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Alinghi Leading Luna Rossa

Second Day Of Quarter Finals - Alinghi Leading Luna Rossa

Second day of the Louis Vuitton Cup 2002-2003 quarter finals, raced on a best of seven series.

The Race Committee is able to start all the matches on time in near perfect conditions, with a SSW breeze of 10-15 knots.

Rod Davis, at the helm of Luna Rossa ITA 74 for the start of the match against Alinghi SUI 64, defends well the starboard side and the two boats cross the starting line even. Luna Rossa tacks on port almost immediately and heads for the right side of the race course. Francesco de Angelis tacks again to go and close on Russell Coutts, forcing him to bounce back to the left. Alinghi seems to have an edge upwind on Luna Rossa and is able to stretch by a couple of boat lengths. Coutts is now defending the right side of the course. With only one third of the first beat to complete, Luna Rossa sails into a favourable wind shift to the left and is able to close the gap on her opponent. The two boats approach the port lay-line of the top mark with Alinghi leading now by one boat length only. Coutts round the first mark 17 seconds ahead of Luna Rossa.

In the first part of the downwind run Francesco de Angelis heads for the right, while Alinghi sails to the left.

Then Luna Rossa gybes to chase Coutts and try to get on his wind. Luna Rossa has a good pace and towards the end of the run she is very close to Alinghi. Coutts, however, defends his position and is able to round the bottom mark with a lead of 9 seconds over the Italians.

In the second beat Francesco de Angelis opts for the right side of the course. Alinghi chooses not to cover and sails to the opposite side.

Halfway through the beat Luna Rossa tacks to go and close on the Swiss, crossing behind by three boat lengths. Coutts defends well his position extending his lead to 37 seconds at the third mark.

In the second run downwind, exactly as in the first run, Luna Rossa gybes early and sails to the right hand side of the course, while Coutts keeps to the left. Then the two boats converge, with Luna Rossa gaining well on Alinghi. At the end of the run Coutts is still in the lead by 13 seconds.

Third and last beat upwind. Alinghi consolidates further her lead. At the last mark rounding Luna Rossa trails behind the Swiss by 36 seconds.

The boats are now in their final run towards the finish. Once again ITA 74 shows a good downwind speed and is able to close the gap on her opponent, but not enough though to overtake Alinghi. Coutts goes to win the race over Luna Rossa by only 8 seconds.

TODAY'S RESULTS - every victory equals 1 point

RACE 2 Romeo - Match 1 Alinghi SUI 64 wins against Luna Rossa ITA 74 (08" lead) Romeo - Match 3 Orm SWE 73 wins against Le Defi FRA 69 (1' 10" lead) Juliet - Match 2 Oracle BMW Racing USA 76 wins against OneWorld USA 65 (17" lead) Juliet - Match 4 Stars & Stripes USA 77 wins against Wight Lightning GBR 70 (1' 17" lead)

SCOREBOARD Alinghi Challenge (2 pts) - Prada Challenge (0 pts) Oracle BMW Racing (2 pts) - OneWorld Challenge (0 pts) Victory Challenge (2 pts) - Le Defi Areva (0 pts) GBR Challenge (1 pt) - Team Dennis Conner (1 pt)

RACE COURSE Windward leeward, 18.5 miles long; six legs total, three windward legs and three downwind legs; first and last legs are 3.25 miles, the remaining four are 3.00 miles.

WEATHER CONDITIONS TODAY Wind from SSW 11-14 knots. Mainly sunny, becoming cloudy in the afternoon.

TODAY'S CREW ON LUNA ROSSA 1. Bowman, Paolo Bassani 2. Mid bowman, Massimiliano Sirena 3. Mastman, Simone de Mari 4. Pitman, Cristian Griggio 5. Left grinder, Massimo Galli 6. Right grinder, Romolo Ranieri 7. Upwind trimmer, Carter Perrin 8. Downwind trimmer, Andrew Hemmings 9. Mainsail trimmer, Sean Clarkson 10.Center grinder, Massimo Gherarducci 11.Helmsman, Francesco de Angelis 12.Tactician, Torben Grael 13.Afterguard, Rod Davis 14.Downwind grinder, Daniele Bresciano 15.Strategist, Michele Ivaldi 16.Navigator, Matteo Plazzi


RACE 3 Romeo - Match 3 Le Defi FRA 69 versus Orm SWE 73 * Romeo - Match 2 OneWorld USA 65 versus Oracle BMW Racing USA 76 Juliet - Match 4 Stars & Stripes USA 77 versus Wight Lightning GBR 70 Juliet - Match 1 Alinghi SUI 64 versus Luna Rossa ITA 74

* Match broacasted live on TV.

WEATHER FORECAST FOR TOMORROW Wind from WSW 10-15 kts. Cloudy.

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