Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Crunch Time For Oracle Team USA

As if Emirates Team New Zealand and Oracle Team USA didn’t deliver enough thrills and spills over the weekend, today the stakes are raised even higher: two more wins for Emirates Team New Zealand and the Kiwis win the America’s Cup for the third time (1995, 2000).
Photo: © ACEA / Photo Ricardo Pinto
Oracle Team USA, of course, isn’t going to stop believing. The defender was out on San Francisco Bay yesterday practicing and last night got a special shout out at the Journey concert at the America’s Cup Pavilion (see video at bottom). The team has made a noticeable leap with its upwind boatspeed and tactics, and they’ll need both today to stave off the Kiwis march.
Photo: © ACEA / Photo Ricardo Pinto
“The development of these two teams through the finals has been immense,” said Oracle Team USA tactician Ben Ainslie. “Where we’d be in six months time, how would we be sailing these boats around the course, would be so much better, so much faster, the handling so much better. Certainly the sailors have enjoyed the challenge of taking on this new class of boat and developing.”
Photo: © ACEA / Photo Ricardo Pinto
Emirates Team New Zealand will have port tack in the pre-start maneuvers for Race 11 and Oracle Team USA will have it in Race 12. The question is will the conditions prevent the teams from racing? On Sunday Regatta Director Iain Murray intimated that the winds could be too strong and yesterday’s forecast wasn’t favorable. An ebb tide of 3 knots is expected with winds of 20 to 25 knots, gusting higher.

Race 11 is scheduled to start at 1315 and Race 12 at 1415 PT.

34th America’s Cup Standings (first to 9 points wins)
Emirates Team New Zealand – 7
Oracle Team USA – 1

America's Cup Media

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