Britain's Team Origin ready to become new official challenger to Alinghi

22nd January 2008, Comments 0 comments

Team Origin has proposed a solution to a drawn-out feud over the next America's Cup, with its own yacht being named the new official challenger to Alinghi.

22 January 2008 

VALENCIA, Spain - The Royal Thames Yacht Club said Tuesday it had lodged an official challenge with the Societe Nautique de Geneve - home club of Swiss syndicate Alinghi - looking to replace BMW Oracle Racing if the American syndicate loses a court appeal being heard in the United States.

New York State Supreme Court justice Herman Cahn is expected to rule Wednesday on whether the terms of Golden Gate Yacht Club's challenge are valid. The San Francisco-based club replaced official challenger Desafio Espanol after a court ruled that the Spanish bid was invalid.

"We believe that a real window of opportunity exists to end this situation positively and quickly," Origin head Keith Mills said in a statement. "To ignore this opportunity would result in further untold damage and could lead to a potentially hollow victory, completely debasing the value of the America's Cup as the pinnacle of the sport of sailing and stunting its ability to further develop in the future."

Origin said it wants to work with both Alinghi and BMW Oracle Racing in setting up a new deal that would see the 33rd edition sailed in Valencia in 2011 under the existing class of boats. Alinghi and Desafio Espanol had proposed radical changes to the yacht's design.

Alinghi beat Emirates Team New Zealand in July to retain the Auld Mug in what was considered one of the most exciting America's Cup in recent history.

[Copyright ap 2008]

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