Race Day 6 - Afternoon Report: Twas A Raceday of
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Round Robin 1 - Race 10 -
Nippon Battles the Waves:
A strange afternoon followed a bizarre morning at the Louis Vuitton Cup on Wednesday.
There were only four matches scheduled, with AmericOne's race postponed until Thursday. Of those, the Nippon Challenge was expected to sail the course unopposed by the FAST 2000 syndicate who were still repairing their boat. This was the final start scheduled, and Nippon sailed the course to collect 's point.
Prada's Luna Rossa was matched against Abracadabra and the race turned into a laugher for the Italians. Abracadabra was late for the start, followed Prada up the first beat, and didn't fly a spinnaker on the first downwind leg. Prada won easily, although Abracadabra did fly a protest flag at the start.
America True also had an easy afternoon in their match against Spain. America True carried a small lead across the start line, and around the first windward mark. But Bravo Espana suffered severe spinnaker difficulties when its chute wrapped around the forestay during a gybe. The Spaniards struggled and fought, as America True sailed away. Spain couldn't clear up the problem before the leeward mark, and retired from the race. America True sailed the rest of the way alone, to earn a win.
Finally, Stars & Stripes won its match against Young Australia when the Aussies couldn't make it to the start line. Young Australia asked for a postponement, but the committee wouldn't grant them any time. Stars & Stripes sailed the course alone, the Aussies were towed in, protest flag flying.
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America True Wins, Brava Espana Does Not
America True had a slight advantage at the start line (00:03) and held cover through a mini tacking duel up the left side of the course. At the top mark Bravo Espana had fallen 35 seconds behind. Spain lost this race when it wrapped its spinnaker around the forestay on a gybe. The Spaniards couldn't free the tangle, even with a man up the mast working on the sail for long agonising minutes. As America True sailed away, Spain could only watch helplessly. Bravo Espana retired from the race, and the Americans sailed around the course alone
Stars & Stripes Wins, Young
Australia Does Not Start
For the second time today, Stars & Stripes sailed the course alone to collect a point. Young Australia requested a postponement this afternoon, but the race committee did not grant it. Team Dennis Conner started alone and sailed the course, Young Australia was towed home with a red protest flag flying.
Fast 2000 Does Not Start
The Japanese had an easy afternoon, sailing the course while its opponent completed repairs in the boat shed. Asura sailed the course to collect its point, while the Swiss FAST 2000 team completed work on its boat to be ready for Round Robin Two of the Louis Vuitton Cup.
Luna Rossa Beats Abracadabra 2000 - Delta
Luna Rossa has won every race in Round Robin One, and Abracadabra 2000 was the final victim. It was not much of a battle. In the pre-start period, Abracadabra 2000 suffered gear failure. The Americans took down the headsail and re-hoisted it just before the start. Luna Rossa crossed the start line with a substantial lead of 57 seconds. Abracadabra flew the red protest flag at the start. The pair tacked only once on its way to the top mark. On the first run the Americans did not hoist their kite and lost a lot of ground. Prada won comfortably