Now hear this! Now hear this!
This is your Captain speaking. At ease.
It has come to my attention that despite my excellent and comprehensive earlier explanation, many of you are still confused as to the precise nature of the next America’s Cup series. Fortunately, some important new information is now to hand. Listen up.
My beloved partner Tennille was gracing the bar of the Cripple Creek Sailing & Croquet Club last night when Sir Ben Ainslie and Frackmeister Ratcliffe happened to drop by for a quick Singapore Sling. (Sad to say, I was unavoidably detained by the urgent need to review a website offering the friendly escort services of some decidedly picturesque young Russian ladies.)
Tennille, who may have done a certain amount of discreet lap dancing with Messrs Ratcliffe & Ainslie to extract this information, can confirm that AC37 will not be a sailing competition. The new Protocol is expected to contain revised class rules to the effect that the boats will actually be motor cars. Indicative design drawings show a carbon hull with no mast or sails, wheels at each corner and foils above water level.
Apparently, this development follows naturally from the recent news that INEOS Britannia, representing the Challenger of Record, has formed a development partnership with the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula 1 motor racing team.
As I’m sure you all know, Mercedes-AMG is the high-performance subsidiary of the famous German automotive manufacturer. Petronas is a Malaysian oil and gas company. Neither corporation has any connection with sailing whatsoever. They wouldn’t know a forestay from a hole in the ground.
My brave little Tennille tried to make that point, but it was immediately brushed aside by Sir Benjamin. “Mercedes are proven winners. It’s in their DNA”, he said. Quite right, too. Mercedes built all those wonderful big open cars for the SS. That turned out pretty well, didn’t it?
Amplifying this automotive theme the boss of the Mercedes F1 Team, Toto Wolff, described the America’s Cup as “Formula One on water”. Immediately a shout of objection came from Russell Coutts and Larry Ellison who had been crying into their beers at the other end of the bar.
“Hey, you bastards! That’s us! SailGP is the real ‘Formula One on water’. Stop trying to rip us off!” But strangely, not a voice was raised in support from the usual rabble of boat bums who were also drowning their sorrows at the bar.
The only other significant news obtained by Tennille is that Lewis Hamilton is certain to helm INEOS Mercedes Benz AMG Petrones Britannia in AC37 and Sir Ben will take his place to drive for Mercedes at Le Mans.
That is all. Return to your posts and resume normal duties.
– The Captain (and Tennille)