Team NZ struggle in fleet racing

A couple of average starts followed by a couple of much better than average recoveries. That was Day 3 of the America’s Cup World Series regatta at San Francisco for Emirates Team New Zealand.

Boxed in at the starts of the two fleet races sailed, Dean Barker and his crew had no clear lanes ahead of them.

"Starting in the second row is never a good thing," Barker said. "We actually sailed better than we have been. Our speed was good and when we had some opportunities and we took what we could."

Tactician Ray Davies agreed and added." We kept our composure after the bad starts and sailed through the fleet nicely. Our speed was good - in fact the best speed we’ve had for a long time."

Natalie Coughlin, winner of 12 Olympic swimming medals for the United States, was guest racer on board for the last race of the day.

Her impression: "Even though we were going so fast, I was surprised how peaceful it was." Natalie took the opportunity to enjoy the view - it’s fleet week in San Francisco and the Navy and Marines are putting on precision flying displaysamongst other things.

While Natalie was enjoying the view from the back of the boat, further forward five sailors were all concentration as they picked their way through the fleet.

"We kept the pressure on ourselves and we ended the day with a much better handle on the venue for next year’s America’s Cup. In the long run we have got to string it together to get the results we expect."

With fifth and sixth placed finishes team, the team is fifth overall on the leader board.

The third day of racing at America’s Cup World Series San Francisco featured the completion of the quarterfinal round of the match racing championship and races three and four of the fleet racing championship.

In the match racing, Oracle 4 (Spithill) beat J.P. BAR (Ainslie) and Artemis Red (Outteridge) beat Oracle 5 (Coutts).

Both matches featured penalties in the pre-start that favored the Oracle crews. Spithill was able to convert the advantage to a win, but Coutts lost his match when he rounded the wrong mark while leading Artemis to the finish line.

In tomorrow’s semifinal round, Oracle 4will race Artemis White (Terry Hutchinson) and Outteridge will take on Emirates Team New Zealand.

Fleet Racing Championship (After 4 of 7 races) 1.

1. BAR (Ainslie) 1-3-1-2 - 43 points

2. Artemis White (Hutchinson) 10-2-2-1 - 34

3. Artemis Red (Outteridge) 4-4-4-4 - 32

4. Oracle 4 (Spithill) 8-1-6-5 - 29

5. Emirates Team New Zealand 2-8-5-6 - 27

6. Energy Team (Peyron) 6-7-7-3 - 25

7. Oracle 5 (Coutts) 3-5-8-7 - 25

8. Luna Rossa Piranha (Draper) 9-6-3-10 - 20

9. Team Korea (Burling) 5-9-10-8 - 16

10. China Team (Robertson) 7-10-11-9 - 11

11. Luna Rossa Swordfish (Martinez) 11-11-9-11 - 6

Match Racing Standings (5th - 11th) 5. ORACLE TEAM USA COUTTS, 6. Energy Team, 7. J.P. Morgan BAR, 8. Team Korea, 9. China Team, 10. Luna Rossa Piranha, 11. Luna Rossa Swordfish

LATEST BLOG POSTS