sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : America’s Cup: SHOWDOWN!
America’s Cup: SHOWDOWN!


'Oracle Team USA - Race 17 - 18'    Luna Rossa - Carlo Borlenghi ©    Click Here to view large photo

Gary Jobson is a former America's Cup winner, a long time commentator on the sport and in the 34th America's Cup he is the on-the-water expert commentator, aboard Regardless, the official Race Committee vessel. Here's his view on Day 14 in the 34th America's Cup and where the regatta is headed for the two teams:

The 34th America's Cup defense has turned into more of a people show than a boat show. Sure the boats are amazingly fast, technological marvels, but the emotional highs and lows that we are feeling while watching and listening to the sailors compete is the epitome of human drama. How could anyone write a script for such a compelling narrative?

Think about these story lines: The America's Cup has been won and lost by the most successful business leaders of their eras. This is the oldest continuously contested trophy in international sports dating back to 1851. The score is tied at 8-8. We are down to one, 30 minute race around a 10 mile course, off the city front of San Francisco.

A tiny, sailing crazed nation, with a home grown crew, is up against one of the wealthiest men in the world who has acquired the services of Olympic champions and superstars from seven nations.

New Zealand has been one race from winning the Cup for a week, while Oracle Team USA has felt the pressure of being on the brink of defeat for seven races in a row. Tomorrow one team will be heroes, the other will be hurting for a long time.

On the 18th day of the Cup we saw two very different races today. In the first contest the Australian skipper of the American boat, James Spithill, forced the New Zealanders into irons at the start. This is the equivalent of a football player fumbling the ball in his own end zone and the other team recovering it for a touchdown.

USA 17 jumped to a comfortable lead. After the start the boats seemed fairly even in speed in 15-18 knots of wind. With another American victory the score stood at 8-7 with ETNZ still leading the series. After the race the Kiwi skipper, Dean Barker, sounded determined to get right back on the race course.

Race Two commenced on schedule. At the start both boats hit the line at the same time. USA 17 was to windward. Could they drive over the top of NZL5 Barker was in the better inside position and luffed Spithill at the first turning mark. Downwind USA 17 gained a length or two.

There wasn't much difference in speed between the AC 72s. Both cats streaked down the course at 41 knots.

About 1/2 mile from the leeward gate USA 17 jibed. Inexplicably NZL continued on. The leading boat should always cover by staying between the competitor and the next mark. The American boat was working to set up a split at the gate to sail on a different course than the Kiwis.

Had NZL jibed with USA 17 they would have stayed in phase. Then USA 17 would have been forced to make two jibes to get the split. In contrast, in previous races, OTUSA's tactician, Great Britain's, Ben Ainslie covered closely when they were ahead on Leg Two.

Oracle Team USA tactician Ben Ainslie Race 17 - 18 -  Luna Rossa - Carlo Borlenghi ©   Click Here to view large photo
On the third leg to windward USA 17 inched up under the lee of Alcatraz Island. I wonder if the prisoners in the 1930s would have been able to watch the Cup races had they taken place on the Bay at that time?

NZL tacked over. They were crossing by about three lengths. NZL's tactician, Ray Davies, called for a tack ahead but to leeward of USA 17.

At that moment, Spithill headed down a few degrees, got his boat foiling and sailed right over NZL. The Kiwis were stunned.

When USA 17 tacked back into the center of course, NZL followed immediately. NZL could have extended a few more lengths and that might have helped them keep their wind clear. It is never tidy when a faster boat passes a slower boat.

At that moment USA 17 took off and sailed away from NZL at an astonishing rate. It reminds me of the philosophy of boxer, Mike Tyson, who said, 'Every opponent has a plan until I punch them in the nose.'

The crew of Emirates Team New Zealand looked as if Tyson had landed one of his punishing left hooks. USA 17 crossed the line in triumph. The American team had tied the score at 8 to 8.

After the race I think Jimmy Spithill was ready to sail the finale right then. His crew looked super happy. Over on NZL it was total devastation. Neither Dean Barker, Ray Davies nor syndicate head, Grant Dalton were up to doing a post-race interview from the boat. Their faces told the story. Their boat and crew were no longer the dominant team they were for the first 11 days of this historic match.

