America's Cup defence will wait until 2009
The America's Cup showdown between Swiss defender Alinghi and BMW Oracle Racing of the United States will not begin until next spring at the earliest.
The ruling by New York State Supreme Court Judge Herman Cahn on Monday is considered a victory for the Alinghi sailing team.
BMW Oracle felt it had the right as Challenger of Record to hold the best-of-three series in October, but Alinghi had argued that it wouldn't be able to build a boat in time.
Cahn said it would be "inequitable" to deprive the Swiss of the full 10-month notice of challenge to prepare its boat.
The 10-month period began with Monday's ruling, which makes March 12 the earliest possible date for the start of a rare best-of-three match race, known as a Deed of Gift Match.
The judge ordered that the match be sailed in Valencia, Spain, or any other location selected by the Swiss, provided they give the BMW Oracle six months notice.
Alinghi, sponsored by the Societe Nautique de Geneve sailing club, had been holding out for July 2009, saying it needed the proper amount of time to build its 27.5-metre multihull boat.
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