America’s Cup: Iain Murray appointed as Regatta Director
Published on April 30th, 2020
Renowned international yachtsman and regatta official Iain Murray has been appointed the independent Regatta Director for the 36th America’s Cup presented by Prada, the Prada Cup Challenger Selection Series, and the America’s Cup World Series Auckland including the Christmas Race.
Jointly appointed by the Defender Emirates Team New Zealand and the Challenger of Record (COR36), Murray is taking over from John Craig, who stepped down from the position late last year. This will be the third time that Murray has held this prominent position, after having been appointed from 2010 to 2017 in the dual role of Regatta Director (34th & 35th America’s Cup) & CEO of America’s Cup Race Management (ACRM).
In his capacity of Regatta Director, Murray will also oversee the training of all personnel and volunteers involved in the racing, security, rescue, and on-water management of different areas.
With his solid background and reputation of yacht designer, skipper and yachtsman – including the participation in four America’s Cup campaigns and several world championships in different classes – Murray is a unanimously respected figure in the world of international yachting, and the America’s Cup in particular.
Grant Dalton, CEO of Emirates Team New Zealand: “It is very gratifying for us to have secured the services of such a respected official as Iain as he brings a wealth of experience and integrity to the role of Regatta Director with a proven track record over the past two America’s Cup cycles. Particularly in his (18ft skiff class) Colour 7 days, Iain was my hero, I don’t think we ever beat him.”
Matteo Plazzi, Technical Director at COR 36: “I have known Iain for many years and I have witnessed his deep knowledge, competence, and understanding of yachting and racing. The experience as Regatta Director he has developed in two ‘foiling’ America’s Cup cycles and the fairness he demonstrated during those years will be a prominent asset of paramount importance for conducting the racing with this unprecedented class of yachts.”
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36th America’s Cup
In addition to Challenges from Italy, USA, and Great Britain that were accepted during the initial entry period (January 1 to June 30, 2018), eight additional Notices of Challenge were received by the late entry deadline on November 30, 2018. Of those eight submittals, entries from Malta, USA, and the Netherlands were also accepted. Here’s the list:
• Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL)
• Luna Rossa (ITA) – Challenger of Record
• American Magic (USA)
• INEOS Team UK (GBR)
• Malta Altus Challenge (MLT) – WITHDRAW
• Stars + Stripes Team USA (USA)
• DutchSail (NED) – WITHDRAW
Of the three late entries, only Stars+Stripes USA remains committed, but they still must complete the entry fee payment process before they will be eligible to race. They have allegedly made their initial payment but as a late entry challenger under the Protocol, they also have a liability to pay a US$1million late entry fee due in installments by October 1, 2019. However, it is not yet confirmed if they have paid the fee, nor is there any knowledge of a boat being actively built or sailing team training.
Key America’s Cup dates:
✔ September 28, 2017: 36th America’s Cup Protocol released
✔ November 30, 2017: AC75 Class concepts released to key stakeholders
✔ January 1, 2018: Entries for Challengers open
✔ March 31, 2018: AC75 Class Rule published
✔ June 30, 2018: Entries for Challengers close
✔ August 31, 2018: Location of the America’s Cup Match and The PRADA Cup confirmed
✔ August 31, 2018: Specific race course area confirmed
✔ November 30, 2018: Late entries deadline
✔ March 31, 2019: Boat 1 can be launched (DELAYED)
✔ 2nd half of 2019: 2 x America’s Cup World Series events (CANCELLED)
✔ October 1, 2019: US$1million late entry fee deadline (NOT KNOWN)
✔ February 1, 2020: Boat 2 can be launched (DELAYED)
✔ April 23-26, 2020: First (1/3) America’s Cup World Series event in Cagliari, Sardinia (CANCELLED)
✔ June 4-7, 2020: Second (2/3) America’s Cup World Series event in Portsmouth, England (CANCELLED)
December 17-20: Third (3/3) America’s Cup World Series event in Auckland, New Zealand
January 15-February 22, 2021: The PRADA Cup Challenger Selection Series
March 6-15, 2021: The America’s Cup Match
AC75 launch dates:
September 6 – Emirates Team New Zealand (NZL), Boat 1
September 10 – American Magic (USA), Boat 1; actual launch date earlier but not released
October 2 – Luna Rossa (ITA), Boat 1
October 4 – INEOS Team UK (GBR), Boat 1