Please select your home edition
Edition
T Clewring AC72

America's Cup- TWO ZIP – WOW!

by Bob Fisher on 8 Sep 2013
34th America’s Cup - Race day 1; Oracle Team USA vs. Emirates Team New Zealand © ACEA / Ricardo Pinto http://photo.americascup.com/


Only in their dreams would the wildest of the Kiwi supporters dared to predict the outcome of the first day’s racing in the 34th America’s Cup. Two victories, carved in 'proper' match racing fashion by being faster on the upwind legs, to Emirates Team New Zealand put a big grin on the face of the team’s managing director, Grant Dalton, the oldest man on either boat.


'Dalts' would have remembered one former San Franciscan sailor for whom the America’s Cup held a special place. Tom Blackaller, who teased Dennis Conner in Fremantle when he made allegations that the Kiwis were cheating by building a glassfibre 12-Metre. 'Dennis, I don’t think you should have said that,' quipped Blackaller. 'I take it all back,' said DC. 'I don’t think you can,' said Blackie. Tom Blackaller died at the wheel of his race-car 24 years ago today.

The starts of both races were keenly contested, but in each of them, Jimmy Spithill steered the Oracle Team USA AC-72 to leeward of his opponent, but each time Dean Barker managed to avoid the attentions of his attacker and led around the first mark to begin the downwind leg.

For the first race the wind was 16 knots from the west-south-west and from a two second lead at the first mark, ETNZ gained a further two seconds and then almost threw it away with a bad mark rounding. The fast travelling Oracle had some difficulty in avoiding the stalled Kiwi boat.

Oracle took over the front running but not for long. Halfway up the beat, ETNZ was back in front and rounded the third mark of the 9.71 mile course with a lead of 25 seconds. The Oracle crew didn’t give up but lost a further 11 seconds by the finish. But, whatever else, we had had two passes by the boats – the first all summer.

The wind was much the same for the second race and Jimmy 'Pit Bull' Spithill was at his aggressive best, attempting to 'hook' Barker in the pre-start. There was a luff that was very close, but Barker slid clear ahead and was off to a two second lead at the first mark and the two matched gybes downwind and stayed close.

Upwind, Barker relentlessly drew ahead and by the time the two boats went though the weather gate 46 seconds apart, the race was as good as over.

ETNZ’s peak speed of 46.0 was considerably greater than the 42.87 of Oracle, but VMG angles have to be considered, and there is little doubt that the American boat was sailing deeper downwind.

Two-nil up and there were smiles on the faces of the Kiwi crew, but it is fully aware that there is a long way to go in this series. 'There’s lots for us to learn,' said Barker, 'we made mistakes but otherwise had two good races today.'

[These are] 'two very evenly matched teams in evenly matched boats,' said Spithill. 'We lost on boatspeed, not strategy,' admitted Oracle tactician, John Kostecki.

There are two races scheduled on the morrow, but with a 2 – 0 lead there is reason for the smiles on the faces of the Kiwi supporters.

