So let’s hear from America’s Cup 2013 Safety Committee member Jim Farmer, QC [Her Majesty’s Counsel learned* in the law]:
“The City of San Francisco is very unhappy with the promised financial bonanza being anything but.”
Heretofore, everything that could have gone wrong with the 2013 America’s Cup has gone wrong. All we can do now is hope that no one else dies for the sake of Larry Ellison’s ego.
And is this America’s Cup going to be the last big thing Larry Ellison does before he dies?
So there’s this – it’s the kind of thing called Harsh Reality Time:
“Much of the vision, it is now apparent, has turned to custard. Larry Ellison’s prediction that there would be a dozen or more challengers (up to 15 perhaps) looks absurd with only 3 challengers making it to the start line and one of them not yet ready to race. The City of San Francisco is very unhappy with the promised financial bonanza being anything but. The tragic death of Andrew Simpson when the first (and so far only) Artemis boat disintegrated as it collapsed has cast a pall over the Event from which even the spectacular speed of these boats is unlikely to clear away.“
And there’s this:
“One has to hope most earnestly that there is no further disaster. So far these boats have not yet raced in anger and that has to be the major concern. Two boats, each sailing at over 40 knots and closing from opposing tacks at a mark at an effective combined speed of 80 knots, is not for the faint-hearted. Getting crew down safely or out of the water from a boat that has capsized remains a serious challenge even for sailors who are well equipped, fit and trained to deal with that situation as best they can. Fortunately, sanity prevailed with one of the Regatta Director’s safety recommendations being a prohibition on corporate guests sitting on the back of one of these racing machines. How crazy was that idea in the first place?”
Oh, and there’s this:
“…it will be economics that will prevent the next edition of the Cup under Ellison’s control being a success. Three challengers this time. It is hard to see any of those challengers continuing with the same model of the Event next time. Yes, there will be others who will be happy to do the A45 thing, as there were this time, but the question will be whether (billionaires aside) more than one or two will be able to go to the next stage – which is the America’s Cup after all. And even the viability of the AC45 circuit must be uncertain. The existing model of cities paying all the costs of each mini-event, including the cost of getting the 45s there, just didn’t work this time, with a number of planned events being cancelled because of lack of financial support.”
Anyway, the point is that Appointed Mayor and Willie Brown butt-boy Ed Lee knows that this venture is a big flop, but he’s afraid to say or do anything about it.
Monstrous Big Red, a ticking time bomb that went off a couple months ago:
*Pepe: “Wow, Papa Homer, you are so learn-ed.” Homer: “It’s pronounced “learned.'”