[Source: Alinghi] (New York, Monday 28 January) Société Nautique de Genève (SNG), the 33rd America’s Cup defending yacht club, submitted further evidence to the New York Supreme Court today in support of a court order declaring the Golden Gate Yacht Club (GGYC) challenge invalid.
This submission, which Justice Cahn invited on the 23 January, demonstrates through expert testimony that a “keel yacht” cannot be categorised as a multi-hull, as implied in the ambiguous and contradictory GGYC challenge certificate.
The challenge certificate is a critical document required under the Deed of Gift that provides the Defender with an accurate description of the challenging vessel, while allowing at least 10 months to design and build the defending yacht.
In its certificate, the GGYC describes its challenging vessel as a “keel yacht”, a term used in the sailing world to distinguish from multi-hulls, however the GGYC are saying that they propose to challenge in a multi-hull. Under the Deed of Gift, GGYC must race in the vessel described in its certificate. Any ambiguity or confusion means non-compliance with the Deed of Gift and therefore renders the certificate and challenge invalid.
“The level of scrutiny being applied to the GGYC certificate must be equal to the level applied to the requirements of a yacht club to become Challenger of Record as per the Deed of Gift,” says Lucien Masmejan, lead counsel for SNG. He adds: “It was the GGYC’s decision to bring and to keep this matter in court thus obliging the SNG, as trustee, to defend the integrity of the America’s Cup through all available means.”
Looking ahead to the 33rd America’s Cup, SNG and Alinghi maintain their long standing goal of holding a multi-challenge event in 2011 in Valencia along with the 12 other entered challengers who subscribe to the rules and regulations presented in November 2007.