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Dates and Location for America's Cup XXX Are Announced

AUCKLAND, New Zealand (May 10, 1996)—New Zealand will defend the America's Cup in the waters off Auckland's East Coast bays in February/March 2000. The course area and dates for the best-of-nine match were confirmed today by Peter Hay, the Commodore of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron.

The racing will be held in waters which have already stood the test of international competition, in world championship events such as the One Ton and Quarter Ton Cups, along with numerous other New Zealand championships in offshore racing yachts.

The racing programme will duplicate that for the 1995 match in San Diego, with Defender and Challenger racing back-to-back on the first weekend and then slugging it out, possibly for the next two weeks, until one or other amasses five wins. The match course itself will be the same windward/leeward configuration that proved so successful in 1995, with upwind starts and downwind finishes.

"We recently announced a revised Protocol, the mutually agreed ground rules, for America's Cup XXX," said Commodore Hay. "This has been very favorably received internationally.

"The areas of water now confirmed for the match course can only further endorse New Zealand's intentions to defend the Cup on an even playing field. These are very fair sailing waters which will test the best - Defender or Challenger."

The course location is less than an hour's tow from the Viaduct Basin area of Downtown Auckland where, it is planned, the America's Cup fleet will be based in a new village-style Cup harbour. The scheduled dates for racing (all 2000) are:

       Race 1:   Saturday,  26 February
       Race 2:   Sunday,    27 February
       Race 3:   Tuesday,   29 February
       Race 4:   Thursday    2 March
       Race 5:   Saturday    4 March
       Race 6:   Sunday      5 March
       Race 7:   Tuesday     7 March
       Race 8:   Thursday    9 March
       Race 9:   Saturday   11 March
       Spare:    Sunday     12 March
       Spare:    Tuesday    14 March
       Spare:    Thursday   16 March

This is an official announcement from Team New Zealand.

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