Race schedule given further tune-up; Two jolts on second day of racing; Emirates Team NZ get a comfortable win

23 Apr 2007

Editorial: Making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear

Welcome to Sail-World.Com’s America’s Cup newsletter for Day 7 of the 2007 Louis Vuitton Cup and just the second day of racing.

Only one flight was able to be completed of the two scheduled, meaning that a tight race schedule has got even tighter.

On the event organisation front there was plenty of action with the Challengers Commission announcing further tuning to the changes in the race program, caused by the light and non-existent winds that have plagued this event since its inception on 16th April.

Just three flights have been completed in seven days. That is one and half day’s racing in a venue that has good breeze.

The moves from the Challengers are designed to protect the Semi-Finals and Finals dates and to avoid these being subject to the vagaries of the Valencia weather. Bob Fisher covers these in a second edition of his column, written after the joint media conference called by America’s Cup Management (the event management arm of the defender Alinghi) and the Challenger Commission (representing all the Challengers in the 32nd America’s Cup).

Emirates Team New Zealand NZL92 and +39 ITA85 run up to the start for their day seven race of the Louis Vuitton cup round robin one.   Emirates Team NZ/ ©Photo Chris Cameron ETNZ

Full marks to the Challengers Commission, and the Challengers themselves, for working to make the best of a very difficult situation that was not really of their making.

In the best of America’s Cup traditions, where the Defender has always held the trump cards, and in this new era, in spite of all the bonhomie post 2003, nothing has really changed. The Defender picked the dates which it suited them to Defend, and everyone else just had to work in.

Today’s racing underlined what we saw on the other day of racing – expect the unexpected.

There were two jolts today. First was the powerhouse team of BMW Oracle Racing trailing South Africa’s Team Shosholoza, and undoubted Cup rookie, for two legs and only easing past them after a mark rounding snafu at the end of the second leg where the South Africans held a very defendable advantage. Bar this error, and making others, the South African should have been able to defend and would have pulled off a magnificent upset.

BMW Oracle Racing took South Africa apart with surgical precision after RSA butchered their lead at the Leg 2  BMW Oracle Racing ©Photo - Gilles Martin-Raget

The other was the win by the French Areva Challenge over Desafio Espanol, after the home team broke the end of their spinnaker pole and were forced to set from the bow for the remainder of the downwind legs. Areva soon rolled over them and blotted the copybook of one of the more fancied teams.

Emirates Team New Zealand made a no-contest of it over +39. Today’s racing puts their loss to Mascazone Latino in context. And underlines the fact that in these weather conditions any team, no matter how well funded, tested and developed is vulnerable to the fickle Valencian breezes.

This discomfort might cause some smirks in the Alinghi camp. But, in the long run, it is much better for the Challengers to have a closely fought series from beginning to the end, than a walk in the park in the early stages of what will be a very reduced regatta.

Good sailing!

Richard Gladwell
NZ Editor

By nzeditor@sail-world.com

Fisher's View: A little is better than nothing
By Bob Fisher,
Aeolus returned briefly from his holiday and provided two hours of breeze; enough, it seemed, to hold one flight of racing on both courses, but it was readily apparent that there was not going to be a second flight when the progress to the finish was slower than it had been on the first run in each of the five races. Within minutes of the finish, further racing was abandoned... [more]

Desafío Español suffers a broken spinnaker pole
By Desafío Español 2007 media,
Desafio Español 2007 was dominant over their opponent in the pre-start, defending the right side and maintaining their position. The Spanish team entered the course beside the committee boat, and with a wind speed of 8 knots, they began to take the lead early in the first leg. Desafío Español 2007 were unable to win against the French team Areva. A break in the spinnaker pole in their first leg with the wind behind them meant that the regatta, although led from the start by the Spanish, finished in victory for the French syndicate.... [more]

Quotes of the Day: Louis Vuitton Cup Race Day 7
By America's Cup Media,
Quotes of the day from teams involved in the second day of racing in the 2007 Louis Vuitton Cup: Peter Isler, Navigator, BMW Oracle Racing on their match against Shosholoza: 'In these conditions nothing is assured. All the boats are very close in speed this time around. Every race we have sailed against them, they have shown that they tack well, and they straight line well, so it was no surprise they were ahead... [more]

