Law and disorder

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The Independent Online
The row over Syd Fischer's sacking of Chris Law and his replacement by Neville Wittey was set to escalate last night as the challengers for the Louis Vuitton Cup began their second round of trial races for the America's Cup in San Diego.

A statement from Fischer's Sydney '95 syndicate said: "Chris Law was steering the yacht at the start and for more than 80 per cent of the last race of Round Robin One. The implications of this are clear in the light of his allegations."

No mention is made of the allegations Law made, which concern changes to the rudder of the yacht, which are expressly forbidden. Nor has any move been made by the international jury to investigate.

Law's replacement by Wittey, until now a member of the panel of international umpires, has enraged the French, who plan to ask the International Yacht Racing Union to revoke Wittey's licence if he takes the helm because they feel he was given privileged and confidential information when he was an international umpire.

The jury is also causing anger among Team New Zealand and rival Kiwi Chris Dickson's Tag Heuer syndicate, whose request, that Japanese changes to their yacht be investigated on the grounds that they virtually had produced a new boat, was rejected becauseit had been lodged too late.