On August 28 I predicted in my AC Report 5 that 'Oracle Team USA would defend....barely.' Little did I know at the time that their wing trimmer would be disqualifed from competition for illegally altering the team's AC 45s last year.

Nor did I know that USA 17 would be so slow compared to New Zealand on the opening weekend. Nor did I realize how Oracle could make such a comeback. An old saying defined the American team, 'When the going gets tough, the tough get going.'

Oracle Team USA skipper James Spithill - Race 17 - 18 -  Luna Rossa - Carlo Borlenghi ©   Click Here to view large photo
After each losing day Jimmy Spithill would boldly declare, 'We can win races.' The press corp was incredulous. He made his statements with such over-the-top conviction that it made you wonder if maybe he was right. It reminds me of the great football quarterback Joe Namath's bold guarantee that the upstart American Football League, New York Jets, would defeat the mighty Baltimore Colts. The Jets won 16-7. Namath has been a hero ever since.

Spithill must have known that his design team and shore crew had many experiments that might give the boat additional speed. The big secret around here is what did OTUSA do to improve their speed? I believe it is a combination of many little things.

Eventually, we will know. After every America's Cup designers and engineers present papers on their research and innovations. I bet we see volumes of material published over the next few years. The secret of the USA turnaround is the designers.

BUT!

The America's Cup is not over. We have one more race. OTUSA has won 10 times. They only have eight points because two were taken away for their rules infractions.

New Zealand has won eight races, but was ahead in three other races that were abandoned for either too much wind, or too little. The weather let the Kiwis down just as they were close to securing their ninth victory. Mother Nature can be cruel.

Sports are compelling because we can never really know the outcome. That is why these races are so much fun to watch. To be the only journalist commentating in the middle of race course is quite a privilege. I have never watched, or sailed in such a hard fought battle.

Emirates Team New Zealand Race 17 - 18 -  Luna Rossa - Carlo Borlenghi ©   Click Here to view large photo
After the race today I was talking with my co-commentator Todd Harris and our producer Leon Sefton. My cell phone rang. On the other end of the line was Ted Turner. He was in Atlanta and has been watching all the races. He sounded excited and was very complementary about our television coverage. Ted is one the greatest sailors of our time. He has won the America's Cup was a four time Yachtsman of the Year, is a member of the National Sailing Hall of Fame and one of the most successful television visionaries in the world. Ted, like so many other sailors and non-sailors alike, has been riveted by this America's Cup. I am sure he will be watching tomorrow.

Todd Harris, Ken Read and I will do our best to let the pictures play, and the words of the competitors tell the story as we describe the biggest sailboat race of this century. Tune in at 4pm ET (1 pm PT) to the NBC Sports Network.

Most everyone here in San Francisco believes Oracle Team USA has the America's Cup being re bolted to its pedestal.

If Oracle prevails they will complete an amazing turn around.

If New Zealand finds a way to win, it will be an even bigger turn around. As the legendary Al Michaels once asked, while calling a hockey game during the 1980 Winter Olympic Games, 'Do you believe miracles.'

At this point it might take a miracle for the proud New Zealanders to win, but are you sure they won’t? You better watch because America's Cup history will be written tomorrow.

For more from Gary Jobson see www.jobsonsailing.com


by Gary Jobson

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=114998

5:22 AM Wed 25 Sep 2013GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
2013 America's Cup

Related News Stories:

25 Sep 2013  America's Cup Final photos by Carlo Borlenghi
25 Sep 2013  America's Cup 2013 Race 19 - NOT Just another race
25 Sep 2013  America's Cup: Oracle Team USA update: Winner takes all
25 Sep 2013  America's Cup: Emirates Team NZ update - Down to the Wire
25 Sep 2013  34th America’s Cup - A winner-take-all race tomorrow!
25 Sep 2013  America's Cup: Kiwi Media Conference - Day 14
25 Sep 2013  America's Cup - Race 18 action shots
25 Sep 2013  Amerrica's Cup: Level on Points - Day 14
25 Sep 2013  America's Cup 2013 - Oracle Team USA levels in Race 18
25 Sep 2013  America's Cup Race 17 & 18- Video Replay
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World

A successful medal haul for the Australian Sailing Team (AST) at the ISAF Sailing World Cup in Melbourne with five gold, five silver and three bronze in the Olympic class program, plus two gold and one bronze in the Paralympic fleet. Hear what the sailors had to say about their performance, along with some great video footage of the week's racing on Port Phillip. ... [more]  

