Friday, August 12, 2011

The Kiwis Are Just Creaming It In Cascais

August 13 2011

Third straight winning day at Cascais for Emirates Team New Zealand
Photo: Chris Cameron/ETNZ
Emirates Team New Zealand has emerged from Day 5 of the Cascais AC45 World Series with its third straight winning day.

With 10 points from three fleet races and a single match race, Emirates Team New Zealand won the day, followed by Oracle Racing 4 on 9 and Oracle Racing 5 on 8.
Photo: Chris Cameron/ETNZ
After trailing Oracle Racing 4 (James Spithill) by five points at the end of fleet racing Barker with Glen Ashby, Winston Macfarlane, James Dagg and Ray Davies engaged them in a tight, tense and thrilling match race to decide the day’s winner.

It was classic America’s Cup match racing just as it was in the monohulls of 2007 and before... a close start, close racing and tacks and gybes aplenty which put a premium on tactical decision-making. There was even a dial down and several lead changes.
Photo: Chris Cameron/ETNZ
It was even at the start. Both boats crossed the line at speed with Oracle 4 to leeward and slightly ahead. Barker was 2s adrift at the first mark. The boats split, came together and split again. On the first upwind leg, Spithill tried a dial down to shake off Barker.

Barker slipped around behind him and headed for the right sIde of the course to set up for an attack. Barker stormed into mark 3 at speed, Oracle’s final approach was slower and Barker got around first.
Photo: Chris Cameron/ETNZ
Then followed several lead changes but there was nothing in it. At Mark 4 Barker was 2s ahead. It was not until the 5th leg that Barker started to feel even a little comfortable. At the finish the delta was 37s.

Earlier in the day Barker emerged from the three fleet races in second place. Oracle 4 was at the top of the leader board with 30 points, having had three straight wins. Barker with a 3,3,2 record had 25 points and Artemis (2,2,4) was also on 25. A countback on the third fleet race gave second place to Emirates Team New Zealand.

At the end of the day, the points table was:

Emirates Team New Zealand 10
Oracle Racing 4 - 9
Oracle Racing 5  - 8
Artemis Racing 7
Team Korea 6
Green Comm Racing 5
Energy Team 4
Aleph 3
China Team 3

Match race results

Emirates Team New Zealand beat Oracle Racing 4
Oracle Racing 5 beat Artemis Racing
Green Comm Racing beat Team Korea

In fleet race two, Emirates Team New Zealand struggled to furl the gennaker. Barker said the sail was not furling tightly creating difficulties when unfurling. “The wind caught the sail as we rounded. Once it resulted in a wine glass and at the end of the runs we had to wrestle the sail down. It cost us quite a lot of time.” Barker said.

Warren Douglas/Emirates Team New Zealand

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