The America's Cup Match Race Championship in Plymouth came to an end on Saturday with Green Comm Racing claiming seventh place overall after beating China Team in the day's only race. The progress throughout the week has been impressive, crew work has made huge leaps since the first America's Cup World Series event in Cascais and the crew is now feeling confident it can be competitive.
Despite being just the third time ever Green Comm Racing was match racing on an AC45 the crew had decided to be aggressive and push hard in the prestart. Unfortunately, the Spanish yacht was marginally over the line early, by a fraction of a second. The noise from the TV helicopters hovering over the race course prevented Vasilij Zbogar from hearing the race committee's radio call and Green Comm Racing zoomed until halfway the first leg.
By the time they were back and recrossed the starting line the Chinese had built a comfortable lead. However, that didn't discourage Green Comm Racing's crew that stepped on the accelerator and through a combination of boat speed and tactics shrank the deficit. When the Chinese committed an unforced error and sailed in the wrong course, Green Comm Racing didn't forgive it and won the race.
The team's focus now is the all-important fleet race on 'Super Sunday' that sets the counter back to zero for all teams. It is the event's most important fleet race as it determines the points towards the 2011-2012 America's Cup Fleet Racing World Championship. Quotes of the day
Vasilij Zbogar, helmsman: 'I'm very happy with today's race against the Chinese. We said in the morning meeting we were going to push hard and that's what we did. Unfortunately, right at the starting line we were marginally over early, by a fraction of a second... We saw we got a penalty but we weren't sure why. I heard the radio call quite late in the first leg because of the noise from the helicopters. We were going very fast, so we lost precious time going back.
However, we made most of the disadvantage and nearly caught up with the Chinese. We are very happy onboard and all the guys did a very good job. We are improving in every single race we sail.
We feel very confident about Sunday's final race!'