Team NZ and America's Cup rivals able to practise despite COVID-19 restrictions

Inside the Games. By Michael Houston.

Emirates Team New Zealand (ETNZ) have revealed that its preparations for the 36th America's Cup will continue under COVID-19 alerts, despite the Mayor of Auckland ruling that major events would only go ahead if it was safe to do so.

New Zealand's largest city is due to host the prestigious sailing competition, first staged in 1851, from March 6 to 21 next year 2021. 

But the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has suggested that there will be strict rules in place, with a possible ban on international media being considered to minimise the risk of spreading the virus.

A build up to the event is scheduled to start in four months with the last of the America's Cup World Series events in Auckland in December later this year.

The series to decide the Cup challenger would be due to follow in January before the event officially starts in March.

A spokesperson for ETNZ, the defending champions of the Cup having won it it in San Francisco in 2017, claimed that dates for the event were fixed and would not change, according to Radio New Zealand 

“The ultimate decision on the America's Cup lies with the defender Emirates Team New Zealand, as the America's Cup rights holder,” read the statement.

“The event management arm continues to look at all event scenarios at all levels and will adapt as required.”

Read the full story at Inside the Games.

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