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AmericaOne, 15 Others, Clear Latest Hurdle on the Road to the Cup

NEWPORT, Rhode Island (Feb. 1, 1997) — The AmericaOne Challenge for America’s Cup XXX posted its $250,000 performance bond with the America’s Cup Challenger Association (ACCA), confirming its commitment to compete in the Challenger Selection Series in Auckland, New Zealand..

Fifteen other challengers also met the January 31 deadline for posting the bond, making this a record 16 challengers from 10 countries, including six from the United States. There were 13 challengers in Perth, Australia, in 1987.

"We always knew we could count on nine to 12 challengers to post the bond, but this is amazing," said ACCA President Dyer Jones. "This is going to make for a very exciting Challenger Selection Series."

Of the original 18 challenging yacht clubs, only Switzerland’s Société Nautique Rolloise failed to clear this latest hurdle on the road to the America’s Cup. The number of challengers dropped to 16 with the merger of two of the three French groups, Société Nautique Grau-du-Roi Port Camargue and Yacht Club de Cannes, which renamed their effort the Esprit-Sud Challenge.

"This early in the planning stages it is difficult to guess at who may actually reach New Zealand," Jones added. "The performance bond gives each of the yacht clubs great incentive to get there. If they make it, the bond is returned. If they don’t it is forfeited."

The Challenger Selection Series is set to begin in late October, 1999, in Auckland, New Zealand. The proposed format includes three round-robin series, a semi-final series and a final series. The winner of the challenger trials will go on to meet New Zealand in the 30th America's Cup match, scheduled to begin Feb. 26, 2000.

The challengers are:

Australia

France

Great Britain

Hong Kong

Italy

Japan

Russia

Spain

Switzerland

United States

For additional information, see the America's Cup XXX Fact Sheet.

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