Monday, July 23, 2007

Announcement of Valencia hosting the 33rd America's Cup is imminent

If one is to believe the various reports that appear this morning on Valencia's newspapers and the local state television channel, the announcement of the final agreement between the city and the organization of the 33rd America's Cup is imminent and could take place as early as next Wednesday.

According to the reports, the two parties have worked out the final details of the contract and Valencia will repeat as host city of the America's Cup whose 33rd edition will take place in 2009, two years from now. For that reason, Ernesto Bertarelli, head of Alinghi, is having a meeting today (Monday) at 5pm in Madrid with Spain's prime minister José Luis Zapatero. All three levels of public administration involved (central, regional and local) work in tandem and no efforts will be spared to assure Bertarelli they all are fully behind this event.

Always according to the same reports there will be two Acts held in Valencia in 2008 during the months of June and July. Unlike the 32nd edition of the world's oldest sports trophy, each team will race only once a day and only one race course will be used, the north one. Apparently, the organization will eliminate the south course and will keep all racing activity off the Malvarosa beach.

For 2009 the reports call for the Challenger Selection Series to begin in April, similarly to what took place this year. Nevertheless, the major difference lies in the name of the title sponsor of the series. According to the reports, Rolex will now take the place Louis Vuitton had occupied during the last quarter century and the series will be called "Rolex Cup", or a derivation of it.

The intention of the organization is to hold the America's Cup Match approximately in the same time frame it took place in the 32nd edition, that is from late June to early July.

None of the reports specifies any regattas or Acts outside of Valencia, although it is obvious that we should expect them. It is a feature that gave excellent results in the 32nd edition and there is no reason why it shouldn't also do in the 33rd.

The proposed 90-foot boat is also absent from any report. We think this was to be expected, given the fact that it is an issue unrelated to the talks between the organizers and the host city or cities.

Finally, the lawsuit of Golden Gate Yacht Club against the Société Nautique de Genève is not covered either by any of the reports. We are no legal experts but it is plausible that any decision by the New York supreme court could radically alter any previous schedule.



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