No rush to fund ETNZ

I agree with the Herald Editorial…there is no rush to fund Emirates Team New Zealand…I think we should be waiting to see if the sponsors are going to go again before committing any cash.

If anything though we should commit cash to stopping other teams using our technology.

Clearly, the Government feels pressured to rush into funding another America’s Cup bid. Yesterday’s official welcome at Queens Wharf re-emphasised the widespread admiration for Team NZ, while the team themselves have wasted no time applying pressure for a quick decision. Skipper Dean Barker has led the charge, speaking of a very small window of opportunity before circling vultures poach some of his crewmen. 

Their warning is not totally persuasive. The interest generated by Team NZ’s thrilling challenge means there will surely be more entrants in the 35th America’s Cup. But it is difficult to see this leading to wholesale departures from the team. And even if this were so, the damage would not be irreparable. This country has young sailors ready, willing and possibly able to take their place if a future challenge is sponsored.

Therefore, while the Economic Development Minister, Steven Joyce, indicated yesterday that funding will be forthcoming, the Cabinet can afford to wait for the waters to settle before deciding how much greater this will be than the previous Government’s $36 million.

As I said…let’s wait to see if the sponsors pony up.


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  • williamabong

    ETNZ would be better off promoting the concept of a World Cup where the competition is based on mono hulls at fixed dimensions and construction methods, this would limit spending and force a competition between sailors and boats rather than the spoils going to the one with the deepest pockets and the race being between two computers.
    The added bonus would be telling Larry that seeing as he wants theAmericas Cup so bad he is comfortable with flexing the rules it’s his to keep and anyone stupid enough to challenge for it can keep it.

    • mike

      I agree, ditch the current system where money wins and move to a new regatta where all the teams sail the same class of boat… same technology for everyone, make it regatta based on skill like the old A1 GP motor series. That was good, better than F1!

      • Butts_McButts

        Except the A1 engines weren’t standard across the board and it was a farce? If the boats are all the same, would you even bother watching? And what would our local industry have to prove in a spec series?

        • Honcho

          Agree on A1 being a complete farce.

          The idea of that proposed world cup regatta has some merit, pitting nation against nation, in an attempt to boil up a bit of national pride and rivalry.
          Current world champ hosts the next championship, defending champs get to adorn themselves and their boat with something like the highly revered world champions stripes in cycling.
          Nothing to say the formula can not change for the next championships regatta, as voted by shareholding nations, which would keep the technology relevant, and make the next championship racing fresh and interesting.

    • Whafe

      Mono hulls are to slow and far to dull. This racing needs F1 on water boasts, not sluggish mono hulls. ;)

  • Agreed, especially about protecting our tech, if we can’t do it with a profile like ETNZ then Copyright / Patents should be scrapped completely.

    Same problem with the race itself, those with money win …

  • johnbronkhorst

    Funding should only be given, AFTER a profit and loss projection along side a risk analysis is completed… any other investment.
    My worry is, that the offer was made to politically neutralise the promise of funding by cunliffe.

    • kehua

      Right on john, Public Money demands public exposure, 36 million down the drain after leading 7 zip no way! As for the new tech stuff, surely Taxpayers now have shares in the Intellectual Property involved. The AC is about Individuals and Syndicates not Country sponsored teams.

    • Tom

      Yup thats a wise move. For all we know it might be only creating 50 bucks of extra revenue for NZ.

  • Patrick

    The loyalty of the key players will be a pointer as to whether or not it is worth funding. If they think they have a chance of defeating Oracle next time around then they will be willing to stick around. If they all jump ship ala Coutts & Butterworth then the game is up. I for one think it is going to be very difficult to fight an arms race against Larry Ellison given the resources he can throw at this at any given time. Innovation is the only way we will beat him & he has stymied that by hiring our best & brightest.

  • Whanga_Cynic

    Why should we give them anything? Obama didn’t chip in to Team USA and they seemed to do OK. Let the sponsors pay.

  • Mr_V4

    Surely the govt should wait to ensure Emirates is back on board (and or another large sponsor) before committing tax $ ?

  • Steve (North Shore)

    Should be funded, just like the fucking Arts and Acting. Jobs on the dole.
    But the technology is amazing. I know we can’t have a new style Hobie 14/16 up on foils because it is dangerous.
    How about model cats, radio controlled – up on foils.
    My idea ©