NZ government will honour Emirates Team deal

Gritting its teeth and clearly unhappy, the New Zealand government has confirmed it will honour a pledge by the previous administration to support Emirates Team New Zealand’s challenge for the 2013 America’s Cup.

The taxpayers will stump up NZ$36m (about £17.5m) at a time when they are facing both public debt and coping with the consequences of the earthquakes, still continuing, which caused death and destruction in Christchurch. The country is also more focussed on this year’s Rugby World Cup.

John Key’s government had taken legal advice to see whether it could break the contract, which was drawn up after the team reached the finals of the 2007 Cup in Valencia and comes out of not the sports budget but the ministry of economic development.

The country hopes that winning back the cup it first won in San Diego in 1995 and successfully defended in Auckland in 2000 would provide another significant boost to both the regional and national economy. ETNZ, not short of good legal advice, had drawn up a watertight agreement but had delayed the announcement sufficiently to separate it from the Christchurch disaster.

Talks at ministerial level in France have so far failed to elicit government support for either of the two challenger groups announced in that country and it would have been inconceivable that the British government would have given money to the British challenge abandoned by Sir Keith Mills last autumn. The Team Origin bid was very sceptical it could even attract funding from the National Lottery, which supports sailing in the form of the Olympic squad.

The 14 challengers, some yet to be named, have until the end of the month to stump up the first payments of their performance bonds and confirm, with a deposit, orders for the AC45 catamarans which will be used for the first set of regattas.

For the Volvo round the world race, Rob Greenhalgh will join skipper Ian Walker’s Abu Dhabi team, having been on ABN Amro and Puma in the two previous races. And top French sailor Thomas Coville will exchange his Sodebo shirt for a set of Groupama oilskins for the Volvo.

In Charleston, Chris Stanmore-Major coped with storm conditions 15 miles – he had to turn the boat round and run in front of the weather at one stage - from the finish of the Velux 5 Oceans leg from Punta de Este, Uruguay, taking third place.

And in Barcelona Alex Thomson’s Hugo Boss, sailed by Andy Meiklejohn and Wouter Verbraak after Thomson was first hit by appendicitis and then stayed with his partner when their first child was born with a heart problem, finished the Barcelona two-handed round the world race in seventh place.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen
RuPaul interview: The drag star on being inspired by Bowie, never fitting in, and saying the first thing that comes into your head

RuPaul interview

The drag star on being inspired by Bowie, never fitting in, and saying the first thing that comes into your head
Secrets of comedy couples: What's it like when both you and your partner are stand-ups?

Secrets of comedy couples

What's it like when both you and your partner are stand-ups?
Satya Nadella: As Windows 10 is launched can he return Microsoft to its former glory?

Satya Nadella: The man to clean up for Windows?

While Microsoft's founders spend their billions, the once-invincible tech company's new boss is trying to save it
The best swimwear for men: From trunks to shorts, make a splash this summer

The best swimwear for men

From trunks to shorts, make a splash this summer
Mark Hix recipes: Our chef tries his hand at a spot of summer foraging

Mark Hix goes summer foraging

 A dinner party doesn't have to mean a trip to the supermarket
Ashes 2015: With an audacious flourish, home hero Ian Bell ends all debate

With an audacious flourish, the home hero ends all debate

Ian Bell advances to Trent Bridge next week almost as undroppable as Alastair Cook and Joe Root, a cornerstone of England's new thinking, says Kevin Garside
Aaron Ramsey interview: Wales midfielder determined to be centre of attention for Arsenal this season

Aaron Ramsey interview

Wales midfielder determined to be centre of attention for Arsenal this season
Community Shield: Arsene Wenger needs to strike first blow in rivalry with Jose Mourinho

Community Shield gives Wenger chance to strike first blow in rivalry with Mourinho

As long as the Arsenal manager's run of games without a win over his Chelsea counterpart continues it will continue to dominate the narrative around the two men
The unlikely rise of AFC Bournemouth - and what it says about English life

Unlikely rise of AFC Bournemouth

Bournemouth’s elevation to football’s top tier is one of the most improbable of recent times. But it’s illustrative of deeper and wider changes in English life
A Very British Coup, part two: New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel

A Very British Coup, part two

New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel
Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Icy dust layer holds organic compounds similar to those found in living organisms