Ernesto Bertarelli, head of defender Alinghi, has supported the cup loser Team New Zealand with a bond in the probably tens of millions. He wanted to make sure that New Zealanders would face Europe on the first defense.
The New Zealand Herald reports that the bond issue is a private matter from Bertarelli and has nothing to do with the Alinghi team. According to Team New Zealand boss Grant Dalton, the agreement came about shortly before the signing of the contract with the United Arab Emirates as the main sponsor. Their commitment would not have been enough to reach the amount of 60 million New Zealand dollars needed to access the $ 34 million support pledged by the New Zealand government. In addition, the money was necessary to be able to compete in the upcoming pre-regattas in Europe.
"There are no obligations attached to the bond and Bertarelli has no control over the Emirates Team New Zealand," said Dalton. He asked Bertarelli because they were old friends. "My job is to try to win the Cup. This money helps. I think Bertarelli wants to make sure that Team New Zealand will ride in Valencia, so that in his opinion the regatta would lose some of its appeal without us. It would be like football World Cup without Brazil."
So far there have been no reactions from other potential challengers. They're probably still trying to get through to Bertarelli …