Please select your home edition
Edition
Naiad

America’s Cup- At long last – a winner

by Bob Fisher on 26 Sep 2013
25/09/2013 - San Francisco (USA,CA) - 34th America’s Cup - Oracle Team USA ACEA / Photo Abner Kingman © http://photo.americascup.com
The most remarkable comeback continued on the 19th day of racing in the 34th America’s Cup – Jimmy Spithill and his crew aboard Oracle Team USA defeated Dean Barker and Emirates Team New Zealand by 44 seconds to record the eighth successive race victory for the defenders in the match and thereby retain the Cup for the Golden Gate Yacht Club.

No one would have given OTUSA the slightest chance when the score was 8-1 against them, but Spithill repeated told the world: 'We know we can still win this.’ It was a bold statement that became less unlikely as victory followed victory, but Spithill delivered the gospel repeatedly, even to the last when the scores were tied.


And wasn’t he correct? He and his crew had the belief in the design and engineering teams in their compound to deliver a faster and faster boat each day. That is exactly what was achieved. OTUSA was the faster boat of the two and it has always been the case in the Cup’s 162-year history that the faster boat has won. The Australia II crew, celebrating (tonight in Sydney) their historic victory 30 years ago will attest to that, and theirs previously was the greatest of all comebacks.

The final race had all the drama and excitement associated with the 34th Cup. ETNZ had the possible advantage of leading into the starting area from the port end and Barker didn’t allow ‘Pitbull’ Spithill to antagonize him and claimed the leeward berth at the starting line and held level with the defender to claim the inside berth at the first turning mark.


The whole of the Kiwi contingent in San Francisco held its concerted breath as the two boats sped down the run with ETNZ able to maintain the lead she had established, but at the leeward gate OTUSA split away, going towards the City Front while ETNZ headed towards Alcatraz. The gap between them, originally more than 200 metres, began to diminish, but at the first cross, the Kiwis on starboard tack were able to cross ahead.

At the next cross, with the Americans having the starboard tack advantage, the positions were reversed and from that moment on the superior upwind speed of Oracle Team USA began to tell, so that by the windward gate the Kiwis trailed by 36 seconds. It was all over bar the shouting. There were no significant gains or losses downwind and the fate of the 34th America’s Cup was sealed when OTUSA finished 44 seconds ahead.


Very few would have thought this result possible a week ago, but the Oracle teamwork proved the naysayers incorrect. Teamwork pays and the dividends of great teamwork are enormous. The Cup stays in America.

Mackay BoatsNaiad/Oracle SupplierSouthern Spars - 100

Related Articles

A Q&A with Charles Pessler, the regatta director of the legendary STIR
I corresponded with Charles Pessler, STIR’s regatta director, to learn about the event’s recent changes and evolutions. I recently corresponded via email with Charles “Chuck” Pessler, who is serving as the regatta director of the legendary STIR, to learn more about the changes and evolutions that have taken place at the event since my 2010 trip to racing paradise.
Posted on 22 Mar
New Pacific 52 class makes its debut in San Francisco
The first of two new-build Pacific 52's from Auckland's Cookson Boats is now sailing in San Francisco. The first of two new-build Pacific 52's from Auckland's Cookson Boats is now sailing in San Francisco. Invisible Hand for San Francisco's Frank Slootman replaces his earlier RP63 of the same name. She will soon be joined by a second Cookson build, Bad Pack (Tom Holthus) from the same moulds. A third, RIO 52 is for RIO 100 supermaxi owner Manouch Moshayedi.
Posted on 18 Mar
A Q&A with Chris Woolsey, regatta chair of the Miami to Havana Race
I talked with Chris Woolsey, regatta chair of the Miami to Havana Race, to learn more about this exciting race to Cuba. The 2017 Miami to Havana Race is set to begin on March 15 and promises high adventure-both sailing-related and cultural-for the sailors lucky enough to be participating in this historical-and for now legal-race. I talked with Chris Woolsey, regatta chair of the Miami to Havana Race and SORC race chairman, to learn more about this exciting race to Cuba.
Posted on 13 Mar
Gladwell's Line - Of Carnage, Characters and Colour
About this time of an America's Cup season, the sap begins rising as new boats are launched About this time of an America's Cup season, the sap begins rising as new boats are launched, and Cup fans get their first sight of the various team designers' response to the latest America's Cup Class rule. In the monohull days, of course, we initially only got a partial glimpse thanks to the shrouding practices adopted by all teams to hide the nether regions of their America's Cupper
Posted on 13 Mar
Caleb Paine on winning a US Sailing Rolex Yachtsman of the Year Award
I talked with Caleb Paine about his recent US Sailing Rolex Yachtsman of the Year Award and about his Olympic plans. On August 16, Caleb Paine broke the longest-running medal ceremony dry spell for American-flagged Olympic sailors since the 1930s when he captured a bronze medal in the Finn class at the Rio 2016 Olympics. I recently caught up with Paine on the phone to talk about his proud US Sailing Rolex Yachtsman of the Year Award and about his future sailing plans.
Posted on 10 Mar
A Q&A with Lloyd Thornburg about his love of fast boats and racing
I recently caught up with Thornburg to learn more about his program, and to gain insight into racing MOD70s offshore. Not too many world-class sailors hail from the high deserts of Santa Fe, New Mexico, but Lloyd Thornburg isn’t your average sailor. The 37-year old investor flies the New York Yacht Club’s burgee from his fleet of raceboats that have included a Gunboat 66, a MOD70, and a Farr 280. I recently caught up with Thornburg to learn more about his program, and to gain insight into racing MOD70s offshore.
Posted on 8 Mar
So what’s it really like?
For ages now, these editorials have talked about multihull this, record that, outrageous boat speed and 24-hour runs For ages now, well it seems like that anyway, these editorials have talked about multihull this, record that, outrageous boat speed and incredible 24-hour runs. In their own very unique way they totally represent the technical avant-garde, and thank God for that. Where would we be without their impressive shapes, wonderful rigs, and now of course, foiling magic.
Posted on 6 Mar
JJ Giltinan 18ft - Kiwi Champion the subject of two protests in Sydney
Overall series leader Yamaha will have her position put on the line in a series of protest hearings on Friday Overall series leader Yamaha will have her position put on the line in a series of protest hearings Friday morning in Sydney. She faces two claims - both from Appliancesonline (David Witt). The first is an attempt to re-open the Hearing held on Wednesday morning after Yamaha was suffered damage in Race 3 as a result of a collision with a give way yacht, and Yamaha received redress of average
Posted on 3 Mar
A Q&A with US Sailing’s Malcolm Page about the Sailing World Cup Miami
I spoke with Malcolm Page, US Sailing’s Olympic chief, about the team’s performance at the 2017 Sailing World Cup Miami I talked with Malcolm Page (AUS), a two-time Olympic gold medalist in the Men’s 470 class and the chief of Olympic sailing at US Sailing, to get his pulse on the team’s performance at the 2017 Sailing World Cup Miami and discuss some recent coaching changes within the Olympic-sailing program.
Posted on 20 Feb
America's Cup - Emirates Team NZ give first look at the pedaling AC50
Emirates Team New Zealand formally christened their new AC50 America's Cup Challenger on a rainy Auckland afternoon. Emirates Team New Zealand formally christened their new AC50 America's Cup Challenger on a rainy Auckland afternoon. The team has been sailing for the previous two days making news headlines after it was revealed in Sail-World.com that the AC50 would become only the second yacht in America's Cup history to use pedal power.
Posted on 16 Feb