Sailing: Measurers admit mistake in America's Cup scandal
SAN FRANCISCO - The America's Cup Measurement Committee has admitted it made a mistake and that one of the three prototype boats owned by defending champion Oracle Team USA was not illegally modified during warm-up regattas last year.
The remaining challengers, Emirates Team New Zealand and Italy's Luna Rossa, had both accused Oracle Team USA of cheating but Oracle Team USA chief executive Russell Coutts told The Associated Press that Friday's admission shows the alterations were not a team-wide decision but individual errors.
Although the boats competed in America's Cup World Series - warm-up regattas - and not the America's Cup itself, the jury could punish Oracle with sanctions that could include a fine, forfeiture of races in the best-of-17 America's Cup match or disqualification.
In a statement released Friday, the measurement committee cited "miscommunication and-or a misunderstanding" on its part in dealing with a boatbuilder who was preparing the 45-foot catamarans for the Red Bull Youth America's Cup in early September.