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Only 4 challengers for 34th America's Cup

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POSTED August 2, 2012 8:21 p.m.

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Only four foreign challengers met the deadline to enter the Louis Vuitton Cup next summer to determine the opponent for Oracle Racing in the 34th America's Cup.

They are Sweden's Artemis Racing, Emirates Team New Zealand, Italy's Luna Rossa Challenge and Team Korea.

The Louis Vuitton Cup will run from July 4 through Sept. 1, 2013, on San Francisco Bay, followed by the America's Cup match from Sept. 7-22.

Oracle Racing says it will hold defender trials to strengthen its bid to defend the Cup. Jimmy Spithill, who skippered the team to victory in the 33rd America's Cup, will helm one of the boats, while Ben Ainslie, the British star who's currently trying to win his fourth straight Olympic gold medal, will helm the other. They will go head to head on the same racetrack and on the same days as the Louis Vuitton Cup challengers.

Organizers knew the numbers would shake out from the original list of 14 challengers from around the globe. The sluggish world economy and a switch from sloops to catamarans caused several syndicates to drop out.

SF commuter trains allowing bicycles

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit trains will allow bicycles all day on all trains on Friday's this month as part of a test to see if commute-time blackouts are still necessary.

BART normally bans bikes during weekday morning and evening commuter rush hours on all but the Richmond-Fremont line.

Transit officials say trains are too crowded to accommodate bikes during rush periods.

But cyclists complain that the restrictions discourage them from riding BART because it is difficult or even impossible for them to pedal to and from work or school.

BART officials hope enough cyclists will bring their bikes aboard to let the agency know if it can eliminate or relax the weekday bike blackout.


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