Have you ever wanted to be a spy? Yeah? Have you ever thought you'd be on a boat? No? How about angering the Swiss? Yeah, me either. But check this out, they might have a job opening over at BMW Oracle Racing because they're probably going to have to fire Jean-Antoine Bonnaveau. He was detained by French police (in France) and apparently he went Totally Spies! Totally Party on the Alinghi project:
According to court documents filed in New York, Mr Bonnaveau told officers in Montpellier, southern France: “I went there to take photos of Alinghi facilities and possibly of boat components.” He said that he was part of a reconnaissance unit at BMW Oracle Racing known as the “recon cell”.
“I specify that I was officially authorised by my company to carry out this reconnaissance,” Mr Bonnaveau said.
He told police that he was paid €10,000 (£9,000) a month. He also said that he had been followed and videoed by an Alinghi team member.
French spies are terrible with secrets. But Bonnaveau told them to chill like wine:
“This type of information gathering on the competition is routine, Even Alinghi does it this way,” he said.
“At the end of 2008, during the period of putting our own boat in the water in Anacortes in the United States and during our training in San Diego, we had to put up with the constant, bothersome presence of the Alinghi information team.”
He added that he had found out nothing from his trip to Lake Geneva that was “critical for Alinghi or frankly decisive for Oracle”
All of this is just crazy. Billionaires sending secret agents with cameras that are, no doubt, tiny and/or integrated into other seemingly mundane objects with which to snoop each other's sailboats? Listen up guys, I'll tell you their secret. THE WIND.
[ via timesonline.co.uk ]