Racing in the PRADA Cup Final between INEOS TEAM UK and Luna Rossa is on hold due to a snap lockdown in Auckland. The city has now been moved from Alert Level 3 to Alert Level 2.
Luna Rossa has urged America’s Cup Events to request an exemption to carry on the Final of the PRADA Cup. ACE are discussing with the Authorities different options, including the postponement of the racing to the 26 February. The Italian team is trying to ensure that the PRADA Cup Final resumes as early as 19 February offering its full support to ACE and to the local authorities to immediately implement the Level 3 Alert management plan. These plans provide that, in a level 3 Covid-19 alert, the AC36 Village shall be closed and the regattas shall resume “behind closed doors”, without any public, as it already happens for many international sporting events.
In this context, and in compliance with the regulations, they see no reason to further delay the regatta as scheduled, giving both teams the opportunity to complete the number of races required by the series within the terms and deadlines imposed by the racing calendar. The Italians point out that otherwise Rule A2.3(b) of Appendix A to the World Sailing Racing Rules of Sailing America’s Cup edition Version 3.03 for the 36th America’s Cup presented by PRADA would come into play: “….the winner is the team with the highest score at the date of the final scheduled date” – would apply.
Leading the British team 4-0, Luna Rossa would, in that situation, automatically go through to the America’s Cup Match.
In a statement INEOS TEAM UK say: “INEOS TEAM UK respect the decision communicated by ACE to delay the PRADA Cup racing due to the current Covid-19 alert level in Auckland. The result of the PRADA Cup final should be won and decided on the water in the agreed format of first to win 7 races. INEOS TEAM UK fully respect the government’s decision to curtail racing until it is safe to do so and would support a delay in the competition if that is required. The solution put forward by ACE is sensible in ensuring both the safety of all in New Zealand, and the integrity of the sporting competition. INEOS TEAM UK will continue with our race preparations and be ready to race when it is safe to do so.”