup. 'We are here to help the teams and to ensure that every dollar will be well spent.'
Key points of the Rule Amendments
- Reduce entry fee by USD1.2million and bond requirements by USD2million
- Increase the equipment that ACRM will ship for Competitors to America’s Cup World Series venues
- Give Competitors an additional three months to build their first AC72
- Provide Competitors two additional months with common AC72 design team
The amended Protocol can be found at www.americascup.com/official-documents/
Details of the Rule changes were revealed by Iain Murray and Richard Worth, the Chairman of the America’s Cup Event Authority, as they participated in a panel discussion at the World Yacht Racing Forum on Wednesday afternoon in Portugal.