4 Sep 2013

Oracle docked points for cheating

11:24 am on 4 September 2013

Team New Zealand will start their America's Cup challenge with a two win advantage after defenders Oracle had points deducted and team members suspended.

The sentence was imposed by an America's Cup jury on Wednesday after Oracle admitted it had cheated by using illegal boats in the leadup America's Cup World Series last year.

Oracle will start their defence on -2 points, equating to two wins.

They will therefore need to win 11 races before Team New Zealand wins nine.

One sailor and three of Oracle's shore crew have been suspended from the America's Cup.

A points deduction has never before happened in an America's Cup final.

Yachting commentator Bob Fisher told Morning Report the two point penalty is hefty, but had been expected by many commentators.

He says the banned team members - Bryan Ruthernburg, Andrew Walker, Matt Mitchell and Dirk de Ridder - will be reported to their national authorities and the International Sailing Federation and could face further sanctions.

The first race of the America's Cup is due to be held this weekend.