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Monday, February 29, 2016

Ainslie and his BAR Boys Clean Up In Oman - Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series

Ben Ainslie, the most decorated Olympic sailor in history, led his Land Rover BAR team to victory at the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series in Oman this weekend.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
Ainslie beat his former skipper, Jimmy Spithill and Oracle Team USA, by two points, with the winning margin secured on a late charge in the final race.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
Ainslie says winning the event in Oman was an important measuring stick for the team, which hadn’t won since securing victory on home waters in Portsmouth last summer.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
“We kept fighting through today. Compared to the teams with established track records, we need to prove we can compete at the top of the fleet and I think we are getting back to doing that. We have a big team of designers, boat builders and support staff back at home working very hard for us and they want to know that we can win this thing,” he said.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
For Oracle Team USA the second place result was a fourth consecutive podium finish in a Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series regatta. But for all that, the team has yet to win.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
“We’ve made some good steps forward, but we need to get going. It’s good to be on the podium. We’re one of only two teams to have been on the podium at each event. But we want to win. There’s no two ways about it,” Spithill said after racing
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
With a third place result in Oman, Emirates Team New Zealand retains its place atop the overall Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series leaderboard, but Oracle Team USA, in second place, has closed the gap to just six points.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
“The last race was a little bit disappointing for us. But to come away from any event still holding the overall lead is a good thing. At the end of the day that’s what counts,” said skipper Glenn Ashby, referring to a fifth place finish.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
Ashby is right. The leader at the conclusion of the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series will carry two bonus points forward into the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup Qualifiers in May 2017 in Bermuda. The second place team earns one bonus point.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
A popular result on Sunday came from Groupama Team France, who finished strongly with a second place finish followed by a victory. With Adam Minoprio replacing the injured Franck Cammas on the helm this weekend, the team converted two strong start line performances into top finishes.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
“We were pretty stoked on board. You could see the excitement on the guys faces,” Minoprio said. “We didn’t have the strongest start to the regatta but we’re happy to have been improving through the weekend and finishing with a win.”
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
Both SoftBank Team Japan and Artemis Racing continued to show moments of promised but fell back in the fleet over the course of the day; bad breaks combined with poor decisions or handling errors to put the pair at the bottom of the table.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
The Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series Oman marked the first America’s Cup sailing in the Middle East and was a milestone event for the host, Oman Sail.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
“This was a fantastic weekend for us,” said David Graham, the CEO of Oman Sail. “Promoting Oman through the America’s Cup broadcast was a fantastic opportunity for us.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
“It was also tremendous to see the integration of our youth sailing programs with AC Endeavour. And I think perhaps most significant for me was how the Omanis on our team led the charge and delivered a fantastic event," he added.
Photo: © 2016 ACEA/ Photo Ricardo Pinto
Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series Oman – Final Leaderboard. Full results here>>>

1. Land Rover BAR - 8, 10, 10, 18, 14, 16 - 76 points
2. ORACLE TEAM USA - 9, 6, 9, 12, 20, 18 - 74 points
3. Emirates Team New Zealand - 10, 7, 5, 20, 16, 12 - 70 points
4. Groupama Team France - 5, 8, 7, 10, 18, 20 - 68 points
5. SoftBank Team Japan - 6, 9, 6, 16, 10, 14 - 61 points
6. Artemis Racing - 7, 5, 8, 14, 12, 10 - 56 points

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