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Old 05-27-2013
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Re: Another America’s Cup entry destroyed

An interesting article:

"Non-Negotiable?
According to Ehman all the Recommendations are part of a safety plan for the event, and as such are non-negotiable by the teams, since safety will not be compromised.

Team insiders spoken to by Sail-World don’t quite see it that way, splitting the Recommendations into three areas – those that involve modification to the AC72 Class Rule which governs the measurement and design of the 72ft wingsailed catamaran that will be sailed for the first time in the 34th America’s Cup. Changes to that AC72 rule can only be done with the consent of all the teams – a simple majority is not enough.

A second group of recommendations are the changes to the Protocol, which governs the rules under which the racing for the America’s Cup and Louis Vuitton Cup’s will be conducted. Changes to the Protocol can be made by the Regatta Director after a majority vote by the Teams.

The third group is Safety Rules, which can be set arbitrarily by the Regatta Director, and to which his officials and the teams, where they are affected, must comply.

Under Ehman’s logic all the 37 Recommendations come under the Safety category, and are not subject to any negotiation or amendment. 'As for whether there will be votes on Class Rule amendments and Protocol Amendments - No. These Recommendations will become Rules.'

'These are Safety Recommendations by the Regatta Director, and they will become part of the regatta permit and therefore Rules.' He adds that until that formal process is concluded by the Coast Guard, the recommendations are just that, and are for the guidance of teams during the training period now under way.

'The Coast Guard needs to ensure that the field of play is safe, that it is safe for the competitors, and also that the event is conducted safely for spectators as well. It is concerned with the overall safe conduct of the event.'

Ehman's view aside, the bulk of the recommendations actually do fall under the Safety category and many don’t directly affect the teams at all, such as whether mark boats are used, as currently, or inflatable marks as recommended for race management - evidence that the Review Committee has looked beyond just the Artemis and Oracle incidents.

Ehman says most of the cost of the Recommendations will fall on the Organisers. These include having to devise ways of adopting LiveLine, the GPS based tracking system used for umpiring and television to run off the power available within an inflatable mark for GPS positioning. 'There are requirements of the Organising Committee, that are onerous, but at the end of the day it is safety first,' he adds.

Wind limit reduction no surprise
The process to be followed by the Coast Guard is to either approve or reject America's Cup Regatta Management's application (through the Golden Gate Yacht Club). 'They don't dictate,' explains Ehman.

Essentially what is being lodged is a Safety Plan, and it is against that laudable backdrop that some of the Recommendations are curious.

The reduction in wind limits will also go through, despite being a 10knot reduction over the ridiculously high figure previously set of 33kts. 'We wondered how it would take them to wake up to that one,' Emirates Team NZ's Grant Dalton remarked in a television news interview.

The new wind limit of 20kts for the Louis Vuitton Cup Round Robins creeping to 23 kts for the America’s Cup Match will still need a Protocol change. The new limit is a couple of knots below the international standard used in the Olympics and World Championships. Although it applies before the start only, the racing can still be cancelled after the race has started for safety issues.
....

Contrary to other reports the lower wind limit for the regatta has not changed – and cannot except by a majority vote of the teams. Of some concern is the ability to have variable start times, possibly based on forecasts but also with the perspective that one team might try an influence the start time to get 'their' conditions.

Ehman points out that if the teams do have concerns in that respect, all they have to do is to get together as sort out a new and stronger lower wind limit. 'It is not a safety issue,' he adds."

Sail-World.com : America's Cup: Review Recommendations not expected to be an easy meal

Funny, I thought the protocol could only be changed if all agree. I will have to look better at it.

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Last edited by PCP; 05-27-2013 at 10:38 AM.
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