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Sail Trimmer Argo Quits Oracle Team

October 24, 2002

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AUCKLAND, New Zealand (AP) _ America’s Cup-winning sail trimmer Stu Argo has quit the Oracle America’s Cup challenge a day after the appointment of New Zealander Chris Dickson as its skipper and helmsman.

Argo, of Grosse Point Woods, Mich., served his final day with Oracle on Friday. Spokeswoman Joanna Ingley said Argo had ``departed the team to pursue other interests. He will be sorely missed.″

The resignation of Argo, who sailed on 1992 America’s Cup winner America3, is the first since Dickson was promoted Thursday to a controlling position in the Oracle sailing team.

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison appointed Dickson as skipper and helmsman of his race yacht, replacing world match racing champion Peter Holmberg, and to a broader sailing and development position within the $85 million campaign.

The appointment followed Dickson’s removal from the American team in February after friction with fellow sailors and shore team members. He was assigned a shore-bound advisory role.

Ellison said Thursday that Dickson would now oversee all areas of sailing performance and have sole responsibility for choosing crews for each race.

``Chris is now responsible for picking what sailors are out on the water every day,″ Ellison said.

Argo and Dickson are sailing contemporaries. Both competed in the America’s Cup for the first time in 1986-87, Dickson for New Zealand and Argo for the Heart of America syndicate.

Argo sailed for America3 in 1992 and coached America’s all-woman Cup challenge in 1995. He was with the New York Yacht Club’s Young America syndicate in Auckland in 1999.

He has sailed with Dickson and the Oracle team on the world match-racing circuit this year.

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