Artemis Racing, the Challenger of Record for the 34th America's Cup, have lost an appeal to the International Jury over their earlier daggerboard/hydrofoil measurement decision.
On October 7, the International Jury ruled on an application from Emirates Team New Zealand, that the Measurement Committee had exceeded its jurisdiction in issuing an interpretation that changed a Class Rule governing the AC72 catamarans to be used in the America's Cup Regatta starting in July 2013.
The key to that decision was whether or not the daggerboards used by the catamarans should be either raised or lowered when calculating the displacement of the canoe body of each hull of the catamarans.
The rule said that the canoe body could not be less then 45% of the total displacement. (Class Rule 1K states: hull means a canoe body, part of which displaces 45% or more of the AC72 Yacht’s displaced volume when floating in measurement condition;)
The Measurement Committee had made the ruling that the canoe body (normally the plain hull of a boat, without keel or rudder attached) should have its displacement measured with the dagger boards down.
Because the dagger boards have positive buoyancy, this ruling would have had the effect of reducing the size of the dagger boards, and possibly limiting the ability of the AC72 to sail in a hydrofoiled mode.
In the original decision Emirates Team NZ and Luna Rossa argued against the Challenger of Record and Defender Oracle Team USA, claiming that the Measurement Committee had effectively changed a class rule, which they were not permitted to do.
Surprisingly, regatta organisers America's Cup Regatta Management lodged a submission in support of the New Zealand and Italian teams - an unprecedented move which is understood to have displeased both the Challenger of Record and Defender. ACRM for the first time in America's Cup history, has been established as a body independent of the competitors and made a submission as it saw fit, rather than in bygone days when it, or its equivalent would have taken a position on such matters which would always have been solidly behind the Defender.
With a 3-2 majority in favour of the Emirates Team New Zealand position, it was possibly not surprising that the International Jury sided with the majority view, and ruled that the daggerboards could be in the raised position to calculate the canoe body displacement. (Such a rule is necessary as being the only real way to determine that a boat is a catamaran type (two equal hulls) and not a trimaran or proa or some other sort of multihull.)
The original Jury Decision was greeted with dismay by both the Challenger of Record and Defender.
Not surprisingly the Challenger of Record, who would normally speak for all, or a majority of the Challenger, decided to lodge an appeal to the same International Jury, claiming that they had committed the same error they accused the measurement Committee of doing - namely to effectively change a class rule, and had exceeded their authority.
The Jury Decision summarised the Artemis Racing claim thus:
6. AR (Artemis Racing) claimed that the Jury amended the CR (Class Rule) by noting in paragraph 56 of its Decision in AC16 (original decision #) that the Decision would have the effect of removing the '45%' limitation in CR 1.4(k) which was to allow a maximum of 10% for displacement of foils.
7. AR also submitted that neither the CR nor the Protocol give the Jury the right to remove or amend a CR. They submitted that the MC (Measurement Committee) in issuing PI (Public Interpretation) 22 had interpreted CR 1.4(k) without changing any of its words. To amend a CR requires the unanimous consent of all the Competitors.
8. AR further submitted they have spent two years researching and designing their AC72 Yacht based on the volume limits depicted in CR 1.4(k) and the removal of such limits 'renders much of that work meaningless, and sways the balance of foiling vs non-foiling in the favor of the foiling solution.' AR also claimed 'this Amendment unnecessarily favors the interest of on competitor.'
However the International Jury was not persuaded by the arguments advanced by Artemis Racing and supported by Oracle Team USA, and dismissed the claim that it had erred in its original Decision.
In the Discussion section of its decision on the appeal the International Jury noted that it had the right to make a determination under the Protocol, and that all it had done in its original decision was to remove
the additional conditions prescribed by the Measurement Committee, including the need for the daggerboards to be fully lowered.
The International Jury rules that all it had done was to reinstate the Class Rule as it had originally been written, and therefore the Jury’s Decision did not change a Class Rule as Artemis Racing had alleged.
The appeal by Artemis Racing was dismissed.
Click here?nid=104080 to read the latest Decision and click here?nid=104080 to read the original Decision of October 7, 2012
For the full AC Class rule click here?nid=104080
by Richard Gladwell - 10:04 AM Sun 25 Nov 2012 GMT
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