Luna Rossa threatens withdrawal from the America’s Cup
There’s never a dull moment with the 35th edition of the America’s Cup: as well as the contentious rules that affected Team Oracle and the economic problems of Team France and Team New Zealand, a new wave of problems is threatening the famous competition.
A press release dated 25/03/2015 and published by the America’s Cup Event Authority (ACEA) announced the possibility that the 35th America’s Cup will abandon the use of the large AC62 catamaran (which all teams had agreed to use on 5th June 2014), and instead they want to use the AC45 catamaran: the light full foiling catamaran that will used in the opening race of the regatta in Cagliari from 4th to 7th June 2015 by the six participating teams. The change proposed by the defender Oracle Team, will move the goalposts for the Luna Rossa Team, who have an advantage in the building of the giant multihull AC62 with respect to the other competitors. The Luna Rossa Team is strongly against changing the rules before the start of the game whereas the others team are in favour of the proposal. The Italian Team is basing its objection on the fact that any changes have to be agreed unanimously. Moreover, the Luna Rossa Team has no intention of defending its position in court saying that “Sport has no place in court”. This decision has led the Luna Rossa Team to announce their ultimatum: if the existing rules are not respected the team will leave the competition. This will of course compromise also the opening ceremony in Cagliari, the training base of the Luna Rossa Team. The motivation of the proposal comes from the Americans team’s desire to reduce the cost of the competition: with the AC45 Catamarans having lower building and running costs than the AC62 Catamarans.
However, the suspicion among the public is is that this tactic has a darker motive. After the enthusiasm of the last few days, expressed by the Skipper of the Luna Rossa Team Max Sirena, who was expressed his belief and determination to take the cup home, it looks like the other participating teams are trying to stop this possibility.
The final decision is expected by Monday 30th March 2015, when it will be discovered if the change proposed by Team Oracle will be accepted. On that day we will find out the fate of the Luna Rossa Team and the fate of the dignity of the America’s Cup.