Another $15k for A2B yacht race

The Invercargill City Council has "approved in principle" another $15,000 for the A2B yacht race.

The cash injection comes on top of the $100,000 the council has already granted to the beleaguered event.

Invercargill City Council chief executive Richard King said yesterday the council looked set to give the race another $15,000 but the grant would not be in vain as he believed the race would go ahead in 2015.

He could not say what the original $100,000 grant was spent on, referring The Southland Times to race organisers.

The grant was unlikely to be recouped unless any boats ever set sail, Mr King said.

Race organisers were reluctant to disclose what the initial grant was used for.

One organiser, Murray Francis, said it had been spent on "race development" and had been dealt with by his co-organiser, Craig Seuseu.

However, Mr Seuseu, who was the project director, said he no longer knew about the race after "stepping aside" several months ago when it was postponed.

Third race organiser and SMC events director David Mee refused to say where the funding from the council had gone.

"I'm not going to give you a full rundown of that."

He agreed ratepayers should know where the money had gone, but said that responsibility rested with the council. Mr King said he believed the council grant was still a worthwhile investment for ratepayers.

The race was still likely to happen in 2015, but risk was associated with every investment, he said.

"If it doesn't happen in 2015 then it might not happen.

"There's a risk here, there's no question about that but if we don't take calculated risks then nothing will happen."

The Southland Times