So what do bored hacks do when there's no racing to report?


Imagine a warehouse-sized room full of the world’s finest yachting journalists and broadcasters. And promise them the world’s tastiest sailing regatta – the America’s Cup. Heady stuff and hours of fine TV footage, broadcast and miles of the written word. Take away the racing, as has happened for the last three days of Louis Vuitton Cup racing and what do they write about? They chase their tales.

The America’s Cup is a hotbed of rumour and intrigue, gossip, lies and spies. And no time more so when there is a lack of real news. So when Matt Sheahan broke a story about Alinghi having allegedly designed a way of preventing her keel bending (see earlier story on, effectively creating a canting keel it was picked up and batted round the media centre like a shuttlecock, elaborated on, decried, denied or just ignored.

One distinguised yachting journalist has filled his time by having a rant about the state of Valencia’s sewers (verdict smelly), crime (rife) and police (Taliban). There’s bike theft, spiked tyres, Cup crews fined for cycling on pavements and more.

Just like being in Barcelona really, or Paris, London, New York or any other big city. Bring on the racing!

Picture, media centre or gossip factory?