From our friends at Bloomberg.
Dec. 5 — BMW-Oracle says that grammar is on
its side in a lawsuit over the rules for the next America’s Cup,
sailing’s oldest event.
Lawyers for the yachting syndicate, in a filing today with
the New York State Court of Appeals, said the Deed of Gift
governing the Cup requires that the winner negotiate rules for
the next regatta with an established yacht club. Ignoring that
provision threatens the integrity of the event, they said.
BMW-Oracle contends that Alinghi, which currently holds the
cup, negotiated “unfair” rules for the event with an official
challenger, a Spanish club, that hadn’t previously held a
regatta and was incorporated days before filing its challenge.“Elementary grammar and syntax” indicate that the
challenging yacht club should satisfy the deed’s criteria “at
the time of challenge,” BMW-Oracle said in court papers, noting
that the Spanish club “does not even deny that it is a shell
entity,” without boats, facilities or even a telephone number.
Alinghi and 10 challengers in October appealed to BMW-
Oracle owner Larry Ellison to end his lawsuit. The 17-month-old
dispute between Ellison and Alinghi’s Swiss billionaire backer
Ernesto Bertarelli has delayed another edition of the 157-year-
old event. Oral arguments are set for Feb. 10.
Alinghi beat Team New Zealand off Valencia, Spain, last
year to earn the right to organize the next edition of the event
and plans to hold it in Valencia in 2010. Under recent
proposals, the teams will build only one boat each, about 10
feet (3 meters) shorter than previous boats, and use less
equipment and fewer sailors. – Aaron Kuriloff.