Alessandra Pandarese, Mascalzone's legal advisor, comments on the last oral hearing in NY Court
Mascalzone Latino published today on their website a brief interview with Alessandra Pandarese, their legal advisor, concerning the last oral hearing in the America's Cup court case that took place two weeks ago in Albany. The interview was done in Italian and the translation is mine, meaning there could be some small errors or mistakes. Nevertheless, the general picture is crystal clear. Pandarese sees a victory for GGYC as the only positive outcome and hopes the judges decide in favor of the American yacht club.
Question: What is your view on the oral hearings?
Alessandra Pandarese: The times for oral arguments were very, very short and each of the 2 parts had 15 minutes available that were divided according to their plan. First of all, GGYC's lawyer had 10 minutes then SNG's and CNEV's lawyers split their 15 minutes and finally, GGYC's lawyer used her remaining 5 minutes for her closing arguments.
Time was so short that it was impossible to repeat written arguments and I think that during the audience there has been a barrage of questions from the judges who showed they had in-depth knowledge of the issue. The arguments concentrated on the key element, that is whether the prerequisites had to be satisfied when the challenge was presented and in particular whether the annual regatta had to have taken place before the challenge was presented. Obviously, Alinghi's position was the opposite and the questions focused mainly on these points. Still, the judges asked for clarifications regarding the mechanism in the America's Cup with which challenges can become multiple challenges. In my view, GGYC's defense showed in an efficient way that the mutual consent aspects are succedent and that the challenge must meet the prerequisites the moment it is received by the defender.
Question: What are the possible outcomes?
Alessandra Pandarese: We have to wait for the decision. The decision could have the most varied content. We hope the court decides in the sense it approves GGYC's view, which we have supported and consider to be the one that guarantees a future for the America's Cup by guaranteeing that no ad hoc challenger can be established by the defender. Only that way there can be a real and true counter party, something that hasn't been verified in this case. We hope that a general principle be established in that sense,
Obviously, everything lies in the hands of the judges. They could decide not to accept GGYC's view and rule in favor of Alinghi. There are even intermediate outcomes such as the possibility the court sends the case to a higher level in order to obtain further clarifications. This is a gray area and I'd rather not consider it. The sailing community and the America's Cup community want to have a decision that is either black or white.
Question: What will happen if GGYC wins and what if SNG wins?
Alessandra Pandarese: IF BMW Oracle wins there are two possible outcomes. Either the Deed-of-Gift match, as we all know, or a negotiation with the Defender, something that Oracle is willing to do, as stated to the judges. As a result, it is possible to have a future multi-challenger event. If Alinghi wins, they have stated numerous times they would hold a multi-challenger event but the rules are under discussion. These are the most probable outcomes although they are not sure.
Question: Can the court rule against both parties, GGYC and SNG?
Alessandra Pandarese: No matter what the issue could be in a legal case, commercial or sports, there can always be surprises. In my opinion this is a very marginal outcome but still an issue raised by Alinghi in the case concerns the lack of clarity in GGYC's certificate and challenge. As a result, in theory this is also an issue to be considered by the court. As we said there can be intermediate outcomes but we will have to face them once they are made public. For that reason we'll have to wait for the decision.