Monday, November 02, 2009

Société Nautique de Genève to appeal decision on Ras Al Khaimah for 33rd America’s Cup

Update 10pm Valencia time: Alinghi's lawyers will present the appeal on Wednesday and will only concern Justice Kornreich's decision on the venue of the match. According to a spokesperson of the Defender of the 33rd America's Cup, SNG's lawyers will argue that Justice Kornreich selectively applies the Deed of Gift in her decision. If the Deed of Gift prohibits a match in Ras Al-Khaimah in February, due to its location in the northern hemisphere, why should a match take place in Valencia, also in the northern hemisphere? According to the Swiss team Ras Al-Khaimah is a "legitimate and suitable" venue for a match in February.

As stated in their press release, Alinghi has applied for an expedited appeal, which could result in a decision being issued within 30 to 45 days. As a result, according to Alinghi, with a decision around mid December, the schedule would still be on track for a race on the 8th of February next year.

[Source: Alinghi] The Defender of the 33rd America’s Cup, Société Nautique de Genève (SNG), is to appeal New York Supreme Court Justice Kornreich’s decision of 30 October rejecting Ras Al Khaimah in the United Arab Emirates as the venue for the 33rd America’s Cup. SNG has applied for an expedited appeal to avoid any delay to the February 2010 Deed of Gift Match.

The choice of Ras Al Khaimah was made based on the plain language of Justice Cahn’s (Kornreich’s predecessor) May 2008 Court Order that ruled the location of the 33rd America’s Cup Match to be in ‘Valencia or any other location selected by the SNG’.

The Emirati venue was selected by the Defender for several reasons: the suitability of the weather conditions for a February Deed of Gift Match; the infrastructure offered by the country and the experience the UAE brings in organising world class sporting events.

Note to the editor:

While the Deed of Gift stipulates that racing for the America’s Cup between 1 November and 1 May must take place in the Southern Hemisphere, Justice Cahn’s 12 May 2008 New York Supreme Court Order ‘that the location of the match be in Valencia or any other location selected by the SNG’ led the America’s Cup defending yacht club, Société Nautique de Genève, to select Ras Al Khaimah in the United Arab Emirates.

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At 9:45 PM, Blogger WetHog said...

This decision by Alinghi does not surprise me based on the stakes involved, but let this put to rest Alinghi's bullshit argument that it is only BMWO that uses the courts for their gain.

At 9:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So much for "we will not appeal" and "win it on the water".

Who is SNG trying to

At 10:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is disappointing. They have no chance of winning that, American team, American court. Although they are defender and are sick of being pushed around. Who wouldn't? This cannot end well though, just the delay of the inevitable.

We are waiting to revive the Cup to its original state, but until Alinghi backs on down and sails in Valencia, or BMW backs down and sails in RAK (which will never happen) we are not going to be able to do that. They could argue in court forever if they wanted. If only we could find someone mature enough to back down.

Would anyone wish to compromise sailing in Valencia in May? Suits BMW's location and the Deeds rules. Alinghi have already won there so it shouldn't be a problem for them.

At 10:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Valid point questioning the "we will not appeal" and "win it on the water". On the other hand Alinghi doesn’t have much of a choice.

Let's assume they have to sail in Valencia with their catamaran build for lighter winds the chance too loose is very high.

At this point I think it doesn’t matter if Alinghi will be successful with the appeal. The 33rd America's cup is a disaster anyway and I referring to the court decisions.

I was very surprised reading the verdict of the NY Supreme Court saying: "the location of the match be in Valencia or any other location selected by the SNG"

It would haven't cost a lot adding the sentence "in accordance to the DOG" or "Mutual consent" if they really mean it that way.

Any young lawyer learns to properly formulate their sentences in legally binding documents, why can't this doo a Judge of the NY Supreme Court?

If BMWO wins with probably stronger winds in Valencia is because they managed to avoid Alinghi's trap in RAK. If Alinghi wins in RAK then we can say thank you to the New York Supreme Court who managed to bring even more room for interpretation in too the DOG.

