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Oracle to give Phantom Series a miss

Oracle Team USA will not compete in the D-6 Flying Phantom Series finale which gets under way on Sunday in the Great Sound.

Peter Rusch, the team spokesman, confirmed that the defender of the America’s Cup will not be among the teams from Europe, United States and Canada competing in the four-day regatta.

“Oracle Team USA will not have sailors in the Phantom regatta,” Rusch said yesterday.

Doubts whether Oracle sailors would take part arose because of the team’s heavy training schedule in their pair of wing-sail foiling AC45 test boats and single-handed foiling Moths.

“Their training schedule makes it difficult to do both Phantoms and Moth, and they are going to participate in the Moth event,” Rusch said.

Jimmy Spithill, the Oracle skipper, and his team-mates Tom Slingsby and Kyle Langford are preparing for next month’s Amlin International Moth Regatta also to take place in the Great Sound.

Artemis Racing, the Swedish challenger, will be the sole America’s Cup team represented in the Flying Phantom regatta featuring the one-design foiling catamarans to be held from November 29 to December 2.

The fleet will race on courses laid out by David Campbell-James, the regatta director and father of Land Rover BAR tactician Paul Campbell-James, who also officiated in last month’s Argo Group Gold Cup. The courses will feature a reaching start with a clearing mark in the middle, a leeward gate, a windward gate and a reaching finish after rounding the final mark.

The Flying Phantom Series finale is based on an original idea from Oracle pair Philippe Presti, the team’s coach, and Slingsby, the team tactician and manager, who both have first-hand experience sailing Oracle’s training fleet of Flying Phantoms.