ALICANTE, ESP – Our sources close to the beleaguered Volvo Ocean Racing team AkzoNobel, as well as Dutch media, are reporting that an arbitration hearing is indeed taking place tomorrow (Friday) under the auspices of the Netherlands Arbitration Institute, the alternative dispute resolution in lieu of the Dutch courts agreed in the contract between AkzoNobel and Simeon Tienpont's management company STEAM Ocean Racing BV.
To wit, the Dutch news website NOS reported Wednesday evening:
"Simeon Tienpont will try to get his seat on board AkzoNobel via the Dutch Arbitration Institute (NAI). The case is Friday, two days before the start of the first stage of the Volvo Ocean Race. The sailor was hired as a captain of the Dutch AkzoNobel team, but was suspended for [alleged breach of contract] last week by Tienpon's management company STEAM Ocean Racing. Tienpont accuses AkzoNobel of the same....In the meantime, New Zealander Brad Jackson has been appointed as his successor, but Tienpont wants to the arbitration to enforce his return next Sunday as the skipper."
Below is the NOS TV news video shot in Alicante on Wednesday with Dutch commentary and featuring comments (in English) by the team's Comms Director Emily Caroe (GBR, doing her first VOR) and the crew member appointed by AkzoNobel to succeed Mr Tienpont, VOR veteran Brad Jackson (NZL, seventh VOR).
Note that Ms Caroe says, "They've all between them decided who will be our skipper...and that's Brad Jackson; this will be his seventh time around the world...he's a three times winner...." Assuming that's true, I wonder how many times the skipper of a VOR team has been decided by the crew.
Meanwhile, AzkoNobel (the company) has some problems of it's own, per this article that appeared in yesterday's Evening Standard (UK), at least in part, the company says, due to Hurricane Harvey in Houston....