Considering this point it's probably better for the future to sort this thing out now. Would be a pity for the future of the AC to leave this unclear formulation.

At 11:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

to 10:42 PM anon

I think it is not fair to blame Judge Cahn for this disaster.
Alinghi new that it was risky to select RAK as a venue. They had the opportunity to ask Judge Cahn for a clarification in regard to the venue. They didn't cover their bases here and in addition built a boat that possibly has a very small design window in regards to stronger winds and waves. This was their strategy, it didn't work out, and it looks as if they are now paying the price. Judge Cahn is certainly not responsible for their misjudgement of the situation.

At 11:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Because both teams agreed to Valencia by mutual consent. How stupid are the Alighi lawyers???

At 2:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Any bets that no one in the Alinghi camp will remember mentioning that they would race in Valencia? If Justice Cahn had intended to allow Alinghi to select any venue it wanted regardless of hemisphere, he would have had no reason to specify Valencia in his order. The Alinghi boys are finally realizing that they've screwed the pooch and are desperately hoping to delay the match so that they can race their lake cat in its element. Valencia in February could possibly push their weather-specific design past its breaking point.

Good luck with the appeal fellas! You'll need it!!!

At 4:30 AM, Anonymous CheeseBurger said...

The DOG says that you cannot race in winter in the northern emisphere. This does not mean that the Defender can be forced to race in the southern emisphere, but that the race must wait until May.
Otherwise, a challenger could force a US defender to race in the southern emisphere, depending on when the challenge was presented! This is obviously not the case.
So is SNG selects Valencia or RAK, the race should be held in May.

At 6:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good on 'em.

At 9:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Cheeseburger,

the DoG says one cannot race in winter in the northern hemisphere AND the race needs to take place 10 months after a challenge was launched (unless there is mutual agreement on a different date). So far, all but one AC were based on mutual agreement and not on the DoG.

At 1:42 PM, Anonymous Captain Morgan said...


You forget that the original GGYC Challenge set the dates for July. No Problem in the NH. It was only after SNG appealed that we ended up racing in Feb. Because SNG lost the appeal and a party cannot benefit form a delay they caused, they are stuck racing in Feb. And because they also chose a non-compliant location, they also cannot gain a time advantage.

At 1:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Come on Alinghi, it is 10:0 now for BMWOracle. It is finally time to accept that your strategy is not working out, cut the losses and go sailing to "work it out on the water"

At 2:01 PM, Blogger Renaud said...

Justice Cahn, Justice Kornreich, who's the next challenger !!!

It's strange the way the US Justice is working, seeing from Europe. Can't they be consistent for once or US Juges enjoy to take part to the game !

At 2:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

ChesseBurger is totally right. The 10 month period is a minimum, so just as CHesseBurger says, the date must be chosen according to the prevailing hemisphere. i.e. North for the SNG, hence a race in May.

At 2:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems to me that smart Judge Cahn smelled the foul play off Ali with their fake yacht club and gave this specific order on purpose to see if they are the real CHEATERS.
And so it does comes out now

Cheers 1407

At 3:31 PM, Anonymous JamieF said...

Dear Renaud,

I am from Europe and I have no difficulties understanding the decisions made by Justice Cahn and Justice Kornreich. However, I find it rather inappropriate and somewhat arrogant (if not pathetic), if people from Europe "suggest" that the legal or political systems in Europe would be, in any way, superior to that of other countries (in this case the US).
I am under the impression that Alinghi has hired professional (and very expensive) lawyers to cope with the specifics of a “foreign” court system (and if I am not mistaken, these lawyers are even part of a substantial US law firm). If Alinghi can not handle this legal system (or does not like it) they should stay out of US courts and engage in mutual consent negotiations with the challenger.
Please don't insult the integrity of other nations and their respective judicial system just because your favorite Americas Cup team is using a poor legal strategies...