Race organisers reschedule round robins
By Warren Douglas, Emirates Team NZ Media,
Race organizers have rescheduled the round robins of the Louis Vuitton Cup which had been thrown into disarray by the week of light and shifty winds. Race organizers have rescheduled the round robins of the Louis Vuitton Cup which had been thrown into disarray by the week of light and shifty winds.... [more]

Only one race but it is a winner for Emirates TNZ
By Warren Douglas, Emirates Team NZ Media,
A better day on the water today. First the race committee managed to get off one flight of matches before the breeze died away and racing was abandoned. And second, NZL 92 racing on the south course, beat +39 (ITA 85) by a more than comfortable 2m 41s. It was only NZL 92’s second race of the regatta.... [more]

Third victory, Luna Rossa first on the leaderboard
By Luna Rossa Media,
In the only match raced today Luna Rossa faced off against United Internet Team Germany. Weather conditions saw winds were from the north east at 6-7 knots, cloudy skies and moderate seas. In the pre-start ITA 94 enters form port and Spithill avoids Jesper Bank’s attempt to corner him into a dial-up.... [more]

Longtze fails to stop Victory Challenge
By China Team,
The pre-start is relatively non-aggressive for the two teams because of the light wind. A few seconds before the starting gun, the Swedes are successful in slowing down Longtze, forced to tack just before the committee boat. Pierre Mas however was still able to gain the favored side, the right, and would be able to quickly accelerate the boat on the heels of Magnus Holmberg.... [more]

BMW ORACLE Racing maintains winning momentum
By BMW Oracle Racing Media,
BMW ORACLE Racing maintained its winning momentum with three wins from three starts in the opening round of the Louis Vuitton Cup, posting a come-from-behind win over the South African Shosholoza team in Valencia today... [more]

No chance for Luna Rossa to pass Germany I
By Oliver Laskowsky, United Internet Team Germany,
Despite a good match the United Internet Team Germany did not manage to win its third match race of the Louis Vuitton Cup. The German team reached the finish line 50 seconds behind the favoured Team Luna Rossa Challenge from Italy. During the race the team around skipper Jesper Bank managed to close the gap again and again.... [more]

Fisher's View: What a way to run a Regatta
By Bob Fisher,
'We did analysis of the [weather] statistics and Valencia was always the best,' said America’s Cup Management CEO, Michel Bonnefous at a press conference this morning, and stuck to that line through intensive questioning. 'We have done precise research and have good numbers – the worst case in April was losing four days.'... [more]

Only one flight of racing possible on Day 2 of LVC
By America's Cup Media,
The light conditions prevailing at the Louis Vuitton Cup continued on Sunday but the gradient breeze proved just strong and stable enough for fair racing. One flight of racing was completed in front of a large spectator fleet eager to see America’s Cup action.... [more]

Louis Vuitton Cup - Flight 3 completed on Sunday
The light conditions prevailing at the Louis Vuitton Cup continued on Sunday but the gradient breeze proved just strong and stable enough for fair racing. One flight of racing was completed in front of a large spectator fleet eager to see America's Cup action... [more]

Further race Schedule Changes agreed by Challengers
By Challenger Commission,
The Challenger Commission for the 32nd America's Cup ('CC') met at the call of the Chair, Alessandra Pandarese (ITA) of Mascalzone Latino Capitalia Team, at the ACM offices in Valencia from 1800 to 2030 last evening, Saturday 21 April. Representatives of ten of the eleven Challengers were present. Apologies were received from +39... [more]

Louis Vuitton Cup - Sunday
By Sail-World.com/uk,
We are into day seven of the schedule and so far only one days racing has been completed. Today, Sunday, racing has started after postponement. Breeze out on the two courses is showing 6 knots plus at 14:15 local time... [more]

With boats becalmed, sponsors grow restless
By Doreen Carvajal. International Herald Tribune,
With placid sea winds transforming the America's Cup competition into a pleasure cruise for the fourth straight day, corporate sponsors are fuming and impatient television broadcasters are pulling the plug on planned live coverage.... [more]

2007 America's Cup

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