Team New Zealand Sail a Clean Penultimate Day of Qualifiers
Emirates Team New Zealand Sail a Clean Penultimate Day of Qualifiers
A double race day in Bermuda for Emirates Team
New Zealand, the Kiwis taking on Softbank Team Japan and
Groupama Team France on the penultimate day of racing in the
Louis Vuitton America’s Cup Qualifiers.
Sailing in a perfect 13-15 knot breeze, strong starts and boat speed were the key factors in the Kiwi team dominating both races.
In race one helmsman Peter Burling nailed the start over Dean Barker who was hunting a late hook. But the Japanese boat ended up trailing Emirates Team New Zealand off the line and around mark one.
Emirates Team New
Zealand sailed a flawless race, only coming off their foils
as they crossed the finish line after extending all the way
around the race course.
“The boys sailed a great race it, said Burling. ”We definitely learned a lot last time we sailed in these conditions. We really set things up nicely with that start against Dean who has been one of the strongest starters in the regatta so far. The guys were locked in and pumping hard, so it's good to get that point on the board.”
A similar scenario played out in the second race of the day. Burling locked Frenchman Franck Cammas out at the start, turning down to cross the line in a big puff at the gun and streaking past mark one ten seconds up.
The hapless French had no answer to the sheer pace and control of Emirates Team New Zealand, the Kiwi boat achieving the first official “perfect” race foiling right around the track for a 100 per cent fly-time to win by 4:06.
Today's two wins take Emirates Team New
Zealand to the top of the points table after Oracle Team USA
lost their match against Artemis Racing. That’s sets up a
tantalising duel between the Kiwis and the Americans for top
spot in the qualifiers.
“We try and improve and today we feel like we have improved a little bit. That's what we are here to do,” said Burling. "You just look at the performance numbers we do every day we get quicker and quicker. The tacks get better, the gybes get better and the modes you can sail get better."