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SailGP: Australia comes out fighting on Bermuda's Great Sound - Day 1

by SailGP Media 4 May 13:30 PDT
Australia in pole position on Leg 1 on Race Day 1 of the Apex Group Bermuda Sail Grand Prix - May 4, 2024 © Samo Vidic/SailGP

Australia has bounced back from its devastating Christchurch penalty by dominating fleet racing on the opening day of Bermuda.

Tom Slingsby’s team - which won SailGP’s last event in Bermuda - executed stunning starts and clinical maneuvers to pick up two race wins and a third place finish, ending the day at the top of the leaderboard with 28 points.

It puts the Aussies in pole position heading into Day 2, with more picture perfect conditions forecast tomorrow.

It comes after Australia lost the season lead in Christchurch after hitting a race mark and being handed a devastating eight point penalty to its season total.

Speaking after racing, Slingsby joked that the team ‘should crash into marks more often’. “The conditions were perfect and we were able to sail away,” he said. “It felt a bit like the Australia of old.”

Phil Robertson’s Canada also had an impressive performance, backing up commanding starts with rapid boat speed and well executed maneuvers. The team jostled with Australia at the top of the fleet throughout and finished the day with 2-2-6 race results to finish second overall with 23 points.

Elsewhere, Nicolai Sehested’s Rockwool - also under pressure to perform after incurring a four point season score penalty for hitting Canada in Christchurch - finished the day in third overall after picking up consistent 6-3-2 race results.

The Danish ended the day with 22 points, tied with season leaders New Zealand, which sits in 4th. They finished the day in ruthless fashion, aggressively pushing Australia off the course on the approach to the finish line to claim second place.

“It was quite an important point for us and we knew whoever was going to get that point was the one who wanted it the most,” Sehested said after racing.

Elsewhere, it was a tricky day for Quentin Delapierre’s France, which is under pressure to climb the leaderboard ahead of San Francisco’s Grand Final. The team finished the day with 4-9-8 race results to finish 7th overall with 12 points.

Meanwhile, Taylor Canfield's United States is unable to race this weekend after the team capsized in practice training, damaging their F50's wing.

Racing resumes at 14:00 ADT on May 5.

Season 4 - Bermuda Day 1 leaderboard

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