upffront 660x82Bakewell-White Yacht DesignT Clewring AC72

Related Articles

Gladwell's Line - Does the America's Cup really need a Star Chamber?
The first meeting of the three-man America's Cup Arbitration Panel is believed to have taken place in London The first meeting of the three-man America's Cup Arbitration Panel is believed to have taken place in London in the past week or so. Officially the date hasn't been publicly announced. The venue hasn't been publicly named, and the parties have appeared before a Panel that is publicly nameless.
Posted on 23 Jul
America's Cup - Glenn Ashby on Emirates Team NZ's road to Bermuda
Part 2 of the interview with Emirates Team NZ skipper Glenn Ashby. In this part of the interview we look at what is going to happen once Emirates Team NZ get their 'AC49.5' sailing in Auckland, and how the campaign may shape up before they leave for Bermuda. Ashby wouldn’t be drawn on whether Team New Zealand had started their AC50 build, with July being the usual start of what is usually a five-month build and commissioning period for an end of December launch.
Posted on 10 Jul
America's Cup - Glenn Ashby on Emirates Team NZ's new AC49.5
Sail-World talks with Emirates Team NZ skipper, Glenn Ashby on what is different about the team's new test boat Just under 11 months out from the 35th America’s Cup, Team New Zealand does not seem to be in its customary place at the front of the starting grid to be the first to launch their Challenger, or are they? Although they will be one of the last of the six teams to launch an AC45 Surrogate, Emirates Team New Zealand may have stolen a march with a boat that is as close as you can get to an AC50.
Posted on 9 Jul
Gladwell's Line - Emirates Team NZ launches shadow AC50
Emirates Team NZ took a late but significant step along the road to the 35th America's Cup, with the launch of their AC4 Emirates Team NZ took a late but significant step along the road to the 35th America's Cup, with the launch of their AC45S - as the test boats are called in the Protocol which governs the 2017 event. The bloated Protocol, which now runs to 83 pages of legalese, is restrictive on the size of boat that can be built as a test platform but doesn't restrict the number that can be built.
Posted on 22 Jun
Platino recovery - Family confirms that tug has made rendezvous
Reports in social media say a salvage tug has made a rendezvous with the Platino earlier than expected. Reports in social media by family and friends of Nick Saull, the crew member killed during a catastrophic incident abroad the 66ft yacht Platino say the salvage tug which left on Tuesday night has made the rendezvous earlier than expected. The Facebook report says the tug, Sea Pelican, arrived on Friday morning, the weather in the area has eased and with a more favorable outlook.
Posted on 16 Jun
Rio 2016 - Double Olympic medallist on the delights of Guanabara Bay
Olympic Gold and Bronze medallist Bruce Kendall updates on the 2016 Olympic venue at Guanabara Bay. Olympic Gold and Bronze medallist, and now a windsurfer coach, Bruce Kendall has made several trips to the 2016 Olympic venue at Guanabara Bay. He updates on the pollution issue which is clearly not going to be resolved in a couple of months, and also shares his views on the venue from a sailing competition perspective.
Posted on 14 Jun
America's Cup - Artemis win Chicago as Team Japan wins two races
Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series got three races away on Super Sunday. After losing the first official day of racing due to light winds and the non-arrival of the onshore breeze, Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series got three races away on Super Sunday. From a racing perspective this was probably the best day of racing yet in the series which counts for points in the Qualifying Series of the America's Cup in 11 months time.
Posted on 12 Jun
America's Cup - Emirates TNZ NZ and Oracle capsize in Chicago Practice
Emirates Team New Zealand and Oracle Team USA capsized in Practice Racing at the Louis Vuitton ACWS Chicago There was action aplenty on Practice Day at Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series Chicago, after Emirates Team New Zealand capsized in their match with Oracle Team USA, and then Oracle Team USA capsized later in the day. Team NZ's skipper skipper Glenn Ashby performed some impressive acrobatics ejecting from the AC45 capsize, without injury.
Posted on 11 Jun
America's Cup - Changes proposed to control future Cup options
Changes are being mooted to put the America's Cup on a longer-term footing according to the Daily Telegraph (UK) News that changes are being mooted to put the America's Cup on a longer-term footing is being floated in the Daily Telegraph (UK) by the British Challenger, Land Rover BAR. According to the Telegraph, some of the teams in the 2017 America's Cup are keen to lock-in parameters which would bind successive holders of the a style and frequency for the next America's Cup Match.
Posted on 8 Jun
America's Cup - AC50 construction uncovered - Part 2 - Wings and Costs
Second part of a two-part series looking at the AC50 construction progress at Core Builders Composites Second part of a two-part series looking at the construction progress at Core Builders Composites, and features of the AC50 class which will be used in the 35th America's Cup in Bermuda. Tim Smyth takes us on a tour of the CBC facility in Warkworth, and hour's drive north of Auckland. Where several AC50's, components and wingsails are under construction or have already been shipped to the teams.
Posted on 5 Jun