The first day of the America’s Cup World Series in Naples, Italy, had an action packed start with winds gusting in upwards of 25 knots as the nine crews headed out on the race course in the afternoon. Less than an hour before the start, Regatta Director Iain Murray recalled the VIP guest racers, a good call judging by how things turned out.
In Race 1, it was all on at the start with plenty of penalties and boundary calls. Oracle Racing Spithill led for most of the race, with Artemis Racing close behind. But at the last windward mark Artemis Racing dove into a wave after rounding and within seconds the bows dug in and the AC45 capsized.
'It was all going well, and it will be interesting to watch the video, because we bore off, both hulls went down, it felt relatively safe, then up on her nose and she went over. Luckily no one's injured, but the wing's injured. The wing is done. It is absolutely broken, really broken. I'm hoping that there's a spare around, potentially we can use the Aleph one that's not being used. The boat was so well prepared and sorted for the regatta, and we've been going well in training, so all in all a big disappointment,' said Skipper Terry Hutchinson.
'It was a balance between racing the boat hard and not putting ourselves in a position of risk. I don't really feel like we put ourselves in a position of risk, but still we ended up on our side. Just... frustrating,' continued Hutchinson.
The team has hauled out the AC45 and it's all hands on deck to replace the wing in every effort to ensure that the boat is in perfect working order for tomorrow’s match and fleet racing.
Oracle Racing Spithill claimed the victory in Race 1, with Energy Team (FRA) in a close second followed by Emirates Team New Zealand. In Race 2, Emirates Team New Zealand were first, Team Korea second and Oracle Racing Spithill in third. Oracle Racing Spithill and Emirates Team New Zealand are now tied for first at the end of day one.