Bart’s Bash, the global sailing race that took place in 60 countries around the world, on September 21st, 2014 raised an incredible £366,391.95 for the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation. The race was held in memory of Andrew 'Bart' Simpson, the Olympic gold medal sailor who died in May 2013. ... [more]  

RORC Transatlantic: As with every yacht participating in the race, staff from Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina greeted the French team on arrival with warm congratulations, a cold beer and a welcome basket from the Grenadian Tourism Association on behalf of the people of Grenada. The crew of five looked tired after nearly 17 days at sea, but owner, Frank Lang was full of praise for his crew. ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Perpetual Loyal is no stranger to the Rolex Sydney Hobart. Winning line honours in 2011, they have continued to be a contender, especially in heavier breezes. ... [more]  

In a lot of ways, it was kind of befitting that the best conditions of the last day of the Sailing World Cup – Melbourne, were saved for the Women’s Laser Radial Medal Race. Apart from highlighting them in glorious sunshine, like Huey’s own spotlights, it also brought into frame that were only two girls 470 crews in attendance for the regatta. ... [more]  

The website for the 2015 Finn Gold Cup in Takapuna, New Zealand, has been launched. The Finn class is eagerly anticipating a return to Takapuna Boating Club for what will be only the second Finn World Championship to be held in New Zealand. It will have been 35 years since Cam Lewis (USA) beat John Bertrand (USA) in a thrilling final race showdown in 1980, to take the Gold Cup. ... [more]  

Looking for a great Christmas present which you can buy with a few mouse clicks? Bob Fisher's books on the Round the World races, Farr 40's and the definitive America's Cup two volume set are still available, along with other titles from South Atlantic Publishing. ... [more]  

Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - In January Nqoba, from Durban, will embark on his Yachtmaster qualification and will have none other than legendary sailor Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first man to ever sail solo, non-stop round the world in 1968-69, as his mentor as he takes the first steps to realise his dream of circumnavigating the globe at the helm of a Clipper 70. ... [more]  

IFDS 2014 Worlds: But as you reflect back on the year, we hope you will agree that week of competition in Halifax, Nova Scotia set a new standard for disabled sailing. It was the largest world regatta yet with 18 SKUD-18 teams, 14 Sonar teams and 49 2.4mR competitors and the largest number of countries participating. There were some challenging days finding enough wind to race. ... [more]  

The 2015 McDougall + McConaghy Moth World Championship is set to be even more of a spectacle this year, with the return of the Zhik ‘Mothapolooza’ which promises a potential head-to-head with teams of America’s Cup and Olympic sailors. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Chris Nicholson Interview - Part 2 - On the Rocks *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz, Auckland, NZ
Part 2 of three part, 80 minute, interview with Team Vestas Wind skipper, Chris Nicholson on the wrecking of the Volvo Ocean Race yacht on an idyllic atoll in the South Indian Ocean during the night of November 29. In this part, Nicholson covers what happened from the time the Volvo65 hit the reef on the SE corner of the Cargados Carajos Shoals. ... [more]  

Last Saturday saw the third annual St. Maarten Regatta Beach Clean-Up organized by the St. Maarten Regatta as part of the Regatta Art Competition. Unfortunately, due to exams, not many children showed up. ... [more]  

US Sailing’s Olympic Sailing Committee (OSC) has released the selection procedures for the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team (Sailing) in the 10 events selected for the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games. The Games of the XXXI Olympiad will take place from August 5-21, 2016, and the sailing events will be based at Marina de Gloria on Rio de Janeiro’s harbor front. ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - When the cannon fires sending the 118 entries on their way in the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s 70th Sydney Hobart Yacht Race on December 26, two yachts will stand out, because they first competed back in the early days of the race. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race have announced from their headquarters in Alicante, Spain that an independent report has been commissioned into the grounding of Team Vestas Wind’s boat on a reef in the Indian Ocean. The report will be released during the Auckland stopover. ... [more]  

The French sailor scratches his newly shaved skin. He tentatively reaches towards a plate of fried chicken pieces. Still not sure. He rubs his chin again. He hesitates. Laurent briefly runs his eye over the other plates, but finally he can no longer resist the crispy fried chicken pieces. 'This is what I’ve been waiting for,' says the cheerful Frenchman. ... [more]  

