Boat downsizing, the challengers will vote this week

From americascup.com

AC45S in San Francisco

The six teams entered in the America’s Cup will vote this week on whether to adopt a new America’s Cup Class that will significantly reduce costs.

The new America’s Cup Class under consideration is a wing-sailed, foiling catamaran between 45 and 50 feet. The boat would make its debut for racing in Bermuda in 2017.

“If these changes are adopted it seems certain new teams will join this edition of the Cup,” said Russell Coutts, the CEO of the America’s Cup Event Authority (ACEA).

“We’re trying to take as big a step as possible to reduce costs now and in the future. The good news is all six teams agree we should reduce the size of the boats to save money. However there is still some debate as to the size of the boat we should adopt.

“While some teams would prefer a smaller change that wouldn’t result in such significant cost-savings, the majority believe it is better to take a bolder step that will work for this edition of the America’s Cup and for future editions as well.

“When it comes to cost-reduction, size matters. Under 50 feet, real savings kick in on all levels: design, boat-building, sailing team and operations, so that’s why we’re looking at this range.”

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