While San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to back the Mayor’s revised, and a little less generous, bid to bring the America’s Cup to San Francisco in 2013, the voters that really matter seem to be balking as BMW Oracle Racing and the Golden Gate Yacht Club (GGYC) have reengaged Newport, Rhode Island in negotiations.
[Tom Ehman, a member of the America’s Cup committee and the Golden Gate Yacht Club board] acknowledged that negotiations with San Francisco leaders “have not gone as well as we [had] hoped,” leading organizers to reexamine sites that were initially in the running, including Newport.
The [R.I. Economic Development Corporation] had submitted an application for pre-regatta events leading up to the final races in 2013 that organizers found “impressive,” said Ehman. “Maybe it’s better than San Francisco’s.”
Then again, perhaps it’s for the better (if not the not), for as a plugged-in tipster writes:
The next America’s Cup, scheduled to be held in September, 2013 is in serious trouble.
No, it’s not that the GGYC has not picked a site to hold the races…It’s that the $1,300,000 entry fee as well as the “New” 72 foot Catamaran boat is not popular with possible challengers. Only 3 teams, plus Oracle/BMW and the Italian Challenger have entered the 34th America’s Cup, as of December 17, 2010.
This minimal interest, when the previous America’s Cups have [had] 10 to 12 challengers, puts the Advertising Budgets in jeopardy. Without advertising support, the challengers can’t fund their teams, the host cities cannot raise the funds to (1) host the races or (2) make the $100 million+ in infrastructure improvements or (3) potentially host future America’s Cup events.
Instead of being the 3rd most valuable event in World Wide television, behind the Olympic Games and World Cup, with so few participants the event could become a non-event.
Site selection for the 2013 race is expected to be announced by the end of this year. And now about those fundraising promises and pledges…
∙ San Francisco Board Of Supes Unanimously Back America’s Cup Bid [SocketSite]
Free Commercially Reasonable Rents For America’s Cup As Proposed [SocketSite]
∙ America’s Cup says renewed R.I. talks not to force San Francisco to sweeten bid [pbn]
∙ San Francisco’s America’s Cup Fundraising And Property Pledge [SocketSite]