Delays – 2019 AC World Series cancelled?

Challenger of Record, Luna Rossa, announced in November 2018 that the first AC World Series would be in Cagliari, where their base is located, in October 2019. With delays caused by arbitration over the late challengers and structural problems with the design of the one design supplied equipment foil arms, it seems that event has been cancelled. Italy’s Giornale della Vela reports that Luna Rossa’s Technical Director, Matteo Plazzi, made the announcement at a recent Italian sailing awards ceremony.

The Protocol says there would be “possibly” one or two ACWS regattas in 2019. It also says the ACWS “shall comprise three events” in 2020. Remember that “shall” is used to indicate something mandatory. Speculation about a fourth ACWS in 2020 would require a Protocol change. Not impossible, but it would require ETNZ and Luna Rossa to agree to the change.

The Protocol requires announcing the venues for the three 2020 ACWS events by 30 November 2019. Presumably the first one will be in Cagliari in Spring. DutchSail has “requested” awarding an ACWS to The Hague / Scheveningen. Newport, Rhode Island; Long Beach, California; and Hong Kong have all been mentioned as possible venues.

DutchSail’s website shows March 2020 as the launch date for their AC75, leaving little time to learn to sail and race it safely before the first ACWS. There has been no news from Malta Altus Challenge about their AC75 launch date. Remember that the Protocol clearly states that if a challenger misses an ACWS event, they are no longer eligible for the Prada Cup Challenger Selection Series.

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This article was written and/or edited by the UK-based MIN team.

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