Transatlantic Race: After time correction, Apollo 7 is leading IRC Two. Nigel's team included three close friends from his home town of Plymouth, Devon: Steve Wassell, James Slater and Mark Davies. Also on board were two offshore specialists: Dan Gohl, a past Class40 world champion and Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Record holder as well as Rolex Fastnet Race winner Brett Aarons. ... [more]  

The 2014 OK Dinghy World Championship opens at Black Rock Yacht Club on Port Phillip Bay in Melbourne, Australia, on December 28th and so far there are around 80 entries, with perhaps a few more before registration closes. This 52nd OK Dinghy World Championship will be the third time that Black Rock YC has hosted the event, following 1982 and 1990. ... [more]  

Adelaide Sailing Club played host once again to the Melges 24 class for its 'Christmas Sprint Series', the third three day M24 regatta in five weeks held by ASC which, (in the same season the club is also hosting the M24 Australian Championship) says something about the power of persuasion, energy and organisation being put in to M24 class by its Australian Secretary Donna Evans. ... [more]  

The team, led by Jerome Clerc, will not compete on the 2015 Extreme circuit but intends instead to focus entirely on the Decision 35 Vulcain Trophy season in Switzerland. The professional sailing squad onboard Realteam capped a superb 2014 season with a third place in Sydney last weekend that put them on the third step of the overall Extreme Sailing Series Championship podium. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Chris Nicholson on the Team Vestas Wind disaster - 1 *Feature by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz, Auckland, NZ
Part 1 of three part interview with Team Vestas Wind skipper, Chris Nicholson on the wrecking of the Volvo Ocean Race yacht on an idyllic atoll in the South Indian Ocean during the night of November 29. In this part, Nicholson discusses the factors leading up to hitting the reef, interspersed with other research information, charts, video and images. Parts 2 and 3 will follow on consecutive days. ... [more]  

USA 4 Windsurfing campaign by USA 4 Windsurfing Campaign
Change is inevitable. No matter how hard you try to keep things the same, there comes a time when you must move on. The harder you resist, the more difficult the change. ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Bob Oatley’s Rolex Sydney Hobart race record holder, Wild Oats XI, is out of the water for a final modification after a high speed and rough weather training run off Sydney. ... [more]  

This is Peter Perfect in the Turbo Terrific from the 60s cartoon series, the Wacky Races. Of course, to Australians and a plethora of motoring enthusiasts the world over, the real life Peter Perfect will always be The King of The Mountain. RIP Brocky (Peter Geoffrey Brock). ... [more]  

RORC Transatlantic Race 2014: The Spirit of Adventure crew of 15 were met dockside by representatives of the Royal Ocean Racing Club and well wishers at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina. After enjoying an ice cold beer, the first cold drink for two weeks, the crew cleared customs and headed for the Victory Bar for eggs and bacon. ... [more]  

ISAF World Sailing Rankings - 15 December 2014 - The World Cup Final was a 100-point regatta and whilst Shaw took maximum points, Tartaglini’s eighth was enough for her to hold on to World number one heading into 2015. Shaw remains at World number two with Laura Linares (ITA) at World number three and 2014 World Champion Charline Picon (FRA) at World number four. ... [more]  

Comanche; Supermaxi Showdown VIDEO by Dale Lorimer, Sydney
In what is touted to be one of the most hotly contested Rolex Sydney Hobart line honours battles in recent history, there's been plenty of on-water supermaxi activity over the last week. ... [more]  

Commodores Cup - There was barely four knots of wind for the start of race one today. Brian and I started in port tack, at the committee boat, hit the right corner, and never looked back. There were a few tricky moments on the first run, in four knots of wind, but we managed our position well. For the second lap, the breeze built to six knots and steadied out a bit which made out lives easier. ... [more]  

2014 /2015 International Audi Melges 20 Miami Winter Series - Event No. 1 - One final light air race concluded the 2014/15 Audi Melges 20 Miami Winter Series Act No. 1 on Sunday, hosted by Coconut Grove Sailing Club (CGSC) with championship winner Jason Michas on Midnight Blue along with tactician Mark Mendelblatt and crew Trevor Moore winning the final heat and taking the overall win. ... [more]  

