Sailing-America's Cup Challengers of Record Australia withdraw

July 19 Fri Jul 18, 2014 11:59pm EDT

July 19 (Reuters) - The next America's Cup in 2017 has been thrown into turmoil with the official Challengers of Record withdrawing from the regatta.

Organisers said on Saturday that Australia's Hamilton Island Yacht Club has withdrawn its challenge for the 35th America's Cup event, which is to be sailed in 2017 in either San Diego or Bermuda.

The Challengers of Record represent all of the challenging teams with the holders of sport's oldest sporting trophy, currently Oracle Team USA, to negotiate the rules and format for the America's Cup.

"The America's Cup organisers have received notification from the principals of Hamilton Island Yacht Club of their intention to withdraw Team Australia from the 35th America's Cup," America's Cup Event Authority chief executive Russell Coutts said in a statement.

"We are very disappointed to be receiving this news. We were excited to have Australia as a challenger and we were also looking forward to the prospect of holding America's Cup World Series events in Australia."

No one was immediately available at the Hamilton Yacht Club to clarify their decision. (Reporting by Greg Stutchbury in Wellington; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty)

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