Please select your home edition
Edition
North Sails Performance 2023 - LEADERBOARD

Grudge match erupts between the Aussies and Kiwis for the Chicago podium

by Australia SailGP Team 17 Jun 2023 21:09 PDT
New Zealand SailGP Team, Canada SailGP Team and Australia SailGP Team sail past the Chicago Harbor Lighthouse during the final race on Race Day 2 of the Rolex United States Sail Grand Prix | Chicago © Bob Martin/SailGP

The Aussies and Kiwis had the opportunity for a re-match at the podium final of the Rolex United States Sail Grand Prix | Chicago at Navy Pier, but it was Burling's New Zealand crew that took the win on Lake Michigan.

Chicago, known as the 'windy city', delivered unprecedented light air conditions for the final day of racing which forced all SailGP teams to race in the four-up configuration. Australia's Tom Slingsby had Kyle Langford onboard as Wing Trimmer, Tash Bryant as Strategist, with Kinley Fowler taking the challenging position of managing both the Flight Controller and Grinder positions on the flying roo.

However the Australian's relentless pursuit of victory and ability to innovate in little-to-no wind propelled them to the forefront of the competition, overcoming an early penalty in the final fleet race to secure a seat in the podium final.

Tom Slingsby said: "It's actually way more stressful racing in these light conditions, because you can't see the water on the course so you are drifting around there just hoping for that miracle gust of wind, it's a bit of a lottery."

The Australians met with the Kiwis and Candians on the start line, with the race coming down to which team could hunt the wind, with even the smallest of gains proving crucial to keep team's momentum in the reduced four leg race.

The final leg of the race became a two boat slow motion sprint to the finish line between the Aussies and the Kiwis, with the nail biting tension clearly visible on board for both teams. Burling managed to take the lead to win the event, with Slingsby's crew coming in a close second place.

Tom Slingsby said: "Pete was really aggressive in defending the pin-end of the start line from us which allowed them to get the best start and take the lead. I've gotta say good on them, they deserved the win.

"Obviously we wanted to win but we are happy with a second place in the first event of the season. If us and the Kiwis continue in first and second battling away for the season to that Grand Final we will be happy," Slingsby added.

The New Zealand Team's victory in Chicago has marked an exciting beginning of SailGP Season 4 and signals that the rivalry between the Aussies and the Kiwis is just getting started. SailGP will remain in the United States for the next event taking place in Los Angeles Sail Grand Prix on July 22-23.

Related Articles

Dramatic capsize caused by "tech malfunction"
Ruins Australia SailGP Team's chances in Halifax The ROCKWOOL Canada Sail Grand Prix witnessed a disastrous turn of events as Tom Slingsby's Australia SailGP Team encountered a dramatic capsize caused by a tech malfunction, sending shockwaves among fans who watched on from the Halifax shoreline. Posted on 3 Jun
Australia sustains major damage
In dramatic collision on Lyttelton Harbour Tom Slingsby and his Australian crew have been hit with a devastating blow after a dramatic collision with a course mark during the first fleet race of the Championship Sunday forced the team to retire from racing altogether. Posted on 24 Mar
Slingsby returns to Team Australia
As SailGP visits Abu Dhabi for the first time Australia SailGP Team driver and CEO, Tom Slingsby is back behind the wheel of the Flying Roo following a temporary leave of absence, as his crew dominates day one of practice in Abu Dhabi. Posted on 12 Jan
Australia claims podium in nail biter Dubai final
With Jimmy Spithill announcing his retirement from SailGP Jimmy Spithill has steered Australia to a podium finish in Dubai, in a nail biting final that saw multiple lead changes and a near pile up in the last mark. Posted on 10 Dec 2023
Jimmy Spithill steers the Roo to pole position
The Australia SailGP Team emerged as the front-runners after Day One in Dubai The Australia SailGP Team emerged as the front-runners on the opening day of the Emirates Dubai Sail Grand Prix presented by P&O Marinas. immy Spithill led the Australian crew to an outstanding performance, securing the top spot on the leaderboard. Posted on 9 Dec 2023
Jimmy Spithill takes to the Flying Roo in Dubai
Jimmy Spithill, joins the Aussies on board the Flying Roo for the first time Jimmy Spithill, former driver and CEO of the United States SailGP Team, has taken learnings from his first training session on board with the Australia Team at the Emirates Dubai Sail Grand Prix presented by P&O Marinas. Posted on 7 Dec 2023
Aussies break Saint Tropez SailGP curse
Securing podium finish at the France Sail Grand Prix Tom Slingsby and his Australian crew have finally broken their 'Saint Tropez curse', securing second place at the France Sail Grand Prix in Saint Tropez. Posted on 10 Sep 2023
Kiwis wing collapses in first day of St Tropez
Aussies show glimmer of hope to break the curse of St Tropez The Australians managed to finish the first day of racing at the France Sail Grand Prix in the middle of the pack, but it was the Kiwis who shocked fans worldwide with a dramatic incident taking place post racing. Posted on 9 Sep 2023
It's all on for AUS and NZL at France SailGP
Tom Slingsby (AUS) throws jabs at Peter Burling (NZL) in St Tropez Australia's Tom Slingsby throws jabs at New Zealand Driver Peter Burling ahead of France Sail Grand Prix Showdown Posted on 8 Sep 2023
Fairytale win for the Spanish team in Los Angeles
“I'm sure I'll calm down but right now it's pretty raw” Los Angeles hosted a fairytale ending for the Spain SailGP Team, who secured its first ever victory in SailGP against Australia and Denmark. Posted on 24 Jul 2023
Mackay Boats 728x90 BOTTOMHenri-Lloyd Fathers Day 2024Selden 2020 - FOOTER