At 3:42 PM, Anonymous JamieF said...

to 2:04 PM anon

strange, but I can't find this word "minimum" in the DoG

I quote:
"The Challenging Club shall give ten months' notice, in writing, naming the days for the proposed races"
It doesn't say anything about postponing the race if the hemisphere requirement is not convenient to the defender.

I am really getting bored with you guys...

At 6:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jamie F

you make a good point about Alinghi staying out of the US courts if they don't like the system. By the same measure, perhaps the Americans should stay out of the AC if they don't like the system. Remember there were many more teams who were willing to sign (did sign) and race in October 2007. It was the Americans who refused to back off as they wanted to play the US legal system.

At 6:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you are bored, then quit!

You do not even understand what Renaud says. Not that the European courst system is better or not, only that a US judge will favor a US team in those circumstances. Nothing to do with Alinghi's counsels.

But you are so bored you are not even able to understand.

At 7:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, obviously the Americans like the system (or at least can handle it). After all they lead 10:0 in court. It seems to be Alinghi that is having problems with it conceptually (in terms of interpreting the Deed) and strategically.

At 7:20 PM, Anonymous JamieF said...

to 6:59 PM anon

after reading your lines I am not so sure any more that you understand Renaud. You certainly did not get the point I was trying to make.

At 9:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To all who are complaining about the way this case is being handled in the NYSC, shut up! The nationality of the team bringing the challenge is irrelevant. The NYSC is the Trustee of the DoG. No other court could have enforced a decision under the DoG. They lack the standing to do so.

Didn't EB say that Alinghi wouldn't appeal when CNEV was tossed? Yet back to court he went. He's clearly hoping to postpone the races so he can pick a venue that his boat has been designed for. RAK is not Deed compliant in February, but someone within Alinghi must have consented to Valencia when the case was under Justice Cahn. Otherwise why would he have included Valencia in his Order to race in February as an allowable venue

SNG's MO has been to push out one-sided, unfair protocols and rules (most likely designed to send GGYC back to the courts) then stand on the steps of the courthouse and give soundbites about their commitment to win the Cup on the water, while GGYC wanted to win it in the courtroom.

GGYC has not asked the court to force SNG to forfeit the Cup. Their BoFD suit has requested that SNG be removed as Trustee of the Cup and an independent body manage the 33rd Cup Match. GGYC is asking for fair rules and a level playing field. The rules that have been proposed by SNG are not even their rules. SNG has never run a regatta under them. They are making them up as they go. Measurement rules based upon model yachts, taking LWL measurements without racing loads on the boat? Does anyone have an SNG rule book that can show that these rules have been used in an SNG run regatta?

SNG now complains that their rights as defender have been diminished by GGYC and the Courts, but they have no one to blame but themselves. They have taken every passage of the Court's Orders and selectively interpreted them to their benefit. If any venue in the world would have been appropriate, why the need to single out Valencia in February?

As their losses pile up in the courtroom, all they can say is "we should be allowed to race wherever we want under whatever rules we choose." Since Justice Kornreich used the word "unsportsmanlike" to describe GGYC's conduct, SNG has beaten GGYC over the head with it. I wouldn't be surprised if they described the way the GGYC sailors brushed their teeth as unsportsmanlike.

Don't get me wrong, LE and the GGYC boys are no angels, but they have shown the ability to back up their arguments. When the argument starts to get away from EB's SNG team, they tend to whine about how unsportsmanlike GGYC is being.

It's time to cut the crap and get this dog and pony show on the water. Hopefully, JK will get sound guidance and advice from the panel of sailing experts tomorrow and will put this thing to bed for good. It's time to let these two beasts loose in a best of 3, winner take all match. Do it in Auckland under RNZYS' book and be done. It is a deed compliant location and RNZYS is about as neutral asyou are going to find now. They've been in bed with both camps. The winners get the Cup and the losers go home. No more motions, trials and orders.

At 9:43 PM, Blogger folkenbolt said...

Does anybody inside SNG remember that the America's Cup deals with SAILING!?
You know ........... that thing, with sails, winches, winds, ripples, sea waves etc.?


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