Sunday, March 30, 2008

End of reign looming over Alinghi

Grant Dalton doubts Alinghi will be able to challenge Oracle.
[NZHerald] Team New Zealand boss Grant Dalton says he would be surprised if America's Cup defender Alinghi are much advanced in building a 90-foot multi-hull yacht to take on Oracle in the courtroom-inspired clash likely to take place later this year.

The Cup went back into court last week after Alinghi and Oracle could not agree on a date to hold the head-to-head clash which, after Oracle's successful court challenge against Alinghi, cuts out all other challengers (including Emirates Team New Zealand). The regatta will likely be held in Valencia in July or October this year.
But Alinghi are claiming they do not have time to be ready and the matter has gone back to the New York Supreme Court - for resolution next week.

Dalton says he believes Alinghi are behind in the boat-building race.

That's in spite of the BMW Oracle syndicate saying that Alinghi chief Ernesto Bertarelli had been quoted in a newspaper in December as saying that Alinghi were "even then" preparing for a multi-hull clash in July.

"The problem is that these yachts will be an enormously stressed engineering piece of kit. It's a bit like launching a lunar satellite into space - it's no mean feat," said Dalton. By Paul Lewis Read more...

Photo / Janna Dixon