America's Cup: July 2013 Edition - Let the America's Cup Regatta begin

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The four skippers make the first pitch - America’s Cup Day at AT&T Park with the SF Giants
Welcome to Sail-World.com's ninth America's Cup Newsletter for the 34th America's Cup,

We have been on an enforced break during a major system upgrade, our apologies for the break in transmission.

A lot has happened in the past three months, which have been overshadowed by the first ever sailing death in an America’s Cup venue.

The events of May 9, 2013, sent a major tremor through the America’s Cup family, when Swedish Challenger, Artemis Racing, broke up during a capsize, around 1.00pm, killing double Olympic Medalist, Andrew 'Bart' Simpson.

We carry top international yachting correspondent, Bob Fisher’s tribute to Andrew Simpson in this edition, along with an image gallery of a few of the many highlights and successes in this sailing career.

Iain Percy (right) and Andrew Simpson (GBR), acknowledge the crowd at the medal ceremony for the Men’s Keelboat (Star) event in The London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition.

To date there has been no official release on the causes of the incident - the second capsize of an AC72 in San Francisco in seven months. The latter was even more catastrophic than the first.

Immediately a Review Committee was quickly assembled to look at both the Artemis and earlier Oracle incidents, and safety generally. An almost two week timeout was recommended by the Review Committee, but ignored in the end by Luna Rossa. Sailing has continued without serious incident.

ACEA Press conference following Artemis Racing capsize and loss of Andrew Simpson - Stephen Barclay (ACEA CEO) - Ian Murray (ACRM CEO) - Captain Matt Bliven (US Coast Gards) - Captain Tom Cleary (SFPD) / San Francisco (USA) / 10-05-2013

That Committee did not actually report, due to legal reasons, and the task fell to the Regatta Director Iain Murray, who compiled a schedule of 37 Recommendations. Sail-World understands that 34 of these were agreed to by the teams, with the remainder – relating to AC72 Class Rule changes and Protocol issues not being signed off.

A four day Mediation exercise conducted by two International Jury members, failed to resolve those points, and they are now destined to be heard by the International Jury, who are currently en route to San Francisco. They meet on Monday July 8 in San Francisco.

America's Cup AC72 - Team New Zealand sailing but dressed for NASCARS

We have details of the saga in this edition of Sail-World.com’s newsletter. To say that it is complicated is an understatement.

On the water all the teams have now been sailing, with Artemis being in the shed in Alameda since May 9.

At the point the Regatta Director announced the reduced Round Robin format dropping from seven rounds to five, Artemis Racing announced they would not be ready to sail in much of the Round Robin phase, and seemed set to join the Louis Vuitton Cup at the Semi-Finals.

Again there is a lot more behind this unprecedented development than in the few lines above. More detailed stories are in this newsletter.

34th America’s Cup - Luna Rossa and Emirates Team NZ

Now, two of the Challengers will contest the first month of the Louis Vuitton Cup, sailing four maybe five races in July of just an hour’s duration each. To get the points they need from the scheduled matches involving Artemis Racing, the teams will have to sail the course, alone, and finish. At stake in the Round Robin is the right to elect to progress straight through to the Final of the Louis Vuitton Cup, with the other two Challengers sailing off in the Semi-Final for the other berth in the Finals.

As it stands the business end of the America’s Cup Regatta will not really get underway until the Louis Vuitton Cup Final – a best of 13 series to be sailed in mid August.

The winner of that series takes on the defender, Oracle Team USA in the Match for the 34th America’s Cup, starting on September 7, 2013.

Ted Hood (second from left) at a media conference in the 1974 America’s Cup, others are Bob McCullough (left), Bus Mosbacher (centre), Alan Bond, and Ben Lexcen

In this edition, we note the passing of Ted Hood, on June 28 at the age of 86 years. A member of the America's Cup Hall of Fame, he was one of the unique people in America's Cup history. Hood was from an era that is sadly past. His achievement was to be involved in the highest level of many facets of the America's Cup - sailmaking and sail design, including the weaving of sail cloth; yacht design; and helming in a successful Defence against Alan Bond's Southern Cross in 1974. Quietly spoken, Hood allowed his achievements to speak rather than words. We carry an obituary in this edition.

21/06/2013 - San Francisco (USA,CA) - 34th America's Cup - Luna Rossa and ETNZ training
Stay tuned to www.sail-world.com - for the latest updates on the progress of the America's Cup teams. Depending on the racing and other developments, we will up the frequency of this newsletter. Regardless we will continue to bring you the latest news and developments on www.sail-world.com

Good sailing!

Richard Gladwell .
Sail-World's America's Cup News Editor

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21/06/2013 - San Francisco (USA,CA) - 34th America's Cup - Oracle and ETNZ train today on the Bay

21/06/2013 - San Francisco (USA,CA) - 34th America's Cup - Oracle and ETNZ train today on the Bay