2014 RORC Transatlantic Race - Aref Lahham's Swan 68, Yacana crossed the finish line of the RORC Transatlantic Race on Sunday 14th December at 03:25 UTC. The crew are all friends from Greece and the German Frers designed yacht with classic lines is beautifully maintained and balanced for a heavy displacement yacht. ... [more]  

2014 Extreme Sailing Series - Act 8 - The Wave, Muscat’s long tenure of the Extreme Sailing Series crown came to an end in Sydney today when Swiss team Alinghi won the eighth and final Act of the year to take an overall victory in the 2014 series despite a superb late challenge from Tom Slingsby on Oman Air. ... [more]  

Images of the Extreme Sailing Series, Act 8, Sydney, Australia and video about most memorable in the Series' eight-year history. The Series was won by Alinghi after an action packed three days of racing on the confines of Sydney Harbour, which was the venue for the international series for the first time. ... [more]  

In this case it was the 5,220-nautical mile stage from Cape Town to Abu Dhabi – the second stage of this year’s Volvo – that took the crew on the China-sponsored entry Dongfeng Race Team just under 24 days to complete. But the striking thing about the men on board Dongfeng is that all of them were finding it very hard to think of anything except the final few hours. ... [more]  

Extreme Sailing Series: Alinghi crowned 2014 and Sydney champions
Extreme Sailing Series -Sydney Land Rover recognises talent
ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne - Medal Race Images
Extreme Sailing Series: Alinghi dons ESS Crown, Oman Air wins award
18ft Skiffs: Rooklyn scores win in Syd. Barnett Jr. Memorial Trophy
ISAF Sailing World Cup: Fan cranks up for final Melbourne day + Videos
Miami Star Winter Series - Commodores Cup Day 1
Extreme Sailing Series: Delayed coverage - Day 4 +Audio *Feature
Volvo Ocean Race - Dongfeng score another excellent result
Audi Melges 20 Miami Winter Series - Fleet rumbles in Miami
Extreme Sailing Series - The Wave, Muscat see championship bid slip
2014 RORC Transatlantic Race - From acorns grow oaks
Volvo Ocean Race - Team Brunel (NED) wins Leg 2
2014 RORC Transatlantic Race - Oakcliff Ocean Racing Team wins
Extreme Sailing Series: Day 3 image gallery from Sydney Harbour *Feature
The Extreme Sailing Series™ - Action-packed day on Sydney Harbour
Early Christmas presents for ISAF Sailing World Cup medallists + Video
Volvo Ocean Race: Leg 2 finish - Team Brunel wins from Dongfeng *Feature
Audi Melges 20 Miami Winter Series - Day 1 overall
2014/2015 Audi Melges 20 Miami Winter Series - Images by Joy Dunigan
Extreme Sailing Series: Live coverage - Day 3 +Audio *Feature   
St. Maarten Heineken Regatta kicks off with successful sponsor party   
Successful seventh edition of 2014 World Yacht Racing Forum   
2014 Star Sailors League Finals - Catching up with Robert Stanjek   
2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup - Melbourne - Day 6 Preview   
Extreme Sailing Series - Act 8 Photos and season highs and lows video   
Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 Leg Two - Final fight to the finish + Video   
Extreme Sailing Series Act 8 - McMillan tops table in Sydney + Video   
Anna Tunnicliffe: Alinghi - Day 2: Extreme Sailing Series, Sydney   
ISAF SWC Melbourne - Top ten prepare for Port Phillip showdown + Video   
Extreme Sailing Series Act Eight 2014 – Photos by Andrea Francolini   
Volvo Ocean Race: Three way alley-brawl on final day of Leg 2 *Feature   
International Audi Melges 20 Miami Winter Series 2014-15: Holiday heat   
ISAF SWC Melbourne: Family affair for Papua New Guinea sailors + Video   
Australian 18 Footers League Club Championship - Stormy capsize   
RORC Transatlantic Race - Lupa spice it up for Line Honours victory   
Extreme Sailing Series: Replay coverage - Day 2 +Audio *Feature   
America's Cup: Oracle crew member's penalty for cheating is reduced *Feature   
US Tour: Four GC32s to compete at Quantum Key West Race Week + Video   
Extreme Sailing Series Act 8 - Wet, wild and windy   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL WAS US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT